One of the greatest rivals in DC Comics doesn’t come only from a man dressed as a bat and a psychotic clown, but also in the form of two incredibly powerful beings from another planet, the rival of Superman and Darkseid. In this brief list, we will be taking a look at these two titans and some of their most incredible battles from animated series and films. Despite the winner being Superman or Darkseid, here is to hope DC Animation and Warner Brothers will continue to produce more amazing brawls between the Man of Steel and the Lord of Apokolips.
I am God here
In Superman The Animated Series, we bear witness to Darkseid manipulating Superman into his personal lap dog. Even after a somewhat successful invasion of Earth in Season 2’s Apokolips… Now!, it was Season 3’s episodes Legacy that finally had the two go toe to toe. As Superman finally snaps out of the mind control of Superman, Superman makes his way to Apokolips to control the Dark God. As he makes his way through the Furies, the Man of Steel finally makes his way to Darkseid. As the battle ensues, Darkseid seems to have an advantage before our hero uses Darkseids omega beams against him and forces Darkseid to yield. Despite Superman’s victory, this is only round one.
Brainiac vs. Superman vs. Darkseid
The battle continues in the acclaimed animated series, Justice League. This time, the two come together when Brainiac requests the help of Darkseid to capture Superman or suffer the destruction of Apokolips. With the combined power of Darkseid and the technology of Brainiac, they are able to capture Superman so Brainiac may siphon his power and become the most powerful being in the universe. However, Darkseid betrays Brainiac and overrides his system with Apokoliptic technology. Just when all seems lost, the Justice League comes to save Superman and begin their final assault on Darkseid and Brainiac. Just after Darkseid defeats Orion. Superman makes sure Darkseid feels his full power and is defeated by his own plan. Round 2 begins, and the two gods once again brawl it out. Superman beats down Darkseid, and with the help of Batman, they are able to get away before Brainiacs fortress explodes with Darkseid still inside. But don’t be sold on this resolution yet… We still have round 3.
An Opportunity to Cut Loose
The final battle between the hero and villain in the DC Animated Universe with Justice League Unlimited. After Lex Luthor makes an attempt to resurrect Brainiac, instead brings Darkseid back to life. Now more powerful than before, Darkseid makes another attempt at overthrowing Earth. As Luthor’s followers and the Justice League team up to fight against the alien invaders, the Man of Steel is finally unchained. Fed up with Darkseid’s invasion, Superman finally understands just how much Darkseid can take, and with all the power Superman can muster, he unleashes his full might on Darkseid. Sending him through multiple buildings and plowing him through the ground. Darkseid manages to get an advantage on Superman using the Agony Matrix but is still foiled by the help of Lex Luthor and Batman. Although it teased of their possible return, it stills leaves Superman – 3, Darkseid – 0.
Like Hell I am!
In the feature film Justice League: War, League form together to defend the Earth, Darkseid makes his preemptive strike by removing the Man of Steel before making his move to overtake the planet. Thankfully Batman infiltrates Darkseids ship to locate Superman so they can end the battle and defeat the Dark God. As the League works together to fight the army of Parademons and Darkseid, Cyborg creates a Boom Tube to send the Dark God back to Apokolips, as the Justice League struggles to send him through the portal, the missing element arrives. Superman finally comes toe to toe with Darkseid in assisting the Justice League to finally put Darkseid through the boom tube. Setting up an entire universe of DC Animated films and setting the stage for Superman and Darkseids epic rivalry.
The incredible finale to the DC Animated Film Universe takes place in Justice League Dark: Apokolips War. After suffering many losses at the hands of Darkseid, Superman, Raven, and Constantine make a desperate attempt to stop once and for all. Raven finally unleashes her father Trigon so Constantine may absorb him and take the fight to the Dark God, Trigon instead finds a host in Superman. Now a Trigon-powered Superman battles against Darkseid for the fate of the future. While many might not consider this an offical Superman vs. Darkseid battle, it is still the Man of Steel that Trigon takes control of. SuperTrigon stomps out Darkseid, only for Superman to be saved by Lois Lane until her demise. Superman manages to fight off Trigon and face off against Darkseid himself. As the two come to blows, Superman doesn’t hold back and unleashes hell on the Dark God.
The Kryptonians vs. The Lord of Apokolips
Our final entry on the list comes from the Supergirl origin story told in Superman/Batman: Apocalypse. After Superman saves his cousin Kara from the mental grip of Darkseid, he brings her back to the Kent Farm to live. Just when we think the fight is over, Darkseid appears for one final battle against the Kryptonians. This time Darkseid isn’t here for Supergirl, he is here for the Man of Steel himself. But when Darkseid sends Superman above the Earth’s atmosphere, the battle continues between the Dark God and Supergirl. As a chaotic battle ensues on the Kent Farm, Darkseid manages to get an upper hand on Supergirl. And just when Kal-El believes his cousin to have been killed at the hand of his enemy. The two titans finish the battle and unlock their full potential on each other. Luckily when Kara is able to come too, they are both able to defeat the Lord of Apokolips. Despite it ending just like any other meeting between the hero and villain, this one manages to be one of the most intense and entertaining on our list.