The 10 Darkest Universes in Marvel Comics, according to Reddit

The multiverse saga likely introduces countless alternate timelines from Marvel comics into the MCU. Some fare better than others. For any universe where scarcity seems in the past as in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, others prove less inviting. Fans on Reddit love to discuss comics, and the darker Marvel Comics universe offers plenty to discuss.


Darker Marvel universes tend to explore alternate paths in history that take positive events and turn them upside down. Others offer a universe where nothing exists in human conception, such as the Cancerverse. These terrifying universes likely come to the screen somehow as the MCU mines all the passages in the next two stages.

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10/10 Earth-1218

Redditor periphery72271 suggests that Earth-1218 counts as the grimmest Marvel universe as it “has no superheroes, no superscience, no cosmic entities, nothing.” This lackluster quality comes from the fact that Earth-1218 is actually “the real world” as it exists in the larger Marvel multiverse.

Marvel’s mightiest superheroes exist on Earth-1218 but only as they do in the real world, as comic book characters. This world officially entered the Marvel multiverse thanks to the breaking of the fourth wall by She-Hulk and others.

9/10 The Cancerverse

Cancerverse Doctor Strange uses his powers in Marvel comics.

Reddit user Mddcat04 names the Cancerverse, where death died. This “led to the Cancerverse becoming such a nightmare, dominated by immortal deities”. Rather than a utopia where everyone lived forever, the Multianglers feasted on the eternal life of the universe to create a truly horrific universe.

The Many-Angled Ones essentially function as the scariest monsters from HP Lovecraft’s mythology. They also rank among the most powerful cosmic beings in the Marvel Universe.

8/10 ruins

Phil Sheldon in Marvel Comics Ruins with the Hulk by his side.

Redditor Selacha says ‘ruins it’s basically a worst-case scenario for any Marvel superhero or event.’ This alternate universe takes place in a 1995 limited series where instead of power and possibility, iconic incidents in Marvel history that produced heroes and villains resulted in horrific deformities.

This turns into an unmitigated disaster when characters like Captain America die, leaving the world defenseless against greater threats. This universe features perhaps the creepiest Hulk variant in Marvel Comics.

7/10 Earth-90227

Wolverine sits in front of a ghost box in Marvel comics.

Redditor ElimGarak thinks Earth-90227 is the bleakest universe since it is “one of the universes that has been invaded through the use of ghost boxes.” In Astonishing X-Men: Ghost Boxes, X-Men from another universe invade others thanks to Ghost Boxes. These powerful devices disrupt time so much that they destabilize the timelines.

This led to the X-Men from Earth-90227, as reality became too much to bear within the decaying universe. Most of the X-Men of this universe eventually died before they could find peace.

6/10 Spider-Man has never lost the symbiote

Spider-Man in his black suit from the cover of Web of Spider-Man #1.

Reddit fan sonofaresiii believes a universe has been visited Exiled the comics rank as the worst because Peter Parker never lost the alien symbiote there and became “a”. absolutely ruthless killer.’ Comic book fans know this Secret Wars (1985) introduced Peter Parker to the alien symbiote, which he donned before abandoning it a few years later.

In this nightmarish universe, he never escaped the bondage of the symbiotes. Parker joined it, turning into a callous, mindless killer more akin to Spider-Man’s mighty villains Carnage or Venom.

5/10 Last Universe

Mary Jane holds Spider-Man's body in Ultimate Comics.

Redditor TheDarkElCamino lobbies for Earth-1610, the Ultimate Comics universe, saying it “was a pretty unforgiving universe.” This has certainly manifested itself in Ultimatum, a major Marvel Comics event storyline and gory. Many characters died in this story, often in nightmarish fashion, such as when the Blob ate The Wasp.

Marvel’s most iconic characters like Wolverine, Cyclops, and Spider-Man eventually died in this universe, often in brutal ways. However, it did provide some optimism when new Spider-Man, Miles Morales, took over the role.

4/10 The era of the apocalypse

Sabretooth and Wolverine rush into battle in the Age of Apocalypse comic book storyline.

Reddit user Blackpanther22five thinks dystopian The era of the apocalypse the timeline becomes “pretty bad, most of the heroes are dead”. The era of the apocalypseamong the best X-Men comic book storylines ever, it featured Apocalypse killing most of the people in the world in his relentless attempt to seek the survival of the fittest.

This cruel timeline has resulted in entire countries being wiped off the map. Countless characters died, including Apocalypse himself, finally falling to Magneto in a bloody final battle for the ages. The universe itself eventually ceases to exist, shattering as the storyline closed and forcing some characters to flee to Earth-616.

3/10 Marvel zombies

Marvel zombie attack in Marvel comics.

Redditor Clilly1 thinks the Marvel zombies the universe becomes so bleak because “the heroes aren’t stereotypical mindless zombies, they’ve retained memories and personality traits from when they lived.” In this shocking reality, a virus invades the world, turning heroes and villains into carnivorous monsters.

This universe features truly dark moments, including Spider-Man eating both his wife and aunt, as well as numerous zombie characters consuming Galactus and gaining the Power Cosmic. They then proceed to proliferate across the universe, consuming other worlds with their newfound power.

2/10 Old Logan

Old Man Logan as he appeared in his comic series.

Reddit user Bass_Sucks thinks the Old man logon universe wins as the main heroes “die horribly and genocidal maniacs control chunks of the country”. Though this reality’s grizzled Logan hangs with the more powerful versions of Wolverine, he lives in a world where he killed the X-Men through a cruel ruse.

The bad guys have carved up the world in their own personal fiefdoms. The darkest elements of this universe concern the Hulk. He rules with impunity, spawning a devolved band of Hulks that he spawned with She-Hulk. The gang kills Logan’s family, setting him on a quest for revenge across a barren landscape.

1/10 Earth-616

Mephisto appears in the One More Day comics.

Reddit fan SuperMario1981 says that Earth-616, the main Marvel universe, is considered the grimmest as “Spider-Man sold his beloved wife to the devil to escape the consequences of his rash and reckless actions.” This refers to Another daythe controversial storyline in which Mephisto canceled Peter and Mary Jane’s wedding.

Mephisto permanently altered reality to cancel the wedding and angered vocal fans who still believe the move was a mistake. Nearly fifteen years later, the wedding remains among the few Marvel Comics retcons that haven’t been retconned.

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NEXT: Top 10 Most Powerful X-Men Villains In Marvel Comics

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