Chaos War #5

Issue Date: 
March 2011
Story Title: 
The End is Here

Greg Pak & Fred Van Lente (writers), Khoi Pham (penciler), Tom Palmer & Bob McLeod (inkers), Sunny Gho (colorist), Simon Bowland (letterer), Brandon Peterson (cover artist), Randall Millar (production), Jordan D White (assistant editor), Mark Paniccia (senior editor), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive editor)

Brief Description: 

As locations around the world are merged together, the remaining gods and deceased heroes continue to fight the Chaos King’s forces. Hercules battles the Chaos King, while Amadeus and Galactus prepare their plan to rescue the inhabitants of Earth, but Amadeus is overcome by fear: he does not want to make the decision as to who should live and die - as there is not enough time to evacuate everyone from Earth. The Chaos King wounds Hercules, who encourages his faithful sidekick. The God Squad manages to aid Hercules, giving him time to thrust the Chaos King into the void that has been created to send Earth’s inhabitants to the Continuum. Instead the Chaos King is the only one sent away, believing instead that he has consumed the universe. Hercules is visited by Athena, who tells him that he is the new All-Father, but Hercules is annoyed at the gods, and instead uses his super-god power to restore the devastated Earth - and its inhabitants - to how it was before the Chaos King destroyed everything. The heroes who fell into sleep when Nightmare was killed return, but not everything is how it was - as the four dead members of Alpha Flight who were brought back to life under the Chaos King’s thrall remain alive. Hercules however finds himself without any power at all, as a new day begins.

Full Summary: 

The Black Mountains in North Carolina - and at New York Harbor - and also the Big Island of Hawai’i. ‘THOR! A voice calls out. It’s Rita DeMara a.k.a. Yellowjacket. ‘Praise Odin t’was not only evil dead that Chaos King freed from Hel’s gloomy talons!’ Thor exclaims as Rita flies towards him. ‘But how did you get here…?’ he asks. ‘Hey, I could listen to that Shakeaspeare talk all day long. But I got two awake dead Avengers and a cargo full of sleeping living ones here!’ Yellowjacket replies, referring to the vessel floating behind her, before asking what the plan is. ‘Try shutting up - and hitting something!’ the Hulk booms as he and Skaar battle alongside Dr Walter Langkowski a.k.a. Sasquatch and James “Mac” MacDonald Hudson a.k.a. Guardian, like Yellowjacket, similarly revived by the Chaos King.

Thor is confused by their appearance and wonders how they can be in all these places at once. Fire and smoke billows behind them, while Sasquatch grapples with a large tentacle and remarks that was the same reaction everyone in Alpha Flight had. ‘We thought we were still in Alberta’ he declares. Walter explains to Thor that the scrap of Space-Time now yet absorbed into the Chaos King is collapsing into a curvature singularity, like the event horizon around a black hole. ‘Sequence and distance are compressing to infinite / eternal meaninglessness around a single point…which even the non-physical in the room must realize…is the bazillion foot tall glowing bearded guy in the skirt’ Walter explains, referring of course to the Incredible Hercules, who towers over the Earth, a match for the deadly Amatsu-Mikabohshi - a.k.a. the Chaos King!

‘Mere hero no more…god of gods…you have only…gathered for your doom!’ the Chaos King exclaims. ‘Oh, yeah? Well - we’re sick of your stupi - aw, screw it!’ Hercules exclaims, interrupting himself, before punching the Chaos King hard, knocking him backwards through space.

At the remains of the Baxter Building in New York City, ‘No, Miek! We have to work together or the Chaos King will destroy us all!’ Amadeus Cho calls out as Miek the Unhived, in the thrall of the Chaos King, holds the young man over his rather large mouth. ‘Enough lies, human!’ Miek calls out - but he loses his footing when a wall behind him begins to crumble, forcing him to release Amadeus. ‘Excuse me, coming through!’ Amadeus exclaims as he manages to get onto Miek’s back, and smashes him in the head with his weapon. Amadeus calls out to Galactus - addressing him as “Big G” - he tells him to hang on, that he is going to give him whatever help his world’s-smartest-cockroach intellect can. ‘Whoa’ Amadeus utters as he stops in his tracks, as he sees the world-eater, Galactus, draining his own momentual power cosmic to open the portal to the bubble universe known as the Continuum.

