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Stranger (Cosmic Being) (Earth-616)

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Quote1 An awkward and distasteful coda. And yet I can't seem to summon the requisite ire. Can it be that, at some level, I'm actually pleased? After all, the best experiments are those whose results are entirely unexpected. And certainly I never foresaw all those eons ago that this one would end, not in destruction...but in a family. Quote2
-- Stranger src
 

Early Life

The origins of the Stranger is blurry, and the subject of many stories, as well as many of his claims.[2]

Gigantian Uni-Mind

By his own account, the Stranger was a composite being who possessed the combined strength and intellect of the billions of humanoid beings who once lived on the planet Gigantus, an ancient world in the Andromeda Galaxy whose size approached the limit at which a planet could exist before fissioning into a sun. Gigantus, the home of a highly advanced and pacifistic people, was the target of the imperialistic race of Eternals, who decided to destroy Gigantus when it proved too big to conquer. Before their world's destruction, however, a vast fleet of Gigantians escaped to retaliate against their attackers.[3]

After destroying Eyung, the Gigantians in some as yet unknown way melded their minds into a single being, apparently to one day combat the Eternals' similar composite entity, the Overmind. It is not yet known what the process of this merger entailed: whether the composite forms body was an artificial organic construct or one of the Gigantians’ bodies enhanced to be a suitable receptacle for his race’s mental and physical might. This being, later to become known as the Stranger, existed for some eons, engaged in the same pursuit of knowledge that had engaged his race.[3]

He later admitted (or claimed) that he in fact found that composite being, accidentally killed him, and vowed to fulfill his role, but that he still suspected he could be a Gigantian himself.[1]


Stranger (Cosmic Being) (Earth-616) from Astonishing Thor Vol 1 2

The Stranger creating the Living Planets

Ego the Living Planet

One of the many creations of the Stranger was Ego the Living Planet. He granted him consciousness. A second world was also created known as Alter Ego, but he was given to the Collector. The Stranger planned to one day set his two creations against each other to see who was the stronger.[4] Ego existed within the so-called "Black Galaxy," which is probably actually a dark nebula near or within the Milky Way Galaxy.[5] Ego's birth was also allegedly accompanied of Id, the Selfish Moon's one.[6]

X-Men Vol 1 11

X-Men

The Stranger happened upon Earth as he was attracted by the sudden proliferation of superhumanly powered beings on it. Investigating some of these beings, the Stranger encountered Magneto and his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, and the original X-Men. The Stranger took Magneto and the Toad with him to his home-base planet to study,[7] although the Stranger left this planet sometimes. Making use of one of these chances, Magneto escaped back to Earth, but Magneto's enemy Professor X managed to telepathically contact the Stranger, who went to Earth and re-captured Magneto.[8]

Apparently from his observations of Magneto and the Toad, the Stranger concluded that the powers in the process of development by the denizens of Earth would be misused and, in time, become a threat to other worlds. Thus, he journeyed to Earth in two occasions for the express purpose of limiting Earth’s population through a random purge. On each of these occasions, he was convinced by the selfless actions of Earth beings (the Hulk[9][10][11] and scientist Al Harper, a friend of the Silver Surfer) the Earth had the potential for good. After his second attempt to destroy Earth, the Stranger declared it safe from any future reprisals.[12][13][14]

Thor

Abomination appeared on the Stranger's Labworld after being defeated by the Silver Surfer. Realizing he was no match to the cosmic being; he used the Strangers scanner to teleport Thor to the planet for help. Thor helped Abomination and freeed all the Strangers subjects. The Stranger returned and Thor was no match for him. He escaped but was trapped as Donald Blake he is captured by Abomination who planned to take over the planet. He became Thor again and the Stranger returned for revenge. Thor used his hammer to reverse time and stops Abomination from ever summoning him to the world.[15]

Since that time, the Stranger employed his vast powers on behalf of the Earth. The first of these incidents pitted him against his ancient enemy, the Overmind. The Stranger used his superior power to imprison the Overmind on a mole of dust.[3]

