How "DC Universe: Rebirth" Fulfills Its Promise of Restoring Legacy to DC Comics
Every day in November we will reveal the greatest stories ever told starring a particular character or written/drawn by a particular creator (and throughout the month, you’ll get daily chances to vote for NEXT week’s lists). These lists are voted on by YOU, the reader!
Here is the list of characters/creators featured so far (along with the rules on how to vote).
Today’s list is the Greatest Deathstroke the Terminator Stories Ever Told!
10. Deathstroke the Terminator #27-34 “World Tour ’93”
After Slade Wilson’s ex-wife is kidnapped, Wilson travels the globe searching for her and, naturally enough, getting caught up in a global conspiracy. This action-packed romp through various intriguing locales was written by Marv Wolfman and drawn by Steve Erwin and Will Blyberg.
9. DC Universe: Last Will and Testament #1
With Final Crisis approaching, Geo-Force decides to spend what might be his last days on Earth taking out Deathstroke (for both what Deathstroke did to Geo-Force’s sister, Terra, and for Deathstroke blackmailing Geo-Force in the pages of Justice League of America). To what lengths will Geo-Force go to stop Deathstroke? Find out in this one-shot written by Brad Meltzer and drawn by Andy Kubert, Joe Kubert and John Dell.
8. The New Teen Titans #2 “Today…the Terminator!”
This is where we first meet Deathstroke, and his intriguing origin. The evil organization known as HIVE tries to hire him to kill the Titans. When he turns down the offer, they hire his son, instead, and give him powers like Deathstroke’s (he takes the name the Ravager). When his son dies in battle (after Deathstroke warns him not to take HIVE up on their deal), the Terminator decides to take on his son’s contract himself, setting up years of stories to come! Written by Wolfman and George Perez with art by Perez and Romeo Tanghal.
7. Deathstroke the Terminator #1-5 “Full Cycle”
Deathstroke’s ongoing series begins with the same things that began Wilson’s comic book career – the Ravager and the death of a son. A new person is calling himself the Ravager and he tries to kill Wilson’s ex-wife. Wilson is forced to confront this new Ravager and, in turn, his own past (and his actions in Titans Hunt, which he has not yet revealed to his ex-wife)! This debuted the form that most future Marv Wolfman issues of Deathstroke took – a rollicking action-filled adventure filled with complex intrigue. The art was by Steve Erwin and Will Blyberg.
6. Deathstroke the Hunted #0, 41-47/Deathstroke #48-50 “Deathstroke the Hunted”
This is a tricky one, numbers-wise, as Deathstroke is only “hunted” through issue #46 or so (and the “Hunted” part is dropped from the title with issue #47), but the wrap-up of the story is really in #48-50, so I’m lumping it all together. The story is about a mysterious new villain called the Crimelord who frames Deathstroke for the murder of a US Senator. Deathstroke must clear his name while being hunted by superheroes. Written by Wolfman with art by Sergio Cariello and Will Blyberg (a few other inkers helped out on issues).
5. Deathstroke the Terminator #6-9 “City of Assassins”
Deathstroke ends up in Gotham City, where he confronts and then teams up with Batman (in an uneasy alliance). Meanwhile, rogue Gotham cop Patricia Trayce becomes intrigued by Deathstroke, leading to her becoming a vigilante, as well. Written by Wolfman with art by Erwin and Blyberg.
4. Identity Crisis #3 “Serial Killer”
Doctor Light hires Deathstroke to protect him from the Justice League (who think that Light killed Sue Dibny). In a memorable sequence, Deathstroke takes on a large chunk of the Justice League at once and handles himself extremely well (before they ultimately take him out). Written by Brad Meltzer with art by Rags Morales and Michael Bair.
3. New Titans #71-84 “Titans Hunt”
When the vast majority of the Titans are captured by the evil organization known as the Wildebeests, Deathstroke teams up with his former enemy, Nightwing, to save the Titans – or at least Wilson’s son, the Titan known as Jericho. However, it turns out that Jericho IS the bad guy! Someone in the voting made a great comment about this story – Deathstroke had been trying to kill the Titans for over a decade at this point, and when he finally succeeds…well…it is not the Titan he ever would have imagined that he would be killing. Written by Wolfman with art by Tom Grummett, Al Vey and some fill-in artists.
2. Tales of the Teen Titans #53-55 “The Trial of the Terminator”
Changeling confronts Deathstroke for his actions in the Judas Contract. The two surprisingly end up having a heart-to-heart conversation instead. I did a write-up on the story here, if you’d like to learn more about it.
1. Tales of the Teen Titans #42-44, Annual #1 “The Judas Contract”
Marv Wolfman, George Perez and Dick Giordano (with Mike DeCarlo) tell the story of when Deathstroke finally realized the contract his son had made with HIVE forty issues earlier! He does this through his traitor in the Titans, Terra! However, Deathstroke is undone by both Dick Grayson (now taking the name Nightwing) and Wilson’s ex-wife and his son, who becomes a hero just to stop his father. One of the most classic storylines of the 1980s.
That’s the list! Agree? Disagree? Let me know!
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