- I am power incarnate! To Galactus, nothing is impossible!
- -- Galactus
Appearing in "In Final Battle!"
Races and Species:
- Galactus' Bathoshere Spacecraft
Synopsis for "In Final Battle!"
Aboard Galactus' ship, Terrax confronts the Fantastic Four, intent on stopping them before they can prevent their master from consuming the Earth after he defeats the Sphinx. As the Fantastic Four lay into Terrax, both Reed and Ben prove no match as the Skrull aging ray continues to make them older and older, leaving Johnny the only one capable of fighting off their foe. As the fight rages on, HERBIE grabs some devices that Reed was working on and rushes out of the room.
Meanwhile outside in the city created by the Sphinx, the super-powerful immortal faces off against Galactus. Recalling this final battle as the fate he has been trying to prevent, the Sphinx is ready to battle Galactus and defeat it. Try as he might, the Sphinx is unable to destroy Galactus, who is able to recover from all of his attacks.
Back aboard Galactus' ship, the battle against Terrax rages on, but Reed and Ben are far to weak to continue. Pulling himself into the other room, Reed orders HERBIE to stop what he is doing and use his power to bring the Thing back to the Baxter Building. In the other room, the Torch continues to battle Terrax. Spotting a cooling pipe behind his foe, Johnny begins bombarding Terrax with his most powerful flame. Having no apparent effect, Terrax gloats until Johnny uses his powers to burst the cooling pipe, unleashing its contents on Terrax, freezing him solid. While outside, the Sphinx is fairing poorly against Galactus, who ultimately begins to overpower his foe. At that very moment, HERBIE returns to the Baxter Building with the Thing and places him in a cryogenic tube next to Sue, then the robot skuttles off to complete some unknown task.
Meanwhile in Egypt, the Sphinx is utterly defeated at the hands of Galactus, who plucks the Ka Stone from his brow and crushes it into dust, stropping him of his powers. Now a mere mortal again, the Sphinx is horrified when Sayge suddenly appears before him. Sayge once more tells the Sphinx that when one looks upon his face they only see their fate reflected back at them, and that this moment was always the fate of the Sphinx. Seeking to punish the Sphinx, Galactus then uses his vast power to send the Sphinx back in time to the time he was lost in the desert after being exiled by Ramses II. There, Galactus tells him, he will continue to live his life over and over in a perpetual loop, eternal for all time, tortured to relive the same life over and over.
With the Sphinx defeated, Sayge offers Galactus the chance to look upon his own fate. The world devourer declines, telling the mystic that his destiny is sealed and that Sayge has nothing to show him. Suddenly the Watcher appears and tells Galactus that he is soon to be defeated. Galactus is shocked by this admission and is more horrified when Reed and Johnny exit the ship with what appears to be a newly created Ultimate Nullifier of Reed's own design. When Galactus tries to scan Reed's mind to learn if he is bluffing he finds that there is some kind of interference preventing him from doing so. However, now that he is free from his pledge, Galactus warns Richards that now that he is free from his vow he will return to Earth some day to destroy it. After Galactus has left, Reed explains to Johnny that it was a all a bluff, and that the "Ultimate Nullifier" was merely a prop. With the threat over, the two remaining members of the Fantastic Four quickly realize that the Watcher bent the rules to hedge the bets in their favor. "Needing" to record Reed's immediate thoughts, the Watcher's own mental probe prevented Galactus from initiating his own. With his observations done, the Watcher teleports away. No sooner is the Watcher gone does Reed collapse, he himself finally falling victim to the Skrulls aging ray. Johnny catches Reed in his arms and fears that his leader and brother-in-law might be dead.
- Unknown to all, HERBIE is under the control of Doctor Sun as revealed in Fantastic Four #217.
- Although the Sphinx appears to be caught in an endless loop of reliving his life here, he manages to cheat this and return to the modern era as seen in Marvel Two-In-One #91.
- The Ultimate Nullifier is a device Reed threatened to use against Galactus in Fantastic Four #50. This is a phony replication.
- Shooter is consulting editor.
- This issue is reprinted in the comics and books, see references for more info.
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- Images from Fantastic Four Vol 1 213
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