Classification: Extraterrestrial (Kree) weapon of mass destruction
Creator(s): Unspecified Kree weapons engineers
Users/Possessors: Ael-Dan, technicians
originally the Supreme Intelligence (who forbade its use)
Enemies/Targets: Earth (destroyed along with all of its inhabitants); the Shi'ar Throneworld (destroyed along with all of its inhabitants)
Location: Somewhere on the planet Hala in the Pama System of the Large Magellanic Cloud
First Appearance: What If...? II#55 (November, 1993)
Powers/Abilities/Functions: The Omni-Wave Annihilator is a weapon of mass destruction that generates "cosmic lightning," which it transmits through a sub-space domain at a speed that makes it almost instantaneous. Within seconds of the beam arriving at its target, the Annihilator's energy causes all matter at that location to be consumed by flames of over four billion degrees Fahrenheit. This extreme heat is enough to instantly destroy all solid, liquid and gaseous matter at the target location. This "destroyed" matter may actually be converted into plasma.
The Omni-Wave Annihilator can be used against targets that are millions of light-years away, giving it an "inter-galactic" range.
The control room for the Omni-Wave Annihilator contained many consoles, each manned by a technician, and a large viewscreen which could display real-time images of target planets that were located hundreds of thousands or even millions of light-years away from Hala.
(What If...? II#55 (fb) - BTS) - At an unspecified time in the past, Kree scientists/engineers developed the weapon known as the Omni-Wave Annihilator. However, the weapon's effects were "so unthinkable" that "generations" of Kree recoiled in horror from the idea of using it. Even the Supreme Intelligence made its use forbidden.
(Avengers I#346 / What If...? II#55) - During a confrontation on Hala,
Reality-93165 diverged from Reality-616 when Captain America's interference prevented Deathbird from
assassinating the co-emperors of the Kree, Ael-Dan and Dar-Benn.
--or they were just parallel realities that diverged at that point--Snood
(What If...? II#55) - After being disarmed by Captain America, Deathbird was immediately killed by Ael-Dan. The two co-emperors then deduced that the deposed Supreme Intelligence must have been aiding the Shi'ar assassin. When the Supreme Intelligence responded by revealing its involvement, Ael-Dan spoke the keyword "Abraxas" to activate a virus that had previously been encrypted into the Intelligence's operating system, killing the Supreme Intelligence. Then, as Dar-Benn took a moment to appreciate their triumph, Ael-Dan shot him in the back, killing him. Now the sole ruler of the Kree Empire, Ael-Dan ordered that the captured Terrans were to be taken to the concentration camps. The exception was Captain America, who had criticized Ael-Dan for killing Deathbird after she had been disarmed.
After being forced to follow Ael-Dan to a certain control room, Captain America asked why he had been brought there. Emperor Ael-Dan replied that it was to teach him the meaning of war and also so that he could witness the beginning of the Kree Empire's million-year hegemony over the galaxy. After ranting about how the aboriginal inhabitants of Earth had for too long defied the empire and interfered in Kree affairs, Ael-Dan proclaimed that the Terrans would serve as an example by which the rest of the galaxy would see what would become of the enemies of the Kree. Ael-Dann then ordered the activation of the Omni-Wave Annihilator but a technician spoke up, reminding him that the Supreme Intelligence had "forbidden the use of--" but Ael-Dan interrupted him, shouting, "The Supreme Intelligence is no more! I rule the empire!" while hurling his spear into and through that technician. Taking the hint, another technician immediately brought the Omni-Wave Annihilator on-line, and then Ael-Dan gave the command, "Now."
As a horrified Captain America watched on a viewscreen, the planet Earth and its five billion inhabitants were subjected to the force that Ael-Dan had unleashed against them. Cosmic lightning traveled through a sub-space domain and arrived at Earth with nearly instantaneous speed. Within seconds, Earth's entire surface was consumed by flames four billion degrees Fahrenheit hotter than the surface of the Sun. In this total holocaust, everything that was or could have been of Earth, its monuments, its wonders and its peoples, were utterly destroyed, forever.
