Garthan Saal was a highly respected member of the Nova Corps that held the rank of Denarian. He was killed during the Battle of Xandar, bravely attempting to keep Ronan the Accuser from destroying the entire planet.
Arresting the Guardians
Garthan Saal stood beside Irani Rael as she spoke to the Kree Ambassador about the recent terrorist attacks committed by Ronan the Accuser. The Ambassador refused to listen and instead cut the conversation short. Although Rael was frustrated by the Ambassador's rudeness, Saal informed her that they had been able to capture one of Ronan's associates Gamora, the adopted daughter of the Mad Titan Thanos.
Garthan Saal and Rhomann Dey were present when Gamora arrived at the Nova Corps Headquarters alongside Peter Quill, Rocket Raccoon and Groot. Dey explained their crimes and Saal ordered him to transfer the prisoners to the Kyln. Dey questioned the decision as he felt that the Kyln was likely too brutal a prison to keep the criminals, but Saal showed his authority and insisted that their local prisons were too overcrowded for house the criminal so the Kyln would have to do for the time being.
Rhomann Dey approached Irani Rael and Saal at the Nova Corps Headquarters to inform her that he had been contacted by Peter Quill, who had escaped from prison with a team of criminals. Dey explained that Quill had warned him that Ronan the Accuser was planning on destroying Xandar with the Orb, an incredibly powerful Infinity Stone. Saal expressed his disbelief in Quill, noting that he was a criminal. In the end, Rael chose to believe Quill's story and sent Saal out to command the Corps' fleet of Star Blasters.
Before long, Ronan's ship the Dark Aster arrived on Xandar and his army and Sakaarans descended upon the city. Saal quickly caught up with Quill and the small army of Ravagers who were helping him; Saal's soldiers assisted Quill by shooting the Sakaarans from the sky, allowing him to enter the ship. To ensure Ronan's ship could not land, Saal used his Star Blaster to lock with the rest of the Nova Corps fleet and create a blockade around the Dark Aster. As a response to the Nova Corps resistance, Ronan the Accuser ordered his Sakaaran ships to dive-bomb the city, putting hundreds to innocent lives at risk.
Saal knew that it was more important to ensure the Dark Aster did not land; Rocket Raccoon led the Ravagers in defense of the city, shooting the Sakaaran ships from the sky. Still unable to land the vessel, Ronan stepped forward and used the Orb's power to destroy the Xandarian Fleet. Although Saal attempted to continue fighting, his ship was caught in the explosion, killing him. After his death, Rhomann Dey took his place as Denarian in the Nova Corps.
Garthan Saal was a very open minded and dutiful individual. Despite advising the Nova Corps not to trust the Guardians, he ultimately went with the order to trust them and was willing to be proven wrong. He did seem to change his mind during the battle after seeing Rocket Raccoon save the people from Ronan's fleet divebombing a Xandarian city and even called out to Rocket to save him right before his ship exploded.
- Star Blaster: During the Battle of Xandar, he commanded the Nova Corps' fleet of Star Blasters and piloted one himself.
- In the comics, Garthan Saal was a member of the Nova Corps that became a being known as Nova Omega or Supernova, the recipient of all the Nova Corps' cosmic force, after the destruction of Xandar.