As part of this effort we focused some sophisticated data analysis tools on the world’s most interesting social network—the Marvel Universe. The result is what you see above: in each image, every node represents a character and each line represents a shared appearance between two characters (in some of the graphs, the thickness of the line corresponds to the number of shared appearances). Some cool things we’ve found:
- There are four big clusters of characters (you can see them in the different colored graphs above) which correspond to the X-Men, the Avengers, Spider-Man and Wolverine.
- Wolvie seems to have his own entourage independent of his teammates in the Avengers and the X-Men.
- There are about 10 other smaller clusters—in the high-res images linked below you’ll see groups corresponding to X-Factor Investigations, our cosmic heroes, teen heroes like the Runaways and Avengers Academy students and even Alpha Flight.
- The Ultimate Universe orbits the main Marvel Universe like a satellite (you can see it as a small spur on the right or left on most of the graphs above).
- The graph diameter (the furthest distance between any two characters) is 9 hops.
- The graph is relatively sparse (meaning many characters are not directly linked) with a density rating of .032.
- The average character has links to 41 other characters