Samurai are ancient Japanese Warriors, known for their extremely intense senses of duty and honor.
Super Heroes often choose to have a secret identity (as do Super Villains who often adopt aliases) when becoming a hero to protect themselves, their friends, and their loved ones. The consequences of an enemy finding out their real-life identity can be dire, often leading to the destruction of the hero's alter ego and/or the villain using a hero's loved one as bait.
The Celestials destroyed most of the Deviants, and their stronghold of Lemuria, causing it to sink below the ocean. This event has been referred to as the Great Fall or Great Cataclysm which also caused the sinking of Atlantis and Lemuria.
Seismokinesis, also known as Vibrokinesis, is the ability generate and/or manipulate vibrations and/or vibrational energy.
For a list of characters who can control vibrations, see Category:Seismokinesis.
Having intelligence near or above the human level. The definition of intelligence is slippery but often includes self-awareness, problem solving, and tool use.
Sentinels of Liberty
The Sentinels of Liberty were a youth group formed by Captain America during the 1940's. It was to promote support for the United States during World War II amongst the youth of America. It promoted national pride, and vigilance against lawlessness and spies that would threaten the United States. The most famous youths that were members of the Sentinels of Liberty were the wartime Young Allies.
(See Also: Young Allies)
[top] [Edit Sentinels of Liberty]
In Comic Books, the term sidekick most commonly refers to assistants of Superheroes, usually in a crimefighting capacity. The sidekick has the literary function of playing against the hero, often contrasting in skill, asking the questions the reader would ask, or performing functions not suited to the hero.
A point in space where the normal rules of physics do not apply. Normally found only in a Black Hole, a concentration of matter so dense that even light cannot escape its gravity well.
The lead deity of a particular pantheon or religion. The term refers to the tendency for worshipers to associate supreme power with the sun, the sky, and/or "heaven."
First officially referenced in Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #2, the term "Sliding Timescale" is an attempt to quantify the passage of time in Earth-616 (the Prime Marvel Universe, where all mainstream stories take place) and other similar universes as a means of compressing time so that characters do not age noticeably. While not considered when Marvel Comics first began publishing, it became apparent that something needed to be done to logically explain the flow time and how characters remained in the same age span as they were first introduced despite living through years of published stories. This practice began in the late 1970s and early 1980s. A full definition and explanation was made in 2007 in the aforementioned Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #2. The Sliding Timescale is used to keep track of the time that has passed during a period that is now coined as the Modern Age which covers events from Fantastic Four #1 to current publications.
During Marvel publications in the 1960s and 1970s the passage of time on Earth-616 was described in the narrative as passing in semi-real time. Characters frequently made reference to what year it was, and often identified previous stories as having taken place in the span of months between publications. Characters were identified as having been involved in era specific military conflicts. For example, Mister Fantastic and the Thing were depicted as fighting in World War II, while Professor X of the X-Men was depicted as fighting in the Korean War. Many origin stories and events were also depicted based then current events that are considered dated or historical by today's standards. For example, the Fantastic Four attempted to fly into space to beat the Soviet Union in the space race, and Tony Stark was depicted as having become Iron Man while testing weapons in Vietnam during the Vietnam War. Many early stories and villains were inspired by the Cold War, and the eras' understanding of science and technology at the time.
By the late 1970s, Marvel had to start altering certain facts as their characters were being prematurely aged. One example of this was stating that The Thing was now a test pilot instead of fighting during World War II. With the number of real life space flights, the origin of the Fantastic Four was updated to explain how they were mutated while later astronauts were able to travel to space without ill effects, this explanation included solar flares and radiation passing through the Van Allen Belts, early references to the Space Race as a motivating factor were also excised.
In the 1980s, the passage of time was being marked in a slower progression. It was during this decade that the first "compressed" passage of time between the birth of the Fantastic Four and a story published at that time was actually spoken. In the 1990s, rehashing events that age the characters was often ignored. In the 2000s, certain concepts were either generalized, often when described in the most recent runs of the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe and later depicted. Eventually a general standard for measuring time from Fantastic Four #1 to publications being published needed to be established.
Marvel has since classified that all stories that are occurring in the "present time" that have been published after Fantastic Four #1 are part of the Modern Age (also known as the Age of Marvels, Age of Heroes, the Modern Age of Heroes, etc.) instead of identifying any specific decade or century. As of 2016, roughly 14 years have passed since the birth of the Fantastic Four. This will be considered more or less the generally accepted passage of time until about late 2017.
In 2008, Marvel had officially stated  that for every four to five years of real time publications, one year of Marvel time had passed on Earth-616 and other time-sensitive realities. Based on a 4:1 radio model, the Modern Age of Heroes has been on going for about fourteen years based on the following model:
Year 01: Nov 1961-Oct 1965
To clarify: While a year of Marvel time is a rough count of 365 days to a year, this passage of "one year" does not follow the Gregorian calendar from January 1 to December 31, but a full year from the date of the space flight that created the Fantastic Four. The specific calendar date the Fantastic Four went on their fated space flight has remained vague. Although one source states it happened in the summer.
The sliding timescale is not an exact science and is a matter of interpretation, and there are parts of the scale that just don't work when applied to the most minuscule detail. Trying to quantify the passage of time between all publications and all years makes quantifying a definitive timeline a matter of interpretation. Calendar specific seasons and holidays depicted in stories make it difficult to quantify this passage.
Likewise, key life events of specific characters also can often come to odds with any sort of measurement. Items such as a characters actual age, when they celebrate their birthday or when they have reached age specific milestones can cause irregularities.
The best example of these difficulties can be gleaned when trying to determine how many years it took Peter Parker to graduate from high school. For example, Amazing Spider-Man #533 states that Peter was 15 years old when he first gained his powers in Amazing Fantasy #15. Peter is shown graduating from high school in Amazing Spider-Man #28. Amazing Fantasy #15 was published in 1962, while Amazing Spider-Man #28 was published in 1965. Based on the 4:1 ratio of the Timescale Peter had been operating as Spider-Man for roughly a year. According to Wikipedia the average student in New York City must complete 12 grades of education. Grade 12 being the final year of high school, the average age at graduation is 17-18 years old for that grade level. Based on this logic, if Peter was an average student he would have had to have completed at least another 2-3 years of schooling before reaching his diploma based on these real life guidelines. However, one could assume that due to Peter's level of intelligence and focus on his schooling he may have advanced in school sooner than others the same physical age.
