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Adam Warlock Reading Order

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Originally introduced in 1967 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby under the name “Him” in Fantastic Four #66-67, Adam Warlock really started in Marvel Premiere #1 (April 1972) written by Roy Thomas and penciled by Gil Kane.

Adam Warlock is a synthetic lifeform created in the image of a perfect human being. He is one of the most powerful heroes of the entire cosmos–and possessed magical abilities and has to use them to fight The Magus, his malevolent future self.

At the start, a coalition of scientists known as The Enclave incubated Warlock in an artificial cocoon. Once out, he rebelled against his creators after realizing they were nefarious. When he re-emerged, years later, he was named “Warlock” by the High Evolutionary and was gifted the Soul Gem. He didn’t become a hero on Earth, but on Counter-Earth–a new planet generated from a chunk of Earth and set in orbit on the opposite side of the sun.

A few years later, Jim Starlin revived the character and made him more of a cosmic hero, twice. The first time, it only lasted for a few issues, but he brought Adam Warlock back for his Infinity Saga eleven years later–during the 1990s.

During the 2000s, when Marvel decided to revive its cosmic universe, Warlock made his comeback, playing his part in the Annihilation Saga.

Adam Warlock Reading Order

Adam Warlock, The First Years (the 1960s-1970s)

The story of Adam Warlock’s inception was published in Fantastic Four #66-67 (collected in Marvel Masterworks: Fantastic Four Vol. 7). That’s when he emerged from the cocoon. After that, he only did a Thor storyline, again as “Him” (not yet Warlock), in Thor #163-166 (collected in Marvel Masterworks: The Mighty Thor Vol. 8).

Those “origin stories” are for the completists. The story of Adam Warlock really began when he got his name and became a Jesus-like hero in the 1970s:

The Omnibus Edition

  • Adam Warlock Omnibus
    Collects Fantastic Four (1961) #66-67, Thor (1966) #165-166, Marvel Premiere #1-2, Warlock (1972) #1-15, Incredible Hulk (1968) #176-178 And Annual #6, Strange Tales (1951) #178-181, Marvel Team-Up (1972) #55, Avengers Annual #7 And Marvel Two-In-One (1972) #61-63 And Annual #2.

Previous collections:

Up until recently, the omnibus was not available. Here are the way you could collect the Adam Warlock stories of the 1970s.

You can find the Jim Starlin work–what really defined the world around Adam Warlock–in another collected edition:

Adam Warlock and the Infinity Saga (the 1980s-1990s)

Jim Starlin’s Infinity Saga is one of those iconic classic stories you can’t miss. Adam Warlock played a big part in it. You can find a more detailed version in our Infinity Saga Reading Order.

For the Mad Titan, Thanos, the Infinity Gauntlet was the Holy Grail — the ultimate prize to be coveted above all else. With it came omnipotence: the absolute control of all aspects of time, space, power, reality, mind, and soul. But his gaining of supreme might mean the beginning of a black nightmare for the entire universe. Now, on the edge of Armageddon and led by the mysterious Adam Warlock, Earth’s superheroes join in a desperate attempt to thwart this nihilistic god’s insane plunge into galactic self-destruction. Should the heroes fail, the astral gods of the universe wait to step into the fray.

  • Infinity Gauntlet Omnibus
    Collects Silver Surfer (1987) #34-38, 40, 44-60, Thanos Quest (1990) #1-2, Infinity Gauntlet #1-6, Cloak & Dagger (1988) #18, Spider-Man (1990) #17, Incredible Hulk (1968) #383-385, Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme (1988) #31-36, Quasar (1989) #26-27, Sleepwalker (1991) #7.
  • Infinity War Omnibus
    Collects Infinity War #1-6, Fantastic Four (1961) #366-370, Spider-Man (1990) #24, Deathlok (1991) #16, Daredevil (1964) #310, Warlock And The Infinity Watch 7-10, Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme 42-47, Silver Surfer (1987) #67-69, Wonder Man (1991) #13-15, Alpha Flight (1983) #110-112, Silver Sable & The Wild Pack 4-5, Guardians Of The Galaxy (1990) #27-29, Quasar 37-40, New Warriors (1990) #27, Marc Spector: Moon Knight 41-44, Nomad (1992) #7, Sleepwalker 18, Material From Captain America (1968) #408, Alpha Flight (1983) #109, Marvel Comics Presents (1988) #108-112.

