Women in Refrigerators

    Concept » Women in Refrigerators appears in 23 issues.

    A term that was created by Gail Simone. Women in Refrigerators (WiR) refers to comic book women who have been depowered, raped, murdered and/or had their lives ruined specifically in order to fuel the stories of men.

    Short summary describing this concept.

    Women in Refrigerators last edited by x_woman on 10/26/19 09:13PM View full history


    One day it occurred to comic book writer Gail Simone that women in comics are so commonly misused to define a story after one of her favorite female characters was killed off. She decided to call this term 'Women in Refrigerators' after a panel in the Green Lantern #54 (1994) comic book. The scene in question featured Kyle Rayner returning home to his apartment. There he found a note informing him to look inside the fridge, where he found the mangled remains of his girlfriend, Alex DeWitt. Gail says that she realizes that some that are on the list have already been resurrected, but the reason why they were included on the list still remains true.

    The Original List

    This list was originally compiled and written by Gail Simone in alphabetical order:

    • All of Savage Dragon's girlfriends: Dead.
    • Allen, Dawn: Dead.
    • Amethyst: Blinded. Merged with Gemworld. Destroyed in Legion of Super Heroes; became a power-hungry witch in Book of Fate.
    • Apparition: One of her three bodies dead. Soul bound to boyfriend. Gave birth. Lost child. Nearly beaten to death by close friend.
    • Aquagirl: Dead, reanimated and turned into Black Lantern, kills Garth.
    • Arisia: Depowered and then murdered. Resurrected, mourning lost love. Forced to relive being buried alive.
    • Aurora: Attempts to commit suicide. Multiple Personality Disorder. Depowered. Repowered and viciously mentally tampered with.
    • Banner, Betty: Abused. Changed into a harpy. Multiple miscarriages. Dead. Resurrected. Currently Red She-Hulk.
    • Banner, Mrs Rebecca ( Bruce's mother): Murdered by her abusive husband.
    • Batgirl I: Paralyzed. This is no longer the case in her new 52 series, tortured, repeatedly nearly murdered by brother, possibly losing ability to walk.
    • Batwoman I: Dead. Brought back. Murdered again.
    • Batwoman II: Repeatedly stabbed and nearly used as sacrifice. Brainwashed. Girlfriend repeatedly nearly murdered. Kills sister. Kidnapped and placed in coffin.
    • Black Canary I: Suffered from radiation poisoning. Dead.
    • Black Canary II: Tortured. Made infertile. Depowered. Tortured. Brainwashed. Husband killed by her hand.
    • Blink: Died using powers to defeat Phalanx. Dead.
    • Bluebird: Died in car accident.
    • Buf (from X-Man) : Crippled.
    • Captain Marvel / Photon: Depowered. Ceded code name to a male hero. Repowered.
    • Celsius: Blamed for her mothers death. Insane. Dead. Called delusional liar. Brought back as a Black Lantern.
    • Chandler, Marlo ( Rick Jones' wife): Former prostitute. Killed and brought back mindless.
    • Crimson Fox: Both sisters murdered.
    • Dart: Crippled.
    • Dawnstar: Wings cut off. Possessed by another persona. Retconned repeatedly to change her character.
    • DeWitt, Alex: Killed for dating Green Lantern and stuffed into a refrigerator.
    • Diamond Lil: Kidnapped. Experimented on by her own government. Developed benign breast tumor.
    • Domino: Raised by a cult leader. Kidnapped & tortured for a year. Tortured again and impersonated, mistrusted. Forced to kill close friend. Had powers blocked and went through serious emotional trauma. Nearly murdered.
    • Dove II: Dead.
    • Dr. Midnight of Infinity, Inc: Blinded. Murdered by Eclipso.
    • Elasti-Girl: Only original Doom Patroller to stay dead.
    • Electrocute: Dead.
