Total Nerd The Darkest Stories in Comics  

Ranker Comics
17.6k votes 2.9k voters 938k views 27 items Embed

List Rules Vote up the best dark story storylines in comic books.

Out of all the comic book films that have been released in the last ten years, Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight series is arguably the darkest. But when you compare those films to the stories that they’re based on, they barely scratch the surface of the darkness beneath. And outside of the comic book world of Batman, there’s an entire history of writers pushing boundaries and inspiring their peers to completely break the rules. The stories on this list are some of the darkest tales that ever graced the pages of a comic book, and we doubt you’ll ever see them on the big screen.

A lot of the stories detailed within this list are NSFW and may be triggering, so if you’re worried about seeing, or reading about something graphic you may want to read one of our lists about fluffiest kittens. The stories on this list come from mainstream and indie comic imprints, but honestly, some of the most shocking story lines come from the majors.

On the lineup, we have shocking character deaths, sexual assaults committed by heroes and villains alike, and at least one account of a character cutting themselves out of another character’s stomach; if any of that piques your fancy then we want to hear from you. After you pour over this list of comic book stories that are too dark to film, we want to know which story you think is the darkest. If there’s a story we missed, leave us a comment and fill us in on the action.
1 1,595 VOTES

Batman: the Killing Joke


Batman: the Killing Joke is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Darkest Stories in Comics
Photo: via Reddit
Originally, The Killing Joke was meant to be an Elseworlds version of the Batman tale, but for some reason DC decided to make Alan Moore's SUPER GRAPHIC story of the Joker paralyzing and physically abusing Barbara Gordon in front of her father canon. 

Also Ranked

#24 on The Best Batman Comics

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2 1,238 VOTES

Wolverine: Old Man Logan


Wolverine: Old Man Logan is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Darkest Stories in Comics
Photo: via Twitter
The entire "Old Man Logan" storyline is a killer comic that will probably be adapted some day, but the revelation that Wolverine slaughtered his friends and family in the X-Mansion under the hypnotic spell of Mysterio is probably too horrendous to commit to celluloid. There's also the tidbit about Wolverine carving his way out of the Hulk, that might be a bit too much for some viewers to stomach.
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Sue Dibny is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Darkest Stories in Comics
Photo: Patrick Peccatte/Flickr
Not only is this storyline super dark, but it's also one of the most unnecessary stories in comic book history. The story opens with Sue being murdered, and the Justice League going on an adventure to find the murderer. It's revealed that Dr. Light teleported to the JL Watchtower, where he found Dibny alone where he attacked and raped her. Not content with simply sending him to jail, the League and Zatanna neuter his mind as punishment for his actions.

Also Ranked

#81 on The Best Members of the Justice League and JLA

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4 774 VOTES

Kraven's Last Hunt


Kraven's Last Hunt is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Darkest Stories in Comics
Photo: via Reddit
Kraven was always kind of a B-Team bad guy in the Marvel universe, but this story made him an incredibly interesting character. After years of hunting Spiderman, Kraven finally catches him, kills him (or so he thinks) and then buries him. Kraven then dons the Spidey costume and has fun until Parker can dig his way out of the ground and catch. Feeling like he already won, Kraven writes a confession to the police before blowing his brains out with a shot gun. The end.
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