Nebula is a Luphomoid assassin, an adopted daughter of the intergalactic warlord Thanos and adopted sister of Gamora. As the right-hand woman of Ronan the Accuser during his and Thanos' quest to retrieve the Orb, she helped him fight the Guardians of the Galaxy during the Battle of Xandar. Fleeing the battle after a fight with Gamora, Nebula was soon captured by the Sovereign and handed back to the Guardians. She escaped and helped Taserface lead the other Ravagers in a mutiny against their former leader Yondu Udonta before leaving to find and kill Gamora. After forgiving and helping her sister alongside the Guardians during the Battle on Ego's Planet, she left in a ship to pursue a revenge mission against Thanos.
Nebula was eventually captured by Thanos, however, and used as a bargaining tool to convince Gamora to reveal the location of the Soul Stone. Escaping and then pursuing Thanos to Titan, Nebula learned that Thanos had killed Gamora and aided both the Guardians, Doctor Strange, Iron Man and Spider-Man during the Battle of Titan. Despite their efforts, they failed to stop Thanos from obtaining the Infinity Stones, which he then used to wipe out half the universe's population. Nebula was among those who survived but was left alone in space while departing from Titan to Earth with Stark in Benatar until they are found by Captain Marvel, who brought the pair to the New Avengers Facility in New York.
Now on Earth, Nebula joined the Avengers, participating on the Ambush on Thanos. Following Thanos' murder at the hands of Thor, she spent the next five years traveling throughout the world with Rocket Raccoon under Natasha Romanoff's command. In 2023, she joined her fellow Avengers in the Time Heist, traveling to Morag in 2014 with War Machine to retrieve the Power Stone. However, she was kidnapped and replaced by her younger self, who took her place and returned to the future. Teaming up with the Gamora from 2014, Nebula killed her alternate past self and participated in the Battle of Earth. Following the death of Tony Stark and the subsequent resurrection of the lives lost in the Snap, Nebula attended his funeral to honor him. Nebula, along with Thor and Rocket, left the Avengers and joined the Guardians of the Galaxy once again.
Trained for Thanos
As an infant, Thanos invaded Nebula's home planet, murdering her whole family yet taking her to train her as merciless warrior devoted to his service. While Nebula greatly despised her other adopted siblings, she formed a genuine bond with Gamora to the point that they began to truly consider each other as sisters. Throughout her childhood, Nebula trained to be a Galaxy-class killer under the tutelage of Ronan the Accuser. Nebula would often train alongside Gamora and Korath.
Thanos regularly had Nebula spar with Gamora to test their strengths with Gamora winning every match. Every time Nebula lost, Thanos would upgrade her to try and make her Gamora's equal. Nebula grew to resent Gamora for never letting her win causing Thanos to torture her.
One training scenario on the arboreal world of Dervani saw Nebula and Gamora pitted against each other in a competition to retrieve a data ingot for Ronan. The girls sparred on the surface, leading to Gamora throwing Nebula off a cliff, severely injuring her and requiring multiple cybernetic replacements in order for her to live. Upon reaching adulthood, Nebula and Gamora served Thanos under the command of Korath.
On a mission to locate the Orb on Praxius IX, inside of one of the Cloud Tombs of Praxius, Nebula went in without waiting for Gamora and fell into a trap. Ensnared by an impenetrable Laser Thorn Energy Net, Nebula found herself at the mercy of the inhabitants and needed to be rescued by Gamora. Never one to tolerate failure, Thanos ordered Gamora to leave Nebula behind, with only a sharp blade to free herself. Nebula was forced to amputate her own arm in order to escape the netting.
Following Ronan's Orders
Thanos lent Nebula and Gamora to Ronan the Accuser, who made a deal to retrieve the Orb for Thanos so he would, in turn, destroy Xandar. When Korath reported that he had failed to retrieve the Orb on Morag, thanks to Star-Lord's intervention, Nebula was tasked to retrieve the Orb from Star-Lord. Nebula told him it would be an honor, but Gamora insisted that she follow Quill as she knew Xandar. Ronan agreed and Gamora went on the mission.
When they left the meeting, Nebula confronted Gamora and they had a brief argument where they tried to break each other's fingers. Nebula accused her sister of now attempting to become Ronan's favorite and they argued over who was the superior killer. When Nebula mentioned that the screams of her victims could be heard across the galaxy, Gamora replied that it was because she took too long to kill them before walking away from Nebula.
When Ronan and Nebula received word that Gamora had betrayed them only to be sent to the Kyln with the Orb, The Other demanded they travel to the Sanctuary to discuss this with Thanos. There, Nebula repaired her cybernetic arm while Ronan argued with The Other, only for Ronan to snap his neck. Thanos responded by threatening Ronan if he failed again. As they left, Nebula assured Ronan that he would not win a fight with her father.