The Gardener

The Stranger in possession of one of the six Infinity Gems attacked Adam Warlock and Spider-Man in the Blue Area of the Moon to claim Adam's Soul Gem, the Gardener used his Time Gem's power (still believed another Soul Gem at the time) to combat the Stranger, driving him away. Believing that he "corrupted" the gem by its use as a weapon, the Gardener abandoned it on the Moon.[16]

The Champions

Not much time later the Stranger busted into the Champions of Los Angeles headquarters claiming to be there to save them for a Null-Life Bomb he created. Not remotely trusting him, the Champions fought the Stranger until the Null-Life Bomb began to expand and engulf Regina and the Stranger. The Champions finally listened to the Stranger's case and offered to help do whaterver was needed to disarm the bomb, so the Stranger teleported them to a place that Hercules recognized from the time he invaded it, the realm of Kamo Tharn.[17] They were sent there to retrieve his runestaff, which the Stranger didn't realize was already on Earth since Hercules helped steal it earlier. Darkstar noticed a trace of the portal Stranger used to send them there and used her darkforce to re-open it and return to Earth. It turned out the runestaff was left sitting in the hospital broom closet after it was used to resurrect Jane Foster. Once it was retrieved, Stranger guided Darkstar to use it to accelerate the Null-Life Bomb's expansion until it engulfed the universe. Since the bomb had expanded beyond its limit to contract and destroy, it instead dissolved into nothingness. With the Champions returned, the Stranger departed peacefully.[17]

Stranger's Gem was later stolen by Thanos in his first attempt to collect the six Gems to create a single synthetic Soul Gem and annihilate the stars of the universe with its power.[18]

The third time he came to Earth was to thwart a plot by the Olympian god Pluto.[19]

Infinity Gauntlet

As well, the Stranger has gotten himself involved in a number of cosmic events. When Thanos' usage of the Infinity Gauntlet proved to be out of control, he was one of the many cosmic beings to confront the mad Titan.[20]

The Avengers

The Avengers were attacked by the Stranger when he was looking for the Scarlet Witch. During the fight the Wasp was injured.[21] The Stranger tracked Scarlet Witch down while she was on a honeymoon with the Vision. The group found the Stranger's inconsistent abilities a mystery until their final confrontation aboard his ship where, thanks to the Beast's ingenuity, it was revealed that the Stranger was actually Toad in disguise. Easily defeating the Toad, the Avengers learned that following Toad's last encounter with the Avengers, he traveled back to Labworld and stole technology in order to get back at Wanda for turning down his advances.[22]

Captain Marvel

He had a showdown with Captain Mar-Vell aboard the O.K. space station.[23]

Silver Surfer

The Elders of the Universe tried to kill Galactus.[24] The Silver surfer learned the origin of the Stranger from the Living Tribunal.[25]

Nebula

The Stranger attempted to learn where Nebula had hidden his Infinity Union device.[26] The Avengers spread out to search for Nebula's ship. Unfortunately, Spider-Man came across it and inadvertently activated it, granting Nebula incalculable power.[27] Nebula, given godlike powers by the Infinity Union, played with her new toys: the Stranger and the Avengers. The Avengers distracted Nebula long enough for the Stranger to learn a way to strip Nebula from her new found powers. He succeeded and Nebula was defeated. Unfortunately, Nebula made a clean get away and the Stranger returned the Avengers to Earth.[28]

Kosmos

The Stranger and a group of ther cosmic being were forced to deal with Kubik's new creation being, Kosmos.[29]

Quasar

The Watchers broke their own rules and asked the Stranger to stop a virus, Quasar used this time to free his experimental subjects trapped on Labworld.[30]