    • Elektra: Held hostage. Brainwashed. Raped by her father. Mother murdered. Dead. Replaced by Skrull. Ressurected by The Hand. Nearly lombotomized, kept against her will in a mental institution. Tortured by the Skrull.
    • Element Girl: Hideously deformed by powers. Unable to die, visited by Death and then dies by looking into the sun.
    • Enchantress of Suicide Squad: Originally a heroine. Turned evil. Insane. Depowered.
    • Firebelle: Dead.
    • Firestar: Emotionally manipulated. Powers were sterilizing her and making her infertile. Contracted breast cancer. Overcame it.
    • Fury II: Child kidnapped. Husband killed twice. Insane.
    • Gand, Laurel: Killed in bomb blast.
    • Grey, Jean / Phoenix: Died. Resurrected/replaced. Destroyed planets. Self-sacrifice. Resurrected. Ignored by lover. Absorbed clone's memories. Died & resurrected various times. Abused repeatedly, manipulated.
    • Hawkwoman: Depowered. Murdered. Brought back from the dead, insane. Left to die.
    • Hellcat: Dead. Resurrected. Repeatedly nearly murdered by ex husband. Driven insane by second husband. Mind controlled by the grim reaper. Traumatized.
    • Helvin, Christine of ' Troublemakers': Victim of date rape. Discovered she could never have children because she was no longer human.
    • Huntress I: Dead.
    • Huntress II: Sexually abused, tortured, murdered and replaced with Helena Wayne.
    • Ice: Dead. Resurrected to avenge her own death. Dates Guy Gardner. Murdered by bomber.
    • Invisible Woman: Miscarriage of second child. Mind controlled and transformed into a murderer.
    • Jade: Lost natural powers. Dead. Resurrected and then removed from universe.
    • Jarella: Crushed to death.
    • Jean DeWolff: Dead.
    • Jet of New Guardians: Died in battle after contracting HIV.
    • Jocasta: Deactivated repeatedly.
    • Kane, Frances / Magenta: Stalker complex.
    • Katma Tui: Dead.
    • Kent, Laurel: Shot. Replaced by an evil robot. Dead.
    • Kinetix: Depowered twice. Catatonic. Dead.
    • Kole : Dead.
    • Lady Flash: Evil. Raped by Vandal Savage. Dead.
    • Lady Quark: Dead.
    • Looker: Turned into vampire, nearly killed three times, divorced.
    • MacTaggert, Moira: Couldn't save her reality warping son or husband. Possessed by Shadow King. Only human to contract the Legacy Virus. Shot protecting adopted daughter. Dead.
    • Mantis: Child taken away. Dead.
    • Marrina: Insane, dead.
    • Mentalla of Legion of Super Heroes: Dead.
    • Mera: Insane. Child murdered. Used as trojan horse to get to Atlantis. Kidnapped.
    • Mirage of Team Titans: Impregnated by rape. Removed from history.
    • Mockingbird: Abducted and mind-manipulated into a relationship. Believed Dead. Imprisoned on Skrull homeworld for years.
    • Ms Marvel / Warbird: Mind-controlled and impregnated by rape, then 'gave birth' to her rapist/mind-controller. Powers and memories stolen by Rogue. Gained cosmic powers via abduction and torture. Depowered again. Became an alcoholic. Killed and replaced by a former villainess. Resurrected.
    • Mystek of Justice League Task Force: Dead.
    • Namorita: Clone of her mother. Exiled from Atlantis. Reverted to a primal Atlantean form. Turned pink again. Turned blue again. Dead.
    • Negative Woman: Depowered.
    • Nightshade: Depowered.
    • Nightwind: Dead.
    • Nova / Raye, Frankie: Dead.
    • Page, Karen: Drug addiction. Low budget porn star. HIV positive. Dead.
    • Palmer, Jean Loring: Nervous breakdown, goes on a killing spree. Dead.
    • Park, Linda: Kidnapped. Removed from history.
    • Power Girl: Depowered. Magically impregnated. Made vulnerable to unprocessed natural materials (i.e. sticks).
    • Pryor, Madelyn: Cloned from Jean Grey. Abandoned by husband. Brood mare. Demon queen. Dead. Resurrected. Dead. Dead body possessed.