The above example clearly illustrates that any measurement of the Sliding Timescale should be taken with a grain of salt. However, while there may not be an official explanation to quantify these irregularities, they can be interpreted at the whim of the reader.
However the purpose of the timescale is to apply a general passage of time, focus on such minuscule details are usually not addressed and regularly overlooked.
Another factor of consideration is the process of time compression. It is a common misconception that time in the Marvel Universe is constantly compressing, meaning that the events of following Fantastic Four #1 continue to compress so that less time has passed from that story to the present. This is not correct.
What is meant by "time compression" is that compression of four years of publications into a single year of Marvel Time. During a four year span of publications characters will reference events as though they happened in "real time." They may refer to a specific event happening a few months ago, or a year prior. However, after a certain period stating the physical number of years puts too much time between the present and past events and adds more time to history, cancelling out the purpose of the Sliding Timescale. As such, after four years of publications the events are condensed into a single year of "Marvel Time." Further references of those events would then adhere to the Sliding Timescale measurement as opposed to real time.
Civil War and Secret Invasion, per the sliding timescale occurred in "Year 12," of the sliding timescale. At the time Secret Invasion was being published the characters referred to the events of Civil War as happening over year ago. That measurement should be considered topical since it actually gives perspective of time between the two events via publication giving casual readers a point of reference between the two events.
However as soon as November 2009 elapsed and a new year of "Marvel Time" began, publications from November 2005 to October 2009 are compressed in a single year of "Marvel Time." These four years of publication signify one year. As such publications in the 2016 year the events published in Nov 2005-Oct 2009 should seen as happening about two years ago. This will remain the case until the next calendar roll over of November 2017, then those events get bumped back a single year.
To put this into perspective the timescale compresses time as so:
Topical References vs. Factual Reference
Certain facts, events, people of historical significance, pop-culture references, listed dates (such as the date on a newspaper headline), and sometimes even physical landmarks appear in comic books published years ago must be considered topical references relative to the date of publication so as not to prematurely age the characters or come to odds of the sliding timescale. As such the a reader should follow certain guidelines if they should accept these items as topical reference or a factual one.
A factual reference is one that cannot be refuted by the passage of the Sliding Timescale. They are events that are rooted to a particular era and the facts pertaining to these events cannot be subject to the timescale depending on when the story was published and what era of Marvel time the story is set in. For example, all Timely Comics stories that take place during World War II are all accepted as happening during the 1940s. Events depicted in this era are not subject to the Sliding Timescale, except for when a Modern Age story is measuring the passage of time between those events and the Modern Age.
A topical reference is a fact that is presented that gives the story context to the story as a frame of reference for the reader. These references are a product of the time the story is published and will become outdated with time. As such, modern readers observing such a reference from a story printed in a past decade -- for example someone in 2016 reading a comic book published in 1965 -- should never take these references literally. When describing these in a broader context -- such as describing the plot to a story or a characters history -- any references to these items should be at the very least generalized if not ignored.
The most common example is which individual is depicted as the President of the United States. These elements should be considered topical references. Topical References are facts that were true relative to the date that a given comic was published, and should be generalized when mentioned later. Since the publication of Fantastic Four #1 there have been about 13 presidential elections for the 50+ years of Modern Age publications. Based on the Sliding Timescale there should have only been 3 or 4, barring assassination, impeachment or other facts that might cut a presidency shorter than the 4 year term. However, various past presidents have been depicted as being the President of the United States during the Modern Age.
However, there are stories that have been published that have depicted a President operating in their appointed place in history as well as stories that were published during their tenure as president. For example, Richard Nixon has been depicted as the President in many Modern Age stories published between 1966 to 1976 starting with Incredible Hulk #119. These should all be considered topical references, especially considering the fact that Richard Nixon died in 1994. Whereas mentions of Richard Nixon in Marvel: The Lost Generation #7 should be considered factual references as they occurred in the 1970s of the Marvel Universe. Likewise, Nixon's appearances as a zombie in the modern age in Deadpool Vol 3 #3 should be considered factual as they are well after his death.
Readers should get used to referring to these individuals as simply the "President of the United States" in a general sense instead of citing a specific individual.
Another example of topical references coming into play involves celebrities. For example, Strange Tales #130 features a story where the Human Torch and the Thing met the rock group known as the Beatles. While this was possible when the story was first published in 1965, this would be considered a topical reference now. This could also be another instance where reader interpretation can also be used to explain a situation. As of 2016, Marvel hasn't referenced this story. Whereas typically they would generalize the Beatles -- identifying them as a "popular British rock group" for example --- one could argue that these are actually the Skrulls who have posed as the Beatles. However that is a matter of interpretation and has no factual grounds at this time.
Another example are historical events being depicted in comics, the same event has been depicted as happening both in a specific year in the past, and in the Modern Age. The best example is the Apollo 11 moon landing. Fantastic Four #98, published in 1969, depicts the Fantastic Four stopping the Kree from disrupting this mission. This story is considered as happening in the modern age. However recent editions of the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe have generalized this story. Instead of calling it the Apollo 11 space mission, they refer to it as a "manned spaceflight to the Moon". Conversely, Marvel: The Lost Generation #6, published in 2000, depicts the First Line preventing the Skrulls from interfering in the Apollo 11 mission. This story framed as taking place in the year 1969. Because the Fantastic Four story takes place in the Modern Age, the Apollo 11 landing in that story should be considered a topical reference and is generalized whenever it is mention in future publications. This story should be considered a factual reference because the story actually takes place in the year 1969.
