A Brief History of Avengers Dying in the Comics (The Dan Cave w/ Dan Casey)
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A Brief History of Avengers Dying in the Comics (The Dan Cave w/ Dan Casey)

August 21, 2019

(upbeat rock music) Who’s gonna die in Avengers Infinity War? Probably everyone, right? Or nobody, or at least Captain America. The Avengers have a proud tradition of dying horrifically and usually being resurrected a few issues later. While we have our own theories as who’s likeliest to die in Infinity War, today we’re gonna look back at a brief history of every time the Avengers have died in the comics. Now first of all, a quick point of order. To preserve my sanity, this video’s gonna cover the core Avengers from the 2012 film because they are the ones who are likeliest to bite it in Infinity War, given their rapidly expiring contracts. So that is Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, Hawkeye, and the Hulk. Sorry for you people who loved the Vision dying, you weirdos. Second, let’s get two major comic events out of the way right off the bat. Number one, 1991’s Infinity Gauntlet series, in which Thanos basically kills every single Avenger in increasingly horrific ways. And number two, 1996’s Onslaught saga, in which nearly every Avenger on this list, except for Black Widow, dies during the fight against Onslaught, who’s a malevolent psionic baby formed from consciousnesses of Professor X and Magneto. I know, it’s as dumb as it sounds. In both cases, everyone was brought back to life and the status quos were effectively restored because comics. And spoiler alert, in case the title of this video wasn’t abundantly clear, I’m gonna spoil a ton of comics, so if you don’t like that, watch it later. Iron Man. Now Tony Stark might be called the Invincible Iron Man, but he has actually shuffled off this mortal coil once or twice before. In 1995’s Avengers: The Crossing storyline, Tony Stark was revealed to have been working for Kang the Conqueror the whole time! (gasps) Gasp you should. And he began murdering people left and right. The Avengers had to travel through time to enlist a 19-year-old Tony Stark to help defeat his older self. Ultimately, old Tony sacrificed his life to defeat Kang so that his younger self and his friends could live. Teen Tony, AKA Iron Boy, AKA Why-ron Man, didn’t fare much better. While battling one of the worser things to come out of the 90s, the aforementioned Onslaught, teen Tony sacrificed himself by spearing Dr. Doom and flying the two of them through a portal, presumably dying alongside countless other heroes. Or at least that’s what we thought. As it turns out, Franklin Richards, boy genius, created a pocket dimension called Counter Earth where the heroes secretly survived, and in doing so, Franklin resurrected adult Tony from The Crossing, And he merged with Teen Tony when they both returned to the main Earth 616 continuity. Now that’s not Tony’s first time or last time pulling a fast one on the audience, either. In a 1992 storyline, Tony suffered nerve damage during a battle with the Masters of Silence, this group of high tech samurai assassins, and seemingly died on the operating table after defeating them, or so his BFF James Rhodes believed. In reality, Tony put himself into suspended animation until he could get better. And the worst part? He didn’t even tell War Machine who was so pissed at Tony that he ended their friendship and left to join the West Coast Avengers, which is actually the worst coast Avengers, including Great Lakes. Also at the end of Civil War II, it turned out that despite suffering wounds that should have killed him, Tony had experimented on his body enough over the years to make him more machine than man, and that allowed him to survive his grievous wounds. While he was effectively dead, he lived on as an alcoholic AI in Riri William’s, AKA Iron Heart’s, armor. And yes, you heard me right, an alcoholic AI. He programmed it that way because even in the afterlife, Tony is a huge dick. Captain America. Now few people in the Marvel Universe have died more than Captain America has. First of all, Cap seemingly died at the end of World War II, but it turned out he was just chillin’. No, literally, at the bottom of the ocean ’cause he was preserved in ice thanks to the Super Soldier Serum in his veins. In 1969’s Captain America number 111, Steve seemingly died after being shot by Hydra agents, but it turned out he faked his death to trick people into thinking that Steve Rogers wasn’t Captain America after all. You never seen them in the same room together, have you? Cap next bit the dust in 1985’s Secret Wars storyline during a battle with Dr. Doom in which the not-so-good doctor uses the Beyonder’s cosmic powers to disintegrate poor Stevey boy. But the Beyonder, who had possessed the body of Ulysses Klaue, because why hadn’t he, managed to bring Steve back only for him to just get disintegrated again. Tough day for a World War II vet. And then he brought him back again because why not? Thankfully, the last time stuck, because otherwise, it’s a pretty horrifying time loop. What is this, the end of Dr. Strange? Spoiler warning. Cap died again during the events of Punisher Captain America: Blood and Glory, and in this story, Punisher gets mind controlled and winds up shooting Cap, and by all accounts, Cap is, like, super dead. They even have a funeral for him. He’s gotta be dead, right? Wrong! Cap faked his death so that he and Punisher could get the drop on the badguys! The Punisher also revealed that he’s into some seriously weird stuff involving his balls. And you know what? Not gonna kink shame, you do you, Frank. Cap died again a few years later in 1995’s Captain America number 443, when he learned that his heart will stop because the Super Soldier Serum in his body is finally wearing off. Once again, Cap has a heartfelt funeral where then president Bill Clinton actually carried his coffin, but as it turned out, he’d been saved at the last second by a good Samaritan who actually turned out to be the worst Samaritan of them all, the Red Skull! And the Red Skull had actually cloned Steve’s body and was living in it like some sort of beef condo. It’s, yeah, I know. This is my reaction, too. Why? In 2007, Steve died horrifically in the aftermath of Civil War, shot in the back by Crossbones after