rigel-3-thor131-pg5 RIGEL-3

Official Name: Rigel-3

Nature: Extraterrestrial world (destroyed), Rigel star system, Milky Way galaxy

Habitat: Temperate, 77% covered with water;
Gravity: 92% Earth's
Atmosphere: 76% nitrogen, 22% oxygen

Natives: Formerly Tana Nile, the Grand Commissioner/High Commissioner/Imperial Colonizer Emeritus, at least one Indestructible, Recorders (notably Recorder#211), Rigellian mutants (Bolaa, Gerr, Jukka, and Tryx ), others

Population: None;
    formerly nine billion

Capital City: Unrevealed 

Government: Formerly a technocratic empire ruled by the Grand Commissioner

Languages: Rigellian

Defense: Colonizers, Indestructibles, a vast array of defense satellites, a field shielding them from detecting by Galactus (which weakened and eventually failed)

Places of Interest: Various space stations and starships are noted, but, as far as I could tell, landmarks on Rigel-3 itself were not identified

Visitors: Silas Grant, Balder Odinson, Thor Odinson, Sif

Enemies: Ego the Living Planet, Rhunians (aka Black Stars);
    possibly Surtur;
    formerly Thor Odinson

First Appearance: (As "Command Planet") Thor I#131 (August, 1966);
    (as Rigel) 
Thor I#132 (September, 1966)

History:rigel-3-thor131-pg6-pan1-computer
(Thor I#131 (fb) - BTS) - The Rigellians on Rigel-3 were threatened by the menace (Ego the Living Planet) within the Black Galaxy (actually a bioverse, rather than a galaxy).

(Thor I#132 - BTS) - Although the Rigellians could accurately chart the Black Galaxy, no Rigellian who entered the Black Galaxy survived to tell of it.

(Thor I#131) - Tana Nile contacted the Command Planet from Earth, reaching the Division of Claims and registering her claim to Earth. While Tana noted that Earth (on "the perimeter of sector five") was unregistered and she wanted to claim full colonization rights, the Division representative told her that they must check their file of "fringe area galaxies," and they instructed her to maintain contact.

    After a computerized survey lasting but a brief micro-second, the Division confirmed that there were no claims in that space sector, that all was in order, and that they would dispatch an official inspection team at once: As soon as they would transmit their report, their claim would be approved. Tana countered that they must send no inspection team, as if they were observed, it might lead to battle. However, the Division representative told her that Colonizers were invincible and that nothing could affect them, except the menace of the Black Galaxy, of course. He then notified her that inspectors had been dispatched and that she should await their arrival. As the Division representative ended the transmission, the inspectors ship departed, noting their star drive to be operational and that their destination was Earth.rigel-3-thor218-surface

(Thor I#131 - BTS) - After the inspectors captured Thor in a proton cage, they took him aboard their ship and headed back to Rigel-3, hoping that by studying him (as a being who had resisted a Rigellian min thrust), they could find a way to defeat the one within the Black Galaxy. They set their ship on a robot control trajectory back to Rigel-3, during which time Thor broke free and overpowered the Rigellian inspectors.

(Thor I#131) - Tana Nile contacted "Power Planet 4, Constellation Rigel," and requested a Space Lock be energized. The Space Lock was indeed energized, and it sent a beam across space, containing Earth within its grip.

(Thor I#132 - BTS) - As Thor approached Rigel, a group of Rigellians aboard Sky-Station 14-R confronted and tried to stop him, but Thor overpowered them and accompanied them to Rigel. The Colonizers then dispatched an Indestructible to destroy him, but Thor incapacitated the Indestructible by turning its own immobilizer beam back on it. 

(Thor I#132 - BTS) - A deadly beam from within the Black Galaxy destroyed a Rigellian space cruiser. 

(Thor I#132) - Observing this space cruiser's destruction within Control Central, the Grand Commissioner was concerned of the dual threats of the Black Galaxy and the invader from Earth's solar system; however, he conceived of a way to solve them both. The Grand Commissioner then had an attendant activate the matter transmitter to send him to their Power Planetoid.

