After 40 years, Marvel is finally reprinting Rom: Space Knight

Originally published at: After 40 years, Marvel is finally reprinting Rom: Space Knight | Boing Boing


I have a full set from the original run. Great story


I always associate Bill Sienkiewicz with ROM, since he was a recurring cover artist for so many years. His art was always so awe inspiring, like a really good movie poster for a really bad movie.

I made a gallery of his ROM comic book covers on my blog Bill Sienkiewicz's "ROM" Art - Doc Pop's Blog


I remember reading some comics with dire wraiths in the 80s, and being surprised and creeped out by them. IIRC, they were able to disguise themselves as anyone, and thought nothing of killing.

Of course, that was just before the grim darkness of grim, dark comics made that kind of thing commonplace.


Sort of like cousins to the Skrulls.

I wonder if Marvel will ever be able to revisit the Shogun Warriors as part of their universe? I don’t remember it well, but I recall a Fantastic Four crossover.


You and me both.
Incidentally, when Wolverine scratched ROM, it hurt but he couldn’t cut through. It took a loooong time before they assigned a name to the metal involved, which was (drum roll) plandanium. But maybe this just means that Wolverine isn’t that strong or his claws aren’t that sharp. Diamond’s harder than brick but I’d have trouble cutting through a brick wall with one.

The Canon apparently is that the Celestials experimented on Skrullos, as they did on other planets including Earth. And on Skrullos as on Earth, their experiments led to mainline, Eternal, and Deviant strains. Unlike on Earth, though, the Deviant strain Skrulls exterminated the mainline and Eternal strains, which is why they can shapeshift.

And some Skrulls went further by studying dark magic (because if magic exists, why should only one species in all the universe be able to use it?). Those Skrulls became the Dire Wraiths.

So by this backstory, the Dire Wraiths aren’t cousins to the Skrulls, they are Skrulls. Just a particular population of them.


It was revealed that the Dire Wraiths were an offshoot of the Skrulls, that were exiled for experimenting with magic. I have a complete run of Shogun Warriors to, as well as The Micronauts. They all started at about the same time


I’ve linked it before, but in this episode of the X-Plain the X-Men podcast, the guest host repeats a few times that ROM was “…surprisingly dark for a toy tie-in…” while going over two issues with the X-Men in them. Those issues of ROM were published around when X-Men was re-titled to Uncanny X-men in 1981 and they were introducing Marvel’s first dark future alternate timeline.

The 2018 Doctor Strange comics were built on that premise. I remember Kanna’s approach to magic as being pretty fun.

The planet Galador was destroyed in the Infinity storyline during the Jonathan Hickman Avengers run

It was especially dark around issue #50, when pretty much the entire town where he first came to Earth was slaughtered by the Dire Wraiths and the Skrulls

That’s the sort of thing I was expecting to be part of Secret Wars II, but nope. Also, I see from a synopsis that involves the Torpedo/Turbo armor. I can’t remember if I first saw it in New Warriors or Runaways/The Loners, but either way it was just one of those weird Marvel things without access to wikis. Wouldn’t have guessed the Dire Wraiths were involved. Arm- and leg-mounted jet engines? Sure, why not.

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The armor was first introduced in Rom, but later showed up in the New Warriors. I think a descendant of the original user showed up to claim the Torpedo armor, but turned out to be a Dire Wraith.

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