Appearing in "Superguardian"
- Lilandra (Only in flashback)
- Emperor Gladiator (Kallark) (Main story and flashback)
- Imperial Guard (Main story and flashback)
- Sybil (Oracle) (Main story and flashback)
- Smasher (Vril-Rokk) (Only in flashback)
- Warstar (Main story and flashback)
- Starbolt (Main story and flashback)
- Mentor (First appearance) (Main story and flashback)
- G-Type (Main story and flashback)
- Flashfire (Grannz)
- Titan (First appearance)
- Smasher (Galin) (Death)
- Unnamed Alien Armada
- Blackveil ("Adam")
- Dan Kane (Only in flashback) (Death)
- Izzy Kane's father (First appearance) (Only in flashback)
- Shi'ar crewmen (Only in flashback)
- Steersman Immundra (Only in flashback) (Death)
- The Shi'ar Galactic Rim
Synopsis for "Superguardian"
In a flashback, Lilandra sends Smasher of the Imperial Guard to warn about the destruction of one of their border planets. But Smasher’s ship is destroyed en route and he crashes to the Earth in Iowa, where a piece of his living costume is discovered by a farm girl, Izzy Kane. Izzy chats with father and grandfather, the latter of whom has been freeing animals from their pens. That night, Izzy, who previously studied astronomy in Colorado, is looking through a telescope, when Smasher’s goggles begin talking to her and instruct her to put them on. They manifest an entire Smasher costume, bestowing her with the strength, speed, flight, and other powers of Smasher. She flies into the night sky, through a hidden Shi’Ar stargate to the Shiar homeworld of Chandilar. She is guided into the presence of the other Imperial Guard as a kind of Smasher-in-training.
In the present, Tony Stark has begun communicating with the human grown by Ex Nihilo whose name is Blackveil. Cannonball and Sunspot ask where Smasher and Manifold are; Tony says they are in another galaxy. In the Shi’Ar galactic rim, the Imperial Guard are assaulted by sentient drones, and (the Shi’Ar) Smasher is killed in combat. Their distress call was answered by (the human) Smasher who arrives with many other Avengers as back-up to join the battle.
In the past, Smasher returns to Earth after a month, and happily re-unites with her father but also learns her grandfather has gotten sicker.
In the present, Smasher and Hulk decimate the enemy forces besieging the Shi’Ar Guardsmen. The Imperial Guard led by Gladiator arrives and victory is soon assured. Gladiator designates Izzy Dare as the new superguardian-class Smasher, the first ever human member of the Shi’Ar Imperial Guard.
In the past, Izzy speaks with her dying grandfather who gives her a message that he received from Captain America. He is in fact Dan Kane, the WWII-era hero called Captain Terror, and says that Izzy Kane has inherited a superhero’s birthright. In the present, Captain America smiles at her promotion and says, “The old man would be proud.”
Back on Chandilar, Oracle interrogates one of their captured enemies, and learns they were not actually invading Shi’Ar space, but rather running for their lives from another unknown entity.
• Meet Smasher, the first human member of the IMPERIAL GUARD and an Avenger.
• Watch as the Avengers travel across the galaxy to fight off an invading force.
• Watch as the Imperial Guard are broken on a dead moon.
- The scene showing the origin of the Shi'ar scrap that Izzy finds is from an issue of Grant Morrison's New X-Men #122.
- This issue's cover, along with those of issues #4 and #5, was originally going to continue the interconnected image from issues #1 to #3. However, since the full image would have consisted of a 180° panorama, the final covers would have shown Hyperion, Smasher and Captain Universe from a back view, which Weaver considered wasn't a good way to showcase the series' three new characters. The 180° view would also have required the addition of a villainous element for the Avengers to be facing, and there wasn't one that made sense for the series at the time. The idea to finish the image from issues #1 to #3 was later revisited in Weaver's variant covers for issues #25 to #27.