Is Aiwass really Galactus?

So I was reading some old Silver Surfer comics the other day, and I found something… odd. Really odd.

It’s this panel:
"Every man and Every Woman is a Star"

In which Galactus, the Eater of Worlds and generally one of the most powerful beings in the Marvel Universe, speaks a line of philosophical gibberish. Except that it’s not just any line of philosophical gibberish. No indeed. It is, in fact, a direct quote of Aleister Crowley’s Liber vel Legis (or The Book of the Law, in English). Specifically, chapter one, verse three. (See for yourself.) And it seems rather unlikely that Steve Englehart, who is a very deliberate sort of a writer, used the line by chance. He at least was no doubt aware of its significance and origins (unlike his editor and a large number of his readers).

Funny thing about Liber vel Legis: Crowley always claimed that it was dictated to him by a spirit across April 8, 9 and 10, 1904. A spirit that Crowley referred to be the name Aiwass, and claimed was his own personal Holy Guardian Angel (caps in original).

Now, many later occultists have theorised that Aiwass was simply a part of Crowley’s subconscious (and I lean toward that interpretation myself). Maybe that is the case – in our world! The Marvel Universe, on the other hand, is considerably weirder than our world, though, and since it seems rather unlikely that Galactus would be reading the works of human occultists, I have to assume that the causal relationship runs in the opposite direction, and that it was Galactus who dictated Liber vel Legis to Crowley. Which might explain why Galactus is always finding reasons not to eat our particular world.

So there you go.

Except that there’s more.

You see, Aleister Crowley claimed that Lewis Carroll – the pen name of Charles Dodgson, author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Jabberwocky and Through The Looking Glass – was a holy seer of sorts. Robert Anton Wilson took this one step further, claiming that the Alice books were dictated to Dodgson by a spirit he called Lewis (in case you’re wondering: Carroll because the spirit allegedly sang, or caroled, the books to Dodgson), and that Lewis and Aiwass are one and the same.

So there’s a case to be made that in the Marvel Universe, this guy:
Galactus
is the true author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Jabberwocky, Through The Looking Glass and Liber vel Legis

Shocktoxin

Shocktoxin was created by an unrevealed US military contractor for use by S.H.I.E.L.D., who in turn issued them to members of the Secret Avengers team. Crafted into flechettes with a monofilament edge, Shocktoxin projectiles could slice through almost any armour, and shots that missed left little evidence as the compound dissolved in minutes if left in the open air.

A hit from a Shocktoxin flechette would allow the never toxin to do its work – and a single flechette can knock out a healthy bull for about six hours. Human test subjects reported experiencing truly horrifying nightmares while knocked out by the drug. It is not known what the bull experienced.

Fang

A drug made from the hemoglobin of vampires, Fang is dangerous and (thankfully) rare. Created by a 2000 year old vampire named Negus (who apparently once defeated Dracula in hand to hand combat), it was brought to New York City by him. Here, he abducted homeless people, dosed them with the drug and forced them to battle each other in cage match fights, until Spider-Man and Blade intervened.

The effects of Fang are temporary, but massive while they last. They effectively give the human user the physical traits of a vampire – fangs, super strength, really bad skin – for a few hours, plus a berserker rage that lasts for roughly three days even after the other effects wear off. Intense doses of UV light can make the effects wear off sooner, and there appears to be little lasting damage to the minds or bodies of the users afterwards (other than whatever injuries they may receive in the cage fights).

The Inevitable Super-Villain Army

It’s a time-honoured trope of superhero comics: sooner or later, one or another of the various A-list supervillains will decide to gather all the other (and hence, lesser) villain under their command, and be-devil the heroes with them. There’s a number of reasons why this idea is flawed to the point of suckage, and why it should be given a nice long rest:
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Forever Compound

The Forever Compund is an alchemical serum produced by the Brotherhood of the Shield. It is a diluted form of the Elixir of Immortality developed by Isaac Newton in 1652.

While it still retains the life-prolonging properties of its parent elixir, it doesn’t keep any of the other properties. In particular, it does not prevent the mind or body of the person injected with it from decaying.

Newton administered it to Nostradamus in 1652, which kept the seer alive and also kept his prophetic gifts intact until Nostradamus took the Elixir of Immortality three hundred years later.

Happy Pills

Little is known of Happy Pills, a highly addictive drug apparently created by Shi’ar criminals. Indeed, it’s likely that Happy Pills is only a nickname for the drug.

What little can be inferred regarding the drug suggests that is a potent painkiller that induces mild euphoria – no doubt the Shi’ar physiology’s equivalent of an opiate.

