Galactus is one of the most powerful characters in the Marvel comics. He is a force of nature that easily crushes anyone who stands in the way of his hunger. Even though his origin story has been retconned numerous times, by now, it was established that the Sentience of Universe created him to maintain multiversal balance after natural forces had annihilated his cosmos. However, in 2020, Galactus’ origin story has been changed again, and a “new” cosmic entity has been introduced, which made Galactus tremble with fear. Let’s see who the Black Winter is and why Galactus is so afraid of it.
Black Winter is a cosmic entity that destroys everything that it comes into contact with through eldritch darkness. According to Galactus’ newest origin story, Black Winter created Galactus to be its Herald, and Galactus does the same thing with planets that Black Winter does with Universes. It devours them. As such, the entity has multiversal powers. Even though Black Winter was significantly more powerful than Galactus, it was “destroyed” by Thor when he created a bomb out of Galactus’ corpse, blowing it up into oblivion. However, Black Winter wasn’t actually killed and will eventually return.
Now that we’ve summarized who or rather what the Black Winter is, it’s time to explain it in more detail. Black Winter is connected to Galactus’ first origin story, one that was forgotten at this point, so if you’re interested in more, stay with us and keep reading!
The origin of Black Winter explained
Before we explain where Black Winter came from, we need to revisit Galactus’ origin story. It was changed numerous times, and for the most part, it was an established fact that Galactus, previously known as Galan, was a survivor of the sixth version of the Universe, but his Universe sadly died due to the “Big Crunch” a phenomenon that doomed his Universe to condense and collapse into a Cosmic Egg.
Galan was the only survivor of that old Universe, and he was transformed into Galactus by the Sentience of the Universe, who bestowed upon him a task crucial for keeping the Universe in check, devouring of planets.
However, this was revised Galactus’ origin. In ‘Thor’ #169, released in 1969, a different story is told, one that mentions that Galactus’ homeworld wasn’t in the previous incarnation of the Universe but rather within the current existing Universe. Only all of its inhabitants were infected by the so-called ‘Plague’ that left no survivors save for Galactus.
This “Plague” resurfaced once again under a different name in ‘Thor’ Vol. 6 #4, released in 2020, when Galactus’ origin was yet again retconned.
According to Galactus’ latest origin story, his previous Universe, as well as his homeworld Taa, wasn’t destroyed by the Big Crunch but rather by a cosmic entity called the Black Winter that devours anything that it comes in contact with through eldritch darkness. Black Winter specifically created Galactus to be its Herald since the entity does exactly the same thing as Galactus but on a much larger, multiversal scale. Where Galactus devours entire planets, Black Winter devouers enties realities and universes.
Why does Galactus fear the Black Winter?
When Black Winter resurfaced and started rotting away the World Tree, Galactus sought the help of the “one destined to kill him,” which was Thor. Galactus never revealed the full truth about the Black Winter to the God of Thunder. He used Thor to help him devour five extremely energy-rich planets so he could oppose the entity. Additionally, he also turned Thor into his Herald. In truth, Black Winter didn’t come to consume the Universe or Thor. It came to the Prime Universe to reclaim its Herald, which was Galactus.
Galactus didn’t want to serve the Black Winter and pitted one of the most powerful superheroes in the Marvel Universe to oppose the entity. Galactus also fears the Black Winter because he witnessed what the entity is capable of. It witnessed the large-scale destruction, entropy, and desolation that Black Winter left behind several times.
Is Black Winter bigger than Galactus?
Technically, we don’t know whether Black Winter is bigger or exactly the same size as Galactu because we don’t know its true size exactly. As Galactus does, Black Winter takes on any form that it wants. Meaning that each individual perceives Black Winter differently, just like different races across the Universe perceive Galactus with their own features. Usually, the Black Winter appears to the individual in the form of the person who is destined to kill him or her. This is why Black Winter appeared to Galactus as Thor since Thor was the one to kill him a few issues later.
Who defeated Black Winter?
Black Winter was defeated by Thor. Galactus was already treading on thin ice because he devoured one of the planets before Thor could evacuate the survivors; supercharged with Power Cosmic, Thor swore vengeance on Galactus as soon as their task with Black Winter was complete.
When Black Winter revealed the true reason why Galactus was trying to get rid of it, Thor was mad and proceeded to kill Galactus by draining him of his powers, leaving behind an empty shell. Thor later used that shell to turn it into a cosmic bomb and defeated Black Winter with it.
However, neither Galactus nor Black Winter would stay dead for long. Galactus is already resurrected, this time craving knowledge instead of planets, and the Watcher revealed that Black Winter is only seemingly defeated.
How powerful is Black Winter?
Black Winter is a multiversal entity that devours and destroys everything that it comes in contact with through eldritch darkness. Black Winter is capable of power bestowal and Herald creation just like Galactus is, and it does pretty much the same things as Galactus but on a much larger scale.
Black Winter can also create numerous avatars and cast elaborate illusions. It’s one of the most powerful cosmic entities in Marvel, capable of destroying entire universes.
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