The Super-Skrull saves the galaxy, Pt. 3Posted: 08/17/2014
Supervillains lose a lot. It sort of goes with the profession. How many times would the galaxy be wiped out without superheroes kickin’ butt every time a bad guy rears his or her head? But sometimes, we get these special character moments where the baddie puts aside his or her loser nature, embraces redemption, and fights to protect and save all that is precious to him or her. The Super-Skrull did that. And he still lost.
In a heartbreaking plot twist, the young Skrull mechanic the Super-Skrull attempted to turn into a soldier (complete with discipline, ferocity, and an unrelenting brutality) backfired completely when our protagonist pushed too hard and caused his protege to betray him. Now the Super-Skrull’s son — along with millions of innocent Skrulls — died when the Harvester of Sorrow exploded the planet Zargaz’na. We pick up our story with the captured Super-Skrull and his allies facing the full brunt of their horrific defeat.
Now with nothing to lose, the Super-Skrull plans to smear the blood of his enemies across the spaceship floors like the corridors are flooding bug guts. Not one gut will be spared. He is a supervillain, after all. Escaping turns out to be no problem. Remember back to his very first story back in 1963? Aside from the combined powers of the Fantastic Four, he possesses one more ability none of them have: mind control.
You could say his proclamation at the end is a giant face slap of negativity making Kl’rt a huge hypocrite, but we’ll ignore all that. So that attractive robot lady of his is like a energy reactor or something (I’m not great at science). If she unleashes all her power at once from the inside of the ship, it might still destroy the Harvester of Sorrows. It’ll also kill her and everyone else on board, so the Super-Skrull might just be stating facts instead of contradicting himself. The robot and the pudding monster start to clear a path without our dear supervillain — he has something else he needs to take care of.
Y’see, poor R’kin hated the Super-Skrull so much (for surprisingly legitimate reasons) that he failed to actually listen to the Super-Skrull when the supervillain talked. The whole plan to destroy this battleship came with two goals: to ensure his son’s legacy as the child of a hero and to die spectacularly in battle. The Super-Skrull has been pretty open about the notion of him martyring himself. We remember the heroes that died saving the Marvel universe far more fondly than those that continued to punch bank robbers well past their spotlight. So yes, R’kin’s plan is a logical one, and yes, it does appeal to the Super-Skrull’s well-known moral ambiguity. But y’know how this’ll work out.
With the child doomed and his revenge completed, it’s time to take out this Harvester of Sorrow for real this time. And honestly, what other way did you possibly think it was going to go? But take note: maybe a tiny sliver of R’kin’s argument got through to that cold, angry Super-Skrull heart.
You can click on the picture above for a larger version. The kiss isn’t as weird as you think — I didn’t show you an earlier scene where Praxagora came onto him romantically and he violently rejects the robot’s intentions. With the battleship destroyed, the Super-Skrull saved hundreds of worlds from destruction — it’s not like that thing was going to ever stop. Mission complete. Success!
Let’s play a game. How long do you think the Super-Skrull’s death lasted? Norman Osborn’s death lasted a few decades. Bucky Barnes’ got in a good forty years. Gwen Stacy is still dead from 1973. Even Sabretooth held out for five years. So any guess on the Super-Skrull? C’mon, you have an estimate? Spoiler alert: three months. He died in September 2006 and returned to the living in December 2006. Let’s take a look at it from Annihilation #2-3, written by Keith Giffen and drawn by Andrea DiVito.
Like all good cat fights, this one gets interrupted by an enemy attack. Also, Gamora would have decimated Praxagora. During the two issue battle in which you have that glorious moment where Drax holds back the entire Annihilation Wave by himself, some weird voodoo thingamajigs go on in the background.
Yup. That’s my all-time favorite reason for a character returning to life: “We’d like to explain it, but we’re busy Uh, how about magic?” Either way, our story ends here. On Wednesday, we pick up in the aftermath of Annihilation as Nova and Super-Skrull team up. It’ll serve as a bridge article for our big two-part finale where I promise everything gets wrapped in a wonderfully satisfying bow.