|For other uses, see Eternals (disambiguation)|
The Eternals are a race of near-immortal synthetic beings created by the Celestials. They were sent to multiple planets to protect and help evolve sentient lifeforms to power a Celestial seed inside the planet, which would absorb the energy made from the sentient lifeforms. Ten of these Eternals arrived on Earth during the Stone Age to protect humanity from the Deviants.
The Eternals were built and programmed by the Prime Celestial Arishem the Judge at the World Forge. They were sent to numerous planets with implanted Celestial seeds, with orders to protect and help evolve sentient lifeforms which power the growing Celestial within their worlds. Eventually the Emergence would occur, destroying the seeded worlds and the lifeforms within.
Upon finishing their mission, the Eternals would be returned to the World Forge to have their memories erased and reset, then sent to another world to start the cycle all over again. They would be given false memories of being from a planet called Olympia, on a mission to watch over developing worlds, and they would be prohibited from interfering with the natives' conflicts unless Deviants are involved. The leader of a team was designated the Prime Eternal, and possessed the means to directly talk with their creator.
The Eternals shepherded the Emergence of a Celestial on the planet Centuri-Six many millennia ago. According to Thena's fragmented recollection of the event, they all died with the world, only to be rebuilt at the World Forge. However, Thena's mind was not properly erased, which would have repercussions for her team on their eventual mission to Earth.
Arriving on Earth
In 5000 B.C Arishem sent ten Eternals, consisting of Ajak, Sersi, Ikaris, Thena, Kingo, Sprite, Phastos, Makkari, Druig, and Gilgamesh, to Earth. During their arrival at Mesopotamia, they protected a tribe of humans from a pack of Deviants. Emerging victorious, the Eternals introduced themselves to the colony, starting a largely peaceful coexistence that lasted for millennia.
The Eternals influenced numerous ancient cultures in their wake. They had some involvement in the Stonehenge, Australian Aboriginal art, Jomon period Japan, Ancient Egypt, Hindu mythology, Greek civilization, Mesoamerican cultures, and Southeast Asian myths. Some of their battles with Deviants would be distorted over time and represented in art in more familiar forms, such as "angels" or "knights" fighting "dragons", "griffins", or other mythological beasts. While at peace they sometimes helped the humans in more mundane tasks like house building or irrigation, or nurtured their creativity through storytelling and occasional gifts of technology.
In 575 B.C the Eternals repelled a Deviant threat to the city of Babylon. In the aftermath, Ajak reported on humanity's progress to Arishem, who warned her not to get too attached when she began seeing their potential. Phastos attempted to introduce the steam engine to humans, though the other Eternals deemed it too soon for humanity's current technological state. Phastos then settled for introducing the plow, which would prove more immediately useful around the city.
During the celebrations after the defeat of Deviants near the Ishtar Gate, Sprite heavily embellished Gilgamesh's involvement to an audience of attentive listeners, forming the basis of the myths that made him legendary.
Over time the Eternals developed certain relationships with each other while doing their duty as humanity's protectors against Deviants. In 400 AD, Sersi and Ikaris married each other during the Gupta Empire in India, with their brethren all in attendance. Gilgamesh and Thena frequently partnered in slaying Deviants, with Gilgamesh's brute strength and Thena's finesse synergizing effectively. Druig and Makkari had a flirtatious rapport with each other since Babylonian times, though this would not be realized by the others until millennia later.
The Eternals were also aware of extraterrestrial involvement in Earth's affairs and crossed paths with several factions when necessary. In 965 AD, the Eternals participated in the Battle of Tønsberg at Norway, siding with the Asgardians when the Frost Giants invaded. With the Asgardians victorious, Odin presented Gilgamesh with a secret brew recipe as a reward.
The 500-Year War
The Eternals resided in the Domo up until the early 16th century. In the five centuries prior they engaged Deviants in 1084 CE Heian-kyō, 1142 CE Korea, 1238 CE reconquista Spain, 1520 CE Atlantic Ocean, and Ming Dynasty China. Compared to normal clashes, the Eternals fought Deviants in those places that were more intelligent and were capable of strategizing. It turned out the Deviants were hunting the Eternals themselves, not just the humans, and had begun replicating the Eternals' ability to use cosmic energy.
