Eight entrants have survived the closest overall round in Battle Bracket history to reach the quarterfinals in our search for the greatest on-screen fictional movie character of all time.

The Clash of Characters round of 16 included two matchups where the winners received less than 51 percent of the vote. Two other winners received less than 60 percent. Even established fan favorites -- characters who've been mopping the floor with their opposition so far -- posted lower-than-average totals. 

And now, everybody's back to zero: Head here to vote in the quarterfinal round and help choose the regional champions, and check out some details on the showdowns below:

Action Hero Final: John Rambo vs. Benjamin Martin ("The Patriot"). Stallone's killing machine has done the expected amount of damage on an easy path to the quarterfinals, but Mel Gibson's freedom fighter has been a breakout star, downing both Captain America and Jack Reacher in early round action.

Big Stars and Blockbusters Final:  Col. Nathan Jessep vs. Capt. John Miller. Jack Nicholson's Marine officer came from behind to sink Capt. Marko Ramius ("The Hunt for Red October") to reach the round of eight, while the "Saving Private Ryan" officer knocked out "Maverick" Mitchell to advance. The "Top Gun" aviator was the third and final Tom Cruise character left standing.

Combat Classics Final: Gunnery Sgt. Hartman vs. Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore. Robert Duvall's Kilgore edged Lee Marvin's boss from "The Dirty Dozen" by a razor-thin margin in the last round, earning 50.22 percent of the vote. R. Lee Ermey's performance in "Full Metal Jacket" has yet to be seriously challenged, posting easy wins over characters portrayed by an all-time Hollywood all-star team -- Clint Eastwood, John Wayne and Humphrey Bogart.

Best of the Rest Final:  Capt. B.F. "Hawkeye" Pierce vs. Lord Darth Vader. A late run by Leroy Jethro Gibbs ("NCIS") almost made this an all-TV affair, but the Sith lord managed to hold on. Just how popular are these two? Alan Alda's Hawkeye starred in the highest-rated TV series episode in American history, while the Star Wars' saga's total box-office haul now sits at more than $3.7 billion.

Kevin Lilley is the features editor of Military Times.

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