I promised you all a reading guide for Heroes Reborn by Jason Aaron last month, so here is part one – the pre-reading guide!
Naturally, all of these Marvel events have at least some level of pre-reading to them, whether that be a long, sprawling must-read run, or a short can-read-or-not. Today, the lead up to Heroes Reborn can be seen as optional.
But, personally, I’d recommend you give it a read anyway, as Heroes Reborn is an extension of Jason Aaron’s Avengers run.
So, with that out of the way, let’s get into the pre-reading guide!
A new era for Earth’s Mightiest Heroes! Steve Rogers. Tony Stark. Thor Odinson. The big three are reunited at last! And just in time to save the world from total annihilation at the hands of their most powerful enemies yet – the 2,000-foot-tall space gods known as the Celestials! Behold the coming of the Final Host. But who will answer the call as a new team of Avengers assemble? Hint: one of them has a flaming skull. As Black Panther and Doctor Strange battle for their lives deep within the earth, Captain Marvel faces death and destruction raining down from the skies…and what about the Savage Hulk? Plus, no gathering of Avengers would be complete without a certain Prince of Lies! But what world-shaking connection exists between the Dark Celestials and Odin’s ancient band of Prehistoric Avengers?
If you thought you knew the beginnings of the Marvel Universe, you were wrong!
Odin and his Prehistoric Avengers represent a period of history that’s never been explored – until now! Witness the origin of the very first Ghost Rider, who rides a flaming woolly mammoth… and battles a savage and familiar foe! Back in the present, in the aftermath of their world-shaking battle against the Dark Celestials, the new Avengers team is officially formed – complete with a startling new headquarters at the top of the world! Behold the wonders of Avengers Mountain. But someone who doesn’t seem impressed is Namor, the ferocious lord of Atlantis – and his rage may turn the oceans red with blood!
Transylvania is burning! As vampire civil war throws the world into chaos, the mysterious Shadow Colonel and his squad of undead revolutionaries have one burning question on their murderous minds: Where is Dracula? And if the Avengers find him first, will the lord of the damned be friend or foe?
The war is over. And Earth’s Mightiest Heroes are looking to celebrate. That’s right – there’s a party at Avengers Mountain. But who invited the Squadron Supreme of America? The Challenge of The Ghost Riders. Robbie Reyes wants rid of the flame-headed monster inside him. So it’s time to do the common-sense thing: perform an exorcism on his car. Only problem is, Johnny Blaze, the King of Hell, has some plans of his own for the newest Ghost Rider and his Avengers friends.
Quick note: this volume ties into the War Of The Realms, so I’d make sure you’re all caught up with that as well!
The challenge of the Ghost Riders! Robbie Reyes wants to finally get rid of the flame-headed monster that lurks inside him. So it’s time to do the common-sense thing: perform an exorcism on his car. The only problem is, Johnny Blaze, the original Ghost Rider and current king of Hell, has some plans of his own for Robbie and his friends the mighty Avengers! Now, it’s Ghost Rider vs. Ghost Rider in a wild race through the deepest depths of the underworld, while the Avengers must fight for their lives against their own Celestial headquarters – now possessed by a rather shocking, rather murderous hell-damned soul!
Starbrand reborn. Get set for an epic space adventure that takes the Avengers to an alien prison – the size of a galaxy. There, a mysterious new wielder of the all-powerful Starbrand has suddenly appeared, unleashing cosmic chaos. It’s a good thing that the Avengers brought along their secret weapon – the Black Widow. But some of the most powerful figures from beyond the stars have been drawn to find the Starbrand as well. Behold the coming of the Three Heralds. Plus, Thor… infected by the alien parasites known as the Brood? It’s not what you’re expecting Prepare for a cosmic caper the likes of which you’ve never seen before
As Iron Man fights for his life in the distant past, the Avengers face an uncertain future! Trapped in an icy cave at the dawn of time, Tony Stark has lost most of his armor – and a good chunk of his mind. When the sun goes down and the devil comes around again, he may lost whatever’s left of his soul. And in the present, Earth’s mightiest villains unite! What do the king of Atlantis, the lord of vampires, the deposed duke of Hell, a mysterious Russian assassin and the secret boss of Wahington D.C.’s greatest super-team, have in common? They all really hate the Avengers! Worse still, mummies are rising from their graves. A dark god has invaded Asgard. And Moon Knight is unleashed! So begins the Age of Khonshu. So fall the Avengers!
The planet-burning cosmic firebird known as the Phoenix Force has returned ― and the Avengers are drawn into a globe-spanning battle for ultimate power! In the distant past of One Million B.C.E., one young girl’s only crime was being born with red hair…and her destiny will change human history forever! In the present, the Phoenix Force searches the globe for a new avatar ― and many of Marvel’s most powerful heroes and villains are contenders! As the battle to wield the Phoenix grows ever bloodier and more desperate, Thor leads the Avengers in a fight to contain it. But the quest is complicated by the Thunder God’s mysterious connection to the cosmic firebird! Who will be the all-new Phoenix?! Plus: Blade pays a dark price in the fight against the King in Black!
This one also ties into King In Black, so again, make sure you’re caught up there too.
Then, we have an additional extra:
Hyperion! Power Princess! Dr. Spectrum! The Whizzer! Nighthawk! Together they and their many allies are the Squadron Supreme – the mightiest heroes of their other-dimensional Earth. But when the Squadron institutes the far-reaching Utopia Project – vowing to abolish war and crime, to eliminate poverty and hunger, and to cure death itself – everything changes! Can they possibly succeed? What lines will they cross to achieve their lofty goals? When the Project reaches its zenith and the Earth falls under the Squadron’s complete control, when do heroes stop being heroes? And when the Squadron’s foes flee to the Marvel Universe, which side will Captain America take? Master writer Mark Gruenwald explores the ethics of justice in his best-known story!
This focuses on the Squadron Supreme, who are a very important part of the Heroes Reborn event, and while the event is pretty newbie-friendly, it could prove useful to read this too.
And that’s the end of part one to my Heroes Reborn! Look back next week for my reading guide of the main event!