The Most Useless Superpowers

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 The Most Useless Superpowers

In 1993, DC launched an event called Bloodlines that was designed to bring a whole roster of edgy new characters into their universe by having a bunch of alien bugs show up and experiment with random humans. The story was spread across 23 issues of different titles, each of which introduced an extreme new hero or villain. As you might expect, it produced exactly one character that you could consider a success: Hitman, a mildly superpowered killer who starred in a 60-issue series by Garth Ennis and John McCrea that’s still regarded as one of the decade’s best superhero comics.

The extremely distant second-place honor goes to Gunfire, who managed to survive for 14 issues with the most ’90s superpower ever: he can turn anything he touches into a gun. On the surface, that’s not actually a bad idea by itself. It’s explained in the story as agitating molecules, which is essentially what Gambit does to turn everything he touches into a bomb. The problem is that we already have Gambit, and while comics fans accepted one character with gnarly kinetic-energy-explosion powers, two was a bit much. Also, for some reason, Gunfire carries a regular gun, which is kind of like the Flash riding around on a moped.

It’s surprising that Gunfire has never found his way back to the DC Universe, but Ennis and McCrea put a pretty solid nail into his coffin in the pages of Hitman #1,000,000, an issue set in the distant future where an aspiring hero gave himself Gunfire’s powers and ended up killing himself right after uttering the immortal words “Oh God, I turned my a** into a hand grenade!”

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