Story arc »

    The Annihilation Wave sweeps through the galaxy extinguishing all life in its path. This involves Nova, Galactus, Silver Surfer, Annihilus and a lot more.

    Short summary describing this arc.

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    When an extraterrestrial prison ship called Dredge 01 crash landed on Earth near Coot’s Bluff, Alaska. Paibok The Power Skrull, the Blood Brothers, Lunatik, and Drax The Destroyer were unleashed upon the Earth. Realizing they were on Earth, a world known to have countless superhumans, the escaped prisoners begin preparations for a hasty escape off-world.

    The dimwitted Drax opposes his fellow escapees, but is murdered when Paibok assumes the form of Thanos (whom Drax was created to destroy), taking Drax off-guard just long enough to kill him. Cammi, a local girl bargains with Paibok and somehow claims ownership of Drax’s body. She is rather surprised however when the body returns to life transformed. Drax had lost much of his power, but he has regained his intellect and received all the instincts and senses of a true warrior.

    In short order, Drax kills Lunatik and one of the Blood Brothers before Paibok fearing for his own safety summons his former captors to take him back into custody. Paibok, Drax, and Cammi are all escorted off-planet aboard the prison ship Dredge 02.


    Events of the Annihilation are chronicled in terms of the Annihilation Day.

    A.D. -7

    The Crunch lying at the center of the universe is the region in which all space expands from. The energies released by the Crunch have been used as a prison for countless millennia to contain criminals and unwanted entities from around the universe. This prison was called the Kyln.

    Thanos of Titan recently visited Kyln, he claimed the chaos mite Skreet as a pet and the seeming first herald of Galactus, the Fallen One as his own herald. Death (in the form of a young girl) appears to Thanos and tells him something wonderful will soon emerge from the Crunch.

    Annihilation Day

    An exceedingly large armada of starships manned by insectoid creatures emerges from the Crunch and lays waste to the Kyln. This large armada, dubbed the Annihilation Wave, follows one simple command: Extinguish life wherever they find it. Their lord, Annihilus has declared war upon our universe as it is always expanding while his Negative Zone is always contracted, which Annihilus sees as an invasion of his territory by our universe.

    Annihilation Day 7

    On Xandar, the Nova Corps convenes to prepare to confront the Annihilation Wave, as they do the Wave attacks, a brief, but fierce battle Xandar is destroyed and all the Nova Corps are dead except one. Nova, the Nova of Earth. Drax and Cammi, who arrived on Xandar the same day are able to escape death with the help of Drax’s finely tuned instincts. As Richard surveys the destruction Xandar he falls to his knees, defeated.

    A.D. 11

    Apparently having fallen into a coma, Nova recovers to the Xandarian Worldmind attempting to contact him. It is in danger of going offline. If the Worldmind be goes offline, the Nova Force itself and all that remains of Xandar’s knowledge and culture would also be lost forever. In order to maintain the Worldmind, Nova allows the Worldmind and all the power of the Nova Force to be downloaded into him.

    Drunk on his newfound power, Nova sets out to destroy the Annihilation Wave, in the ensuing battle, he loses control of the power and nearly kills himself. Recovering in the crater he created when he crash-landed, he encounters the only other known survivors of the destruction of Xandar, Drax and Cammi.

    The trio set out to find salvageable transport off Xandar. After some resistance from the Annihilation Wave’s carrion feeders, they are able to find a Nova Corps transport, which Nova interfaces with to order to open a stargate to escape the Annihilation Wave.

    The ship arrives in orbit of Nycos Aristedes, a planet 7.8 light-years from Xandar and quickly loses power. As the ship begins to fall out of orbit they are saved by Quasar, the Protector of the Universe, who is an old friend of Nova’s.

    They quickly find that Quasar is overseeing a mass-evacuation before the Wave can reach the planet. Quasar manages to talk Nova into assisting despite the objections of the Worldmind and Drax. Nova attempts to open another stargate for the colonists to escape though, but Annihilus sensing the power of the stargate attacks. Nova and Quasar defend the colonists and take the fight to the capital ships of the Annihilation Wave itself. Seeking to stop Annihilus before this invasion gets any worse they attempt to kill Annihilus, but he is ready for them.

    During the brief struggle Quasar is slain and his Quantum Bands are claimed by Annihilus, making him even more powerful. In a desperate gambit, as Annihilus attempts to drain the Nova Force as he had Quasar’s Quantum-power, the Worldmind interfaces with the Wave’s hive-mind, causing the fleet to attack itself. Nova barely escapes with his life and is retrieved by Drax and Cammi and is quickly treated for his wounds. Annihilus tasting defeat for the first time orders a retreat.

