American comic book publisher DC Comics was founded by National Allied Publications in 1934. The initials "DC" came from the company's popular series "Detective Comics" which featured Batman's debut and subsequently became part of the company's name. DC Comics is one of the largest and oldest American comic book companies. The majority of its publications take place within the fictional DC Universe and feature numerous culturally iconic heroic characters such as Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. The universe also features well-known supervillains who oppose the superheroes such as The Joker and Lex Luthor.