  • Infinity Crusade Omnibus
    Collects Infinity Crusade (1993) #1-6, Warlock Chronicles (1993) #1-5, Warlock And The Infinity Watch (1992) #18-22, Thor (1966) #463-467, Iron Man (1968) #294-295, Avengers West Coast (1989) #96-97, Darkhawk (1991) #30-31, Cage (1992) #17, Alpha Flight (1983) #124-125, 127, Marc Spector: Moon Knight (1989) #57, Silver Surfer (1987) #83-85, Deathlok (1991) #28, Material From Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme (1988) #54-56, Alpha Flight (1983) #122-123, 126, Web Of Spider-Man (1985) #104-106, Silver Sable & The Wild Pack (1992) #16-17, Deathlok (1991) #29.
  • Thor: Blood & Thunder
    Collects Thor (1966) #468-471, Silver Surfer (1987) #86-88, Warlock Chronicles #6-8, and Warlock And The Infinity Watch #23- 25.
  • Infinity Watch Vol. 2
    Collects Warlock Chronicles #6, Warlock And The Infinity Watch #26-42.

Adam Warlock and the Annihilation Saga (the 2000s-2010s)

First, before The Annihilation Saga, Adam Warlock got a short miniseries (in 1998) and Jim Starlin bring him back with new Thanos tales.

In 2004, Greg Pak wrote a short out-of-continuity Warlock miniseries (illustrated by Charlie Adlard), but it’s not really a Warlock as it focuses on artist Janie Chin who thinks she’s creating a new version of Warlock for a movie, but soon realizes it not fiction!

As the Marvel Cosmic Universe was relaunched, every cosmic character is brought back, including Adam Warlock of course. Overseen by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning, this new era saw Warlock join the Guardians of the Galaxy–and the Magus came back.

For a full guide to the saga, go to Marvel Cosmic Reading Order. For what’s important for Adam Warlock, here is the list:

Adam Warlock in the new Jim Starlin’s Infinity Saga (the 2010s)

In the mid-2010s, Jim Starlin wrote a new cosmic saga. Less ambitious, but filled with all the familiar characters, including Adam Warlock, of course. It’s composed of three graphic novels.

Here is the story: Thanos has returned, continuing his never-ending quest for universal power and control — but a strange change will soon alter his life, and that of his constant foil Adam Warlock, in unexpected ways! When Annihilus invades our universe, Thanos is the only being who can stand against him. But will he make the ultimate sacrifice? And when Thanos’ all-powerful future self menaces the past, can Adam Warlock, Pip the Troll, and Thanos’ brother Starfox set things right?

  • Thanos: The Infinity Saga Omnibus
    Collects Thanos Annual (2014) #1, Thanos: The Infinity Revelation (2014), Thanos vs. Hulk (2014) #1-#4, Thanos: The Infinity Relativity (2015), Infinity Entity (2016) #1-#4, Thanos: The Infinity Finale (2016), Guardians of the Galaxy: Mother Entropy (2017) #1-#5, Thanos: The Infinity Siblings (2018), Thanos: The Infinity Conflict (2018), Thanos: The Infinity Ending (2019).

Adam Warlock in the Infinity Wars (the late 2010s)

The “Infinity” brand is strong, and Marvel can’t stop using it. First, with Infinity Countdown, then the sequel, Infinity Wars. Of course, Adam Warlock is playing its part. Find more about these events in our Infinity Wars Reading Order.

Here is the official synopsis: The Infinity Stones are back. Individually, they grant their wielders great power. Together, they bestow the power of a god! As each stone’s location is discovered, forces converge for a battle that will send the universe down a dark path…to the end! Featuring the Chitauri, the Raptors, the Nova Corps, the Guardians of the Galaxy, Adam Warlock, and more surprising Stone-wielders!

  • Infinity Wars by Gerry Duggan: The Complete Collection
    Collects Infinity Countdown Prime #1, Infinity Countdown #1-5, Infinity Countdown: Adam Warlock #1, Free Comic Book Day Amazing Spider-Man/Guardians of the Galaxy 2018 (Guardians of the Galaxy Saga), Infinity Wars Prime #1, Infinity Wars #1-6, Infinity Wars: Fallen Guardian #1, Infinity Wars: Infinity #1, Thanos Legacy #1 (B story).

Last Updated on March 3, 2023.

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