Top 10 Times Superman Went Beast Mode

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Top 10 Times Superman Went Beast Mode

VOICE OVER: Callum Janes
Superman is super-pissed! For this list, we'll be looking at times the most powerful man in the DC Universe gave into his inner fury and didn't hold back, specifically with his on-screen appearances. Our countdown includes “Man of Steel”, “Zack Snyder's Justice League”, “Justice League Unlimited”, and more!
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Top 10 Times Superman Went Beast Mode


Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Times Superman Went Beast Mode.

For this list, we’ll be looking at times the most powerful man in the DC Universe gave into his inner fury and didn’t hold back, specifically with his on-screen appearances.

What was your favorite savage Superman moment? Any we missed? Let us know in the comments!

#10: Clark Stands Up to a Bar Patron

“Man of Steel” (2013)
Just because Superman is invincible doesn’t mean he’s not prone to getting a little ticked off. It was in his best interest to lay low at his bar job. But boy-scout couldn’t just stand by while this drunk truck driver harassed his co-worker. After he tries to calmly diffuse the situation, the man attempts to shove Clark, but completely bounces off him. With gritted teeth, Clark is pulled away. But when the bar patron leaves the bar, he finds a little surprise waiting for him: his truck impaled on some electrical lines.

#9: Killing Brainiac

“Smallville” (2001-11)
When you’re a teenager, it can be tough to manage your emotions. But add to that superpowers and a psychotic supervillain, and you’ve got a recipe for some serious mayhem. As Brainiac is cornered by teenage Superman, the maniac teases him, knowing that whatever he does, he’ll have the last laugh. In a fit of rage, Clark sends him flying into an electrical grid. He then shoves cables through his chest, frying the villain from the inside out. He didn’t just want to finish Brainiac, he wanted him to suffer.

#8: Taking Over Metropolis

“Batman: The Brave and the Bold” (2008-11)
Kryptonite can’t only remove the Man of Steel’s powers. With a color change, this material can wreak arguably worse havoc. During “Battle of the Super-Heroes!”, Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen are tricked by Lex Luthor into exposing Superman to Red Kryptonite. This drastically changes his personality to that of a sadistic, heartless, grade-A meanie. He tries to kill Toyman, disowns Krypto the Superdog, and becomes the self-proclaimed King of Metropolis. He completely disregards and actively seeks to kill his friends, but Batman manages to stop him before he can do too much damage.

#7: Superman Awakens

“Zack Snyder's Justice League” (2021)
In perhaps the most anticipated moment in the Justice League movie, Aquaman, Wonderwoman, Flash, Cyborg and Batman all join forces to resurrect a dead Kal-El to prepare for SteppenWolf’s invasion. But as he wakes up, he’s got a little more than the morning krankies. Completely turning against his allies, Superman pummels everyone in the team, dropping them one by one, completely outmatching their abilities. With Batman being the last left standing, Sups drops him down to size with some devastating heat vision which not even the Bat’s gauntlet can fully absorb. It’s only when Lois Lane arrives that he’s able to snap out of his raging state. Otherwise, things might have gotten a bit out of hand.

#6: Clark Kent vs. Evil Superman

“Superman III” (1983)
Superman breaks bad AGAIN! After being exposed to synthetic Kryptonite, Superman gets drunk and starts wreaking havoc. When the good-natured Clark Kent splits from him, things start to get serious. The two duke it out, dealing savage superpowered blows to each other. What’s particularly notable about this moment is that while we expect Evil Superman to get savage, his good side doesn’t hold back either, tossing his dark counterpart into a pool of acid! Eventually, Kent gets the upper hand and chokes out his other self, allowing the two to fuse and become whole again.

#5: Superman vs. Doomsday

“Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” (2016)
While the battle between the Dark Knight and Man of Steel was an epic watch, it wasn’t until Superman faced Doomsday that he truly unleashed his power. Trading blow for blow, he rockets the hellish creature into space to get blasted by a couple of nukes. Picking up the same Kryptonite weapon that weakened him, Clark drives it into Doomsday, but not enough to kill him. Kent gets impaled, but to finish the job, he draws himself closer so he can plunge the spear deep into the monster, ending both of them for good. It’s a phenomenal moment of absolute badassery.

#4: Killing General Zod

“Man of Steel” (2013)
Many stories about this invincible hero tend to be more about moral choices than overcoming the odds. As a result, going beast mode in this entry didn’t mean losing his temper, but breaking the one rule that separates him from his enemies. Kal-El gets General Zod in a headlock, but Zod is about to kill a trapped family and Superman faces a difficult decision. In a move that proved controversial, Superman crosses a line that he never thought he would. He gives in and savagely breaks his fellow Kryptonian’s neck, leaving him lifeless on the floor. Superman may have saved lives, but he had to dig into a dark place to do it.

#3: Superman Crushes Zod’s Hand & Throws Him Into a Pit

“Superman II” (1980)
Christopher Reeve’s portrayal of the hero was more optimistic and less edgy than more recent interpretations. This is why Superman taking down his enemies when they’re helpless seems so darkly out of character. After cornering him in the Fortress of Solitude, Zod orders Superman into a crystal chamber, hoping to expose him to Red Sunlight and remove his powers. However, Superman planned for this. He reversed the process, exposing his enemies while keeping himself safe, leaving them entirely powerless. He crushes Zod’s hand with an iron grip and sends him falling into an endless pit, his posse joining him shortly after. Afterward, Kent can’t help but smirk as it all came together.

#2: Superman vs. Darkseid

“Justice League Unlimited” (2004-06)
Since Superman is so powerful, it can be hard to know if he’s using his full capabilities. That wasn’t in question during the acclaimed animated series “Justice League Unlimited” when Kal-El comes face to face with the Lord of Apokolips. Lecturing him about how delicate his world is, the Dark God starts to realize what he’s gotten himself into as our red and blue protector sends shockwaves across the city. Here we as the audience get a glimpse of what a pissed-off Superman looks like!

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Clark Kills Titan, “Smallville” (2001-11)
Young Superman Impales Titan with His Own Weapon

Superman vs. Zod First Fight, “Man of Steel” (2013)
Clark Rages as the Kryptonians Harm His Mother

Superman & Trigon vs. Darkseid, “Justice League Dark: Apokolips War” (2020)
With Everyone Dying Around Him, He Holds Nothing Back

#1: Superman’s Rampage

“Superman vs. The Elite” (2012)
Ever wonder what would happen if Superman lost it? Enter Manchester Black and his team: The Elite. This superhuman gang thinks that killing is the best way to deliver justice and keep the peace. Our boy-scout disagrees and the two come to blows. Superman is sent into a seizure by Black’s psychic abilities and then blasted into oblivion… Or so it seems. He takes out the team one by one, declaring that killing IS the answer after all. He even burns out part of Black’s brain. Fortunately, it was all a trick to isolate and remove their powers. Well, except Black’s lobotomy; that was real. And now we know that if Superman gave in to his darker instincts, no one would stand a chance.
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