Nova (Marvel)(01 - Richard Rider)
Real Name: Richard Rider
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Flight, enhanced strength, speed, and durability.
Nova derives his powers from an energy source called the Nova-Force, which all Nova Centurions wield. Richard Rider had the greatest potential for control as his knowledge of his power increased .
Nova wears a standard Xandarian StarCorps uniform, designed to accommodate his powers without being damaged by them. In addition, the uniform has a life support function that can sustain Rider under the most extreme environmental conditions. It can act as a space suit by locking off the mouth and eyes of the helmet. The helmet can also pick up radio transmissions, as well as act as a heads-up display for tracking energy signatures.
Chosen at random by the dying Xandarian Rhomann Dey to receive his Nova Corps powers, teenager Richard Rider found himself thrust into the role of superhero, a role he grasped with relish. He battled foes such as Dey's nemesis Zorr, the winged mutant criminal Condor, the amnesiac Powerhouse (actually a Xandarian sent to locate the missing Dey), and the mysterious Sphinx. The latter eventually kidnapped Nova and several others, using Dey's spaceship to transport them all to Xandar.
Learning that Xandar was threatened by the Skrull Empire, Nova and his fellows (bar the Sphinx, who had returned to Earth, and Dr. Sun, who teleported to an unknown location) pledged their aid; the Skrulls were eventually driven off with the help of the Galadorian spaceknight Rom. Homesick for Earth, Richard agreed to give up his powers, which were needed to help rebuild war-ravaged Xandar's defenses, and returned home a normal human once more.
Or so it seemed. Months later Richard was tracked down by Night Thrasher, who believed Richard's powers were merely dormant and wished to recruit Nova for his prospective hero team. To test the theory, Night Thrasher dropped Richard off a roof; luckily for both of them, Night Thrasher was correct, and the adrenaline rush re-awoke Richard's abilities. Alongside several other teenage heroes he founded the New Warriors, and also resumed his solo career. He fought alongside the New Warriors for years, including encounters with Nova's old foe the Sphinx and a brief stint during which the Warriors worked with Cable and X-Force. He was eventually hunted down by Super-Nova, the Xandarian who held the rest of the Nova-Force inside his body and had been driven mad by it. The two of them, aided by the New Warriors and Galactus' Xandarian heralds Firelord and Air-Walker, ended up setting off protocols that led to Xandar's resurrection. The StarCorps was reinstated, and Rider was appointed Centurion Prime and assigned to guard earth's sector of space.
Returning to Earth, Rider was confronted with dual lives as Centurion Prime and a member of the New Warriors. He also encountered another Nova from an alternate timeline named Nova 0:0. Nova 0:0 attacked Rider to prepare him for defending his Earth from the force that had destroyed Nova 0:0's Earth, the Deathstorm. After stopping the Deathstorm and saving Earth, Rider was replaced as Centurion Prime for Earth's sector of space by Garthan Saal, the former Super-Nova, after failing to follow orders at a crucial time.
When Saal sacrificed himself to save earth from the Dire Wraith queen Volx, he passed his powers back to Rider. He continued to fight alongside the New Warriors until the team broke up, reformed, and broke up again. He agreed to come back as part of the New Warriors reality TV show, and traveled the U.S. with the team, fighting menaces that'd taken up residence in communities that didn't have resident heroes. The team fought several criminals who'd escaped the Raft during the massive prison break that led to the reestablishing of the Avengers, before being recalled to Xandar alongside the rest of the Nova Corps to deal with the threat of the Annihilation Wave. Rider was the only StarCorps member to survive the Wave's surprise attack, and has become the bearer of the entire Nova-Force, as well as the Xandarian Worldmind, the living computers that contain the entire record of Xandarian civilization as well as the minds of all its deceased members.
Nova then came into contact with Drax who taught him how to better control the Nova Force and how to kill. Realizing his new leadership abilities, Nova created the United Front, an army opposed to Annihilus. Several beings joined the United Front alongside Nova including Silver Surfer, Ronan, Gamora, Phyla-Vell, Moondragon, the Spaceknights, Blastaar, Stardust, Firelord, Red Shift, Super-Skrull, Star-Lord, and others. Alongside these beings Nova was able to squash Annihilus's forces and kill Annihilus.
After the war, Richard started to scan the galaxy, searching for beings who needed help. Continuing this for an undetermined amount of time he became fatigued and homesick. The Worldmind advised Richard to return to Earth to rest. Taking Worldmind's advice Richard returned to Earth to find the state of the world after the Civil War. While back home Richard was approached by Iron Man, who strongly urged Richard to register. Stark then sent Justice to try and convince him to register. Failing to see the point to any of the madness Richard left Earth and returned to his Nova duties.
Recently the Phalanx took control of Kree Space and infected many worlds. Finding himself trapped inside Kree Space, Nova crashed into an energy barrier and landed on a Kree outpost severely damaged. There the commander, Ko-Rel took him in and tried to oppose a horde of Phalanx and an infected Gamora. Richard being too weak to fight back, the Worldmind uploaded some of the Nova Force into Ko-Rel turing her into a Nova Corps member. Gamora then slipped past the Kree defenses and infected Richard with the techno-organic virus, turning him into a Phalanx Select. From there Gamora and Rider left the outpost and returned to Hala.
Seemingly accepting the transmode virus, Richard alongside Gamora then hunted down and infected Drax with the techno-organic virus. Returning to Hala, Richard was attacked by Ko-Rel who was led by the Worldmind. However, Ko-Rel was not powerful enough to defeat Richard and died at his hands. After returning from the battle, Richard was then taken inside his mind by Worldmind and showed Richard that he was indeed fighting the techno-organic virus. Now boosted with hope and the help of Ko-Rel's returned power, Richard managed to break free of the Phalanx control and escaped from Hala. Richard then created a wormhole and was followed by Drax and Gamora. Once going through the wormhole they were all transported into unknown space.
Nova soon found himself at the edge of the universe in a place called Knowhere. Unfortunately, even here there would be no peace for the last of the Nova Centurions as he was attacked by zombies under the control of an unknown evil called Abyss. However, after making an ally in a talking dog named Cosmo, Nova was able to defeat the villain and restore peace to Knowhere. Learning that Nova was transmode positive, Cosmo used the resources at his disposal to chart Nova a course for the birthplace of the Phalanx, Kvch, in hopes that Nova can find a way to cure himself of the virus that is slowly killing him.
First Appearance: Nova (1976) #1
Quasar (Marvel)(04 - Richard Rider)
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#11 All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2006)
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- 'Hard Choices, Part Three: Following the Line along the Middle'#10
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- 'The Sushi People'#16
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- 'Sympathy For the Devil'#20
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#11 The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Master Edition (1990)
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