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Omar Karindu


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 4,242


I was just thinking about how rare it is to see villains tried and executed for their crimes, even now that every other villain is a mass murderer. At best, you get mentions that they're sentenced to capital punishment or stories where, for once, they're innocent of the crime and the hero must prevent a miscarriage of justice.

So I figured I'd get the ball rolling on those rare cases in which bad guys actually go through some sort of legal process and are executed. These executions may not stick, mind you, but the state apparently tries once in awhile.

Bear in mind that I'm looking for legal executions specifically; legal deaths like the Crime-Master being shot by the police in a standoff or utterly illegitimate processes like HYDRA's show trials for failed operatives and the likes of Baron Strucker or the Neverland concentration camp really don't count in terms of what I'm asking about. I'd also like to avoid real people who appeared as villains in comics, though: Nazis and Mussolini and so forth shouldn't count here.

A popular variant is to make the execution the origin, rather than the finish, of a supervillain. Minor Midnight Sons enemy Short Circuit, for instance was empowered by the electric chair, and at least one of the Externals only discovered his immortality after a hanging. I'm not sure I'd count either one, since I'm more interested in stories that use legal execution as the villain's comeuppance. The dismantling of sentient robots and the like by government strikes me as a gray area, but as long as it's the result of some kind of real legal process and not a "heat of battle" situation, I figure they're close enough. Alas, the Vision's the only example I can think of here, and he's not really a villain getting comeuppance at the end of a story when it happens to him.

At Marvel, I honestly can't think of any! DC had a few I know of, mostly in the 1940s, but Marvel...not so much.




- Omar Karindu
"For your information, I don't have an ego. My Facebook photo is a landscape."
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Insanity




Great idea for a thread. The only execution I can think of off the top of my head is Electro. Wasnt he depowered and given the chair, which recharged him?


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ChrisBechtloff




I guess a lawyer could argue insanity what with him being semi possessed by an alien. But honestly hes killed countless people and shows zero remorse.


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Omar Karindu


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 4,242


Electro was put into an electric chair, but it was part of an experiment to enhance his powers that he volunteered for. In addition, the experiment was carried out by the Rose (Jacob Conover) and Delilah, not by any legal authority.

The experiment mentioned did produce a memorable cover, though, and on that cover Electro was misleadingly depicted in a prison uniform.

Earlier, Electro also used an electric chair in his carnival act during a brief period of reform in the "Light the Night" arc in adjectiveless Spider-Man.






- Omar Karindu
"For your information, I don't have an ego. My Facebook photo is a landscape."
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Omar Karindu


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 4,242


There's soooo much to write about the way comics abuse the concepts of diminished capacity and insanity to keep villains out of the execution chamber. Batman's book is hardly to blame on that score, as such tricks were being done back in the Golden Age when Batman's own villains were, with the exception of Two-Face and some other accident-victim types, treated as totally sane and sent to regular prisons.

In fact, the Joker actually had a story in the 1950s that had him faking insanity in order to be committed to an asylum!

Say, wasn't this Marvel board once upon a time? I think I took a wrong turn at Albuquerque.




- Omar Karindu
"For your information, I don't have an ego. My Facebook photo is a landscape."
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Rion




Ultimate Hulk was legally executed. It didn't work, but the intention was definitely there.



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TJ Burns





Depending on your definition of the term "villain", the Punisher was executed for his crimes in the first issue of his Ostrander-written series.


TJB


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Omar Karindu


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 4,242


That one occurred to me, but it was something of a grey area. But I figure it counts, because the general circumstance is so weird anyway. For the record, didn't he survive because the execution was sabotaged by the Geraci crime family? And wasn't Bullseye in attendance disguised as the priest?

Wolverine has, I'm fairly sure, been executed somewhere or other and survived due to his healing factor.




- Omar Karindu
"For your information, I don't have an ego. My Facebook photo is a landscape."
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TJ Burns





Wolverine was executed by the Nazis repeatedly, although I'm fairly sure there was no trial, since it was in a concentration camp.

Yeah, the Geracis deliberately screwed with Frank's execution and the crimes that he was convicted of were Bullseye's anyway, so this is a pretty twisted example. Still, he was on trial during the issue, convicted, sentenced to die, and executed legally, so this may be as close as it gets.

The only other example that comes to mind for me is the legal execution of Father Time's father in his Golden Age origin story.


TJB


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Omar Karindu


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 4,242


Yeah, I'm simply not going to call concentration camps legal execution because, well, can anyone possibly call them legitimate or process-based in any meaningful sense?




- Omar Karindu
"For your information, I don't have an ego. My Facebook photo is a landscape."
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Giant Ant




Back in Ghost Rider #57, although he wasn't super-powered before his execution....

http://www.marvunapp.com/Appendix/appariti.htm


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Rion




nt



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Omar Karindu


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 4,242


It's a good point, Ultimate Hulk, and maybe the clearest example around now that I think about it.




- Omar Karindu
"For your information, I don't have an ego. My Facebook photo is a landscape."
Posted with Apple Safari 3.2.1 on MacOS X
Merzah the Mystic




ive always imagined hat the MU worked on a different legal system than our universe. for example, heroes are rarely if ever called to the witness stand against villains even if the heroes might be the most prominent witness to the villains crimes. Also, there seems to be some slight right to privacy in not unmasking captured heroes, even if it is unofficial, something wed never even consider in the real world.

id always assumed that the death penalty is not used in the united states of the MU. or at least so rarely used that its basically forbidden (like in the real world EU).

I always thoght there were some good stories lurking in dealing with the death penalty. but i think for several reasons writers avoid it like the plague. first off, its a controversial subject. writers get nervous for their jobs anytime they get too close to something that could cause the wrong kind of controversy. which is why we get countries like Madripoor, Halwan, Costa Verde and Madeupistan. then, well, villains always come back from the dead anyway, so why bother.

It would be interesting to judge the villain most likely to be executed if captured in the real world. (Id vote for the red skull. He seems most likely to be tried for war crimes)


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Merzah the Mystic




that just reminded me. Mark Grunwald had the Red Skull put on trial in Germany in the early nineties for war crimes and sentenced to execution.

Which is kind of wierd since the death penalty is illegal in Germany. But I guess Grunwald didnt know that.


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Jared







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Madison Carter




Headed out the door, so don't have time to go through all the responses just now, so these may have already been brought up.

Crazy Eight (aka Infinity) was executed in an issue of Incredible Hulk for killing a politician.

The Nightstalkers foe Short-Circuit was put in the electric chair for his crimes, but it didn't work out so well afterwards.


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