    • Psylocke: Blinded. Eyes replaced by cameras. Body-swapped. Eviscerated. Depowered. New shadow powers. Swapped powers with Jean Grey. Dead. Resurrected. Powers altered yet again.
    • Rasputin, Illyana: Kidnapped & raised by demons. De-aged. Dead. Resurrected without her soul.
    • Raven: Sometimes evil. Sometimes dead, repeated loss of autonomy.
    • Red Guardian II: Kidnapped and brainwashed into the love-slave of a super-villain.
    • Redwing of Team Titans: Dead.
    • Revanche: Body swapped & believed she was Betsy Braddock. Contracted Legacy Virus. Committed suicide. Dead. Body resurrected & possessed. Still dead.
    • Rogue: Absorbed life of first boyfriend. Can't touch anyone else. Depowered & raped. On-Off again relationship with Gambit. Generally messed up. Currently stable.
    • Ross, Courtney: Dead.
    • Roulette: Dead.
    • Scarlet Witch: Married a machine. Phantom pregnancy. Children 'died' when born because they were figments of her imagination. Various mental breakdowns. Cause of both House of M and "no more mutants."
    • Serpentina: Dead.
    • Shrinking Violet: Abducted and impersonated. Lost a leg.
    • Shvaughn, Erin: Turned into a man.
    • Silver Sorceress: Dead.
    • Snowbird: Child & husband murdered. Insane. Dead.
    • Southern Candy: Kidnapped. Ignored in favor of Jean Grey. Kidnapped again. Tortured. Brain dead. Murdered. Resurrected as a Phalanx. Dead.
    • Spider-Woman: Dead. Resurrected. Depowered. Replaced by Skrull Queen. Re-established.
    • Stacy, Gwen: Dead. Cloned.
    • Star Sapphire: Turned into a villain by the Zamarons. Possessed by the Predator.
    • Starfire: Raped. Tortured. Enslaved. Forced into marriage twice. Dumped at the altar.
    • Storm: Depowered. Repowered. Various bouts of insanity.
    • Stuart, Alysande: Dead.
    • Summers, Rachel / Phoenix: Lobotomized. Forced to hunt down her own kind. Lost in the time-stream. Lost in space.
    • Supergirl, pre- Crisis: Dead. Erased from history.
    • Supergirl: Lost her invisibility & most of her shapeshifting. Erased from history. Turned into half an angel. Brainwashed repeatedly by Lex Luthor. Retconned out during Infinite Crisis. Returns. Goes mad and then returns to obscurity. Retconned out once more.
    • Projectra: Dead.
    • Tarot: Dead. Resurrected & bound to an evil man.
    • Threnody: Forced to work for Mr Sinister. Contracted Legacy Virus. Dead.
    • Tigra: Devolved into cat-thing. Kept as a pet by Molecule Man, Graviton, Kraven and Puppet Master. Shrunken in size and lived with stray cats on the streets. Filmed while brutally beaten in her home; footage posted on internet. Impregnated by Skrull who posed as Pym.
    • Triplicate Girl: One body killed. One presumed dead but revealed to be Glorith's pawn.
    • Ventura, Sharon: Became a monster in Fantastic Four. De-monstered but enslaved by Doctor Doom. Depowered.
    • Wildcat II: Dead.
    • Wolfsbane: Raised to fear God and to believe she was a devil. Traumatized over death of boyfriend. Stripped, depowered & locked in werewolf form for a while. Lost powers. Repowered. Fired as a teacher after an affair with a student. Kidnapped & brainwashed. Ate her biological father. Pregnant with an Asgardian's child who she birthed by couching him out of her throat, and seconds later witnessed how it killed a man.
    • Wonder Girl / Troia / Darkstar: Identity and powers stripped from her multiple times. Retroactively removed from history. No longer part of the Teen Titans.
    • Wonder Woman: Killed. Revived, but lost her Goddess powers.
    • Zatanna: Powers severely limited following distressing battle against the reanimated corpse of her father. Huge loss of confidence. Currently back to full power.

