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Gravity
GRAVITY005.jpg
Cover art for Gravity #5.
Art by Mike Norton.
Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
First appearance Gravity #1 (June 2005)
Created by Sean McKeever (writer)
Mike Norton (artist)
In-story information
Alter ego Greg Willis
Team affiliations Heavy Hitters
Great Lakes Avengers
Abilities Gravity manipulation

Gravity (Greg Willis) is a fictional character, a superhero in the Marvel Comics Universe. He first appeared in Gravity #1 (June 2005), and was created by Sean McKeever and Mike Norton.

Contents

Publication history

Gravity first appeared in Gravity: Big-City Super Hero, part of the Marvel Next imprint, which was aimed at younger readers and published miniseries in digest format. Since the conclusion of his miniseries, Gravity has appeared in Marvel Team-Up alongside other new heroes such as Araña and X-23 and older characters such as Dagger, Speedball and Terror Inc., Marvel Holiday Special (2005) and Beyond!.

Fictional character biography

Greg Willis was born and grew up in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. During the summer after his high school graduation, an as-of-yet unexplained accident granted him the ability to manipulate gravity.

He enrolled in New York University for his freshman year, intent on succeeding both academically and as the fledgling superhero Gravity. During his first day in New York City, Gravity fights with Black Death, a homicidal anarchist made of strange, black energy, and the hero Rage. Unfortunately, Gravity thinks Rage is the villain, and in the ensuing confusion Black Death gets away. Chastened, Greg reports to his dorm and meets his new roommate, Frog. Frog, apparently a sufferer of ADHD, is a superhero fanboy who Greg finds difficult to deal with. That said, Greg does see a use for Frog's encyclopedic knowledge of superheroes. Later that night, Gravity patrols the city, but is unable to find Black Death. However, he does save an old woman who is having a heart attack by getting her to a hospital in time to save her life. The next morning, on the way to his English class, he meets Lauren Singh, a fellow freshman who picks up his spirits with a friendly race to class.

Lauren and Greg's friendship deepens, but his secret identity is a stumbling block, especially as Lauren dislikes superheroes. As Gravity, he defeats the Rhino, which brings him to the attention of the Daily Bugle. His chest icon, which somewhat resembles a letter X, causes the Bugle and many people to believe he is a mutant.

Gravity remains insecure about his heroism, but things look up for him when he meets a fellow hero named the Greenwich Guardian, self-proclaimed hero of Greenwich Village. The two team up and patrol together, but the Greenwich Guardian disturbs Greg with his violent tendencies, and he decides to operate solo instead. After another confrontation with Black Death, and in the light of his developing relationship with Lauren, Greg decides to stop being Gravity.

However, the Greenwich Guardian soon guilts Greg into teaming up with him so the two can take down Black Death. Greg misses his date with Lauren, who refuses to forgive him; Greg later sees Lauren with another man at a party. Later, Greg's student advisor tells him he is failing all his classes. When Greg meets up with the Greenwich Guardian to trap Black Death, the Guardian reveals himself to be Black Death. Black Death uses Greg's gravity powers to try to damage Greenwich Village and the university campus before Greg ultimately defeats him, though the villain does escape. After the fight, Spider-Man appears and congratulates him. Later, Greg meets Lauren in a café, where he tells her of his plans to quit school and return home. She expresses disappointment in this, giving him a pep talk to stay. The status of their relationship is left unresolved, as is the fate of Greg at NYU. He does decide to take her advice and stick with it for at least the rest of the semester.

Meanwhile, Black Death, in his civilian identity, is doing a computer search for male NYU students from Wisconsin, and Greg (now much more confident in his role as Gravity) is shown stopping the pyrokinetic villain, Brushfire.

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Beyond

Gravity is next seen defeating Brushfire (again), and then being teleported to a world, where he meets Spider-Man, Henry Pym, Wasp, Venom, Kraven, Firebird, and The Hood. It is revealed that he's passed his first semester at NYU and decided to reveal his identity to Lauren, so they are now in a committed relationship. Gravity, contemplating their relationship, jokingly notes to himself that "nothing beats post-save-the-world sex,"[1]

During the battle to survive the hostile world, he meets Deathlok along with the others and come to the realisation that the Beyonder has seemingly brought them together to evaluate them and see who wins in a battle amongst themselves.[2]

Eventually, they engage in a battle where Hank Pym seemingly kills all of them and deceives the Beyonder into revealing his true identity as the Stranger, who wishes to give Hank Pym his award. Of course, a deception is revealed where Hank Pym shrunk them while seemingly killing them, and they engage in battle against the Stranger, observed by Uatu the Watcher, who witnesses all cosmic events concerned with humanity.[3]

