Captain Universe's origins begin with the Beyonders, who created powerful reality-warping devices called Concordance Engines to act as the heart, soul and map of each universe in existence. When the Seventh Cosmos came into being, The Enigma Force was created to combat its polar opposite Knull, the King in Black. For billions of years, the two forces waged war across the cosmos, with the Enigma Force granting its power to multiple champions. This, however, would turn out to be a nearly fatal mistake as The Enigma Force had spread itself too thin by doing so.
Weakened by its own mistake, the Enigma Force's host were slaughtered wholesale, leaving only one to battle Knull alone. Knull and the Enigma Force's long war came to a brief end when the last golden armored host and Knull impaled each other with their respective weapons and crashed onto the volatile homeworld of Gorr, the God Butcher, who violently murdered the last Enigma Force host with Knull's Necrosword.
With its hosts dead and Knull defeated for the present time being, The Enigma Force drew all of its power from the dead hosts back into itself and changed tactics. From that moment on, it would only select a single host to wield its power, so it could avoid another tragedy such as this one. The first of these hosts would come from a far-distant alternate future where Earth died and Mankind had spread his seed across the Heavens, thus resulting in the creation of many divergent races.
These races remained unaware of each other's existence until The Haamin, the descendants of a dozen human colony ships who were forever changed by an unknown force upon reaching the edge of the Galaxy, began a wide-scale genocidal invasion of the worlds inhabited by their fellow off-shoots. The Haamin eventually brought their war to Ithacon, home to Prince Wayfinder, and with their superior technology managed to overwhelm them. Before the end Wayfinder was told by his dying father and an oddball wizard named Delphus that he would never be king, that he would one day see with more than his eyes, that the sword he would bear in his blistered hands would glow with the fire of stars and lead him back to the home-world of their ancestors.
Although he did not wish to give into the prophecy his father and Delphus spoke of, Wayfinder was forced to flee into space on the Star-Seed with its robotic helmsman Alkinoos and travel down the destined path that would lead him to the mythical Sword in the Star, a talking sword embedded in a sentient star that is believed to have once been Galactus, the Devourer of Worlds in days long past. Blinded and imbued with the power of the Enigma Force, Wayfinder decimated the Haamin war machine and ended their reign of terror across the stars.
Creation and Publication
Wishing to bring The Micronauts into the greater Marvel Universe, writer Bill Mantlo and Jim Shooter (who was Marvel's editor in chief at the time) began coming up with ideas on how to do that. Jim Shooter demanded that a superhero-type character be created who could bridge the gap between the Marvel Universe and the isolated world of the Micronauts.
While Bill Mantlo was ecstatic about the idea of creating such a character, artist Michael Golden was not. He believed that the creation of such a character would hurt the comic and the story they were telling.
Nevertheless, Golden's objections were promptly ignored by Shooter and when Micronauts vol.1 #8 came out, readers were introduced to the original Captain Universe. Many were blown away by the concept, others were furious. For over 30 years, Captain Universe was a C-List character until Jonathan Hickman revived the concept (with an entirely new twist) in the 2015 volume of Avengers.
The concept has since then undergone two major retcons with the first revolving around the Enigma Force being a type of symbiote called the God of Light, acting as the polar opposite to the King in Black. The second retcon revised its origins once more, stating that the Beyonders were responsible for the creation of the Enigma Force via their Concordance Engines.
Major Story Arcs
Wayfinder's victory, however, was bittersweet as he and his allies soon discovered that during their quest to find the Sword in the Star, the Haamin had rendered all habitable worlds incapable of supporting life with their destructive powers.
Wayfinder and his fellow Wanderers decided that instead of trying to rebuild what little they had left in a bleak future that only reminded everyone of death and destruction, they would build a new society on Earth in the distant past.
Using Wayfinder's ship, the Star-Seed, the Prince and his followers turned back the sands of time and constructed a grand metropolis in what would one day become Indus Valley/Bahawalpur in the country of India. But their new life on Earth would not be a peaceful one. Wayfinder had already come into conflict with a powerful but young demonic being who would one day become known as Mephisto, and still there was yet another threat lurking just over the horizon.
While Mephisto was still a powerful being in his own right, he was little more than a pest in those days. The true threat to Wayfinder's people came in the form of the Whirldemons and their king, Chaos. The Whirldemons were demonic creatures who had complete and total control over the element of Wind. They saw Wayfinder and his people as intruders upon what they believed was rightfully theirs and, without any mercy, they attacked Wayfinder.
Unable to fight them off, Wayfinder once again called upon the Enigma Force for help. The Enigma Force answered his prayers and those of Wayfinder's people by transforming the former Prince of Ithacon into a being beyond all mortal comprehension. Wayfinder had become the first Time Traveler and was given access to the full might of the Enigma Force that no mortal body could contain without being burned alive from the inside out.
