One-part cosmic superhero, one-part Space Jesus, one-part cocoon -- Adam Warlock is as awesome as they come. Amassing over 50 years of heroic exploits that have rocked the cosmos from here to Knowhere and everyplace in between, he's a veritable (Infinity) rock star.
He's basically the ideal template of a human that we should all strive to be, want to be with, or be fathered by. Best of all, he wears a cape. Have you ever met someone in a cape you couldn't trust? Exactly.
Though often overshadowed by his more flashy iron-suited, tights-wearing, adamantium-claw-snikting counterparts, Adam has risen as one of the most influential characters in all of Marvel.
In fact, no character, not even Thanos the huge-jawed Mad Titan himself, has been more intricately linked to the Infinity Stones since they first appeared on the galactic scene. (Thanks in no small part to the master of all things Infinity, legendary writer Jim Starlin.)
So anyone who is even mildly interested in Infinity Gauntlets, colorful gems, the Guardians of the Galaxy, destroying the universe, restoring the universe, good hair, or the future of the MCU, would be wise to brush up on everyone's favorite man-god.
Let the conflict begin! Here are the 15 Things Even True Fans Don't Know About Adam Warlock.
15 The Soul Gem Is Kinda His Thing
While the location of the Soul Gem has remained one of the greatest mysteries in the MCU, it's location was always known in the comics -- Warlock's forehead.
When High Evolutionary created Counter-Earth, he did so by using the Infinity Stones. When he sent Warlock there, on-top of bestowing "Him" with a new name, he also gave the super-being the green Soul Gem to assist in defending the realm against Man-Beast.
For those who don't know, the Soul Gem provides the power to control reality, specifically allowing its user to manipulate the souls of everyone in the universe, dead or alive.
Sporting the gem in his forehead like a boss, Warlock used it to enhance his powers on Counter-Earth.
Ever since then it has been a defining feature of his character and remained with him for most of his comic career.
14 He Has Wielded the Infinity Gauntlet
Following years of being dead (and off the page), basking away as an inter-dimensional spirit, Warlock returned once again to fight Thanos, who had been resurrected by the Mistress Death.
In return, the Mad Titan collected the stones into an epic power glove that he nicknamed the Infinity Gauntlet, and with a snap of his fingers erased half the universe. Space Jesus assemble.
Adam's grand revival in 1991 was helmed by writer and Thanos co-creator Jim Starlin, who first broadened Adam's horizons during the Magus Storyline.
This time around Starlin has Warlock lead a group of Earth's mightiest heroes in battle against Thanos, whose overconfidence ends up being his undoing.
The saga concludes when the Infinity Gauntlet finds its way onto the hand of Adam and he transforms into God, promptly putting an end to the conflict like a boss.
13 He's Basically Best Friends with Thanos
After Infinity Gauntlet, things got weird for Adam. He gives up Godhood, disperses the stones, goes insane, physically manifests his evil and good thoughts as a new Magus and entity named Goddess, respectively, Man-Beast returns, and the Infinity War breaks out, led by new Magus using the Infinity Gauntlet.
Even more bizarre, through nearly all of it, Adam relied on the help of his sworn-enemy-turned-good-pal, Thanos.
Take the Infinity Crusade, when Goddess tries to destroy every living being in existence. Thanos, who Adam willingly gave the Soul Gem to, plays an intricate role in saving the universe.
Most recently in Infinity Revelation they go on some weird intergalactic buddy road trip through space and time to demolish alternate versions of one another in order to save one another, because that's what friends are for.
12 He Was a Founding Member of the Guardians of the Galaxy
After several other Infinity related adventures, and a brief interlude to revive his best friend Thanos (now dead) by spinning a regenerative cocoon for the Mad Titan, Adam Warlock himself went back to cocooning.
Then 2007's Annihilation: Conquest occurred and he was revived to help fulfill his role as the prophesied Savior of the Kree Empire.
His resulting triumph, aided by a misfit group including Star-Lord, Rocket Raccoon, Drax, Phyla, Gamora, Mantis, and Groot, showed the obvious need of a team to deal with galactic-level threats. Thus the modern Guardians of the Galaxy were formed.
Adam was a vital member of the team until an unfortunate spree of time jumps brought about the return of Magus (yet again) which resulted in Star-Lord being forced to end Adam, ending both any risk of him turning into his future evil self and his tenure as a Guardian of the Galaxy.