(What If...? II#55 (fb) - BTS) - In the aftermath, Emperor Ael-Dan gave a televised speech to the Kree people in which he announced that now would begin the racial cleansing of the galaxy and the supremacy of the Kree Empire!
(What If...? II#55 (fb) - BTS) - Very shortly after the Imperator made that speech, the Omni-Wave Annihilator was used to destroy the Shi'ar Throneworld itself.
(What If...? II#55) - While reporting on these recent events, the official Kree news service broadcast the ending of Ael-Dan's speech followed by a recording of the destruction of the Shi'ar Throneworld. The last two Avengers still free on Hala, Iron Man (Tony Stark) and a shrunken Goliath (Clint Barton) watched the news from hiding.
(What If...? II#56 (fb) - BTS) - Although the Kree committed genocide against thousands of alien races over the course of the next several Earth-years, the Omni-Wave Annihilator was apparently not used to destroy any other alien planets
Comments: Created by Len Kaminski, Craig Brasfield and Frank Turner.
The fact that the Omni-Wave Annihilator had been invented by the Kree long
before Reality-93165 diverged from Reality-616 during the Kree-Shi'ar War means that the Kree from Reality-616 must
possess their own counterpart of this weapon of mass destruction.
I would suggest that "may" would be more appropriate than "must"; although the premise of What If? stories is that the reality was the same as -616 until one specific point of divergence, there are certainly cases that contradict this, with inherent variations prior to the point of apparent divergence (in some cases due to subsequent retroactive continuity). Additionally, I do not believe that there is always a single reality that literally diverges, but rather that there are parallel realities whose histories/natures diverge (vary from each other) at certain points. Presumably both situations occur within the Multiverse.
Although the Omniscient Narrative states that Ael-Dan had signed "the death
warrants of five billion souls" when he ordered the use of the Omni-Wave Annihilator, Goliath (Clint Barton) later
reminds Iron Man (Tony Stark) that "Four billion people (were) dead" because their "whole blasted planet" had been
destroyed. I guess Clint's knowledge was a few years out of date since (in the real world) 1986 was the last year
when the world population was below 5 billion. By 1992, the year that "Operation: Galactic Storm" was published,
the estimated human population (in the real world) was up to 5.4 billion.
And, with the sliding timescale, the population would be even higher than that!--Snood
In Avengers I#93 (November, 1971), Roy Thomas, Neal Adams and Tom Palmer introduced the Omni-Wave Projector, a Kree device that Captain Mar-Vell described as the only way he could send an instantaneous message to the Kree galaxy "across the void of hyper-space." Mar-Vell also mentioned that it could "become the most dangerous weapon in the cosmos!" Later, in Avengers I#97, Mar-Vell told the Scarlet Witch that "We Kree designed the Omni-Wave as a harmless tool for our communication, no more. It is only when operated by non-Kree minds that it would become a loaded gun...pointed at the galaxy which is my home!"
Although it is never specifically stated, I believe that writer Len Kaminski meant the Omni-Wave Annihilator to be very similar to the weapon which an Omni-Wave Projector could be if operated by a non-Kree mind. If so, then it's easy to see why the Kree would keep information about the Omni-Wave Projector so secret.
However, the idea that the Kree Empire had such a weapon for a long time but it had never been activated because "generations of Kree (had) recoiled in horror from its use" seems pretty out of character for the Kree military who have a long history of atrocities in their dealings with aliens. Since even Captain Mar-Vell once ordered the use of a planet killer bomb to destroy the homeworld of the Satori race, it's hard to imagine that the Kree would really be so appalled by the destructive power of this weapon that they chose to not use it.