    Swiftly arriving there, the Grand Commissioner noted that they must protect the Space Lock at all costs. Tractor beams pulled Thor away from the Space Lock as he approached it, bringing him down to the planetoid where he overpowered Rigellians seeking to stop him. When Thor turned anew to the Space Lock, the Grand Commissioner bade him halt, introduced himself, and told him of the threat of the Black Galaxy. Taking Thor to the Tower of Telescopes, the Grand Commissioner showed Thor the Black Galaxy and promised to release Earth from the Space Lock if he could stop the the menace that threatened to break out of its shadowy confines. The Grand Commissioner had Recorder#211 accompany him and record whatever he learned in case he never returned. 

(Thor I#132 - BTS) - Aboard a Rigellian starship, Thor and the Recorder entered the Black Galaxy, finding it instead to be a Bio-Verse, composed of living biological matter.  Therein, they were confronted by Ego the Living Planet.

(Thor I#133 - BTS) - Thor defeated Ego, who vowed to seal itself off in his bio-verse and to never again attack Rigel or other galaxies. rigel-3-thor160-p17-pan3-ship-launch

(Thor I#134 - BTS) - As Thor and the Recorder approached the periphery of Rigel, a previously-programmed Colonizer sentry ship fired a mesa beam that drew them into the ship. The Rigellians praised Thor's success, and they assured him they had already given the order to declare Earth's solar system to the Colonizers. rigel-3-thor218-orbit

    When the Recorder sensed a rapidly approaching massive power source (Galactus, although this was not known to them at the time), the Rigellians ordered "time warp escape drive -- mach thrust," and they rapidly departed. 

    The Rigellians then informed Tana Nile that the Space Lock on Earth had been removed and that Earth was not to be colonized. They subsequently returned with Thor to Earth and collected Tana, telling her the the High Commissioner had chosen her to be his wife; having loved him from afar for years, she was happy to return to Rigel.

(Thor I#160 (fb) - BTS) - To address the threat of the immensely powerful Galactus and the weakening shield that had hidden the Rigellians from Galactus' detection, Tana was sent to recruit Thor's aid via Rigellian spacecraft.

(Thor I#160) - Tana informed Thor of a threat to many worlds (and galaxies). After Thor agreed to help, she led him aboard her ship, and they departed Earth; en route, she detailed the threat of Galactus.

    Tana and Thor soon after met with the Grand Commissioner, who told Thor that his people had hidden from Galactus in the past via a shield that was growing weaker over time. After Tana noted that they dared not wait until they were found and decimated, the Grand Commissioner sent the Recorder to join Thor against Galactus. The two boarded a craft that would take them to Galactus.

(Thor I#160 - BTS) - The craft carried Thor and Recorder#211 into the Black Galaxy where Galactus was confronting Ego. The energies released between the two cosmic combatants destroyed their craft.

(Thor I#162) - Having saved Ego from Galactus, Thor and the Recorder were returned by Ego to Rigel, and Thor noted that Rigel's ever-orbiting satellites of defense seemed truly endless in number. Eventually, a gleaming multi-purpose space station, poised above the heart or Rigel, drew them to its center, and the Recorder asked the Rigellians who met them to bring them to the Grand Commissioner. 

    Via the Grand Commissioner's porta-communiscreen, Thor's success was electronically flashed throughout the galaxy, and the Grand Commissioner praised Thor 's strength and valor before instructing the removal of the Recorder's memory bank and the Recorder's subsequent deactivation. However, at Thor's insistence, the Recorder's memories were instead transcribed (by Tana Nile), and the Recorder was allowed to remain active and retain his memories. Thor then departed via Mjolnir, returning to Asgard.rigel-3-thor218-exodus

(Thor I#201 (fb)) - The Grand Commissioner summoned Tana, telling her that while they could not colonize Earth, they needed an Earth-type world for unspecified reasons. With only primitive planets of that type available, the Grand Commissioner sent Tana on a mission into the Bioverse/Black Galaxy.

