The Celestials are a species of spacefaring godlike anthropomorphic aliens with unconceivable cosmic power that are known to visit several worlds, in successive waves called "Hosts", to perform genetic experiments with local lifeforms, in ways that considerably altered the course of later events. In the process, they tend to generate divergent offshoots of a dominant native species, including powerful, long-lived Eternals; genetically unstable, grotesque Deviants; and dormant alterations for mutations in the bulk of the population. Celestials are known to be responsible, amongst several species they affected, for the shapeshifting Skrulls, where the Deviant population became dominant. The perennial Celestials return to the worlds they affected millions of years later, to check the results of their genetic manipulation, and to discern whether their experiments have become a threat to the universe; commonly, the Celestials decide that these worlds are to be destroyed.
There are several factions among the Celestials. Jemiah belongs to the Prime Celestial Host, considered the most powerful among those.
Earth's First and Second Hosts
The Celestials visited Earth circa one million years ago, to start genetic tests and experiments in the human being's ancestor, having discarded other local candidates. As the hominid genetics was adaptable enough, the Celestials successfully created two subspecies, local Eternals and Deviants, and also included a latent DNA complex that would eventually allow the evolution of benign alterations, giving birth to the mutants. Jemiah was present in the First Host, interacting with local lifeforms within the atmosphere.
The First Host also distributed mysterious Monoliths that would appear to local lifeforms to alter them, mutating them into higher beings and helping them reach their fullest potential. These Monoliths blasted off to space once their mission was complete or when they were threatened.
The Second Host visited Earth some twenty-five thousand years ago, to check the results of their first visit. Unhappy with the leading civilizations, they destroyed most of them, forcing the survivors to try alternative developments. Jemiah was a member of the Second Host.
Earth's Third Host
Ten Celestials, among them Jemiah, returned to Earth in a spaceship in the Third Host around 1,000 AD to inspect the progress of mankind. Landing in Pre-Columbian Peru, the Celestials were received by native Inca civilization, who superstitiously worshipped them as the Space Gods. The Eternals built their landing site and collaborated with the Inca so that the later would erect pyramids and citadel for the Celestials in the Andes Mountains. This would later become the headquarters of the Fourth Host.
Odin, head of the Norse pantheon of Earth, had known of the upcoming spaceship and of the aliens who would decide whether Earth was worthy of existence. Enraged at the intrusion in his domain, and fearing for his own existence and that of his subjects, Odin chose to confront the Celestials; but, understanding their power, Odin allied with leaders of other Earth pantheons in the Council of Godheads, explaining the common threat.
Odin went to Peru with two other Godheads, Vishnu of the Hindu Gods and Zeus of the Olympians, challenging the Celestials' right to interfere on Earth matters. With the Eternal Ajak as an intermediary, Third Host leader Arishem the Judge threatened to cut communication between their god realms and Earth, unless the Earth gods themselves agree to retire and stop interfering with humans for a millennium. The intimidated gods symbolically knelt before Arishem, while Jemiah flew behind him, busy with his activities. Odin nonetheless started a convoluted scheme against the Celestials that would germinate a thousand years later, building weapons including the Oversword of Asgard and the enchanted armor Destroyer.
At some point, Jemiah was known to have written the Fractal Scriptures of Jemiah the Analyzer, a document also known as Jemiah the Analyzer's Fractal Scriptures that the Eternals consider the written word of the Celestials. This text was almost indecipherable, and only the Eternal Ajak succeeded in doing so, in what was deemed a great achievement. Its verse 1.23 x 10" detailed how the Skrulls do not only conquer species, but also deprive them of their gods, retaining idols of conquered religions far from their worshipers, only in the chapels and shrines of the Skrull gods, so that only the Skrulls remember them, rendering them hollow and powerless. The text specifically mentioned several of these defeated deities, including the Blessed-of-Litters, former god of the Druffs; Ceffyad the Righteous, former god of the Idoidea Swarm Collective; and Hadith, Omen-Maker, Path-Lighter, former god of the Queegas.
Earth's Fourth Host
The Fourth Host came to Earth in recent times, after the mutations the Celestials had induced in their First Host had began to appear due to increased environment radiation. Jemiah was among the at least nine Celestials that were part of the Fourth Host, led by Arishem on Earth and by One Above All from the huge mothership. It was their plan to analyze humanity for a maximum of fifty years from their Peruvian base built in the Third Host. The so-called City of the Space Gods would be isolated from outer environment thanks to the Celestials powers, although the Celestials themselves could enter and leave at will. The Eternals were eager to help the Celestials, while the Deviants defied them. The Pentagon and later S.H.I.E.L.D. found the situation potentially threatening and considered both field investigation or military response, but were unable to enter the area.
