I am a fan of Marvel’s “cosmic” characters but I haven’t been following them for some years now (not since 2004, I reckon). I’ve tried to keep my mind in over the years [including Thunderbolts #100 (2006), the Civil War: The Return one-shot (2007) and the five-issue Captain Marvel limited series and The Mighty Avengers #19 (both 2008)], but none of those really seemed to strike my fancy. I don’t know what caused me to pick up the Thanos Imperative: Ignition one-shot a couple of weeks ago, but I had previously read the six-issue “Samaritan” story (Thanos #7-12) by Giffen and Lim (i.e., “someone other than Starlin”), so I figured what the hell.

I know from previous experience that mentioning Jim Starlin’s name is immediately going to polarize the opinions of those reading this, but to them I say to re-read (or read) his last major “cosmic” trilogy for Marvel (Infinity Abyss #1-6, Marvel: The End #1-6 and Thanos #1-6) in a single sitting (as I did just this morning) before rebutting.

Reading Thanos Imperative: Ignition was like opening the floodgates to the past several years’ worth of Marvel’s “cosmic” comics and doing so convinced me that someone other than Starlin can write cosmic Marvel comics. Initially my intention had been to follow just the Thanos Imperative limited series, but after two issues, discussions with Alan and Dagwan, and some research on my own, I decided to backtrack and pick up some of the series I had inadvertently “trade waited.”

I the days to come I will be starting at two different points in the cosmic timeline: at the very beginning with the Annihilation Book 1 tpb (collecting Drax the Detroyer #1-4, Annihilation: Prologue one-shot, and Nova #1-4) as well as Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1 (collecting issues #1-6). In addition, I will be discussing future issues of Thanos Imperative in this thread as they are released.

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Philip Portelli said:
BTW, is there any reason why Monica Rambeau/Photon/Pulsar can't call herself Captain Marvel now?

Other than the fact that there have been at least 3 other people to use the name since (Genis-Vel, Phyla-Vel, and Noh-Var, the former Marvel Boy, who currently doesn't have a codename), I can't think of one. I'd kind of want to stay away from it though. most of the other Captain Marvels are dead or worse now.

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Jeff of Earth-J said:
Figs, I'm assuming Jeff means he's starting with the current Guardians of the Galaxy series

Right. I’ll be starting with volume two.

Well, Vol. 1 of Volume 2. :P

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read." -Groucho Marx

Check out the Secret Headquarters (my store) website! It's much better now!

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Jeff of Earth-J said:
I’m really looking forward to it. I can hardly wait until Wednesday!

Man, oh man, oh man, oh man...! I'm in a quandry!

I really couldn't wait until Wednesday, so I went to my LCS over lunch and flipped through all the Annihilation tpbs and the first Guardians of the Galaxy as well. I now have a pretty good idea of where everything I'm interested in reading falls in the timeline. I know what I want to read. I want to read about Mantis and Adam Warlock and Bug and Peter Quill. On the one hand, I want to jumt straight to it, but on the other I don't want to jump in in the middle of an ongoing story.

I ended up buying a reprint of (the original) Nova #1 and #4 with a new framing sequence and I'll think about it for two more days.
Noh-Var is calling himself the Protector!

Dagwan said:
Philip Portelli said:
BTW, is there any reason why Monica Rambeau/Photon/Pulsar can't call herself Captain Marvel now?

Other than the fact that there have been at least 3 other people to use the name since (Genis-Vel, Phyla-Vel, and Noh-Var, the former Marvel Boy, who currently doesn't have a codename), I can't think of one. I'd kind of want to stay away from it though. most of the other Captain Marvels are dead or worse now.

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read." -Groucho Marx

Check out the Secret Headquarters (my store) website! It's much better now!

Listen to WOXY.com, it's the future of rock-n-roll!


Wow, Jeff. You might want to go the whole hog and read the Nova Essential, then all the appearances of the Shi-Ar in Claremont's comics, and then .... and then....

I read Drax the Destroyer last night so I'm looking forward to jumping into Anihilation, by the way.
The one thing I'll say, and this isn't a criticism by any stretch, is that the original Annihilation books were driven more by Keith Giffen, whereas the later Marvel Cosmic stuff has been driven (and primarily written) by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning. While none of it's bad, Abnett & Lanning's work has been the primary stuff that's been really garnering the attention and getting all the praise, so Annihilation may not 100% capture the tone of where Cosmic Marvel is right now...

I have a little bit to say about the reading order for Annihilation: Conquest, too, but I'll wait 'til you get there. :)
It’s a daunting prospect, I must admit. If you have any particular recommendation for a good jumping on point, I’d be glad to consider it. (But see, Figs has already read Drax and is now waiting for me to catch up!) SIGH. Decisions, decisions…

Figserello said:
Wow, Jeff. You might want to go the whole hog and read the Nova Essential, then all the appearances of the Shi-Ar in Claremont's comics, and then .... and then....

