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Appearing in "The Dying Game"

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Synopsis for "The Dying Game"

His full power restored by the Ka Stone ankh, Anath-Na Mut sets out to hunt down Richard Rider - the superhero known as Nova - and absorb his powers to become complete.

At Empire State University, Richard Rider, Bernie Dillon, and Roger Cooper exit the campus theatre after a showing of Citizen Kane - Rider expressing incredulity at the infamous twist ending. Roger mentions that Rider has joined up with the New Warriors, lamenting his change of costume and speculating that he's trying to hook up with Namorita. Rider maintains that he's over her, and states that he changed his costume in hopes that the Avengers would notice and recruit him. Several hours later, Bernie comes across Rider sleeping on the couch and accidentally startles him awake. Rider laments his busy schedule and states that he needs at least two days of sleep, but is forced to attend a college baseball match. Roger attempts to persuade him to use his Nova powers to win the game, but Rider is uncomfortable with cheating until Roger mentions that Jennifer Smith will be there.

Later, Rider uses his powers to score home run after home run, and as the team celebrates Bernie plays wingman and introduces Rider to Elizabeth Rand. Jennifer Smith interrupts Elizabeth's attempt to ask Rider on a date with her own request, Rider remarking he thought she was already dating Randy Reed. As Jennifer dials up the flirtation and Roger congratulates Rider on scoring his dream girl, Elizabeth becomes increasingly dejected. An explosion goes off behind them, and Roger watches in horror as Jennifer and Bernie are reduced to emaciated corpses. Transforming into Nova, Rider flies into the decimated city and searches for survivors only to be blindsided by Anath-Na Mut. Horrified that the Sphinx is back, Rider realizes that he can undo the deaths and destruction caused by Anath-Na Mut's reality-warping powers - and also give himself an in with the Avengers. The Sphinx grabs him and begins to drain his life force, Nova lamenting allowing Reed Richards to dampen his powers. Nova breaks free while the Sphinx is distracted by regaining some of his memories, running into some civilians - who are promptly killed. Declaring his intent to force Nova to submit even if he has to suck the entire planet dry in order to do so, the Sphinx begins absorbing the life force from everyone and everything in the vicinity, growing to a colossal height. Nova demands to know what Anath-Na Mut wants, and the Sphinx responds that he seeks revenge against Galactus - intending to suck both Earth and Xandar dry in order to obtain the power to do so. Nova blasts the Sphinx - refusing to give up the knowledge and power stored in Xandar's supercomputer - but Anath-Na Mut grows to the size of a highrise. Nova rams Anath-Na Mut, seeking to get him away from the city, and knocks him into the ocean. Before he can fly away, he's blasted by the power of the Ka Stone. As the Sphinx grows large enough to stand on the ocean floor with the sea level at waist height, Nova rips the Ka Stone out of Anath-Na Mut's ankh flies into space, throwing it into the sun. Anath-Na Mut turns to stone and Nova smashes him to pieces, freeing the trapped souls - resurrecting the people Anath-Na Mut had killed - and undoing the destruction to the city. As time snaps back to before the battle, Rider finds himself returned to the ballpark and accepts Jennifer Smith's offer of a date.

Elsewhere, in a dark apartment room Eddie Brock watches on the TV as a news anchor reports that Mary - his 23 year-old sister - was critically injured and left comatose by Nova's battle. Enraged, Brock smashes the television and transforms into Venom, swearing revenge.

Solicit Synopsis

  • The Sphinx has traveled across the globe to find Nova, whose power may grant immortality to the once-and-future Pharaoh! But with the Human Rocket's powers behaving so unpredictably, who knows what will happen?!


  • As revealed in Venom (Vol. 4) #11, Eddie Brock doesn't actually have a sister named Mary -- his "sister" is just false memories inserted into his consciousness by the the Venom symbiote. Presumably, when Eddie saw on TV that a woman named Mary Brock was injured, he just assumed that she was his (nonexistent) sister.

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