By accessing these new powers, Wayfinder was able to banish the Whirldemons into a lifeless extradimensional void. However, with their new home completely decimated, Wayfinder's people began to despair. Then, Wayfinder realized what he had to do; by completely giving himself over to the Enigma Force, he could create a safe haven for his people, but it would be at the cost of his own life, a cost he decided to pay without hesitation. Thus did Wayfinder bring the Microverse into existence and opened an interdimensional bridge for his people to cross.
Wayfinder then vanished into the Enigma Force and, for the next several centuries, it remained dormant, until a tyrannical madman named Baron Karza crossed the barriers between the Microverse and the mainstream Marvel Universe, took over the body of a demented scientist named Prometheus and launched an all-out invasion upon Earth. Having seen that not even Wayfinder's descendant, Arcturus Rann, would be able to stop Baron Karza in his current form, several Time Travelers came up with a scheme to drive Karza back into the Microverse. The scheme involved transforming a retired U.S. astronaut named Ray Coffin (who had become trapped in the Microverse after falling into a dimensional gateway called the Prometheus Pit) into a being capable of overwhelming Karza.
Of course, the transformation took time, during which all hope seemed lost. By merely swatting the two heroes like flies, Karza had left Arcturus Rann helpless and Princess Marionette, the woman whom Arcturus had fallen deeply in love with, hurt and unconscious. Then, just as Karza reached down to crush them, a superhuman surrounded by a blinding light emerged from the Prometheus Pit and engaged Karza in battle.
Captain Universe, the Avenging Angel and Avatar of the Enigma Force had arrived as their savior. It was not long before Captain Universe overwhelmed Karza and forced the tyrant to separate himself from Professor Prometheus and return to the Microverse defeated. With Karza gone and the threat to Earth now ended, the Enigma Force took back the powers it had given to Ray Coffin and decided to form a new sentient being called the Uni-Power, which would now travel across the Cosmos and would empower pure-hearted individuals during times of crisis so that they, as Captain Universe, could help avert the crisis at hand.
The Hero Who Could Be You
Following this the Uni-Power would bond with Gilbert Wiles, who saved the airplane he was on from terrorists and safely landed it at the airport after it had lost its wing. After sensing Louis Tuttle's possession at the hands of Mister E, a proto-symbiote created by Knull during his early experiments in controlling the living abyss and the very being upon which the Klyntar race would be modeled after, the Uni-Power attempted to bond with Ray Coffin again only to accidentally cause the aging astronaut a heart attack.
With Earth in eclipse and the staff at Cape Canaveral under Mister E's control, the Uni-Power made the decision to instead choose Ray's son Steven as its host, turning him into Captain Universe. Steven, upon learning that Mister E was modifying a space shuttle to emit negatron particles that would turn the Sun into a black star and convert all human life on Earth into an army of shadow-slaves, fought with all his might to stop Mister E. Their battle would take them into space, where Steven would supposedly end Mister E's life by breaching the shuttle's hull, causing it to crash into the Sun.
With Mister E defeated, the Uni-Power made its way to Phoenix, Arizona where it divided its power between Clare Dodgson and her twin sister Ann Stanford-Dodgson, transforming them both into Captain Universe. With the Uni-Power at their command, the twins defeated the criminal thugs that had been holding Ann and her two children Johnny and Jenny hostage. After using the Uni-Vision to peer into one of the thug's minds, Ann and Clare learned that the mastermind behind the criminals was known only as Menace, that he was holding Ann's husband District Attorney Edward Stanford hostage and that the only one who knew more information about Menace was a scumbag by the name of Mike Rooney.
The twins traveled to Rooney's Gym where they attempted to get the information they required but were attacked by Rooney and the gym's patrons, all of whom were fiercely loyal to Menace. Rooney and his goons were easily defeated by the twins, who used the Uni-Vision on Rooney to pry all of the information on Menace he had from his mind. Learning that Menace was using a drive-in theatre as a base of operations, Clare and Ann launched a full assault against the masked crime lord.
After seeing his cronies so easily defeated, Menace fled from Clare, leading her into a trap room that began filling with water. Ann's panicked thoughts reached her sister through the empathic bond they both shared and was freed, with Menace's henchmen defeated they pursued Menace into the Arizona desert, believing Edward to be inside his car, and forced it into a ditch. In a tragic twist, Ann and Clare learned that Menace had not kidnapped Ann's husband Edward but was in fact Edward himself.
Edward revealed that he had been playing both sides of the law for quite some time in order to make a great deal of money, money that had allowed them to live more luxuriously that District Attorney's salary would allow, but when Clare's investigations came to close to unveiling the truth he decided to have her killed. Ann, enraged by her husbands betrayal, knocked Edward out cold and left him to the police. Upon returning to Ann's home, the Uni-Power departed from the Dodgson Twins and headed for New York City.
There it resurrected a small-time burglar named Monty Walsh, who had just been shot dead by Maggia crime boss Guido Carboni for attempting to rob his home, and transformed him into Captain Universe. After exploring what he could do with the Uni-Power, Monty set out on a crusade to destroy Guido Carboni's sphere of influence earning the respect of the media including the Daily Bugle's very own J. Jonah Jameson who saw Captain Universe as a "selfless soldier of decency" unlike that public menace Spider-Man, much to Peter Parker's dismay.