Sentry Serum

An unlikely chemical of tapping into that same power that caused the Ten Plagues of Egypt – i.e. the Wrath of God – Sentry Serum was created by a un-named Professor in an attempt to recreate the Super Soldier Serum.

Clearly, he succeeded beyond his wildest dreams. Just as clearly, the addict and theif who took the sole, untested sample of the serum, Robert Reynolds, was manifestly unsuited for the nigh-infinite power it unleashed in him.

It is unclear whether the serum caused his multiple personalities, or merely exacerbated an existing tendency in Reynolds, but in either identity – the ‘heroic’ Sentry or the evil ‘Void’ – he had more power than he could easily control. With his death, it is unlikely that the serum will ever be recreated.

The Implied Buffyverse

There are certain works that many would consider to more crossovers with the Buffyverse, but personally, I think of these three as implicit within it. Each of them has good reasons for being considered canonical in-universe, despite not being officially a part of it:
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The Centre Cannot Hold presents:

The first section of the new and revised Trade Paperback Timelines listings.

If you remember my announcement from just under a month ago, I promised a raft of new features for the timelines.

This is the first installment of those. There’s now a Frequently Asked Questions section, and a new Non-Comic Timeline covering the life of Elric of Melniboné, but those are lesser things.

The real changes are taking place in the Marvel Timelines section, especially the Earth-616 timeline (i.e. the main Marvel Universe). What used to be page 1 of that timeline has now been split up into 6 separate sections to make it easier to zero in on the bit you’re actually interested in – and every last page of the six has new books added to it. There’s about three times as many books listed in these six pages as there was in the one older page, with a few surprises (I hope) thrown in too. (They also, not coincidentally, leave plenty of room for expansion as new releases take place.)

The six new pages are, in chronological order:

I hope you’ll enjoy them – it’s been a labour of love putting this together, and there’s so much more yet to come. Although I think I’ve earned a little break before I five into the next secton.

An announcement for fans of my Marvel Timelines

I’m very gratified by the popularity of this feature – it’s far and away the most popular thing on this whole site – and I’m always trying to come up with ways to improve it. In fact, for the last little while, I’ve been working on a massive revision and expansion of it. The new version of the timeline will have the following features:

  • More detail in each entry – information about what issues are reprinted in it for every volume, and more details if they’re warranted.
  • More and smaller pages, for quicker load times.
  • Titles explaining what period the page covers, rather than just the numerical titles.
  • A few more subsidiary timelines spinning out of the main Marvel timeline.
  • More subheadings on pages to make it easier to locate major events.
  • A more detailed listing of what’s on each page, again in order to make it easier to locate major events.
  • A Frequently Asked Questions section to cover some of the more general information about my assumptions and rules of thumb for the Timelines that doesn’t belong on those pages themselves.
  • …and more besides.

So I hope you’ll bear with me, ‘cos it will take a little while longer yet, before I have everything sorted out to my satisfaction, but I promise, it will be worth it when I’m done.

I’m working from start to finish on the timeline, so you’ll probably still see the occasional addition to the later pages in the chronology for a little while, but as I complete each page, I’ll be adding updates only to the newer pages until I’m ready to bring in all the revised versions at once.

The Marvel Movieverse and the Asimoviverse

A more disparate pairing could hardly be imagined, and yet, they’re not so far apart. The key point of connection between the two is the importance of Artificial Intelligence in both settings.

Asimov’s Robots are, of course, iconic. And Tony Stark’s house/computer/suit/etc Jarvis (Just Another Really Very Intelligent System) is named in a way that only serves to emphasises how taken for granted this artificial intelligence is by Stark and his employees.
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Mutant Growth Hormone

Originally a powerful, non-addictive mutagen devised by X-Man Hank McCoy (a.k.a. The Beast), Mutant Growth Hormone has since been debased into a less potent but more addictive form, and shown up on the streets of New York City, usually abbreviated to MGH.

MGH is created from the DNA of a mutant (or mutate), and grants the user with limited superpowers for a brief period. Although most sellers of the drug claim that the powers granted are related to the person who the MGH was harvested from, this is in fact untrue, and the powers granted arise from the activation of latent mutant genes in the user.

Known DNA sources for MGH include Hank McCoy (who made the original formulation from his own DNA and took it himself, which may account for both the potency and permanency of the effects), Leland Owlsley (the criminal known as The Owl) and Mattie Franklin (the third Spider-Woman). No verified sample has ever been created from the DNA of Peter Parker (Spider-Man) although dealers frequently claim him as a source of the drug.

Related drugs: Kick.