When they arrived at the Kyln, they discovered Gamora had already escaped with the Orb, with the help of Star-Lord and others. Ronan's soldiers took over the prison and Nebula tortured a Nova Guard to gather more information. She received a message on her cybernetics that the Nova Corps were on their way to defend the prison. As they were leaving Ronan ordered Nebula to send their Necrocraft across the galaxy to begin the search for Gamora and to cleanse the prison, murdering all of the guards and the prisoners.
Following the orders of Ronan the Accuser, Nebula and Korath continued their search for the Orb across the galaxy onboard the Dark Aster, until they received a message from Drax the Destroyer telling them it was on Knowhere where they went to recover it. Upon arriving onboard Necrocraft and their army of Sakaarans, they were spotted by Gamora and her new team, who escaped into a Mining Pod while Nebula gave chase with her small army.
While Ronan began fighting with Drax, whose wife and daughter had been killed by the Kree, Nebula lead a squad of soldiers in fighters to chase Gamora across Knowhere, while fighting off Star-Lord and Rocket Raccoon who defended their ally. Eventually, Gamora was forced to head into deep space which shut down her pod. Nebula destroyed her ship, despite her pleas, and leaving her for dead in space and retrieved the Orb for her master Ronan.
Both Nebula and Korath the Pursuer were present when Ronan the Accuser told Thanos he was aware of the Orb's nature as one of the Infinity Stones. Ronan ripped open the Orb and harnessed its power, becoming the most powerful being in the universe. Ronan told Thanos he would destroy Xandar and then find and destroy The Mad Titan. Nebula offered her total loyalty to Ronan should he succeed, swearing to help him destroy a thousand planets.
When they arrived on Xandar, a fleet of Ravagers lead by Yondu Udonta and Star-Lord engaged them. The fleet fired a blot of flame to disguise their moves, but Nebula saw that they had dived under the ship and she ordered all their fighters to destroy the ships. Once they received word that the side of the ship had been breached, Nebula tried to convince Ronan the Accuser to retaliate but he refused, stating that his focus was to land on the planet's surface so he could finally destroy it.
Deciding to take matters into her own hands, Nebula took a squad of soldiers with her to engage the attackers before shutting the door, locking in Ronan. When Star-Lord, Gamora, Rocket Raccoon and Drax breached the ship, Nebula confronted them. As Nebula began to insult her former sister, she was silenced when Drax shot her with a rocket, sending her flying backward and damaging her body while allowing the Guardians to continue on their mission.
Duel against Gamora
The shot fired by Drax the Destroyer caused Nebula's entire body to be damaged, but her cybernetic implants helped to repair her within moments, twisting her arm and jaw back into place. Once she was repaired Nebula began to fight Gamora, using her electrified batons against Gamora's Godslayer. During their fight against each other, the side of the ship was suddenly torn apart by an explosion as the Battle of Xandar between the Yondu Ravager Clan and the Sakaarans continued on.
During their fight, Gamora attempted to unlock an armored door to assist the Guardians of the Galaxy, however, Nebula did all she could to delay this action. Eventually, Nebula managed to gain the upper hand by disarming Gamora and then using her batons to electrocute Gamora, nearly killing her. However, Gamora regained her strength and knocked her outside of the hole in the Dark Aster and leaving Nebula hanging onto the edge of the hole.
As Nebula hung hundreds of feet above Xandar's surface, with her hand trapped onto a spike, Gamora tried to convince her to fight against Ronan the Accuser, claiming Ronan was crazy. But Nebula refused, citing they were both crazy and cut off her cybernetic hand. However, instead of falling from the sky to her death, she landed on top of a Ravager's M-ship. Nebula then threw the pilot out and took control of the ship before flying it far away from the battle.
Captured by the Sovereign
Sometime later, Nebula was arrested by Ayesha and the Sovereign for trying to steal expensive Anulax Batteries. Six months after the Battle of Xandar, the Guardians of the Galaxy took custody of her to hand over to the Nova Corps. As the Milano piloted away, Nebula was handcuffed inside the ship and demanded food being ignored by the Guardians.
While still locked up Nebula continued to mock Gamora for joining the Guardians before demanding that she be fed some fruit, which Gamora refused to give her, claiming the fruit was still not ripe enough. When the Sovereign fleet attacked after Rocket Raccoon stole the batteries, Nebula was almost sucked out of the ship, but escaped her restraints. Her hands remained handcuffed and she demanded to be released after they crashed on Berhert to fight whoever was in the unidentified craft, with Nebula surviving the crash with the others.
Deal with Taserface
- "I thought you were the biggest sadist in the galaxy."
"That was when Daddy was paying my bills. The Priestess wants to kill the fox herself. And he has bounties on his head in at least twelve Kree provinces. I assure you, I am not as easy a mark as an old man without his magic stick or a talking woodland beast."
