Death (Marvel)(01 - Personification of)
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The entity known as Death possesses unlimited power as it sees fit. It does not normally use such power directly, as it prefers to operate through other agents or to wait for its prey to fail and eventually die. Death manifests itself usually as a robed female skeleton, but can appear in virtually whatever manner it wishes.
Like Eternity, Lord Chaos and Master Order, and Infinity, Death is an abstract entity embodying the concept of the mortality and extinction, inasmuch as its opposite, Eternity, embodies life. Death and Eternity even regard themselves as siblings, having come into existence at the moment the universe was formed.
During the times that Death has manifested itself on the physical plane, it often takes the form of a skeletal female; however, the body Death chooses to manifest as can be in any form or size.
Death's motives and modus operandi are hard to fathom. It works in some kind of partnership with Galactus, a being who survived the destruction of the previous universe, and also provides some measure of power for Death-gods like Hela and demons like Mephisto, who are allowed to rule in her name over extradimensional realms inhabited by the souls of the dead.
Death seems to be always seeking out new conquests and may manipulate mortals with or without their knowledge in order to gain them. Death once attempted to destroy the vampire lord Dracula through human pawns because Dracula was depriving it of conquests by creating vampires who were neither truly alive nor truly dead. Death failed on that occasions, but Dracula eventually fell victim to permanent destruction.
Although Death ordinarily seems content to maintain a balance in the universe between its power and Eternity's Death will seize opportunities that arise to achieve dominance over Eternity. Death once appeared to the mad Titan Thanos in the form of a woman with whom he fell so much in love that he was willing to destroy the universe in order to please her. Indeed, nearly all of Thanos' activities from that point on involved his desire to win Death's favor. When Thanos possessed virtual omnipotence by means of the Infinity Gauntlet, however, Death, for reasons of its own, turned its back on him. Thanos himself has yet to fathom Death's motives for this relationship.
Death has on occasion taken the role of gamesman, having once played a tournament of champions with the Elder to the Universe called the Grandmaster, the end result of which proved the Grandmaster and fellow Elders immune to Death's power.
At one point, Death was "killed" by the Beyonder, who later "recreated" it. The implications of this on Death's nature are still a mystery.
Later, Death appeared to the Phoenix Force, claiming it to be the product of power of all life yet unborn, and thus somewhat an agent of Death and abstract entity the likes of Eternity and Death. Death helped to convince the Force to leave its then-current avatar, Rachel Summers.
Death has seemed to take a fascination with the mercenary known as Deadpool, appearing to him on several occasions in the context of a somewhat romantic nature. Again, the implications of this are still a mystery, even to Deadpool.
Death's ultimate goals are unknown. There may be a master plan guiding its movements or nothing more than random chance. Virtually all living creatures in the known universe must eventually surrender themselves to Death. Even the offshoot of humanity known as the Eternals and the otherwordly Asgardians age, although they do so very slowly, and will someday die. Olympians do not age, but can be killed by a sufficient powerful force. Galactus, the only known entity said to predate the creation of the universe itself, has since died. Death remains one of the greatest mysteries of the universe.
First Appearance: Strange Tales (1951) #2
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View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2006)
#3 Amazing Adult Fantasy (1961)
- 'Copperhead to Ethan Edwards'
#4 Annihilation Prologue (2006)
Annihilation: The Nova Corps Files (2006)
Annihilation: Saga (2007)
Avengers: Celestial Quest (2001)
#2 Black Panther (2005)
- 'Madonna Reborn!'#3
- 'What Goes Around...'#4
- 'The Chase!'#7
- 'Death Itself!'
TPB vol. 05 Captain Marvel (1968)
- 'Four The Hard Way'#30
- 'Absolutely No Way To In Part 3 Of 3'
#26 Captain Marvel (1999)
- 'Trapped on Titan!'#28
- 'When Titans Collide!'#29
- '...To Be Free From Control!'#31
- 'The Beginning of the End!'#32
- 'Thanos the Insane God!'#33
- 'The God Himself'
#17 Chamber of Darkness (1969)
- 'Cheating Death'#18
- 'Who Let the Gods Out?'
#8 Chaos War: Ares (2011)
- 'The Beast That Walks Like A Man!'
Cosmic Powers Unlimited (1995)
Damage Control (vol. 3) (1991)
#4 Deadpool (1997)
- 'Cleanliness is Next to Godliness'
#33 Deadpool (2008)
- 'The End of the End or Happy Entrails to You...'#34
- 'Chapter X, Verse One: Sending in the Clowns'#35
- 'Chapter X, Verse Two'#36
- 'Chapter X, Verse Three'#37
- 'Chapter X, Verse Four: Benediction'#61
- 'Funeral for a Freak, Part 1 of 4: 'Nuff Said!'
#15 Deadpool/Death '98 (1998)
- 'Want You To Want Me: Part 1: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Metaphors'#36
- 'Round 2'#38
- 'Operation: Annihilation, Part Two: Clear And Present Anger'#42
- 'Institutionalized, Conclusion'#49.1
- 'Deadpool: The Musical!'#50
- 'Dead Part One'
#1 Die Rächer (1979)
- 'A Kiss, A Curse, A Cure'
#23 Docteur Strange (1979)
- 'Angriff aus dem Hinterhalt'
Doctor Strange (1974)
#4 Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme (1988)
- '...Where Bound'ries... Decay'#41
- 'Weep For the Soul of Man...'