(Thor I#201 (fb) - BTS) - Tana landed on the surface of Ego, blasting free a living slab of stone and placing it within a special isotope container on her ship. 

    Tana then sped to the the galaxy's "eastern rim" and landed on a planet (which was somewhere in the stone age, with Neanderthal like people being present) called Blackworld by humanity while being nameless to the Rigellians.

    While Blackworld was rapidly terraformed using the portion of Ego, the portion of Ego itself evolved into Ego-Prime.

(Thor I#201 - BTS) - Ego-Prime ultimately destroyed Blackworld.

(Thor I#400) - Catapulted across time and space streams by their battle, Thor and Surtur encountered Rigel-3 (see comments).

(Thor I#217 - BTS) - In Asgard, Tana listened as Odin announced a threat that would first destroy the world of the Colonizers and then the worlds of men.rigel-3-thor218-destroyed

(Thor I#218 - BTS) - Tana joined Balder, Silas, Sif, and Thor aboard the Starjammer in an Odin-directed mission to investigate the menace to the Rigel.

(Thor I#218 / Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe II (Deluxe Edition)#11: Rigellians (see comments) - As the deadly Black Stars (led by the Rhunians) approached, the nine billion Rigellians still living on Rigel-3 escaped aboard a fleet of gigantic starships via the plan of the Grand Commissioner. 

    Over seven hundred such ships were part of this fleet, with each ship having 5000 chambers, each of which held thousands of Rigellians.

(Thor I#218 - BTS) - Colonizer 12 reported to the Grand Commissioner as the last of the ships had taken off and the command planet was deserted. While Colonizer 12 praised this as a miracle, the Grand Commissioner lamented that they should not boast of their cowardice and that there was no honor in what they had done, merely expedience. Nonetheless, the Grand Commissioner agreed that there was no hope to withstand the Black Stars and that there would not have been honor in facing them.

    The Grand Commissioner further noted that this flight was only a temporary solution as the Black Stars would eventually reach them wherever they went.

(Thor I#218) - As the Starjammer arrived on Rigel-3, Tana was excited to see her homeworld. Although Rigel initially seemed vacant, the Rigellians mutants Bolaa, Gerr, Jukka, and Tryx soon assaulted them. Recognizing their attackers, Tana was nonetheless caught in a lasso along with Silas. After Thor forced an end to the conflict, the Rigellian mutants revealed their fearful motivation, after which they accepted Thor's offer to join them in locating the Rigellians. rigel-3-thor218-vacuumed

(Thor I#218) - Shortly after the Starjammer's departure, the Black Stars arrived and destroyed Rigel-3, shattering it with multi-blasts of cosmic energy. Cities spun into space on mile-wide shards of stone until the Rhunians extended giant space-scoops, which used tractor fields to pull the planetary debris into them; these giant waste disposal units would break down the fragments into pure energy, which would be used to power the machines of the Rhunians. 

(Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe II (Deluxe Edition)#11: Rigellians) - Virtually all of the mutant worker race were left behind and destroyed along with Rigel-3.

(Thor I#218 - BTS) - Guided by Jukka's knowledge of Rigellian navigation charts he had glimpsed, the Starjammer caught up to the Rigellian fleet.

Comments: Created by Stan "The Man" Lee, Jack "King" Kirby, and Vince "The Prince" Colletta.

    Stan originally described Rigel-3 in Thor I#131 as "a planet so large, in a galaxy so distant that it beggars are poor mortal power of description.
    Thor I#162 (also Stan) referred to "Rigel galaxy."
    Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe II (Deluxe Edition)#11: Rigellians entry noted that previous sources referring to Rigel as being from another galaxy were in error. That source also incorrectly specified the number as nine million Rigellians who escaped Rigel-3 before its destruction. The correct number as per the original story is nine BILLION.