As mentioned above, the Kree Empire is only known to have used the Omni-Wave Annihilator twice, first to annihilate Earth and the second time to destroy the Shi'ar Throneworld. Given how genocidal Emperor Ael-Dan was, it seems odd that this weapon wasn't used more often. One possible reason for its minimal use is that it might have required some extremely rare element in order to function. Another reason could be that destroying enemy planets and their populations so completely prevented the Kree Empire from obtaining the natural resources and slaves that they would have gotten if they had simply conquered those planets using less destructive weapons. Or maybe it was a combination of both those reasons.
The fact that the Omni-Wave Annihilator was able to destroy the planet Earth in a matter of seconds reminded me of how quickly the Death Star's superlaser destroyed the planet Alderaan in the Star Wars universe. Although the superlaser caused Alderaan to explode, something which may or may not have happened to Earth, the amount of energy that would be required to heat the matter that made up Earth to a temperature of more than four billion degrees would seem to be at least in the same ballpark. With that in mind, I thought that it would be interesting to mention that some Star Wars fans had calculated how much energy was required to cause such destruction. They reasoned that the minimum amount of energy that would have to be put into an Earth-sized planet to blast it apart would have to be at least as much as the planet's gravitational binding energy which is 2.24 × 1032 Joules or 224,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 Joules of energy! When one then considers the fact that the entire energy output of the Sun is only 3.8 × 1026 joules per second, this means that the energy required would be equal to a full week’s worth of the Sun’s total energy output. It seems unbelievable that any technology would be able to generate so much energy and direct it against a target in only a matter of seconds.
On the other hand, when faced with Incursions from alternate Earths a few years later, the Illuminati were able to create Antimatter Injectors that were each capable of destroying Earth-sized planets just as quickly. Clearly the human race in the MU is just as capable as the Kree when it comes to creating Weapons of Mass Destruction and using them when they feel the need.
In this timeline, the Avengers who had been sent as envoys to the Shi'ar homeworld survived because that planet was destroyed by the Omni-Wave Annihilator before they could even make it there. This differs from what happened in Reality-616 where the Avengers team had reached Chandilar (as seen in Quasar#33) before Deathbird assassinated Ael-Dan and Dar-Benn in the great hall of Kree-Lar on Hala (as seen in Avengers I#346). Clearly, this timeline actually diverged from that of Reality-616 several hours (at least) before Cap thwarted the assassination. Maybe this delegation to the Shi'ar had more trouble dealing Gladiator than their 616 counterparts did?
The survival of the envoys to the Shi'ar also indicates that the second usage of the Omni-Wave Annihilator must have taken place VERY soon after Earth was destroyed or else the envoys would have had enough time to reach Chandilar and thus been destroyed along with it.
I don't know about anyone else but I was slightly pleased to see that Captain America's "heroism" in preventing the assassination of the two murderous Kree rulers had such disastrous consequences for the human race. By trying to impose "super-hero morality" onto a war situation, Cap was pretty much asking for something bad to happen and, well, it did! I would go further and say that his criticizing Ael-Dan for killing the disarmed Deathbird was what provoked the genocidal Kree into destroying Earth but the fact that they had the Omniwave Annihilator ready for activation would seem to indicate that they were preparing to use it anyway so it's not all Cap's fault.
In this issue the name of Ael-Dan's short-lived Pink Kree co-ruler is spelt "Dar-Ben" instead of "Dar-Benn." It's not an uncommon error and shows up on some on-line sources, some of whom misspell Ael-Dan's name as "Ael-Dann."
This profile was completed 7/11/2021, but its publication was delayed as it was intended for the Appendix 20th anniversary 's celebratory event.
Profile by Donald Campbell.
The Omni-Wave Annihilator has no known connections to
Note: This sub-profile is a stub until someone writes a profile on Reality-93165.
The planet Earth that existed in a divergent timeline where the question "What If...the Avengers Lost Operation Galactic Storm?" was answered.
