8. Black Lightning (DC Entertainment)
First Appearance: Black Lightning #1 (1977)
Creators: Tony Isabella, Trevor Von Eeden
Black Lightning might not have the most original name, or the most interesting backstory, but he was one of DC’s first prominent black characters that wasn’t a Green Lantern.
Born Jefferson Pierce, Black Lightning became a fixture in the larger DC Universe, joining the Outsiders and the Justice League. His solo books never lit up the sales charts or revolutionized the superhero genre, but as part of a larger team, Pierce grew into his own, and remains a tribute to DC’s progressive views.