Marvel’s character base is incredibly large. We’ve seen all kinds of powers, from magic, physical strength, mutations to incredible superspeed features. We know that some characters can even travel at or above the speed of light, but it’s not as easy to figure out who is the fastest of them all.
Here’s a list of the 30 fastest Marvel characters ranked from slowest to fastest. Characters who use only teleportation aren’t considered on the list, as it’s not really speed. Omnipotent beings like the One Above All, the Beyonder, and others are also excluded because they can be at any point in space at any given moment, so we can’t count that as speed as well. Let’s dig in.
Whizzer, aka Robert Frank, first appeared in the U.S.A. Comics #1. His biggest superpower is his super-speed, which he received after getting injected with the blood of a mongoose. He took the name Whizzer and worked as a superhero for a short time before giving it up and disappearing.
He reappeared later, briefly fighting, then working for the Avengers, but not for long. When he’s well-rested, the Whizzer could reach 100 miles per hour and keep the speed up for about an hour before exhausting himself. It’s an incredible speed for human standards, but nowhere near the fastest Marvel character ever.
29. Triathlon (3-D Man)
The 3-D Man’s real name is Delroy Garret Jr., first appearing in Avengers Vol.3 #8. Delroy was an Olympic athlete who received the strength, durability, and speed equal to three times as much as a peak human athlete could have. Due to his Olympic past, he chose the name Triathlon but later changed it to 3-D Man (like that’s any better).
He fought alongside the Avengers several times and was shown to be capable of reaching a max speed of around 105 miles per hour. It’s only slightly more than the Whizzer, but his superhuman stamina separates him from Robert Frank, as the 3-D man can keep this speed for several hours if needed.
Hercules is a Marvel character taken from Greek mythology, like many others. He has the same traits as the mythical Hercules, having incredible superhuman strength and durability.
It’s that strength that allows him also to run extremely fast. In Thor #126, we saw Hercules reach speeds well over 100 miles per hour, and I highly doubt it was his top speed.
Still, superspeed isn’t his main trait, so I can’t put Herc anywhere near the top of the list. Although there are many characters much faster than him – even among the Greek gods – Hercules’ speed is still quite impressive, granting him a spot on the list.
Samuel Wilson, aka the Falcon, first appeared in Captain America #117 in 1969 as Cap’s loyal sidekick. While Sam is only human and doesn’t have superhuman speed in his arsenal, his suit and wings make him an incredible threat, which he had shown on countless occasions, even in the MCU.
The jetpack-powered wings also allow Falcon to travel at incredible speeds. Much like a real falcon, when he soars downwards with his wings spread, Sam can reach speeds up to a whopping 250 miles per hour. Pretty good for a common human, right?
26. Black Racer
The Black Racer’s real name is Ariana Saddiqi, and she first appeared in Captain America Vol.1 #337. Unlike many other characters on the list, Ariana was a villain – one of the members of the Serpent Squad.
While Ariana is quite fast, even by superhuman standards, Captain America single-handedly outclassed her and the entire Serpent Squad. That would mean she is nowhere near the fastest character on the list.
It’s unknown what her top speed is, but she is fast enough to get invited to the galactic race organized by the Runner. Only the top speedsters in the galaxy get an invitation, so we must consider her one of the fastest. Although, she did get outclassed fairly early in the race depicted in Quasar #17.
Phyla-Vell first appeared in Captain Marvel Vol. 5 #16, and since her introduction, she’s gone by many different names and aliases. Phyla is of Kree origins but probably not as well-known as her father, Mar-Vell.
Phyla played a crucial role in defeating Annihilus during the Annihilation event. She took away the Quantum Bands from him, allowing Nova to destroy him once and for all. The Bands gave her – as they did for anybody wearing them – incredible energy-manipulating powers that Phyla could channel into achieving almost light-speed velocities.