The team found a Deviant nest in a remote part of China, where they fought against a coordinated strike led by a "kappa" Deviant that learned to mimic Druig's mind control powers. The team responded with a counterattack of their own, which resulted in Thena dealing the killing blow against the kappa. Due to the Deviants' hive mind they all collapsed upon the kappa's death, granting victory yet again for the Eternals.
In 1521 AD the Eternals vanquished a Deviant threat around Tenochtitlan, and they believed they completely eliminated the Deviants around the planet. However, at the time there was an ongoing genocide between conquistadors and the natives. The violence triggered memories of death and destruction within Thena, causing her to attack her brethren. She managed to wound Sersi, Makkari, Phastos, and Ajak before Gilgamesh was able to subdue her.
Regrouping to a temple in the city, the other Eternals realized Thena has Mahd Wy'ry, which they thought to be a myth. Ajak offered to erase Thena's memories to cure her, though Thena declined. Druig, fed up with repeated admonitions against using his powers to interfere with human conflicts, began to force the warring factions outside to drop their weapons, swearing the other Eternals would have to kill him to make him stop. Ikaris would have done so, had Ajak not stopped him.
With this, Druig departed the Eternals and the city with his mind-controlled humans. With the Deviants eradicated, Ajak advised the others to go as well, wanting them to live a life for themselves among the humans. Gilgamesh pledged to take care of Thena in exchange for letting her keep her memories.
Living Amongst Humans
As the centuries passed by and humanity progressed, the Eternals faded to myth as they adjusted to living anonymously among the masses. They began wearing period-appropriate clothing in lieu of their otherworldly armor. Sprite and Kingo stayed for a time in Macedonia, though the latter abandoned the former there. They had to move every 5 years or people would realize Sprite never aged, and Kingo became sick of that. Kingo eventually settled in India, where he masqueraded his immortality by presenting himself as a Bollywood actor (and his forebears) for five generations. Gilgamesh and Thena made a home in the Australian Outback, where Thena's outbursts would do minimal harm to anyone.
Ikaris and Sersi lived together until the 1920s, when Ikaris abandoned his wife. Ajak wandered the world, though she eventually erected a homestead in South Dakota, USA. Sprite resided with Ajak there for a while, before going to London to live with Sersi after Ikaris' departure. Sersi eventually moved on and began a relationship with a human named Dane Whitman. Phastos married and had a family in Chicago.
Druig isolated himself and his mind-controlled humans in the Amazon for 20 human generations. Makkari went back to the Domo in Iraq, living there alone amongst her hoarded historical artifacts, waiting for the time the Eternals were allowed to go home.
In 2023, after the Blip, Ikaris visited Ajak in her homestead to discuss Earth's impending Emergence. With only about 7 days remaining, Ajak announced her intention to gather the other Eternals to plan how to stop the Emergence. In all her millions of years of existence she has become impressed with humanity's feat reversing the Snap, enough to defy Arishem's mandate for this one world. Ikaris seemingly supported her stance, then flew her to Alaska, where a pack of Deviants thawed out of the ice due to the Earth's core heating up.
Ikaris, who had learned of the Eternals' true mission after they left Babylon, was unwilling to contradict his reason for being. Remorsefully he pushed Ajak onto the Deviant pack and let her be killed by the beasts. After the Deviants' leader Kro absorbed her energies, Ikaris flew Ajak's corpse back to her home, intending to delay the others by making them focus on the Deviant threat rather than the Emergence.
Return of the Deviants
Sprite, Sersi, and Dane were attacked by Kro in London, only to be rescued by Ikaris. With the Deviants apparently returned, Sersi confessed her real identity to Dane, who mistakenly thought she was a wizard, before leaving him in London to go with Sprite and Ikaris to Ajak to determine their next moves. Upon discovering Ajak's corpse, the Celestial Communication Sphere Ajak used to confer with Arishem rose out of her body and into Sersi, designating her as the next Prime Eternal.
Ikaris, Sersi, and Sprite then traveled to Mumbai to apprise Kingo of the recent news. Kingo and his valet Karun Patel joined the trio, then transported the group to Australia in Kingo's Jet in order to gather Gilgamesh and Thena.