    Source location: WiR

    Updated List

    Characters who are worthy of being added to the list, but were not originally included by Gail Simone.

    • Alice: Delusional, repeatedly tries to kill own sister and father, falls to her death after letting go of sisters hand.
    • Alura: Watches husband die, goes insane. Blown up when New Krypton explodes.
    • Ant: Picked on and beaten as a child. Forced to eat dog feces. Memories altered. Put into Asylum. Hand cut off, reattached later.
    • Artemis: Killed. Forced to marry a monstrous demon in the afterlife. Resurrected. Depowered, kidnapped and enslaved. Repowered. Removed from history.
    • Betty Brant: Attacked and beaten silly by a random thug in ASM#665 for the sole purpose of getting Peter on the warpath and bringing Flash Thompson her boyfriend into the next story arc.
    • Big Barda: Murdered in her own home by God Killer. Husband Mr Miracle found her body sprawled on kitchen floor. Might have been brought back to life.
    • Black Alice: Mother a drug addict and commits suicide. Framed by best friend. Cheated on. Father ill because she accidentally gave him cancer.
    • Black Cat: Beaten up. Powers messed up. Date raped.
    • Cain, Cassandra: Ignored by villainous parents. Bred to be weapon. Mute. Drugged & brainwashed to be a criminal.
    • Carr, Olivia: Abducted and brainwashed. Kills one of her captors and a corrupt police officer. Taken to Arkham for evaluation.
    • Catwoman: Retconned into a prostitute. Discovered that her "boyfriend" was a serial killer. Became good, but discovered that the change was because Zatanna altered her mind. Impregnated. Daughter was kidnapped several times. Decided to give daughter up for adoption. Her heart was stolen, but soon returned. She survived the process. Repeatedly abused and beaten and attacked. Heart stolen again, repeatedly nearly murdered by her sister.
    • Chambers, Jesse: Cheated with mothers fiance. Lost father and retired. Attacked, nearly killed repeatedly. Loses her powers because of her pregnancy. Removed from history.
    • Cheetah, of DC: Kidnapped to be bride to demon. Sold her soul to get her friend back. Devolved into mindless beast. Power once stolen by a male.
    • Circe: Turned into human, traumatic birth of child, child kidnapped by father. Child removed from continuity.
    • Diamondback: Beaten and raped by Crossbones as a teenager. Later kidnapped and beaten by him again. Injected with serum that made her mentally unstable. Impersonated by a Life Model Decoy, who slept with unsuspecting boyfriend Steve Rogers and was then graphically killed.
    • Dibny, Sue: Raped. Dead. Repeatedly kidnapped. Retconned out of existence.
    • Dr Light II: Severely beaten. Lost her powers. Has recently recovered said powers.
    • Harley Quinn: Repeatedly abused by The Joker, mindcontrolled by other people, taken advantage of, nearly murdered by the Joker in a fit of rage. Thrown in a vat of chemicals that bleach her skin.
    • Harper, Lian: Killed to make father go mad.
    • Heatmonger, of Aryan Brigade: Dead.
    • Hippolyta: Originally a murdered pregnant woman. Raped repeatedly, shackled. Fights with sister and never sees her again. Becomes a mother. Donna Troy kidnapped. Accidentally causes daughters death. Dies. Resurrected and kills hundreds of people. Retconned into a bloodthirsty rapist.
    • Hit-Girl: Raised to be an assassin by Big Daddy. Witnessed her father's murder.
    • Illyana Rasputin: Kidnapped as a child & raised in Limbo. Lost her soul. Died. Resurrected without her soul.
    • Inertia, of Squadron Supreme: Abused. Raped.
    • Jubilee: Tortured for information. Crucified. Died. Resurrected. Impaled on various occasions. Depowered.
    • Kapatelis, Vanessa: Kidnapped, brainwashed, tried to kill close friend repeatedly, abused. Traumatized by best friends suicide. Retconned out of existence.
    • Kean-Gordon, Barbara: Repeatedly nearly killed by son. Kidnapped by the Joker. Has ring finger cut off.
    • Klara: Forced into under-age marriage & raped.
    • Knockout: Killed by God Killer.
    • Kyle, Maggie: Kidnapped by Black Mask, forced to eat her husbands eyes, goes insane and kept in psychiatric facility. Escapes and kills a nun and then repeatedly tries to murder her sister. Mindcontrolled and gains power, which nearly kill her and control her, causing her to give into her delusions. Brainwashes Harley Quinn.
    • Lady Blackhawk: Brainwashed, made to kill friends, kidnapped, raped. Retconned out of existence.
    • Lana Lang: Repeatedly attacked, kidnapped, betrays Superman and then is fired for trying to make up for it. Possessed by Insect Queen against her will, loses Kara's friendship as a consequence.
    • Lane-Kent, Lois: Severely injured during Final Crisis, but survived. Retconned to be dead.
