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Comic Book Storylines That Ended On Cliffhangers That Will Never Be Resolved

November 25, 2020 59 votes 15 voters14 items

List RulesVote up the storylines that ended on a frustratingly open-ended note.

When comic book story arcs come to an end - whether satisfying or unsatisfying - fans get to move on with their lives and find their next comic book obsession. But what about the comic book cliffhangers that never get resolved? How do fans move on from stories that go unfinished?

What do fans do when only a single issue comes out of a planned series, as was the case with Grant Morrison's WildC.A.T.s reboot? What about abandoned mysteries that will never get solved, like why Batman had a secret file on Dick Grayson's parents? What happens when old storylines are just completely ignored in later issues? There are just some storylines that will never be resolved.

And if you're in the mood for even more cliffhanger goodness, check out Brian Cronin's "Left Unresolved" series over at CBR!

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    Batman Might Have Had Something To Do With The Flying Graysons' Demise

    Photo: DC Comics

    When Dick Grayson took over the mantle of Batman, it was a pretty big deal for the former Boy Wonder. Though Bruce Wayne would obviously return to take back the cowl, Grayson's stint as the Caped Crusader is beloved by many fans to this very day. But one of the biggest cliffhangers in Batman history was never resolved, and probably never will be.

    The final pages of Batman #691 show Grayson discovering a USB stick that Bruce had hidden away in the Batcave. When the former Robin inserts the data stick into the Batmobile to see what's on it, he is shocked to find the case file of his parents' slaying. Was Bruce involved with the Graysons' demise somehow? Did he figure some other secret out? Why didn't he keep Dick informed about his own parents? We'll never know.

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    Frustrating ending?
  • 2

    Grant Morrison's WildC.A.T.s Reboot Was Canceled After One Issue

    Photo: DC Comics

    Spinning out of the 1992 founding of creator-owned comic book company Image Comics, Brandon Choi and Jim Lee's WildC.A.T.s kicked off the "Wildstorm Universe" and quickly became a fan favorite thanks in no small part to Lee's legendary artwork. Three volumes of the comic came and went over the next 10 or so years, but the big reboot of volume four, spearheaded by the return of Lee and the addition of superstar writer Grant Morrison, was meant to be the comic's return to glory.

    Unfortunately, after numerous delays derailed the series, the reboot only lasted one issue. That doesn't mean Morrison didn't have grand plans for the series, though. The script for the second issue - titled "Life and Death in an Axial Age" - was included in the 2017 book Wildstorm: A Celebration of 25 Years. And if this Reed Beebe article breaking down the script is to be believed, it was suitably wild in classic Morrison fashion.

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    Frustrating ending?
  • 3

    F.A.C.A.D.E. Went From Spider-Man Mystery To Running Joke

    Thanks to unwieldy storylines like the "Clone Saga," the 1990s have a reputation for being the worst decade of Spider-Man comics. Marvel's '90s sloppiness with its resident web-head can be summarized with one acronym: F.A.C.A.D.E., or Full Acclimation Combat and Defence Explo-skeleton.

    As seen in Web of Spider-Man #113-116, the mystery behind the theft of the F.A.C.A.D.E. suit, the culprit's slaying of Daily Bugle photographer Lance Bannon, and the thief's eventual disappearance were going to be part of a long-running storyline - but it didn't catch on, and was just left to blow away with the wind. Writers have used the character's identity as a joke over the years, with jabs at the storyline appearing in Dark Reign Files #1 and Amazing Spider-Man #678.

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  • 4

    Vision Knows A Secret About Scarlet Witch That Was Lost To A Creative Shakeup

    Rick Remender is a great comic book writer. Whether it's his awesome work on Marvel books like Captain America and Uncanny Avengers, or his work for Image Comics like Deadly Class and Black Science, the guy knows what he's doing. But the best-laid plans of even the most talented comic book writers don't always work out.

    During Remender's second volume of Uncanny Avengers, the Vision discovers some horrible secret about the Scarlet Witch. Although he initially rushes to tell her, he changes his mind while thinking, "The truth would crush her."

    What is the secret? Who's to say? The second volume of Uncanny Avengers only got five issues before the line-wide 2015 mega-event Secret Wars wiped everything out, so Remender never got to continue his big mystery. 

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    Frustrating ending?