After getting a better handle on controlling the communication sphere, Sersi managed to converse with Arishem at length, where she learned about the Emergence, the Eternals' true nature as synthetic beings, and the Deviants' origin. Sharing her discoveries with the others, they then resolved to continue reuniting the rest of the Eternals.
Going to Druig's Compound next, Sersi and the others wanted his ability to control minds as a possible means of delaying the Emergence, by trying to put Tiamut the Communicator back to sleep. Druig was initially resistant to the idea in light of the other reveals, though Deviants attacked the compound shortly afterward. Most of the beasts were killed, though Gilgamesh also died and his powers were absorbed by Kro. Following a funeral for the fallen Eternal, Druig became more amenable to the plan, and Sersi suggested they need Phastos next for his intellect.
Phastos had become disillusioned with humans after the atomic destruction in Hiroshima, though over 70 years later he rekindled his passions by having a family and seeing the best of humanity in them. Sersi and Ikaris visited Phastos in Chicago, though he didn't want to leave his family behind even while the world was ending. He was persuaded by his husband Ben Stoss to go save the world for their son Jack's sake.
The mostly assembled Eternals then traveled to Iraq to unearth the Domo which they left buried under Babylon for millennia. To their surprise Makkari was already inside, bored and waiting to go back to Olympia.
With all extant Eternals gathered, the plan to stop the Emergence was afoot. Using the ship's lab Phastos was able to conceptualize a way to boost an Eternal's abilities by having the others pool their powers into the individual, calling it the Uni-Mind. He wasn't finished yet and was in the middle of figuring out the specifics when Ikaris finally interfered and stopped him from progressing. Sersi realized Ikaris' complicity in Ajak's death, and Ikaris admitted it wasn't easy to keep lying to the group knowing the world would end.
An ideological split developed between the Eternals. Ikaris wanted the Emergence to continue because that was his Arishem-given reason for being. Sprite followed Ikaris because she nursed centuries-long unrequited feelings for him. Kingo believed in the Emergence's contribution to the greater good, but was unwilling to hurt his family over it. Ikaris and Sprite left the Domo to await the others at the Emergence point that Makkari discovered, and Kingo left the ship with Karun aiming to abstain from the coming fight.
Phastos realized he could use Sersi's communication sphere to link the Eternals together, and used its materials to fashion bracelets for the remaining Eternals. They then proceeded to the Emergence point in the Indian Ocean, planning to have Druig initiate the Uni-Mind. Druig was initially successful in calming Tiamut down, though Ikaris flew in, gave him a beating, and attacked the Domo, causing it to crash. With Druig out of commission, Sersi then volunteered to use her powers instead, though doing so will kill the Celestial. Sprite attempted to stop her from reaching an optimal vantage point, though she was shortly knocked down by an injured Druig.
Meanwhile, Ikaris fought an enraged Makkari, then Phastos and Thena. Kro emerged from the ocean to engage in the fight, later goading Thena to face him alone. He nearly managed to absorb her powers by taking advantage of her Mahd Wy'ry, though Thena became lucid in time to generate weapons and slice him up.
Phastos manifested restraints that blocked Ikaris from accessing much of his powers while Sersi executed the plan. Druig could no longer put Tiamut to sleep in his condition, so Sersi began transmuting Tiamut to stone. Ikaris broke out of the restraints and flew to Sersi aiming to kill her, but he was unable to do it to his former wife. A Uni-Mind was initiated among the Eternals, even with Sprite, Ikaris, and Tiamut himself, thus Sersi was able to transform the entire Celestial to stone.
Ikaris was unable to deal with failing both the Eternals and Arishem, and flew himself to the sun to commit suicide. Sersi had some energy left from the Uni-Mind, and offered to turn Sprite into a regular human, which she readily accepted.
Two weeks after the death of Tiamut, the remaining Eternals split into two groups: Kingo, Phastos, Sersi, and the now-human Sprite resumed their lives on Earth while Druig, Makkari, and Thena took the repaired Domo to the stars to search for other Eternals and reveal their actual mission to them. However, Arishem personally manifested above Earth and captured Kingo, Phastos, and Sersi, disappearing just as abruptly as he appeared. He wanted to examine their memories if humanity's potential was worth the loss of Tiamut, warning that he'll be back one day to render judgement. With this, all extant Eternals are now off-world, except the former Eternal Sprite.
