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Quote1 Tell me, why has this one particular, otherwise unremarkable world always been such a hotbed for super-powered madness? Why is the Earth so uniquely eccentric within the near-infinite number of planets strewn across the heavens? Why indeed? Not because of any grand purpose, I can assure you. But because of that bubbling, black puddle of Celestial regurgitation and the monstrous things that would come slithering out of it. Any guesses as to what those monsters were. Hmmm? They were YOU! Yes, you Captain America. You and all your mutated, gamma-irradiated, web-slinging ilk. And this is who you have to thank. The Progenitor. The origin of the world as you know it. The god who died so that you might live. Quote2
Loki[src]

The Progenitor was a Celestial who was infected by the Horde and died on the newly formed planet Earth. This event is said to be the origin of life on Earth and the reason for why so many of Earth's inhabitants have superpowers.[8][9]

In the modern era, the Progenitor's corpse became Avengers Mountain after it was raised from beneath the Arctic Ocean by the other Celestials as a gift to the Avengers.[10] It was later used to manufacture a new Celestial to end a conflict between the Eternals and mutants. However, this new Celestial was disappointed by the people of Earth and declared a Judgment Day where everyone will be judged individually to determine if they as a collective are worth living. Before it could wipe out humanity, it was convinced that itself was not worthy, reversed its actions, and caused itself to return to being Avengers Mountain. The Progenitor empowered Ajak so that she could be the worthy god in its stead.[11]

History

The Progenitor was a Celestial who may or may not have originated during the time of the First Cosmos; however, what is known is that Celestials' counterparts across the Multiverse are interconnected aspects of themselves and not separate beings. Thus, the Progenitor of Earth-616 is one aspect of the true Progenitor.[12]

Arrival on Earth and Death[]

Progenitor (Celestial) (Multiverse) from Avengers Vol 8 5 001

According to Loki, the Progenitor was an Alpha Celestial who came to Earth four billion years ago after being infected by the Horde to die a sad and painful death.[2] The Celestial's diseased body fluids seeped into the Earth and percolated through the planet's primeval surface, forever altering the Earth's evolutionary trajectory. Loki further claimed that this process constituted the primordial cause that gave rise to the superhuman abnormalities present in many of Earth's inhabitants.[13] The Progenitor's corpse laid unmoved within the Arctic Circle, and its resting place became the bottom of the Arctic Ocean at the North Pole.[1]

Also according to Loki, a Celestial known as Zgreb the Aspirant arrived on Earth one million years ago in search of the Progenitor. Zgreb found the Progenitor's corpse but it was infested by millions of Horde bugs that soon infected Zgreb. However, having learned from their experience with the Progenitor, this time the Horde bugs did not kill the Celestial but the infection deranged and weakened Zgreb. When its rampage brought it into conflict with the Avengers of the Stone Age, Zgreb had been weakened enough that the Avengers were able to defeat it and bury it deep underground in what would become the modern-day country of South Africa, bound by powerful spells.[13][14] Once they noticed that two of their race were missing, the Celestial First Host came to Earth to investigate[15] and easily defeated the Stone Age Avengers.[2] The First Host subsequently found both Zgreb and the Progenitor's body but, for reasons of their own, left Earth without disturbing them.[13]

As the Avengers' Base[]

Avengers Mountain from Venom Vol 4 21 001

In modern age, after Loki facilitated the arrival of the Final Host of Dark Celestials with the objective of purging the Earth,[16] he captured Captain America, took him to the Progenitor's resting place and told him its story.[1] Following the defeat of the Final Host at the hands of the reformed Avengers,[17] the resurrected First Celestial Host brought forth the Progenitor from its watery grave and bestowed it upon the Avengers as a gift to serve as their new headquarters and a reminder of the wonders of life on Earth.[10] The corpse was refurbished by the finest architects from Wakanda and technicians from Alpha Flight, turning it into the Avengers Mountain.[10]

