Look at all the drama in page one, panel one! Between this and the cover…
…which says that the “Black Galaxy Saga” is starting, we know there’s something big in the works.
It starts when a new Watcher starts watching a part of space called The Black Galaxy, and the Rigellan species decides that if the watchers are looking here, they should too. So a Recorder robot ventures out and finds…
…That High Evolutionary has decided to set up camp in the Black Galaxy, where he will once again try to evolve the area’s species into something Godlike.
Meanwhile, the Celestials are also upset by High Ev’s presence, so they send a clone Thor to Earth.
Targeting him, but able to shoot and kill the clone, is Stellaris.
This is the character’s first appearance—She’ll be an enemy of Thunderstrike, which is who Eric Masterson will become when Marvel finally frees Thor from Tom DeFalco’s madness.
Speaking of which….
He’s still living with Hercules and trying to raise his young kid.
Eventually clone Thor (called “The Replicoid”) teams up with Thor and Hercules to fight Stellaris—who his powerful enough that they also need The Avengers’ help.
Turns out, Stellaris ain’t so bad. She’s just mad at the Celestials who destroyed her planet and she’s taking it out on Replicoid. During the fight, she actually kills the Thor clone and then promptly leaves to go try to foil other Celestial plans. Before dying, the Replicoid tells Thor and Hercules that they are needed in the Black Galaxy.
So, basically, we’re two issues into it and The Black Galaxy Saga has very little to do with the Black Galaxy so far.
Instead of going to help, though, Thor changes back to Eric Masterson for some more baby mama drama and he loses custody. Perhaps (mayhap?) due to that delay, High Evolutionary has time to create new Gods. Not New Gods, which were D.C.’s Jack Kirby creation.
Despite the fact that High Evolutionary is in another galaxy—the one where Ego The Living Planet was created in fact—the new Gods he’s created look like human gymnasts.
You have to love Hercules’ line, “One does not create a new race of Gods in the same fashion one readies a new cask of mead!”
Even though The Celestials wanted to stop High Ev, and Stellaris hates the Celestials, she also shows up in the Black Galaxy to foil Ev’s plans. Also a new Celestial is created.
For reasons I didn’t really understand, Thor and Hercules end up fighting Celestials in addition to High Evolutionary’s Gods. But I’m not complaining about the confusing narrative because something terrific happens…
At last! We’re free of the horrible tie between Thor and Eric Masterson!
In the end, The Celestials suck up and destroy The Black Galaxy and turn it into a new Celestial, Stellaris loses her armor in the event, High Evolutionary’s new God dudes are running around and so is High Ev, and Eric Masterson is a person again.
Actually, that’s not totally the end. Throughout, there are Tales of Asgard backups that I won’t be summarizing except to say that they culminate by becoming the main story in issue #425, where Odin, Surtur and the Celtic Gods have it out with Ymir on Earth—just as Thor, Herc, and Eric are returning from The Black Galaxy.
During the fight, Thor realizes he doesn’t have enough power so…
…He re-merges with Masterson.
God DAMN it!!!!
Issue #427 is an “aftermath” issue, which has Odin taking his Odinsleep nap, Heimdall rebuilding The Rainbow Bridge to Earth, and some other Asgard clean up. On Earth, the Wrecking Crew are causing problems but nobody from Asgard is there to stop them (yet). Also, Hercules decides he doesn’t want to be roomates with Eric Masterson anymore so he stays in Asgard.
One thing of relative importance is that New York City finally decided to get a police force specific to super-threats, seeing as how 90% of the Marvel Universe lives there: Code Blue. They’re the ones who try (and fail) to stop Wrecking Crew in this issue. Along with Excalibur.
It’s the cop team’s first appearance.
Excalibur appear, too, but their main story is next issue. And Earth Force continue to get appearances–in back ups. Ugh.
I should give it an “F” for making me think we were finally done with the Eric/Thor story, but I rated a C-.