There are two reasons she isn’t higher on the list, though. First, the Quantum Bands give superpowers (including speed) to anybody who’s wearing them. Second, Phyla isn’t as well-known for her speed as some other Kree – most notably, her father. She was a masterful combatant first and a speedster second.
Vision is a sentient android created by Ultron, which is, yeah, another sentient android. However, Vision is powered by the Mind Stone, which gives him much more power and control over his physical body and form.
That allows Vision to fly much faster than Ultron, as he can calculate and control his aerial movement incredibly well and fast. It’s said that Vis could reach over 700 miles per hour in his standard physical form, but well over 1100 miles per hour when he’s at a minimum mass.
23. Iron Man
Tony Stark probably couldn’t run faster than your average jogger, and yet, he’s on the list of the fastest Marvel characters ever. Why? Well, he’s Iron Man. His suits are so advanced that there are almost no limits to what they can do. Tony is such a genius that he equips and improves his Iron Man armor non-stop.
It’s unclear what the fastest Iron Man armor is, but even in the MCU, we’ve seen him reach Mach 3 velocities – three times the speed of sound or about 2300 miles per hour. That’s spectacular for superhumans, let alone a guy without any superpowers other than his genius mind.
And that’s not nearly the fastest that Iron Man ever traveled. Some of his specialized suits – like the Model 42 – possibly went well over 30 000 mph in the comics. Still, it’s the technology propelling him that fast, not Tony’s superpowers, so I believe this spot on the list is just about right.
Spitfire first appeared in Invaders #7 as Jacqueline Falsworth. Jacqueline received a blood transfusion from the Human Torch (one of the Fantastic Four members), giving her incredible super-speed.
While it’s unclear how fast she can go, it’s well over supersonic speeds. Spitfire can run so fast that her entire physiology had to change to deal with the sheer amount of energy needed to propel her that fast. Her metabolism became faster, bones stronger, and stamina much higher.
That’s what makes Spitfire so awesome – she can maintain her top speed for a long time.
We met Yo-Yo Rodriguez, aka slingshot in the Mighty Avengers #13. Yo-Yo was a part of the New Warriors, a secret task force that Nick Fury assembled to deal with various threats, including the fights against Skrulls, Hydra, and more.
Rodriguez got her super-speed from her father’s mutated DNA, but it’s unclear how fast she can go. It’s incredibly fast, though – much faster than the speed of sound, but there’s a catch. However fast Slingshot goes after she’s done running, she automatically gets pulled back to the spot where her run began. That’s probably why the name Yo-Yo suits her so well.
20. Speed Demon
As we’re breaking the top 20, ranking becomes much more difficult, as all the speedsters from now on have shown unfathomable velocities. The first character breaking the top 20 is Speed Demon, first appearing in Avengers Vol.1 #69.
He’s a villainous character who traded his work for the Grandmaster in exchange for his super-speed. Primarily, Speed Demon battled Spider-Man, and although he’s much faster than Spidey, he could never get around his awesome Spider-Sense.
Speed Demon can easily run at supersonic speeds, but what makes him special is his ability to run on water, along walls, and more. If you need more evidence that he’s one of the fastest in the galaxy, Speed Demon also participated in the Runner’s speedster race called the Galactic Marathon. The Demon lost but gave it a great run.
19. Captain Marvel
Numerous characters took on the Captain Marvel mantle, but Carol Danvers is the most popular. She first appeared in Marvel Super-Heroes #13, where she got her powers after getting mixed up with the Kree.
Carol can fly at Mach 3 for an unlimited amount of time, but that’s nowhere near her top speed. If she uses her cosmic binary powers, Captain Marvel can reach the speed of light. Because her powers are so strong and always breaking new barriers, we can’t be sure just how fast Danvers can get.
Thor is one of the mightiest superheroes ever created in Marvel comics. But, one of his superpowers that don’t get enough praise is his incredible super-speed. I’ll start with Thor without his beloved Mjolnir.
Thor was clocked to run well over 300 miles per hour when running. Depending on the storyline and the location where it takes place, Thor could probably run close to the speed of sound at his top speeds. However, if he’s using Mjolnir, then things change drastically.