- ―Taserface and Nebula
Nebula witnessed Ego's revelation that he was Star-Lord's father. The next day she was left in the Milano with Rocket Raccoon and Groot whilst Gamora, Quill and Drax the Destroyer went with Ego and Mantis. When Yondu Udonta and the Ravagers attacked the Milano, she managed to persuade Groot to release her before shooting Yondu's fin and then shooting Rocket in the chest.
She was taken aboard Yondu's ship witnessing the mutiny led by Taserface before demanding ten percent of the bounty Ayesha had placed on the Guardians of the Galaxy as well as 'some other things'. Nebula was given a new cybernetic hand by Kraglin Obfonteri as well as an M-ship. She informed him of her upbringing with Thanos and how he had 'upgraded' her every time she lost a sparring match to Gamora. Nebula explained that after she killed Gamora she would use her ten percent to buy every ship she could to kill Thanos.
Fight with Gamora
- "I'm not the one who just flew across the universe just because I wanted to win!"
"Do not tell me what I want!"
- ―Gamora and Nebula
Nebula flew to Ego the Living Planet and began firing at Gamora pursuing her into caverns before being trapped as her M-ship prepared to explode. She was rescued by her sister, but, instead of being grateful, attacked her sister, but she couldn't bring herself to kill her. The pair formed an uneasy alliance after Nebula revealed her anger at Gamora's attitude during their upbringing. They then walked through the caverns and discovered a large pile of bones.
- "This is gonna hurt!"
- ―Yondu Udonta and Nebula
Nebula and Gamora rushed back to the palace and confronted Mantis who agreed to help them. Along with Drax the Destroyer, they burst into the main hall to find Ego attacking Star-Lord before a ship piloted by Yondu Udonta and Rocket Raccoon crushed him. Nebula agreed to help as the Guardians were her only ride off of Ego.
During the Battle on Ego's Planet, she wired the ship up to her cybernetic arm to provide power to the lasers which electrocuted her and caused her great pain but destroyed the Sovereign fleet in the process. When the ship was destroyed she joined the Guardians of the Galaxy in the heart of the planet to continue the fight. When Ego attacked, Nebula saved Gamora from falling to her death with the sisters climbing back up to the fight before being trapped and suffocated in organic matter. When Star-Lord took control, they were both released, which allowed them to reach the ship piloted by Kraglin Obfonteri.
Reconciling with Gamora
- "You will always be my sister."
- ―Gamora to Nebula
Nebula prepared to leave during Yondu Udonta's funeral. Despite Gamora's attempts to persuade her into joining them, she chose to leave and try to kill Thanos instead and prevent other people's daughters from sharing the same fate she has suffered. The two sisters hugged before Nebula departed.
In the years following the battle with Ego, Nebula attempted to kill Thanos by sneaking onto the Sanctuary II. She nearly succeeded but was caught by her former master and put in a torture chamber, where her cybernetic parts were pulled apart from her body, causing immense pain. When Thanos captured Gamora after she attempted to stop him on Knowhere, he brought her to Nebula to force her to reveal the location of the Soul Stone.
Thanos began torturing Nebula again, tearing the cybernetic parts from her body using the Infinity Gauntlet, in an attempt to get the information from Gamora. Gamora at first resisted, claiming she didn't know the location of the Soul Stone. Thanos, who knew that Gamora was lying, played a clip from Nebula's memory using a projector in her cybernetic parts. The clip showed Gamora having a conversation with Nebula, in which Gamora stated that she found the map to the Soul Stone, but decided to burn it to ash to prevent Thanos from finding it. After commenting on how poor of a liar Gamora was, Thanos started ruthlessly torturing Nebula again, until Gamora gave in and told Thanos the location of the Soul Stone: Vormir.
When Thanos and Gamora left, one of his henchmen began putting Nebula back together. Seizing a quick opportunity, she killed the henchman and made a quick escape from her captivity. Nebula contacted Mantis, requesting her and the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy to meet her on Titan, knowing that the members of Thanos' Black Order would meet him there once they found the Time Stone and Mind Stone. Getting inside a Necrocraft, she flew to Titan with the desire to enact her plan to kill Thanos.
- "You should have killed me!"
"It would have been a waste of parts!"
- ―Nebula and Thanos
When she arrived on Titan, the Guardians of the Galaxy were fighting alongside Iron Man, Spider-Man, and Doctor Strange in a battle with Thanos. Nebula crashed the Necrocraft into Thanos, then exited the spacecraft and attacked him with an electrified staff. She furiously told him that he should have killed her, to which Thanos coldly remarked that it would have been a waste of parts. As she continued to fight him, Nebula demanded to know where Gamora was.
