troperville

tools

toys


main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
Sealed Evil In A Can: Comic Books

  • In The Astounding Wolf Man Gorgg is an ancient and evil golem that was imprisoned under Stonehenge. As soon as he is released by The Face he goes to kill the blood relatives of those who imprisoned him.
  • Lampshaded in the short-lived comic BMG, where the Big Bad releases The Dragon from a can labeled "Instant evil. Just add water."
  • The Lord of Locusts from Bone.
  • In The DCU, the Phantom Zone is essentially an other-dimensional prison that holds numerous Kryptonian criminals. As such, there many stories where the prisoners escape and the heroes have to fight to throw them back into the Zone.
  • The Source Wall in The DCU is a huge cosmic barrier between the Source (the source of power behind existence itself) and the rest of creation. The Wall is decorated with the bodies and visages of all of the would be conquerors who have sought to claim the power of the Source for themselves, imprisoning them for all eternity. The Wall is one of the more effective Cans in fiction and only three people have ever escaped it. One of them, Yuga Khan (the father of Darkseid), managed to summon just enough power to free himself from the Wall...only to get himself imprisoned in it again in another bid to obtain the Source, this time for good. The second one was Darkseid himself, and he needed the help of the one who imprisoned him in the first place (Superman) to do it. The third was Superman, who was trapped by Darkseid and required the help of every variation of Supergirl from the last twenty years to break free.
  • In a Disney Afternoon crossover event in Disney Adventures, the Chaos God himself, Solego, was trapped in two pieces: a crystal held his mind and a gold medallion held his powers. Uniting the pieces released him and that isn't a good thing.
  • Zom, from Doctor Strange - a surprisingly obscure hyperdemon who was sealed in a special amphora in another dimension. Horrifically powerful. He was initially imprisoned by a coalition of cosmic beings, including Eternity and frickin' Dormammu, and when he was let out, he frightened Umar (Dormammu's even scarier sister) so much she ran home and said she'd never come out again. Considering how bad-ass he is, the "can", or amphora, must truly be the can of the gods.
  • Earth 2:
    • Green Lantern defeats Grundy by putting him in a place where there is no life for him to corrupt. Namely, the Moon.
    • The Red Lantern. If she escapes from the Earth's core, the world is doomed.
  • Caged Demonwolf (Molestor of Worlds!) from Empowered is an Eldritch Abomination that Emp trapped into an alien-made power-draining bondage gear. It Makes Sense in Context.
  • Fables' second Big Bad came out of his can due to the effects of the heroes saving the world.
    • Also, the djinn that Frau Totenkinder dealt with earlier, although that was more of a case of amoral and incredibly dangerous and destructive, especially in the hands of an evil man, but not evil in and of itself.
  • In Marvel comics, Galactus acts as a can on a greater, multiverse-destroying evil. Most of the energy he gets from his food goes to maintaining the seal, explaining his unusual diet.
  • In the Godzilla (2014) tie-in comic Godzilla Awakening, originally, Shinomura and Godzilla (and for that matter every radiovore) fled deep beneath the earth as the radiation levels receded. It was only after the bombing of Hiroshima that lured Shinomura from its hiding place.
  • Green Lantern: Rebirth revealed that the long-established "yellow impurity" in the Central Power Battery was actually Parallax, the "yellow fear entity," an insectile manifestation of that emotion, released when Hal "Greatest GL of them All" Jordan entered the Central Battery years before. Before it was in a box that was stolen from Maltus by Larfleeze and his crew. Later it was imprisoned in a Sciencell, and finally got ripped apart and stashed in four separate batteries.
  • One of the main foes of Hellboy is the Ogdru Jahad, an Eldritch Abomination on par with Cthulhu and the boys.
  • In Hsu and Chan, the Tanaka brothers fight off a demon invasion by sealing them in various trinkets and keepsakes.
  • The Warlock Graveyard in I Hunt Monsters is this, housing many powerful monsters in it and kept in check by an obelisk that needs to be recharged every century of so. It the protagonist's disbelief and reluctance that ends up freeing the monsters and he forced to track them down and re-seal them.
  • In Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, Johnny's constant murders are (partially) motivated by the need for fresh blood to paint on one of the walls in his house, which keeps the monster trapped behind it from physically getting out. After Johnny's accidental suicide, the creature breaks free and is revealed to be a horrible, bloodthirsty mass of tentacles and faces; Johnny's conversation with Señor Diablo implies that it was made up of all the evil emanated by humanity, and its escape was serious enough to require the universe to be rebooted.