    The physical characteristics of Rigel-3 were revealed in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe I#8: Appendix to Alien Races: Rigellians

    In Thor I#218, the Grand Commissioner noted that the Rigellians were colonizers because they "hate the stink of bodies around us," and they sought other worlds to relieve the overcrowding on their own world. 

    It seems that many adventures/encounters involving Rigel take place in starships, but it's really hard to tell sometimes; where it is noted that events occur in a ship, I've specified. I've covered the events of the Rigellians from their first appearance until the destruction of Rigel in this profile...

Rigellian worlds

Courtesy of Donald Campbell:

  1. Rigel-3 (aka the Command Planet of the Rigellian Empire) was destroyed by the menace of the Black Stars in Thor I#218.
    1. Earlier and later stories identified the command planet as being in the constellation of Rigel which is problematic because there is no such constellation.
      1. In the real world, the star Rigel (actually a quadruple star system) is part of the constellation of Orion and, as a super giant star that is less than 10 million years old, has not existed long enough for an intelligent species to evolve on any planets that might be orbiting it. 
        1. The Rigel star system references can be explained easily enough in that the super giant star Rigel you identified is a human designation, while the Rigellians almost certainly designated their own system, making it a separate star named Rigel.
          …or, perhaps, the age of the star Rigel in the Marvel Universe
          is just one of many differences between the real world and the Marvel Universe.
          --Snood
    2. Annihilation: Ronan called the cause of the destruction of Rigel-3 into question, but the destruction has been clearly shown on panel, and no further resolution was given. I think it is likely that the information told to Tana was just part of a plot to manipulate her into acting against Ronan.
      --Snood
    3. Also, there were 9 Billion Rigellians on Rigel-3 when it had to be evacuated, not 9 million as some Handbooks entries state.
  2. The fact that the Rigellians had found a new homeworld was first revealed in Iron Man I#111 (June, 1978) but it's name was not revealed at that time.
  3. rigel-3-thor400-rigelliansrigel-3-thor400-surtur"Rigel-3" did appear in Thor I#400 (February, 1989) but only during a brief visit by a battling Thor and Surtur who were being "catapulted across the space and time streams" by their battle so it may well have been in a time before the Black Stars destroyed it.
  4. In Thor I#419 (July, 1990), the "command planet" of the Colonizers is identified as being close to the Black Galaxy and in Thor I#423 (Late September, 1990) this planet was identified as being the new homeworld of the Colonizers but was then abandoned when the Colonizers detected a vast host of Celestials entering their space quadrant. Maybe they came back later?
  5. In Thor 2000/2 (March, 2000), the planet "Rigel" was attacked by Mangog and "Thanos" who wiped out 88% of its population. Tana Nile was mentioned but the female Rigellian who spoke to Thor was not actually identified as being her in that story.
    1. I think Thor Tana Nile being name dropped and then Thor calling her “milady” are pretty compelling for it being Tana that gives Thor the info.
      --Snood
  6. In Thanos I#1 (December, 2003), Thanos had a conversation with Adam Warlock on the surface of "Rigel-3" which Thanos identified as a planet that had been destroyed by one of his doppelgangers (i.e., Thanosi). Thanos mentioned that more than five million Rigellians had died and that the planet had been so badly damaged that the Rigellians had abandoned it and established "New Rigel-3." This issue also mentioned for the first time that the Rigellians' major defense system allows them to teleport their entire planet as far away as another galaxy in order to escape any threat.
  7. In Thanos I#2 (January, 2004), Thanos teleported from New Rigel-3 to Rigel-18 where he found Galactus has focused a parabolic antenna on the Rigellians' sun. This suggests that the two planets are orbiting the same star and thus in the same planetary system.
  8. In Thanos #3 (February, 2004), Galactus used energy drained from Rigel-18's volcanic core to cause "Rigel-18's sun" to go nova and destroy the entire star system. Thanos was able to delay Galactus enough for the planet to be evacuated but what about New Rigel-3? Was it teleported away or were the two planets actually in different star systems all along?
  9. In Thanos I#6 (April, 2004), Thanos used the Rigellian planetary defense system to teleport "old Rigel-3" into close proximity to Rigel-18, causing the two planets to collide with Galactus and Hunger between them. To ensure a large enough explosion, Thanos had previously placed a sizable nuclear arsenal on old Rigel-3 at the point of impact. 
    1. The Spacelock technology referenced in Tana's original appearances (Thor I#129-134) and mentioned as the "Planet Lock" technology, which Tana suspected may have been stolen by the Axi-Tun circa Star Masters#1-3 and Cosmic Powers Unlimited#4-5 fits nicely with the defense technology Thanos referenced and used to destroy “old” Rigel-3 (which would presumably be the one his duplicate devastated, which would make it the second (at least) Rigel-3) and Rigel-18.
      --Snood
  10. In Secret Invasion: Inhumans#3-4 (December, 2008-January, 2009), the Inhumans Karnak and Gorgon traveled to the planet "Rigel 3" in search of a Rigellian Recorder than was said to have cracked the Skrull communications algorithm.
  11. In Guardians of the Galaxy: Tomorrow's Avengers#1 (September, 2013), the Drax story is specifically set on "Rigel 3, the third planet orbiting the star Rigel in the Milky Way Galaxy." Clearly a mistake but one that could easily be explained away. Given that the Rigellians have the ability to teleport planets across even galactic distances, one would presume that they must have used this technology to transport their new homeworld (New Rigel-3?) into the orbit previously occupied by their original homeworld before its destruction.

