Death is, unfortunately, a crucial part of life. While many venture into the medium of comics to escape such harsh realities, sometimes the worlds on the page have to mirror our own. As such, even members of Marvel’s superhero community have faced this final destination.
Some heroes go out in a blaze of glory, others manage to retire and pass on peacefully, and many are tragically taken far too soon. Being a superhero is a dangerous game, and plenty good souls don’t get the chance to live out their full potential.
10/10 Alejandra Jones Was Slain By Carnage During A Mad Rampage
The Ghost Rider mantle has been passed on to many over the decades, and in 2011, a Nicaraguan woman named Alejandra Jones became the latest host to the powerful entity. Not only that, but during the crossover event Circle of Four, she also (accidentally) bonded with the Venom symbiote. Unfortunately, this would lead to her eventual death.
After the Red Hulk bonded with both the symbiote and the Spirit of Vengeance, Alejandra would be imbued with traces of the alien parasite. These traces, called a codex, would be hunted down by Cletus Kasady, AKA Carnage, and he got what he wanted by brutally murdering the hero as she fought to protect a village.
9/10 The Original Toxin Barely Got His Career Started
Patrick Mulligan was a good, honest New York cop with a wife and son to come home to. Everything changed when he encountered Carnage in the middle of he deadly alien symbiote giving birth. The offspring needed a host, and that ended up being Patrick.
Unlike his “father” or even “grandfather” before him, Patrick was able to use his alien partner for good as the crime fighter Toxin. Things weren’t easy for the new hero as he struggled to control the violent, immature alien, but any chance he had to come out on top was taken from him by Blackheart. The Toxin identity has since gone to others, and Patrick’s time in the spotlight has been largely forgotten.
8/10 Ben Reilly’s Many Deaths And Resurrections Have Broken Him
Ben Reilly, a clone of Peter Parker (the Amazing Spider-Man) was every bit the hero his “brother” is. Ben proved his worth and then some as the Scarlet Spider before graduating to the mantle of Spider-Man during Peter’s brief retirement. Perhaps nothing showcased that more than when he gave his life to save Peter from the Green Goblin.
Death, however, is not always the end in the Marvel universe. Ben was resurrected by the Jackal, and then killed, and resurrected again and again until his mental state was utterly devastated. He has since flip-flopped between the path of a hero and villain, and most recently has become the deadly threat Chasm. Perhaps one day Ben will reclaim his former greatness, but until then, his many deaths have resulted in the end of a great hero.
7/10 Goliath’s Death Changed The Course Of Civil War
The mantle of Goliath has been taken by many heroes in the Marvel universe, but it’s Bill Foster who has had perhaps the greatest impact. Unfortunately, however, that impact would be had via his sudden death.
During the heated events of Civil War, two sides of heroes came into conflict over their opposing views on the Superhero Registration Act. Foster stood alongside Captain America and his anti-registration allies, but was unexpectedly murdered by a cyborg clone of Thor. This tragedy changed the course of the conflict and caused several of those involved to rethink their stance on the act.
6/10 A C-List Villain Had His Chance At Redemption Robbed From Him
Wilbur Day was never in the Marvel villains hall of fame, but regardless, his antics as Stilt-Man earned him something of a reputation. Primarily an antagonist to the hero Daredevil, Stilt-Man was given a chance to redeem himself thanks to the Superhero Registration Act.
Finding himself operating as a government-endorsed hero, Day was tasked with tracking down a sick criminal and bringing him to justice. Alas, this criminal was also being hunted by the Punisher. Upon encountering Day and his original target, the Punisher wasted no time in executing both of them.
5/10 A Symbiotic Hero Couldn’t Outrun His Predecessor
Where the alien symbiotes go, death often follows. This was once again proven true with Scott Washington, a former Guardsman at the supervillain prison The Vault. Scott found himself bonded to an amalgamation of four symbiotes known as Riot, Phage, Lasher, and Agony, thus becoming the anti-hero Hybrid.
Scott and the symbiotes bucked the trend set by Venom and Carnage, but their antics were not long for this world. While separated from his “other,” Eddie Brock hunted down and murdered various symbiotic hosts in an attempt to wipe out the aliens once and for all. This killing spree would sadly include Scott.
4/10 The Sentry Was An Unexpected Victim Of Knull
Once again, the threat of the symbiotes would claim yet another life on Marvel’s Earth. This time, Robert Reynolds, also known as the incredibly powerful hero Sentry, would fight his last fight against the very creator of the deadly alien parasites, Knull.
During the King In Black storyline, Knull and his deadly army invaded Earth and forced a counter-attack from heroes everywhere. Sentry would attempt to fly the villain into space and end his assault there, but Knull managed to turn the tables and murder Sentry instead.
3/10 Many ‘Ultimate’ Universe Heroes Were Brutally Killed Off
2009’s Ultimatum is a controversial comic series to say the least. In it, the Ultimate version of the Marvel universe is attacked by Magneto in his quest for revenge. The storyline is remembered for many reasons, not the least of which is down to the sheer amount of heroes killed in various nasty ways.
Between Angel being killed and partially eaten by Sabretooth, Beast drowning, and Cyclops being shot in the head by Quicksilver, the series wasn’t shy about surprising readers. Whether that gamble paid off or not is another topic entirely.
2/10 The Original Captain Marvel Met A Sad Yet Dignified End
Sometimes, even the greatest heroes can fall victim to very relatable, very human problems. The Kree warrior Mar-Vell, AKA the original Captain Marvel, was a celebrated defender of justice and was a prominent figure within Marvel continuity from the 1960s to early 80s.
In the end, however, Mar-Vell discovered that his future would be cut short not by a villain or mythical curse, but by cancer. In his final moments, many of his fellow heroes would be by his bedside. Not only that, but even many of his greatest enemies would champion him as their ultimate rival.
1/10 The Green Goblin Changed Everything For Peter Parker
In the alternate universe known as MC2, a young woman named May Parker takes on the web-slinging, wall-crawling identity of Spider-Girl. May, along with crucial help from her parents Peter and Mary-Jane Parker, is a legend in her own right and a true hero for all. Unfortunately, in the main 616 timeline, May would never have this chance.
While pregnant, Mary-Jane was poisoned in a ploy orchestrated by Norman Osborn, AKA the Green Goblin. This ultimately caused her to go into premature labor and tragically, her unborn daughter didn’t survive. The resulting battle with Peter and Ben Reilly facing off against the Goblin led to Ben’s (first) death, and Peter and Mary-Jane’s future would be forever changed.
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