However, during his final battle with Carboni himself, Monty revealed that he planned to not only kill Carboni but use the Uni-Power to take control of the New York underworld. Angered by this blatant misuse of its power, the Uni-Power killed Monty and discarded his corpse in Carboni's office, and watched from the dark corners of the room as the NYPD arrested Guido Carboni for the murder of Monty Walsh.
Upon leaving New York City, the Uni-Power sought out the Hulk as its next host, who had just stormed his way into a U.S. Air Force installation creating mass panic at the base as he raged against the weapons being unleashed upon him. But just as the Uni-Power bonded with the Hulk, they were struck by multiple side-winder missiles. The explosive interference of the bonding process caused Bruce Banner to separate from his alter ego and take on the mantle of Captain Universe.
The Hulk, fearful of being forced to merge with Banner again, attacked the confused Captain Universe leading to a battle of epic proportions between the two. A battle that had lead the frenzied Captain Jamie Custer to believe that the Soviet Union had finally attacked the United States of America with nuclear weapons, prompting him to kill his commanding officer and take control of the nuclear missile silo they had been assigned to. Urged by a fear-born delusion of his ancestor, General George Armstrong Custer, Jamie prepped the nuclear missile to be launched at Moscow.
The Hulk and Bruce continued their battle, with Bruce trying to use the Uni-Power to turn the Hulk back into a human, which turned out to be a fruitless effort as Bruce Banner was no longer part of the Hulk. When the missile finally launched, Bruce followed it into space with the Hulk following close behind to continue their battle on the missile itself, with but moments to spare Bruce decided to ignite the weapon in orbit at the cost of his own life. This act, however, allowed Bruce and the Hulk to merge together with the Uni-Power to become the Captain Universe it had originally intended for them to become: one who possessed the savage strength of the Hulk and the keen intellect of Bruce Banner.
With this truth now revealed to him, Bruce reached out with his mind to render the atomic cloud produced by the missile harmless by forever separating the protons from their nuclei and moving the radioactive atoms down the atomic scale to relatively harmless atoms of lead. With the danger now passed, the Uni-Power left Bruce somewhere in the ocean near a landmass.
From there it would travel to Empire State University, turning Professor Evan Swann into Captain Universe to fight an entity calling itself the Quantum Mechanic, who had been sent by the enigmatic Central Control to dismantle Earth-616 in order to repair a relativity displacement that had thrown the space-time continuum into chaos. As it turned out, the so-called relativity displacement turned out to be the field of physics known as quantum mechanics, for this reason Evan summoned all his might to banish the Quantum Mechanic back to his home office with a stern warning not to return.
The Uni-Power would leave Evan Swann behind and be called back to the Microverse sometime later, fusing Arcturus Rann and Doctor Strange into a composite Captain Universe in order to repair the Spacewall that kept Earth-616 and the Microverse from colliding.
Acts of Vengeance
Following the repairs made to the Spacewall, the Uni-Power returned to Earth, making its way back towards Empire State University when it was pulled into a device created by Professor Max Lubisch designed to tap into extra-dimensional energy sources and subsequently caused it to overload. Upon breaking free of the device, the Uni-Power bonded to Peter Parker who was secretly the costumed hero Spider-Man but found it's voice was unable to reach him and that Peter had only gained the powers of Captain Universe but none of the knowledge that came with it.
Using his newfound powers, Spider-Man defeated the Trapster whom he had lost to only days ago. The emergence of these new powers in Spider-Man completely changed the game being played by Loki, Doctor Doom, Kingpin, Magneto and The Red Skull who had changed adversaries for purpose of thwarting Earth's heroes once and for all. Doom especially coveted the power Spider-Man wield while Magneto believed him to be a particular mutant he had been searching for.
But the existence of these new abilities threw Peter's life into turmoil, his marriage with Mary Jane began to suffer while the citizens of New York came to fear the existence of a Spider-Man with no limits who even openly declared himself a menace after losing his temper with them. The endless string of familiar and unfamiliar villains such as the Brothers Grimm, the Rhino, Shocker, Hydro-Man, Titania, Goliath III, Dragon Man, Magneto and even the Grey Hulk, whom he punched into orbit in his anger.
Everything finally came to a head when Sebastian Shaw, who had learned of Max Lubisch's device and that it was tied to Spider-Man's new powers, had the device converted into a weapon that would drain the Uni-Power from Spider-Man. At the same time, three of his NIMROD prototype Sentinels were fused together by Loki's magic, creating the Tri-Sentinel which set out to destroy a nuclear power plant in New York City. Spider-Man pursued the colossal sentinel when he was struck by Max Lubisch's device, which unlocked the knowledge portion of the Uni-Power that Peter had been unable to access, allowing him to fully assume the mantle of Captain Universe.