As soon as she discovered that the Progenitor's body had been transformed into Avengers Mountain, the Eternal Ajak became enraged that the body of one of her gods had been so defiled by the Avengers. Only the intervention of her comrade Makkari, who swiftly moved her 100 miles away, prevented Ajak from attacking Ghost Rider (Robbie Reyes).[18]

Mere days later, after an urgent need to learn the secret of the Deviants developed, Ajak, Makkari and two other Eternals infiltrated Avengers Mountain so that Ajak could attempt to commune with the mind of her dead god. At a place within the corpse where the ley lines congregated, Ajak and Makkari carried out a ritual that intrigued the ghost of the long-dead Progenitor enough to make it manifest before them.[19] However, when the Progenitor's ghost refused to speak to her, Ajak summoned a special spiked-ball-and-chain flail capable of harming ghosts and began using it to bludgeon the ghost. After suffering some damage, the ghost finally spoke and what it told Ajak caused her to wish that she had hit it harder.[4]

Judgment Day[]

Progenitor (Celestial) (Multiverse) from A.X.E

When Druig lead the Eternals to war against the mutant nation of Krakoa, Ajak and Makkari formulated a plan. Abducting Mister Sinister, for his knowledge gained by debasing the Dreaming Celestial, and recruiting Tony Stark, they set about reviving the Progenitor. This was not to be a simple resurrection. Instead, they would re-write the "programming" of the Celestial, creating a being with ideals more aligned with their own. This new god would, if they succeeded, forcibly end Druig's war. Upon waking, the Progenitor did just that. However, the Progenitor quickly surmised that the inhabitants of Earth had driven it to ruin. He declared they would have twenty-four hours to prove themselves more good than evil, else he would destroy the world.[6]

After many judgments,[20][21][22][23][24][25][26][27][28][29] the Progenitor judged humanity as unworthy. The heroes of the planet united against it but were defeated.[30] The Progenitor demanded the Machine that is Earth to self-destruct; however, the Machine refused and Phastos reset it before the Progenitor could cause it to explode.[31] Meanwhile, some of the Eternals, X-Men, Sinister, and Stark infiltrated the Celestial to activate its own self-destruct while continuing to be judged by the Progenitor.[32][33][34] Upon reaching the core, they convinced the Progenitor that it itself is not worthy which resulted in it undoing every death it caused and reverted back to Avengers Mountain. It also empowered Ajak so that she could be the god it could not. However, the Progenitor did not truly die and continued to observe the world and its inhabitants.[7]

Post-Judgment Day[]

Despite being "dead," the Progenitor was still able to communicate with Starbrand and tell her things she should know, like the fact that her powers were shortening her lifespan.[35]

Avengers Assemble[]

After a Deathlok uploaded his consciousness into Avengers Mountain,[36] he managed to pilot it. The Celestial was still dead, but the Deathlok-controlled Celestial corpse, equipped with a Celestial-sized Deathlok blaster, joined the fight against Mephisto and an army of Doctor Doom variants at the God Quarry.[37] As that Deathlok originally came from the God Quarry, he stayed in the God Quarry after the crisis was over and the Progenitor's body served as the new base of operations for Avenger Prime.[38]

Multiverse[]

Quote1 Unlike you and me, who have separate aspects in each universe, the Celestials exist as aspects of one being linked across the Multiverse simultaneously. Quote2
Dark Beast[src]

The Celestials exist across the Multiverse simultaneously. A Celestial's alternate reality selves are actually aspects of the same being.[12] Despite this, their alternate aspects may have very different histories from the ones in the mainstream Marvel Universe.