Lastly, a more contemporary example of the Silding Timescale in motion is the depiction of the World Trade Center. Since Fantastic Four #1 the World Trade Center has been depicted as under construction as the original Twin Towers were completed in 1973. Since that date it has been predominantly featured as part of the New York City skyline in publications from 1973 to 2001. In 2001 the Twin Towers were destroyed in a terrorist attack. The skyline has not featured a building in that spot in publications until the complete of the new tower, One World Trade Center, in July 2013. What building stands in that location should be considered a topical reference in regards to any publication that depicts anything other than One World Trade Center in that location. That's because as of 2015, the Sliding Timescale has progressed that the Modern Age does not start until after 2001. The logistics of how this works is explained in the section below.
Computing Marvel Time
Remembering that the measurement of Marvel time is a matter of interpretation, one should always refer to said passages of time as a rough estimate and that various calculations could differentiate between years depending on how the calculation is depicted. Some readers will apply a strict four or five year passage of time to events, while others will consider other methods of time passing. The most prevalent being that the first year or two of Marvel publications between November 1961 and October 1963 actually occurred in "real time" and all other publications adhere to either a 4:1 or 5:1 ratio. For the sake of providing a clear example, this computation is using a strict 4:1 ratio timescale.
In order to calculate time, one must consider the current publications as happening this year. For example, comic books released on October 21, 2015 -- on the day they are published -- are considered as happening in the year 2015. The year 2015 falls in "year fourteen" of the modern age, which is slated to last until roughly October 2017. As each year elapses the story in October 2015 is taking place in 2016 when its the year 2016 and could be considered as happening a number of weeks or a few months prior, and happening in 2017 when that year elapses and be considered as happening a few month to half a year prior. The "year" that story occurred in would slide forward until October 2017. Once most of 2017 elapses and "year fifteen" begins in November 2017, then the story published in October 2015 begins to slide backward in time, making it an event that happened about a year prior. As it is characterized as "year fourteen" it slides backwards as Marvel time moves forward.
Applying this principal to past years can help give a rough idea of how many years has elapsed between periods of time.
Example #1: How many years passed since Captain America was revived in the modern age?
In Avengers #4 it was identified that Captain America was placed in suspended animation in April 1945 and revived in the modern age. That story was published in 1964 and states that Cap was in suspended animation for around 20 years. That reference of time is considered a topical reference based on the year that story was published. As the Sliding Timescale moves the amount of time between the fixed year of 1945 and the year Captain America is revived in will constantly be increasing.
If the present of Modern Age is 2016, and it is considered year fourteen of the Marvel Sliding Timescale, the time passing would be computed as so:
Avengers #4 was published in 1964. This falls under "year one" of the 4:1 timescale ratio. Today is 2016, the year 2016 falls in "year fourteen" of the 4:1 timescale ratio.
From 2016's perspective, Avengers #4 took place roughly fourteen years ago. So roughly the year 2002.
Cap going into suspended animation happened in 1945. So 2002 - 1945 = 57 years had passed between 1945 and Avengers #4. Based on 2016's publications; however, Captain America was put in suspended animation about 71 years ago.
When "year fifteen" draws to an end in October 2021, the time scale will have moved forward. The "present" will then considered 2021. Cap's freedom from suspended animation slides forward roughly one year. 2021 - 15 years = the events of Avengers #4 now happen in the year 2006; however, his time in suspended animation would now have lasted 61 years, and the time between 1945 and the "present" would then be 76 years.
Example #2: Determining a Topical Reference:
With the passage of time certain events, people, and places become topical references. One of the most prolific of these events was the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, which saw the destruction of the original twin towers (originally constructed in 1973) collapse. a new tower was constructed in its place in 2013.
It's a unique example of how the topical references are determined in the Marvel Universe. Because it was not constructed until 1973, it's obviously absent from all "Modern Age" stories from 1961 until it began construction. It was first depicted being constructed in Daredevil #82 published December 1971 and first depicted fully constructed in Astonishing Tales #18 published June 1973. Since that story it has regularly appeared as a staple of the New York City skyline in many Marvel publications. The terrorist attack was later depicted as happening in the Marvel Universe in Amazing Spider-Man Vol 2 #36 published in December 2001. The new tower constructed at One World Trade Center was completed in July 2013.
Because of the Sliding Timescale, all events published in "year one" of the Modern Age now happened about fourteen years in the past. The farthest back the Sliding timescale goes now is 2002. As such all references and depictions of the Twin Towers in the present tense should be considered topical references. Moving forward depictions of New York between the destruction of the original Twin Towers and the completion of One World Trade Center will be considered topical references during "Year Eighteen" of Marvel time around the year 2030. However readers should get into the habit of considering references to the terrorist attacks and subsequent reconstruction of the World Trade Center site as a topical reference now.
Example #3: Determining the passage of time pre-Modern Age
The Sliding timescale pushes forward the past lives of characters prior to the modern age forward in time as well. The best example of this is references to Mister Fantastic fighting in World War II as seen in Fantastic Four #11, yet Amazing Spider-Man #535 depict Reed as a child during the McCarthy Era of the 1950s. Both depictions should be considered topical references. One should ignore the era-specific references to any time a characters past is visited prior to the Modern Age.
However the passage of time from an instance in the "pre-modern age" to the modern age can be computed by determining the characters relative age in that pre-modern point in time to a point in the modern age.
Using this logic, we can determine the passage of time between Peter becoming an orphan and becoming Spider-Man can be easily determined:
When Peter gained his powers in Amazing Fantasy #15 he was fifteen years old. Peter was still an newborn when his parents were killed, as depicted in Amazing Spider-Man Annual #5. One can assume roughly 15 years had passed.
If "today" is 2016, Amazing Fantasy #15 (published in 1962) happened during "year one" of the modern age, or about fourteen years ago.
So by 2016's date, Peter gained his powers in the year 2002, and he was born sometime around 1987 or 1988.
When "year fifteen" draws to an end in October 2021, the time scale will have moved forward. The "present" will then considered 2021. Peter will have gotten his powers in 2006 and he would have been born around 1991 or 1992.
