An emblem is an abstract or representational pictorial image that represents a concept and in superhero fiction often represents a character or team, among other things.
Prior to superheroes, some pulp heroes had symbols to represent themselves.
- For Flash, a lightning bolt representing your speed.
- At first the Superman symbol was an S of his name, but later it was changed to be the Kryptonian symbol of hope.
- Hawkman and Hawkgirl obviously had a hawk as a symbol.
- The symbol of Wonder Woman changed between being the first letter of her two names and being the eagle symbol of the American flag (or being Zeus's eagle symbol).
- Groups like the Green Lanterns, the Fantastic Four and the X-Men are always the same symbol. (Railway lantern, number four and one X).
- The characters Zorro and Phantom leave their marks that are their symbols (skull and letter Z) on their opponents.