Wastelands (Earth-818)[]

Progenitor (Celestial) (Multiverse) from Avengers Forever Vol 2 1

After being discovered by Ant-Man at the bottom of a North Pole volcano, Stark used the head to create his Knowhere Gun.[39]

Heroes Reborn (Earth-21798)[]

The Progenitor's corpse was found below the Arctic by the Black Panther; T'Challa claimed it had been calling to him to help it rise. He harnessed some of its power and technology, what few scraps he could understand, to teleport.[40]

Attributes

Powers

  • Nigh-omnipotence: Like all Celestials, the Progenitor was a being of inconceivable power. In a direct confrontation, the Progenitor was able to take out all of Earth's heroes simultaneously, killing a significant number of them in creative ways. For example, it made Cyclops susceptible to his own blasts and gave Captain Marvel cancer. Others, it simply disintegrated, even the likes of Thor, Phoenix, and Starbrand.[30] The Invisible Woman claimed that dimensional portals would be useless against it because it was a being that can fold time and space.[41]
  • Transcending time: The new version of the Progenitor was "conscious" before it was even born.[42] Even after it "died," it is still not completely dead.[7][35]
  • Telepathy: The new Progenitor was able to communicate with all minds on Earth simultaneously to declare its message of Judgment Day.[6] It could analyze the lives of all people on Earth, Arakko (Mars),[23] and adjacent dimensions such as K'un-Lun[29] within 24 hours. It was aware of its own weaknesses and showed the Avengers, X-Men, and Eternals a future of its death (which also significantly devastated the Northern Hemisphere). The Progenitor was skilled enough to fool even Jean Grey.[43] According to Jean, its psychic presence was so massive that, had it not been for her, all her allies would have been crushed by it.[32] Jean commented that the Celestial "thinks like nothing else" and the weight of its consciousness warped everything like a black hole.[33]
    • The Progenitor was able to force Mr. Sinister to speak the truth, to the latter's dismay.[33]
  • Cosmic Awareness: The Progenitor was omnipresent, aware of everybody's lives, how they felt, what they thought, and what they have done.[20][21][22][23][24][25][26][27][29][32][33][34] It claimed to know the fates of everyone and possibly had precognition.[44]
  • Technopathy: The Progenitor was able to speak to the Machine that is Earth.[21] When the Machine refused the Progenitor's orders to destroy itself, the Progenitor attempted to hack it and nearly succeeded until Phastos reset the Machine.[31]
    • The Progenitor prevented Mister Sinister from using his Moira Engine and caused his machines to malfunction.[45][46]
  • Avatar Creation: The Progenitor created an avatar using ice and snow.[44]
  • Shapeshifting and Projection: When handing out judgments, the Progenitor sometimes took the form of others to the recipient, either to make the person feel judged,[22] or anonymously in the form of a test.[47] These projections can be physical.[26]
    • The Progenitor's main body was warped from what it was previously (as Avengers Mountain) because, after being recently flushed with power from its creation/rebirth, it became too "heavy" for reality.[32][33]
    • Some of the Progenitor's "tests" were quite real. For example, Shaw noted that the hellfires in Exodus' test were real, not an illusion, and they were consuming Exodus.[22] Lin Lie's test was basically the challenge of taking Shou-Lao's heart since he became the Iron Fist without completing it. He (and Loki) defeated the dragon, Lin Lie asked for the heart instead of taking it, and the Progenitor granted him the mark of the Iron Fist.[29]
  • Resurrection: Having judged Peter Parker's heart as worthy while taking the form of Gwen Stacy, the Progenitor briefly revived the real Gwen so that she could see his heart too.[27] Mr. Sinister claimed it should be possible for the Progenitor to bring everyone it killed back to life.[33] At the end of Judgment Day, it revived everybody it killed but the process caused it to revert back to its previous form as Avengers Mountain.[7]
  • Power Bestowal: The Progenitor gave Ajak some of its power, transforming her.[7]

Weaknesses

  • The original Progenitor was killed by a Horde infection.[13]
  • Weakened armor (post-mortem): The Progenitor's armor was noted to be considerably weakened after it died.[48]
  • Built-in weaknesses: The new makeshift Progenitor, built by the combined efforts of some of the Eternals, the Avengers, and Mr. Sinister, has several built-in weaknesses:
    • A node on the center of its chest that, if destroyed, would destroy the Progenitor. However, doing so will also cause a massive explosion that will devastate the Northern Hemisphere.[43]
    • Sinister had set up the Celestial so that he could chip off specific pieces of its armor in the command center.[43]

Notes

  • Loki speculates the Progenitor and Zgreb might have been lovers, though there are no words for such things in the Celestial language.[13]
  • It is said that Earth was "insignificant and utterly lifeless" when the Progenitor fell and that the Progenitor started life on Earth.[13][9] The story of the Demiurge is that Earth was a very special planet gifted with far more life energy than most; this energy became sentient and seeded Earth with its first lifeforms, the Elder Gods.[49][50] The annotations section of History of the Marvel Universe (Vol. 2) #1 acknowledges both accounts and states that the Progenitor crashed before the Demiurge.