From the perspective of "today", if today is the year 2016, Peter was orphaned about 29 years ago, but when "today" is 2021, then he will have been orphaned around 30 years prior.
Often times there are flashbacks that apply the publication date to events that have happened in the past that are subject to the Sliding Timescale. For example All-New X-Men Annual #1 shows a scene where a trip through time ascribes the Fantastic Four's first battle with Galactus to the year 1966. This was the year of publication. This should be considered a homage to the original story's date of publication and not taken literally.
Another example is the dates on Adam Warlock's tombstone in Marvel Two-In-One Annual #2 and other publications that specify a specific date. In that story the dates of Warlock's life are documented as 1967 to 1977. These dates coincide with the publication dates between his first appearance and his (then current) death. These dates should be considered topical. When applying the Sliding Timescale Warlock would have been alive and active for two years.
In Ultimates Vol 2 #5, Galactus states that the time-space continuum is much more malleable than humans believe. The events that change history have a peculiar weight and are dragged in the wake of the present, positioning events that happened a long time ago merely a handful of years into the past.
Sorcerer Supreme or Sorceress Supreme is a title granted to the "practitioner of the mystic or magic arts who has greater skills than all others or commands a greater portion of the ambient magical energies than any other organism on a given world or "dimension". By definition, there can be at most two Sorcerer Supremes per world at a time: there will be two Sorcerers Supreme if one of them has greater skills than all others while the other commands a greater portion of the ambient magical energies than any other; there will be no Sorcerer Supreme if there is a tie between two organisms in terms of their above-mentioned skills or abilities; and there will be one Sorcerer/ess Supreme if the same organism both has greater skills than all others and commands a greater portion of the ambient magical energies than any other.
Prime Marvel Universe Earth
Agamotto, circa 1,000,000 BCE and 18,000 BCE to 15,000 BCE
Zhered-Na, circa 19,000 BCE
Varnae, the Lord of the Vampires before Dracula rose to power, was once summoned to the Assemblage of Avatars, a gathering of the most powerful users of magic existent on Earth at the time, including the then-Sorceress Supreme Zhered-Na, by the first Sorcerer Supreme Agamotto to seek a solution for the conflicts between the Elder Gods, but little was achieved during the meeting and Agamotto himself grew frustrated by the limitations of humanity. One time while battling Doctor Strange, he claimed that he once sought the title of Sorcerer Supreme before he became a vampire.
Shamhat of Akah Ma'at, circa 15,000 BCE to 11,000 BCE
Ayesha, circa 10,000 BCE to 6000 BCE
When a battle between all of Earth's mightiest mages was held to determine the next Sorcerer Supreme, the priestess Ayesha, the Rain Queen of Balobedu emerged as the champion. Ayesha is believed to be the ancient ancestor of Ashake and Ororo Munroe.
Hermes Trismegistus, circa 6000 BCE to 3000 BCE
Aged Genghis, circa 3000 BCE
Granted power and wisdom from the Vishanti, the ancient wizard known as Aged Genghis served for a time as the Sorcerer Supreme. Aged Genghis has also maintained other duties such as judging the contest of Earth's most powerful magic users to determine who can hold the title of Sorcerer Supreme.
Zoroaster, circa 1800 BCE to 1300 BCE
Salomé, circa 1300 to 1100 BCE
Following the demon Zarathos's defeat some twenty-five millennia ago by the supernatural Blood, some among them worshiped him as the Fallen. Salomé, possibly the ancestor of the namesake of the millennia-old line of sorceresses of the same name, was among the Fallen's most powerful members, and around the thirteenth century BCE she became Sorceress Supreme, by her account the first denizen of the Earth to do so. She presumably protected the Earth dimension from various threats, but her ego demanded worship as a goddess, which she received in the Assyrian city of Nimrud. Eventually, Salomé and her fellow Fallen were banished to another dimension, while the Sorcerer Supreme role apparently fell to a sorcerer on another planet within Earth's universe, though eventually, the responsibility fell again on the burdens of the mystics of Earth.
King Solomon, circa 1100 BCE to 800 BCE
Queen of Sheba, circa 800 BCE to 550 BCE
The Triumvirate, circa 550 BCE to 400 BCE
In 550 BCE, a group of three Greek philosopher sorcerers, Thales the Milesian, Pythagoras of Samos, and Pherecydes of Syros, jointly held the position of Sorcerer Supreme as The Triumvirate. Pythagoras was eventually replaced by Empedocles of Agrigentum and Thales was replaced by Epimenides of Knossos.
Caius of Lacedaemons, circa 400 BCE to 100 BCE
Zhang Jiao, circa 100 CE
Merlin, circa 500 CE
Makeen, circa 616 CE
Another past African Sorcerer Supreme, Makeen, was shown accompanying former Houngan Supreme, Legba, in the "six hundredth and sixteenth Age of Man" (apparently 616 CE) to prevent the Voodoo god Ogoun from invading the Earthly plane, eventually sacrificing their "living souls" to seal the gateways and turning their physical forms into statues which stand to this day; the Eye of Agamotto and Cloak of Levitation then together left Makeen for their next master, the new Sorcerer Supreme.
15th to early 20th centuries
According to Doctor Strange, the demonic, tentacled Marrakant Hellguard, resistant to Strange's magic, has incinerated every other Sorcerer Supreme since the 1500s (though apparently before the Ancient One's time holding the office) that has confronted it, only to be slain by Strange using Hitler's Handgun, designed to be effective in disposing of mystically-powered opponents.
Ancient One, circa 1450s
Hiram Shaw, circa 1690s
Isaac Newton, circa 1700s
Demon Rider, circa mid to late 1800s
Kushala the Demon Rider was an Apache woman possessed by Spirit of Vengeance after the massacre of her people. Following her possession, she searched the world learning different magical forms and eventually became the Sorcerer Supreme.
Nina the Conjuror, circa 1950s
The mysterious woman only known as Nina the Conjurer was trained in magic by her brother, João. Around the mid-20th century, she won the title of Sorcerer Supreme while enhancing her magical abilities while searching for her brother who was imprisoned by Merlin.
