Marvel Database

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Marvel Database

Secret Wars is the title of Marvel's first ever company-wide crossover event. It was the first crossover event to include all company properties in the history of comics. Secret Wars was developed at the request of the toy manufacturer Mattel, who wanted to capitalize on the resurgence in popularity of action figure toys in the early 1980s and create a new line of toys for popular Marvel characters. The company asked for an editorial concept to be published that tied-in with the new toy line and brought all of the characters together.[1]

The toy line that inspired the Secret Wars event did not sell exceptionally well. However, the limited-edition line of comics that it produced became the best-selling comic book series in 25 years. This inspired the idea of having all of Marvel's characters appear in an annual crossover event, and has been a tradition that Marvel Comics has continued to this day.[1]

A sequel, Secret Wars II was published the next year in 1986, tying-in almost every Marvel comic book written at the time and featuring a plot involving the original Secret Wars architect, Beyonder, visiting Earth. In 2015, Marvel released another large event under the name Secret Wars.


The Secret Wars event began in each individual hero's respective magazines, with all of the chosen heroes feeling "called" to a massive mechanical ring that mysteriously appeared in Central Park and that instantly transports them to a location called Battleworld when they step inside. The events of each character being transported from Earth to Battleworld were depicted in:

It is soon revealed that a cosmic entity known as the Beyonder had gathered this large assortment of superheroes and super-villains on Battleworld to see who would win in a fight of good against evil.[5]




  • Though they were allied with Captain America's faction, the X-Men chose to act as a "third force" in the conflict, because of others' skepticism over Magneto's presence among the heroes.
  • Two mini-series have since been released to further flesh out the heroes' time on Battleworld.
    • 2015's Deadpool's Secret Secret Wars, which established that Deadpool was present during the event, though Wasp's strong desire to forget him after a failed romance wiped his presence from everyone's minds. Additionally, Deadpool used his own wish to revive the deceased Zsaji.[6]
    • 2023's Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars: Battleworld, released to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the event. It focused on Spider-Man and the Human Torch and revealed the presence of several heroes and villains not included in the original event. However, it did not acknowledge Deadpool's involvement.
  • The heroes' absence causes criminal activity to greatly increase on Earth.[7]

See Also

Links and References