Trivia

See Also

Links and References

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Avengers (Vol. 8) #3
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Avengers (Vol. 8) #4
  3. History of the Marvel Universe (Vol. 2) #1
  4. 4.0 4.1 Eternals (Vol. 5) #11
  5. 5.0 5.1 Avengers (Vol. 9) #1
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 A.X.E.: Judgment Day #2
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 7.8 A.X.E.: Judgment Day #6
  8. Avengers (Vol. 8) #35
  9. 9.0 9.1 Domino: Hotshots #3
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Avengers (Vol. 8) #8
  11. A.X.E.: Judgment Day #16
  12. 12.0 12.1 X-Termination #1
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 13.5 13.6 Avengers (Vol. 8) #5
  14. Marvel Legacy #1
  15. Avengers (Vol. 8) #1
  16. Avengers (Vol. 8) #2
  17. Avengers (Vol. 8) #6
  18. Eternals: Celestia #1
  19. Eternals (Vol. 5) #10
  20. 20.0 20.1 A.X.E.: Judgment Day #34
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 21.3 21.4 21.5 21.6 A.X.E.: Death to the Mutants #2
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 22.3 22.4 22.5 22.6 22.7 22.8 22.9 Immortal X-Men #6
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 X-Men: Red #7
  24. 24.0 24.1 Wolverine (Vol. 7) #2425
  25. 25.0 25.1 Marauders (Vol. 2) #6
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 26.3 Avengers (Vol. 8) #60
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 27.3 Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 6) #10
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 28.3 Captain Marvel (Vol. 10) #42
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 29.3 29.4 29.5 29.6 A.X.E.: Iron Fist #1
  30. 30.0 30.1 A.X.E.: Judgment Day #5
  31. 31.0 31.1 A.X.E.: Death to the Mutants #3
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 32.3 32.4 A.X.E.: Avengers #1
  33. 33.0 33.1 33.2 33.3 33.4 33.5 33.6 33.7 A.X.E.: X-Men #1
  34. 34.0 34.1 34.2 34.3 34.4 A.X.E.: Eternals #1
  35. 35.0 35.1 Avengers (Vol. 8) #61
  36. Avengers (Vol. 8) #54
  37. Avengers (Vol. 8) #66
  38. Avengers Assemble Omega #1
  39. Avengers: Forever (Vol. 2) #1
  40. Heroes Reborn (Vol. 2) #5
  41. Fantastic Four (Vol. 6) #47
  42. A.X.E.: Judgment Day #1
  43. 43.0 43.1 43.2 43.3 A.X.E.: Judgment Day #3
  44. 44.0 44.1 Wolverine (Vol. 7) #24
  45. Immortal X-Men #7
  46. 46.0 46.1 Immortal X-Men #9
  47. 47.00 47.01 47.02 47.03 47.04 47.05 47.06 47.07 47.08 47.09 47.10 47.11 47.12 47.13 47.14 47.15 47.16 47.17 A.X.E.: Judgment Day #4
  48. Avengers (Vol. 8) #53
  49. Thor Annual #10
  50. Silver Surfer Annual #2
  51. X-Men (Vol. 6) #14
  52. 52.0 52.1 52.2 52.3 Fantastic Four (Vol. 6) #48
  53. Wolverine (Vol. 7) #25
  54. 54.0 54.1 X-Men: Red (Vol. 2) #7
  55. Legion of X #6
  56. Rise of the Powers of X #5
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