Spider-Man Just Stepped Into One of Marvel’s Most Dangerous Worlds
Symbiote Spider-Man’s journey through the Crossroads looks like it is finally coming to an end in one of the most horrifying ways imaginable.
WARNING: The following contains major spoilers for Symbiote Spider-Man: Crossroads #4, available now from Marvel.
The Symbiote Spider-Man saga has brought readers back to one of the most iconic times in the wall-crawler’s life. While Peter Parker is still endowed with his symbiote suit, that fact has most recently fallen by the wayside in favor of focusing on an even more powerful artifact – the Matrix Stone. The hunt for the Matrix Stone began simply enough on Earth before sending Spider-Man spiraling through dinosaur-laden jungles and Deviant territory, and now it has left him in the most terrifying realm yet.
For all of the terrifying and thrilling action he has seen so far, nothing could prepare the hero for stepping into the home of the villainous Karnilla herself, and Nornheim might just be the tragic last stop on Spider-Man’s journey through the Crossroads in Symbiote Spider-Man: Crossroads #4, by Peter David, Greg Land, Jay Leisten, Frank D’Armata and VC’s Joe Sabino.
After escaping the dangers of a primordial jungle, Spider-Man has ended up deep within the stronghold of the Deviants alongside a demonic Guilt Hulk. The unwitting travelers soon realized the gravity of the situation when the Deviant Kro explains to them just what the Norn Stone truly is. As it turns out, the Matrix Stone currently embedded in the Hulk’s forehead is capable of controlling the other Norn Stones. With that revelation, Guilt Hulk almost immediately turns on everyone around him in the hopes of holding onto the Matrix Stone, although that attempt is dashed soon enough with the arrival of Karnilla herself.
Even though the Hulk is unconvinced of her power, Karnilla easily plucks the Matrix Stone from his forehead before taking her leave through another interdimensional portal. Of course, Spider-Man can’t let something so powerful fall into her clutches so easily, and he gives chase through the portal alongside a now Incredible Hulk and the Eternal Ikaris. Much like the rest of the journey so far, where they are headed is unknown to the heroes, but it is by far the worst location they could have possibly ventured into considering it is Karnilla’s own seat of power.
First introduced to the Marvel Universe back in 1964’s Journey into Mystery #107 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, Nornheim is the Asgardian home of Karnilla and the Norns, a trio of Asgardian Goddesses of Destiny. While Nornheim itself is geologically within the realm of Asgard, Karnilla has long considered her home its own sovereign state, something which has caused more than a few conflicts over the years. The fact that Nornheim has its own Asgardian populace apart from Karnilla’s demonic army has also been something of a sore spot for her. Now that Karnilla has returned home with the Matrix Stone in hand, she can finally expand her borders by challenging Odin for all of Asgard. Spider-Man, Ikaris and the Hulk might still be standing in her way, but the combination of her now vastly expanded powers on top of the home-field advantage doesn’t exactly leave them posing much of a threat to her plans.
Even if Karnilla commands Nornheim and her forces within it, she has still returned to Asgard with a trio of the most unstoppable heroes that the Marvel Universe has to offer. They aren’t Asgardian themselves, but each of them has made more than a few acquaintances who are, and there is no doubt that any of them would be happy to lend a hand in sending Karnilla packing. Assuming Spider-Man and his allies can escape the bounds of Nornheim and made their way to more friendly territory, Karnilla very well may have sealed her own fate without even realizing it.
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