    A.D. 12

    Ronan the Accuser of the Kree is taken into military custody to face court martial for crimes against the Empire.

    A.D. 15

    While performing espionage against the Kree, the Super-Skrull learns of the Annihilation Wave’s destruction of several Skrull worlds and its weapon, the Harvester of Sorrows.

    A.D. 17

    Annihilus orders his forces to bring him the heralds of Galactus alive in the hopes of analyzing and mastering the Power Cosmic. To that end, Ravenous, Annihilus’ chief lieutenant assaults the android re-creation of Gabriel Air-Walker a former herald, who had been drawn to the destruction of Xandar, his former homeworld. The Silver Surfer arrives and manages to drive off Ravenous and his Seekers, but not before Air Walker is far too badly damaged to sustain himself. Surfer marks his friend’s passing by creating a black hole where Gabriel fell.

    A.D. 19

    Terrax the Tamer confronts the Seekers, but is captured. Silver Surfer enters Skrull space and surveys the destruction wrought by the Annihilation Wave and vows to stop Annihilus. Amongst the wreckage Surfer finds a former indentured slave of the Skrulls named Tarq Maru who the Surfers bring to safety rather than leaving him to die. During this time Surfer is attacked by more Seekers but despite having them outmatched watches as they are cut down by his fellow former heralds Firelord and Red Shift. Meanwhile, Thanos meets with Annihilus to form an alliance.

    A.D. 20

    Two ancient entities freed by the decimation of the Kyln prison slowly come to grips with how much the universe has grown and changed since their imprisonment and vow revenge upon their captor, Galactus. As these beings, Tenebrous and Aegis discover the Fallen One amongst the ruins, sensing Galactus’ power coursing through his body they capture and question him.

    Silver Surfer, Firelord, and Red Shift deposit Tarq Maru with a refugee fleet departing Skrull space, they are quickly joined by Stardust, Galactus’ current herald, who directs the Surfer to an audience with his former master.

    Annihilus reveals his quest to gain the Power Cosmic to Thanos despite the former’s failure to capture it from the dying body of another former herald, Morg.

    A.D. 21

    When the Silver Surfer arrives to meet with Galactus, his former master reveals the threat of Aegis and Tenebrous and requests that the Surfer rejoin him as his herald. Surfer agrees and Galactus readies the Surfer for the coming conflict with more power just as Ravenous and the Seekers arrive with the advanced scouts of the Annihilation Wave, having tracked the Surfer there, and demands that Galactus surrender to them. Galactus simply unleashes the Silver Surfer upon them and watches with mute interest as he devastates the fleet and elegantly defeats Ravenous, asking that they retreat back to the Negative Zone. Ravenous declines and is nearly killed.

    A.D. 29

    Ronan’s court martial is held, during which the Rigellian Tana Nile gives false testimony of Ronan’s treason and he is summarily stripped of his title of Accuser.

    A.D. 40

    Thanos, drawn by the Fallen One’s summons, meets with Aegis and Tenebrous where he learns of their similar goals, so they strike a deal: If Tenebrous and Aegis defeat Galactus, Thanos will see him imprisoned.

    A.D. 41

    In a pitched battle, the Skrull world of Aks’lo is destroyed by the Harvester of Sorrows, Super-Skrull narrowly escapes death.

    A.D. 46

    Super Skrull asks Baroness S’Bak if he may lead a force against the Harvester itself to destroy it before it reaches Zaragz’na, a former Skrull homeworld. This world also is where Super Skrull’s son lives. S’Bak denies permission. Super-Skrull goes rogue and decides to destroy the Harvester with or without the help of the Skrull Empire. He is joined in this suicidal venture by a young Skrull engineer named R'Kin.

    A.D. 47

    R’Kin and Super-Skrull travel to Earth to meet with the one man in the entire universe who has access to the Negative Zone, Reed Richards, who agrees to give them access to his portal.

    A.D. 48

    Super-Skrull and R’Kin gain access to a Negative Zone vessel at the expense of it crew, who are spaced.

    A.D. 52

    Super-Skrull interrogates a member of the Annihilation Wave and learns that the Harvester of Sorrows was created by Hawal.

    A.D. 55

    They find Hawal on UX-73, a penal colony. Super-Skrull defeats the security forces and then recruits the inmates against Hawal, who had committed many experiments against them against their will. Super Skrull forces Hawal to prepare a weapon that can be used against the Harvester.