‘Galactus with the hero move…’ Amadeus exclaims. But the Silver Surfer calls him a fool: ‘You think my master would sacrifice himself for any living thing?’ he asks. ‘I don’t have to think, Surfer. I’m seeing it live at eleven!’ Amadeus replies. ‘You’re seeing a force of nature maintaining his food supply’ the Surfer corrects Amadeus. Silver Surfer swats away some creatures as he tells Amadeus to use his teleportation technology to move this planet’s population into the continuum, and quickly before all of Galactus’ energy is consumed holding the portal open. ‘My master needs their life force in this new universe, or -’ Silver Surfer begins, before Amadeus interrupts him, asking ‘Where the heck did you come from, anyway?’

‘All places are now one because -’ Silver Surfer begins, ‘Oookay’ Amadeus mutters, ‘All right, all right…fought the Gods before. You can do this’ he tells himself as he approaches some equipment. ‘Just make with the nice science and…oh, no…’ he exclaims.

Up above, the Chaos King has regain his “footing” and punches Hercules hard in the face.

‘Heh. Tickles’ the Red She-Hulk exclaims as she punches a muck-liked vbeing in the face, while Hulk and Skaar battle alongside her.

The equipment connected to Galactus begins to work, ‘Move your people, human!’ Galactus booms. ‘I…I can’t…not in the time we have…I -’ Amadeus replies nervously, but Galactus booms at him again: ‘MOVE!’ ‘The universe’s oldest entity is screaming at me…telling me to save you, Delphyne. But I’m calculating this every what I know how…and as soon as I start saving anyone…millions get left behind. How can I…how can I…’ Amadeus exclaims as he begins keying calculations into the equipment, the image of Delphyne Gorgon on a monitor before him, while images of the citizens of Earth flash before him on other monitors.

Up above, the Chaos King’s sickle-like fingers slash Hercules’s chest, drawing blood. Lightning crackles around Earth. ‘Herc…’ Amadeus utters. ‘Just…do it, boy!’ Hercules calls out. ‘Wait, you were the one who was all “No, we stay and fight -”!’ Amadeus reminds Hercules, who orders ‘Do it!’ But tears stream down Amadeus’s face as he announces that the math doesn’t work, that there is no time to save everyone. ‘And I can’t…I can’t choose who lives and dies!’ Amadeus exclaims. Hercules tells his faithful sidekick that he hates this just as much, but that in Gaea’s embrace he saw how true gods work. ‘You have to start the evacuation. NOW!’ he exclaims. Amadeus continues to cry, ‘No! You’re the god! I’m just the plucky mortal sidekick!’ But Hercules reminds Amadeus that they have walked this road together. ‘You’ve taught me as much as I’ve taught you…and now, here at the end -’ Hercules is interrupted as the Chaos King comes up behind him and shoves his claws through Hercules’s chest.

‘I - I need your help…to fulfil the responsibility I so foolishly claimed. We cannot let him win’ Hercules declares. ‘Wait, what?’ Amadeus exclaims, before urging Hercules to bring the Chaos King down to Earth, quickly. ‘Your brains…my brawn…ONE LAST TIME!’ Hercules exclaims as he struggles with the Chaos King, before managing to force the Chaos King down onto Earth. He lands nearby, his jagged-toothed mouth a horrid site. The device strapped to Galactus is in operation, while Amadeus calls out to the God Squad. ‘Let him have it!’ he shouts. The Chaos King look up and sees his army gathering. ‘The time has come to end time…and snuff out -’ he begins, before Silver Surfer interrupts him, calling out to Sersi.

