Warlock Chronicles #1: Review

Jul 1993
Jim Starlin, Tom Raney

Story Name:

Things past

Review & Comments

4 stars

Warlock Chronicles #1 Review by (November 5, 2022)
This issue is an Infinity Crusade crossover with an embossed foil cover. It spins off from IC#1.

Darklore is I believe 1 of the chars that Eternity predicted in Warlock & Infinity Watch #15 that Adam Warlock would meet. He is the 1 whose trust Adam will betray. He is based on a previous Starlin character Darklon The Mystic in various issues of Warren Comics' Eerie starting with #76.

Jim Starlin proposed this origin of the Infinity Gems from a single primordial being in Thanos Quest #2. This entity will be temporarily recreated and called Nemesis in Avengers/Ultraforce #1. It will later be identified with the 1st Cosmos/Firmament.

Darklore and Meer'lyn will return in WIW#29, well after the IC event.

Adam Warlock will appear briefly in IC#2 before our next issue.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Warlock Chronicles #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
In Infinity Crusade #1 the Goddess banished Adam Warlock to a far dimension. Later in that issue we saw a hand reaching out to his comatose body. Now we meet the owner of that hand Darklore with his tiny winged female companion Meer'lyn. They can't revive the stranger but Darklore realises that the gem on his brow is sentient. He communicates with it and it recounts its history. It is 1 of 6 gems (ie the Soul Gem of the Infinity Gems) which once were a single being but they got split into the 6 gems. Since then they've each acted through a succession of host bodies.

The Soul Gem eventually fell into the hands of the High Evolutionary who cautiously didn't wear it. Meanwhile its current host was created as Him by a group of Earth scientists called the Hive. Birthed from his cocoon Him rebelled against the evil intentions of his fathers and left Earth (Fantastic Four #66-67). Him and HE met after the Evolutionary created Counter-Earth. Herbert Wyndham gave Him the Soul Gem, the name Adam Warlock and the mission to protect his planet from the Man-Beast (Marvel Premiere #1).

Later Warlock came into conflict with the Universal Church Of Truth led by Adam's evil future self Magus. He allied with Thanos and Gamora to prevent the Magus from happening (Jim Starlin's run in Strange Tales and Warlock). But Thanos worshipped Death and later collected all the Infinity Gems to try to wipe out all life in the universe to please her. He was defeated by Warlock, Captain Marvel, the Avengers, Spider-Man and Thing (Av Annual #7 & Marvel Two-In-One Annual #2), but Warlock died along with his companions Gamora and Pip the Troll and they were transported to Soul World within the Soul Gem.

Thanos learned that the Infinity Gems were much more powerful than he thought and he collected them again (Thanos Quest mini-series). He set them in a gauntlet and they made him a god. But Adam and his companions came back from the peace of Soul World to oppose him in the Infinity Gauntlet event, which ended with Warlock in possession of the Infinity Gauntlet and its power. In Warlock & Infinity Watch #1 a cosmic court stripped him of the power but allowed him to keep the Soul Gem and distribute the others (in WIW#2) to 5 trusted guardians (Gamora, Pip, Moondragon, Drax The Destroyer and a 5th who the Gem isn't allowed (by Marvel Comics) to reveal) as the Infinity Watch.

But while a god Adam had removed his good and evil sides to leave him a rational being. The evil side turned into a new version of Magus. Warlock had to ally with Thanos again to defeat him (in the Infinity War event). And a few hours ago his good side turned up as the Goddess, who banished him here injured and in a coma.

But now the Soul Gem chooses to abandon Adam and take Darklore as his new host, revealing that he had turned all his earlier hosts into slaves to his will and only Warlock had successfully resisted that. Darklore is a mage and uses his sorcery to hold the gem off, but not for long. Meer'lyn tries to help but is blasted unconscious for her pains. Darklore is entranced but still mentally fighting against the Gem's control ...

... and then Warlock revives and takes the Soul Gem back. Darklore tells him that the dimension they are in is a long way down the 'corridor' from Adam's home universe. (Jim Starlin introduced us to this dimensional corridor during the Infinity War event.) Darklore admits that he went there years ago. He could take Warlock there but it would takes months off the urgent quest he is on to find a talisman that will help him free a neighbouring dimension from the grip of an evil dictator. However he recently encountered a rip in the dimensional fibre which he senses is somehow connected to Adam. So he opens a mystic portal to take the 3 of them there.

Once there Warlock realises that this is a rupture in reality which can only have been caused by the Reality Gem (the 1 guarded by the unknown member of the Watch). Adam knows that the guardian wouldn't have done this and reasons that he must be trapped in the rift. (We know that the Goddess has the Reality Gem and sent its guardian away in IC#1.) He also predicts that left alone the rift would destroy all realities. So he sets off into the rift to undo the harm, rescue the guardian, and hopefully also find his way home. He says goodbye to Darklore and Meer'lyn, but the mystic tells his companion that he senses they will meet him again.

Tom Raney
Keith Williams
Gina Going
Tom Raney (Cover Penciler)
Keith Williams (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Jack Morelli.
Editor: Craig Anderson. Editor-in-chief: Tom DeFalco.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Plus: Darklore, Meer'lyn.

> Warlock Chronicles: Book info and issue index

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