Within the Earth’s atmosphere, thor usually travels around sonic speed, but he could fly much faster than that. Within the vacuum of space, though, Thor is unfathomably fast. He travels so fast that he can’t even be seen with the naked eye.
In Thor #185, the Asgardian flies over three times the speed of light – yes, light, and said to be able to go much faster than that, especially after he became the King of Asgard and gained even more powers. In Thor #393, Mjolnir was established to travel so fast that it transcends time and space.
Still, it’s Mjolnir, not Thor himself, so I decided to put the Asgardian at #19, but the fact is, he could potentially travel much faster than some of the characters who are in front of him on the list.
17. Whiz Kid
Whiz Kid first appeared in She-Hulk #4, and the girl never really wanted that superhero life. However, after she was forced to register as a superhuman, Whiz Kid decided to test her power limits, and the results were nothing short of spectacular.
She reached Mach 39 speeds – over 30 000 miles per hour – while running. Keep in mind; she was still a kid! Unfortunately, she died during the Secret Invasion event, so we’ll never know just how fast she could’ve gotten. Many argue that Whiz Kid could easily rival Quicksilver and other top-notch speedsters on Earth.
Speed is one of the Young Avengers, appropriately named after his main superpower – spectacular super-speed. Thomas Shepherd first appeared in Young Avengers #10 and instantly presented the phenomenal powers.
Already at such a young age, Speed can reach velocities over Mach 4 – and it probably isn’t even close to what he can do at a maximum speed. Of course, being a kid, Speed hasn’t reached his full potential yet.
Quicksilver matched his speed without really trying, but the fact that Speed can go over Mach 4 and still not be anywhere near to reaching his full potential grants him such a high spot on the list.
Aurora has spectacular super speed as her main mutant ability, like her brother, Northstar. They can channel kinetic energy into a single direction, making them a living projectile. Aurora and Northstar can move at the speed of light in a vacuum.
However, the nature of their powers and the way they work would cause damage to their body and the environment, so they never attempt to reach that kind of velocity.
Aurora had the same powers and abilities as Northstar, but she battled psychological problems and split personalities, so Dr. Langkowski restructured her molecular composition to aid the disorder. However, it weakened her powers, and she maxes out slightly above the speed of sound now, which is why she’s below her brother on this list.
Northstar’s first appearance came in the X-Men Vol.1 #120. Northstar and his sister Aurora are mutants with super speed, but they achieve it differently. Northstar becomes a human projectile, channeling crazy amounts of kinetic energy into one direction.
It’s believed that he could go way faster than he did so far in his comic book career. However, he holds back to avoid destroying the environment he’s in because such amounts of kinetic energy would result in a huge explosion. Also, his body probably couldn’t take going as fast as his powers would allow, but he could theoretically reach the speed of light.
13. Beta Ray Bill
Beta Ray Bill was first considered a monster, appearing in Thor Vol.1 #337. He’s an alien from Korbin whose consciousness and genetic code were transferred into a predator beast from their planet. He can move at nearly the speed of sound without any enhancements, but things get interesting quickly.
Beta Ray Bill encountered Thor and proved worthy of wielding Mjolnir, making him one of the few such beings in the entire universe. Later he fought Thor on Asgard to prove who’s the dominant being and bested the God of Thunder yet again. He received the Stormbreaker then and used it to travel across the galaxy and help everyone in need.
Since Beta Ray wields Stormbreaker now, it’s safe to assume he can move as fast as Thor can while wielding it. The fact that he bested Thor in battle is why I placed him higher on the list. We never saw him go beyond the speed of light, but seeing that he virtually has the same powers as Thor when wielding Stormbreaker, it’s safe to assume he could go beyond.
12. Captain Mar-Vell
As you can guess, Captain Mar-Vell is where Captain Marvel, aka Carol Danvers, got her name. He was an alien from Kree who mentored Danvers and helped save Earth and other planets across the galaxy on numerous occasions.
