Marvel Database

Appearing in "The Annihilation Gambit!"

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Synopsis for "The Annihilation Gambit!"

The invisible barrier which surrounds the Baxter Building is the work of the Fantastic Four's nemesis, Annihilus, who has escaped from the Negative Zone and trapped the foursome therein. Having lost the Cosmic Control Rod which sustained his immortality, the mad villain has decided that if he must die, so must all living things. He has therefore generated a "null-field," within which a positive-energy field grows; when the two meet, Earth's universe and the Negative Zone will merge and be destroyed. The Avengers assemble but fail to breach the field or slow its inexorable growth.

The Vision and the Scarlet Witch arrive to help, but when the android steps through the barrier, he is instantly deactivated. Fortunately, Starfox recognizes what Annihilus is attempting, and a plan is conceived. Captain Marvel flashes into space in light form and merges with a beam from the sun-orbiting Starcore satellite, becoming a gamma-ray laser which succeeds in neutralizing the null-field. Entering the Baxter Building, the Avengers find the Fantastic Four, who have returned from the Negative Zone.

Solicit Synopsis

In a crossover with Fantastic Four Vol 1 256, the Avengers battle to save the world from the threat of Annihilus.


  • Continued from Fantastic Four #254, the Avengers' story continues in Fantastic Four #256. The events following the defeat of Annihilus in this story are also mirrored in Vol 1 256. The last two pages of both issues are nearly identical, with both issues written and drawn by Byrne though Byrne inked his own pencils in Vol 1 256.
  • Wasp carries the same security key for the Fantastic Four's private elevator in her belt buckle that the members of the Fantastic Four have in their uniforms.
  • Vision sustains injury due to Annihilus' null-field, becoming incapacitated.
  • Thor is forcibly turned into his Donald Blake alter ego when Mjolnir is trapped on the other side of the null-field.
  • Hawkeye's leg is in a cast thanks to an earlier injury.


  • Plot by Stern and Byrne, script by Stern.

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