Archaeologist Daniel Damian, who had befriended the Eternals, willingly decided to stay in the City before it was closed, so he could devote his life to study the Celestials, along with the Eternal Ajak. Damian had a chance to photograph the huge Jemiah and to witness how another Celestial, Gammenon the Gatherer, arrived with a rod of "life-seed" capsules -concentrated local life beings reduced to its component atoms- and delivered them to Jemiah so that the later would analyze them. Jemiah retired while Ajak explained this to Damian, and Gammenon offered Ajak another sample of "life-seed" - several SHIELD agents whom Ajak restored. The SHIELD agents listened to Damian and Ajak's explanations, but nonetheless decided to interfere thrown a nuclear device to nearby celestial Tefral the Surveyor. The explosive went off, harmlessly impacting on Tefral. Jemiah approached Tefral, collecting all the available information to understand the conveyed message: The humans are technically advanced, but they react with fear.
Soon afterward, the Host reunited in the same place, with Jemiah to Tefral's right. One Above All, from the ship, sent a message that looked like a laser beam fire-like surrounding the Celestials with white energy. All the Celestials in the landing party but Arishem disappeared, having transformed in a blinding flash into a basic form of matter. Ajak explained that these Celestials were everywhere on Earth at once. They were later restored to their usual physical form.
Three years after the landing of the Fourth Host, Gammenon single-handedly captured a commercial airplane near the City and brought it in, for Jemiah to analyze it. Jemiah was busy at that point, allowing the plane's passengers and crew to leave it - one of them being Thor, Norse warrior god of thunder and Odin's son.
Odin launched his attack, feeding the enchanted armor Destroyer with the life-force of most Asgardians and with part of the power of other Godheads. Odin himself controlled the armor, with the consent of the Godheads, and wielded the Oversword, having become a two-thousand-feet tall warrior to confront the Celestials. The Eternals combined as the Uni-Mind to support Odin in his campaign. Both Uni-Mind and Destroyer reached the City in the Andes, and found nine Celestials waiting for them. Odin challenged them. Gammenon and Jemiah answered by unleashing latent energies in twin energy blasts that Odin thought was directed to him - but they aimed at the Uni-Mind. The effect of the bolt deluded the Uni-Mind in their component Eternals, who fell unconscious.
Odin maimed a Celestial, Nezarr the Calculator, but Nezzar re-generated the lost beam. Odin then tried disintegrator beams, but he was stopped and toppled by casually-moving Celestials. Thor, arriving at that point, helped his father by summoning a powerful storm. However, at that point, most of the Celestials were simply still, not even watching as a couple of their brethren -Tefral and Ziran- disarmed the Destroyer and defeated Odin. The Celestials then waited for their leader Arishem to decide the following action and, at the later's ruling, all the Celestials shot energy from their hands, destroying the Destroyer in a matter of seconds, reducing the armor to metal scoria and sending the Asgardian souls within it to wander far from their bodies. The other Godheads, monitoring the fight, understood that their plan had failed. Thor, believing his father to be lost, attacked two Celestials - Hargen the Measurer and Oneg the Prober, only to be easily repelled. Ambitiously, Thor tumbled Arishem and attacked him with the Oversword, but failed to harm him - and Arishem even melted the sword. The Celestials' enemies had been defeated.
Before Arishem destroyed Thor, thou, Mother Goddess Gaea and several other goddesses appeared with an offering for the Celestials: Twelve young mortals who represented the highest achievements and ideals of the human race, for the Celestials to learn from and vice versa. Arishem, satisfied with this, deemed that humanity was worthy of its existence. It is the only known case of the Celestials deciding in favor of a world at this stage. The Celestials surrounded these young people, later self-proclaimed the Young Gods, and levitated with them to leave Earth in the mothership. When leaving Earth, the Celestials decided to erase every memory and record of their presence there, so that only a reduced number of Earthly beings (Deviants, Eternals, gods and very few humans) would know of their visits. Thor collected some power from other pantheons to revive Odin, who in turn resurrected the Asgardians.
The Young Gods, in the mothership, were initially awed by the sheer presence of the Celestials. However, in time, they became disturbed by the Celestials' apparent indifference to them, no matter the Young Gods' actions. The Young Gods decided that the Celestials disregarded them as sheer tokens and, unable to attract the Celestials' attention, they assumed a quest that, in their mind, the Celestials wanted for them: They went to Earth to "show the right way" to the local lifeforms, aiming to combine the life essences of Deviants, Eternals and humans in a single Uni-mind which, donning an armor, would become a new Celestial. When they eventually reached Earth and tried that, some time later, they were stopped by the Eternals.
At a later point, the Elders of the Universe were involved in an ambitious plan to defeat Death herself, then Galactus and lastly Eternity, embodiment of reality, so that the universe would be destroyed to give place to a new universe where the Elders would be even more powerful. Eternity discovered this plan and was opposed to it, but he seldom acted as an individual. Instead, Eternity meditated on the idea of continuity, and his thought prompted the Celestials to show interest on the Skrull empire, to unleash the succession of events that Eternity wished for.