Mar-Vell was already known among the Kree for his strength and speed, but after his run-in with a godlike being named Zo, his powers have been furthermore enhanced after turning him into the most powerful Kree in existence. Mar-Vell could travel side-by-side with Spectrum, who can turn into pure energy and go at the speed of light. It’s possible Mar-Vell could go even faster.
Quicksilver first appeared in X-Men Vol.1 #4 as Pietro Maximoff, brother of Wanda, aka Scarlet Witch. The two mutants had completely different abilities – Pietro’s ability was spectacular superhuman speed. At first, his powers weren’t that impressive, but Quicksilver became so much faster and more powerful after the High Evolutionary experimented on him.
Pietro describes his powers as “living in a slow-motion world.” Not only his physical speed, but his mind also works so much faster than that of a normal human. He continually outdoes himself, and it’s almost impossible to determine how fast he can go.
Once, he ran an entire circle around the Earth in 92 seconds, around 974404 miles per hour, or a staggering 1280 Mach. He also outran a radio wave once, which moves at the speed of light, so it would mean Quicksilver can go superluminal at times. Who knows where his limits are?
Blur is one of those characters who started relatively mild, but he became more and more powerful as time passed. He lived on Earth-148611, but after his universe had been destroyed, Blur managed to find his way to Earth-616.
At first, he could reach around 300 miles per hour. Then, he could keep up with Quicksilver (albeit Marvel’s resident speedster didn’t quite give it his best). But, that was the Jeff Walters Blur. Another character had been introduced as Blur in the Heroes Reborn saga, and it seems that velocity was nothing compared to what Blur can do.
His name is Stanley Stewart, and right from the start, he displayed incredible abilities. He runs so fast that he vibrates beyond the speed of light, out of sync with time. Blur runs so fast that he relives some of his races from the past, breaking the time-space continuum. That’s incredible but dangerous as well.
Spectrum’s real name is Monica Rambeau, best friend of Carol Danvers. They both become Captain Marvel in the comics, but Monica later changes the mantle to Spectrum. Her newfound powers are just as amazing as Carol’s, if not even better.
Spectrum can’t run that fast. However, Monica can transform herself into any kind of electromagnetic energy – including light. That, of course, allows her to travel at lightspeed quite easily.
The ease at which she transforms reaches lightspeed and slows down without any damage to her body, or the environment is what puts her so high on this list. Still, it seems she can’t go beyond the speed of light, so I can’t place her higher on the list.
Wendell Vaughn was a security guard working for Stark Industries. He was tasked with protecting an artifact(s) called the Quantum Bands that hold incredible powers for anybody wearing them. After an attack from A.I.M., Vaughn decided to put on the Bands to protect them.
He did so but also realized the talent he possesses when wielding the Band’s powers. That’s when Wendell became Quasar, using the Quantum Bands to protect the Earth, and later, the universe. Similar to Spectrum, the Bands allow Quasar to turn into pure energy. Spectrum turns into electromagnetic energy, while Quasar turns into quantum energy.
That allows him to travel at unfathomable speeds, easily reaching the speed of light. However, the Quantum Bands allow him to disperse over time and space, making it appear as if he’s teleporting. That makes him faster than Spectrum. Hence, his placement is higher on the list.
The Olympian God of Speed, Hermes, first appeared in Thor #129. Although almost all Olympian Gods have super strength and super speed, Hermes destroys them when it comes to pure speed. His potential is seemingly limitless.
Usually, Hermes travels at Mach 4.6, or 1 mile per second, but that’s nothing compared to his top speeds. He traveled millions of light-years in merely a few seconds in Venus #7, putting him far, far beyond the speed of light. He might not be the fastest Marvel character ever, but he’s fast enough to compete with the fastest.
