Appearing in "Secret Wars 3"
- Mister Fantastic
- Invisible Woman (Possessed by Malice )
- Silver Surfer
- Rick Jones (Only in flashback)
- Captain America (Only in flashback)
- Sub-Mariner (Only in flashback)
- Human Torch (Hammond) (Only in flashback)
- Patriot (Only in flashback)
- Vision (Only in flashback)
- Angel (Only in flashback)
- Blazing Skull (Only in flashback)
- Klaw (Only in flashback)
- Terrax (Only in flashback)
- Nuwali (Only in flashback)
- Fortisquians (Only in flashback)
- Max (Only in flashback)
- AIM (Only in flashback)
- Hulk (Cameo)
- New York City
- Negative Zone
- Beyonder's Universe
- Cosmic Cube
- Negative Zone Portal
- Doctor Doom's Armor
- Tyros's Techno-Suit (Only in flashback)
- Aquarium Cage (Only in flashback)
- Force Cage (Only in flashback)
- Molecular Cage (Only in flashback)
- Plasteel Sphere (Only in flashback)
- Captain America's Shield (Only in flashback)
- Captain America's Uniform (Only in flashback)
Synopsis for "Secret Wars 3"
Continued from last issue...
At the edge of the Negative Zone, the Thing, Ms. Marvel, Human Torch and Dr. Doom are coming toward a breach that will bring them to the universe that the Beyonder existed in prior to his death. Doom explains to his old foes that it is there, at the Crossroads of Infinity that they will learn the secret of the Beyonders.
While on Earth, the Molecule Man has recovered from the injuries he sustained from a mystery attack. Taking a cab home with his girlfriend Marsha, he cannot remember who attacked him. He opens a portal through time and space to look into his past and is surprised to see that it was Dr. Doom who attempted to kill him and that his powers subconsciously protected him from that fate. Being kicked out of their cab for such a display, Marsha asks what they should do next, but the Molecule Man is still thinking. While at the Four Freedoms Plaza, Alicia continues to monitor the FF's travels through the Negative Zone when an alarm goes off. To her shock and dismay, the ship passes through the portal and contact is severed, making Alicia worry if her husband and friends have been killed or not.
As the heroes cross through the Crossroads of Infinity, they are hurtled through various universes. As they travel onward, they are shocked to pass by a ship containing their old teammates Reed and Sue who are traveling along with the Silver Surfer, who quickly disappear before they can make sense of things. Before Ben can turn their ship around, Doom tells them to stay on course and they soon end up in the universe they intended to reach. They are surprised to find that it is a near duplicate of their own universe, however Doom corrects them by saying it is the universe the Beyonder created before his death. As they approach the Beyonder's version of Earth, the Beyonder detects their presence, makes himself appear in the face of the sun, and tells the invaders to his universe that they are all dead.
They are suddenly transported to the planet's surface where the Beyonder manifests in his old human form, intending to slay them in a more personal fashion. When Ben steps up to fight the Beyonder, the One From Beyond easily knocks him aside with a simple bolt fired from his pinky finger. Before he can destroy them, Doom tells the Beyonder that he has only come seeking to become whole. Interested, but not understanding, the Beyonder asks what he means. Doom explains that when he was plucked by the Beyonder to participate in the Secret Wars and Doom subsequently stole his powers, it was during a time when Doom was supposedly dead during a battle with Terrax, prompting the Beyonder to pull Doom from a future time. However, Doom was not in reality dead, but had used his Ovid mind switch abilities to trade bodies with Norman McArthur. So when, much later, Doom regained control of his Latverian embassy in New York he attempted to summon the most powerful being on Earth to restore his body, the Beyonder, without actually having met him. The Beyonder was about to destroy him but was convinced by Reed Richards not to do so. Richards explained that if he killed Doom it would cause a spacetime cataclysm that would have destroyed all of existence, including the Beyonder. The Beyonder then recreated Doom's original body and restored his mind to it and transported him into the past to participate in the Secret Wars. However, Doom, explains that he is not complete as he was stripped of his memories regarding his "future" knowledge and as such is incomplete. Without these memories, his ward Kristoff manages to maintain the illusion that he is the true Dr. Doom, and thus maintain control of the universe. He appeals to the Beyonder's need for fulfillment to restore these memories.
However, before the Beyonder can do so, the Shaper of Worlds and Kubik appear, and Kubik attacks the Beyonder. Kubik destroys the Beyonder's mortal body which only makes him manifest in a godly form above the planet. As the two powerful beings battle, the Molecule Man and Volcana appear as well. When the Molcecule Man and Volcana attempt to help the Beyonder, the Shaper uses his powers to kill Volcana; however Molecule Man resurrects her and creates a device similar to the one that brought the heroes to Battleworld during the Secret Wars to protect them. With the battle being useless, the Shaper stops Kubik and the Beyonder from taking it further, telling them that the Molecule Man knows the truth behind everything.
