Follow TV Tropes

Following

Atomic Superpower

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/firestorm_dc_comics_stein_raymond_4.jpg
The power of the atom.

"My name is Captain Atom. As in A-bomb...as in nuclear fission...as in...the end of the world."
Nathaniel Adam, Captain Atom: Armageddon #1
Advertisement:

When nuclear radiation isn't just the source of your strength, it is your strength. Characters with Atomic Superpower have their powers themed around various atomic phenomena such as radiation, nuclear energy, or quantum mechanics. Abilities such as these tend to be incredibly powerful and may be wielded recklessly.

Compare I Love Nuclear Power, for when nuclear radiation is simply the source of one's powers— the two can overlap, but often don't. This is not to be confused with a powerful country with nuclear weapons.


Advertisement:

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Coppelion: Mana's body is constantly leaking radiation making her an "Instant Death" Radius for non-Coppelion living beings.
  • Darker Than Black: Hei's powers appear of electricity manipulation is revealed to just be one manifestation of his abilities. His true power is manipulating matter at a quantum level. When he's in the Gate, he can basically restructure everything around him.
  • Fairy Tail: One of Wall Eehto's attacks is creating an Etherion Blast by utilizing nuclear fusion in a confined magical field to deliver a powerful blast.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist: After Father consumes The Godly Being in his quest to become a perfect being he gains the power of nuclear manipulation, which he demonstrates by creating what he calls a sun in the palm of one's hand.

    Comic Books 
  • The DCU:
    • The first issue of Batman and the Outsiders featured the Nuclear Family, a supervillain team of androids with powers all based around radiation. They were created by a scientist named Dr. Eric Shanner who wanted to bring attention to the dangers of radiation after his family was killed by careless mistakes that he made in his nuclear science experiments.
    • Captain Atom has powers tied into the Quantum Field, allowing him to control tremendous amounts of energy.
    • Firestorm can absorb radiation and nuclear fallout, transmute elements at the atomic level and fire nuclear "fusion blasts" (concussive/destructive nuclear energy blasts).
    • Volume 2 of R.E.B.E.L.S. has Wildstar, who was transformed into a being of antimatter by Vril Dox, who promised her the power to fly. She wears a containment suit which allows her to fly by channeling energy to form wings. (Based on, but in-universe preceding, Wildfire below.)
    • Supergirl has the villain Reactron, who can generate radiation from his body which he can use for concussive blasts. He is also equipped with a heart made of a gold Kryptonite variant, which allows him to render a Kryptonian powerless for 15 seconds.
    • One of Superman's foes is Neutron, a being composed of nuclear energy.
    • Legion of Super-Heroes has Wildfire who is composed of anti-matter energy. There is also the villain Radiation Boy who originally auditioned for the Legion but was rejected because he could not control the radiation emitting from his body.
    • Wonder Woman (1942): Atomia's powers are rather ill defined but following her Brainwashing for the Greater Good she somehow uses atomic radiation to help heal disabled children.
  • Doctor Solar is an Expy of Captain Atom and can control atomic and subatomic energy.
  • Marvel Universe:
    • Avengers Academy has Hazmat, whose power generates radiation from her body. She has to wear a containment suit to keep from killing anyone next to her.
    • X-Men: Jubilee's power is to detonate matter on a subatomic level. Since she is a pacifist, she settles for using her powers in a more harmless manner.
    • The Incredible Hulk: X-Ray of the U-Foes was transformed into a living field of quasi-solid radiation.
    • One of The Avengers' enemies is Chen Lu, a.k.a. the Radioactive Man, who can manipulate high levels of radiation for various effects. Reginald Hudlin's run on Black Panther introduced a Russian villain with the same moniker and powers.
    • The Defenders: Sergei Krylov exposed Tania Belinskaya to cobalt radiation and a nuclear explosion, which resulted in her gaining the ability to generate, store, and release massive amounts of nuclear energy.
    • Fantastic Four: Frankie Raye was infused with energies from Galactus, which allow her to manipulate cosmic energy in the form of stellar fire. Her entire organic carbon-based body was transformed to accommodate the nuclear energies that course through her. These energies make her the humanoid equivalent of a miniature sun.
  • PS238: Suzie Finster, who has nuclear radiation generation abilities, and can use it for Flight.
  • Thorgal: Jolan (and other Atlanteans) have this power, as Jolan's mentor Tanatloc demonstrates by transforming a rose from thin air by rearranging individual atoms with his mind. Jolan, lacking training with it, mostly uses it to disintegrate incoming weapons.

