Comic book writers don’t know how to handle pregnancy. On one hand, that’s understandable, considering that most people don’t know how to handle an actual pregnancy in the real world, let alone how something like that would work in the crazy world of superheroes. Also, it makes sense that since superheroes live bizarre lives full of both danger and adventure that even their regular, normal experiences would sometimes get dragged into that world. Still, there seems to be a common plot line in comics where pregnancy is used to heighten the drama, but then superhero drama is added to it, the whole thing goes crazy.
The problem with using pregnancy as a plot device in comics is that it’s an incredibly vulnerable topic. Also, many of the pregnancy plot lines in comics tend to deal with women being mistreated, abused or taken advantage of. It’s common for women’s bodies to be used against their will for some villainous entity to make a baby with. Often, the stories don’t deal with the consequences and victims of these situations. Instead, they’re often resolved the same way most conflicts are in comics: by people super punching each other again and again.
15. SCARLET WITCH’S FAKE TWINS
One of the strangest relationships in comics would have to be Vision and the Scarlet Witch, considering that one of them was a robot (or synthezoid) built by one of the Avengers’ deadliest enemies, Ultron. Still, their love was real and ultimately resulted in the two getting married and having twin boys named Billy and Tommy. Wanda gave birth in Vision and the Scarlet Witch #12 (1986) by Steve Englehart and Richard Howell.
For a while, it was believed that Wanda used her magic powers to create the children. Unfortunately, the babies were actually part of Mephisto’s soul, who eventually reabsorbed them into his essence, essentially killing Wanda’s kids. This would ultimately lead to Wanda going crazy, having her memory wiped and then going crazy again and causing Avengers Disassembled (2004).
14. TERRY MCGINNIS’ MOM, DAD AND BRUCE WAYNE
Batman Beyond took place in the year 2039 and starred Terry McGinnis as that era’s Batman. He became the high tech dark knight after meeting Bruce Wayne and borrowing the suit to avenge his murdered father. Unfortunately, Warren McGinnis wasn’t actually Terry’s father, Bruce was.
It was eventually revealed that Amanda Waller realized that the world would always need a Batman, so she obtained a sample of Bruce Wayne’s DNA and had it secretly injected into Warren McGinnis under the ruse of it being a flu injection. That means Mary McGinnis wasn’t carrying the child of the man she loved, but actually that of a world famous billionaire. Also, Waller planned on having McGinnis’ killed, trying to recreate Batman’s origins, minus the whole “vast family fortune” angle, because Waller doesn’t do nice things for people.
13. HAWKEYE AND SPIDER-MAN’S DAUGHTER
While the Hulk Gang was definitely the most unsettling part of Old Man Logan, they weren’t the only offspring that raised some eyebrows. Ashley Barton, the daughter of Hawkeye, is introduced as that era’s Spider-Girl (although she’s sometimes called by another, less safe-for-work name). If it seems strange that Hawkeye’s daughter is Spider-Girl, that’s because her mother is Tonya Parker, the daughter of Spider-Man.
So that means that at some point, Hawkeye married and had a kid with the daughter of one of his younger teammates. Granted, the world came to an end, so the dating pool would have been pretty limited, but that’s still a gross move on Hawkeye’s part. Luckily, Peter was apparently long dead by this point, so he never had to have any awkward conversations with his teammate/son-in-law.
12. TIGRA AND SKRULL HANK PYM
During the lead-up to Secret Invasion (2008), it was revealed that the Skrulls had infiltrated most of the Earth’s superhero teams, kidnapping and replacing members with undercover agents. In Secret Invasion #1 (2008) by Brian Bendis and Leinil Yu, it was revealed that Hank Pym had been replaced by a Skrull agent, which caused major problems considering his important standing in the superhero community at the time.
It also caused serious issues with Tigra, who had recently been revealed to be in a relationship with Pym (or really, a Skrull disguised as Pym). When Tigra found out, she realized she had no idea if the child was the real Hank’s or the Skrull imposter’s. In the end, she kept the child, who ended up being born a normal cat person baby, instead of some alien hybrid.
