The 10 Longest-Running Secrets In Marvel Comics

The Marvel Universe is a place with many secrets. From universe shattering ones to minor ones, these secrets have shaped the universe in ways that weren’t apparent until much later. Some of them have origins in the foggiest reaches of time, while others take root closer to the present.


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When revealed, some of these secrets changed the way the heroes and villains of the Marvel Universe looked at their world. Exploring the breadth and depth of the Marvel Universe in fresh and bold ways, once these long-running secrets were exposed, no one could look at anything the same as they did before.

10/10 Iron Man Stole A Lock Of Thor’s Hair In The Early Days Of The Avengers

Iron Man is an engineer, first and foremost. He’s all about solving problems in the most efficient manner, which isn’t always the best for the people around him. Iron Man’s been known to keep secrets and one of those eventually leads to Bill Foster’s death.

In the Avengers’ early days, Iron Man stole some of Thor’s hair and kept it for cloning purposes. This secret wouldn’t come back into play for years until Iron Man, Reed Richards, and Hank Pym created a cybernetic Thor clone. Unfortunately, the clone didn’t have the mind of the actual Thor and struck Bill Foster with lethal force, killing him.

9/10 Xavier And Moira Sent A Secret Team To Krakoa To Save The Original X-Men

The story of the All-New, All Different X-Men became legendary. After losing the first X-Men team to the vampiric mutant island Krakoa, Xavier recruited a new team to save his old students. What people didn’t know for years was that this was the second team Xavier had recruited. When Cyclops came back to warn Xavier about Krakoa, the two first went to Moira MacTaggert for help.

Moira was training young mutants Darwin, Petra, Sway, and Vulcan, who no one knew was Cyclops’s brother. Cyclops led this team to Krakoa, but the island seemingly killed the four of them. Xavier erased Cyclops’ memory of this mission, then sent him to try again with the team fans recognized. Having survived by merging with Darwin, Vulcan returned years later, attacking the X-Men to get his revenge for being left behind.

8/10 Moira MacTaggert Revealed Her Secret Mutation To Xavier Years Before He Formed The X-Men

Moira MacTaggert had a huge secret herself, one she revealed to Charles Xavier the first time they met at Oxford. Moira was a mutant with a unique power: every time she died, she reincarnated as herself with all the knowledge of her past lives. In her nine previous lives the same thing had always happened: humans had destroyed mutantkind.

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Moira and Xavier let Magneto in on their new secret and together, the three of them worked in the shadows to create a nation for mutants. Using Krakoa as a base, the three turned the living island into a powerful nation, one where Moira’s very existence was a secret. However, she had her own purpose on Krakoa, as she was working to recreate a mutant cure she had made many lives ago.

7/10 The United States Government First Tested Super Soldier Serum On Black Men

Steve Rogers is the father of the only Captain America, and he wasn’t even the first to receive the super soldier serum. The US government didn’t even use Rogers as a guinea pig. Instead, they tested the super soldier serum on multiple black men. Introduced to casual fans The Falcon and the Winter SoldierIsaiah Bradley was the most successful and was sent on many secret missions during WWII.

The government kept this secret for decades, and Bradley never revealed the truth about his WWII service to anyone. Eventually, the sordid experiment was exposed, changing the way everyone perceived the super soldier project.

6/10 Namor Was A Mutant All Along

Namor is the most powerful aquatic hero in the Marvel Universe and first made himself known to the surface world in 1939. Namor was an enemy of humanity during this time, constantly fighting the Human Torch and trying to destroy New York City. Once WWII started, he joined the fight against the Nazis, and he acted as both a hero and villain in the ensuing decades.

For years, everyone thought Namor’s powers came from his half-human/half-Atlantean heritage, but this was only half correct. Namor’s parentage caused him to become a mutant, which then granted him his powers and made him one of the oldest mutants on the planet.

5/10 Wolverine’s Life Is Full Of Secrets

Wolverine’s backstory has been like an onion, with layers unfolding as the years went by. While some factors didn’t make sense, it led to some surprising revelations. Wolverine was once James Howlett, born to a wealthy 19th century Canadian family. His family was attacked by the groundskeeper the night his powers manifested and James killed the attacker.

From there, James’ travels took him to the Canadian outback, ending when he accidentally killed his friend Rose and went feral. Regaining his humanity, he’d eventually become a soldier, join up with Weapon X, and become a superhero. While he had a century’s worth of forgotten memories, the experiences still shaped him.

4/10 Apocalypse’s Darwinist Beliefs Were Benevolent

Apocalypse is a more misunderstood villain than most people ever realised. Millennia ago, Apocalypse and his wife Genesis were leaders on the mutant island of Okkara. However, the demons of Amenth attacked the ancient mutant nation. The fighting was fierce, but Genesis and her children figured out a way to stem the tide.

Okkara was broken, with its armies embarking to battle the Amenthi on their home turf in Otherworld. Apocalypse was left behind to create a powerful army to battle the demons upon their return, which fueled his survival of the fittest beliefs.

3/10 The Inhumans Hid Themselves From Humanity For Millennia

The Inhumans’ lore stretches far back into Earth’s history. The Kree came to Earth in the distant path and experimented on humans, making them susceptible to mutation by the Terrigen Mists, a mutagenic catalyst produced by crystals the Kree left behind. The resulting Inhumans built a civilization, one they eventually moved far away from the humans.

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Inhuman society and technology flourished for millennia, protected from humanity. After the dawning of the modern superhero age, the Inhumans came out of their hidden city of Attilan, making themselves known and opening relations with a world they left behind.

2/10 Celestials Created Sentient Life Across The Universe

The origins of sentient life across the universe was a mystery that took countless years to solve. However, it would all be revealed when the Eternals began revealing themselves to humanity. That the Celestials had created Eternals to guard the life they seeded on the planet Earth, something the alien titans had done throughout the universe.

The Celestials were among the most powerful beings in the cosmos, as well as some of the oldest. For millions of years, they traveled the universe and seeded life on planets all over. While not all life was created by them, they played a huge role in its creation.

1/10 Galactus Existed Before The Current Iteration Of The Universe

Galactus has destroyed more lives than any other being in the Marvel Universe. The World Devourer was once Galan of Taa, among the last inhabitants of the last universe. Bathed in the primal energies of destruction and creation, he became Galactus.

Gifted with the Power Cosmic, Galactus’ existence would be devoted to the cosmic balance, devouring worlds for billions of years. The secret of Galactus’ origin wasn’t known to many beings in the Marvel Universe, a secret kept for eons beyond count. The being who was once a simple scientist became something he could never have imagined.

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