What followed was a fierce battle between Spider-Man and the Tri-Sentinel which ultimately ended with its destruction when Spider-Man called forth the full power of the Enigma Force, nearly incinerating himself in the process. With the Tri-Sentinel destroyed and Loki's revenge plot thwarted, the Uni-Power departed from Spider-Man, leaving him unconscious on a beach near the nuclear power plant he had saved.
The Hero Who Could Be You (Continued)
It would return to Manhattan after this and possess Delayne Masters, a student at W.E.B. Dubois High School, whose teacher was being bullied by a local thug named Willie and his friends. Delayne would turn into Captain Universe just as he rushed in to save her and gave Willie a taste of his own medicine, after sensing that Delayne no longer needed its power to bring Willie down, it left.
The Uni-Power would travel to Medina, Ohio and possess two year old Eddie Price who was chosen to deal with the demons Gart and Wrath summoned by his neighbors named Roger and Jane Prince (no relation), a pair of young stockbrokers who were trying to use the demons to manipulate the Stock Market and partake in some illegal Insider Trading. Eddie would make quick work of the two entities by transforming his toys into living beings and then using the Uni-Power to banish the demons with light. After bringing Eddie back home to his parents, the Uni-Power departed for New York City again.
There it would find Elijah Jackson, a former baseball star who was suffering from Lou Gehrig's disease, and was being taken care of by his weary daughter Simone, who was on the verge of giving up on him. When she was waylaid by muggers, The Uni-Power turned Elijah into Captain Universe and gave him his mobility back if only for a short time. After rescuing his daughter, who became desperate and scared when she realized The Uni-Power was leaving, Elijah calmed her down and told her that no matter what happens that he loved her even if he could not show it.
It would then come across Roland Taylor, a schizophrenic man who was on the verge of shooting himself dead with a gun he had acquired. The Uni-Power turned him into Captain Universe and suppressed the dark voices in his mind, allowing him to think clearly for the first time in years. With his newfound power, Roland would set out to repair his relationship with his wife Lucy and begin paying his long overdue rent bills, however his transformation had not gone unnoticed.
A group calling themselves Division U had been tracking The Uni-Power for quite some time in hopes of capturing it and turning it into a weapon that could be harnessed by the U.S. Military. Lead by a woman named Alyssa and accompanied by former Uni-Power wielder Steve Coffin, Division U's Wraith Squad tracked Roland down and attacked him at his apartment. Their fight would spill out into the streets where Coffin, having become obsessed with regaining The Uni-Power, violently attacked Roland.
Roland would escape in the midst of a fight between Steve and Alyssa and end up wandering the city until, much to his horror, his schizophrenia began to kick back up into high gear. The Uni-Power, sensing something was seriously wrong, tried to escape from Roland but the overwhelming might of these fractured personalities in Roland's head was enough to cage it inside of Roland's body. This would prompt the arrival of The Enigma Hunters, a group of specialists from The Microverse whose soul purpose was to hunt down and execute rogue Captain Universes. Roland Taylor's ultimate fate was never revealed and he is assumed dead.
The Uni-Power began to experience memory and power loss and traveled back to Earth in search of a willing human host. This is where it found Gabriel Vargas, who agreed to bond with the entity and travel into The Microverse in search of that which was causing these problems.
But first, the Uni-Power needed to process, replicate and download the powers of several super-humans in order to regain some stability. After bonding with the Hulk, Daredevil and X-23, it went to the Fantastic Four for help. Mr. Fantastic, not one to refuse an opportunity to study The Uni-Power up close, agreed to help The Uni-Power discover the source behind its problems before they were attacked by Gladiator of the Shi'ar Empire, who had orders to take him back to his superiors for imprisonment and study.
The Uni-Power bonded with the Invisible Woman before Gladiator could get his hands on it and a battle ensued. During this time, The Invisible Woman had The Uni-Power bond with Gladiator to make him see the truth about the current dilemma it was facing.
When Gladiator and The Uni-Power found out that Mr. Fantastic was incapable of repairing the problem, Gladiator offered to take The Uni-Power back to The Empire as a guest in the hopes that their scientists could do what Reed could not. The Uni-Power accepted Gladiator's offer and began their journey to the Shi'ar Throneworld of Chandilar. However, as they were leaving Earth's Solar System, Gladiator and The Uni-Power were intercepted and captured by energy-consuming tyrant named Krosakis.
Krosakis used his vampiric-like energy siphoning abilities to force the Uni-Power to bond with him. This gained the attention of the Silver Surfer, who confronted and fought Krosakis and freed the Uni-Power from his control by overloading Krosakis with The Power Cosmic.
The Uni-Power then bonded with the Silver Surfer, who infused The Uni-Power with a portion of his Power Cosmic and managed to repair its memory loss and power fluctuations. In addition to the repairs, bonding with The Power Cosmic put in place several protective barriers that would make it impossible for anyone to tamper with The Uni-Power ever again.
