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The Abandoned An’ Forsaked – So WHAT’S Star-Lord’s Origin Exactly?

by  in Comic News Comment

In this feature we examine comic book stories and ideas that were not only abandoned, but also had the stories/plots specifically “overturned” by a later writer (as if they were a legal precedent). Click here for an archive of all the previous editions of The Abandoned An’ Forsaked. Feel free to e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.

Today, based on a suggestion to me by myself in the most recent “When We First Met” (spotlighting the debut of the various members of the current Guardians of the Galaxy)

When Steves Englehart and Gan introduced Star-Lord in Marvel Preview #4 in 1975, Englehart gave Peter Quill an astrological birth (the planets were aligned for his birth, something Englehart suggests also happened with the birth of Christ…yes, he actually opens with the birth of Christ and then the birth of Peter Quill) and a clearly defined reason for wanting to grow up and seek interstellar justice…







And when he finally is turned into the Star-Lord by the Master of the Sun, he is given a special gun…



Two years later, in Marvel Preview #11, Chris Claremont, John Byrne and Terry Austin somehow felt that the aliens showing up on Earth to kill Peter’s mom had to have a reason for being there, so it is revealed that Peter is actually part alien, which he discovers when he meets Jason, Emperor of Spartax…





Marvel Preview #11 is a great and fun story with awesome Byrne/Austin art, but I never understood the purpose of this revelation.

So anyhow, that was pretty much it for Star-Lord besides a few stories here and there.

One of them, 1980’s Marvel Spotlight #6 by Doug Moench and Tom Sutton had a bizarre retcon that a few of you commenters pointed out. The revelation was that the Master of the Sun was actually ONE OF THE ALIENS WHO KILLED PETER QUILL’S MOM!!!




Besides a mini-series in the 1990s that Peter Quill was barely in, this was it for Star-Lord until he finally was established as being part of the Marvel Universe in the 2000s. Read on to the next page to see how Star-Lord made his way into being established as being part of the Marvel Universe while also gaining a new origin…

In 2000, Carlos Pacheco, Rafael Marin and Jorge Lucas first established Star-Lord as being part of the Marvel Universe when we see Jason of Spartax as part of the Inhumans mini-series. In the final issue, Jason is exiled and we see his future…



Now clearly, originally Englehart intended for Star-Lord’s adventures to be in the future (well, the future in 1975, at least) and that is the approach Pacheco takes, as well.

However, a couple of years after Inhumans #4, Keith Giffen brought Peter Quill into the Marvel Universe HIMSELF in the pages of Thanos. Giffen’s take essentially abandoned and forsaked Pacheco’s, as Quill not only is around in the present day Marvel Universe but he has been Star-Lord for some time by the time he showed up in Thanos (in prison for some actions he had taken as Star-Lord). Quill is freed from prison right in time to play a key role in Annihilation. When Star-Lord got his own mini-series during Annihilation Conquest (also written by Giffen, with amazing artwork by Tim Green II and Victor Olazaba), Giffen detailed Star-Lord’s Marvel Universe history for the first time…




As you can see, Giffen pretty much keeps Englehart’s origin for Star-Lord, just sets it in the past. Giffen also seems to, if not explicitly abandoning and forsaking it, implicitly abandoning the whole Spartax angle. Giffen’s Peter Quill (and Abnett and Lanning’s Peter Quill after Giffen left the Annihilation books) seems to be pretty squrely “just” an Earthling. The Kree, for instance, talk about him only as an Earthling.

This brings us to Guardians of the Galaxy #0.1 by Brian Michael Bendis, Steve McNiven and Dexter Vines. Besides a general de-aging of Star-Lord, Bendis essentially abandons and forsakes all of the previous origins and then consolidates Star-Lord’s origin. No more Master of the Sun giving Star-Lord a special gun. No more astrological birth. No more psycho father. No more mind-wiped mother. Just an alien prince crash landing on Earth and falling for an Earther…


Then he leaves Earth to go back to his inter-galactic war with her pregnant (hopefully without him knowing this).

Years later, some Badoon show up to eradicate the Spartax bloodline (I like how Bendis made the aliens Badoon)…



Young Peter manages to kill the Badoon assassins but is seemingly killed when his house explodes. He survives and inherits the special Spartax gun from his father and this drives him to become an interstellar cop…



Honestly, I like Bendis’ streamlined origin. Claremont and Byrne had already streamlined Englehart’s original trippier origin by the time that they took over Star-Lord (they didn’t retcon it, but they basically ignored it in favor of a more straightforward adventurer take on Star-Lord), so I think the further streamlined origin works well.

That’s it for this week! If you have a suggestion for a future Abandoned an’ Forsaked, drop me a line at bcronin@comicbookresources.com