In the comics we never really look at superheroes as being able to die unless the bad guy is that powerful and in some ways just as unstoppable as the heroes and their indomitable willpower. But there have been some superhero deaths that have taken us by surprise since they came at a time when we firmly believed that such heroes would always be around in one form or another. But the superheroes of this day and of yesterday are every bit as vulnerable as any that have ever existed and it’s been proven by the fact that several of them have suffered unexpected deaths that we didn’t really see coming until they were gone. The only thing about superhero deaths is that many of them do tend to come back in one way or another since there are so many fans that would riot if they weren’t. Plus, the idea of having so many different story lines that can be followed is one reason why we might not ever see the real end of them.
But their deaths still impacted us greatly when they did come, and here are a few that just floored fans at the time they happened.
5. The Flash
When it comes to speed no one has ever managed to hold a candle to the Flash. But while Barry Allen was indeed a genius and was the fastest man alive this didn’t help him when he had to go up against Anti-Monitor and prevent him from firing off his Anti-Matter cannon at earth in the hopes of destroying it. Barry took it upon himself to create a speed vortex that ended up destroying the cannon but also took his life as the power that he had to use ended being too much for his body to take. It is said that his spirit resides in the Speed Force, where all speedsters in the DC universe go eventually.
4. Captain America
For someone like Cap that’s been through so much and done his best to serve his country a sniper seems a rather cowardly way to take him out. But following the end of the Civil War saga when he’s been led away in cuffs, Crossbones takes the shot and ends the life of one of America’s most venerated superheroes in a fashion that could only be called gutless. Of course there was a whole plot laid out by the Red Skull that followed so many convoluted and twisting pathways of reasoning that the assassination couldn’t be anything too simple since that wouldn’t be the way things are done.
3. Captain Marvel
It’s amazing to think that any hero would be subject to anything that a regular human would, but then you get the idea that beneath the masks and the muscles that they’re all just ordinary beings as well, no matter that they have powers that are far beyond the average person. To think that any of them could succumb to something like lung cancer is simply too much to be believed, but this is what Mar-Vell, the original Captain Marvel, finally died of. It’s not exactly a fitting ending to a superhero of any caliber really, but it still makes you think that for all their power and all their strengths they have about the same weaknesses as anyone.
With a healing factor that essentially stops him from aging as quickly and a skeleton that’s unbreakable one would think that Wolverine might outlast many of the superheroes in the Marvel universe. But despite his longevity and very wide skill set, Wolverine, aka Logan, just wanted to rest for the most part, and when his healing factor eventually gets burned out he finds a way to do just that, but thankfully does so in a manner that is most fitting for the man that’s the best he is at what he does. He goes out after taking Dr. Cornelius, the man that experimented on him, to his grave and also destroying the test subjects that Cornelius had been working on.
For a long time it was believed that nothing could take down Superman since he was the man of steel that could do just about anything and was strong enough to take on anyone that came his way. But Doomsday wasn’t just anyone and he wasn’t about to bow down to the man of steel in any way. Despite the snafu with Batman vs. Superman and the manner in which Doomsday was shown, the reality of the creature that did what only kryptonite could have done up until that point is that he was tough enough and aggressive enough to do what hundreds of enemies hadn’t been able to do. He proved that the man of steel was in fact just a man.
For a lot of superheroes death is a revolving door thanks to the writers and the fans, but at least a few of them don’t ever come back.