Meeting Other Eternals
Weeks after the abduction of the Eternals on Earth, the group aboard the Domo were becoming worried as none of their compatriots have been responding to their hails. They were interrupted by the intrusion of Pip the Troll, who teleported aboard the ship in time to herald the arrival of Eros, another Eternal. Eros broke the news of the Earth Eternals' kidnapping to the group, though fortunately he knew where they are. 
Technology and Weapons
- Domo: The Eternals boarded the Domo in order to arrive on Earth. The starship was later used by Druig, Makkari and Thena in their search for other Eternals throughout the Cosmos.
- Kingo's Jet: The Eternals boarded Kingo's private jet in order to find Gilgamesh, Thena, Druig, Phastos, and Makkari before the Emergence could begin.
The Eternals are outwardly physically indistinguishable to humans, although they possess far greater strength, agility, and durability than an average human. They are capable of "living" forever without aging, due to the fact that they possess a synthetic body rather than an organic one. Beneath the skin, they appear to have metallic musculatures and endoskeletons, although they "bleed" something similar to red blood when injured. They can survive the vacuum of space without any protection or breathing gear, compared to most organics who would rupture blood vessels and suffocate shortly after exposure. Because they are artificial and not biological, they do not qualify as part of “life in existence,” allowing them to survive spells or events that specifically target living beings, such as the Snap.
As synthetic beings, their memories can be erased, analyzed, and backed-up, and if their bodies are destroyed they can simply be manufactured again in the World Forge, a deep-space facility where their memories of previous missions are stored and the place where they were created. If something goes wrong with an Eternal's mindwipe, the affected individual may develop Mahd Wy'ry, a malfunction where they begin attacking anyone on sight as a result of jumbled recollections of previous missions to other worlds. There is no cure other than possibly letting the individual know of their memories' true nature.
The Eternals are fueled by infinite cosmic energy, imbued upon them by Arishem during their creation. They use this energy to keep their bodies regenerating indefinitely. Through technological means, they can reallocate their energies and pool them into a single Eternal, whose abilities will then be boosted beyond their normal limits at the cost of momentarily shutting down their regeneration.
Other than regeneration, each Eternal utilizes cosmic energy differently in accordance to their specific role. Of the ten Eternals sent to Earth, five of them use their energies in directly combating the Deviants: exoskeleton generation, heat vision, flight, super speed, energy projection, and weapon generation are all effective tools for this task. The other five function in more support capabilities: transmutation, healing, mind control, illusion projection, and technopathy. Their powers manifest as golden energy forming intricate designs with a circles-and-lines motif, usually over their hands, their armor, or other affected objects.
Few things are able to permanently harm, much less kill, Eternals. Eternals drained of cosmic energy "die" shortly: their skin quickly takes on a greyish pallor, cracks in places like alabaster, and become etched with the circles-and-lines motif prevalent in their technology and aesthetics. Their deactivated bodies can be cremated by regular fires.
- In the comics, Eternals and Deviants are genetic off-shoots of races that the Celestials have experimented on. For Earth, in 1,000,000 B.C., the Celestials' First Host experimented on early humans and created 100 Eternals (Homo immortalis) before leaving. In addition to being immortal, the Eternals of Earth have a resurrection machine located in Antarctica that they can use to revive their fallen.
- While the most commonly known Eternals are those derived from Earth, the Celestials have made Eternals of other species as well. An example of an alien Eternal is Hyperion.
- In the comics, Thanos is an Eternal, though he was born with a Deviant syndrome that makes him look like a Deviant.
- Five of the Eternals are more of the thinkers: Sprite, Druig, Ajak, Sersi and Phastos; and the other five are more of the fighters: Gilgamesh, Kingo, Ikaris, Thena and Makkari.
Behind the Scenes
- In early versions of the Eternals script, there were 12 Eternals instead of 10. The two Eternals that got cut were Zuras and Valkin; the latter would have also went by another Eternal's name, Vampiro, as a luchador.
- Jeremy Slater, the head writer and executive producer of Moon Knight, wanted an action scene with one of Khonshu's former avatars and some of the Eternals in Ancient Egypt, but such a scene would have been too expensive to produce and was cut.
- Dan on Twitter - April 28, 2022
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