  • Justice League of America comics occasionally feature early JLA enemies the Demons Three (Abnegazar, Ghast, and Rath), evil beings who ruled the Earth a billion years ago until being imprisoned in crypts by mysterious powerful entities called the Timeless Ones. The three Demons were eventually summoned/released in the present by Felix Faust, with occasional other escapes from imprisonment since then.
  • Ragamuffin, from Lenore the Cute Little Dead Girl, the eternal vampire scourge who eats people alive, is trapped in a rag doll for the most part of the comics.
  • The french comic book Les Légendaires introduces the Evil God Anathos, whose essence was trapped a long time ago by the other gods in a living prison called the Bearer. While his origin is a typical use of the trope, the way he comes back is partially subverted, as he frees himself by taking control of the Bearer and using Demonic Possession, as well as manipulating one of the protagonists rather than another villain; the original Big Bad, Darkhell, actually attempted to prevent his return rather than helping him.
  • Loki's first appearance shows him imprisoned inside a tree. He would become free only if his captivity causes someone to shed a tear. No one missed Loki strongly enough to want to cry, so he forces Heimdall to shed a tear by poking him in the eye with a leaf.
    • Another example of this in The Mighty Thor franchise is Mangog, the sum total of the hatred of a race that was slain by Odin. It was imprisoned with a warning on the door until released by the Rock Troll Ulik who thought it would be an ally against Asgard.
    • Then there were older foes of Asgard imprisoned by Odin. Ymir the Frost Giant, Surter the Fire Demon, and Skagg the Storm Giant, the last two were released by Loki to attack Odin.
    • And more recently, there's The Serpent, God of Fear and Odin's brother, who Odin sealed in a prison at the bottom of the ocean ages ago, until freed by Sin (who had been transformed into one of his Worthy).
  • Parodied in a 1983 nine-page story in Love And Rockets by Jamie Hernandez called Maggie vs Maniakk. Maggie plays with a "Mayamese mini transporter" and accidentally frees Maniakk, a costumed super evil trapped in limbo/the ninth dimension by Ultimax, a superhero now down on his luck.
  • In Lucifer, the seraph Meleos long ago created the Basanos, a living, extremely powerful living tarot deck as both a complement to Destiny's book (which contains nearly everything that will ever happen) and a means of recording and preserving humanity's thoughts. The latter function, however, corrupted the Basanos and turned them into beings of pure evil, so Meleos has since locked them in a box. However, when Lucifer demands the use of the Basanos for divination, Meleos resolves to destroy them and opens the box, whereupon the cards overpower him and escape.
  • Tiamut the Dreaming Celestial was exiled to Earth by his Celestial brethren for committing a crime against "life itself". Later revealed to be a case of Sealed Good in a Can. Tiamut objected when the others tried to cull the Deviants of Earth, and was punished for it. The Deviants understandably worship Tiamut as their savior.
  • In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic (IDW) Chrysalis and her Changelings are imprisoned in their own castle at the end of the first Story Arc. With the animated Pinkie Pie suit to entertain them (well, entertain the soldiers, annoy Chrysalis).
  • The Sohrem of Nightschool.
  • One episode of The Sandman had an Arabian Nights-flavored tale with a medieval caliph (kind of like a Muslim king/pope) who wanted to talk to Dream. The caliph went into a dark secret room and took out an ancient globe full of demons, threatening to break it and release them all. Morpheus appeared, took the globe and pocketed it, and then inquired what the caliph wanted.
  • Superman. Doomsday was living Sealed Evil, but ultimately broke out of his own can. He keeps getting re-sealed in stronger cans (we hope!).
  • In the conclusion of The Thanos Imperative event, the now immortal Thanos is trapped in the Cancer Verse. Star-Lord and Nova trapped him there along with themselves to keep him from destroying their own universe in his rage at being forever denied the embrace of his beloved Death. Subverted when it turns out he escaped later on.
  • Jurid from Thieves & Kings, also known as "the Dawn Swallower", is a powerful monster, but spent a thousand years or so stuck in a glass bottle, trapped by a young girl.
Anime & MangaSealed Evil in a CanLiterature

random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
19929
42