For the most part, comic books are an ongoing medium, a “never-ending story”, so to speak. Story arcs might end but the comics don’t end, they continue on for as long as the readers are interested and the books sell. It is rare when you have a comic that has a definitive end point. It is rarer still that those final stories are so perfect that they become instant classics.
With each of these stories, we get to see our main characters go on one final adventure, or complete one final task. Then, they often visit all the important people that the readers grew to love over the series before they take their metaphorical bow and head off into the sunset. In some cases, this may be a literal death, in others simply a walk out of the door, but it’s still a goodbye to characters that readers have grown to love.
For some of these tales, they are the end of the series itself. The book is over and this is its final word. For others, it is an ongoing title and this is the end of a run by a particular creative team; they have said all they can say and they are clearing the stage for the next set of creators to take up the mantle. Regardless, every one of the following stories is a magnificent read for every true comic book fan.
Government-sanctioned hero The Comedian was murdered and vigilante Rorschach believed it was a plot against “capes”. He warned his former partner Dan Dreiberg (Nite-Owl II), vastly-powered scientist Dr. Manhattan, his lover and former Silk Spectre II Laurie Juspeczyk, and Adrian Veidt (Ozymandias). Manhattan was publicly accused of giving former friends cancer and he exiled himself to Mars.
Rorschach was framed for the murder of his former foe Moloch and jailed. After Silk Spectre and Nite-Owl broke the revealed Walter Korvacs out of jail, Manhattan teleported Laurie to Mars, and through flashbacks, she discovered that the Comedian was her biological father. Seeing her humanity reignited Manhattan's own. Meanwhile, Nite-Owl and Rorschach discovered that Veidt was behind the conspiracy. They headed to Ozymandias’ arctic retreat, but not before Korvacs mailed his journal to a right-wing newspaper.
Veidt explained his plan to unite the world by faking an alien attack in New York City. He killed the Comedian and framed Manhattan and Rorschach to preserve the plan, which he had set in motion 35 minutes before they even arrived to thwart any attempt to stop him. When news reports revealed the world was coming together to stand against the perceived threat, the assembled heroes agreed to keep the secret, All except Rorschach, who Manhattan killed. Everyone went their separate ways as the last scene showed a reporter reaching for Rorschach's journal.