10 Comics That Killed A Lot Of Their Characters

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“No one stays dead in comics” is an adage that comic book fans have been throwing around for decades. Superman, Jean Grey, Wolverine, Spider-Man, The Flash, and even Batman have all died in mainstream comic book continuity only to be resurrected through storylines, alternate universe vindications, or time travel.


Related: 10 Shocking DC Character Resurrections Fans Didn’t See Coming

But the immortality of comic book characters isn’t true for those operating outside the DC and Marvel canon. In fact, many comic book writers love to kill their characters with abandon, as if they were directly overturning the tradition of superhero invincibility. These deaths break hearts, but they live long in the memory of fans.

ten Even the narrator isn’t safe in the wicked + the divine

Created by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie

The wicked + the divine was first published in 2014 and follows a group of deities called The Pantheon who return to Earth every 90 years by merging with the spirit of a mortal.

However, once the Pantheon returns, they die after two years. Also, when the Pantheon appears in 2014, someone starts murdering them one by one. The gods may eventually return, but all of the mortals they inhabit are truly dead, meaning regular cast members – including, at one point, the narrator – will be dismembered on a regular basis.

9 Exiles Introduced New Marvel Heroes Only To Destroy Them

Created by Mike Marts, Mike Raicht, Judd Winick, Mike McKone and Jim Calafiore

The X-Men may have become so good at cheating death that they became immortal in the time of Krakoa. The spin-off series Exiles, however, has no qualms killing its characters en masse. In fact, at least a dozen Exiles have died and never returned, and that’s not even counting the characters left dead in some of the universes they visit.

Related: 10 Best Marvel Comics That Were Cut Short

The Exiles are mostly characters from alternate Marvel continuities, so their deaths have little impact on the main 616 universe. truly loved mutants.

8 Each of the mighty Mutanimals is dead

Created by Ryan Brown and Stephen Murphy

In the early 90s, many comic companies, animation studios and video game developers tried to replicate the success of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles with other hip teams made up of anthropomorphized animals. The powerful mutant animals ran as a nine-issue series published by Archie Comics with the intention of adapting it into an animated series. The series was canceled, but Mutanimals continued as backup in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures.

However, Ryan Brown decided his team of mutant animals would be better off dead than playing second fiddle to the Turtles. All Mutanimals The team was killed by assassins in an incredibly dark ending for an adorable team of talking creatures.

seven Death Was All About Marvel Zombies

Created by Robert Kirkman and Sean Phillips

Marvel Zombies began as a five-issue limited series written by Walking Dead designer Robert Kirkman, with artwork by Sean Phillips. The concept proved so popular that Marvel periodically released a miniseries set in the world of undead superheroes, as well as a crossover with Army of Darkness.

The original Kirkman series, however, ends on a dark note that leaves little room for a sequel. The only survivors left on Earth are Black Panther, Wasp, and a handful of Magneto’s sidekicks. The superhero zombies eat Galactus and become a world-destroying collective that roams the cosmos, devouring planets.

6 Battle Royale is as bloody as it sounds

Created by Kousun Takami & Masayuki Taguch

Given that the book it’s adapted from is the namesake of an entire genre of late-game multiplayer games, it’s no surprise that battle royale, the manga is full of victims. In fact, the manga is even more violent than the very bloody film adaptation.

Related: 10 Ways Battle Royale Is Different In The Manga

like the book, battle royale is about a class of teenagers who are dropped off on an island where they must fight to the death. A little like hunger games, which has a similar setup, main characters, supporting characters, heroes, and villains are all killed indiscriminately. Only two survivors remain.

5 100 bullets killed even more characters than intended

Created by Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Risso

100 balls has a premise that lets the reader know from the start that many people are going to die. A mysterious businessman named Agent Graves approaches victims of wrongdoing and offers to kill the wrongdoer with no strings attached.

But 100 balls ended up with an even higher body count than that premise suggested. Over the course of the series, a wide array of characters tied to an overarching story were introduced, but every one of these characters died on the last page except for three survivors. What started as a spin-off Tales from the Crypt ended as a sprawling Greek tragedy.

4 The Walking Dead Has Introduced And Killed Many Characters

Created by Robert Kirkman and Tony Moore

Readers embarking on a zombie comic already expect that most of the characters won’t make it out alive. Robert Kirkman shocked his fans again with the death of several of his characters in The Walking Dead. His trick was to keep characters around just long enough for the audience to expect them to survive, then suddenly and horribly kill them.

The first volume of The Walking Dead makes for overwhelming reading because Kirkman features so many characters. Considering the number of characters who suffered grisly fates, the huge list proved necessary.

3 Hitman Was A DC Comic Where Dead Characters Stayed Dead

Created by Garth Ennis and John McRea

The Hitman The series had a respectable run from 1996 to 2001, and it remains a cult classic to this day. The series was set in the main DC continuity, but it always felt like it existed in its own little pocket where Batman and Superman’s concerns were remote.

Ennis did not play the resurrection card with Hitman. Deceased characters would remain dead and in the end many crucial characters had been eliminated. Ennis made sure the titular hitman, Tommy Monaghan, wouldn’t make any more appearances in DC titles when he killed him and his best friend Natt in the latest issue.

2 X-Statix ​​has killed several versions of its teams

Created by Mike Allred and Peter Milligan

The cast of the X-Statixan X-Men spin-off comic, has mostly been resurrected in the pages of the 2022 series The X-Cellent. The original series from 2001 to 2004, killed off not one but two complete slates of fame-seeking superheroes dubbed reality TV stars.

Related: The 10 Most Obscure Marvel Superheroes With The Weirdest Powers

The first issue with the new team, originally a new incarnation of X Force, put together an entire cast of wacky ad-obsessed mutants, only to have all but two die on the last page. The series would continue to have a regularly rotating cast of characters, killing them without remorse and ending the series with the entire team dying again.

1 Saga breaks the hearts of its fans

Created by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples

In Saga #39, young protagonist Hazel and her meerkat-like friend Kurti share an adorable kiss. Three issues later, the comet Kurti and her family live on is swallowed up by supernatural horror as Kurti begs for her life before dying in a swirling ocean of black. This is just one of many major character deaths in the “War for Phang” arc, and it shows how little writer Brian K. Vaughan cares about sparing the feelings of his readers.

SagaThe deaths of are so much more shocking than the deaths of most comic books, because artist Fiona Staples’ beautiful art and Vaughan’s silly, imaginative world make the whole series feel like a book of children’s stories whenever something violent or sexually explicit doesn’t happen. Vaughan kills beloved characters as much as George RR Martin or Joss Whedon, and no one is safe.

Next: 10 Top TV Killers

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