Russia has been on our mind a lot becuase...
...well, there was the final trailer for the Russian superhero film Guardians released earlier today.
Yeah. That Guardians trailer. That's why we're thinking of Russia today.
That's the ticket.
Anyway, here's our list of the best Russian superheroes. Maybe we'll take a separate list of villains later in another list, since during the Cold War there were some pretty fun Russian villains created.
Let us know if your favorite didn't make the list in the comments below.
HONORABLE MENTION: KILOWOG
Okay, so Kilowog isn't Russian.
For a while in the '80s, though, Kilowog subscribed to Soviet-style communism.
The reason was simple: on his planet, Bolovax Vik, the inhabitants enjoyed a collective consciousness. It was through this shared mental bond that they all "survived" inside of a power battery after their deaths, and Kilowog's version of being the "last son" of a dead world was a bit different than Superman's or even Lobo's.
When he was briefly (lost? Stranded? Kidnapped? The details are vague) in Russia right around Green Lantern Corps #208 (pictured), he decided that, at least in philosophy, communism was much closer to his race's general philosophy than the American way of life he had been living for a while at that time.
This, as you might expect, led to quite a row with Guy Gardner, who was particularly at the time a rah-rah, pro-Reagan conservative.
After appearing (at least in cameos) in a number of films, Colossus finally got to be...y'know...RUSSIAN in Deadpool last year.
Piotr Rasputin was part of the second generation of X-Men, many of whom came from outside the United States, who appeared in Giant Size X-Men #1 in 1975. Along with Storm (Africa), Nightcrawler (Germany) and Wolverine (Canada), the Russian Colossus joined the team and quickly became one of their most reliable members.
Over decades, Colossus would briefly go bad, die, and come back, but his relationships with Kitty Pryde and his sister Illyana kept him consistent.
You know how in Iron Man 2 one of the conflicts was the idea that the government wanted Tony to turn over his suits and designs so they could make an army of Iron Men?
Well, that's basically what the Rocket Reds were: heavily-armed, heavily-armored, flying sentries who worked for the Kremlin.
One of them, Dmitri Pushkin, was a member of the Justice League International under Maxwell Lord during the period in the late '80s and early '90s when the team fell under United Nations mandate.
Likely the most recognizable Russian superhero in American comics -- and definitely the one most people would associate with Russia, due to her backstory -- Black Widow started out as a villain but evolved into an antihero and has proven herself time and time again to be one of the most capable heroines in the Marvel Universe.
Like Animal Man, Leonid Kovar (whose father, Konstantin Kovar, is the villain played by Dolph Lundgren in Arrow's flashbacks this year) gained his powers after a crashed spaceship exploded right near him.
Red Star (also sometimes known as Starfire) is a fiercely patriotic Russian superhero whose powers include super-strength, speed, and pyrokinesis.
You didn't think we'd forget this guy, did you?!
Cosmo is a former test animal of the Soviet Space Program. He was launched into Earth's orbit but drifted off into space during the 1960's and ended up at Knowhere, becoming mutated, gaining heightened intelligence and the ability to communicate telepathically (with a thick Russian accent).
Cosmo is the security chief to Knowhere station.