During the Dark Reign, a new Sorcerer Supreme was chosen. Possible candidates included: Brother Voodoo, Doctor Doom, The Hood, Nico Minoru, Magik, the Ghost Rider, Wiccan, Druid (the son of the late mystic Doctor Druid), Baron Mordo, Ian McNee and Scarlet Witch (or possibly the Asgardian Loki in her guise), Storm, Clea, Spiral, Selene, Agatha Harkness (unclear whether deceased or still living), and even Dormammu. Though Daimon Hellstrom and Jennifer Kale were both deemed suitable candidates, it appeared that they were not destined to hold the title, and instead united to confront a threat so deadly it is worthy of a Sorcerer Supreme to handle. Marvel has described the candidates on its own official website, (as well as in interviews), as well as stating the pros and cons of each one. Clea is said by Marvel to be the most likely candidate thus far for the role of Sorceress Supreme of the Marvel Universe, with the odds of 5-1. Formerly, during the Trial of the Vishanti, Khalid Inshallah, Jules St. Thomas, "Screamer," Sen-Yu, Tareva, and Wai Chee Yee, along with at least four other unnamed mystics were also deemed worthy candidates for the office, chosen as most learned in the ways of sorcery by the Aged Genghis.
Recently, however, having failed in his duties, Strange no longer held the title, having decided to pass on his duties for another of a purer heart. Jericho Drumm was the Sorcerer Supreme, despite his lacking in knowledge of outer fields of magic beyond his own, due to his soul being the most pure and deserving, appointed the title by the joint choice of the Vishanti and the Ancient One.
A new Sorcerer Supreme was chosen after the Eye of Agamotto automatically displayed to Strange and the New Avengers through its arcane powers in the Quinjet at least thirty-five images of "those who would replace" Strange, suspended in floating and shimmering blue bubbles of light, before the Eye itself vanishes from Strange. At the end, after Dormammu, the Hood, and their forces work to attack the New Avengers, the Son of Satan, and Doctor Strange, the new Sorcerer Supreme of the Marvel Universe was revealed at last to apparently be Brother Voodoo, the Haitian Houngan Supreme who has worked with Strange in the past, who now bears the Eye as a symbol of his new position and intervenes with a potent display of his own firepower. The title was returned to Doctor Strange after Drumm's (temporary) death.
Loki became the Sorcerer Supreme after having been granted the title by the Vishanti after a tournament, despite not participating in the tournament, let alone winning it. The Vishanti said that "It has been decided that a mortal can no longer fulfill the role of Sorcerer Supreme" due to an unspecified looming threat and that they sensed in Loki a desire to be better, "Restraint. Regret. Atonement." They were also displeased with the previous title holder and tournament winner Doctor Strange.
This was later revealed to be an elaborate illusion orchestrated by Loki to become Sorcerer Supreme who believed that Strange wasn't ready to for the looming threats that were going to endanger the Earth. After feuding with Strange and forced to work together with him to subdue the Void, Loki gave Strange back his position as Sorcerer Supreme.
- The Sorceress Supreme of the Dark Dimension, the realm to which Dormammu had been banished, is Clea, disciple and lover of Doctor Strange.
- The current Sorceress Supreme of the demonic Limbo is the mutant Magik (Illyana Rasputin).
- The Sorcerer Supreme of the Purple Dimension, a less well-known pocket realm based in old Doctor Strange stories, where green-skinned humanoids abduct humans as slaves, is Agganon.
- The Sorceress Supreme of the Winding Road (and former Sorceress Supreme of Earth) is Margali Szardos, a sorceress with power enough to proclaim herself as the Sorceress Supreme.
- Tiboro is the Sorcerer Supreme of the Sixth Dimension, and owns a strangely-shaped wand that fires an ectoplasmic ray, powered by lightning.
- Shanzar is the Sorcerer Supreme of the Strange Matter dimension, a mystic realm visited by Doctor Strange.
During the magic-hunting crusade of the Empirikul, Doctor Strange stated (in presence of Magik (Illyana Rasputin)) he buried seventeen Sorcerers Supreme, and that after spelling a call to all the Sorcerers Supreme, no one answered the call.
Selection and Succession
As has been stated many times by various characters, there cannot be any permanent Sorcerer or Sorceress Supreme of a dimension/reality; eventually, the office would pass on to another, with one's will or without. However, one could be a master of the mystic arts (such as Baron Mordo or Morgan le Fay) and not hold the title. Each existent reality of the Marvel Multiverse appears to be defended by a Sorcerer or Sorceress Supreme, though certain dimensions linked to each reality does not (such as Asgard or Olympus). Urthona was the Sorcerer Supreme of his home planet Gevaltu within the Earth-616 dimension, but sought to become the Sorcerer Supreme of the entire universe by overpowering the one that had currently held that position, Doctor Strange, though his efforts eventually failed.
It appears possible that holders of the position of Sorcerer or Sorceress Supreme in other universes or dimensional planes are capable of becoming candidates for the Marvel Universe's. Dormammu has also claimed destroying the most recent Sorcerer Supreme would grant the killer the title in his stead. The Eye of Agamotto, along with other magical objects, are not automatically removed or given to the new Sorcerer Supreme or candidates even after the former one has fallen from the station. The Sorcerer Supreme can also "surrender," "lose" or "bestow" his position upon others of worthiness (as well as inheriting it from the former Sorcerer Supreme), though is also capable of taking it back multiple times after such a loss, as Strange has done various times in the past. Taking back the office has also been accomplished by Salomé of the Fallen, even without a contest between the universe's major mages of power. One can become a Sorcerer Supreme against one's will, as shown in a divergent reality of Earth-938, as done to Stephen Strange by the dying Doctor Doom, though conventionally and under normal circumstances, one must first consent to accept the challenge and the responsibilities coming with the station, as voiced by the Ancient One and Agamotto through the Eye. Religion also does not appear to be a significant factor in the determination of the role of Sorcerer Supreme, as made evident when Brother Voodoo, of the Haitian faith, was chosen by the arcane deity Agamotto through his Eye and the spirit of the Ancient One, despite Drumm's worship of the Loas; in fact, the presence of Voodoo's spirit brother also appeared to be included in this responsibility, instead of a hindrance in the selection. Once, on Earth-148, the Sorcerer Supreme Necrom, while holding values opposite to those of most other Sorcerers Supreme, even worked with the dark arts, including necromancy, apparently indicating not all Sorcerers Supreme throughout the Marvel Multiverse must be pure in order to hold the title. There is also some kind of sign, test or initiation one must survive (though survival is not guaranteed, even if one is chosen for the office) to truly take up the mantle of Sorcerer Supreme. It is possible for even moderately-proficient mages to steal the magical powers of a Sorcerer Supreme against his will, as Nicodemus did to Doctor Strange; however, one must also possess considerable mental discipline as the Sorcerer Supreme, or else one would be overwhelmed by the sheer power and vast mystical awareness that belonged to the office-holder. Never before has the Houngan Supreme of Haiti served as the Sorcerer Supreme before Jericho Drumm.