    A.D. 65

    R’Kin begins work on a portal back to our universe based upon plans stolen from Reed Richards by Super-Skrull.

    A.D 66

    After Hawal completes the weapon Super Skrull kills him. Praxagora offers Super Skrull her love and he rejects her.

    A.D. 68

    Super-Skrull’s forces travel to our universe and attack the Harvester of Sorrow, but they are betrayed by R’Kin, who blames Super-Skrull for the death of his father. They are captured and brought onboard the Harvester and they are forced to watch as Zaragz’na is destroyed. Desperate for escape and revenge, Super-Skrull hypnotizes R’Kin into freeing them. R’Kin flees as Super Skrull kills Admiral Salo and prepares to destroy the Harvester with the help of Preak and Praxagora. Super-Skrull exacts his revenge upon R’Kin by tearing off his limbs and cauterizing the stumps, then leaving him barely alive tied to a bulkhead within a shuttle. Preak is killed attempting to overload the Harvester’s core. Super Skrull refuses to allow Praxagora to sacrifice herself for his cause, he absorbs the energy he needs from her and kisses her farewell. He destroys the Harvester of Sorrow. Praxagora later recovers his body.

    A.D. 79

    By now most Skrull worlds are either subjugated or destroyed.

    A.D. 88

    A still deposed Ronan exacts Kree justice on the world of Bwokk and then continues his tracking of Tana Nile to the insignificant world of Godthab Omega.

    A.D. 95

    Once at Godthab Omega, Ronan reunites with his longtime friend Korath the Pursuer and former teammate from the Kree Starforce. Korath disregards the ruling against Ronan, knowing his friend to be innocent. Ronan enlists Korath in his search for Tana Nile, but before they can begin they are attacked by two women, Stellaris and Nebula. The battle is brief but brutal as Ronan quickly dispatches their attackers.

    Ronan learns from Korath that the Graces have been attacking settlements all over the planet on behalf of Gamora, the deadliest woman in the universe. Other beings of power seem drawn to Godthab Omega like moths to the flame, among them are Talos and Devos The Devastator.

    Unfortunately, it seems that Talos, Devos, Gamora, and even Ronan are all pawns of the cosmic being Glorian as he endeavors to recreate Godthab Omega into a paradise. Sadly, this not to be as the Annihilation Wave is on its way. Annihilus sensing Glorian in the act of creation directs one of his mates, Eradica, to take a contingent of ships to destroy all life on that world.

    A.D. 99

    Ronan and Gamora are in the midst of trying to kill each other when Korath informs them of the Annihilation Wave’s immanent arrival. They join forces to combat the Wave, but Glorian’s power ultimately defeats the Wave, though the effort leaves him a mental vegetable.

    Tana Nile is fatally wounded in the battle, but she admits to Ronan just before she dies that the Kree ruling House Fiyero instructed her to frame him. Ronan and Gamora prepare the survivors for transport to Kree space to warn the empire about the Annihilation Wave.

    At some point between day 100 and 200 since the Annihilation Wave breached the Crunch, several things happen in which we don’t have an exact date.

    Nova and Drax form the United Front to oppose the Annihilation Wave. The Battle of Tartus Minor during which the United Front is defeated. Peter “Starlord” Quill, Firelord, Stardust, Red Shift, Ronan, Gamora, and, presumably, their followers join the United Front.

    A.D. 183

    While visiting the final resting place of Captain Marvel and his son, Genis-Vell, Phyla and her lover Moondragon are assaulted by Thanos. He takes Moondragon captive leaving her torn ear with Phyla to give to Moondragon’s father, Drax as a message.

    A.D. 204

    The United Front barely holds out against the Annihilation Wave on the Kree world of Daedalus 5, taking Extirpa (another of Annihilus’ mates) prisoner in the process thanks to Firelord.

    A.D. 206

    Extirpa shows to the commanders of the United Front imagery (via the Annihilation Wave’s hive-mind) of Galactus’ and Silver Surfer’s defeat at the hands of Tenebrous and Aegis, declaring the war is already lost to the United Front.

    A.D. 212

    Phyla arrives at Daedalus 5 and tells Drax of Moondragon’s fate. He seems determined to fulfill his purpose. To destroy Thanos even if it means the death of his daughter. When members of House Fiyero attempt to arrest Ronan he kills them. Praxagora arrives with Super-Skrull’s body and tells of his honorable death. Without warning Ravenous invades with Terrax, one of the Mad Thinker’s androids, Paibok, and the Infant Terrible, all controlled by parasites.

