Posted by Paracelsus (1310 posts) - - Show Bio

Looking at individuals as different as John Steele(Marvel) and New Wave(DC), I felt compelled to pop the question- how do you imprison/execute individuals who cannot die or are impervious to age or death by conventional means and whose execution or lifelong imprisonment would raise a host of (US at least) constitutional matters( OK New Wave can be incarcerated in a test tube/giant bottle- but as she can transmute her body into water-which of all the elements is arguably the most indestructible; it can be turned into ice or steam-but sooner or later returns to its natural liquid state, this means that she is functionally immortal. How long would be before she literally started to exhibit signs of prison psychosis- "stir crazy". And the mechanics of executing such a woman-far less the cost of conventional imprisonment alone- would drive most state or Federal authorities crazy?)

Much of the previous observations about New Wave apply to John Steele( who, his seeming death notwithstanding, has been around for nearly two centuries ; he was made immortal/indestructible in 1865, and presumably fought in not just the US Civil War but the Spanish-American and both World Wars). True, he could be placed in an adamantium based cell( but the cost alone would be prohibitive).

Any thoughts on this matter?


#1 Posted by TheSecondOpinion (614 posts) - - Show Bio

Well, Juggernaut was imprisoned before, but that was because of free will. He doesn't age nor does he die, but sometimes he just gets bored of smashing things and goes to jail. They don't execute him when he gets out of hand. They can just send him inter another dimension. But he always comes back.

Wolverine...He seems immortal, but he can still die. Gas, Water among other things.

Iceman is basically just like New Wave can still die.... For example someone like Magneto can just rip out an electron or two (or add some) from the moisture molecules and game over for them. Electromagnetism is one of the fundamental forces that make up the fabrics of matter & energy have it being a solid, liquid, vapor or gas.

Psionic beings can be contained. Spiritual beings can be exorcised. Ethereal beings banished to another dimension. Energy beings can be contained and recycled. It just all depends on the circumstances and cost is of very little importance in comic fiction.

Oh, and when it is something that is inside the multiverse whether it being physical or conceptual.... It can die... Or be deleted and forgotten. That's why there are characters like Death and Oblivion.

#2 Posted by Rumble Man (11073 posts) - - Show Bio

@Paracelsus: Molecular stasis or digitizing them and storing them in cyberspace

#3 Posted by batkevin74 (11276 posts) - - Show Bio

Simple answer @Paracelsus: A big hole coated in grease. That'll keep John Steele out of the way for a few years. Sure he could eventually tunnel himself out, but we're taking dropping him down a mineshaft several kilometers below the surface. He has no compass and plus with all the grease, it's just going to make him mad so if he goes NUTS he'll bury himself alive, trapped until someone else digs him out.

Other ways for both of them; gas filled tubes. Pump them full of gas (carbon dioxide for example or other more exotic sleeping agents) and leave them to sleep for years. Unless the gas goes off, they're out!

I do like this idea by @Rumble Man said:

@Paracelsus: Molecular stasis or digitizing them and storing them in cyberspace

Similar to Reed's exile in the Negative Zone idea or the US government sending the bad guys way off planet like DC did.

#4 Posted by Rumble Man (11073 posts) - - Show Bio

@batkevin74: Introduce an adapting parasite that will eat them in the long term

#5 Edited by Paracelsus (1310 posts) - - Show Bio

yes, but even putting aside cost- there is also the US constitutional prohibition on "cruel and unusual punishment". How do you execute someone like New Wave or John Steele without making him/her suffer unduly( drugging her into virtual catatonia might work-she cannot use her water based powers to escape if she's dosed up) but the idea of executing a woman who is a virtual zombie sounds quetionable to me at the every least!


#6 Posted by TheSpiritStalker (2095 posts) - - Show Bio

suspended animation or cryogenics?

#7 Posted by ImmortalOne (3546 posts) - - Show Bio

Well, assuming this is just immortality, just toss them into a volcano.

#8 Edited by TheSecondOpinion (614 posts) - - Show Bio


Yea, there are immortal beings and eternal beings.


  • Immortal Being = Thor
  • Eternal Being = Vishanti
#9 Posted by Dragonborn_CT (24307 posts) - - Show Bio

Simple, we just hack them to pieces, burn the remains and consume the ashes.

#10 Posted by Highlander_615 (212 posts) - - Show Bio

@Dragonborn_CT said:

Simple, we just hack them to pieces, burn the remains and consume the ashes.


#11 Posted by AllStarSuperman (23221 posts) - - Show Bio

Putting them in a upsidedown indestructible fish bowl and making them listen to one direction and nickleback songs. And watching Nicholas cage movies!

#12 Posted by JediXMan (31586 posts) - - Show Bio

Do what they did to Jack Harkness: put him in a block of concrete.

#13 Posted by mrdecepticonleader (18875 posts) - - Show Bio

@JediXMan said:

Do what they did to Jack Harkness: put him in a block of concrete.

Yeah that could work.

By doing that or freezing them.

#14 Posted by Pyrogram (41560 posts) - - Show Bio

Captain Jack harkness is truly immortal.

#15 Posted by lagoon_boy (10880 posts) - - Show Bio

Via B.F.R into another dimension.

#16 Posted by Rumble Man (11073 posts) - - Show Bio

@Highlander_615 said:

@Dragonborn_CT said:

Simple, we just hack them to pieces, burn the remains and consume snort the ashes.



#17 Posted by The Stegman (26567 posts) - - Show Bio

Well, in DC Universe Presents, we had a Vandal Savage story, the had been imprisoned for years, although at that point, no one believed him to be immortal.  
As for killing them, it depends, immortal does not equal invulnerable, if fire can burn them, then just light them on fire, it will destroy faster than they can heal. 

#18 Posted by Paracelsus (1310 posts) - - Show Bio

Factor in that some metahumans(pace supernaturally based ones such as Dracula or Mephisto) are effectively beyond conventional prosecution because(a) nobody knows where to find them(b) or even believes that they exist. New Wave i suppose could be immobliized by being frozen into a block of ice but carw would have to be taken that her cell contained not the slightest crack-otherwise if the refrigeration units failed or the test tube was cracked, she could easily ooze to freedom in her watery state. Also given the fact that she is arguably immortal(at least when in liquid from), could a "life sentence" really last for centuries- see constitutional prohibition on "cruel and unusual" punishment. Also you have to be alive in order to serve a life sentence- is a woman frozen into a block of ice arguably "alive"?


#19 Posted by satyrgod (2115 posts) - - Show Bio

If they return from the dead, destroying or incarcerating them becomes an inconvenience and they will return worse; enraged or insane.  Better to reason with them, reform them to an extent.  I really like Marvel's Selene.  She is immortal and has returned from molecular dispersion.  She cannot be permanently destroyed, but might be convinced that random destruction in counter-productive to her own agenda.  If she were to habitually kill victims in Central Park or pawns of the Hellfire Club, the authorities would hunt her, the X-Men or Avengers would come knocking...  But, if she were advised to survive off lesser quantities of more people's lives and kept killing to a minimum, basically for fun, she would arouse less suspicion.  Hulk is another matter.  He can't be reasoned with, imprisoned, destroyed, or "cured"; exile is the only viable option.

#20 Posted by sesquipedalophobe (4779 posts) - - Show Bio

Frozen in carbonite.