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Top 10 Times Superheroes Killed the Villain

VO: JG WRITTEN BY: Ryan Woods
Written by Ryan Woods Even superheroes have a breaking point. Welcome to Watchmojo.com and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Times Superheroes Killed the Villain. For this list, we’ll be looking at the most notable examples of superheroes dealing out lethal justice to their villainous foes. Since we are not focusing on a particular medium, kills from comics, films and video games are all welcome. Have an idea you want to see made into a WatchMojo video? Check out our suggest page at http://WatchMojo.comsuggest and submit your idea.
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Even superheroes have a breaking point. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Times Superheroes Killed the Villain.

For this list, we’ll be looking at the most notable examples of superheroes dealing out lethal justice to their villainous foes. Since we are not focusing on a particular medium, kills from comics, films and video games are all welcome.

#10: The Punisher kills Howard Saint
“The Punisher” (2004)

In a scene which evokes Achilles’ desecration of Hector’s body in “The Iliad”, the ending of “The Punisher” was no less poetic. After systematically killing off Howard Saint’s loved ones as retribution for his own family’s massacre, Frank Castle gives his hated adversary a sporting chance in a Western-style standoff. Once he beats Saint to the draw and mortally wounds him, the Punisher ties the mob boss to a car and sends him to a fiery grave. Combining brutality with sheer humiliation, the Punisher’s revenge on his mortal enemy is a dramatic kill befitting a Shakespearean tragedy.

#9: Wolverine kills Deadpool
“X-Men Origins: Wolverine” (2009)

Say what you will about this Wolverine film, but how often do you get a superhero movie that ends with the hero cutting the villain’s head off? While the first big screen version of Deadpool was a vast departure from the comics, it did provide Wolverine with a formidable foe to battle in the film’s climax. With some help from Sabretooth, Wolverine engages Deadpool in a duel to the death atop a nuclear reactor. Despite all of his additional powers though, the mute Deadpool is ultimately overwhelmed by the feral mutant brothers and ends up decapitated.

#8: Darkman kills Strack
“Darkman” (1990)

Who could have imagined that a slimy corporate crook would be so good at boxing? Battling atop a skyscraper construction site, Darkman and murderous billionaire Louis Strack fight it out over Darkman’s captive girlfriend Julie. Strack initially has the upper hand when it comes to fisticuffs, but once he refers to Darkman as a freak he triggers the hideous hero’s volatile temper and receives a rage-fuelled beatdown. Strack then attempts to finish the fight with a nailgun but before long is kicked off the scaffold and left dangling over the edge by Darkman. Instead of admitting defeat, however, Strack makes the critical error of underestimating his opponent’s ruthlessness and plunges to his death.

#7: Tim Drake kills the Joker
“Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker” (2000)

This was as dark as animated Batman stories dared to get. Taking place within the first Batman Beyond film, this scene is actually a flashback to the earlier days of when Bruce Wayne was still Batman and was working alongside Batgirl and Robin. After being kidnapped, tortured and brainwashed by the Joker, Tim Drake reveals Batman’s true identity to the Clown Prince of Crime inside Arkham Asylum. After Joker gets the upper hand on Batman by stabbing him in the leg, he hands a gun to Tim and tells the former Robin to murder his mentor. Luckily for the Dark Knight, Tim is able to break his conditioning and shoots the Joker instead in a truly disturbing scene.

#6: Blade kills Deacon Frost
“Blade” (1998)

Although one could refer to Blade as a superhero, a more accurate description of him would be a vampire exterminator. Needless to say then that he is quite at ease when it comes to killing his enemies. In the first installment of the Blade trilogy, the titular daywalker crosses swords with Deacon Frost, the vampire who infected Blade’s mother while she was pregnant with him. While Blade manages to deal out several devastating strikes, Frost’s god-like powers allow him to regenerate instantly. Blade then takes a different approach and injects Frost with an overdose of his vaccine which causes Frost to erupt in an explosion of gore.

#5: Superman kills the Joker
“Injustice: Gods Among Us” (2013)

While the Joker may have been safe in the assumption that Batman would never kill him, he definitely made an error in assuming the same about Superman. Drugging Superman into thinking a pregnant Lois Lane was Doomsday, the Joker intentionally caused the Man of Steel to murder his beloved wife and unborn child. Grief-stricken and consumed by an unforgiving bloodlust, not even Batman can reason with Superman before he kills the Joker in a fit of rage by tearing out his heart. Although shocking at the time, in a way Superman’s actions were poetic justice given that the Joker figuratively did the same to him by murdering his family.

#4: Superman kills Doomsday
“Superman” #75 (1993)

While a lot of comic book fans may not be comfortable with Superman killing his enemies, there’s little debate when it comes to Doomsday. An adversary so destructive that he defeated the Justice League before going toe-to-toe with the Man of Steel, Doomsday is a virtually unstoppable killing machine who cannot be contained or reformed. Realizing this, Superman fights Doomsday with all of his resolve and the ensuing slugfest decimates much of Metropolis, culminating with the two titans delivering simultaneous deathblows to each other. Although Doomsday often gets the credit for killing Superman, it's also important to note that Superman returned the favor.

#3: Deadpool kills Ajax
“Deadpool” (2016)

Francis definitely had this one coming. After putting Wade Wilson through hell to transform him into a mutant, Ajax makes the second mistake of kidnapping his beloved Vanessa. While Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead deal with Angel Dust, Deadpool and Ajax have their own personal battle which concludes after the cargo ship they are fighting on overturns. The Merc with a Mouth then beats Ajax to a bloody pulp and before learning that Ajax can’t in fact cure him of his deformity. With no further reason to let him live, Deadpool prepares to blow Francis’ brains out before Colossus gives an impassioned speech for mercy. Needless to say, he ends up wasting his breath and his breakfast.

#2: Batman kills the Joker
“Batman: The Dark Knight Returns” (1986)

In this grim masterpiece written by Frank Miller, an allegedly reformed Joker murders an entire talk show audience before being chased to Gotham’s county fair by a vengeful Batman. With all of the Joker’s victims weighing heavily on his mind, Batman resorts to vicious tactics like throwing batarangs into the Joker’s eye and firing at him with a revolver in an attempt to halt his killing spree once and for all. Finally cornering him in the Tunnel of Love, Batman snaps the Joker’s neck just enough to paralyze him. Satisfied that he forced his old enemy to lose control, the Joker finishes himself off by wrenching his broken neck as his final punchline.

#1: Superman kills General Zod
“Man of Steel” (2013)

Although the final fight between Superman and General Zod in the first installment of the DCEU generated a ton of controversy, their fight’s conclusion demonstrated that Superman takes no joy in killing. With General Zod intent on using his heat vision to slaughter some innocent civilians, Superman is forced to make a judgment call and emphatically snaps the genocidal villain’s neck. Although killing Zod saved the lives of his intended victims, Superman lets out a cry of anguish and remorse over having to resort to such brutal methods to save lives.
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