The Vishanti are apparently the ones who select the current Sorcerer Supreme of the Marvel Universe, as it was they who gave great magical power to the Aged Genghis shortly after humanity's dawn in return for his summoning together the greatest mystics in the world every century for a tournament to determine the Sorcerer Supreme, affirmed by the Vishanti themselves. The Vishanti were also the ones who stripped Strange of the Sorcerer Supreme title in the past and, while finding her repulsive, made Salomé Sorceress Supreme once again. Strange competed against a dozen others, including Doctor Doom, to retain his own position, and ultimately triumphed. The Vishanti have rarely been called upon for power by those other than the Sorcerers Supreme Doctor Strange and the Ancient One, and, on one instance, Clea, Strange's disciple. When Mockingbird asked Doctor Strange whether a "bad" person (or, as Strange says, one who abuses their magic for personal gain), by the context of their society, could possibly obtain the office, Strange replied that, "Good, bad, they have no real meaning here...not in this context."
The new Sorcerer Supreme has been shown to be benevolent in nature, as Dormammu has mentioned to the Hood that the spells of Earth's Sorcerer Supreme bar him from entering their plane, thus confirming neither the Hood nor Dormammu received the title; as Strange lost both the title and the power to maintain or work such spells long before the Reign, this refers to the new Sorcerer Supreme. However, the new Sorcerer Supreme still has "a lot to learn" and must learn what he requires from Spider-Man, ruling out Doom, Mordo, Loki, Harkness or Clea as the new Sorcerer Supreme.
The Sorcerer or Sorceress Supreme is functionally immortal, having the immortality conferred upon him or her after their ascension. Such a being with the role does not age nor succumb to medical diseases after a trial with Death, which you are forbidden to fight evoking the power of the Vishanti, (in which one does not truly destroy Death itself, but truly accepts one's own mortality), though he can be killed; the Sorcerer or Sorceress Supreme has access to the near-unlimited power of the Vishanti, the Octessence, and various other Principalities, as well as granted possession of such powerful mystic items ("gifts") as the Eye of Agamotto, Orb of Agamotto, Wand of Watoomb and the Cloak of Levitation, along with "books of knowledge" to help the Sorcerer Supreme train for his or her quests, such as the Book of the Vishanti.
Servants of the Sorcerers Supreme
There exists an ancient line of humans trained to serve the current Sorcerer or Sorceress Supreme of many of the realities in the Marvel Universe; Wong served Doctor Stephen Strange, Sorcerer Supreme of the Earth-616 reality, for years before Strange failed at long last in his duties as his dimension’s protector and lost the station; other Wongs exist in other parallel and alternate universes as well.
- The term "Sorcerer Supreme" for Earth's supreme mystic protector was stated to allegedly not having been used from the beginning, though Agamotto was seen using it one million years ago.
- According to Ian McNee, there is conflicting information, with evidence to support both theories, as to whether the Sorcerer Supreme is appointed to protect Earth, or all of Earth dimension. McNee wondered whether or not there is a Sorcerer Supreme for each solar system (or area of these solar systems). Despite numerous statements that the Sorcerer Supreme is only to defend one world, his duty is actually to the whole of the dimension of the world is within; Doctor Strange was the Sorcerer Supreme of the Marvel Universe, yet was often, erroneously, called only "Earth's Sorcerer Supreme". While it is certainly possible to have more than just one master of the mystic arts in one dimension, only one of them can hold the title Sorcerer Supreme at a time. More supporting evidence of this can be given by the fact there is no other known Sorcerer Supreme on any of the planets not of Earth; for example, there are at least tens of thousands of alien worlds in the Marvel Universe, many known to have potent mystics, yet none were called the Sorcerer Supreme. Furthermore, the Stranger, while describing the high potential, power, and uniqueness of Earth stated "the Sorcerer Supreme makes his home there", and when Strange was captured once during the days of the Defenders, Strange was said to be the Sorcerer Supreme of their "cosmos", implying that the Sorcerer Supreme is not limited to his home planet, but the entire universe he resides in, though a defender of one world out of millions would be negligible to one of the most powerful cosmic entities in existence.
- Avengers Vol 8 #1
- Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #18
- Vampires: The Marvel Undead #1; Varnae's entry
- Marvel Zombies: The Book of Angels, Demons & Various Monstrosities #1; Angels' entry
- Marvel Tarot #1
- Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #7
- Marvel Universe App: Saraswati
- Marvel. Marvel Universe App: Succession of the Sorcerer Supreme. Marvel Universe App. Retrieved on 4 June 2020.
