Civil War #1 arrived in May 2006, and the Marvel Comics Event in Seven Parts took over the entire line for close to an entire year and was arguably Marvel’s biggest and most successful event to date. There had been events before, such as Infinity Gauntlet, Acts of Vengeance, and House of M, and line-specific events had been a staple of the X-Men since the mid-80s, but Civil War was a new level of huge.

Peter Parker’s decision to unmask was national news, and now any time a hero is killed, or resurrected, or gets a new costume, it goes straight to USA Today. Civil War is just as culturally relevant in 2016 as it was ten years ago, with Captain America: Civil War arriving in theatres in a couple of months, and Civil War II by Brian Michael Bendis and David Marquez due in May from Marvel.

It still feels like it was just yesterday that Marvel asked us “Whose Side Are You On?”, rather than a whole decade, and Marvel has stuck hard to its event formula in those ten years. Now we have event comics twice a year, and each time we’re told everything will change forever. Let’s look back at the past ten years of Marvel Comics events.

  • Civil War (2006 - 2007)

    Mark Millar, Steve McNiven, Dexter Vines & Morry Hollowell

    What Happened: Following the deaths of over 600 civilians due to a superhero v supervillain fight in Stamford, Connecticut, the US government passes the Superhuman Registration Act, and heroes choose sides behind Iron Man (pro-reg) and Captain America (anti-reg).

    The Fallout: Captain America surrendered after seeing the destruction the Civil War was causing, and was later shot on courthouse steps. Some decided it was a good idea to make Iron Man director of S.H.I.E.L.D., but this era of his comic is a real hidden gem. The Fifty State Initiative was introduced, providing a superhero team in every state. Spider-Man’s decision to unmask eventually led him to make a deal with Mephisto to save his Aunt May in exchange for his marriage with Mary-Jane.

    Who Died: Night Thrasher, Namorita, Microbe, Goliath

    Who Returned: Captain Marvel (Mar-Vell)

  • Annihilation (2006 - 2007)

    Keith Giffen, Andrea Di Vito & Laura Villari

    What Happened: Annihilus invades the positive matter universe backed by the “Annihilation Wave”, a swarm of bug-like aliens from the Negative Zone. A ragtag group of space-faring heroes, including Nova, Super-Skrull, Ronan and the Silver Surfer, work to prevent the destruction of the universe while the Earth-bound heroes bicker about federal policy.

    The Fallout: Nova became really cool, ripped Annihilus inside out and got an ongoing series. Drax finally killed Thanos and completed his life’s task. Ronan became Kree emperor and ceded territory to the Annihilation Wave under the command of Ravenous, Annihilus’ herald. Annihilus is reborn as a baby.

    Who Died: Annihilus, Quasar, Thanos, Air-Walker, The Fallen One

    Who Returned: Annihilus

  • World War Hulk (2007)

    Greg Pak, John Romita Jr, Klaus Janson & Christina Strain

    What Happened: The Hulk returns to Earth seeking revenge on The Illuminati (Iron Man, Mr. Fantastic, Black Bolt and Doctor Strange) for sending him to a war-torn planet and then blowing it up once he found peace there.

    The Fallout: The Hulk is depowered, leading to the creation of the Red Hulk. Hercules and Amadeus Cho becomes Marvel’s ultimate buddy-duo.

    Who Died: No-one

    Who Returned: No-one

  • Annihilation Conquest (2007 - 2008)

    Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, Tom Raney, Scott Hanna & Frank D’Armata

    What Happened: The Phalanx, led by Ultron, take advantage of the ruins caused by Annihilation and attempt to take over Kree Space with the techno-organic virus. Star-Lord leads a team of criminals to stop them, while Quasar and Moondragon discover the resurrected Adam Warlock, and Nova battles a techno-organic infection.

    The Fallout: The assembled heroes who stood together to defeat Ultron stick together to form the Guardians of the Galaxy, despite that name already being used 3000 years in the future.

    Who Died: Moondragon, Deathcry, Korath, Captain Universe, Praxagora

    Who Returned: Adam Warlock

  • Secret Invasion (2008 - 2009)

    Brian Michael Bendis, Leinil Yu, Mark Morales & Laura Martin

    What Happened: Earth is invaded by Skrulls, many of whom had been here all along posing as heroes and villains such as Elektra, Yellowjacket, and Jarvis.

    The Fallout: During the final battle, Norman Osborn shoots the Skrull Queen in the face, winning the war, and someone decides it's a good idea to make him Director of S.H.I.E.LD., only he replaces it with his own organization HAMMER, and starts a team of Dark Avengers featuring villains posing as iconic heroes.