Infinity Watch

After saving the universe from Thanos and ultimately acquiring his prize, the Infinity Gauntlet, Adam Warlock found himself on trial, judged by the very cosmic beings, including the Stranger, who supported him in the conflict. Presiding over the trial was the Living Tribunal, and the one making the case that Warlock was not fit to be the supreme master of the universe was Eternity. Eventually, the Living Tribunal ruled against Warlock, and he was forced to surrender his godhood by separating the six Infinity Gems.[31]

Anthropomorpho

Quasar and the Contemplator encountered Anthropomorpho, who could create M-Bodies of the Manifestations such as the Stranger.[32]

Bi-Beast

Controlled by the Stranger, the Bi-Beast intended to detonate a powerful bomb. While Doc Samson was easily repelled by the Bi-Beast, the Hulk and She-Hulk joined forces and were able to defeat him.[33]

Quasar

He had also allied himself with Skeletron and the Starblasters.[34] In an attempt to gain control of the Star Brand only to trap the now-Star Brand-empowered Skeletron in the now lifeless New Universe while shunting its Earth into orbit around his Labworld where it remains to this day.[35] The Stranger remained an enigmatic being, studying the phenomena of the universe for unknown reasons and acting toward other living beings with unfathomable motives.[36]

Four Muses

When reality was altered creating Eurth; he became a member of the Four Muses.[37][38]

Mutants

The Stranger stated he had been manipulating the evolution of the Mutants of Earth for decades. He wished to use their powers against the other cosmic beings and/or replacing them as they were to become Eternity and the sole survivor of the universe.[20] This statement is controversial considering he also stated to have visited Earth only recently.[39]

Beyonder

He posed as the Beyonder to continue his studies. Creating his own Battleworld, he forced two groups of heroes and villains to battle each other.[20]

Alter-Ego

Ego flew too close to the Earth, causing atmospheric disruptions and forcing Thor to investigate the disturbance. As Thor was about to stop Ego, he was interrupted by the Stranger, who told Thor that he could not be allowed to interrupt Ego's destiny, revealing that Ego was his creation.[40] Thor tried to deter him from reaching his final destination, the Collector's Museum. Ego learned his true origin and that he had a brother; Alter-Ego, who had been imprisoned by the Collector.[41] Alter-Ego was created to despise his brother as the Strange wanted to learn who was superior through battle. Ego reluctantly defended himself hurting his brother, but Thor stopped him before the final blow could be given. The remains of Alter-Ego fell into Ego's orbit effectively becoming a moon and together they traveled the universe.[42]

Stranger (Earth-616) from Avengers Assemble Vol 2 8

Trapped in the Cancerverse

Thanos

Accessing the power of a stolen Cosmic Cube, Thanos summoned a gathering of the astral versions of some cosmic heavyweights, including the Stranger, the In-Betweener and members of the Elders of the Universe. While Thanos briefly taunted them with the powerful item, the Collector coveted it, seeking to break a trade. Tired of the general exchange, Thanos turned the Cube on the other entities, seemingly wiping them from existence.[43] However, they were only banished to the Cancerverse, where eventually they found the Avengers, who like them were banished after they tried to defeat Thanos, who had lost control of the Cosmic Cube. The Stranger and the other cosmic entities helped the Avengers escape the Cancerverse and, after the heroes defeated Thanos, they handed him over to them as part of their deal. The cosmic entities left with Thanos as their prisoner, the Avengers plan to confront the General in charge of Project Cosmic.[44]

Howard the Duck

After Howard merged with the Nexus of All Realities,[45] the Stranger kidnapped him from Linda and Shocket's spaceship while they were trying to invade the Collector's planet. Planning to keep Howard contained inside his spaceship in order to use him as a gate to create an entirely new universe - which was now possible due to the Nexus having bonded with a living being - where he would conduct his experiments without interference, the Stranger destroyed the ship from which he abducted Howard for fearing his friends would ruin his plans, not knowing they had already been teleported away from there.[46]

Power Grid [50]
Intelligence
Strength
Speed
Durability
Energy Projection
Fighting Skills
 2
* Teleporter