11 He Wasn't Originally Called Adam Warlock
The cosmic character who would come to be known as Adam Warlock was created by the legendary duo Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. (Seriously, were you expecting anyone else?)
Introduced simply as "Him," he first appeared in 1967's Fantastic Four #66-67 as a world-domination experiment go wrong.
As an artificially created being, "Him" was the brainchild of a bunch of mad scientists known as The Enclave. Their goal was to create the perfect human as a template for a new race who would one day rule the Earth.
As they were wont to do back in those days when someone tried to conquer the planet, the Fantastic Four intervened and put an end to the scientific cadre's diabolical experiments.
Though not before "Him" had a chance to pop out. Or should we say hatch.
10 He Wasn't Born, He Was Formed… in a Cocoon
One of Adam Warlock's most famous characteristics is that he was created in a cocoon. Fittingly, The Enclave's scientific lair was known as The Beehive, where they developed their supernaturally strong man-god inside a silk-like gestation pod.
Impressively in his first appearance, Adam only really appears in two frames, spending the majority of his entire two-issue intro in the pupal stages of transformation.
After finally emerging from his cocoon, the golden chested "Him" immediately senses how corrupt and effed up his creators are, promptly destroys their complex, spits out a brief monologue on how great he is, and then flies off on a soul-searching mission in outer space.
However, as you can probably guess, that wouldn't be last we see of Adam (or his cocoon).
9 He Was Turned Into a Christ-Like Figure of the Marvel Universe
Adam fell off the Marvel map for awhile until 1972's Marvel Premiere #1, when he was resurrected (pun intended) by writer Roy Thomas and penciler Gil Kane.
The creative pair significantly revamped the character, fleshing "Him" out as an allegorical messianic superhuman with cosmic abilities. Who also just so happens to be able to spin a cocoon to regenerate.
Roy Thomas was a huge fan of the popular hippy musical Jesus Christ Superstar and wanted to bring that story to comic books in a superhero context-- because really, isn't the son of God just another superhero in sandals?
One was born in a manger, the other emerged from a cocoon. Both have epically flowing locks. Each are constantly saying confusingly wise things.
The similarities are endless. So it just makes sense that Adam Warlock be turned into super Jesus.
8 His Original Goal in Life Was To Stop Man-Beast
When "Him" reappeared on the intergalactic scene in the early '70s, his life's purpose quickly got an upgrade (as did his name).
After a brief interlude to try and mate with Lady Sif of Asgard, which resulted in getting his butt kicked by her boyfriend Thor, "Him" went into hiding in a newly formed cocoon.
Not long after a super-intelligent geneticist named the High Evolutionary was in the midst of creating a new and improved world called Counter-Earth, just like regular Earth only free of all evil and located on the other side of the sun.
High Evolutionary also created the genetically modified wolflike Man-Beast to protect this new realm. Of course Man-Beast decides to rebel and bring evil to Counter-Earth.
When the cocoon of "Him" conveniently floats by, High Evolutionary enlists the man-god's help to defeat Man-Beast, sending him to Counter-Earth and christening him "Warlock."
7 He Got His Full Name From Some Random Teenager
During his mission to destroy Man-Beast on Counter-Earth, Warlock was struck with a bout of amnesia, remembering only his name. Naturally, the confused hero befriended a group of hippie teenagers -- David, Jason, Eddie, and Ellie -- to help him on his quest.
Since Ellie thought "Warlock" sounded like a surname, she opted to take command of his life and give him the first name of "Adam."
(Apparently Marvel felt the need to unnecessarily double-down on Warlock's religious allusions.)
Reinvigorated by his new, now somewhat boring sounding name, Adam Warlock finally defeats the Man-Beast once and for all with the help of Hulk.
Though not before Man-Beast crucifies Adam, where he heavy-handedly dies for the sins of the people of Counter-Earth then resurrects by fashioning a regenerative cocoon, just like Jesus.
6 His Future Self Becomes Evil (and Grows an Afro)
Having rid Counter-Earth of Man-Beast, Adam leaves in search of new purpose. Ironically, at a future date Adam gets kidnapped by the In-Betweener, a balancing force between Order and Chaos.
The In-Betweener transports Warlock 5,000 years into the past and attempts to repurpose him as a counter to the destructive nature of Thanos.
Instead, Adam goes insane, changes his name to Magus, forms a religious empire called "The Universal Church of Truth," and sets about conquering the galaxy by demanding all either worship him or die.