After a stalemate where the Stranger agrees to send them back, intimidated by the presence of Uatu, the group seek to escape the disintegrating planet, formerly held together by the Stranger, but now disintegrating after his abandonment of it. Gravity subsequently saves them by creating a gravity tube leading to their escape craft, and shows the full extent of his power by holding the planet together long enough for them to escape. The strain of it kills him, and they then return back to Earth, where all concerned grieve for him. At the end, it is revealed by Uatu the Watcher, that he came to the planet to witness the death of Gravity, and hints that while he may be dead, a cosmic destiny still awaits him.[4]

The Return

When the Fantastic Four are contacted by Michael Collins about Gravity's body being missing from his grave, the new post-Civil War Fantastic Four consisting of the Human Torch, Thing, Black Panther and Storm (Mister Fantastic and the Invisible Woman having taken time off to work on their marriage after fighting on different sides of the war), undergo their first mission to recover his remains[5]. It is then revealed that Gravity is reborn[6]. Gravity was chosen to be the successor to Quasar as the new Protector of the Universe, a role that was later conferred on Phyla-Vell at the end of Annihilation. At the end of the arc, he refused the role, using every bit of his newfound cosmic strength to save Epoch from Galactus' hunger. Gravity returns to Earth, hoping to reunite with his grieving parents and his girlfriend, with his power returned to its original level. Later, when the Fantastic Four are fighting along with Doctor Strange and the Silver Surfer to save the universe, Gravity is contacted by Uatu, and used his power as a 'scalpel' to cut out the 'infected' portions of the universe, allegedly channelling the entirety of the universal mass in the process. Uatu informs Gravity that if he helped do this his secret identity would be restored.

Initiative

After passing a leadership course, Gravity was made the leader of Nevada's Fifty State Initiative team, The Heavy Hitters[7], where he is joined by Hardball, Nonstop[7], Telemetry[7].

The team is later shown helping the Skrull Kill Krew dealing with a Skrull posing as Equinox during the Secret Invasion,[8] then a Skrull posing as Thor Girl [9] and finally an impostor of Great Lakes Avengers member Grasshopper. In this occasion Flatman asks Gravity to join the team, and the latter rejects his offer [10]. Along with Komodo he attempts to bail his teammate Hardball off the deal with HYDRA forcing the young hero to act as a double agent between the Initiative and the terrorist organization. The plan backfires since Hardball, feeling betrayed by the secrecy Gravity and Komodo used on him, refuses their help, soundly defeats Gravity and seizes HYDRA control for himself, swearing enmity to his former friends[11].

Norman Osborn places Prodigy in charge of the Heavy Hitters, and transfers Gravity to the Great Lakes Avengers.[12]

Other versions

Marvel Zombies

Gravity has a cameo in Marvel Zombies: Dead Days. In his only panel of the comic, he is seen attempting to eat Nova, who evades him.

Marvel Team-Up: League of Losers

Gravity features in an arc of Robert Kirkman's Marvel Team-Up (vol. 3), featuring a group of C-list heroes dubbed "The League of Losers". A group of heroes including Gravity, Darkhawk, Dagger, Araña, X-23, Sleepwalker, and Terror go to the future to prevent the villain Chronok from stealing Reed Richards' time machine, Chronok having come to the present and already having killed all of Marvel's major heroes.

It is revealed that Chronok is from the same time period as Kirkman's Mutant 2099; the group stays with him and his mentor Reed Richards to wait for Chronok, and during this time Gravity sparks a relationship with X-23. The team defeats Chronok, but at the end of the story, Richards reveals they can't go back to their present, due to time-travel and alternate timelines. The group decides to stay in the future, satisfied with the impact they made, however unnoticed. Mutant 2099 suggests reforming the Avengers or the "Fantastic Nine".

Note that due to Marvel universe's method for resolving time travel paradoxes, this story occurred in an alternate universe.

References

  1. ^ Beyond #1
  2. ^ Beyond #3
  3. ^ Beyond #5
  4. ^ Beyond #6
  5. ^ Fantastic Four vol. 1 #544
  6. ^ Fantastic Four vol. 1 #545
  7. ^ a b c "Christos Gage (author) Comments" (html). Newsarama.com forums. http://forum.newsarama.com/showpost.php?p=5572090&postcount=43. Retrieved 2008-05-23. 
  8. ^ Avengers: the Initiative #17
  9. ^ Avengers: the Initiative #19
  10. ^ Avengers: the Initiative #19
  11. ^ Avengers: The Initiative Special #1
  12. ^ Avengers: The Initiative #25

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