Since this reality diverged from the "mainstream" Marvel Universe as the result of events that took place in outer space, everything about this Earth is presumed to have been identical to the Earth from Reality-616 up until the moment of its destruction. This means that this Earth was inhabited by the same variety of life as Earth-616, including identical populations of humans, human mutants, supernatural beings, and all of the various hidden races. Similarly, its geography, environment and atmosphere were the same as those of Earth-616.
When the Omni-Wave Annihilator was fired at it, this Earth was immediately subjected to "cosmic lightning" that within seconds had transferred so much energy that the entire surface of the planet had become consumed by flames that were FOUR BILLION degrees hotter than the surface of the Sun. Being heated to such temperatures was enough to cause all known elements to instantly vaporize, killing all known forms of corporeal life and destroying every man-made object on the planet.
The two-page image to the left shows eight specific scenes of how the people
of this Earth met their doom. Moving counter-clockwise from the upper left, those scenes are:
•An unmasked Spider-Man (Peter Parker) crying out amidst falling debris as he holds the body of his wife Mary Jane Watson-Parker in his arms while they die.
•Adam Warlock hovering in the air as a tidal wave was about to wash over the headquarters of the Infinity Watch on Monster Island.
•Wolverine (or some other clawed humanoid) being incinerated, leaving a skeleton with claws behind.
•The Human Torch (Johnny Storm) flying around Four Freedoms Plaza as floors of the building explode.
•Captain Britain (Brian Braddock) struggling to hold back a crumbling mass of rock.
•The towers of the undersea city of Atlantis being shattered by shockwaves.
•Ka-Zar crying out as a volcano is the Savage Land erupts.
•Daredevil (Matthew Murdock) holding his head in his hands and crying out as his radar sense (maybe) showed him what was happening.
All the billions of other people who were on Earth at that time were incinerated along with the planet, including Rick Jones, Black Widow (Natasha Romanoff), Doctor Henry "Hank" Pym, Falcon (Sam Wilson), Gilgamesh, Mockingbird (Bobbi Morse Barton), She-Hulk (Jennifer Walters), Spider-Woman (Julia Carpenter), US Agent (John Walker), and the Wasp (Janet Van Dyne).
In any event, after the Omni-Wave Annihilator was used to destroy Earth-93165, only seventeen Terrans (beings who had lived on or originated from that Earth) were known to have survived. Fifteen of those survivors were Avengers members who had been off-world on missions at the time. A team that had gone to Hala was made up of Captain America (Steve Rogers), the Black Knight (Dane Whitman), Crystal, Goliath (Clint Barton), Hercules, Iron Man (Tony Stark) and Sersi while a team that had been sent to the Shi'ar Throneworld (but had not made it there before it too was destroyed) was made up of Captain Marvel (Monica Rambeau), Living Lightning (Miguel Santos), the Scarlet Witch (Wanda Maximoff), Starfox (Eros of Titan), Thor (Eric Masterson), the Vision and Wonder Man (Simon Williams). Quasar (Wendell Vaughn) had been in space guarding the wormhole on the other side of the Sun when Earth was destroyed. However, by the time the war with the Kree Empire had ended, at least eight of these fifteen Avengers had died, leaving the human race effectively extinct.
Although the only other two "Terrans" known to have survived were Drax the Destroyer (formerly Arthur Douglas) and Nova (formerly Frances "Frankie" Raye), there were other survivors who were also not (or no longer) exactly human. The Asgardians and (presumably) the residents of the other godly realms were not destroyed along with Earth. The Eternals who lived on Titan and those Eternals who had lived on Earth until they joined together into a Uni-Mind and left for the stars all presumably survived. The Inhumans who were living in Attilan (which was then located on Earth's Moon) may have survived as well (unless debris from the exploding Earth impacted the Blue Area and wiped them out). And then there were those individuals (like the Futurist or Alpha the Ultimate Mutant or the High Evolutionary) who had left their birthworld for the stars well before the Kree-Shi'a War began.