    Who Died: The Wasp, Captain Marvel (Mar-Vell)

    Who Returned: Mockingbird

  • War of Kings (2009)

    Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, Paul Pelletier, Rick Magyar & Wil Quintana

    What Happened: The Inhumans take over ruling The Kree as the Shi’Ar (led by Cyclops’ brother Vulcan) increase their own empire. When an Inhuman/Skrull conflict crosses into Shi’Ar space, it sparks a war that encompasses the entire galaxy and beyond.

    The Fallout: Gladiator becomes the Majestor of the Shi’Ar, Crystal is married to Ronan of The Kree, and Medusa takes over leading the Inhumans. Black Bolt does what we’re all thinking about and kills Vulcan, but dies himself. The final fight between Vulcan and Black Bolt rips open a hole in the universe, bringing Cthulhu-worshipping Avengers into the 616.

    Who Died: Smasher, Hobgoblin, Nightside and the replacement Smasher of The Imperial Guard. Lilandra, Black Bolt, Vulcan.

    Who Returned: No-one

  • Shadowland (2010)

    Andy Diggle, Billy Tan, Batt & Christina Strain

    What Happened: As the leader of The Hand, Daredevil creates a fortress in the middle of Hell’s Kitchen, and begins doling out ninja justice on criminals and the heroes who come to talk him down.

    The Fallout: Matt Murdock is freed from demonic possession at the hands of The Beast, an ancient demon worshipped by an off-shoot of The Hand. He disappears to a small town for a brief while before returning with a new happy, smiley outlook on life and better art.

    Who Died: Bullseye

    Who Returned: No-one

  • Siege (2010)

    Brian Michael Bendis, Olivier Coipel, Mark Morales & Laura Martin

    What Happened: Tired of Asgard’s presence on (or above) American soil, Norman Osborn stages a disaster to blame on Volstagg, to justify a siege of Asgard. The Sentry rips Ares apart like a scene from Invincible.

    The Fallout: Norman Osborn is deposed and arrested, and Steve Rogers takes the job as Marvel’s top cop, ushering in the “Heroic Age”

    Who Died: Ares, The Sentry, Loki

    Who Returned: No-one

  • Chaos War (2010 - 2011)

    Greg Pak, Fred Van Lente, Khoi Pham, Tom Palmer & Sunny Gho

    What Happened: Amatsu-Mikaboshi, the Japanese God of Evil, becomes the Chaos King and starts unravelling reality, and the only people who can stop him are The God Squad, led by the recently resurrected Hercules, the new Skyfather of Olympus. Pluto opens the gates of Hell to try and combat Chaos King, briefly reviving a host of dead heroes and villains.

    The Fallout: The Chaos King is trapped inside an artificial reality, and Hercules gives up all of his power to return the world how it should be, with some of the resurrected heroes remaining in the land of the living. For the second time in four years, an Alpha Flight series spinning out of an event is demoted from ongoing to miniseries.

    Who Died: Athena

    Who Returned: Alpha Flight (Shaman, Guardian, Vindicator & Puck)

  • Fear Itself (2011)

    Matt Fraction, Stuart Immonen & Laura Martin

    What Happened: Sin, daughter of the Red Skull, frees The Serpent, Asgardian God of Fear, who seeks to destroy Earth and replace Asgard with his own dark inversion. He summons seven hammers, which seek out those deemed “Worthy,” transforming heroes and villains into uber-powerful versions of themselves.

    The Fallout: Bucky is seemingly killed by Sin, Steve Rogers returns to the role of Captain America and Thor dies in the battle with The Serpent. The Defenders are reformed to track down Nul, the entity that possessed The Hulk. Somehow this also leads to the world discovering Nick Fury has a son that looks like Samuel L. Jackson does in the Avengers movies.

    Who Died: Thor

    Who Returned: No-one

  • Avengers vs X-Men (2012)

    Brian Michael Bendis, Jason Aaron, Ed Brubaker, Jonathan Hickman, Matt Fraction, John Romita Jr, Olivier Coipel, Adam Kubert, Scott Hanna, Mark Morales, John Dell, Laura Martin and Larry Molina

    What Happened: The Phoenix Force returns to Earth and all signs point towards it inhabiting Hope Summers. The Avengers and The X-Men have different opinions on what to do with this information, and go to war over the young mutant. When the Phoenix Force shows up, it splits and inhabits Colossus, Emma Frost, Namor, Magik and Cyclops, who use it to change the world.

