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- The different oaths.
- The original, Alan Scott, had a rather pithy and poetic oath:
- The 1959 retool established the somewhat more impressive and much better-known oath, used by most of the Green Lantern Corps:"In brightest day, in blackest night
No evil shall escape my sight
Let those who worship evil's might
Beware my power—Green Lantern's light!"
- This one has a number of known variants
- Rot Lop Fan, whose species has no eyes and thus no concept of light or colour, chants an oath based around sounds and tones:"In loudest din or hush profoundMy ears catch evil's slightest sound.Let those who toll out evil's knellBeware my power— the F-Sharp Bell!"
- Jack T. Chance:Yowza.
- Kho, member of a genocidal race turned good and too badass for a last name:
- Sodam Yat, a Daxamite (who are like Kryptonians, but with a weakness to lead instead of Kryptonite) combines the Green Lantern and Sinestro oaths as the last surviving Green Lantern (and from the sounds of it, the last surviving Lantern of any colour) in the 30th century:In brightest day, through blackest night!Let those who try to stop what's right,Burn like my power— Green Lantern's light!
- Duck Dodgers (no, really):In blackest day or brightest nightWatermelon, cantaloupe, yadda yadda
- Hal Jordan is the Green Carebear
- Before the Corps was a thing, there was the ominous creed of the Manhunters:Our enemies fear the face of steelThe will to this cold visage annealsOurs is the face of justice revealed
- When taken over by Atrocitus, this was changed to:No guardian escapes the Manhunters!
- The Alpha Lanterns, who police the rank and file members:
- And the Alpha Lanterns also have a motto that combines that of the Corps and the Manhunters:"No Lantern escapes The Alpha Lanterns!"
- The Yellow Lantern/Sinestro Corps Oath:"In blackest day, in brightest night,
Beware your fears made into light
Let those who try to stop what's right
Burn like his power — Sinestro's might!"
- Naturally enough, Sinestro himself ends with "Burn like my power..." Later on, when Arkillo takes command, he replaces the last part with "Arkillo's might!"
- The Red Lanterns' oath:"With blood and rage of crimson red
Ripped from a corpse so freshly dead
Together with our hellish hate
We'll burn you all—that is your fate!"
- Green Lantern: The Animated Series tweaks it:
- Aya later tries to modify it so Razer won't feel bad about having to use the oath to recharge his ring. It doesn't work, but it's a good try.
- The Power of Love becomes somewhat more impressive with the Star Sapphire/Violet Lantern Corps:
- The Blue Lanterns:
- The Indigo Tribe's is in Fictionary but it still sounds poetically badass:
- And with the Blackest Night, we now have a creed for the Black Lanterns:
- During Blackest Night Larfleeze (the Orange Lantern) looks surprised when the other Lantern Corps are saying their oaths, as he hadn't thought of using one. So he creates his own oath:
- He later came up with a better one
- And Finally there's the white Lantern oath.In Brightest Day, and Blackest Night.
All darkness will dread my might.
Virtuous energy of life ignite.
Shine forth my power White Lanterns Light.
- Or alternatively
- And now there's the the Ultraviolet Lanterns, whose rings tap into suppressed emotions:
- In Dark Nights: Metal, an evil alternate Bruce Wayne who became a Green Lantern and calls himself Dawnbreaker has this.With darkness black, I choke the light!
No brightest day escapes my sight!
I turn the dawn into midnight!
Beware my power... Dawnbreaker's Might!
- "Dreams save us. Dreams lift us up and transform us. And on my soul, I swear — until my dream of a world where dignity, honor and justice becomes the reality we all share — I'll never stop fighting. Ever."
- "There is a right and a wrong in this universe. And that distinction is not hard to make."
- The iconic "I fight for Truth, Justice and The American Way."
- The Pledge of a Superman, from World's Finest Comics #213:I will use this power for all the good that can be done...
To work for peace...
To encourage virtue...
And above all, to preserve life, in all its forms...