The Silver Surfer then escorted The Uni-Power back to Earth, where it merged with a paraplegic Desert Storm veteran named Gabriel Vargas, whom The Uni-Power had made a bargain with following an incident that had resulted in the death of a police officer and severe injury to the Captain Universe (Ted Simmons) that had preceded Gabriel.
After getting used to the feeling of walking again for the first time in almost a decade, Gabriel, now in the guise of Captain Universe, parted ways with The Silver Surfer and began making his way into The Microverse.
Two years later after the undocumented events of Gabriel's excursion into The Microverse, he resurfaced somewhere within the confines of The Kree Empire or rather what was left of it following The First Annihilation War and attacked a group of Kree Soldiers, whom he thought were slaughtering innocent people. After learning that these so-called innocent people were actually Annihilation Wave sympathizers, Gabriel allowed himself to be taken into custody, and was imprisoned alongside Bug, Deathcry, Mantis, Rocket Raccoon and Groot while awaiting trial. Following the initial conquest of both Kree and Annihilation Wave territories by Ultron and The Phalanx, former Lunatic Legion leader Galen Kor was ordered by Ronan the Accuser to create a low-tech task force capable of successfully infiltrating and destroying a new version of The Phalanx Technophage Virus capable of spreading it further and faster than they would be able to via their standard methods.
Peter Quill, who had accidentally handed the keys to the kingdom, so to speak, to Ultron and The Phalanx when a group of infected Spacknights were allowed to upgrade the Kree Defense Network with a program called "A-Ware" was forced to take on the mantle of Star-Lord once more and was paired up with Gabriel and the others to create the task force Ronan desired.
Together, Gabriel and the rest of the "Dirty Half-Dozen" descended upon Hala without mercy and began viciously fighting their way through the heart of their newly conquered territories against Ultron's minions. In the process, several problems began to rise along the way, the first being the small feud between Gabriel and Deathcry, which continued to escalate until Deathcry went berserk and tried to kill Gabriel who, in self-defense, obliterated Deathcry using The Uni-Power.
Gabriel was mentally traumatized by the event after realizing exactly what it was he had done and went into a shell-shocked state of being, which he remained in until he decided to stay behind and hold off an army of flesh-eating insect-like Phalanx drones while the others made their escape.
Mantis, who had cloaked herself in order to keep from being captured by The Phalanx along with the others, sent a telepathic message to Gabriel, who managed to survive the Phalanx onslaught and told him that he was now their only hope for victory. After meeting back up and conversing with Mantis, Gabriel detached himself from The Uni-Power and sent it on a mission to infiltrate and hack The Phalanx Datacore possessing the cure to the new
Phalanx Virus, which Star-Lord had discovered was airborne and inside the bodies of Hala's inhabitants. The Uni-Power complied and headed towards The Datacore, where it merged with one of The Phalanx Planner Drones and corrupted its programming. The Uni-Power allowed the drone it to think that it was in control of The Uni-Power and that upon accessing the Datacore it would be able to replicate The Uni-Power and create an army of Uni-Powered Phalanx drones, therefore making it the most favored Phalanx of all.
When its fellow Phalanx refused to allow the Uni-Powered Planner Drone to access the Datacore, it became angry and destroyed them all, thus allowing it to enter the Datacore unhindered.However, when this happened, The Uni-Power revealed its ruse and not only retrieved the data it sought but also obliterated the Datacore, thus destroying every bit of data they had collected in the short time since the Conquest of Hala. The Uni-Power then merged with Gabriel once more, allowing him to fend off The Phalanx while his teammates stole a getaway vessel. After returning to base, The Uni-Power shared the data it had collected with The Kree Science Divison and amicably parted ways with Gabriel.
Something Can Stop The Juggernaut
A new Captain Universe surfaced in New York City hellbent on destroying The Juggernaut, who was found comatose in Central Park. A short time later, for whatever reason, Captain Universe placed a drunk driver and his car on top of the arch in Washington Square, which would later be discovered by Spider-Man while investigating The Juggernaut Incident.
After learning that The Juggernaut was still alive following their first incredible encounter, the new Captain Universe stormed the facility where his barely conscious target lay and found Spider-Man talking with The Juggernaut.
The new Captain Universe, who apparently seemed to recognize and address the web-spinner as if they were allies, demanded that Spider-Man stand aside so that he could finally finish what he started by slaying The Juggernaut, which Captain Universe claimed was his "destiny".
Spider-Man attempted to distract Captain Universe, hoping that he could reason with the cosmic avatar but failed and, along with The Juggernaut's unconscious form, was tossed into The Jersey Palisades. Captain Universe quickly pursued his targets and found that The Juggernaut was still alive but not yet conscious. While trying to locate Spider-Man's current whereabouts, the wall-crawler pounced on his back, webbed his face up and tried steering him far away from The Juggernaut.
