9 Comic Book Characters You Didn’t Realize Are Dead in 2024

Deadshot Got Shot Dead

In 2024, attempting to navigate the complex and ever-evolving continuity of comic book characters can be an arduous task, especially considering there is now the dual narrative tracks of on-page storylines and the vast multitude of cinematic interpretations to consider. Casual fans can easily fall behind on critical storyline twists, including the demise of certain characters that might have slipped under their radar.

While it’s true that the concept of death in comic books can be rather malleable, there remains a number of heroes and villains whose absence has endured for an extended period (dare we say permanent?)

9. Hellboy Perished, Went To Hell, And Wrecked The Place

Hellboy Perished, Went To Hell, And Wrecked The Place

Date of Demise: Hellboy: The Fury #3 (2011)/Hellboy in Hell #10 (2016)

With a hellish origin point and a job that brings him into close contact with all manners of spirits and demons, Hellboy has always had a unique perspective on life. Even when he perished and crumbled to ash confronting Nimue, the Queen of Blood – defeating her and saving the Earth, but having his heart ripped out in the process – Hellboy’s story wasn’t quite finished yet.

Appropriately enough, Hellboy ended up in hell after a bit of spiritual wandering, where he got right back to his usual business of fighting monsters and slaying devils. This all culminated in Hellboy confronting Beelzebub himself, destroying his hellish kingdom, and then settling down in a quiet corner of the afterlife to peacefully fade out of existence. Death may not have been the end for Hellboy, but his story did eventually come to a definitive end all the same. 

8. Karen Page Has Been Deceased Since 1999

Karen Page Has Been Deceased Since 1999

Date of Demise: Daredevil Vol. 2 #5 (1999)

Matt Murdock has had a lot of love interests in his day, but none have had the lasting impact of Karen Page. When the two of them parted ways, Page left to Hollywood to try to make it as an actress, but her attempts were wrought with misfortune. She ended up addicted to heroin and was taken advantage of by several producers before hitting her lowest point and selling her greatest secret for another hit – Daredevil’s secret identity.

Against all odds, Murdock forgave Page and helped her get her life back on track, but her past continued to haunt her. An illusory scheme by Mysterio had Karen convinced she had contracted AIDS, causing her to reach out to Murdock once again for help. Unfortunately, Mysterio had also sicced Bullseye on Daredevil, and Page arrived to find the two embroiled in a heated brawl. Without hesitating, Page leaped in front of a billy club aimed at Daredevil’s heart, sacrificing herself to save the man she still loved. Daredevil defeated Bullseye and got his revenge on Mysterio, but decades later, he still hasn’t quite gotten over the traumatic loss of his greatest love.

7. Valkyrie Got Her Head Cut Off In Times Square By Malekith

Valkyrie Got Her Head Cut Off In Times Square By Malekith

Date of Demise: War of the Realms #2 (2019)

Countless individuals have served in the ranks of the Valkyrior across the various iterations of the Marvel Universe, but none have been more prominent than Brunnhilde, the heroine who went by “Valkyrie” for decades and joined the rosters of the Defenders, Avengers, and Asgardians of the Galaxy. Despite her godly origins, Valkyrie has stood in defense of Midgard on numerous occasions, and that’s exactly what she was doing as she and dozens of other Valkyrior faced off against Malekith and his incursion of the Nine Realms in Times Square.

Unfortunately, a Doctor Strange spell gone awry resulted in all the heroes except for the Valkyrior being transported away from the battlefield. Nevertheless, each Valkyrie kept on fighting until the bitter end, with Brunnhilde being the last to fall, personally executed by Malekith in severe fashion for the world to see. 

Others, namely Jane Foster, have since taken up the mantle of the Valkyrie, but Brunnhilde remains in the Asgardian afterlife.

6. The Original Loki Has Been Deceased Since The Void Tore Him Apart

The Original Loki Has Been Deceased Since The Void Tore Him Apart

Date of Demise: Siege #4 (2010)

Deaths and resurrections are often a messy business in comic books, but never more so than when they involve the Asgardians and other pseudo-deities of the Marvel Universe. The original Loki, God of Mischief, lived for millennia before teaming up with Norman Osborn to take on Asgard itself, bringing his childhood home to the brink of destruction. Full of remorse, Loki turned on Osborn and attempted to use the Norn Stones to rectify the situation, only to be torn apart at the molecular level by the Void, Osborn’s omni-powerful attack dog.

Normally, when an Asgardian perishes, they are reborn in due time. However, Loki had made efforts to break the chains of destiny before his demise, and so he was resurrected as an entirely new, totally innocent being referred to as “Kid Loki” – a far more benevolent take on the God of Mischief who eventually proved himself a hero and won the admiration and love of his brother Thor.

Tragically, this was all part of the old Loki’s devious posthumous plan. He had already magically arranged for an echo of his original self to take over the body and mind of Kid Loki, erasing him from existence and taking his newly earned reputation all for himself. However, the influence of Kid Loki’s good nature stuck around, and the current, amalgamated version of the character is thus far more heroic than the original – even if it’s always in his own, mischievous way, and even though he had to eliminate Kid Loki to get there. The end result: an all-new, all-different Loki, untethered from the past, but still burdened by it.