- Doom 2099 #13
- Doctor Strange and the Sorcerers Supreme #1
- Doctor Voodoo: Avenger of the Supernatural #3
- Doctor Strange: The Oath #4
- X-Men: Hellfire Club #1
- Doctor Strange and the Sorcerers Supreme #1-5
- Doctor Strange and the Sorcerers Supreme #3
- War of the Realms: Journey into Mystery #4
- Doctor Strange and the Sorcerers Supreme #4
- New Avengers #53-60
- New Avengers #54
- New Avengers Vol 2 #34
- Doctor Strange #385
- Doctor Strange Vol 4 #4
- New Avengers #52-54
- New Avengers #53
- Marvel Zombies 4 #2
- New Avengers #55
- Marvel Tarot #1; Sorcerer Supremes
- Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #3; Angels' profile
- Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #7; Magic - History of the Sorcerer Supreme
- Doctor Strange: The End #1
- Sorcerers Supreme:
- Scientist Supreme
A natural or artificially created nexus leading from one point in space through hyperspace into another point in space. Also called a stargate.
(See Also: Hyperspace and Nexus)
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Poles, (wooden or otherwise), sharpened to a point or with sharp rocks on the ends.
A spoiler is any piece of information that reveals plot elements which some people may wish to remain unrevealed so that they may enjoy the source material to its fullest extent, without having any previous knowledge of the outcome. Some examples of spoilers would be the death of a major character or an unexpected plot twist.
A Story Arc is typically one or more consecutive comic book issues which define a story with a beginning, middle and end. One or more Story Arcs may or may not make up a Storyline.
For our collection of currently added Story Arcs, please see Story Arcs and Story Arc Categories
(See Also: Storyline)
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A Storyline is typically several comic book issues that cover a long story. They are typically made up of one or more Story Arcs, and often cover the prelude to an event, the event itself, and the post-event epilogue.
(See Also: Story Arc, Event)
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The ability to stretch your body far above the length you normally could. The user is or can become extremely malleable and elastic, allowing them to stretch, flatten, deform, expand, and contract their whole body, including limbs, torso, neck, etc. They can control how elastic/flexible they or parts of them are, allowing user to change their bodies into various tools or other constructs. They are extremely hard to wound or hurt due to their body reflexively absorbing damage by stretching with attacks, but may still feel pain.
People with this super power:
Skrull Infiltration Ritual
The Skrull Infiltration Ritual was a mixture of science and magic that imbued the Skrull with the powers and memories of the selected subject from multiple templates, effectively turning those who underwent the rite of passage into a Super Skrull.
This allowed the Skrull subject to go undetected in human form by Iron Man's technological scans, Charles Xavier's mental scans, Spider-Man's Spider-Sense, Wolverine's animal senses, or any other conceivable forms of detection. So subtle and powerful is this form of concealment neither Doctor Strange can detect the Skrull with the Spell of Tartashi, nor could the Elder God-powered Scarlet Witch using Xavier's psychic powers delve past the memory blocks.
The Subterraneans consist of various races, each created by the Deviants and living under the surface of the Earth. They were created as slaves but when their masters left they were free to form their own society. Mole-Man became the leader of the land when he made Subterranea his home.
The Subterranean Races
- Gortokians - (extinct) , first slave race created by the Deviants. They rebelled and formed their own society. The civilization was wiped by the first Atomic tests performed by the humans.
- Lava Men - Some of the Gortokians worshipped the demon and were transformed into Lava creatures.
- Moloids - is the second race created by the Deviants as slaves. When the Deviants left them they were split into two groups:
- Lizard Men
- Deviant Mutates
A superhero is a character who is noted for feats of courage and nobility and who usually has a colorful name and costume which serve to conceal their true identity, and abilities beyond those of normal human beings. A female superhero is sometimes called a superheroine, although this term has fallen out of favor in the modern era.
The word superhero originated with Superman, who debuted in 1938, and the stories of superheroes - ranging from episodic adventures to decades-long sagas - have become an entire genre of fiction that has dominated American comic books and crossed over into several other media.
Supersoldier is a term often used to describe a soldier that operates beyond normal physical and mental limits of humanity. Super soldiers are common in comic books.
Super soldiers are usually heavily augmented, either through genetic engineering, cybernetic implants, drugs, brainwashing, an extreme training regimen (usually with high casualty rates, and starting from birth), or other scientific means or a combination of any of those. Occasionally, some instances also use paranormal methods, such as black magic. The creators of such programs are viewed often as mad scientists or stern military men, depending on the emphasis, as their programs will typically go past ethical boundaries in the pursuit of science/ military might.
- Captain America was to be the first of a line of super-soldiers, a plan that was ruined when Dr. Abraham Erskine, the creator of the Super-Soldier serum was killed. Other characters in the Marvel Universe, such as Wolverine (Weapon X) and X-23 are continuations of those experiments.
Similarly, the Kree Empire has attempted to created "super-soldiers" of their own, including Captain Glory (Gla-Ree) (gene-modded to not feel any guilt on the field), and Shatterstar (Arides) (the prototype of super-soldiers developed using photometric sciences).
Please find a list of Kree Super-Soldiers here.
In Marvel Comics the term superhuman is part of a "power classification system" and applies to aptitude (usually physical) far beyond the range attainable by normal human beings. An athlete is a normal human in extraordinary physical condition, such as a weight lifter or boxer. Peak human is applied to physical abilities that are nearly, but not quite, beyond the limits of the best of humans. Enhanced human refers to superhuman abilities some distance beyond the limits of humans, such as being able to lift a small car but not a tank, and is a kind of term for "light" superhuman abilities. Then comes the term superhuman. Characters with a superhuman attribute are far beyond normal human abilities. There is also a range beyond superhuman and this is metahuman. As the enhanced human level is really just a term for a low superhuman ability, metahuman is a term for a high superhuman ability.
Marvel A-Z OHOTMU Stat reference sheet distinguishes between the different categories of superhuman attributes and powers:
Referring to a skill, ability, or power that is outside the parameters of achievement by ordinary humanoid beings. It is also a term used for any humanoid being who possesses such a skill, ability, or power.
A supervillain is a variant of the villain character type, commonly found in comic books. Supervillains concoct complex and ambitious schemes to accumulate power and suppress adversaries. They often have colorful names and costumes and/or other eccentricities. Female supervillains are sometimes known as supervillainesses.
Supervillains are often used as foils to superheroes and other fictional heroes. Their extraordinary brainpower and/or superhuman abilities make them viable antagonists for the most gifted heroes.
