Nightmare Fuel: Superman vs. the Elite
"This isn't you, you don't do this!"
"I do now."
- Superman's entire means of dispatching the Elite. Even when it turns out Superman didn't actually kill any of them, and managed to avoid the apparent collateral damage to the civilians of Metropolis, the ways he made it look so convincing are terrifying.
- A simple poison dart, and he puts Pam in so much pain that her heart stops. In a single kill, he proves how much harm a single being can do when armed with a fortress full of doomsday weaponry.
- Vulnerability to magic? Hat tries to exploit that. Superman's response is to rip the air out of his lungs to the point that he can't even breathe, much alone say his magic words.
- He mocks Black with the whereabouts of Coldcast. Where is he? Heading for orbit at Mach Seven. For those unversed in such measurements, that means he's exiting Earth's atmosphere at over five thousand miles per hour. He says, quite simply, "If you had super-hearing, any second now, you'd hear the 'pop.'" Thus is the realization: if Superman wanted, he could carry most of his opponents to death.
- Superman's Evil Laugh is the one terrifying thing that tells anyone that they will die in the most horrifying way possible.
- The realization by the members of the United Nations that after being 'killed' by the Elite, it's not Superman anymore. He was more than just a Flying Brick: he was a set of ideals for humanity to aspire to. Stripped of those ideals, he's a morally-unrestrained demigod that terrifies some of the most influential people on Earth with nothing more than a few sentences.
- And during his confrontation with Black, he doesn't bother with limiting collateral damage. He hits the ground like a meteor, and then effortlessly dodges most of Black's attacks to the point that his super speed turns into Flash Stepping. And then he lobotomizes Black. Even after taking the biggest hit Black could throw at him, it took almost nothing to focus his heat vision into a scalpel into a meta-gene boosted human and cut out what made him so special.
- The realization that Superman created a whirlwind on the moon. It's not sci-fi artistic license: he's moving that fast.
- The Atomic Skull's murder of innocent people. They're scared, they're glowing, and then crumble to dust.