Today, the Marvel Universe sees the publication of SWORD #6, following on from last week's Planet-Size X-Men, and is another of what the X-Men line calls a "red book" – a title you pretty much have to read if you are following the Krakoan storyline more widely. Previous examples in recent weeks were Marauders #20 and Planet-Size X-Men. That last issue saw the mutants of Krakoa and Arakko terraform Mars overnight into a new planet Arakko for the Arakkii mutants and established as the capital planet of the solar system, including intergalactic diplomatic procedures and institutions. A massive change for the Marvel Universe and one that it feels has to be reflected across the board.
However, just as with the independent nation status of Krakoa on Earth, saying it is so doesn't make so. And the X-Men know they need to bribe everyone to play along. Krakoa offered free drugs that treated dementia, lifespan, and antibiotic resistance. Arakko offers money, creating a brand new currency from a brand new material, joining the likes of adamantium and unobtanium as metals with rather redolent names. And, with gathered intergalactic representatives, they introduce mysterium.
A new metal for the Marvel Universe that is manufactured by mutants in mysterious manners. Probably by Magneto.
So what can it do? Turns out pretty much everything.
Moldable, indestructible, conducts electricity but not heat or radiation. Perfect for creating armour, vehicles, shelter, weapons, use in circuitry, and more.
It's a new form of currency for a ghalaxy that has seen its economy collapse in the wake of the end of the Skrull/Kree War, that formed the back of the Empyre and Guardian Of The Galaxy storylines. The universe is broke, Krakoa and Arakko provide a new currency based on a new desirable and rare metal, and fund respective intergalactic economies. Basically an Alexander Hamilton for the universe. With Arakko not only as the capital of the Marvel Universe solar system but de facto the financial capital for the galaxy. And more besides.
Arakko seizing intergalactic representation from Marvel Universe Earth, making it a suburb of what was once known as Mars. Those are the big two changes, but good things come in threes, right? And Doctor Doom, monarch of Latveria on Earth has his own question.
And gets an answer.
One that Bleeding Cool predicted last week as well.
Ororo Monroe, Storm, regent and terraformer of Mars – or Arakko, and the representative voice of the entire solar system. And the word gets around the Marvel Universe, even to today's Guardians Of The Galaxy, handily also written by Al Ewing.
A new queen, a new currency, a new centre of power, Planet-Size X-Men and SWORD have made a big new change. How is the rest of the Marvel Universe going to be able to ignore this? Oh and this is only part one too…
UPDATE: The new solicitation for SWORD in the September 2021 solicitations follows up on Queen Storm as well…
SWORD #6 GALA
(W) Al Ewing (A/CA) Valerio Schiti
THIS IS WHAT COMES NEXT. On Earth, the HELLFIRE GALA is in full swing. But on S.W.O.R.D. Station One, a very different guest list comes together…as Abigail Brand finally unveils her plans for Mysterium – and the future of human and mutantkind. 32 PGS./Rated T+In Shops: Jun 23, 2021 SRP: $3.99
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #15
(W) Al Ewing (A) Juan Frigeri (CA) Brett Booth
GUARDIANS VS. S.W.O.R.D.! In the wake of the Snarkwar and reeling from revelations of their own, the Guardians come face-to-face with the S.W.O.R.D. station crew…including their Quiet Council liaison-Magneto! And he's not known for friendly chats… It's the Human Rocket versus the Master of Magnetism-and it's winner take all! 32 PGS./Rated T+In Shops: Jun 23, 2021 SRP: $3.99