Archrivals

Archrivals: Skrulls vs the Marvel Universe

With Secret Invasion in full swing, take a closer look at those shifty Skrulls as they take on—everybody

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By Jim Beard Consider the lowly Skrulls, how they grumble; they toil at war, also do they shapeshift, yet rarely do they taste the fruits of victory. But boy, do they try. Many number the races throughout the galaxies who'd love to give the Celestials a swift kick in the rear for performing the genetic experiments that led to the creation of the Skrulls. The actions of those god-like beings millions of years ago hold the weight of the Skrulls' actions today—which amounts to tyranny and trouble encompassing the entire Marvel Universe. Witness now a few choice examples of the Skrulls and their inability to simply stay home, put the kids to bed and read a good book.

FANTASTIC FOUR #2 (1962) First to fight the frightening Skrulls, the First Family of the Marvel Universe fought fire with fire to defeat their foes. The wily aliens posed as the FF in an attempt to discredit them before a full-fledged invasion, but Reed Richards figured out their foxy plan and foiled the Skrulls with a tidy bit of subterfuge himself—blasting off to the Skrull homeworld posing as the Skrulls themselves!

AVENGERS v1 #93 (1971) As the monumental Kree-Skrull War kicked off, the Skrulls defeated by the Fantastic Four years before attacked the Vision and then his Avengers compatriots. Still obsessed with posing as the FF, the shapeshifters mounted a fascinating strategy against Earth's Mightiest Heroes but ultimately lost the battle—though one of their own comrades slunk into space with the captured prize of Captain Marvel, the Scarlet Witch, and Quicksilver.

SILVER SURFER v2 #6 (1987) With the horrors of the first Kree-Skrull War never truly forgotten, the two alien races entered into a second titanic struggle, one that soon engulfed entire worlds. While the Silver Surfer agonized over personal problems and new knowledge of the Elders of the Universe, the Kree planned to blow up an entire planet to entrap the hated Skrulls. Foiled at this insidious act, the Kree Supreme Intelligence hunted for a Skrull infiltrator and the Surfer began to be drawn into the tightening web of war.

UNCANNY X-MEN #277 (1991) A long adventure in space for the X-Men culminated in the exposure of their friends the Starjammers as Warskrulls, an elite contingent of Skrulls able to adapt the powers as well as the forms of their targets. The ensuing battle grew more vicious and complicated as the X-Men sought to separate friend from foe, but the tide turned when Professor X threw off his shackles and entered the fray. Victorious over both faux Starjammers and X-Men, the mutants returned to Earth—and even more danger.

NEW AVENGERS: THE ILLUMINATI #1 (2007) In the aftermath of the first Kree-Skrull War, the secret cabal of Marvel Universe heroes known as the Illuminati decided to instill a bit of fear in the duplicitous aliens. Unfortunately the tables turned on the group and Iron Man, Mr. Fantastic, Namor, Black Bolt, Professor X, and Dr. Strange fell into Skrull captivity and minutely scrutinized. The Illuminati managed an escape, but the cost of their time under the Skrull microscope may have paved the way for the ongoing Secret Invasion… SECRET INVASION #5, unveiling the next phase of the Skrulls' master plan, hits stands on August 13, but you can learn more about these evil aliens on Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited.

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