Captain Universe eventually shrugged Spider-Man off using a full-body energy burst and forced him to hitch a ride on a nearby news chopper and tried to call for back-up only to discover that he had forgot to charge his cellphone. Captain Universe quickly discovered where Spider-Man was hiding and came after him, but was once again webbed in the face, which provided Spider-Man with enough time to swing down into lower Manhattan. However, Spider-Man's escape was short lived as Captain Universe came up from behind the wall-crawler and hammered him through the wall of a private Athletics Club building. Spider-Man managed to outwit
Captain Universe once more by throwing a towel on his face and made his escape. Thanks to information handed out to him by the frightened civilians at the club, Captain Universe was easily able to find out where Spider-Man was going. After arriving at the factory where Spider-Man was hiding, he found himself being covered in more webs.
Captain Universe reminded Spider-Man that his webbing was not capable of holding him, which Spider-Man acknowledged and said that he had wanted to slow Captain Universe down enough so that he could try to pound some sense into him.
But before Spider-Man was able to get anywhere, Captain Universe sensed the eruption of several large tremors deep under the Earth's crust and, after hitting Spider-Man with a powerful psychic blast and wrapping a metal beam around his body to keep him in place so that he would be able to deal with him upon his return, went to check out the rapidly growing problem.
When he found that Earth's tectonic plates were coming undone Captain Universe began to question his true destiny, thus giving The Uni-Power itself a chance to speak and hopefully guide Captain Universe in the right direction. However, before Captain Universe could fully repair the shattered tectonic plates he sensed The Juggernaut's presence, shut out The Uni-Power's voice, erupted forth from underneath the Earth his adversaries stood upon and attempted to kill The Juggernaut once more.
The Juggernaut attacked Captain Universe but was distracted by Spider-Man who said that Cain had to stop because the Captain was needed for something important. Cain didn't care. But before any more action could be taken Captain Universe turned the tables. With both of them in such close proximity, Captain Universe was able to pull Spider-Man and The Juggernaut into alternate dimension of his own making. They quickly found themselves trapped within another dimension of Captain Universe's own making. There, Spider-Man tried to bargain with Captain Universe once more only to fail.
Captain Universe remarked on how foolish Spider-Man was for having sided with The Juggernaut despite the fact that he has tried to kill him. Spider-Man verbally noted that Captain Universe kept referring to their first fight as if he had been there, which Captain Universe said he had been. Captain Universe revealed himself to be William Nguyen, a former employee of a major financial firm that The Juggernaut tore through while attempting to outrun Spider-Man.
He explained that it was The Juggernaut's actions that had set into motion the chain of events which ruined his life. He had lost his job, his girlfriend, was forced to work menial jobs just to survive, was held up by muggers twice and ended up losing his apartment.
Thinking he had nothing to live for, Nguyen journeyed to a bridge tower overlooking the east river and prepared to commit suicide and end the hell his life had turned into.
William continued onward with his tale and revealed that as he was looking down upon the east river, he began to have second thoughts. But before William could turn back, he slipped on the rain-soaked railing and fell to his apparent death. During the fall, though, William prayed for forgiveness and found those prayers answered by The Enigma Force, which imbued William with The Uni-Power and transformed him into the Captain Universe that now held both him and Spider-Man prisoner.
William recalled the events which led to The Juggernaut's unconscious body falling from the sky and crashing into the heart of Central Park. As it turned out, William had used his new-found powers to track down The Juggernaut. When he did, William blindsided The Juggernaut before he was even able to register what exactly was going on and carried him off into space. While attempting to probe The Juggernaut's mind for a weakness he destroyed his helmet. Thus leaving Cain open for a relentless Psi-Assault.
William then elaborated on why he had placed the drunk driver and his car atop a monument in Washington Square and mentioned the events leading up to his explosive arrival at the Inwood Armory. He also mentioned the fractures beneath New York City and that, if The Enigma Force had not diverted his attention to them, he would have already finished Spider-Man off.
The Juggernaut then cut in once more, stating that he did not care how much cosmic power William had at his command and that William would never even so much as dare face him in a real fight. Seeing it as a challenge, William brought Spider-Man and The Juggernaut back to Earth-616, where Spider-Man tried to calm both his former enemy and his newest adversary down and hopefully stop their fight before it could even begin. Just then, the fractures beneath the Earth began to unleash their rage, causing massive quakes and shock waves to rock the very foundations of Manhattan itself.
Spider-Man asked whether William had fixed the fractures or not, to which William replied no and declared that killing The Juggernaut was the only thing that mattered to him. This, of course, deeply offended The Enigma Force who stripped William of his power and transferred it over to The Juggernaut. With the powers of Captain Universe at his disposal, The Juggernaut delved deep into the Earth and located the fractures. Upon inspecting them, The Juggernaut realized that it was he who created the fractures during the course of his month-long journey through the underground following the first confrontation with Spider-Man he ever had. After taking a few moments to get the hang of using a "gentle hand", The Juggernaut healed the fractures and stopped the quakes.
