“I am many things, Kal-El… here, I am a god”-Darkseid
“You are the last dozen rungs on my ladder to Godhood, to omnipotence beyond that of Dark Phoenix or Onslaught. Beyond even the almighty Celestials. Know now that you are the Twelve of Power destined to change the world forever…NOT save it.”-Apocalypse
This week’s “Fight of the Week!” is between two of DC and Marvel’s most powerful villains, Darkseid and Apocalypse. Darkseid is one of the most infamous villains in DC as one of the most cunning and powerful villains ever to come into conflict with the Justice League. His opponent is arguably the most powerful villain in the Marvel universe(rivaled only by some incarnations of Ultron or Thanos with the Infinity Gauntlet). Both of these characters are very well written in their motivations and characterizations in that they are perfect examples of what can be called a “Lawful Evil” type alignment, which means that they still respect and understand the need for law and order while still being evil.
The first of these tyrannical being is Darkseid. Darkseid is one of the New Gods, beings who came to power after the death of the Old Gods, alongside his half-brother and chief rival Highfather. Darkseid is the ruler of the planet Apokolips, a planet devoted to war and conquest in pursuit of the “anti-life equation”. The anti-life equation, if found by Darkseid, would grant him the power to recreate the universe as he sees fit, allowing him to rule the universe as he does Apokolips. Darkseid came into contact with earth believing that humans have the key to most, if not all, of the anti-life equation he so desires. Much of his power comes from a force called the Omega Force. In fact, it is believed the only known source of energy or power to rival the Omega Force is the Speed Force. The Omega Beam, which Darkseid usually projects from his hands or eyes, is his most powerful ability, allowing him to teleport, disintegrate, and even resurrect his desired target. Darkseid has used the Omega Beam to teleport his failed servants to Apokolips for punishment, for example, and has resurrected his servant Desaad on more than one occasion. The Omega Beam is so powerful that it can easily bring down Superman. On a physical level, Darkseid is incredibly powerful. He possesses limitless stamina and brings an unrivaled intellect to bear, strategically moving pieces for years before making the coup de grâce. In another testament to his incredible intellect, Darkseid was outsmarted Braniac during their encounter. In addition, Darkseid has a level of invulnerability and physical strength that is believed to be without match in the universe. Darkseid is easily able to overpower Superman in hand to hand combat, and was able to crush a Green Lantern ring with his bare hand. In addition to incredible strength, he possesses incredible agility: his reaction time is in the microseconds. Darkseid also possesses the ability to grow at will and to manipulate matter. In addition to significant levels of physical abilities, Darkseid possesses multiple psionic powers. Darkseid can telepathically communicate with beings anywhere in the universe, control the minds of multiple beings at once, and commands a formidable level of telekinesis. The extent of his mind control, however, is unknown. Darkseid also has a powerful teleportation ability. He can transport himself and anyone he wishes to teleport anywhere in the universe. Despite this, he tends to prefer using “Boom Tubes” to teleport, a New God innovation which allows teleportation via worm hole.
Darkseid’s opponent, Apocalypse, is no being to be trifled with. Born En Sabur Nur in Egypt, he is the first known mutant on Earth. Unlike most mutants, who tend to only have one power or, at least, powers that belong to some sort of category, En Sabur Nur was born with a host of abilities including incredible physical capabilities, strength, agility, and healing, along with incredible intelligence and some psionic capabilities. His abilities were quite formidable before he even entered the ship that would change his life forever. The ship belonged to a group of extraterrestrial beings known as the Celestials, incredibly advanced and powerful beings. The ship not only increased Apocalypse’s original powers to an incredible extent; it also granted him several new ones. Apocalypse possesses a multitude of powers, both physical and psychic. He possesses the ability to grow or shrink at will, and his strength increases proportionately as it grows. At his normal 7″ height, his strength surpasses that of the Hulk, as he was able to restrain him to the point that Hulk could not escape. If this was not already significant enough, this was after Bruce Banner had been magically separated from the Hulk’s being, meaning the Hulk was at the physically strongest he could be. Apocalypse also possesses significant levels of invulnerability, withstanding blows from Juggernaut, Hulk, and Colossus with little to no damage, and even withstanding a full scream of the Inhuman named Blackbolt, whose screams are more powerful than a nuclear warhead, unscathed. Apocalypse is also a psychic of incredible power, matching Onslaught while they were both on the Astral Plane. Despite his large size, he also possesses incredible agility, hitting Quicksilver while he was running at full speed. In addition to growth, Apocalypse has incredible control over his atomic structure. This allows him to mimic the powers of Mr. Fantastic in becoming malleable or increasing his density even further. Apocalypse is also endowed with a healing factor that is beyond that of Wolverine; he is able to return from being completely disintegrated and can reform his entire body from a drop of blood. Apocalypse, like Darkseid, is completely immune to aging and is effectively immortal. One of Apocalypse’s greatest abilities is his ability to control and project energy. Apocalypse is able to harness an extra-dimensional energy and project it as ambient plasma-like energy from his eyes or hands. The blasts from these are incredibly powerful, destroying Susan Richards’ (Invisible Girl) shields in one attack, knocking Colossus unconscious in a single blow, and, with enough charging up, disintegrate Wolverine and his adamantium skeleton entirely. Apocalypse can also manipulate and absorb the energy of others to increase his own power. He absorbed so much of Cyclops’ energy at one point that Cyclops was unable to use his powers for months. The extra dimensional source of Apocalypse’s energy powers is believed to be unlimited. Apocalypse can also teleport anything he desires along with him to anywhere he wants. He also possesses an incredible intellect, surpassing that of any of the great minds of the humans in the fields of genetics or bioengineering. Finally, and one of Apocalypse’s most powerful capabilities, is that his power is always increasing. In fact, the full extent of Apocalypse’s powers are still not known, even to him. In a reference to this, the mysterious time-traveler Kang the Conqueror had travelled back in time in an attempt to befriend and eventually control Apocalypse before he entered the Celestial ship, stating that he was going to control En Sabur Nur who would become the most powerful being in the universe.
Darkseid versus Apocalypse. In what is truly a battle of the titans, two of the most powerful beings in their universes will bring all their formidable powers to bear in finding out which being reigns supreme amongst tyrants. Darkseid would undoubtedly attempt to use his Omega Beams at first, and this would have one of a few effects on Apocalypse: it would hurt him somewhat, not effect him, or make him stronger due to his energy absorption. Apocalypse would undoubtedly follow suit and project his own energy at Darkseid. They would then engage in physical combat, and Darkseid, finding Apocalypse physically stronger, would enlarge himself, and Apocalypse would do the same. I think, match for match, Apocalypse comes out the winner in this incredible battle. I think Darkseid is more cunning whereas Apocalypse is more intelligent in terms of his bioengineering, and Apocalypse is physically stronger than Darkseid, unquestionably. Darkseid’s Omega Beams, as part of the Cosmic Source energy might be absorbable by Apocalypse, but this is not certain. I would have to say that Apocalypse would emerge victorious in what would be an incredible battle that would likely destroy whatever planet they are on.