- Some DC Comics heroes, like Batman and Superman, have a strict no-killing policy, but others such as Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, and Green Arrow don’t hesitate to kill when necessary.
- Green Lanterns, like Jon Stewart and Kilowog, have used lethal force against the enemies of the Green Lantern Corps, such as the Sinestro Corps.
- Wonder Woman, a compassionate warrior, has killed villains like Maxwell Lord to protect innocent lives when there was no other choice. She is not afraid to use weapons like swords and shields.
There is a strict rule among some of the best DC Comics heroes, and that rule is no killing. For some heroes, like Batman, killing is crossing a line, to which there is no way back. However, these DC Comics heroes, scoff at the thought, and when the time comes, they do not hesitate to kill, as they do what is right for the innocent lives that they are trying to protect.
DC Comics: Best Batman Stories Of 2023, Ranked
Batman often holds the title of DC Comics’ most popular superhero, and these stories from 2023 prove just why.
Warriors and vigilantes have one thing in common on this list, and that’s the fact that they have killed, and it’s likely that they will kill again. Heroes like Batman and Superman adhere to the no-kill policy that defines them, but other iconic and well-known DC Comics heroes do not follow suit.
6 Green Lantern
Notable Kills: The Sinestro Corps
There have been many Green Lanterns over the years that have led the forefront of the Green Lantern Corps. From Han Jordan to Jon Stewart, to even Kilowog. Many Green Lanterns get their chance to shine. In essence, the Green Lanterns are peacekeepers, the police force in the universe that patrol specific Sectors and adhere to the laws established by the Guardians of Oa.
To ensure these laws are the staple of a Green Lantern, the rings that are charged by their willpower will not commit lethal acts. However, there have been some instances when the enemies of the Green Lanterns have overpowered them, and the Guardians of Oa changed the law to allow lethal force. Lanterns like Jon Stewart and Kilowog wasted no time in creating guns and swords from their ring constructs to fight against the evils of the Sinestro Corps in the Sinestro Corps War.
5 Wonder Woman
Notable Kills: Maxwell Lord
Few heroes in the DC Universe as as respected and loved as Wonder Woman. She’s an iconic character, and one that many have an adoration for. She stands tall as part of the Trinity alongside Batman and Superman, but she easily holds her own, especially with her Themysciran upbringing. Wonder Woman is perhaps the most compassionate, but she is still a warrior who will do what is right.
DC: Best Games With Playable Wonder Woman, Ranked
Until Wonder Woman receives her own solo game, fans can enjoy the following titles.
When faced with no other choice, Wonder Woman will not hesitate to kill, nor will she regret it. When the evils of Maxwell Lord took control of Superman, Wonder Woman decided to break the villain’s neck to free her friend and end the potential terrors that would wake on Earth as a result. Whilst some depictions of Wonder Woman have her Lasso of Truth more prominent, others have her proudly wielding a sword and shield for the warrior that she is.
4 Green Arrow
Notable Kills: Prometheus
Green Arrow is a liberal hero. He is deeply rooted in political issues and has been for decades. Green Arrow will always stand for what he believes is right, and he will refuse to let someone with superpowers tell him others. Green Arrow’s determination to follow his own path and ethics has led him to kill some of his foes in the past. Although it’s not something he enjoys, it’s a complete last resort.
One instance had Prometheus emerge, a villain of extreme intellect and tactical genius, a more evil version of Batman at a time when Batman was dead. When Prometheus plunged Star City into chaos, killing and injuring millions, including Roy Harper’s daughter, Lian. Stricken with vengeance, Green Arrow put an arrow in Prometheus’ skull without hesitation, showing that he will kill without remorse if there is no other option, as there was no telling just how far Prometheus could have gone if he was allowed to live.
3 Red Hood
Notable Kills: The Joker
Red Hood has had a strange time within DC. Starting as the second ward and Robin to Batman, Jason Todd was killed by the Joker, only to be resurrected by the mystical horrors of the Lazarus Pit. Yet, Jason would awaken in this new chance at life, forever altered, and forever scared by what had happened to him. Ever since that day, Jason Todd would not hesitate to kill those who needed a bullet, and the Red Hood was born.
DC: Worst Multiverse Earths To Live In
The one thing these Multiverse earths have in common: they’re all terrible places to live.
Whilst Red Hood is still a good guy, he has done his fair share of bad deeds. Yet, if there is one man he wishes to kill the most, it would be Joker, the man who took everything from him, including his life. Red Hood has killed the Joker in various DC Comics media before, including one of the Three Jokers in the main continuity.
Notable Kills: Despero
Hawkman is often regarded as the polar opposite of Green Arrow for his authoritarian views. The two heroes often clash heads, and whilst Oliver Queen will only kill if necessary, Hawkman seems to kill just about anyone who’s done something that he believes is wrong and forfeits their life onto his Nth Metal mace.
Whilst Hawkman hasn’t received much love in recent years, one comic in particular decided to showcase the death of Hawkman and featured the Justice League villain Despero. This villain is a threatening menace in terms of physical size and intellect, and to put him down once and for all, Hawkman used the Nth Metal in his bones to eviscerate his skull.
Notable Kills: Commander
Midnighter is one of the more adult heroes in the DC Universe. He may be respected by some and feared by others, for there are some times when he takes violence to an extreme. Midnighter is a great character, but one with violent tendencies that would even make Batman wince. However, if there is anything Midnighter does not tolerate, it’s criminals and someone abusing his lover, Apollo.
Due to Midnighter’s violent actions within the superhero world, he proudly became a member of The Authority, a superhero team that is dedicated to doing what they believe is right, regardless of the violent outcomes that are needed for it to happen. Considering these extreme methods, it’ll be interesting to see if Midnighter and The Authority remain this way for their DCU debut with Superman.
MORE: Best Open-World DC Games, Ranked