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Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy Reading Order

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First appearing in Marvel Super-Heroes #18 (Jan. 1969), the Guardians of the Galaxy is a superhero team that originated from an idea Roy Thomas had about “super-guerrillas fighting against Russians and Red Chinese who had taken over and divided the USA.” Thomas didn’t have the time to research it so Stan Lee gave it to Arnold Drake. He took it and placed it in space.

Penciled by Gene Colan, the first story introduced us to an alternative timeline of the Marvel Universe known as Earth-691, in the 31st century. The members of the Guardians of the Galaxy were Major Vance Astro, an astronaut from 20th century Earth who spends a thousand years traveling to Alpha Centauri in suspended animation; Martinex T’Naga, a crystalline being from Pluto; Captain Charlie-27, a soldier from Jupiter; and Yondu Udonta, a blue-skinned “noble savage” from Centauri-IV.

Together, they fight against the Badoon, a reptilian alien species, determined to conquer Earth’s Solar System. The team grew as the fight went on. And when the Guardians defeated the Badoon, the evil Korvac became their main foe. They traveled in time, developed into a multiple-team organization, and simply continued to fight… up until Guardians of the Galaxy #62 (July 1995).

In May 2008, Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning introduced a new version of the Guardians of the Galaxy following the Annihilation: Conquest event–the old team appeared as guest stars during the series and got a new title, Guardians 3000.

The new roster united Star-Lord, Rocket Raccoon, Groot, Phyla-Vell, Gamora, Drax the Destroyer, and Adam Warlock. Together, they play an important part in the Annihilation storylines that relaunched the Cosmic Universe of Marvel.

With the movie coming out, the team was pushed to the front, and, in 2012 with the launch of the Marvel NOW! initiative, Brian Michael Bendis became the main writer of the series (drawn by Steve McNiven). New members joined, spin-offs were developed, and guest appearances in other titles multiplied. The Guardians of the Galaxy became big players in the Marvel Universe.

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Last Updated on April 26, 2024.

Annihilation Scourge Reading Order

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Annihilation Scourge Reading Order - Nova

Back in 2006, Marvel relaunched its Cosmic Universe with the Annihilation crossover event. It led to a series of events of the same kind, but also to a new Guardians of the Galaxy series and more. You can find here our reading guide of that era piloted by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning.

Since C. B. Cebulski became Marvel’s editor-in-chief in 2017, a lot of names associated with popular events of the past have been reused. It was the case in 2019 with Annihilation. This time though, it was not as ambitious as the first time. In fact, Annihilation Scourge works like a 6-part miniseries.

Here is the official synopsis: The Negative Zone is under siege! Now the Lord of the Negative Zone, Annihilus, makes a call for help to the very heroes he once fought against! It’s an all-out battle as Nova, Silver Surfer and some of your favorite cosmic heroes try to prevent the next annihilation.

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Last Updated on August 17, 2022.

Marvel Cosmic Reading Order, The Modern Saga by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning (2004-2011)

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Marvel Cosmic Reading Order

What is called “Marvel Cosmic” is mostly every story in the Marvel Universe not connected to Earth. It’s not the perfect definition, because it’s more about what’s connected to Thanos, The Guardian of the Galaxy, Nova, The Silver Surfer, and others. Well, it’s still not a very good definition. Today, we are talking about the cosmic saga that started in 2004 with the crossover event Annihilation. Orchestrated by Keith Giffen, this storyline relaunched most of the outer-space series from Marvel.

It was just the beginning as one crossover event led to the other, from Annihilation to Annihilation: Conquest, to War of Kings, to Realm of Kings to Annihilators. A huge saga that was overseen by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning that reintroduced Nova & the Nova Corps, The Guardian of the Galaxy, and Ronan the Accuser. A captivating and epic story without the usual big names of the Marvel Universe.

We already published individual reading orders for the three main events (Annihilation, Annihilation: Conquest, and War of Kings), but here is a complete guide from that era.

What to read before the Marvel Cosmic Saga?

If you want to take a look back at the origins of some of the main characters used in the coming Annihilation saga, Marvel published a book for you:

  • Annihilation Classic
    Collects Bug #1, Tales To Astonish #13, Nova #1, Quasar #1, Rocket Raccoon #1-4, Marvel Spotlight #6, Logan’s Run #6, Marvel Premiere #1.

You can also explore the previous Marvel Cosmic Sage with our Jim Starlin’s Infinity Saga Reading Order.