Or failing in that, to give up this power...forever!
- Krypto the Superdog was part of the Space Canine Patrol Agency, whose slogan is as follows: "Big Dog! Big Dog! Bow wow wow! We'll crush evil... Now, now, now!" If "big dog, big dog, bow wow wow" sounds anticlimactic, it's because it's a Shout-Out to the Yale chorus ("Bulldog, bulldog, bow wow wow...")
- The Button reveals one for the Wayne family, delivered by Thomas Wayne:Thomas: Sometimes we fall, son. But always remember, Waynes never stay down. We rise.
- "Darkseid is." Understated, but given everything that it implies, it's pretty effective. Introduced in the JLA book Rock of Ages.Announcer On your knees for the Master!The hour has come! HE has come!Who is beyond good and evil?Who is the prophet of Anti-Life?Who is the Rock and the Chain and the Lightning?All powerful! All unforgiving! All conquering!WHO IS YOUR NEW GOD NOW AND FOREVER?Darkseid: Darkseid is.
- In Final Crisis, Darkseid gets a new Badass Creed. He only uses it once, but it qualifies because he says it using the possessed bodies of billions of people.Darkseid: I. Am. The. New. God.All is one in Darkseid. This mighty body is my church.When I command your surrender, I speak with three billion voices.When I make a fist to crush your resistance. It is with three billion hands.When I stare into your eyes and shatter your dreams. And break your heart. It is with six billion eyes!Nothing like Darkseid has ever come among you: Nothing will again.I will take you to a hell without exit or end. And there I will murder your souls!And make you crawl and beg! And die! Die! Die for Darkseid!
- Darkseid's Suicide Jockeys as seen in Orion have:Death is life's objective!
Death is life done right!
So lock an' load!
Lets hit the road!
The Jockeys ride tonight!
- The Flash: "My name is Jay Garrick/Barry Allen/Wally West/Bart Allen. Who am I? I'm the Flash, the Fastest Man Alive."
- Barry declares what it means to be The Flash as he runs himself to death saving the entire multiverse in JLA Incarnations #5:"Light calling to me...drawing me forward...what is it? I hear it in my heart.The essence of what I am. The source and the end. Speed itself.It reminds me. What I stand for. What the League stands for.My life doesnt matter. I can save them. If I just let go...and then I am in it and I am a part of it and I am everywhere.I am the lightning and I am reaching out.And there are no accidents!''
- Barry declares what it means to be The Flash as he runs himself to death saving the entire multiverse in JLA Incarnations #5:
- The Golden Age Sandman, as revived in the 1990's Sandman Mystery Theatre series: "None can escape the Sandman's dark dream."
- He also used to leave a poem on his defeated opponents: "There is no land beyond the law / Where tyrants rule with unshakable power! / 'Tis but a dream from which the evil wake / To face their fate, their terrifying hour!"
- The third Blue Beetle, Jaime Reyes, has a short one when he goes off to show what happens when you mess with his planet: "Escarabajo vamonos!" note
- Jeph Loeb's version of Batman has: "I made a promise on the graves of my parents to rid this city of the evil that took their lives."
- Frank Miller creates one for The Question, in The Dark Knight Strikes Again. The Question describes the problems facing the world, the threat of the conspiracy at the heart of it, and his intention to "document every foul lie", so that the truth will one day be exposed and mankind will be saved...ending with this little gem:It is not in my power to effect the change. I haven't the might. I am not the answer.I am only The Question.
- Wonder Woman, during Gail Simone's run:"Keep faith. Trust to love. Fight with honor. But fight to win."
- In Wonder Woman: Warbringer the Amazons have an oath about protecting the world from evil they have to make to become Amazons, just like in the Golden Age of Comics. Also just like in the Golden Age this oath is only alluded to and described rather than given to the reader; however the oath of loyalty Amazons make to their Amazon sisters is given:Sister in battle, I am shield and blade to you. As I breath, your enemies will know no sanctuary. While I live, your cause is mine.