    Films — Animation 
Advertisement:

    Films — Live-Action 

    Literature 
  • Worm: The Behemoth's main power is control over all types of energy. This includes nuclear energy, which it mostly uses to irradiate the area around it.
    • Ward: Tritium of Advance Guard becomes radioactive whenever she activates her Flying Brick powers, forcing her to be benched most of the time.

    Live-Action TV 

    Tabletop Games 
  • Champions:
    • Supplement Enemies II. Radium participated in Project Sunburst, in which a nuclear device detonated and bathed him in intense radiation. Among other powers, he received the ability to shoot an 8d6 radiation energy blast.
    • Supplement Enemies III
      • The supervillain Beamline can fire particle beams from each hand: electrons from his right hand, positrons from his left. When the beams intersect, there is a matter/antimatter explosion.
      • Starseer is a villain who can fire a powerful blast of cosmic rays that render the target unconscious.
  • Promethean: The Created: The Zeka lineage of Prometheans are constructed from the bodies of radiation poisoning victims. They're healed by radiation exposure and can learn nuclear-themed Transmutations, including creating magical tumours, controlling and mutating insects, and setting off miniature nuclear blasts. As they live in constant pain and suffer a Superpower Meltdown if they ever succeed in becoming human, they're very much Blessed with Suck.

    Video Games 
  • Fallout 3: The "Nuclear Anomaly" perk makes you explode like a mini-nuke every time your health reaches <20, while you regenerate Hit Points and get purged of radiation. It's widely considered an Awesome, but Impractical perk.
  • Persona has a Nuclear element, which is represented by the Frei line of spells.
    • Persona mixed Nuclear and Almighty together, as the typically Almighty Megido line was turned to Nuclear. While they're not unblockable, Nuclear spells tend to deal more damage than average. The resident specialist is Yukino Mayuzumi.
    • In Persona 2, Nuclear skills are almost always used in tandem with Fire skills. Unlike most spells that only target one enemy (unless they have the Ma- prefix), these ones target multiple enemies by default. The specialists, other than the returning Yukino, are brothers Tatsuya and Katsuya Suou, who are also Fire users.
    • The Frei line returns in Persona 5, now independent from any other elements. While they now lack their high-damage, multiple target properties (now they need the Ma- prefix for the latter), they have the ability to deal Technical damage to any target suffering from a status effect, once again setting them apart from other element types. The party's specialist is Makoto Nijima.
    • Averted with Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne's Freikugel (which is not part of Persona). While it has Frei in its name, that spell is Almighty and there no Nuclear element in the game.
  • Touhou Project: Utsuho Reiuji can control nuclear fusion. To really drive the theme home, she has a device on her right arm which resembles a nuclear control rod.

    Western Animation 
  • Ben 10:
    • Ben 10: Ultimate Alien: NRG is a new alien form Ben gains who is a being of living radioactive energy. He wears a lead containment suit and can fire blasts of energy at will. NRG is also very hot himself, and not a form Ben can use for very long without exposing his friends to dangerous levels of radiation.
    • Atomix, a robot alien introduced in Ben 10: Omniverse, is an example of this trope and I Love Nuclear Power. He can create or manipulate atomic or nuclear energy using his hands and is highly powerful to the point of being a Story-Breaker Power. Incidentally, he fused with Reality Warper Alien X in a Fusion Dance to create Atomic-X, which was Awesome, but Impractical and had the disadvantages of both Atomix and Alien X.
  • The Captain Planet and the Planeteers villain Duke Nukem has these powers, making him the only truly superpowered villain in the show (aside from Gaia's Evil Counterpart Zarm).

Alternative Title(s): Nuclear Superpower

Top