11. EDITH BANNER
Ang Lee’s Hulk (2003) made some slight changes to the character’s origins. Instead of simply being a scientist that was caught in a gamma bomb explosion, this version of Bruce Banner is exposed to massive amounts of the radiation in a lab accident. This causes him to begin transforming into the Hulk, although it’s revealed that it’s not the whole cause.
Bruce’s father, David, had been experimenting on himself before Bruce was born. His altered DNA caused Bruce to be born with the Hulk already inside of him, and the later gamma experiment merely awakened it. Baby Bruce is actually shown turning slightly green at one point, meaning that Edith was pregnant with a baby that could turn into a Hulk. Luckily Bruce never got too mad while he is still in the womb.
10. SUPERMAN AND LOIS LANE
After successfully launching the X-Men film franchise, director Bryan Singer attempted to bring the Man of Steel back to his glory days with Superman Returns (2006). Serving as a sequel to the first two “Superman” films (but ignoring the third and fourth), the plot revolved around Superman returning to Earth after spending years searching for Krypton. When he comes back, he finds that Lois Lane has a new fiancé, and also a son.
By the end of the film, however, it’s revealed that Superman is actually the father of the child, who also has super powers. Which is cool, except that after sleeping together in Superman 2 (1980), Clark erased Lois’ memory. Which means she got pregnant by someone she doesn’t know that she slept with. Since no sequel was ever made, audiences will never know how Supes even attempted to explain this.
9. MS MARVEL AND MARCUS
The Avengers might be Earth’s mightiest heroes, but they’re not necessarily Earth’s brightest bulbs. In Avengers #200 (1980) by Jim Shooter and George Perez, Ms. Marvel mysteriously becomes pregnant, and goes through the entire nine-month process in a matter of days. Initially, she had no idea how she even became pregnant, until the child informed her. Also, the child grew into an adult only a few hours after being born, which is why he was able to tell her what was up.
It turns out the baby was Marcus, the child of Immortus, and he had used Carol’s body to escape Limbo. Also, he had hypnotized her, so she ended up joining him in Limbo when his plan to escape failed. Despite the obviously inappropriate behavior on Marcus’ part, the Avengers just let Carol leave with him assuming that she had actually fallen in love.
8. ANYONE SPIDER-MAN GETS PREGNANT
The 2006 miniseries Spider-Man: Reign by Kaare Andrews told the story of a dark future where Peter Parker has given up being Spider-Man and has turned into a sad, lonely old man. While an authoritarian government has taken control of New York City, Peter is haunted by the memories of his dead wife, Mary Jane. It’s revealed that Peter is actually responsible for her death, since his bodily fluids are radioactive. So every time he made love to her, he was dosing her with lethal levels of radiation.
Ok, so this entry is a bit of a stretch, but it still made readers consider that Spider-Man has deadly sperm. Considering that he’s gotten Mary Jane pregnant in the mainstream comics, fans may have to wonder if Peter risked his wife’s life just by making love to her. Of course, another version of Mary Jane successfully gave birth to a healthy (and super powered) baby girl, who can be seen in Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #11.
7. VALERIA RICHARDS
Valeria Richards went from being one the Fantastic Four’s most heartbreaking moments to becoming one of their most convoluted storylines. In Fantastic Four #267 (1984) by John Byrne, Susan Richards sadly loses her baby during childbirth, due to complications arising from her unique physiology and her exposure to negative zone energy. This tragedy was later retconned, however, and it was revealed that Franklin Richards had saved his sister’s life, using his powers to send her to an alternate dimension.
The grown Valeria would later encounter the Fantastic Four in Fantastic Four #15 (1999) by Chris Claremont and Salvador Larocca. Later on, when Franklin depleted his powers, Valeria was reverted back to an unborn child in her mother’s womb. This time, she was successfully delivered, but only with Doctor Doom’s help. So basically, everything that could go wrong did go wrong.
6. CYCLOPS KNOCKS UP A CLONE OF HIS DEAD EX-GIRLFRIEND
After the death of Jean Grey, Scott Summers met a woman named Madelyne Pryor. She looked remarkably similar to Jean, which is something that Scott definitely noticed. He fell in love with her, they got married and eventually had a son. Normally, this whole scenario would be creepy enough, due to the implications that Scott just found a replacement Jean Grey.