Following Eternity's silent push, Jemiah turned up on the planet Tarakar, seat of Emperor Kylor of the Skrulls. The imposing figure of Jemiah bent his head on the Skrull city, being first identified by Kylor's aide Ripan. At that point, the Skrulls had lost their shapeshifting ability, which flustered them as a race. The emperor nonetheless decided to take action: He prepared a military attack with at least thirty-five atmospheric ships against Jemiah, but he first would try direct diplomacy to learn the Celestials' plans, from a hovering platform, with a pilot and an adjutant on tow. Kylor talked to Jemiah, trying to impress him with the Skrulls' intelligence, knowledge, and achievements, stressing their victories against their Eternals, so-called Latents and other local Deviants. Jemiah's foreseeable silence was understood by Kylor as an invitation to keep on talking, and the Skrull emperor admitted a number of past defeats, but then insisted on their expansion plans to take over the Kree Empire and to overcome their genetic loss. As Jemiah spoke nil, Kylor loss his patience, damned the Celestial and unleashed the attack. All the military power of the Skrull emperor was incapable of causing a single effect on Jemiah.
As Eternity had anticipated, the Skrulls succumbed to panic and immediately began an open war against the Kree, a war that threatened Silver Surfer's native world Zenn-La, involving the Surfer against the Kree and leading the Surfer to recover the Kree-owned Soul Gem, preventing the Elders from using it against Surfer's on-off ally Galactus, and eventually saving the universe. Galactus would later reprimand Eternity for the audacity of his plan. The Celestials apparently decided to not take any measure whatsoever against the Skrulls at that point.
Jemiah and the other members of the Prime Celestial Host travelled to witness the almost-destruction of the universe due to a black hole created by Earth-born supervillain Maelstrom, who had increased his power due to stolen cosmic items and powers, and to a secret alliance with Oblivion. By then, the Watchers had already gathered to contemplate the disaster, and when they saw the Celestials, they hoped the Celestials may had come to stop the disaster. Soon, they were joined by other powerful spectators, including the Elan, Galactus, and the Rigellians, but none of them dared to tread on the unknown. The universe was saved thanks to Infinity's champion Quasar, with help of Origin and a cabal of Earth magicians led by Dr. Strange. At Maelstrom's vanquishment, the black hole opened and returned all the captured mass, under the fascinated gazed of Jemiah and the other witnesses.
The Celestials knew that Machine Man, a robot superhero from Earth that had been affected by one of the Celestials' Monoliths, had mutated with mutant-hunting Sentinel programming. This evolution was so interesting to the Celestials, that they sent a new Monolith to Earth, offering Machine Man to take it as a vehicle so he could meet with the Celestials. Machine Man accepted and moved through space, meeting with Arishem and Jemiah. The Celestials eventually returned Machine Man to Earth.
Like most Celestials, Jemiah barely moves or communicates directly with mortals.
Jemiah the Analyzer seems to collaborate with Gammenon the Gatherer: Gammenon obtains interesting organisms from the environment and delivers those to Jemiah so that the later can analyze them at his convenience. Jemiah and Gammenon also showed teamwork with each other when confronting the Destroyer and the Uni-Mind.
The extents of a Celestial's power is unclear, their limits having been barely seen. Each of his powers has an effect and range so huge that it is hardly accessible. The Celestials are likely to have unrevealed physical and psionic powers, beyond anyone in the physical plane. The following list includes the powers that Jemiah is confirmed to have:
- Biophysical control: Jemiah can alter the genetics of organisms to induce new or latent mutations, overt or not, on them.
- Energy control: Jemiah can manipulate any kind of non-material state outside the boundaries of his own body.
- Energy emission: Jemiah can shoot energy bolts from his left hand, and probably from other parts of his body. An impact of these bolts can damage even the most powerful physical beings such as a Uni-Mind and the Destroyer. Jemiah tends to maximize the effect of this attack by combining his bolts with those of at least one other Celestial.
- Flight: All the Celestials can hover and fly on their own power, although Jemiah in particular unfathomably holds a specific device on his hands when flying. Their fight speed is high enough to give them almost-teleportation skill, although the Fourth Host did use a mothership to travel through space. At one point, the Celestial leader One Above All sent a laser beam from his orbital spaceship to Jemiah and the rest of his landing party, making them apparently disappear but really distributing them throughout all the places on Earth, although this power may not be shared by other Celestials.
- Illusion casting: Jemiah has mental powers to generate illusions.
- Immortality: Should Jemiah be damaged to the point of death, he would only be rendered immobile while a component is taken from his armor, forcing him to suspended animation until he is recovered enough to move.