    Further from me/Snood:

  12. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Master Edition#11 (1991)’s Tana Nile profile referenced her usual base of operations as Command Planet Rigel II. Based on the timing of things, that would likely seem to have been the planet in Thor I#419-423. However, as Donald noted above, it is unrevealed whether the Rigellians returned to this world or not. It makes the most sense to me that they stayed with the same homeworld, but that obviously doesn’t mean that that is what they did.
  13. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z hardcover#11 (January, 2010)’s profile noted “Tana, now promoted to Prime Administrator on Rigel-Z, investigated and was captured by the Axi-Tun.” (in reference to the story in Star Masters#1-3 and Cosmic Powers Unlimited#4-5). I don’t find Rigel-Z referenced…perhaps “Z” was a misread of a stylized “3”? Or maybe I missed the reference to "Z"?
  14. Guardians of the Galaxy: Infinite Comic I#2 (Rocket Raccoon; 2013) referenced Rigel Seven, as did Rocket Raccoon II#1 and #3 (2014), in which Blackjack O'Hare (posing as another being like Rocket (Raccoon) had murdered Wheezey, apparently an agent of Funtzel.
  15. Free Comic Book Day: Rocket Raccoon (2014) referenced Rigel VI
  16. Rigel-76: The Infinites, massively powerful beings from another dimension, slew the entire population of colony world Rigel-76. Although the Avengers convinced the Infinites torestore the planet itself, the lost Rigellians were not revived.

    Additionally, from Carl Farmer:
  17. In Wolverine & the X-Men #7 (2012), Professor Xanto Starblood (who came to Earth to kill Broo) was the head of the Intergalactic Anthropology Department at the University of Rigel-3. 

  18. Anyway, from my perspective, we've got:

    1. Rigel-3 (aka the Command Planet) as the Rigellian homeworld until its destruction in Thor I#218
    2. A new homeworld for the Rigellians was found in Iron Man I#111, and it was subsequently designated as Rigel-3 in honor of its predecessor
    3. The Rigellian Command Planet (II as per the OHotMU ME) seen in Thor I#419-423 was abandoned due to a threat that was resolved. They either reclaimed that world or found yet another world and called it Rigel-3. I prefer to think that they returned to this command planet after the threat was resolved.
    4. Rigel-3 was devastated by Thanos, leading the Rigellians to abandon it and claim a new world as "New Rigel-3."
      1. This "Old" Rigel-3 was then destroyed by Thanos (destroying Rigel-18 in the process)
    5. I'm not quite clear on what happened with New Rigel-3 in the Thanos series, but apparently it survived...it was either not in the same star system as Rigel-18 or they used their Space/Planet Lock technology to move it away.
      1. New Rigel-3 MAY have been moved into the Rigel star system in the position of the former world destroyed by the Rhunians/Black Stars.
    6. So, we have a minimum of three Rigel-3's...(two "Rigel-3" (both destroyed) and one "New Rigel-3).