Powers

Cosmic and psionic powers which approach those of a moderately nourished Galactus[47][48] and probably rival the Watchers, thus putting him above Odin and Zeus at their peak, and above the Grandmaster. The Stranger can tap into ambient cosmic energy to generate force blasts with large concussive force, create shielding of great sturdiness, engage in matter manipulation, size alteration, display great psionic abilities, planetary level teleportation across vast distances, including between universes/dimensions and achieve numerous other effects, well beyond the limits of Earth science. It would appear his great power will not avail him in parallel dimensions, especially mystical ones, because being present in such a place, tends to weaken his connection to cosmic energy. This is how Pluto was able to overwhelm him, while they combated each other in Pluto's native dimension. His power level, should also theoretically, be greater than beings such as Mephisto and Dormammu, while on a neutral plane, in keeping with his status as a cosmic entity, and not a mere alien scientist. However, his power is certainly lesser than the In-Betweener, Celestials, and the cosmic cube artifact and beings. Although his quest for knowledge indicates that the Stranger is not omniscient in the literal sense, he does possess formidable cosmic knowledge and expertise. Indeed, the Stranger is endowed with a certain type of cosmic awareness, since he analyzed the Earth from a distant point in space,[9] was part of the group of entities that opposed Thanos during the Infinity Gauntlet saga,[47] and has appeared alongside other Cosmic entities during the trial of Adam Warlock.[31]




  • The Living Tribunal once asserted that if he had a fourth face opposed to the one of equity, it would be the Stranger's,[25][2] or that the fourth face had become the Stranger.[49]
    • The Stranger angered to those claims, refusing to be related to anyone.[25]
  • The Stranger's Labworld was a large planet where The Stranger conducted his many experiments. Most of these experiments used unwilling sentients as test subjects.
  • Labworld's one known moon was the Earth of the New Universe.
    Stranger Marvel Value Stamp

    Marvel Value Stamp #74

  • The Stranger was one of the characters featured in Series A of the Marvel Value Stamps issued in the 1970's.

Discover and Discuss

Footnotes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Quasar #16
  2. 2.0 2.1 All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #11
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Fantastic Four #116
  4. Astonishing Thor #2
  5. Thor #228
  6. Deadpool Vol 2 #34
  7. X-Men #11
  8. X-Men #18
  9. 9.0 9.1 Tales to Astonish #89
  10. Tales to Astonish #90
  11. Tales to Astonish #91
  12. Silver Surfer #5
  13. Silver Surfer #12
  14. Silver Surfer #15
  15. Thor #178
  16. Marvel Team-Up #55
  17. 17.0 17.1 Champions #12
  18. Avengers Annual #7
  19. Marvel Two-In-One Annual #5
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 Infinity Gauntlet #3-6
  21. Avengers #137
  22. Avengers #138
  23. Captain Marvel #42
  24. Silver Surfer Vol 3 #27-30
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 Silver Surfer Vol 3 #31
  26. Avengers #316
  27. Avengers #317
  28. Avengers #318
  29. Fantastic Four Annual #23
  30. Quasar #14-16
  31. 31.0 31.1 Warlock and the Infinity Watch #1
  32. Quasar #37
  33. Incredible Hulk #412
  34. Quasar #55-56
  35. Quasar #57
  36. Starblast #2-4
  37. Avataars: Covenant of the Shield #1
  38. Avataars: Covenant of the Shield #3
  39. All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #11; Stranger's entry
  40. Astonishing Thor #1
  41. Astonishing Thor #3
  42. Astonishing Thor #5
  43. Avengers Assemble Vol 2 #7
  44. Avengers Assemble Vol 2 #8
  45. Howard the Duck Vol 6 #1
  46. Howard the Duck Vol 6 #3
  47. 47.0 47.1 Infinity Gauntlet #5
  48. Thanos Annual #1
  49. All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #6; Living Tribunal's entry
  50. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z hardcover Vol. 11



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