When Magus' timeline paradoxically catches up with present day Adam's, the latter seeks to put an end to his future self's tyranny.
Aided by Pip the Troll, Gamora and, of all beings, her adoptive father Thanos, Adam decides the only way to end Magus' reign is to end himself. So Warlock travels into the future right before being taken by In-Betweener and basically ends his own life.
5 He Dies (and Resurrects) a Lot
Getting crucified by a talking werewolf and eliminating his future self wasn't Adam's only dalliances with death. In fact, he pretty much dies in every storyline he's in.
The next death comes during the first major battle involving the Infinity Stones, when Thanos steals the Soul Gem (along with all the others) in an attempt to smite out every star in the universe for Mistress Death. In the process, Thanos also destroys Adam.
Fortunately, the spirit of Adam ends up surviving inside the Soul World, a pocket dimension of contentment located within the Soul Gem.
He, however, makes a brief triumphant return to defeat Thanos before finally returning to the Soul World to spend his days as a ghost inside a space rock. That is until he resurrects yet again... and then dies again... and then resurrects again.
4 He Has a female Doppelgänger of Many Names
After their initial defeat, the Enclave made a second go of developing the perfect human with a female version called Paragon. Alas, just like Adam, Paragon rejects the Enclave's evil plans, destroys them, and flies off to find purpose.
She eventually learns of the existence of Adam, decides that it's their shared destiny to mate, and changes her name to "Her," only to sadly find out that he's dead.
However, even when Adam later resurrects, he rejects her advances. This ends up being a good thing because it turns out they're actually different aspects of the same entity that has existed for centuries.
This means that their so-called creation was just another state of cocooning found by the Enclave, rather than created by it.
"Her" also went by the names Kismet and Ayesha, the latter of which was used when the character was adapted as The Sovereign leader in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2.
3 He is Currently the Living Tribunal (But Also Not)
We now arrive at modern-day Adam Warlock, as chronicled in Infinity Revelation (2014), Infinity Relativity (2015), and Infinity Finale (2016). (You might have noticed Adam has a lot of Infinity in his life.)
After being destroyed by Star-Lord, Warlock is brought back from Death's realm by Thanos to help solve a cosmic mystery.
This inadvertently triggers the arrival of parallel, alternate universe versions of themselves, requiring one version be decimated in order to prevent an existence-ending paradox.
So modern-day Adam gets the ax and is replaced by his more-powerful alternate self, who then accidentally wipes away all reality.
This leads to a meeting with the One-Above-All to fix things. Marvel's Supreme Being agrees so long as Adam brings back his less-powerful original self and assumes the role as the new Living Tribunal -- judge of the Marvel Multiverse and arbitrator on all things cosmic. It's a pretty good gig if you can get it.
2 He Will Not Be in Avengers: Infinity War
Despite all the secrecy over the whereabouts of the Soul Gem, his apparent introduction at the end of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2, and essentially being the most important hero in the Infinity Gauntlet story arc (on which the upcoming film is heavily based), Adam Warlock will not appear in Avengers 3.
Or at least, that's according to GOTG director James Gunn and MCU chief Kevin Feige, both of whom can probably be trusted as reliable sources.
However, that doesn't mean you can't still get your Warlock fix. On the comic side of things, Marvel is releasing Infinity Wars to bank on the growing attention.
It's lead-in, the 2018 miniseries Infinity Countdown, featured Adam (the regular one, not the Living Tribunal version) prominently searching for the Soul Gem, and there's no doubt the man-god will be one of the main players on the pages of the upcoming series.
1 He May Be in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.3 (But There's No Guarantee)
In Guardians of the Galaxy, there was much talk about that hatched cocoon in the Collector's lair (which proved just an Easter Egg). More definitive, during the post-credits of GOTG2 we found Sovereign leader Ayesha in the process of creating a perfect being to destroy the Guardians, stating, “I think I shall call him Adam.”
Just like in his first appearance back in 1966, we've got more cocoon than man-god.
However, rest assured "Him" will appear in an upcoming GOTG film. (We're guessing in similar fashion to his comic arc, where he'll rebel against his creators and join forces with the Guardians.)
Originally James Gunn had Adam in the sequel, but cut him to make room for other characters. Despite that decision, Gunn assures the hero will play a big role in the MCU's future, though not before also cryptically tweeting, "never said AW was in Vol 3."
What do you think? When we will see Adam Warlock in the MCU? Do you have any other cool factoids to share? Sound off in the comments!