WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for 2099 Alpha #1 by Nick Spencer, Viktor Bogdanovic, Marte Gracia and Joe Caramagna, on sale Wednesday, Nov. 20.
The next Marvel Comics crossover event series begins next week with the release of 2099 Alpha #1. Seeds for the story arc were set up by writer Nick Spencer in his Amazing Spider-Man run, when Spider-Man 2099 (Miguel O'Hara) crashed down from the sky in Amazing Spider-Man #25.
Unconscious and disoriented, Amazing Spider-Man #32-33 follows Spider-Man 2099 while he is in the clutches of the seedy Roxxon Corporation. Small flashbacks to the future show the Year 2099 in turmoil, which is what forces Miguel O'Hara to travel to the past in search of Peter Parker. The solicit for 2099 Alpha #1 teases a future in peril, as well as appearances by 2099 versions of familiar Marvel heroes and villains, along with some surprising returns.
As an example, a preview of 2099 Alpha #1 foreshadows the arrival of the Marvel's future God of Thunder. The Asgardian hammer Mjolnir gets the spotlight as a mystery character picks it up to deliver a beatdown to the Public Eye police taskforce.
This Asgardian-clad gentleman gets a couple of good shots in, but he also falls victim to a red laser shot that takes out one of his fellow soldiers. We're led to believe this person is the new Thor of 2099, but the real God of Thunder wouldn't let a simple laser blast defeat him. Obviously, there is more that meets the eye with Mjolnir and the real identity of the future's Thor Odinson.
Marvel released an uncolored preview of 2099 Alpha #1 in October, which featured a young child attempting to lift up Mjolnir. It gets as far as showing the child grasp the hammer's handle, leaving us to wonder if the attempt is successful. If we consider both previews, it appears Mjolnir is a hot commodity in this dying future.
However, whoever is picking up the God of Thunder mantle in 2099 may not be as friendly as the Thor readers are used to. The final page of Wednesday's preview reveals a possibly deceased person strung up by their arms. That image alone can be considered creepy, but Mjolnir is also tied around the person's neck, almost as a warning to whoever comes across it.
The mystery of 2099's Thor will be one of the many secrets heading into 2099 Alpha #1. Characters such as Punisher, Conan the Barbarian, Ghost Rider, the Fantastic Four and Venom will be featured in one-shots expanding on the main story, with the Alpha and Omega issues acting as bookends to the event. Issues of Amazing Spider-Man written by Nick Spencer will also tie-in as well.
We have to wait and see if Cecil MacAdam of the 2099 Church of Thor makes a surprise appearance.