    The Fallout: Namor floods Wakanda, killing thousands and sparking a war with Atlantis. Hope Summers and Scarlet Witch work together to bring back humanity’s potential to produce new mutants. After killing his mentor, Cyclops goes on the run and forms his own freedom-fighting X-Men based out of the Weapon X facility. Marvel learns its lesson from trying to have five writers on one event.

    Who Died: Professor Charles Xavier, Captain Marvel (Mar-Vell)

    Who Returned: Captain Marvel (Mar-Vell)

  • Age of Ultron (2013)

    Brian Michael Bendis, Bryan Hitch, Brandon Peterson, Carlos Pacheco, Paul Neary, Paul Mounts, Roger Martinez & Jose Villarrubia

    What Happened: In a world where Ultron has already won, The Avengers try to turn back time and prevent the robotic apocalypse. In doing so, Wolverine accidentally creates a world where magic is at war with science.

    The Fallout: Multiple, repeated timeline alterations dating back to to Fantastic Four #2 cause time to fissure, and people slip through cracks in their own universes into others. Most notably, 616-Galactus arrives in the Ultimate Universe, and Angela arrives in the Marvel Universe. Dozens of grandmothers buy this for their grandchildren based on the title.

    Who Died: The Owl, Hammerhead, Black Panther, Luke Cage, She-Hulk, Captain America, Goliath, Invisible Woman, Wolverine

    Who Returned: All of the above

  • Infinity (2013 - 2014)

    Jonathan Hickman, Jim Cheung, Jerome Opeña, Dustin Weaver, Mark Morales, John Livesay, David Meikis, Guillermo Ortego, Justin Ponsor & Ive Svorcina

    What Happened: The Avengers leave Earth to join a Galactic Resistance against The Builders, an ancient race of aliens responsible for life throughout the universe. While The Avengers are away, Thanos invades Earth looking for his Inhuman son. The Infinity Gems play a shocking small roll, considering the title and Thanos' involvement.

    The Fallout: Thanos’ fight with Black Bolt sends the Inhuman King into hiding as Attilan crashes into the Hudson River. Super Skrull becomes the king of a new Skrull Empire, and The Annihilation Wave is ceded a planet of its own. Thanos is defeated by his son and is encased in amber in a state of “living death”

    Who Died: No-one

    Who Returned: No-one

  • Original Sin (2014)

    Jason Aaron, Mike Deodato & Frank Martin

    What Happened: After The Watcher is killed and the assailant steals his eyes, one of them winds up in the possession of The Orb, who detonates it like a bomb, revealing long hidden secrets among the heroes. Nick Fury Sr puts together several teams to discover who the mastermind is.

    The Fallout: Nick Fury Sr is revealed to be the perpetrator, and after fusing with The Watcher’s remaining eye, takes over his role as “The Unseen” on the Blue Area of the Moon. The Winter Soldier takes Fury’s place as “The Man on The Wall”, an agent responsible for stopping extranormal events from ever reaching Earth. The Orb still doesn’t become the A-List villain that we all want him to become.

    Who Died: Uatu The Watcher, Timothy Aloysius Cadwallader "Dum-Dum" Dugan

    Who Returned: No-one

  • Avengers & X-Men: AXIS (2014 - 2015)

    Rick Remender, Adam Kubert, Leinil Yu, Terry Dodson, Gerry Alanguilan, Jason Paz, Mark Roslan, Rachel Dodson, Laura Martin, Matt Milla, Edgar Delgado, Jesus Aburtov & Paul Mounts

    What Happened: In an attempt to defeat a hybrid Red Skull/Onslaught, Doctor Doom and Scarlet Witch accidentally turn all the heroes into villains and vice-versa.

    The Fallout: Iron Man, Havok and Sabretooth remain inverted following the event. Doctor Doom returns Cassie Lang to life. Spider-Man builds a statue to Carnage in Avengers Mansion’s memorial garden. People briefly remembered that AXIS was coming out.

    Who Died: Carnage

    Who Returned: Doctor Voodoo, Stature

  • Secret Wars (2015 - 2016)

    Jonathan Hickman, Edad Ribic & Ive Svorcina

    What Happened: The last two Earths in the Multiverse crash into each other, but reality is rescued by Doctor Doom wielding the power of The Beyonders. He uses it to created Battleworld, a patchwork planet made up from salvaged territories from destroyed universes.

    The Fallout: Mr. Fantastic, Black Panther and Namor led a rebellion against God Doom and created a new “Prime Earth” that mostly resembles Earth-616, with some changes. The Future Foundation are now recreating the multiverse with Molecule Man, and Doctor Doom is handsome again. Totally a reboot, despite what Tom Brevoort says.

    Who Died: Everyone and everything

    Who Returned: Everyone and everything


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