The Molecule Man tells Doom that he cannot have his memory restored, as it would give him the knowledge to usurp the Beyonder's power again and that cannot be allowed. Owen, the Shaper and Kubik then go on to explain the secrets that the FF and Doom have been seeking all along, the mystery of the Beyonders:
The Beyonders are beings from another universe that are beyond anyone's comprehension; they have and never will be seen again. However, they have been curious about other universes and as such made contact with these other realms to learn more about them. They particularly became interested in this universe's planet Earth and its potential for creating super-human beings of vast power. They originally hired the Nuwali to go to Earth and create the Savage Land as a wildlife preserve so that they could learn about Earth's natural evolution. When interaction with the Nuwali became too bothersome, they created the Fortisquians to take up the task instead, leading to beings like Max monitoring the planet Earth. The third phase of their plan was to grant fulfillment to those they had come to watch by means of the Cosmic Cubes. They explained that they orchestrated events to allow both the Skrulls and AIM to create their own Cosmic Cubes, devices that would grant the wishes of those who utilized them until the Cubes evolved and became sentient. The Shaper and Kubik were the evolved versions of the Skrull and AIM Cosmic Cubes. They then explain that on the day that Owen Reece created the accident that turned him into the Molecule Man, he opened a portal to the dimension that contained the energies that come from inside the Cube. This process was incomplete as Owen was not a proper containment vessel so only part of the power was transferred into himself while the other, larger portion remained separate and become the Beyonder, setting off the chain of events that led to the first and second Secret Wars.
With that explanation, Owen tells the Beyonder that in order to be complete and for the Beyonder to find fulfillment, they must merge together and become a new Cosmic Cube. The Beyonder at first balks at this idea, reveling in the fact that in this universe of his own creation he is God. However, when the Thing tells him that the Beyonder mucked with his life but he ultimately found contentment by finding love with Sharon, he realizes that in order to find complete fulfillment and meet his destiny he must merge with the Molecule Man. And so, with Owen making a tearful farewell to Marsha, the two beings merge into one, creating a new Cosmic Cube and causing the universe to collapse around them. As the remaining beings float above the massive cube, Dr. Doom straddles it and demands to have his memories restored. His wish is granted, however before any of the others can make a wish, Kubik and the Shaper teleport them back to Earth.
Ben is furious that they took them away before he could wish for world peace. Doom scoffs at this idea, telling the Thing that world peace can only be attained once he has taken over the world. With their task complete, Doom departs to plot to retake his homeland from his impostor while Johnny rushes off to find Alicia. When Marsha departs to grieve over the loss of Owen, Sharon asks Ben if he meant he was truly content. He tells him that he is, and they share a kiss and the walk off as Sharon muses that their entire adventure all began with a simple trip into the tunnels of the Mole Man.
- Doctor Doom mentions how he once stole the power of the Beyonder. This happened in Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #10-12 until the Beyonder took it back. He also references the Beyonder's recent death in their universe which happened in Secret Wars II #9.
- Johnny's romantic woes are long running and as follows, touched upon here are far more complex than to be told:
- Alicia used to date the Thing for years, starting in Fantastic Four #9.
- Johnny and Crystal dated between Fantastic Four #65-105 until the outside world's pollution forced her to return home to Attilan.
- Crystal ended up rescuing Quicksilver along the way and the two fell in love as seen in Fantastic Four #131-132. Crystal and Quicksilver later got married in Fantastic Four #150. Johnny had a series of failed relationships while Ben and Alicia remained together over the years.
- When most of the Fantastic Four were among those kidnapped by the Beyonder to battle in the first Secret Wars on Battleworld, Ben discovered he could change back and forth and believe it was because of Battleworld itself. He decided to stay there in Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #12.
- Ben remained in Battleworld between Thing #11-22 where he eventually lost his ability to change back into Ben Grimm and returned to Earth.
- While Ben was on Battleworld, and as explained in Fantastic Four #358, Alicia was secretly replaced by the Skrull spy Lyja who was sent to infiltrate the Fantastic Four. With the Thing no longer part of the team she focused her attention on Johnny. Lyja took Alicia's place during the events of Fantastic Four #265.
- Ben eventually returned in Fantastic Four #277 and discovered Johnny's relationship with "Alicia", between this and other betrayals, Ben quit the Fantastic Four in Thing #23. Johnny and "Alicia's" relationship continued to flourish.
- Ben eventually ended up living with the Mole Man who cured him of the virus. He was eventually found by the Fantastic Four who convinced him to rejoin the team, he did so grudgingly.
- Johnny recently married "Alicia" in Fantastic Four #300
- Meanwhile, Crystal had and affair with Norm Webster and was eventually caught during the events ofVision and the Scarlet Witch Vol 2 #6 through 12.
- In Fantastic Four #303 Ben realized that he still loved Alicia Masters.
- Reed elected Ben to replace him as leader of the Fantastic Four in Fantastic Four #304
- Ben then asked Crystal to join the Fantastic Four in Fantastic Four #305, partially to spite the Torch.
