So many superheroes have gained their powers as a result of chemical mishaps that it was only a matter of time before someone thought to unite super-beings and chemistry in a single piece of art. Behold the supremely clever Heroic Table of the Elements.
This creation is the work of Scottish illustrator Matt Cowan, and though it's definitely not a comprehensive look at every single superhero ever, it does cover most of the major bases.
Superheroes are grouped (mostly) according to their affiliations. The X-Men are in blue, the Justice League in tan, the Avengers in red, the Fantastic Four in orange, the Watchmen in light brown and Neil Gaiman's the Endless in purple. Heroes that tend to fly solo are grouped together in green, and down at the bottom you'll find a whole host of supervillains.
Cowan also used the borders of each square to say something about the biological makeup of each hero. The year of creation is featured for every character, and Cowan even gave each of them a power ranking so you'll have something to debate with everyone else who reads the chart. (For example: Iron Man and the Hulk are on equal footing, but Thor is more powerful than both of them. Discuss.)
Check out a larger version of the chart below (click to embiggen). We're very impressed with Cowan's ability to distill all this information down into a single nifty chart, but there's just one error we have to point out in the tradition of comic book geek nitpicking: It's Spider-Man, not Spiderman.