taking a bullet meant for someone else, and finished off by a mind-controlled Sharon Carter, where he was deliberately, 100% totally murdered and dead forever. And that’s what I would say if comics weren’t full of the reddest herrings known to mankind. Cap was seemingly dead for a year or so, but in actuality, he was frozen in space and time, thanks to whatever weird, dumb comic gun that Sharon Carter used. (stammers) So mad about that still. Thor. How would you kill a god? The answer, it would seem, is very carefully, or just be insanely powerful like Thanos, or the beings behind Ragnarok. It’s not just a hilarious buddy comedy, it’s also an apocalyptic event that killed Thor during the events of Avengers Disassembled. Ragnarok, which means twilight of the gods, comes at long last for Thor and the rest of the Asgardians. And while Thor allows himself to be killed as well as his people, he does so after destroying the gods known as Those Who Sit Above in Shadow, who have been gaining power from ritually murdering and recreating the Asgardians as part of this Ragnarok cycle. In truth, Thor didn’t die, rather he was just hangin’ out in a void of non-existence where he remained until his former human alter ego Donald Blake touched Mjolnir back on Earth and summoned him once more. I mean, who among us isn’t just chillin’ in a void of non-existence? I wish I was. (somber piano music) During the Fear Itself arc, Thor died in his father’s arms after defeating his uncle in single combat who had taken the form of a massive dragon. Of course, Thor wouldn’t stay dead for very long. Though all memory of him was erased, Loki and Silver Surfer managed to help rescue him from limbo and bring Thor back to the land of the living where he lost 200 pounds of muscle and now hosts Because Science. (clunking) (grunts) Black Widow. Now usually, Natasha Romanov, AKA Black Widow, is the one who’s dealing out death with her leet assassin skills, but even the best of the best in the Marvel Universe can slip up and buy the farm, and in Black Widow’s case, she was poisoned to death by agents of the evil ninja clan the Hand. But thankfully, she got better, thanks to Stone, a member of the group called the Chaste, which is a hilarious name. What, are they just like, “We don’t smooch anyone! “But we’ll revive you, milady.” During the events of Secret Wars, Earth 616 was about to be destroyed because another reality was going to collide with it. Black Widow’s tasked with piloting a ship carrying a handpicked group beyond the barriers of reality so they could essentially resurrect the human race. Unfortunately, that ship was shot down while trying to escape, and it exploded with Natasha and countless others still on board. Thankfully, Natasha returned to the land of the living when Black Panther used the Infinity Gauntlet to bring the Marvel Universe back to the status quo. Last and definitely least, during Secret Empire, everyone’s favorite storyline, Captain America broke her neck with his shield, killing Black Widow on the spot. And she very likely was dead until those silly scientists and tricksy torturers at the Red Room got their hands on Natasha and brought her back to life. And it just goes to show that anything is possible if you have ties to a shadowy organization with access to unspeakable technology and limitless resources. (rasping) Hawkeye. The purplest archer in all the land has learned the hard way that he is but a mere mortal fighting in situations where he is often wildly out of his depth. Like that time in 2004’s Avengers Disassembled story arc, where Hawkeye’s quiver full of explosive arrows catches on fire during a battle with the Kree. And in his final moments, he commandeers a Kree jetpack and turns himself into a human cruise missile to blow up both himself and a massive Kree battleship to save his friends. This tragedy was later undone when Scarlet Witch willed him back into existence during the House of M storyline, although death would come for him pretty swiftly during that same storyline when he shot Scarlet Witch with an arrow and she in turn erased him from existence again in the blink of an eye. Maybe the Avengers should be less concerned with Thanos and more concerned with Wanda Maximoff. The Hulk. Now despite his crippling anger management issues, Bruce Banner’s big green alter ego is pretty damn near indestructible. Yet no one is immortal in the Marvel Universe, even characters who are seemingly immortal. Hulk has actually died many, many times, especially in What If stories and weird future tales, but most recently, he was murdered in cold blood by someone he trusted dearly. Hawkeye! When the precognitive Inhuman Ulysses Cain had a premonition that Bruce Banner was gonna turn into the Hulk and kill everyone, Hawkeye took preemptive action and shot Banner with an arrow, killing him instantly. Thanos also killed Hulk in a more recent non-Infinity War context. In the Thanos ongoing series, a futuristic version of Thanos stabbed a massive sword through both a de-Hulked Bruce Banner and the Silver Surfer, leaving Bruce a lifeless heap on the ground, and the Silver Surfer with a porthole in his chest. Now unlike his counterpart in the MCU, Hulk has killed himself at one point, but not how you’re thinking. After traveling to the future, Hulk faced off with an evil version of himself named Maestro who promptly broke Hulk’s neck in their first battle and then had Hulk nursed back to health for some reason. Eventually, though, our Bruce Banner prevailed by sending Maestro back in time to the precise moment the gamma bomb that created him detonated, obliterating Maestro and leaving Bruce Banner with yet another thing to be traumatically anxious about. And that is a brief history of the Avengers dying again, and again, and again in the comics. But tell me, which Avengers comic book death meant the most to you? What would you add to this list? Let me know in the comments below, and give me a dead-ass thumbs up while you’re there. Be sure to like, subscribe, and hit that notification bell, or else you might miss next week’s episode about the story of earth’s mightiest heroes assembling their forces to prevent a high school-aged lycanthrope from surfing on top of a car and being awesome as hell at basketball in Avengers Infiniteen Wolf. Until next time, keep on diggin’. (tonal music)