#21 Dracula Lives (1973)
- 'Mindless in Manhattan'#45
- 'Death's Greatest Hits'
Encyclopædia Deadpoolica (1998)
#1 Excalibur (1988)
- 'The Encyclopædia Deadpoolica'
#25 Fantastic Four (1961)
- 'Guess Who's Coming For Phoenix?'
Fantastic Four (1968)
Free Comic Book Day 2014 (Guardians of the Galaxy) (2014)
Haunt of Horror (1974)
Infinity Gauntlet (1991)
#1 Infinity War (1992)
- 'From Bad to Worse'#3
- 'Preparations for War'#4
- 'Cosmic Battle on the Edge of the Universe!'#5
- 'Astral Conflagration'#6
- 'The Final Confrontation'
#2 Journey Into Mystery (1972)
- 'Ethereal Revisionism'
#9#10 Last Planet Standing (2006)
- 'The Terror of Tim Boo Ba!'#12
- 'Kiss of Death!'
Marvel Comics Presents (1988)
#109 Marvel Exklusiv (1998)
- 'Battle on the Brooklyn Bridge/Legion of the Doomed/It's Never Over/The Final Conflict'#110
- 'Undercover at the Black Moon Bar & Grill/Death's Dark Domain/A Killer's Rights/Night of the Ripper'#111
- 'Roadkill/Betrayal/Over Exposed/Menace of the Mad Abbot'
#20 Marvel Feature (1971)
- 'The Infinity Gauntlet - Die Ewige Fehde!'
#12 Marvel Graphic Novel (1982)
- 'The Bite of the Blood Brothers!'
#1 Marvel Hit-Comic (1989)
- 'The Death of Captain Marvel'
Marvel Super Hero Contest of Champions (1982)
#1 Marvel Universe: The End (2003)
- 'A Gathering of Heroes! Chapter 1'#3
- 'Chapter 4: Third Contest: Siege in the City of the Dead!'
#1 Mystery Tales (1952)
- 'The Cure'
Namor, The Sub-Mariner (1990)
#44 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2008)
- 'The Rime of the Ancient Sub-Mariner with Apologies to Samuel Taylor Coleridge'
HC vol. 03 Quasar (1989)
- 'Captain (Nextwave) to Elements of Doom'
#25 Secret Wars II (1985)
- 'All -- or Nothing!'#37
- 'Infinity Manifestations'#38
- 'Whose War Is this Anyway?'#49
- 'Women on the Verge'
#7 Silver Surfer (1987)
- 'Charge of the Dark Brigade!'
Annual 02 Silver Surfer/Warlock: Resurrection (1993)
- 'How Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth'#7
- 'Space Is Eternity'#17
- '... Even Demi-Gods Must Dream'#38
- 'The Answer'
#1 Solo Avengers (1987)
- 'The Pact (Part 1)'#2
- 'Death's Favor (Part 2)'
#17 Spider-Man (French edition) (1991)
- 'No One Gets Outta Here Alive!'
Spider-Man Comics Weekly (UK) (1973)
#159 Strange Tales (1951)
- 'Super Spider-Man with The Super-Heroes'#161
- 'Super Spider-Man with the Super-Heroes'
#1 Thanos Rising (2013)
- 'Samaritan, Part 1'
Thanos Sourcebook (2010)
Thanos: A God Up There Listening (Infinite) (2014)
The Amazing Spider-Man (1963)
#503 The Avengers (1963)
- 'Chasing a Dark Shadow'
The Defenders (1972)
The Marvel Encyclopedia (2006)
HC The Mighty Avengers (2007)
- 'The Marvel Encyclopedia'
The New Mutants (1983)
#41 The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (1983)
- 'Way of the Warrior'
#13 The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition (1985)
- 'Book of the Dead and Inactive 1 : Air-Walker to Man-Wolf'#13 (Newsstand Edition)
- 'Book of the Dead and Inactive 1 : Air-Walker to Man-Wolf'
#3 The Sensational She-Hulk (1989)
- 'Cloak to Doctor Octopus'
#53 The Thanos Imperative (2010)
- 'Death Becomes Her'
The Thanos Imperative: Devastation (2011)
The Thanos Imperative: Ignition (2010)
The Thanos Quest (1990)
#1 Universe X (2000)
- 'Schemes and Dreams'#2
- 'Games and Prizes'
War Is Hell (1973)
#9 Warlock (1972)
- 'War Is Hell!'#10
- 'The corridor'#11
- 'Winter kill!'#12
- 'My love must die!'#13
- 'Today's a lovely day to die!'#14
- 'The Duty Of A Man!'#15
- 'A Christmas Eve in Hell'
#10 Warlock and the Infinity Watch (1992)
- 'How Strange My Destiny! Part 1: The Rice! / Who is Thanos? / Enter the Redemption Principle!'
West Coast Avengers (1985)
What If? Newer Fantastic Four (2009)
#1 What If...? (1989)
- 'What If... Newer Fantastic Four'
#1 Wolverine (2014)
- 'What If the Avengers Had Lost The Evolutionary War?'
#8 X-Factor (1986)
- 'Three Months to Die: Games of Deceit and Death Part One of Two'#9
- 'Three Months to Die: Games of Deceit and Death Part Two of Two'
#248 X-Force (1991)
- 'Being Monet St. Croix'
X-Men Forever (2001)
- 'The Destiny Pact'#3
- 'All of God's Creatures'
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