Comic books have been entertaining women and men of all ages and backgrounds for generations and will likely continue to do so for generations to come, crossing the print boundaries and making their way onto our television, cinema and computer screens. With each passing year, the comic book trend grows rapidly, with Hollywood movies yearly bringing favourite characters to life and expanding the comic book industry's already massive fanbase. Blockbusters like “Catwoman” and the “Dark Knight” series attracted both fans of the comic and others who knew very little about the characters; but you can be certain that many of those who hadn't heard of these heroes before the movie were at their local comic book store in the morning buying several issues! Indeed, comic book stores have reported an increase in sales following Marvel and DC films.
With the recent interest in comic books, conventions that cater to these fans have been popping up all over the world. Here, fans can mingle with others who have similar interests, debate whether or not Superman would annihilate Batman if they were to ever cross paths, purchase rare items for their collections, meet comic book creators and artists, and if they choose to do so: dress up as their favorite character. This trend, known as cosplay, has become incredibly popular and has even become mainstream thanks to shows like “Heroes of Cosplay” and the Big Bang Theory. Whether you are an avid collector who refuses to take them out of their plastic protective case in order to preserve the value and worth in hopes of one day selling them for enough money to book a permanent vacation to Bora Bora, or a fan of the struggles that your hero or heroine faces in their world who lines up early in the morning for the new releases, one thing is certain: comic books and their characters have a special place in our hearts.
When considering comic books and the characters that inhabit the realms and worlds, a lot of people (or, okay, at least some people) are left wondering “who is the richest?” Fans watch as Batman seems to just pull out wads of money on whatever crazy Bat toy he feels like - those Batmobiles surely didn't come cheap - and they often wonder exactly how big his bank account really is. Is there any genuinely logical continuity in the characters' wealth and their habits? Thanks to the clever people at Forbes, calculations have been done on just how rich the biggest fictional characters really are. Of course, it can be hard to estimate exactly what their net worth is since it is rarely, if ever, revealed in the comics, so you might be surprised by just how rich some of your favorite fictional characters really are. Read on for the top 5 richest comic book characters as of 2013, according to Forbes' statistics.
5 Lara Croft- Tomb Raider $1 billion net worth
You probably know the feisty, busty heroine from the popular Tomb Raider video game series. In these games, you play the dashing archaeologist Lara Croft and follow her on her quests for rare artifacts as she explores exotic locations. Due to the popularity of the video games, she has also earned her own comic book series published by Top Cow. Although those comics are no longer in print, she still maintains her position as number 5 on our list. She's a British heiress, the daughter of Lord Richard Croft, and received most of her wealth through inheritance, but gathering up artifacts certainly pays off as well. Lara Croft got her start in adventure-seeking when her plane crashed and she is forced to figure out how to survive on her own.
4 Richie Rich - Richie Rich Comics $5.8 billion net worth
With a name like Richie Rich, there's no way this guy could miss a top spot on the list. He occupies the Harvey Comics universe and is the richest kid living within that fictional universe. Known as the “poor little rich boy”, Richie is actually depicted as being very generous and kind to those around him. Although he's just 7 years old, Richie seems to own at least two of everything, and can be found lounging poolside, going on adventures with his dog Dollar, who has dollar signs instead of spots, or attending school in Richville. We certainly wish we could have had a fraction of his fortune when we were that age!
3 Bruce Wayne- Batman $9.2 billion net worth
You had to know that he would come in at some point on our list! Whenever anybody thinks of the wealthiest comic book characters, Batman is always one of the first that comes to mind. Bruce Wayne received a substantial amount of wealth from the death of his parents. He inhabits the DC universe, fighting crime under the guise of Batman with the help of Alfred, his loyal butler, who helps maintain his secret identity and keeps a handle on all of Bruce’s high tech toys, appointments, vehicles, and his luxuriant home. He's also the founding member of the Justice League, a group dedicated to taking down the opposing evil forces, although in some of the comics - particularly the Dark Knight - Batman can be found working alone. In other comic versions, Batman teams up with Robin to stop crime.
2 Tony Stark- Ironman $12.4 billion net worth
Tony Stark, or Iron Man, is a superhero who inhabits the Marvel universe. He is an American billionaire playboy known for his witty remarks and flirty attitude who earned his money through the very lucrative weapons industry. Tony Stark was captured and forced to create a weapon of mass destruction for terrorists - and received a chest injury in the process. Instead of building something for the terrorists to use, he makes himself a suit and uses it to escape; he later refines this suit which connects to the reactor that lies within his chest that keeps rogue shrapnel from his heart. Later, Tony Stark teams up with other members in the Marvel universe and founds the Avengers.
1 Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks- Orphan Annie Comics $36.2 Billion
Orphan Annie may be best known to us millennials for her titular role in the musical Annie, but she came from a strong comic book tradition and her wealthy adoptive father is the richest comic book character in the whole of the fictional world. There's certainly a reason why they call him Daddy "Warbucks": he raked in the wealth during the war. At one point in the comics, his wealth reached 10 zillion dollars (!) - which readers would have thought would improve his failing marriage and miserable attitude, but it didn't. At several points in the comic books, Oliver’s marriage appears to be strained and he seems extremely unhappy until his wife adopts Annie. Oliver takes the role of the father-figure very seriously and is always there to help Annie in her times of need. Despite the vast amounts of wealth accumulated, he's sometimes seen borrowing from Annie’s piggybank, leaving behind an I.O.U. He's always quick to repay Annie, though, but we can't help but wonder why the billionaire war lord would need to borrow money from his adopted daughter.