The Defenders Return to Marvel Comics This Summer – Along with the Beyonder

The Defenders return in a new series from June – although details are scarce, thanks to the typically mysterious nature of Marvel’s announcement of the return of the so-called ‘non-team’ led by Doctor Strange.

The Defenders recently starred in a limited series courtesy of writer Al Ewing and artist Javier Rodriguez, with the last page of the latest issue, Defenders #5 from January 19, promising “The Defenders will return” – which means we now at least know when that return is coming.

As well as merely teasing the arrival of an “unexpected enemy” for the Defenders “from beyond,” the cryptic teaser includes artwork by Ron Lim showing the Beyonder in his original Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars armor, with a dome bearing an Omega symbol on its head.

(Image credit: Marvel Comics)

An animated GIF version of the art included in Marvel’s announcement transforms this version of the Beyonder into a more recognizable version, removing the dome from his face and showing a version of the omniscient villain as he appeared in his human form in Secret Wars II (80s Jheri curl and all). You can see the art of transformation here.

As for the Omega symbol on the helmeted version of the art, it could symbolize different things. In Marvel lore, there is no direct connection between the symbol and the Beyonder (unlike DC where Darkseid is directly associated with the ‘Omega Force’). But a semi-obscure Marvel Comics hero called Omega the Unknown has recently returned to the pages of Darkhold: Omega one shot.

Although Omega the Unknown and the Beyonder are not directly related, Omega has a long history with the Defenders. Perhaps plot elements from the recently completed Defenders limited series and the Darkhold event will come together for June’s new Defenders story.

Either way, Marvel is promising more information on the new Defenders title coming March 10th – so keep your eyes peeled here as the story unravels.

The return of the Defenders in June puts the title on the heels of the new launches of Savage Avengers and Thunderbolts in May. Stay tuned to Newsarama for Marvel’s full June 2022 solicitations coming later this month.

The Defenders’ bizarre history leaves them just short of making Newsarama’s list of best superhero teams all time.

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