A young variant of Kang the Conqueror is teaming up with the X-Men villain, Apocalypse, to change the course of his own destructive future.
Warning: spoilers for Kang the Conqueror #2 ahead!
Marvel comics is teaming up two of its most iconic villains, Kang the Conqueror and Apocalypse in a poetic twist of fate. Despite the destruction both characters have wreaked upon the Marvel Universe time and again, Kang and Apocalypse have seldom crossed narrative paths. But now, in a newly unveiled storyline, Apocalypse is joining forces with the youngest version of Kang to thwart the conqueror’s future reign.
Kang aka Nathaniel Richards is well known for the multiple versions of himself that exist throughout the timestream due to his mastery over time travel. One of Nathaniel’s earliest known time-conquests was taking over the kingdom of ancient Egypt under the guise of Rama-Tut. Of course, this point in time intersects with the thousand-year period that Apocalypse, one of the oldest mutants known to history, was worshiped as a god in Egypt. Kang the Conqueror #2 by Jackson Lanzing, Collin Kelly and Carlos Magno showcases the great war over territory between Rama-Tut and Apocalypse that a young, vengeful and time displaced Nathaniel Richards finds himself in the middle of.
In an attempt to break away from his fate of becoming Kang the Conqueror, this teenage Nathaniel accidentally finds himself in Egypt where Rama-Tut enslaves him as a warrior in the battle against Apocalypse and his forces. By issue’s end, Rama-Tut has escaped back into the timestream following his defeat by the Fantastic Four, leaving behind a newly freed but more vindictive than ever young Nathaniel. The final pages see Nathaniel plotting his revenge against the future version of himself by kneeling before Apocalypse and promising the god-like mutant, “together, we can destroy Kang.” It appears that with Nathanial’s learned knowledge of his own future conquests and Apocalypse’s powerful resourcefulness, this duo has a solid chance at wiping Kang out from the timestream once and for all.
Perhaps most interesting of all about this cliffhanger, however, is its potential to intersect with what readers have only recently just discovered about Apocalypse’ past. In Jonathan Hickman’s X of Swords event, it was revealed that long ago, Apocalypse had a wife, children and an entire mutant community he lived amongst before they were all consumed by the demonic world of Amenth. Assuming these events transpired sometime before the events of Kang the Conqueror #2, this loss would be a relatively fresh wound for Apocalypse.
Given the fact that the first two issues of this series have explored a young variant of Nathaniel Richards who wishes to change his future by embracing life and love in place of conquest, Apocalypse and Nathanial may relate on an even deeper level than their hatred for Kang. Just as the forces of Amenth stole the love of Apocalypse’s life, Nathaniel felt a similar loss of love after Kang took the lives of the two women he fell for. Both these characters have been hardened by the experience of losing that which they chose to live for, leaving room for quite the interesting team-up dynamic.
Still, despite Hickman recently adding this backstory to Apocalypse’ history, it’s unclear if it will be addressed or utilized in any meaningful way in this particular miniseries. The spotlight of this story is on Nathaniel and bringing Apocalypse’ baggage into the mix has the potential of derailing the journey readers have been taken on thus far. Either way, next issue’s team up between Apocalypse and a young Kang is bound to bring the entertainment, no matter the context.
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About The Author
Andrew Cavalluzzi (106 Articles Published)
Andrew is a Los Angeles based entertainment writer. As an indulger in all things movie, comic book, video game and TV series related, he spends most of his breathing time racking up knowledge in all those categories. His obsession with the Marvel Universe knows no bounds and his endless pursuit to find the perfect formation of words that best captures his adoration for storytelling will probably be the end of him.
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