- Johnny went so far as to accuse Crystal of trying to break up his marriage in Fantastic Four Annual #20. But the two eventually buried the hatchet.
- In Fantastic Four #313 Johnny began to realize he still has feelings for Crystal.
- Crystal recently left the team in Fantastic Four Annual #21.
- Doctor Doom refers to how he was recently ousted from his kingdom of Latveria. This was by his own ward Kristoff Vernard in Fantastic Four Annual #20.
- Ben and his team cross paths with a ship containing Reed, Sue and the Silver Surfer. These events happen simultaneously with those of Silver Surfer Vol 3 #16. Reed and Sue were depicted helping the Silver Surfer stop the Elders of the Universe from gathering the Infinity Gems as seen in Silver Surfer Vol 3 #15-19.
- The entire universe they are the the full sum of the Beyonder's energy, shunted back to his home dimension following his physical death on Earth in Secret Wars II #9.
- Doom goes through the complex series of events that happened during his past encounters with the Beyonder:
- During his battle against Tyros the Tamer in Fantastic Four #260, while Doom's body was destroyed he cheated death by using the Ovoids mind-swapping technique on Norman McArthur.
- While Doom was believed dead the Beyonder kidnapped various heroes and villains to participate in the Secret Wars in Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #1, which included Doctor Doom, who was apparently alive and well and unaware of his past destruction.
- In Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #10 Doom stole the power of the Beyonder, only for the Beyonder to take it back again in issue #12 of that series and banish Doom from Battleworld.
- Also while Doom was assumed dead, his Doombots reprogrammed his ward Kristoff Vernard with Doom's mind and personality in Fantastic Four #378. Kristoff was defeated and imprisoned by the Fantastic Four.
- The real Doctor Doom later broke into the Latverian embassy and summoned the Beyonder to restore his body to its normal self in Fantastic Four #288. It was then determined by Reed Richards that the Doom who battled the heroes in the first Secret Wars was from the future. In order to prevent a time paradox, the Beyonder restored Doom to normal and then sent him into the past to participate in the Secret Wars before being returned to that very moment after he was defeated and banished by the Beyonder.
- Kubic appears here following the events of Avengers #289-290 where the Avengers prevented the Super-Adaptoid from taking advantage of Kubic's power.
- The Shaper of Worlds appears here following the events of Captain America Annual #7 where he recovers a Cosmic Cube from AIM.
- Johnny recognizes the Shaper as they previously met in Fantastic Four #137.
- Volcana reminds Doom that he created her powers. This happened in Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #3.
- The massive ring that appears around the heroes is the same one that kidnapped the heroes from Earth in the original Secret Wars. Ben and Johnny first saw one in Thing #10.
- Sharon mentions that the Molecule Man helped defeat the Beyonder before, in Secret Wars II #9.
- The Shaper states that the Beyonders have never been seen before. They are eventually seen for the first time in New Avengers Vol 3 #29.
- The scene of Rick Jones using the Destiny Force to summon simulations of heroes from World War II was from Avengers #97 when Rick used his powers to stop the Kree-Skrull War.
- The Nuwali creating the Savage Land was first depicted in Ka-Zar the Savage #34 while the Fortisquians being agents of the Beyonders was first seen in Comet Man #1.
- The flash back depicting AIM creating the Cosmic Cube is from Tales of Suspense #79.
- Owen recounts his origins as they happened in Fantastic Four #20. However unknown to all at the time, the accident that gave Owen his powers was orchestrated by the Beyonders to turn Owen into a living bomb they could use to destroy the universe whenever they saw fit. This fact is later revealed in New Avengers Vol 3 #33.
- The fact that the Beyonder and Owen being part of an incomplete cosmic cube has been refuted by a number of contradictory statements later on. These are:
- The fact that Owen and the Beyonder were two parts of the same Cosmic Cube was later revealed to be false given the Beyonders hands in creating the Molecule Man as their weapon as stated in New Avengers Vol 3 #33. Later after the Beyonder and Owen are merged into a Cosmic Cube, Owen is set free in Fantastic Four Annual #24.
- In New Avengers: Illuminati Vol 2 #3 the Beyonder has stated that he was a mutant that was exposed to the Terrigen Mists. These claims are highly dubious when the grand scheme of things are taken into consideration.
- Unknown to all gathered here, the Molecule Man secretly passed a fraction of his powers to Volcana. This is theorized in Fantastic Four Annual #23 and verified in Fantsatic Four Annual #24.
- Following their appearances various characters make appearances in other stories:
- The Shaper next appears in a flashback in Incredible Hulk #355 where he fails to guide his disciple Glorian to use his powers responsibly.
- Kubic and the Beyonder (in his female form of Kosmos) next appear in Fantastic Four Annual #23.
- Doctor Doom next appears in Incredible Hulk #349 where he seeks to employ the Hulk.
- Volcana is next seen battling Moonstone in Fantastic Four Annual #23.
- This issue is reprinted in comics and books, see references for more info.
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