Marvel’s third is brought to life by writer Marc Guggenheim and artist Leonard Kirk, and stars Agent Coulson, Nick Fury and Dr Strange
‘Eternals’ expands the Marvel universe with a messy, history-spanning origin saga
The cosmic Marvel Universe gets a messy, history-spanning origin story in Volume One: The Hood, Volume Two: The Scorned, Volume Three: the Sorcerer Supreme, Volume Four: A Warrior’s Code, Volume Five: The Eternal and Volume Six: The Ancestor, as Agents of SHIELD’s Coulson and Nick Fury trade words over an ancient order formed some 40m years ago by a group of mysterious “Eternals”.
The classic origin story, coming from writer Marc Guggenheim and artist Leonard Kirk, takes place almost 13m years before the creation of the Infinity Stones in MCU-adjacent events, and fills in several gaps in the universe. Agents of SHIELD gets the pleasure of seeing the ancient empire in its own continuity, with an intriguing nod towards the agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Marvel Books has branded this one the “multi-verse” of the comics series in an effort to target bigger, mainstream readers, a world which is otherwise something of a boutique market. The introduction of the four new comic titles is a gimmick, but also makes the volume a little easier to sell.
The structure for the issue is especially promising, with more unusual backstory than the usual: the Hood has been released from prison, where he has been held since he destroyed the tomb of Wolverine; Scorned has done time for trafficking in supernatural beings; The Sorcerer Supreme has been all but destroyed in the Marvel Mansion’s collapsing staircase; and A Warrior’s Code features a timeline of all the characters attending a ceremony that revolves around the Iron Fist, the lone Iron Fist, currently in the public domain and unproduced by Marvel.
Volume Two features appearances from some familiar characters, such as Thanos, Warlock, Black Panther, Vision, and Captain Marvel, many of whom have appeared in the recent Marvel Cinematic Universe movies. Additionally, Kitty Pryde is mentioned, thanks to events in the Deadpool movie and her subsequent teaming up with Clark Gregg’s Coulson and S.H.I.E.L.D. in Agent Carter.
A separate Avengers like the cosmology contained within Volume One, it is unlikely that any characters from The Defenders TV series will be in Issue Three, which is mostly just a rehash of the first issue’s events.
Volume One: The Hood, Volume Two: The Scorned, Volume Three: The Sorcerer Supreme, Volume Four: A Warrior’s Code, Volume Five: The Eternal and Volume Six: The Ancestor was released digitally on Monday, and will be available in stores on Tuesday.