Things got way more uncomfortable, however, when it was revealed that Madelyne was a literal copy of Jean Grey, otherwise known as a clone created by Mr Sinister. When the real Jean resurfaced, Scott abandoned Madelyne, hammering home the idea that she was nothing more than just a stand-in for Jean. The fact that Scott was willing to walk away from his son just shows where his mind was the entire time.
5. THE HULK GANG
Mark Millar and Steve McNiven’s Old Man Logan (2008) was set in an apocalyptic future where the villains had banded together and successfully defeated all of the heroes. This apparently led to the entire world going to hell, mostly in obvious ways but there were also some truly unexpected twists.
For example, in this future, there’s a territory known as Hulkland, which is ruled by the Hulk and his children, known as the Hulk Gang. Apparently, after the fall of the heroes, the Hulk’s personality took an incredibly creepy turn because the Hulk Gang’s mom is She-Hulk, Bruce Banner’s cousin. It’s implied that Banner is suffering from gamma poisoning, which has driven him insane, which explains the personality change but doesn’t make it any less creepy.
4. ITSU, DAKEN’S MOM
Writers love to mess with Wolverine, but when it came to his son Daken, things got way too dark. Daken first appeared in Wolverine Origins #10 (2007) by Daniel Way and Steve Dillon, and his tragic story started in Japan in the ’40s. Since Wolverine can’t go anywhere without people messing with him, the Winter Soldier was sent to kill his wife, Itsu, who was pregnant at the time.
Daken was cut from his mother’s womb, but survived simply because of his healing factor. That’s a rough way to enter the world. It’s no wonder Daken grew up to be a brutal killer. Eventually, he would reconnect with his father, but it wasn’t a happy reunion. Apparently, he held onto to some bad emotions about the death of his mom, and blamed his father for his role in her death.
3. EGO AND STAR-LORD’S MOM
It was revealed at the end of Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) that Star-Lord’s father wasn’t actually a human, but instead some mysterious life form that’s described only as “something ancient.” His father resurfaced in the sequel, where he revealed himself to be Ego, a celestial who took the form of a human in order to have a child.
It’s suggested that Star-Lord’s mom may have been aware that Ego was from the stars, but she definitely didn’t know that Ego only wanted a kid to use in a complicated plan to turn Earth (and a bunch of other planets) into more Egos. That means that Meredith was pregnant with a doomsday device, which is probably something that would’ve killed the romantic vibes she was picking up from Ego.
2. WANDA BLAKE
Given the tragic history between Wanda Blake and Al Simmons, her having children was always going to be bittersweet. She and Al had tried to have kids for many years, but it wasn’t until Al died that she remarried Terry Fitzgerald, and had a baby named Cyan. Wanda eventually became pregnant again, only this time it ended up bringing about the end of the world.
Wanda found out she was pregnant in Spawn #94 (2000) by Todd McFarlane, Brian Holguin and Greg Capullo. The timing of this pregnancy caused her husband to worry that he wasn’t the father. The babies ended up being reincarnations of God and Satan, and their return to Earth ended up bringing about Armageddon. Not only that, Wanda and Cyan spent most of the pregnancy being haunted by demonic entities, so it was a pretty bad time overall.
1. POWER GIRL
Another victim of “mystery pregnancy” is Power Girl. She first revealed the pregnancy in Justice League International #52 (1993) by Gerard Jones, Will Jacobs and Ron Randall. At first, it seemed as if either Green Lantern or Aquaman would be the father, but it was later revealed that, somewhat oddly, neither was. It turned out that the pregnancy had been caused by her grandfather, Arion (at least, that was his status at the time, as this was later retconned).
The baby eventually became Equinox, who was created to be the ultimate champion during the Zero Hour (1994) event. Since then, Equinox has disappeared, which is probably for the best. Stories where a woman gets pregnant without her own consent usually don’t make fans feel too good.
Can you think of any other problematic pregnancies in the world of comics? Let us know in the comments!
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