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Last Updated on November 5, 2022.

War of Kings Reading Order, a Marvel Cosmic Event (leading to Realm of Kings and The Thanos Imperative)

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War of Kings Reading Order

After Annihilation event (see reading order) and its direct sequel as part of the modern Marvel Cosmic saga, Annihilation: Conquest (see reading order), the Marvel Cosmic Universe kept going forward for a good year, then a new crossover storyline written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning titled War of King happened.

Here is the official synopsis: Intending to restore their strength and security in the aftermath of the Secret Invasion, Black Bolt finds he has to lead the Inhumans into direct confrontation with the Shi’Ar Empire and their insane ruler, Vulcan. What happens when an Inhuman-led Kree go to war with the Shi’ar led by the crazed Summers brother Vulcan? When these mighty powers turn their rage upon one another, what happens to those caught in the crossfire? When two mighty rulers wage war, who will rule?

What to read before War of Kings?

A lot happened since Annihilation: Conquest with the Guardians of the Galaxy, Nova, but also the X-Men and the Secret Invasion. In order to go in fully prepared, you’ll want to take a look at those books:

  • War of Kings Prelude: Road to War of Kings Omnibus
    Collects Son Of M #1-6, X-Men: Deadly Genesis #1-6, Silent War #1-6, Secret Invasion: Inhumans #1-4, Guardians Of The Galaxy (2008) #1-12, Nova #13-22, Nova: The Origin Of Richard Rider, War Of Kings Saga.

War of Kings Prelude Road to War of Kings Reading Order Omnibus

Or in trade paperbacks:

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Last Updated on November 5, 2022.

Annihilation: Conquest Reading Order, a Marvel Cosmic Event

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Annihilation: Conquest Reading Order

Almost directly after the first Annihilation event (see reading order), Marvel published its sequel as part of the modern Marvel Cosmic saga. Annihilation: Conquest is a 2007-08 crossover storyline that focuses on Marvel’s cosmic heroes defending the universe against the Phalanx, now led by Ultron. 

Here is the official synopsis: In the aftermath of the Annihilation War, a devastated galaxy struggles to rebuild. The Nova Corps are destroyed, leaving only Richard Rider. Who will rise to guard the galaxy against the threat of Ultron? When the Kree homeworld is invaded by the techno-organic Phalanx, Star-Lord must lead a ragtag team into battle behind enemy lines with a lineup that includes Mantis, Bug, Groot, and Rocket Raccoon! Meanwhile, the new Quasar seeks a mysterious savior — and Nova and Gamora are taken over by the Phalanx! Who is the haunted loner called Wraith? Can the New Mutants’ Warlock free Nova? And what are Ultron and the Phalanx really after?

What to read before Annihilation: Conquest?

Being a direct sequel to Annihilation, it is necessary to read that first cosmic event (see reading order). Once this one ended, only three Nova issues were published before Annihilation: Conquest began – they are collected with the rest of the event or here.

  • Annihilation Omnibus
    Collects Drax The Destroyer #1-4, Annihilation: Prologue, Annihilation: Nova #1-4, Annihilation: Silver Surfer #1-4, Annihilation: Super-Skrull #1-4, Annihilation: Ronan #1-4, Annihilation #1-6, Annihilation: Heralds Of Galactus #1-2 And Annihilation: Nova Corps Files.

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Last Updated on August 3, 2022.

Marvel’s The Last Annihilation Reading Order (Guardians of the Galaxy)

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All of the “Annihilation” events are not created equal. In fact, it seems that “The Last Annihilation” is a minor event in comparison to the previous Annihilations, and it mostly involves the Guardians of the Galaxy written by Al Ewing with art by Juan Frigeri.

What is it about? Here is the official synopsis: The entire galaxy is under attack, the likes of which haven’t been seen since Annihilus first waged war. Now, five different planets are simultaneously under threat from a mysterious foe. This is what the new Guardians were built to do. But will it be too much? This summer… the war to end all wars begins. And not everyone’s going to come home.

What to read before The Last Annihilation?

The Last Annihilation being a cosmic event, you may also want to read the two previous events that had a considerable impact on the cosmic part of the Marvel Universe. First, there was Empyre (full reading order here), then we’ve got the King in Black event (full reading order here).

Al Ewing recently took over the Guardians of the Galaxy book. If you want to familiarize yourself with the new team, you can read the previous TPBs:

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Last Updated on July 31, 2022.