S.W.O.R.D. has just turned up in WandaVision, and it begs the question: Just what is S.W.O.R.D?
Well, I’m here to answer that question, and give you some comic recommendations!
Let’s start with the basics first:
What does s.w.o.r.d. stand for?
In the comics, it stands for Sentient World Observation and Response Department, but it the world of WandaVision and the further MCU, it stands for Sentient Weapon Observation and Response Department.
What does s.w.o.r.d. do?
S.W.O.R.D. is a government agency which deals with extraterrestrial threats to the world. Think of it as S.H.I.E.L.D, but it deals with threats from space.
where is S.W.O.R.D. based?
Its base, in the comic world is, naturally, in space. Now, we’ve seen a base on Earth in the MCU so far, but that isn’t to say there isn’t a space counterpart – after all, we did see Fury on a ship at the end of Spider-Man: Far From Home. Even back then, a lot of fans thought that that was the first hint of S.W.O.R.D.’s space headquarters, known as The Peak. But, with no confirmation as of yet, the only thing I can say is: only time will tell.
Who is in charge?
Now, it’s revealed in WandaVision who’s been running S.W.O.R.D., and who build it from the ground up, so I won’t go into that, just in case you haven’t seen the episode yet.
But, in the comics, S.W.O.R.D. is run by a woman called Abigail Brand, a green-haired, mysterious character, who’s actually more secretive than Fury. Literally, the only things known about Brand in the comic universe are that she’s 28 years old at the time of Secret Invasion, and that she runs S.W.O.R.D.
Who Works for S.W.O.R.D.?
There’s been a fair few characters who’ve ended up working for S.W.O.R.D. over the years. Obviously, Monica Rambeau is one of them in the MCU, but in the comics there’s been a lot more.
Some agents over the years have included Beast, Spider-Woman, Magneto and Cable!
Obviously, there are also original characters like Agent Deems, who is autistic (though I’ll have to check out how good the representation is on that front), but there has been a fair bit of crossover with the heroes we know and love too.
What comics should i read if i want to know more?
The best place to start is Astonishing X-Men by Joss Whedon, specifically Volume 3, which is where they first turn up.
After that, they also turn up in the Secret Invasion (written by Brian Michael Bendis) storyline, as well as Dark Reign (also written by Brian Michael Bendis).
But, they do also have two solo comics, conveniently named S.W.O.R.D. Volume 1 (written by Kieron Gillen) and S.W.O.R.D. Volume 2 (written by Al Ewing). My only bit of advice would be that Volume 2 is written as a tie into Reign Of X, which is part of the Dawn Of X/X Of Swords event, so I’d catch up on that first!
Volume 1 though, you should be fine to read as a standalone.
And that’s really all you need to know, S.W.O.R.D. isn’t a massive part of the comics like S.H.I.E.L.D., so there’s far less comics/events involving them. But what there is, is fantastic and definitely worth checking out!
I hope this helped you, and if you have any questions, please feel free to leave them down below and I’ll do my best to answer them!