Profile by Snood.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Rigel-3 should be distinguished from 


images: (without ads)
 
Thor I#131, pg. 5 (command planet);
        pg. 6, panel 1 (surveying computer);
    #160, pg. 17, panel 3 (Rigellian craft departing with Thor & Recorder);
    #218, pg. 3, panel 1 (exodus);
        pg. 6, panel 1 (Starjammer approaching);
            panel 3 (surface);
        pg. 10-11 (Rigel-3 destroyed);
        pg. 12, panel 3-4 (Rigellian remnants sucked into Rhunian space-scoops);
Thor I#400, pg. 22, panel 4 (Thor and Surtur fighting across time and space and appearing on Rigel-3);
        pg. 23, panel 1 (Rigellians commenting on the encounter);


Appearances:
Thor I#131-134 (August-November, 1966) - Stan "The Man" Lee (writer/editor), Jack "King" Kirby (penciler), Vince "The Prince" Colletta (inker)...also Smilin' Stan Lee, Jolly Jack Kirby, and Vivacious Vince Colletta
Thor I#160 (January, 1969) -
- Stan Lee (writer/editor), Jack Kirby (penciler), Vince Colletta (inker)
Thor I#162 (March, 1969) - Stan Lee (writer/editor), Jack Kirby (penciler), Vince Colletta (inker)
Thor I#201 (July, 1972) - Gerry Conway (scripter), John Buscema (penciler), Jim Mooney (inker), Stan Lee (editor)
Thor I#217 (November, 1973) - Gerry Conway (scripter), John Buscema (penciler), Sal Buscema (inker), Roy Thomas (editor)
Thor I#218 (December, 1973) - Gerry Conway (scripter), John Buscema (penciler), Jim Mooney (inker), Roy Thomas (editor)
Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe I#8 (August, 1983) - Mark Gruenwald (editor/head writer/designer), Peter Sanderson, Mike Lerer, Tom DeFalco, Dan Fingeroth (writers), Frederick Baumann, Myra David, Robert Simpson, Joanne Harras, Roger Stern, Kurt Busiek (research), Paty Cockrum (penciler for Rigellians entry), Josef Rubinstein (inker), Michael Carlin (associate editor/designer)
Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition#11 (October, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer/producer), Peter Sanderson, Steve Saffel (writers/researchers), Dennis Janke (Rigellians penciler), Josef Rubinstein (inker), Harry Eisenstein, Marc Siry, David Wohl (editorial assistants), Howard Mackie (assistant editor)
Thor I#400 (February, 1989) - Tom DeFalco (writer), Ron Frenz (penciler), Joe Sinnott (inker), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z Update#3 (October, 2010) - Jeff Christiansen (head writer/coordinator), Mike O'Sullivan, Stuart Vandal, Markus Raymond, & Mike Fichera (assistant coordinators), Mike O'Sullivan, Stuart Vandal, Sean McQuaid, Michael Hoskin, Madison Carter, Markus Raymond, Rob London, Kevin Garcia, Chris Biggs, Jacob Rougemont, & Ronald  Byrd (writers), Dennis Janke (Rigellians penciler; refurbished), James Emmet & Joe Hochstein (editorial assistants), Alex Starbuck & Nelson Ribeiro (assistant editors), Jennifer Grunwald & Mark D. Beazley (editors, special projects), Jeff Youngquist (editor)


First posted: 10/10/2021
Last updated: 12/12/2021

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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