A major X-Men villain is being set up as Marvel’s Dr. Stone after using his powers to bring back technology and electricity in Dark Ages #2.
WARNING: This article contains major spoilers for Dark Ages #2, now available from Marvel.
Marvel’s Dark Ages literally sent the Earth back to the Dark Ages after a last-minute attempt to save the world from the Unmaker’s destructive wrath turned off all the electricity permanently. In the aftermath, the heroes and villains of the world created a new world from the old, but Apocalypse is the only person who was able to bring back electricity and in one fell swoop became Marvel’s version of Dr. Stone.
Dark Ages #2 by Tom Taylor, Iban Coello, Brian Reber, and VC’s Joe Sabino set up the Marvel Universe’s version of Dr. Stone with one gigantic twist that will have damning ramifications for the new world built by the heroes after the electricity left permanently. After the lights went out, heroes used their powers in creative ways to make up for their lack of electricity. As giant supercities came into being, telepaths used their powers to link these cities so they could share what resources and knowledge they had. On the outskirts of one of these cities, Spider-Man established an intricate system of webs that would let Daredevil know if anybody was trying to enter the city. Meanwhile Europe, Apocalypse used his powers and other villains’ powers to effectively bring back electricity. He enslaved Magneto with a machine that used his magnetic powers to generate electricity while he used other brainwashed heroes to build and expand the machine that generated electricity.
While Dark Ages’ new society built itself back up by using superpowers to replace what they lost, the world of Dr. Stone used the amazing powers of science to rebuild the world from nothing after mysterious flash-petrification turned most people into stone. Senku Ishigami, who was already a very knowledgeable scientist before being petrified, was one of the first people to be revived. When his childhood friend Taiju Oki was revived, they were able to figure out that a chain reaction caused by nitric acid de-petrified them. Using this revelation, they were able to develop a Revival Fluid and set themselves the mission to revive everyone they could before bring back all of the technology they lost. Since they re-discovered nitric acid, their first invention, Senku and his allies keep a meticulous diary of every invention they have recreated in hopes of bringing the world back to the modern age.
The revival of old technology isn’t the only thing Dark Ages and Dr. Stone have in common though. Both Apocalypse and Senku are trying to create new empires based on the technology they managed to re-create. In Apocalypse’s case, he has already taken over Western Europe and is planning on using his newfound access to electricity to awaken the dormant Unmaker to take his powers for himself. Senku, meanwhile, used his newly created inventions to establish the Kingdom of Science to bring science and technology back into the world.
While Apocalypse is evil and Senku is steadily on the side of good, they both have other nations opposing them. Apocalypse spread into the rest of the world is going to be matched up against the new world created by the heroes while Senku’s Kingdom of Science faces off against Tsuakasa Shishio’s Tsukasa Empire and later Ibara’s Petrification Kingdom.
One key distinction separates the two. Senku uses his science and inventions to create new things to help the people around him live better lives. One of his first inventions, the Revival Fluid is also one of his most important because it allowed him to bring people back from their petrification. On the other hand, Apocalypse uses his discovery of electricity to decimate and destroy everything around him. Regardless, Apocalypse’s reinventing of electricity makes him the one being who could bring it back for the rest of the world.
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