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Warlock and the Infinity Watch #1: Review

Feb 1992
Jim Starlin, Angel Medina

Story Name:


Review & Comments

4 stars

Warlock and the Infinity Watch #1 Review by (July 9, 2021)
This is Jim Starlin's next series after Infinity Gauntlet. This series will wander through the Infinity War and Infinity Crusade events. During IC it will spin-off a side series Warlock Chronicles.

At the previous trial in IG#3 where Eternity asked the Living Tribunal to interfere to stop Thanos with the Infinity Gauntlet wreaking havok on the universe. LT refused then because he claimed that the Titan was only joining the group of cosmic beings, and natural selection would determine the resulting power structure.

The members of the jury then were the same as those here, with the addition of Kronos and the boss Celestial the One Above All. Living Tribunal then ducked out until now while the others went on to confront Thanos in IG#4-6. Eternity and Warlock then met up in Dr Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #36. Galactus took time out to see his Herald Nova off on an adventure of her own starting in Marvel Comics Presents #93.

Most of the jurors are long-standing members of the Marvel Universe except Master Hate and Mistress Love who were invented for the occasion. But some suggest that Love previously appeared in a male form in Defenders #107-109.

Warlock had retreated into his cocoon and re-emerged a few times before his resurrection in Hulk #178, but he'd not died the previous times. However Adam will use the trick several times in the future to return from death.

Next Warlock and Eternity will have a flashback in Warlock Chronicles #2 before Adam continues with next issue and Eternity heads for IW#1.
Galactus goes straight to IW#1.
Epoch will continue in Quasar from #32, bit will keep out of the Infinity events.
Living Tribunal will pop into Q#37-38 before IW#3.
Hate and Love will be in Silver surfer #66 (which occurs before IW).
Order and Chaos wil slip over to Marvel UK for Death's Head II v2 #4 and Warheads #7 before returning for Warlock Chronicles #2 (during IC).
One Above All and Ziran will be back in #19 (during IC).
Stranger will go his own way via Hulk #412.
As will the Watcher via Avengers Annual #20.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Warlock and the Infinity Watch #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This issue follows on immediately from Dr Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #36. At the end of the Infinity Gauntlet event Adam Warlock was left in possession of the Gauntlet with its 6 Infinity Gems. But all that power went to his head and his pals Gamora and Pip The Troll called in DrS for an intervention. They were successful but at the end of DRSSS#36 Eternity took Warlock away for a Cosmic Trial to consider his fitness to wield the Gems.

Eternity has brought him before the triple-faced being known as the Living Tribunal. Present are Master Order and Lord Chaos, Master Hate and Mistress Love, Epoch daughter of the deceased Eon, Uatu the Watcher, Galactus, the Stranger and a Celestial Ziran The Tester. The Gems are still obviously having an effect on Adam because he still considers himself the Supreme Being of this universe and all these lesser beings are obviously conspiring to take the Gauntlet away from him. He could just destroy them all but he'll play along to learn what they intend.

Eternity claims that *he* is the supreme being of this universe and as such the Infinity Gems belong to him. The Tribunal responds that Eternity has made a similar claim against Thanos before (IG#3) and it was dismissed then. But Eternity counters that unlike Thanos Adam isn't mentally competent to handle absolute power. Warlock hits back by saying that the very fact that he is now the supreme being means that he can't be wrong. The jury members here except LT were all defeated and imprisoned by Thanos (during IG) and would still be there if Adam hadn't saved the universe from Thanos. He *earned* this power and he'll surrender it to no-one. So saying he blasts the avatar of Eternity, who is bowed but not beaten. Eternity says this just proves his point - Warlock can't even control his own temper. Adam's anger increases and he broadcasts a blast of energy which sends everyone else flying and damaged ...

... except the Living Tribunal who sits impassive on his throne. Then he clicks his fingers and the others are restored to their places unharmed. Warlock can't understand how his total control of everything, granted by the Gems, has been overridden. The Tribunal now claims that an even higher power has given him the responsibility of being the highest court in this reality. As such he is more powerful than any of them, Eternity and Warlock included. This is something that Adam can't conceive or accept.

Eternity now presents his case in the form of a review of Warlock's life. He was created (as Him in Fantastic Four #66-67) by scientists to be the perfect human towards which humanity was evolving. But at the last instant they tried to destroy him so he lashed out at them and left. Adam protests that their intentions were evil, but Eternity brushes that aside to concentrate on the fact that he had no normal upbringing which would give him the experience necessary (as a minimum) to control all life. But Warlock looks around and wonders (quite rightly) whether any of the others here are any better in that respect.

Eternity continues by mentioning that Him's next action was to try to *take* Thor's companion Sif as his mate (Thor #164-166). Then he fell under the guidance of the High Evolutionary (Marvel Premiere #1) who gave him the name Adam Warlock and the Soul Gem (1 of the 6 Infinity Gems) and a mission to save Counter Earth. This planet had been created by HE to be a better world than the original, but had been corrupted by another of his creations the Man-Beast. Adam tried his best (in MPrem#2 and (Power Of) Warlock #1-8). This saga ended (Hulk #176-178) with his crucifixion and resurrection, which he used to transcend his humanity and become powerful enough to defeat Man-Beast and his minions completely. Eternity questions the sanity of his decision to go that route when he didn't know if his resurrection would work.

Adam claims that he's always used his power for the good of the universe, but Eternity bring up the fact that he once became the evil Magus who went back into the deep past to found the Universal Church Of Truth which he used to despotically rule a thousand worlds. But Warlock stopped all that from happening by travelling into his own future and absorbing his future self's soul into the Soul Gem before he could turn into the villain. (See Strange Tales #178-181, Warlock #9-15 and Avengers Annual #7.) Eternity now argues that he could still become the Magus, but now with the Infinity Gems.

Eternity proposes that *he* should be given control of the Gems. Adam suggests that the Living Tribunal might not agree with that. At the moment LT is supposedly superior to Eternity, but the Gems might reverse that relationship. All the assembled cosmic powers look searchingly at the Tribunal in response to that.

LT states that it is up to him to maintain the balance of powers within the universe. He and AW concur that it is now down to whether LT can actually wrest the Infinity Gauntlet from Warlock. LT declares his judgement against Adam and they face off. But Tribunal says that surely Warlock's mastery of time means that he foresaw this decision. If they fight for possession of the Gems then reality will surely be destroyed, and is that what Warlock the god wants? Adam admits that he did know all that would transpire here, so now they both know that the Tribunal will allow him to go to oversee the dispersal of the Gems and that Eternity will now object ...

... on cue Eternity does protest. Warlock says he's going to select 5 other beings to share the burden with. Eternity demands to make the choices but Adam wishes him away. The other jurors leave, and the Living Tribunal wishes him good luck.

Angel Medina
Terry Austin
Ian Laughlin
Angel Medina (Cover Penciler)
Terry Austin (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Jack Morelli.
Editor: Craig Anderson. Editor-in-chief: Tom DeFalco.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.



Plus: Epoch, Living Tribunal, Lord Chaos, Master Hate, Master Order, Mistress Love, Ziran (The Tester).

> Warlock and the Infinity Watch: Book info and issue index

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