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  1. I already watched the movie. I assure you that there will be I think 3 kissing scenes. One will be a suprising one, one will be like someone is gonna say "Finally they kissed". The last one I'm not sure

  2. Here is who dies in Infinity War, SPOILERS!

    Loki, Heimdall, Vision, Star-Lord, Drax, Mantis, Groot, Gamora, Dr. Strange, Spider-Man, Black Panther, Scarlett Witch, The Winter Soldier, Falcon, Maria Hill and Fury

  3. I don't care if they kill off characters in the MCU, so long as the fucking Liberals don't make all their replacements Female just "because"!

    Seriously! Giving a character a vagina because it's fits the Liberal agenda just ruins everything.
    Characters should make sense. I don't want to see Sister Act 2019 with all Male Nuns. That wouldn't make any fucking sense.

  4. PETER QUIL THE STAR LORD IS THE MVP in the INFINITY WAR by the way!. that is why he's my favorite MARVEL character.

  5. I'm not going to spoil anything, but it's going to be a loooooong year guys! Tip: Just open your ears when you hear Dr Strange and Peter Quil to get the full meaning!
    I can't wait for your theories guys!

  6. Plz do a video explaining your lizard language. I do not want to type a search “Illuminati lizard people”. Not going down that rabbit hole

  7. All comic book characters that we care about are effectively immortal. There's always a super serum, or a clone, or a mysterious deus ex machina who resurrects them, or a "good enough" replacement from the multiverse, or a strong will that bends the threads of fate, or another writer who elects to ignore previous events. I'm just here to enjoy the ride 🙂


  9. spoiler alert for infinity war

    Hey, hey dan. How's it feel making a whole video that you were completely wrong?

  10. I'ma going to be the 1st to say that Secret Empire was awful. That was nothing but a cash grab next to Venomverse for Marvel. Thank God Cebulski is an Executive editor now. Marvel has pulled themselves back from the grave, Hunt for Wolverine is going to be epic

  11. PLEASE<SOMEONE< WHERE CAN I BUY THAT PORG T-SHIRT DAN IS WEARING?!!! Sorry for yelling but there is a huge hole in my life where this tshirt should be.

  12. in the description it says something about some of our hero's biting the dust… hurts so much more now

  13. One of my favorite Comics is Infinity Gauntlet With my favorite villain of the entire marvel universe Thanos plus it has Adam warlock and nova.

  14. Most people have not even read Infinity Gauntlet and Civil War2 . If you have read those you will see a lot of parallels in The movies

  15. dude are u a time traveler u predicted the avengers endgame who dies(ironman), and at the backround of you is 100% the mark 85 WTF MEN…

  16. Spoilers for Endgame…

    Damn… At least Iron man's death was heroic in Endgame😭😭😭

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