5. Hank Pym Is Being Used As A Meat Puppet By Ultron

Hank Pym Is Being Used As A Meat Puppet By Ultron

Date of Demise: Avengers: Rage of Ultron #1 (2015)

In the pages of Marvel Comics, it was Hank Pym, not Tony Stark, who created the robotic menace Ultron, and it’s a mistake that has haunted him ever since. When a version of Ultron took over Titan, the homeworld of Thanos and the Eternals, the Avengers headed out to defeat him once again, with Pym breaking out his old Giant-Man duds for the occasion.

Discovering that Ultron was once again hellbent on destroying humanity, Pym and the Avengers waged an all-out assault against him. At a pivotal moment, Pym tackled Ultron as Vision simultaneously phased through them, resulting in their bodies becoming merged into a new being known as “Ultron Pym.”

At first, the Avengers believed that this new entity was an amalgamation of both Ultron and Pym, and that Ultron was merely in the driver’s seat. In time, however, Tony Stark would discover that the human half of Ultron Pym was only a simulation, and that the merging process had caused Pym’s demise – meaning he was now little more than a meat puppet being paraded around by his greatest regret. 

4. Galactus Ran Afoul Of Thor

Galactus Ran Afoul Of Thor

Date of Demise: Thor Vol. 6 #6 (2020)

Galactus was older than the Marvel Universe itself, but that didn’t necessarily make him immortal. First, the Devourer of Worlds was nearly wiped out by an interdimensional threat known as the Black Winter, causing him to turn to Thor for help. To aid in their quest, Galactus named Thor a herald and imbued him with the Power Cosmic – which proved to be a mistake in due time.

When Galactus refused to stop eating planets, Thor angrily confronted him, using the very same power that Galactus had given him to overwhelm the ancient being and drain him of the energy he’d taken from several sentient worlds. Then, Thor turned Galactus’s body into a cosmic detonation device, used it to disintegrate the Black Winter, and then took Galactus’s helmet as a keepsake – making it the new entranceway to his throne room in Asgard. 

3. Deadshot Got Shot Dead

Deadshot Got Shot Dead

Date of Demise: Suicide Squad Vol. 6 #9 (2020)

A long-time member of the Suicide Squad, Floyd Lawton learned that he had already completed enough missions to have his sentence fully commuted, but Ted Kord – former Blue Beetle and now head of Task Force X – was trying to keep him enlisted. Alongside his teammates, Deadshot confronted Kord, only to find that Superman had already arrived on the scene and tied Kord up, seemingly bringing the conflict to an end.

While the rest of the Suicide Squad departed, Lawton was suspicious that someone as powerful as Superman would need to tie up an opponent, so he stayed behind to ask some questions. As soon as they were alone, “Superman” revealed himself as Black Mask in disguise and shot Deadshot dead, kicking him out of a high-rise window for good measure. Tragically – even if a little cliche – Deadshot perished just moments before he was set to retire. His teammates tracked down Black Mask and brought him to justice, but that was small consolation. 

2. The Original Black Widow Was Slain By The Hydra Captain America (And Now She’s A Clone)

The Original Black Widow Was Slain By The Hydra Captain America (And Now She’s A Clone)

Date of Demise: Secret Empire #7 (2017)

When a sentient Cosmic Cube rewrote history so that Steve Rogers had always been a member of Hydra, and then that corrupted Captain America took over the United States, Natasha Romanoff led the resistance against him. Training up a group of young heroes known as the Champions, the Black Widow ran a guerilla campaign aimed at disrupting the Hydra regime – a mission that became significantly more complicated when one of her trainees, Miles Morales, was prophesied to slay the evil Cap.

When the foretold day arrived, Morales attempted to confront Rogers, but quickly got in over his head. Black Widow intervened just in time to block a lethal strike from Cap’s shield, which connected with her neck instead of Miles and resulted in her instantaneous demise. Her selfless act was, at the very least, enough to convince Morales not to take Hydra Cap’s life in anger.

Another Romanoff popped up right away, leading some to believe she had faked her demise, but the truth was much stranger. Instead, this new Black Widow was one of a series of clones created by the Red Room and implanted with Natasha’s memories – leading to some serious questions about whether the Black Widow fans had come to know and love had been the genuine article in the first place.

1. Alfred Pennyworth Was Done In By Bane

Alfred Pennyworth Had His Neck Snapped By Bane

Date of Demise: Batman Vol. 3 #77 (2019)

Following a series of harrowing events, Bruce Wayne discovered that a secret campaign was being waged against him by Bane and a version of his father Thomas from an alternate reality – but not quickly enough to prevent Bane from taking over the whole of Gotham City. As part of the ploy, Bane nabbed Alfred Pennyworth and held him hostage in Wayne Manor, threatening to slay him if any member of the Bat-Family was seen in Gotham thereafter.

Not wanting the Dark Knight’s actions to be hampered by him, Alfred managed to send a message to Bruce informing him that he’d escaped capture and gone to ground, though that wasn’t true. Instead, Alfred was making the sacrifice play, and that came to fruition when Damian Wayne was caught in Gotham by his grandfather and then forced to watch as Bane snapped Alfred’s neck in horrific fashion. It didn’t take long from there for Batman and his allies to retake the city and defeat both Bane and Thomas; getting over Alfred’s demise has been considerably more difficult.