He then returned to the surface where he took a hold of William and prepared to grind his whole body into dust. Spider-Man tried to talk The Juggernaut out of it, saying that he had just become a hero and saved all of New York from annihilation. When William realized that The Juggernaut was now the "hero" and saw that he had become the "villain", William gave into despair and told The Juggernaut to kill him seeing as William no longer had anything to live for. After several moments of silence, The Juggernaut dropped William to the ground and said that he was sorry for everything. The Enigma Force then commended The Juggernaut for his work and sent The Uni-Power on its way.
When Chaos, King of the Whirldemons and Captain Universe's arch-nemesis, escaped from his extra-dimensional prison, The Enigma Force contacted X-23, Spider-Man and The Invisible Woman from "somewhere else" in time and space and revealed to the three heroes just how great a threat the Whildemons would pose to Earth should Chaos free them from imprisonment.
After revealing Chaos' origins, it sent Spider-Man and The Invisible Woman back to Earth-616 so it could chat privately with X-23, who taught her about how to live life and that all people were made of stars, which would later prove to be a useful bit of knowledge for her final showdown with Chaos.
When X-23 went to the prison where the Whirldemons and Chaos were trapped in, she transformed into Captain Universe and tore through The Whirldemons with ease. She then took her fight directly to Chaos and beat him, but instead of continuing to fight a battle that would last forever, she used the power of the stars to seal the dimensional void once again and returned to Earth-616.
Before parting ways, The Enigma Force appointed X-23 the new future heir to its mighty power, clearly suggesting that in the far-distant future she will become The Enigma Force just as Prince Wayfinder before her did.
Deadpool vs. Thanos
Deadpool was transformed into Captain Universe at the behest of Eternity in order to stop Thanos from using the power Mistress Death had given him to destroy all of actuality and managed to succeed in destroying Thanos, albeit temporarily, and saved the universe from destruction.
Becoming an Avenger
After its encounter with Deadpool, the Uni-Power merged with a comatose woman named Tamara Devoux, who had been in a car crash with her daughter ten years ago, and answered the call to become an Avenger at the behest of Captain America and ventured to Mars where they faced off against Ex Nihilo, Aleph and Abyss. After recognizing Captain Universe as "The Goddess", Ex Nihlo and Abyss stopped their assault and submitted themselves to "her" will.
Aleph, a mechanical being designed purely for the purpose of destroying worlds, on the other hand had refused to acknowledge "her" claims and instead lashed out at "her" but it was for naught. With a simple touch, Captain Universe eradicated Aleph and restored order. After countless hours of study, the Avengers were unable to figure out why The Uni-Power was here let alone why it had taken Tamara on as its host, so they instructed Shang-Chi to try and coax Tamara out from deep within Captain Universe so they could get a better sense of what was going on.
Unfortunately, the meeting with Tamara didn't go as well as Shang-Chi hoped and she receded back into the recesses of Captain Universe's mind who revealed that it had chosen Tamara to be its host because she was broken and dying just as it was. When Shang-Chi and Captain Universe went to meet up with Iron Man, they found him diligently at work trying to decipher the language the new "Adam" or "Blackveil", a human created by Ex Nihilo, was speaking.
Captain Universe, who knew how to speak the unknown language, corrected Iron Man's erroneous translation of the language and revealed that "Blackveil" was actually the Nightmask of Earth-616 who, like all Nightmasks, heralded the coming of The White Event. But unlike other White Events, this one had been fired at Earth-616 just as the Superflow (a heavily monitored Multiverse-spanning network of weaponized stations that created White Events like the one that gave birth to the heroes of the New Universe) had completely collapsed and therefore did not include the proper data for choosing a Star Brand, Justice, Cipher, Spitfire, etc.
Instead, the "Last White Event" as Nightmask called it, had annihilated a college after imprinting the Star Brand on a young man who did not meet any of the requirements the White Events usually looked for in a Star Brand wielder. A young man who had been ignored his whole life and could be easily seduced by the overwhelming power of the Brand. Once the location of the Brand's landing had been found by Nightmask, Captain Universe accompanied him and the rest of the Avengers "heaviest hitters" to the site where they found the new Star Brand kneeling at the center of the carnage and chaos created by the Last White Event.
The Captain Universes
It is said that at all times on Earth there is a Captain Universe to help avert a crisis in the making.
A majority of these Uni-Power Wielders have never been seen before, though there are a few on record. The last known hosts were Eddie Brock and his son Dylan, the latter of whom had acted as a conduit for the Enigma Force up until his father was chosen to become Captain Universe in order to defeat the Enigma Force's dark opposite Knull, the King in Black.
Here are the known wielders from across the Multiverse:
Powers and Abilities
Captain Universe is empowered by The Uni-Power which derives its limitless array of abilities from The Enigma Force, however these abilities tend to manifest differently in each host primarily due to the fact that it is a "situational power" and grants the host what it needs to overcome the crisis at hand.
There are many different incarnations of Captain Universe spread out across The Multiverse, while he is not a major character like Captain America or Spider-Man, he has played major roles in several different realities.
See the Universe Boy page for more information.