Robert Reynolds, aka Sentry, first appeared in Sentry #1 as a Canadian version of Captain America and Marvel’s answer to DC’s Superman. He ingested an experimental super-serum, but unlike Cap, his enhancement wasn’t slightly superhuman – Reynolds received the energy and power equivalent to “one million exploding suns.”
It’s unclear how strong he is, nor how fast he is. He needs to hold back all the time because his single punch could obliterate the Earth. Sentry traveled to the Sun and back in a few moments. He traveled from Earth to Saturn in seconds, maybe minutes. That’s way above the speed of light.
Even Thor – who can travel at-or-above light speed when using Mjolnir – felt disoriented with how fast Sentry was. And again, he has to hold back his power. That’s well worthy of such a high spot.
Several characters were called Nova, but Richard Rider is the most popular, the most powerful, and the fastest of them all. He has full access to the Nova Force, a vast source of energy he can use and channel as he sees fit.
Rider can easily travel beyond light speed. It’s scary even to think how fast he could go as the Human Rocket, seeing that Rider can channel as much Nova Force as he wants. He can also open up Star Gates, which are portals through space, allowing him to go through incredible distances on a whim.
Although he can break light speed with ease, Nove only does that when he’s far enough from any planet or other cosmic objects to avoid damaging and destroying them with his pure force.
4. Silver Surfer
Silver Surfer’s real name is Norrin Radd, an alien chosen by the almighty cosmic entity Galactus as his first herald. Galactus granted Norrin a fraction of his Power Cosmic – enough to make the Silver Surfer one of the most powerful beings in the universe.
Using his cosmic board, Surfer can reach speeds far exceeding light speed. That allows him to reach hyperspace – a dimension where the traditional laws of physics don’t apply. After his emancipation from Galactus, Surfer travels across the galaxy, helping wherever he can.
Silver Surfer’s speed dwarfed Nova, Beta Ray Bill, and even Quasar, granting him such a high spot on the list.
3. Adam Warlock
Adam Warlock is a spectacularly powerful character introduced in Fantastic Four Vol. 1 #66. Although he’s not a classic speedster, his incredible powers certainly grant him the Top 3 spot on this list. Warlock was a humanoid creature who rebelled against his creators, but his real powers came after a run-in with the High Evolutionary, who granted him the Soul Stone.
Warlock later decided to disperse the Stones across the galaxy, as their powers are too incredible when all together. Adam travels faster than the eye can perceive visual information in an atmosphere.
But, in space, he can not only travel faster than light – Adam Warlock can be everywhere in the universe at once. For that, Adam is well worthy of this spot.
Makkari is one of the Earth’s Eternals, humanoid beings created by the Celestials to protect planets where they’re situated. Makkari received an MCU introduction in the movie Eternals, but the movie version had the character in a female form.
In the comics, Makkari was completely obsessed with speed. He spent centuries in meditation, learning, and trying to find ways to increase his speed as much as possible. He broke light-speed, but he’s usually a bit under that level. However, I placed him so high on the list for two reasons.
First, he breaks these velocities not while flying but actually running. There aren’t many – if any – Marvel characters that could do that.
Second, he’s the only Marvel character ever to beat the #1 from this list in a race – a race that the #1 himself regularly organizes, between the galaxy’s top speedsters.
1. The Runner
Finally, the fastest Marvel character ever is Gilpetperdon, aka the Runer. He first appeared in Defenders #143 as a cosmic entity that revels in his freedom, running across the universe for millions of years, exploring and pursuing a goal of becoming the first being ever to see everything that exists in the universe.
He’s also one of the oldest beings ever (one of the Elders of the Universe) and the host of the Galactic Marathon, a race among the galaxy’s top speedsters – and he almost always comes out on top (no, he’s not cheating, he’s just that fast).
Runner’s powers are fueled with the Power Primordial, leftover energy from the Big Bang that allows Gilpetperdon to reach a point in the universe before he even decides that he wants to reach it. In that regard, he’s essentially faster than himself. The Runner’s speed is virtually limitless, which is why he’s the clear-cut #1 on this list.