Leading the online poll is the world's most hunted man, Edward Snowden, currently under Russia's refuge. With close to 70 per cent votes until Tuesday night, the NSA whistle-blower was way ahead of Narendra Modi, currently at the second position with six per cent votes. (Who should be TIME'S Person of the Year?)
However, on Twitter, the battle between the Gujarat Chief Minister and the teenage Twerking star, currently at the third spot with five per cent votes, has become the most closely watched contest.
Mr Modi, the only contender from India, has been described as "the controversial Hindu nationalist most likely to unseat India's ruling Congress party" in the poll.
Meanwhile, for three world leaders - US president Barack Obama, Russia's Vladimir Putin and Syria's Bashar al-Assad - this was one stage they never thought they would share.
In September this year at the G20 meet, the allegation of a Syrian chemical attack had Mr Obama and Mr Putin snarling at each other. Now it has turned even more personal.
And then there is the girl who dared to take on the Taliban - Malala Yousafzai. Not yet 16, but the Pakistani braveheart already has the world applauding her vision and courage.
The Pakistani activist may have missed out on the Nobel peace prize but she may hope to bring this one home.
Also among the chosen 42 is someone who is completely oblivious to the pressure that comes with the job: the new heir to the British throne, Prince George, just 4-months old.
The winner of the Time magazine's poll will be announced next month.