The sultry Eternal tells the Surfer that she is way ahead of him, as she uses her power to create a large mega-phone, which is used to amplify Venus’s song, upsetting the Chaos King’s army. Guardian, Sasquatch, Yellowjacket, Balder and the Hulk continue to battle the creatures, with Guardian telling everyone not to let the creatures get near their master, that they have to keep the Chaos King isolated. When the Hulk bats one of the creatures away, Balder exclaims ‘Well done, monster’. ‘Whatever, baldy’ the Hulk replies. ‘Balder’ the Asgardian corrects the Hulk. ‘Haw’ Hulk mutters.

Suddenly, ‘Your clinging to your life only ensures agony in -’ the Chaos King begins as he shoves his claws through Hercules’s eyes! But, the Chaos King is interrupted with the arrival of the Mighty Thor and Daimon Hellstrom, the Son of Satan a.k.a. Hellstorm. ‘Your threats drown in thunder!’ Thor booms as he strikes the Chaos King through the chest with an massive burst of lightning, while Hellstorm attacks the Chaos King from below, engulfing him in fire. ‘Now, Herc, give it all you got!’ Thor calls out to his friend. Hercules regains his composure, and uppercuts the Chaos King in the face, breaking several of his teeth.

But the Chaos King just laughs, and he increases his mass, looming over Hercules, his form shifts into that of a void, as he begins to engulf everything. ‘Your last ounce of strength…against my perfect darkness? Weep, gods and heroes. Now Chaos is king!’ the deadly being booms as even Galactus is engulfed. But, in truth, the void begins to grow smaller, as the Chaos King exclaims ‘Perfect once more in the void…all become nothing…’.

As the darkness disappears, the gods and un-dead heroes gather. ‘I…I can’t believe that actually worked’ Sersi exclaims. ‘Psh. Of course it worked’ Amadeus replies, boasting that Athena always said he would save the Multiverse, after all. ‘Okay, okay, you don’t have to be so Mary Sue about it’ Sersi mutters. Guardian flies down to Amadeus and declares ‘You know, I actually am a rocket scientist. But what just happened?’ Amadeus holds the void in his hand, ‘The numbers don’t lie, Guardian. We couldn’t beat him’ Amadeus declares. ‘So we let him win’. Amadeus explains that Hercules punched the Chaos King through the portal, into the Continuum, which is the Chaos King’s universe now, filled with his inchoate void. ‘Happy ending all around, then?’ Mac asks.

‘Not yet’ Amadeus replies as they look at the destruction around them, the Earth is very messed up. ‘But…I thought we won’ Yellowjacket exclaims as she flits nearby. ‘Sure. We saved creation. What’s left of it’ Sersi declares, before Amadeus goes over to Hercules, bloodied and bruised. ‘I…failed’ Hercules exclaims, while a voice calls out to him: ‘You listened to the boy…you listened to your heart…and you saved creation itself’. Athena appears before Hercules, returned now to his true size, in a strange darkness. ‘Athena? But I…killed you’ Hercules exclaims. ‘If you meet the Buddha on the road…’ Athena begins. ‘What?’ Hercules asks.

Athena tells Hercules that for millennia she has walked with him, in hopes that one day he would walk away, and become all she dreamed he could. ‘The greatest of heroes. The greatest of men’ Athena exclaims. Gritting his teeth, Hercules asks Athena if she set all of this up. ‘I only saw what could come’ Athena replies. ‘But so many…so many died…’ Hercules exclaims. ‘As they all would have one day or another, without meaning or purpose in the corrupted universe they occupied’ Athena replies, telling Hercules that now the slate is clean and a new world can grow.

Athena informs Hercules that when he recovers from his injuries he will be the new All-Father - a man become god, possessing the heart that fearsome Zeus never had. ‘No. No no no’ Hercules exclaims. ‘Rise, God of Heroes. And as existence begins anew…rule with the wisdom our father never knew!’ Athena exclaims. Hercules does stand up, but he shouts ‘NO!’ as the darkness around them turns to light. ‘No? Listen, brother -’ Athena begins. ‘No. For once, you listen’ Hercules tells Athena, adding that he understands now. Brother, wait. Until you heal, you cannot wield your powers so -’ Athena begins, but Hercules tells Athena to step aside. ‘You’ll die!’ Athena shouts.