    • Lane, Lois: Repeatedly attacked, brainwashed, kidnapped, watched her father die, used as a way to get Superman's attention. Sister tries to kill husband repeatedly. Finds out father is alive. Married, retconned to not be married. Killed in elseword stories to free Superman for romantic interests.
    • Lilith Clay: Traumatised by visions, murdered. Retconned into a villain.
    • Liberty: Repeatedly raped by invading martians.
    • Marrow: One of her hearts ripped out. Mortally injured by Gambit. Lost control of her powers. Brainwashed. Hypnotised into sleeping with Mesmero. Depowered.
    • Maxima: Dead.
    • Mindi Mayer: Depressed, commits suicide by overdosing. Wonder Woman framed for her death.
    • Nocturne: Miscarried. Suffered a stroke. Suffers memory loss. Partial paralysis of one leg & arm.
    • Pantha: Turned into a half animal hybrid. Decapitated. Dead. Risen as Black Lantern.
    • Pixie: Savagely beaten. Self-sacrificed soul. Possibly becoming half-demon. Brutally beaten again. Father revealed to be Mastermind.
    • Manitou Dawn: Loses husband, captured, removed from history.
    • Mary Marvel: Molested. Coma. Ignored. Became evil. Went mad, regained sanity.
    • Parker, Mary Jane: On-again off-again relationship with Spider-Man for many years before they got married. Told her child had died during birth. Kidnappings & divorce. Retconned to erase marriage.
    • Phantom Lady (Sandra Knight): Abducted while pregnant. Left for dead and fetus stolen from womb. Recovered, but never reunited with husband or lost child. Retired from crime-fighting.
    • Phantom Lady (Dee Tyler): Brutally murdered via impalement by Deathstroke, who told her it was 'just business.' Mangled body put on public display.
    • Phantom Lady (Stormy Knight): Became alcoholic and drug addict after father was murdered. Attempted suicide by slitting wrists. Recovered, but retired from crime-fighting for a time. Currently back as Phantom Lady.
    • Rapture: Unborn baby's super strength kicks caused internal injuries which made her go into premature labor.
    • Raya Vestri: A love interest for Nightwing. Murdered by Joker.
    • Reynolds, Lindy: Killed by Bullseye/Hawkeye and thrown into the sea.
    • Shadowcat: Kidnapped. Stuck in 'phased' condition. Unfulfilled relationship with Colossus. Mourned deaths of best friend and Colossus. Trapped in a planet-sized bullet and unable to be saved by teammates.
    • Silhouette, of New Warriors: Shot. Crippled.
    • Silhouette, of Minutemen: Killed for being a lesbian.
    • Silk Spectre I: Repeated rape & severe beating by Comedian.
    • Silver St.Cloud: Retconned into a sex fiend and murdered brutally by Onomatopoeia .
    • Siryn: Raised by Black Tom & Juggernaut who told her that her father had died. Coached to be a criminal by her uncle. Alcoholism. Childhood sweetheart denied having a relationship with her. Had throat slit. Her son was absorbed & therefore killed by his father on day he was born.
    • Spider-Woman III: Abused. Drugged. Used to make Mutant Growth Hormone
    • Spoiler, girlfriend of Tim Drake: Nearly molested as a child. Teenage pregnancy. Kidnapped & tortured by Black Mask. Killed by Leslie Thompkins. Received no memorial. Resurrected. Current Batgirl. Loses the cowl.
    • Supergirl [current]: Repeatedly brainwashed, goes evil, has an abusive boyfriend. Emotionally abused repeatedly. Father murdered in front of her, watches her mother go insane. Too late to save Lana who dies. Then attacked by Lana who was possessed by the Insect Queen. Watches New Krypton explode and her mother die.
    • Takeru: Hand cut off. Catatonic.
    • Tana Moon: On-again-off-again relationship. Caught in explosion set up by Amanda Spence after re-established relationship, murdered.
    • Tara, of Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Killed by random bullet. Death caused lesbian lover Willow to descend into madness and villainy.
    • Tigra: Dead.
    • Wasp: Kidnapped and brain used as template for robot duplicate ( Jocasta). Beaten by husband Hank Pym, causing divorce. Dead. To date, the only founding member of the Avengers to remain deceased.
    • Windfall: Drugged. Raped. Pictures of rape posted on internet. Dead.
    • X-23: Raised to murder her biological father. Violently beaten for each mistake. Was made to kill her own mother. Underage prostitution.

    In 2017, Saga Press published The Refrigerator Monologues, a work of fiction by literary fantacist Catherynne M. Valente. It consists of six interconnected stories where women from the superhero universe tell their tales of being "refrigerated" so that a male superhero's story line can progress.


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