    The battle is evenly matched until Ravenous is joined by the Centurions one hundred warriors from many of the worlds conquered by the Annihilation Wave. The United Front’s defeat is quickly turned into a rout when Red Shift and Stardust become aware that Galactus is in the vicinity, the world is lost. In the chaos that follows Super-Skrull is miraculously resurrected by a fallen Firelord. Drax stays behind to get a shot at Thanos, leaving Cammi with the evacuees. Red Shift and Stardust sacrifice their lives to hold off Galactus’ power from destroying the planet long enough for everyone to escape Daedalus 5.

    In the aftermath the United Front disbands in the face of this terrible defeat. Ronan, Super-Skrull, and Praxagora all set out for Hala to overthrow House Fiyero, while Nova plots to kill Annihilus.

    A.D. 220

    Drax manages to get off-world before it is consumed by Galactus’ power (controlled by Thanos), he reaches Eradica and kills her, using the vessel to get closer to Thanos’ ship. Meanwhile, Nova warns Earth of the Annihilation Wave, but intercepts transmissions about how the Superhuman Registration Act has fractured the heroes into a Civil War.

    On Hala, Ronan, Super Skrull and Praxagora discover that House Fiyero has brokered a treaty with the Annihilation Wave, which would shelter Ravenous and the Centurions on Hala. A furious Ronan delivers a crushing blow to Ravenous. Discovering the Supreme Intelligence lobotomized, a merciful Ronan ends its existence. He is quickly declared emperor by the Kree people.

    Moondragon reveals through her scans that Annihilus’ ultimate goal is to end all life in not only our universe but the Negative Zone as well, so that he can rule over the void that remains. No longer interested in helping Annihilus, Thanos releases Moondragon from the parasites, and is about to release Galactus when Drax bursts in and tears Thanos’ heart from his chest as Moondragon helplessly looks on.

    Moondragon explains the circumstances to her father and he attempts to make it right by freeing the Silver Surfer who in turn frees Galactus, who in his rage decimates the Annihilation Wave.

    As the Annihilation Wave finds itself quickly becoming annihilated by an angry Galactus, Nova, Phyla, and Quill confront Annihilus. At first Annihilus brutally overpowers Nova, but the Quantum bands choose Phyla to be their new bearer, turning the tide. Annihilus is weakened enough for Nova to tear his insides out, killing him.

    With the Annihilation Wave destroyed by Galactus and Annihilus dead, the threat is over for the time being.


    A.D. 222

    With Annihilus dead, the parasites controlling Terrax, Paibok, and Delinquent are deactivated. The trio escape to New Xeron, a world ruled by the Space Parasite, whom Terrax kills and then he destroys the planet, reminding the universe that he is a man to be feared.

    A.D. 227

    Stardust reforms after its destruction and returns to Galactus and finds that his former master requires more sustenance to survive. Stardust gives Galactus the energy of the last survivors of its race as a demonstration of its loyalty to Galactus.

    A.D. 268: Armistice Day

    Hostilities are brought to an official end and a treaty is signed. All of Skrull space and large portions of Kree space (including the one time capitol of Kree-Lar) are ceded to Ravenous and the surviving forces of the Annihilation Wave.

    Phyla and Moondragon are reunited. Phyla still bears the Quantum bands and considered following in Quasar’s footsteps and her father, Mar-Vell as Protector of the Universe.

    Cammi seems to have found a new ally in Skreet.

    A.D. 274

    Firelord refuses to accept the terms of surrender and seeks revenge upon the former forces of the Annihilation Wave, though he learns that there are some Centurions who believe that Annihilus had corrupted their purpose. He briefly aids some Centurions on Omina Prime.

    A.D. 277

    On Kree-Lar, Annihilus’ queen dies giving birth to Annihilus’ scion, Annihilus himself is reborn.

    A.D. 281

    The Silver Surfer confronts Aegis and Tenebrous on behalf of his master. Destroying them within the Crunch, nearly dying himself in the process. He is healed by a very impressed Galactus.

    Once healed from his wounds sustained during his battle with Annihilus, Nova continues to act as the sole member of the Nova Corps, putting out brush fires still remaining from the war. Despite the Worldmind’s wishes he has yet to begin to rebuild the Corps.

    Issue Checklist

    Related Story-Arcs

    • Annihilation Conquest - Starting in June 2007, Annihilation: Conquest is the sequel to the Annihilation story-arc.

    Collected Editions

    Related Issues

    Non-U.S. Editions


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