Suspended animation or "Cryostasis" is the slowing of life processes by external means without termination. Breathing, heartbeat, and other involuntary functions may still occur, but they can only be detected by artificial means. Extreme cold is used to precipitate the slowing of an individual's functions
- Captain America fell into the Arctic Ocean at the end of World War II and was miraculously preserved until the present day. His survival was attributed to the Super-Soldier Serum coursing through his veins.
- Winter Soldier, he also fell into the Arctic Ocean and was recovered by the Soviet Union. While he was clinically dead when they recovered him, because the freezing water preserved his body at or near death, they succeeded in resuscitating him. They subsequently brainwashed him into being their assassin, the Winter Soldier, and started freezing him between missions in the 1950's, both to keep him under control and to preserve his youth and strength for future missions.
- William Burnside and Jack Monroe, the Cap and Bucky of the 50's. Jack later went on to become the hero Nomad after being unfrozen, and was even the real Captain America's partner for a little while. Nomad was placed back into suspended animation years later.
- Vance Astro spent 1,000 years in suspended animation for a slower-than-light trip to Alpha Centauri. Only to find Earth had invented hyperdrive and beaten him there by several centuries. The long time he spent in the tube had preserved his body, he needed a full-body suit to prevent his body from being exposed to the elements and aging 1000 years.
- Iron Man after suffering massive neurological damage, Tony faked his death and preserved his body via cryogenics.
- Omega Red, who was cryogenically frozen after his superiors decided he was too dangerous to control.
- Frankenstein Monster was twice found encased in ice, first in 1898 and then 1970s which leads to his introduction to the modern times.
Called the Supreme Power by Hyperstorm, that ability is the power to manipulate the four fundamental forces of the universe (gravitation, electromagnetic, strong, and weak forces) that come from hyperspace.
This power allows its wielder to perform a variety of feats including vast energy and matter manipulation.
(See Also: Glossary:Hyperspace)
A Synthozoid, or Synthezoid, is special type of android, also known as a "synthetic humanoid" robot. They are empowered by synthesizing solar energy and are replicas of the human body, containing analogues to virtually all human organs, brain, blood, and tissue, composed of a synthetic organic-like substance, Horton Cells. This substance mimics all the functions of human tissue, but is several times as strong, durable and resilient.
In the 1930s, Dr. Phineas Horton developed a material he dubbed as the Horton Cells, with the ability to replicate the functions of human cells, and used them create a synthetic man. However, his creation reacted to oxygen during its presentation during the 1939 World's Fair, and burst into flames. As the synthetic man was deemed a failure, Horton was forced to bury it in concrete. However, the synthetic man escaped, and became the first Human Torch, aka Jim Hammond, which is regarded as the wold's first fully functional android.
James Bradley, who was involved in the original project but did not receive any credit for it, later created his own Synthezoid; Volton, eventually fighting against the Invaders as a member of the Battle-Axis.
Baron Zemo also created his own army of Inhuman Torches, by capturing the Human Torch and dissecting him to copy his artificial DNA. The Invaders were attacked by them, but they were aided by the time travelling Thunderbolts, who trapped the synthezoids under a snowfall and tore them apart.
Nazi scientist Dr. Sigmund Fell escaped to Bolivia after the war and sought to create a secret society androids, known as New Berlin. Due to the flaw that the synthezoids would burst into flames when exposed to aire, the androids were confined to a sealed city with specially treated air to prevent the combustion. The androids themselves believed to live in the actual Berlin, where Nazis won the war and ruled the world. Fell recruited the Mad Thinker to help with the creation of the “Inhuman Torch”, and was ultimately revealed he ignored he was an android too.
The Soviet Union attempted to create its own version of a Synthezoid. The main scientist behind the project was radically transformed by the alien technology hew was working with, and became a new entity of synthetic matter, who decided to no longer answer to his previous identity, becoming Vostok.
Ultron created his own synthezoid using a temportal duplicate of the Human Torch as template, modifying the cells to stop the reaction with oxygen, and also making them able to alter their density. He named his creation "Vision".
Bio-Synthezoids from Robotopia
Alkhema created the Bio-Synthezoids using a "Plastoid Birthmatrix" in Al-Luxor, Egypt, dubbing the place Robotopia. Given that she was following Ultron's programming to build them as his new army, their first action was to rebuild Ultron. The Avengers destroyed that facility but one of the Bio-Synthezoids, Antigone, escaped with Ultron's head, remaining hidden until the Avengers left.
Vision later created a "Synthezoid Family" in hopes to humanize himself. He started with a wife named Virginia and then combined their brainwaves to create their twin children; Vin and Viv. He later even created a canine Synthezoid named Sparky as a pet for the family.
The United States Government attempted to recreate Dr. Horton's work and developed their own Synthezoid, dubbing it a "Eve-series synthetic humanoid". Deriving it from the original Human Torch. She was code named Invader-1; but preferred to be known as Tara. She was placed on the newly-formed team of New Invaders, and due to her lack of control she was given a special containment chamber when not on a mission.
Weapon Plus developed Project Descendant to create replicas of the original Human Torch. Three scientists, known just as Father, Mother and Brother, resorted to magic and used the Orb of Necromancy to animate their best twenty failed androids as functional synthezoid "High-Breeds", potentially the first of a new android species.
The trio fell to arguing about what to do with them, and the synthezoids ended up being released into the wild. Father eventually created an underground city of robotic intelligences, in order to lure the descendants of the High-Breeds.
- Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #2; Glossary
- Marvel Comics #1
- Invaders Vol 2 #1
- What If? #4
- Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty #3-4
- Thunderbolts #164-165
- Torch #5-6
- Avengers Vol 8 #10
- Soviet Super Soldiers #1
- Avengers #57
- Avengers: The Ultron Imperative #1
- Vision Vol 2 #1
- Vision Vol 2 #6
- Avengers Vol 3 #83
- Uncanny Avengers Vol 2 #1
- Secret Avengers #22
- War of the Realms: New Agents of Atlas #4