You know, I am very seriously considering buying the Annihilation Classic collection. The only reason I didn’t buy it yesterday is that my LCS only had it in HC. I did, however, buy this

NOVA: THE ORIGIN OF RICHARD RIDER:

I didn’t collect the original Nova series when it was a current, but I picked up the entire thing cheap after it had been cancelled. It was purported to be the new Spider-Man, but I was decidedly underwhelmed and ultimately decided to trade it in for something else. Years later I reconsidered my decision and bought the entire series cheap a second time, but have not yet been motivated to re-read it.

Yesterday I bought Nova: The Secret Origin of Richard Rider, which reprints issues #1 and #4 of the original series and is framed by a sequence which occurs between issues #20 and #21 of the most recent series. I read it last night and liked it more than I ever did in the past. What I saw as flaws 20 years ago were all still there, but I now found them charming. I can easily see how the original series might have been “Spider-Man” to someone coming of age (the “Golden Age of 12,” that is) when these comics were originally released.

Regarding the framing sequence, I liked what I saw but there wasn’t really enough to judge whether or not I’d like to new stuff.
Jeff of Earth-J said:
It’s a daunting prospect, I must admit. If you have any particular recommendation for a good jumping on point, I’d be glad to consider it. (But see, Figs has already read Drax and is now waiting for me to catch up!) SIGH. Decisions, decisions…

Oh, I'd say definitely jump on at the beginning of Annihilation (or rather, the beginning of the collection, which I guess would be the Drax mini) — it's definitely the starting point of the current Cosmic Marvel universe. The only specific "reading order" point I'd make is when you get to Annihilation: Conquest, somewhere in there (maybe between vols. 1 and 2), you should read Nova vol. 2: Knowhere, as events in it are pivotal to the Conquest storyline, but are inexplicably left out of the Annihilation: Conquest collection. (I think they put in a one-page text page recapping them, but it was more confusing than useful for me.)

Nova vol. 2 also sets up much of the premise for Guardians of the Galaxy, so if you're going to be reading that one, it's a useful book to read.
Here’s what the collections include:

ANNIHILATION BOOK 1
Drax the Destroyer #1-4
Annihilation: Prologue
Nova #1-4

ANNIHILATION BOOK 2
Silver Surfer #1-4
Super-Skrull #1-4
Ronan #1-4

ANNIHILATION BOOK 3
Annihilation #1-6
Heralds of Galactus #1-2
The Nova Corps Files

ANNIHILATION: CONQUEST BOOK 1
Annihilation Conquest: Prologue
Quasar #1-2
Starlord #1-4
Annihilation Saga

ANNIHILATION: CONQUEST BOOK 2
Wraith #1-4
Nova #4-7
Annihilation: Conquest #1-6

It is at this point I slotted Guardians of the Galaxy (V2) Vol. 1 based on your previous post which stated that Annihilation: Conquest launched Guardians of the Galaxy. (I’m not even thinking about War/Reign of Kings at this point!) I am assuming that Nova Vol. 1 reprints #1-6 and Vol. 2 reprints #7-12. (I know the Nova HC collects #1-12 and that Nova Vol. 3 reprints #13-18.) Based on your post directly above, you recommend I slot Nova Vol. 2 between Annihilation: Conquest Book 2 and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1, right?
I'd actually suggest you stop Annihilation: Conquest book 2 after you reach Nova #7, pick up Nova vol. 2 (which actually collects issues 8-12), read that, and THEN go back to Conquest.

(If you're willing to cover postage, I can send you my copy of Nova vol. 2 -- I only got it to read that chunk of story, and having read it, I don't particularly have need of the book anymore...)

Depending on how much you want to know characters' backstories, the only other thing that MIGHT be worth reading is the recent Captain Universe collection, only insofar as it sets up the newest Captain Universe, who appears in Conquest. It's absolutely not necessary, though, as everything you need to know about him is given in-story, and the Captain Universe TPB itself is not very.......good. (I can send you that one, too, if you really want it.)
I'd actually suggest you stop Annihilation: Conquest book 2 after you reach Nova #7, pick up Nova vol. 2 (which actually collects issues 8-12), read that, and THEN go back to Conquest.

Ah, got it. Thanks!

Depending on how much you want to know characters' backstories, the only other thing that MIGHT be worth reading is the recent Captain Universe collection…

The one collecting Marvel Spotlight #9-11, Hulk Annual #10 “and more”? (I’ve got the Marvel “Reading Chronology” in front of me.) I see that it’s by Gerry Conway, Steve Ditko, Dan Slot (“and more”). I’m assuming the Dan Slot story introduces the new Captain Universe…? And don’t worry… I have the original issues of the comics mentioned above, so I know what to expect.

If you're willing to cover postage, I can send you my copy of Nova vol. 2…
I can send you [the Captain Universe TPB], too, if you really want it.


I think I’ll take you up on those offers. I’d be glad to send you postage or… I have some really good stuff I need to cull from my collection if you’d like to trade. Send me a message and we’ll work something out.
Jeff of Earth-J said:
Depending on how much you want to know characters' backstories, the only other thing that MIGHT be worth reading is the recent Captain Universe collection…

The one collecting Marvel Spotlight #9-11, Hulk Annual #10 “and more”?

Nope. The one collecting Amazing Fantasy (vol. 2) #13-14 and a bunch of Captain Universe/[insert hero here] one-shots, all by Jay Faerber.

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