Loki and 5 other fictional characters who refuse to stay dead
Is Tom Hiddleston’s Loki — a.k.a. everyone’s favorite Marvel Cinematic Universe malcontent — alive? That question has been widely pondered over the past few days thanks to a development in the MCU which, ironically, seems to prove that he is definitely dead — at least for now.
On Tuesday, Marvel released character posters to promote Avengers: Endgame (out April 26). Those characters who survived until the end of last year’s Avengers: Infinity War were shown in color. The faces of those who did not — many of whom perished in Thanos’ “snap” — were displayed in black and white. Loki was in the latter category, having been killed by Thanos near the start of Infinity War, but his presence in the list of poster subjects prompted some fans to speculate that we might see him in Endgame. As my colleague Anthony Breznican wrote, “He’s listed among ‘the fallen,’ but he wouldn’t be getting a poster if he didn’t return in some way. Looks like Loki’s death, once again, may be greatly exaggerated.”
Indeed, audiences have already seen Loki fake his death once, in Thor: The Dark World. Further fueling the theory that this God (of Mischief) is not dead? Last September, Disney revealed it is planning to feature a Hiddleston-starring Loki TV show on its streaming video service, although, of course, that could be a prequel set before the events of Infinity War.
Below, we take a look at five other fictional characters who just won’t stay dead.
Kit Harington’s Game of Thrones character seemed as dead as disco at the end of the show’s season 5 finale, stabbed to death by Owen Teale’s Alliser Thorne and his accomplices. But, just like disco, Snow returned, brought back to life in the next season by the sorceress Melisandre. Time — and specifically the show’s upcoming final season — seems likely to further test his indestructibility.
Author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle killed off his famous creation in the 1893 short story titled “The Final Problem,” having Holmes and his archenemy Moriarty fall to their death. But Doyle later revived the sleuth in the 1903 tale, “The Adventure of the Empty House.” More than a century on, Holmes can be seen in two TV shows — Sherlock and Elementary — and a Robert Downey Jr.-starring film franchise.
Given how much time Sarah Michelle Gellar‘s Slayer spent fighting undead vampires it seems only fair that she got a second — and third — chance at life. Buffy first passed away in the season 1 finale of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and then again in the finale of season 5. Neither demise stuck.
In the comics, Clark Kent died in 1993’s Superman #75, killed by Doomsday as part of a crossover event which was actually called The Death of Superman. Turns out, it should have been called the Let’s Pretend Superman is Dead to Goose Sales Figures But Then Bring Him Back…of Superman. Or, you know, something snappier.
For horror movie villains, regularly dying is just part of life. But Robert Englund’s Freddy Krueger can claim to have appeared in a film whose title definitively stated his demise, twice: 1991’s Rachel Talalay-directed Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare. And yet, Englund’s psycho would return in both Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (1994) and Freddy vs. Jason (2003). The latter seemed like a deliberate poke-in-the-eye to the Grim Reaper given how many times Krueger’s adversary, Jason Voorhees, has also returned from the grave.