--What If...? II#55
The throneworld of the Shi'ar Empire and possibly the homeworld of the Shi'ar race. Also known as Chandilar and (possibly) the Aerie, this was the planet from which the Shi'ar ruled their empire. Some texts describe this throneworld as an "artificial planet" but this has not been confirmed and may be wrong.
Like its empire, the Shi'ar Throneworld was located within the so-called "Shi'ar Galaxy" which is believed to be the spiral galaxy known on Earth as the Triangulum Galaxy, Messier 33 (or M33) and NGC 598. However, this has never been confirmed so the Shi'ar Galaxy could be some other galaxy which has no real-world counterpart.
By using the Omni-Wave Annihilator to destroy the Shi'ar Throneworld, the Kree not only wiped out billions of Shi'ar, they also destroyed the Shi'ar leadership (including Majestrix Lilandra Neramani) and presumably inflicted an enormous amount of damage to the morale of the Shi'ar, perhaps enough to cause the survivors to sue for peace instead of continuing the war.
In any event, after the throneworld's destruction, the only Shi'ar shown to be continuing to fight against the Kree were eleven members of the Imperial Guard. These Imperial Guardsmen were Flashfire, Glom, Hobgoblin, Hussar, Impulse, Manta, Mentor, Nightside, Smasher, Starbolt and Titan. Of these eleven, at least three would be killed before the war against the Kree Empire ended.
If any other Shi'ar warriors or starships continued the fight against the Kree, they were not depicted on-panel.
--What If...? II#55
The Kree personnel who were stationed in the control room for the Omni-Wave Annihilator. All of them were male Blue Kree who were not wearing military uniforms and none of their names were revealed.
At least a dozen of these brown-clad technicians were on duty in the Omni-Wave Annihilator's control room at the time of Deathbird's failed assassination attempt. Soon afterwards, the planet Earth was on the viewscreen when the new solo ruler of the Kree Empire, Ael-Dan, entered with the bound Captain America and the Kree privates who were escorting the prisoner.
Once in the control room, Ael-Dan spoke to the captive Terran about how he was going to teach him the meaning of war and to make him witness the beginning of the Kree Empire's million-year hegemony over the galaxy. After directing the Terran's attention to a large viewscreen displaying the planet Earth, Ael-Dan commanded the technicians to activate the Omni-Wave Annihilator. When a balding technician hesitantly began to remind the emperor that the Supreme Intelligence had forbidden its use, an enraged Ael-Dan immediately killed him. Realizing what would happen to him if he also questioned the mad ruler, a technician with a fuller head of hair quickly brought the weapon on-line and reported its status to the emperor. Once Ael-Dan gave the command to fire (by saying the word "now"), it was presumably this second technician who actually pushed the button that sent the lethal "cosmic lightning" towards Earth.
It may have been that same technician who soon afterwards pushed the button that sent those lethal energies to destroy the Shi'ar Throneworld. Or maybe that first button-pusher was huddled in a corner somewhere having a nervous breakdown and some other technician had had to push the button.
Note: It's a bit puzzling that the control room for a weapon that had never been used before, one whose use had been forbidden by the Supreme Intelligence, would just happen to be fully manned when the plot called for it. I suppose the obvious explanation is that Ael-Dan had secretly arranged to have the weapon brought to operational readiness soon after the Kree-Shi'ar War began and that he only felt free to use it once he had eliminated both his co-ruler and the former Supremor. Still, it seems a bit too convenient for me.
--What If...? II#55
images: (without ads)
What If...? II#55, page 6, panel 3 (main image)
pages 7-8 (destruction of Earth and its people)
page 9, panel 7 (video of Shi'ar Throneworld's destruction)
page 6, panels 4+5+6 (Kree technicians)
What If...? II#55 (November, 1993) - Len Kaminski (writer), Craig Brasfield (penciler), Frank Turner (inker), Rob Tokar (editor)
First Posted: 09/04/2021
Last updated: 09/01/2021
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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