Death is pretty common in Marvel Comics these days. In fact, it is the cornerstone of everything Dawn of x It was from the X-Men comics at this point. But throughout Marvel Comics history, the death of a beloved superhero, villain, or supporting character has produced shockwaves through the fanbase, reverberating for decades afterward.
While some of the most surprising deaths in Marvel Comics are among the most iconic moments in comic book history, others are more subtle in their significance. While no less shocking, some deaths have consequences far beyond the obvious and in some cases are still reproduced in comics today.
10 Moira MacTaggert
The death of Moria MacTaggert, one of them, anyway, has led to one of the biggest retcons in Marvel Comics history. Moira, the X-Men’s longtime human ally, has been revealed to be a mutant. His power is to resurrect with his memories intact in another life.
Moira has seen numerous lives and potential futures, many of which herald doom not just for mutants but for all of humanity. His death, and resurrection, is by far the most shocking and momentous Marvel death in recent years.
To longtime comic book readers, you probably feel like every member of the Avengers roster has died at some point. Still, one of the most shocking deaths was Mockingbird, the longtime member of the Avengers, West Coast Avengers, and a top Marvel spy.
Mockingbird sacrificed his life at issue 100 Avengers West Coast in 1993. The team was fighting the demonic supervillain Mephisto on their own turf and she gave her life to protect that of her teammate and ex-husband, Hawkeye.
8 Professor X
Professor X has been killed in the comics before, especially during the Era of apocalypse event of the 90s, when his death in the past created a dystopian future. But his most shocking death comes at the hands of his best student, Cyclops.
During the Avengers vs. X Men crossover event, Cyclops became the host of the Phoenix Force along with four other mutants in an attempt to save the life of Hope Summers, the first new mutant born since the cataclysm of House of M. When Cyclops became the Phoenix’s sole host, his anger and power took the life of his mentor.
7 Bucky barnes
Bucky Barnes is alive and well in the comics and in the MCU as Winter Soldier, but he wasn’t always like this. In fact, Bucky had been dead for much of Marvel Comics history until the early 2000s. His death came as a real shock when it was revealed in the 1960s. Bucky had been Captain America’s partner during WWII. World Cup and beyond, but a retcon changed that.
On the Avengers # 4 from 1964, Captain America is thawed from the ice and brought to the present. He reveals that Bucky died during World War II, invalidating years of comic adventures with the two of Timely Comics. This would remain the status quo for decades.
6 Captain America
Captain America was also not immune from dying in the comics. His most shocking, and most violent, death occurs at the end of the comic. Civil war event, in 2007. After Captain America retires in his battle with Iron Man for superhero registration, he is assassinated in public.
It was later revealed that a brainwashed Sharon Carter was behind the attack. Steve Rogers finally returns, and fans discover that he was not dead, but trapped in a unique knot in time and space thanks to his enemy, the Red Skull.
5 Kraven the hunter
It’s not just superheroes who cause the most shocking deaths in comics. One of the most impressive in Marvel history belongs to Kraven The Hunter. The longtime Spider-Man villain and potential MCU member Sinister Six took his own life at the end of Kraven’s Last Hunt.
This seminal story ran through numerous Spider-Man comics in 1987, including Spider-Man web # 31–32, The amazing Spider Man # 293–294, and The Spectacular Spider-Man # 131-132.
Elektra is one of Marvel’s greatest martial artists, an assassin trained by The Hand. That is why his death at the hands of Bullseye in Reckless # 181 in 1982 was completely unexpected. He had become a popular character in the book after his debut in issue # 168.
His death also carried weight as it was one of the few that lasted, at least for a time. But Elektra would resurrect many years later, in 1996, and since then it has remained part of the Marvel Comics landscape.
One of the most shocking deaths in Marvel Comics occurred in 1982, with the death of the original version of Captain Marvel, Mar-Vell. The Kree warrior succumbed to cancer in The death of Captain Marvel, Marvel’s first graphic novel. At this time, deaths in the comics were still very rare and certainly involved major superheroes.
Mar-Vell develops cancer from exposure to a nerve agent called Compound 13. Unlike most deaths in modern comics, hers has stalled. Outside of alternate universe stories, he remains dead in the current Marvel continuity.
two Gwen stacy
Before Mar-Vell, Gwen Stacy’s death in The amazing Spider Man # 121 in 1973 was probably the most significant in Marvel Comics. Spider-Man’s longtime girlfriend and an important part of his Silver Age adventures, her death came at the hands of the Green Goblin.
He kidnapped her and then threw her from the top of the Brooklyn Bridge. Spider-Man caught her with a net, but the shock of stopping so quickly broke her neck. Gwen’s tragic death would haunt Spider-Man for decades.
1 Gray jean
Marvel’s most shocking death occurs at the end of one of its most iconic stories. The saga of the dark phoenix he saw Jean Gray consumed by the powerful cosmic energy of the Phoenix Force. Completely sublimating Jean, the Dark Phoenix consumes the energy of an entire star, causing it to go supernova.
The resulting explosion destroys an entire solar system. To stop and save the lives of billions of people, Jean gives his life to a powerful alien weapon. Being the Phoenix, it wouldn’t be the first time he would die in the comics.
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