- Internal Limbo: The insides of a Celestial's armor looks like a habitat of chambers, bigger than the Celestial's outer shell, that resemble weird locations of places.
- Internal Defenses: Celestials seem to be inhabited by defensive organism that protect the interior of the Celestial from invaders. These include pink and purple disc-shaped acid swarms, green hectapoid fliers that shoot plasma, and replicoids that take the appearance of anything the Celestial want, to use them as emissaries.
- Invisibility: Jemiah has telepathic powers to make mortals ignore his presence, so that he can work uninterrupted until he decides to become visible. He retains his mass and substance while invisible, and there is no reason to believe that he would be undetected by technology.
- Invulnerability: Jemiah has outright protection against physical and energy-based attacks. Jemiah, along with the Fourth Host, withstood a full frontal attack of the collective power of the Asgardians and the Eternals, with barely any effect on him.
- Lifeform Detection: A power shown by no Celestial but Jemiah, this gives him the ability to analyze any possible aspect of a sample organism.
- Self-Duplication: A Celestial can co-exist simultaneously on several different locations, to perform his tasks at once in different worlds. Each of the bodies has the same powers. However, there cannot be two duplicates of the same Celestial in close proximity.
- Telepathy: The Celestials have advanced telepathic power and can communicate with mortals if they want, but they mostly talk only with other Celestials. Sometimes, thou, Celestials thoughts are "leaked" to the mortals, who can try to understand the Celestials' purpose.
Jemiah has an unheard-of leading knowledge of several fields, including at least genetics and mathematics.
The limits of the Celestials' powers are unknown, as is their source or nature. It is unclear whether the Celestials can teleport and/or transform themselves into energy. It is believed that the Celestials are unable to travel in time or between dimensions. It is known, though, that Celestials can be defeated and destroyed, even if it's by other Celestials: Some of the Third Host combined their power to disable one of them for a perceived crime.
Like the other Celestials, Jemiah wears a full body armor, covering his two-thousand-foot body. No Earthling being has ever seen Jemiah's appearance under the protective wear. It is thought that the armor is made of a composite tissue or alloy that is alien and unknown on Earth.
Jemiah use an unknown hand-held device when flying in atmosphere. Jemiah grabbed its handlebars, whose ends appeared to spit energy, to move through the City of the Space Gods. He was seen using this mechanism during the Third Host, when Arishem the Judge convinced the visiting gods to forfeit their plans, and a millennia later, after Gammenon the Gatherer gave him some life-seed capsules for analysis, shortly after the Fourth Host arrival. Jemiah was however able to levitate on his own power, as proved when the Fourth Host left Earth with the Young Gods; thus the raison d'être of this device may not be transporting Jemiah, but helping him with a different task while in flight.
The Fourth Host used a mothership to travel through space to Earth and from there once their mission was over. Jemiah was a part of the landing party on Peru while the ship remained on stationary orbit.
- The Celestials have a collective, half-page profile in Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Vol 1 #2 (1983), where Jemiah and eight others are identified by name in an image. Six of the Celestials, including Jemiah, are listed in the Appendix saying only "See Celestials ('s profile)"; Arishem the Judge has a longer appendix entry (two lines) and two other Celestials are ignored.
- Later, Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Vol 2 #2 (1986) includes a profile on the Celestials with individual entries for each Celestial, but saying for each only their first appearance; the common description of the Celestials repeats its last seven lines due to a typo.
- TSR, Inc.'s Marvel Super Heroes Role-Playing Game describes the Celestials, with profiles and role-playing game stats, in Gamer's Handbook of the Marvel Universe #1 (1988). Jemiah is given an individual power of Lifeform Detection that the other Celestials do not share.
- Jemiah's profile in Gamer's Handbook of the Marvel Universe #1 only details how Hargen, the Measurer, acts coordinated with Gammenon the Gatherer, not mentioning Jemiah at all. This is probably a typo, "Hargen" should have been "Jemiah."
- Lastly, Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Master Edition #16 (1992) includes an individual profile for Jemiah, albeit many specifics of his (her? its?) limits are left ambiguous.
- The Celestials as a race or as a team have been involved in other events including the defeat of the Dreaming Celestial, their relationship with the Fulcrum and the Celestial War. Those are not included in the article because there is no proof that Jemiah had been personally involved in them.
- 15 appearance(s) of Jemiah (Earth-616)
- 5 appearance(s) in handbook(s) of Jemiah (Earth-616)
- 1 minor appearance(s) of Jemiah (Earth-616)
- 2 mention(s) of Jemiah (Earth-616)
- 1 mention(s) in handbook(s) of Jemiah (Earth-616)
- 8 image(s) of Jemiah (Earth-616)
- 1 victim(s) killed by Jemiah (Earth-616)