On the one hand, we have Saitama, the protagonist of the One-Punch Man series and a ridiculously overpowered character in his own right. On the other, we have DC Comics‘ Superman, arguably one the strongest comic book superheroes ever created. We are going to pit Saitama against Superman to determine who would win in a direct clash between these two powerful superheroes.
Superman would be able to defeat Saitama in a fight. It is a common misconception that Saitama could defeat anyone; that is true for his own universe, but in a comparative context – Saitama is more of a gag character than anything else. If you compare their powers and abilities realistically, Superman would definitely come out as the winner in this clash.
The rest of this article will further elaborate on the above-given answer, as we are going to compare Saitama and Superman in more detail. Through several categories, you are going to see who the stronger of the two is and why our answer is like it is, i.e., why Superman would ultimately be able to defeat Saitama in a direct fight.
Strength and durability
Saitama possesses immense physical strength, so much so that he is able to easily defeat monsters, machines, and criminals with a single punch, no matter how powerful, because Saitama is far too strong. Saitama can perform jumps over astronomical distances, such as when he returns to Earth from the Moon with a jump whose force he estimates to deploy according to the weak gravity.
His strength has no known limit. Even in the case of a powerful Dragon-level flail, Saitama can destroy it with a single blow as proven with Mutant, who himself had a chasm of power separating him from Bakuzan. Very few enemies like Boros were able to survive a single basic attack and continue the fight.
Superman’s exact strength is unknown, as his strength has varied over the years. However, the strength of it must go on the level of several megatons, at least. This makes Superman the strongest on planet earth and one of the strongest beings in the universe.
Superman has shown several examples of strength such as being seen lifting a huge pyramid, flying to mars without any effort, being able to move the earth away from the sun while a powerful cosmic entity was pushing her. More recently, he has been shown to be able to press the weight of the earth (approximately 6 trillion tons) for 5 days, while inside the Earth itself (and thus deprived of replenishing its solar energy reserves).
Just by reading this, we couldn’t really know who would win in this category, but taking into account that Saitama’s potential seems to be limited, but unknown, where Superman’s seems to be genuinely unlimited, we have to give Superman this point.
Points: Saitama 0, Superman 1
Saitama is blessed with spectacular speed. A ninja-like Speed-o’-Sound Sonic looks slow next to him. He is able to complete a 1500 meter course in an instant. Even Genos’ computerized targeting systems have difficulty tracking him. He can use his speed to run vertically along a building to save a piece of salmon he intended to eat for lunch. Even Boros in Meteoric Boost is slower than him. Its basic speed is already enough to avoid the saber attacks of the famous ninja Flashy Flash.
Superman is capable of enhanced reflex action and the ability to move at incredible speeds through sheer force of will, although he is not as fast as the Flash (Wally West). Even so, Superman can move as fast as light and is one of the fastest beings in the universe, and like others with the same speed, he is able to take advantage of his speed to perform super-fast movements, reactions, and processes.
He can use this power to disarm his opponents with or without enhanced reflexes, grab bullets or shrapnel, and run across great distances in seconds.
This category was also very difficult to determine as it is quite difficult to compare the speeds of characters in these two universes. Superman is not the fastest character in the DC Universe, while Saitama does seem to be the fastest in his universe; on the other hand, we have no clue how Wally West would do in Saitama’s universe. This is why we have decided to split the points.
Points: Saitama 1, Superman 2
Due to his incredible superhuman physical condition, Saitama is an extraordinarily powerful and dangerous fighter in close combat. After three years of intense training and fighting countless criminals, Kaijin, and evil organizations, he not only gained unparalleled power, but also developed a wealth of combat skills through combat experience.
Due to his boredom, he often uses poor attacks that lack finesse or flair; however, once serious, he becomes a very competent and cunning fighter. Saitama uses basic fighter moves and street fighting techniques to grab and knock down his enemies, having excellent battlefield awareness, and is able to read the moves of highly skilled warriors such as Boros and Garou, the former being a universal emperor. with centuries of experience and the latest a martial arts prodigy.
He has been trained by Wildcat in boxing, and by Mongul in the arts of fighting; Superman has fought and learned from Wonder Woman. He has also learned combat techniques like pressure points from Batman.
This was, likewise, a very difficult category to determine. Namely, Superman focuses mainly on his power in physical fights, although he has some formal martial arts training. Saitama, on the other hand, seems to focus more on the fighting aspect (because of his techniques), but it is questionable how good his martial arts skills actually are. This is why we ultimately split the points in this one as well.
Points: Saitama 2, Superman 3
Saitama has absolutely no energy projection skills. Objectively, Saitama’s superpowers are severely limited in their numbers, but he knows how to use the powers he has. Energy projection is something Saitama just cannot do and there is nothing for us to write about in this category as far as Saitama is concerned.
Superman’s energy projection skills include:
- Heat Vision: This is the ability to fire beams of intense heat at a target by looking at it. Visually, the power is usually represented as two beams of red light shooting from his eyes. These beams can be made invisible allowing Superman to use this ability without it being detected. His vision is so powerful that he can match the heat of a star. However, this ability has been shown to drain all of his power from his internal solar battery.
- Super-Breath: The ability to create hurricane-force winds just by blowing, and freeze the target with its breath. When Superman takes a breath his lungs compress the incoming gas. When this gas expands on exhalation, the sudden increase in the volume of the gas causes its temperature to drop proportionally with the size of this expansion.
- Super-Vision: He also possesses sight capable of seeing microscopically and/or telescopically, and visual, infrared, and ultraviolet capabilities. He is able to see the full spectrum. S.T.A.R. Laboratories have not yet fully defined how Superman has been able to use his powerful senses, part of it is believed to be due to his natural physiology.
Since Saitama has nothing to offer in this category, the point goes to Superman.
Points: Saitama 2, Superman 4
Saitama vs. Superman: Who wins?
The numbers are in, but this comparison has always been more than just the numbers. Namely, in order to fully comprehend why Superman would ultimately be able to defeat Saitama, we have to understand the very nature of their respective universes.
Namely, Saitama is – as it seems now – the strongest character in his respective universe and the whole concept seems to be based on that fact. He has fought some formidable foes, but he’s so overpowered that he defeated them all with ease.
On the other hand, Superman is arguably the strongest superhero in the history of Western comic books. He is a much more versatile character who has fought a wide range of difficult opponents; his crime-fighting career is much more diversified than Saitama’s and Superman’s rogues gallery includes many different villains who use different types of powers.
In that aspect, Superman has much more experience and has demonstrated a wider array of abilities than Saitama, which gives him the edge over the bald superhero.
But, you also have to note one additional thing – while Saitama may be the strongest in his own universe, in a comparative sense he is a mock superhero, a mere gimmick whose overpowered nature does cannot be realistically compared to any other system. This is why we had to approach this comparison from a different angle, and why – ultimately – Superman won this one.