Spawn marks its 350th issue with a new ruler of Hell and big changes to the record-breaking comic's status quo

Art from Spawn #350
(Image credit: Image Comics)

There are few constants in life, but Image president Todd McFarlane's Spawn is surely one of them. The character debuted in May 1992's Spawn #1 and has run for more than 30 years. The comic reaches #350 this week, and it's an issue that marks a major turning point in the series.

Nobody has sat on the Throne of Hell since Spawn #100 (published all the way back in November 2000) when Al Simmons beheaded Malebolgia. Now, all these years later war has come to Hell and three major contenders will duke it out for the chance to become the new ruler of the underworld.

Art from Spawn #350

(Image credit: Image Comics)

Spoilers for Spawn #350 ahead

One of those is, of course, Spawn himself, battling to save creation with the help of his former wife Wanda. Also there is Sinn, the reborn Cogliostro and a recent-ish big bad who is determined to take the Throne. Finally, Spawn mainstay Clown is also making a play for the big chair.

That... doesn't quite work out. Clown and Sinn fight, with Sinn easily defeating Clown and then switching his focus to Spawn. At first it seems like it's all going Sinn's way, but a flashback sequence reveals that Spawn has planned for this occasion...

You see, Spawn doesn't intend to take the Throne. Instead, he's persuaded his friend (and the original She-Spawn) Nyx to become Queen of Hell. Only she, Al believes, will be able to resist being corrupted by the powers of the Throne. She is reluctant, but eventually agrees to do the job, sacrificing herself for the greater good of reality. Spawn's fight with Sinn, it turns out, is a massive distraction, allowing her to seize control.

Art from Spawn #350

(Image credit: Image Comics)

Having received the power boost that comes with sitting on the Throne, Queen Nyx annihilates Sinn in a single blast. She then confronts Spawn and, accusing him of having grown arrogant, banishes him from Hell, seemingly forever. 

In an epilogue we see Al return to Earth along with Jessica Priest, but the two are alarmed to discover that neither of them can now access their powers. They fight and defeat some monsters, but in a final sting it's revealed that in Spawn's absence the Dead Zones - portals between Heaven, Hell, and Earth - have spread out to cover the entire globe, making it easier for demonic beings to enter the world, while all of our heroes are, quite literally, powerless...

Spawn #350, written by Todd McFarlane and Rory McConville, and drawn by Brett Booth and Carlo Barberi, is out now from Image Comics.

Spawn is, without doubt, one of the best non-Marvel or DC comic book superheroes.

Will Salmon
Comics Editor

Will Salmon is the Comics Editor for GamesRadar/Newsarama. He has been writing about comics, film, TV, and music for more than 15 years, which is quite a long time if you stop and think about it. At Future he has previously launched scary movie magazine Horrorville, relaunched Comic Heroes, and has written for every issue of SFX magazine for over a decade. He sometimes feels very old, like Guy Pearce in Prometheus. His music writing has appeared in The Quietus, MOJO, Electronic Sound, Clash, and loads of other places and he runs the micro-label Modern Aviation, which puts out experimental music on cassette tape.