In this universe, Captain Universe remained bonded to Peter Parker and for a time, played host to an army of Spider-Men from other universes until he was killed at the hands of the Inheritor called Solus, who devoured both the Enigma Force and his soul. Whether the Enigma Force of Earth-13 lives on in Solus is not known.
The Captain (of Nextwave fame) had gained The Uni-Power in this reality and was spirited away to another, darker Earth on the "Nightside" of the Universe so that he could be taught a lesson in humility.
Quasar (Wendell Vaughn) merged his Quantum Bands with The Uni-Power in order to combat The Phoenix Force-empowered Serpentine Elder God known as Set and used the legendary Eye of Agamotto to imprison themselves within where the two would fight for all of Eternity.
The Quasar of Earth-616 briefly witnessed these events while traveling through The Multiverse in search of alternate versions of The Living Laser that should not exist.
Earth-1610 (Ultimate Universe)
On Earth-1610, Captain Universe is a powerless lunatic who looks like comic writer Jonathan Hickman. He was seen being lead to a jail cell through the Brooklyn 70th Precinct Police Department raving about how the destruction of the Multiverse was his fault and that the blame should be placed on him.
Earth-9997 (Earth X)
On Earth-9997, Captain Universe merged with the soul of Captain Mar-Vell and started a revolution against Mistress Death. The power later merged with Reed Richards and became the new Eternity of Earth-9997.
The Uni-Power remained bound to Spider-Man in this Universe and began turning him into a cold, selfless entity with no emotion whatsoever and an overwhelming sense of duty. An act that nearly resulted in the destruction of Peter Parker's marriage as well as other parts of his old life.
After a misunderstanding fight with Thor and a confrontation with a Doombot that resulted in the death of the first Captain Universe ( Ray Coffin), Peter came to realize that The Uni-Power should never belong to one individual and used an energy siphoning device brought by the Doombot to bound all life on Earth with the Uni-Power, thus bringing true peace to the world.
Nine months later Mary Jane Parker gave birth to her and Peter's daughter, May Parker, who exhibited not only her father's abilities but those of Captain Universe as well, indicated by her pale white eyes.
Earth-22519 (Law Enforcement Squad)
In this reality, the Uni-Power created its own physical form rather than imbue someone else with its powers and was a member of the government sanctioned superhero group called The Law Enforcement Squad who were all transported to Earth-616 during the crisis that unleashed the being called Abraxas into the Multiverse. Having mistaken the Fantastic Four for the U-Foes, Captain Universe and his allies engaged them in battle but was convinced by Mr. Fantastic that there had been a mix-up of grave proportions.
Before he could confirm the truth with his allies, Nova (Frankie Raye) struck Captain Universe down, forcing him to abandon his physical form and enter a dimension that existed between and beyond all universes so that he might privately speak with Mr. Fantastic and his universes Doctor Druid. Captain Universe explained the nature of the Multi-Eternity which held the Multiverse together and revealed Abraxas' identity to the two heroes before disappearing without a trace.
In Other Media
- Throughout the years Captain Universe has made many video game appearances in the form of an optional costume for Spider-Man in the games Spider-Man, Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2, the Nintendo Wii version of Spider-Man: Web of Shadows and then as a Gamestop pre-order bonus DLC for all versions of Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions.
- That all changed when Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds was released, instead of being one of Spider-Man's alternate costumes, Captain Universe was now one of X-23's uniforms. Later, when Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 came out, Captain Universe became one of The Hulk's alternate costumes as well.
- In the PS1 Spider-Man games, the Captain Universe uniform gave the player invulnerability and unlimited webbing, though like all of the other costumes in the game it had no impact on the story unlike the Captain Universe DLC for Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions. The Captain Universe DLC included not only four versions of the "Cosmic Spider-Man" uniform (three of which were new takes on the costume) but also added a new special ability for the four Spider-Men to use in-game while wearing their universe-specific version of the costume.
- A small backstory explaining The Uni-Power's behind-the-scenes involvement with the game's story and small bits of trivia about Spider-Man's connection to Captain Universe also came as part of the whole package. Though the DLC was originally a pre-order bonus from Gamestop, it was later made available to the general public through the Playstation Store and the Xbox Live Marketplace. Captain Universe later returned as an alternate costume in the games Spider-Man: Edge of Time and Amazing Spider-Man. Captain Universe (Tamara Devoux) is also a playable character in the new Lego Avengers video game.
- Several iterations of Captain Universe were featured in the HeroClix figure game, including the Cosmic Spider-Man, Cosmic Daredevil, Cosmic Hulk and Tamara Devoux versions of the character.
- The Cosmic Spider-Man version of Captain Universe was featured in the Minimates line from Diamond Select.
- The Cosmic Spider-Man version of Captain Universe was featured in Hasbro's Marvel Legends line as part of the Vulture Build-a-Figure wave. The figure also came with two alternate heads, one of which depicted an unmasked and bearded Peter Parker, and the other of which depicted a more classic Captain Universe visage.