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TIMELESS #1 teases a major character’s return and introduction to the Marvel Universe

How might the entry of a long-unseen character into the Marvel Universe impact the line next year?

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This week sees the release of Timeless #1 from Marvel Comics. The one-shot from writer Jed MacKay, artists Kev Walker, Greg Land & Jay Leisten, Mark Bagley & Andrew Hennessy, colorist Marte Gracia, and letterer Ariana Maher teases future events coming within the Marvel Universe in 2022 and beyond. Of all the teases, though, none is more tantalizing than what appears on the final story page of the issue, namely the logo for a major character who hasn’t been seen in years, and who may be about to officially enter the Marvel Universe.

<SPOILERS FOR TIMELESS #1 AFTER THE COVER IMAGE>

The final page of Timeless #1 finds Anatoly Petrov, a historian who had travelled with Kang for a week and witnessed multiple timelines and possible futures, pondering all he had seen. In particular, Petrov finds himself haunted by an image he saw of a stylized double-M insignia, a symbol longtime readers will recognize as the chest emblem of Miracleman.

The Miracleman emblem as it appeared on the back cover to Marvel’s MIRACLEMAN #1 reprint from 2014.

For those unfamiliar, Miracleman is the American version of Marvelman, a British character created by Mick Anglo in the ’50s as a Captain Marvel replacement after the popular Fawcett Comics series was discontinued. Saying the magic word ‘Kimota’ transformed ordinary Michael Moran into Marvelman, who was eventually joined by an extended Marvelman Family, including Kid Marvelman and Young Marvelman. The character was revived in the ’80s in the pages of Warrior by Alan Moore and Garry Leach, and the stories eventually made their way to the U.S. via Eclipse Comics, with the title character rechristened Miracleman to avoid legal complications with Marvel. Following six issues of reprints of the Warrior stories, Moore wrote ten more issues of the series for Eclipse with artists including Steve Bissette & John Totleben, and Neil Gaiman & Mark Buckingham continued the series following Moore & co.’s departure. Miracleman ran for a total of 24 issues before Eclipse folded.

The tease at the end of Timeless #1 is the first hint of new Miracleman material from Marvel Comics in years. The publisher announced they had secured the rights to the character from Anglo in 2009, and began reprinting the Eclipse Comics series in 2014. Marvel published new editions of twenty-one of the previously-published issues, along with an annual featuring a ‘lost’ story by Grant Morrison illustrated by Joe Quesada, as well as a new story by Peter Milligan and Michael Allred. Beyond that, there’s been no new standalone Miracleman material, aside from one page by Gaiman and Buckingham in 2019’s Marvel Comics #1000 anniversary one-shot.

The Miracleman page from MARVEL COMICS #1000

As you can see in the Marvel #1000 page, Miracleman’s relationship to the heroes of the Marvel Universe is through comics, where they exist as fiction in his universe. Bringing Miracleman into the Marvel Universe, as the tease at the end of Timeless suggests, would be a big deal, and have a huge impact on the balance of power in the Marvel U considering both Miracleman’s power levels and his history in his own universe, where he and his family have essentially taken over the world. Would Miracleman be considered a hero or villain in the Marvel U?

Time will tell if this latest Miracleman tease amounts to something concrete in 2022. Timeless #1 is on sale in stores and digitally now.

UPDATE 4:05 PM EASTERN: Marvel has released the following official teaser image with the final page image from Timeless #1, and the text: “How will Miracleman affect the future of the Marvel Universe?”

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