- Wolverine's "I'm the best there is at what I do — but what I do best isn't very nice." The second part is frequently dropped.
- Spider-Man has the rather thoughtful "With great power comes great responsibility."
- In "The Oath", Doctor Strange manages to make the Hippocratic Oath badass:"I have sworn many oaths in my day, to every being from Hoggoth to Watoomb. But the first oath I swore was the Hippocratic. 'I will prescribe regimens for the good of my patients, according to my judgement and ability, and I will do so at any cost.' "
- "I am the Iron Fist. I stand before the unstoppable hordes...and I hold them back. That's what I do. What I've always done. I am the Iron Fist. I hold back the storm...When nothing else can."
- In Civil War, Captain America gives us:"Doesn't matter what the press says. Doesn't matter what the politicians or the mobs say. Doesn't matter if the whole country decides that something wrong is something right.This nation was founded on one principle above all else: The requirement that we stand up for what we believe, no matter the odds or the consequences. When the mob and the press and the whole world tell you to move, your job is to plant yourself like a tree beside the river of truth, and tell the whole world — "No, YOU move."
- Elfquest has the Wolfrider Creed: "Let Danger come! Let Foes invade! Let Thunder and Skyfire roar! We are Wolfriders!"
- Judge Dredd, "I am the Law!"
- "We are the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. We strike hard, and fade away... into the night."
- Matt Wagner's "Grendels" have this Oath of Obedience (taking at least one riff from one of the other Badass Creeds on this page):"With Orion's sword the hunter arose and conquered the world with fury and graceIn him was I born, in him shall I die, in him shall I lose name, station and faceDeath over weakness, death over despair, death over personal gainDeath over dishonor, death over undeath, death over the fire with no flameAll this I pledge thee O Grendel, Great Khan, to serve and protect over death's endless tideWith your word in my heart, your eyes in my face and your tooth in my hand, by my side"Vivat Grendel!
- The Wreckers from The Transformers (IDW):Wreck and Rule!.Lost cause? Of course it's a lost cause! That's why we're here!.
- Usagi Yojimbo: "A Ninja's duty in life is death!"
- Jesse Custer learned his from his father, cribbed from John Wayne;John Custer: Don't take no shit off fools. Judge a person by what's in 'em, not how they look. An' you do the right thing. Be one of the good guys. 'Cause there's way too many of the bad.
- Frank Drake of the Nightstalkers distills the entirety of Silver Age Superhero philosophy into four words. Do good. Fight evil.
- Archie Adventure Hero "The Fly" featured this promise: I, The Fly, do solemnly swear that nothing shall keep me from fulfilling my sacred vow...to erase crime from the face of the earth!
- In the Sonic The Hedgehog series, but most commonly the Archie comics, theres always a badass creed used to summon upon the power of one of the emeralds, usually the Master Emerald, for a specific request, usually along the lines of "The servers are the seven chaos emerald, chaos is power, enriched by the heart. The controller is the one who unifies the chaos." followed by the request. The badass-ness of this is shown in its full height at the end of the Enerjak arc, as Knuckles and Doctor Finitevus both channel the energy of the Master Emerald and prepare to strike the other down with one energy charged punch, in a way that seems to invoke the feeling of a battle between Hal Jordan and Sinestro.Knuckles: The servers are the seven chaos...
Finitevus: The servants are the seven chaos...
Knuckles: Chaos is power, enriched by the heart...
Finitevus: Chaos is power, controlled by my will...
Knuckles: The controller exists to unify the chaos!
Finitevus: The controller exists to enslave the chaos!
- In The Metabarons, Bushitaka, the Castaka family code. It allows victory, or death in pursuit of victory as the only possible choices for a warrior. At any cost.
- The Oath of the Skull from The Phantom is an iconic classic in the genre.The Phantom: I swear to devote my life to the destruction of piracy, greed, cruelty, and injustice, in all their forms, and my sons and their sons shall follow me.