‘You call me the God of Heroes?’ Hercules asks. ‘What heroes teach us…is what the gods should be’ Hercules’s true form stands up, and announces that no matter what the cost, he undoes all that Athena’s cold wisdom has wrought. ‘As my first - and last act as All-Father - I do what any true god should do - what the heroes among us do every day - I give up everything…to protect…to heal…to restore…and then to walk away’.

Hercules’s actions restores the universe to hoe it was before the Chaos War - Nightmare is once again in his realm, while Ares is once more imprisoned. The cities all around the world begin to repair and restore themselves, with each being returned to their true position on Earth. Civilians wake and look around them, unsure of what has transpired. ‘Hey, the big guy comes through. I always knew he would’ Spider-Man remarks. ‘In more ways that one’ Iron Man points out. ‘How’s that?’ Captain America asks as the heroes wake from their slumber and look around them - ‘Look who’s not dead anymore’ Cap calls out, as Guardian and the other dead members of Alpha Flight remain standing with Snowbird, Sasquatch, Northstar and Aurora. ‘Whoa! We’re still here?’ Guardian exclaims as they stand on a beach, looking out over the sunrise.

‘Hey…it’s Herc’s world. I’m just living here’ Guardian remarks as everyone turns their attention to Hercules and Amadeus, standing on the water’s edge. Suddenly, Delphyne Gorgon rushes from the ship that was housing the sleeping heroes. ‘Amadeus!’ she calls out. ‘Delphyne!’ Amadeus exclaims. ‘You did it!’ Delphyne declares. Amadeus admits that he helped, while Delphyne asks if Athena was right. ‘I hate it when she’s right’ Delphyne mutters. ‘Ah Delphyne. I nearly…you have no idea…’ Amadeus mutters. ‘Say it’ Hercules tells him. ‘Shut up’ Amadeus replies. ‘Come on. I just restored the universe. The least you can do is -’ Hercules begins. ‘Shut up’ Amadeus shouts. ‘Say it!’ Hercules tells him again. ‘I love you’ Amadeus tells Delphyne, who begins to cry as they embrace.

Amadeus and Delphyne break their embrace and Delphyne tells Hercules that she finds him slightly less incompetent than usual. ‘Well. That is something to celebrate’ Hercules remarks as he and Amadeus “high-five” each other. ‘Ow’ Hercules exclaims, looking at his hand. ‘Whoa. That shouldn’t have -’ Amadeus begins, to which Hercules declares that he is a supergod no more. ‘Or - any kind of god, it seems like. But it’s worth it, don’t you think?’ he adds. ‘Man…’ Amadeus exclaims as he and Delphyne clasp hands. “Man” ‘Ha. Exactly’ Hercules exclaims. ‘Well…I could always use a sidekick’ Amadeus declares. ‘Keep dreaming’ Hercules replies as he and Amadeus walk away from the gathered heroes and a new day begins.

Characters Involved: 

Thor, Sersi, Venus, Hellstorm, Silver Surfer, Galactus (all God Squad)

Amadeus Cho
Aurora, Guardian, Marrina, Northstar, Sasquatch, Shaman, Snowbird (all former members of Alpha Flight)


Delphyne Gorgon


Yellowjacket II


Hulk, Red She-Hulk, Skaar

Luke Cage, Captain America, Iron Man, Spider-Man


Amatsu-Mikaboshi / King Chaos

Miek the Unhived

Various demons


Story Notes: 

The Chaos War crossover ties into several one-shots and mini-series: Chaos War: Thor, Chaos War: Chaos King, Chaos War: Dead Avengers, Chaos War: Alpha Flight, Chaos War: God Squad, Chaos War: Ares, Chaos War: X-Men, as well as Incredible Hulks #618-620.

Though she is not seen on panel this issue, Vindicator II, along with Guardian, Shaman and Marrina have been confirmed in an interview by Fred van Lente and Greg Pak as being resurrected following “Chaos War”. However, the Dead X-Men and Dead Avengers did not fare so lucky.

“If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him!” is the whole quote of a Buddhist saying (with several interpretations)

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