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Archrivals: Nova vs The Sphinx

A feud for the ages spans time and space into the present day

By Jim Beard

Eternal and everlasting, the Sphinx broods over his immortal existence and yearns for the true path to death, but always and forever it eludes him. So too does his greatest enemy, Richard Rider, the Earth hero known as Nova.

The Sphinx and his star-spawned Ka Stone once again meet the Human Rocket on the battlefield in February 3's NOVA #34. Once a wily magician in the court of an ancient Egyptian pharaoh, the Sphinx sees little to lose in his ongoing gambits for death's embrace and his latest sojourn promises much delicious destruction.

For your edification we now open the tomb of past skirmishes between Nova and his ancient adversary.

NOVA #7 (1977)

As if dealing with three of his deadliest foes-the Condor, Diamondhead and Powerhouse-at once didn't constitute a pain in the neck for Nova already, being scrutinized by the seemingly all-powerful Sphinx certainly didn't help! Rich's long nightmare alongside his ancient adversary began and the Human Rocket would never be the same.

NOVA #11 (1977)

Failing to wrestle Nova's powers into submission for himself, the Sphinx obliterated Rich's memories of said abilities. By happenstance, Nova's memories and abilities returned but subsequently his first true physical battle with the Sphinx ended in defeat and disaster.

NOVA #24 (1978)

Once again under the complete control of the Sphinx, Nova sought out his enemy, Powerhouse, for capture. Then, two Earth heroes known as the Comet and the Crimebuster came calling and Powerhouse learned of his Xandarian origins, which figured heavily into the Sphinx and his new ally Doctor Sun's nefarious plans.

NOVA #7 (1994)

In a bid to restore his de-powered Ka Stone and crush the world underfoot, the troublemaking Sphinx devilishly delivered Nova to an alternate Earth in a parallel dimension. There, Rich discovered his doppelganger and a brutally destroyed and depopulated Earth...

NOVA #6 (1999)

Previously humiliated and defeated by Galactus the Sphinx sought to undue a time loop forcing him to relive his sorry life ad infinitum. Nova blocked his foe's attempt to drain life energy from everyone around him and after a blockbusting battle managed to hurl the Ka Stone into the sun, turning the Sphinx to lifeless stone.

NOVA #32 (2009)

Unexpectedly hurled into the presence of Nova's old enemy, the Human Rocket and Darkhawk found themselves fighting aspects of death alongside the Sphinx himself! The Egyptian informed Nova that a contest between the gods had commenced and left the two heroes to ponder new riddles of fantastic creatures, chronal accelerators and old friends returning from the dead.


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