Although she fought ferociously, Nebula would prove to be no match for Thanos and was quickly thrown back into a pile of rocks. The Guardians and Avengers then restrained Thanos, with Mantis successfully putting him into a passive state. Star-Lord then asked Thanos where Gamora was.
Realizing that Gamora had not returned with Thanos from their trip to Vormir, Nebula informed this to Star-Lord, and Thanos confirmed that it was true by muttering that he had to kill her. Stricken with grief, Star-Lord began to attack Thanos' face with his blaster in a state of blind fury, weakening Mantis' grip on Thanos.
Despite Iron Man's attempts to hold Star-Lord back, it was too late; Thanos was able to break free and overpower the Avengers and Guardians. After escaping, Thanos blasted Drax, Star-Lord, and Nebula with a burst of energy from the Power Stone, leaving the three of them unconscious. Thanos then pulled chunks of Titan's moon down from orbit, causing a meteor shower to engulf the planet. Nebula, Drax, Star-Lord, and Mantis all began to lifelessly float in the air due to Titan's fluctuating gravity and the intense impact from the meteors.
Nebula was saved by Spider-Man, who had also saved Star-Lord, Drax the Destroyer, and Mantis by adhering them to a floating rock with his webbing. After successfully besting Iron Man and Doctor Strange, Strange gave Thanos the Time Stone so that he would spare Stark's life, saying that the Avengers were now in the end game. Thanos then left Titan in pursuit of the final Infinity Stone, the Mind Stone, on Earth.
While he was on the Earth, Thanos had successfully got the Mind Stone and, using the full Infinity Gauntlet, snapped his fingers, wiping out half of all sentient life in the universe. Nebula, having survived the Snap, grimly watched as the Guardians of the Galaxy as well as Doctor Strange, and Spider-Man had all perished and faded into ash as a result of Thanos' victory. Nebula told Tony Stark that Thanos had succeeded in his mission, with visible despair on her face. She then sat on the ground as she grieved Gamora's death and Thanos' victory.
Trapped in Space
Days later, the two repaired the Benatar, allowing them to set a course for Earth. Nebula was with Tony Stark, drifting endlessly on the Benatar following the Battle of Titan. They bonded and developed a friendly relationship, playing games including paper football together. Nineteen days in, food and water began to run out and Nebula and Stark were aware that they most likely were going to die, only for Captain Marvel to save them both.
Once they landed at the New Avengers Facility, Nebula reunited with Rocket Raccoon and the other Avengers. A disheartened Rocket asked about the status of the other Guardians of the Galaxy, only for her to solemnly look down. With Captain Marvel's assistance, the surviving Avengers discussed where Thanos could be so that they could get back the Infinity Stones and bring everyone back to existence. Nebula said she knew where Thanos was as she likely knew his plans for after the snap but could only provided the Garden. Despite this, Captain Marvel managed to deduce where this likely was and they successfully figured out his location.
- "I used the stones to destroy the stones. It nearly killed me, but the work is done. It always will be. I am inevitable."
"We have to tear this place apart. We have to tear this place apart. He... he... he has to be lying."
"My father is many things. A liar is not one of them."
- ―Thanos, War Machine and Nebula
When they arrived to Titan II, Captain Marvel was dispatched to scout the entirety of the planet. After which she concluded that Thanos was alone in exile, the Avengers headed to Thanos' resting place, the Avengers quickly restrained Thanos, cutting off his arm with the Infinity Gauntlet and restricting his movement. Rocket Raccoon, who Nebula developed a bond with both having lost the little family they had managed to gain, then kicked Thanos' detached limb to discover that the stones are gone. Thanos explained that he actually destroyed the Stones prior to their arrival to ensure that the Snap remains permanent, mentioning that it had almost killed him when doing so.
Many of the Avengers were skeptical of this, but Nebula said that while Thanos was many things, a liar wasn't one of them. Thanos confirms this by thanking Nebula for pointing that out and admitting that he was wrong to be too harsh on her. This enraged Thor in cutting Thanos' head off in retaliation. Despite her hatred towards Thanos and wanting him dead, Nebula was touched by his last words and mourns for him by closing his eyelids out of respect. She and the other Avengers are forced to accept with the losses that Thanos has caused to them for the rest of their lives.
In the five years after the Snap, Nebula helped the Avengers and what is left of interstellar law maintain peace. She joined Rocket Raccoon on the Benatar, and inspects a ship suspected of selling weapons, only for it to be a garbage scow. During a holo-conference, she voices her frustration at Captain Marvel for sending them into such a situation. At the conference's end, she and Rocket return to patrol.
Following Scott Lang's return, she and Rocket return to Earth following a summons from the Avengers about a plan to undo Thanos' snap. At the New Avengers Facility, she and Rocket each debriefed the Avengers about the Soul and Power Stones respectively. Rocket details the events about Star-Lord stealing the Power Stone from Morag, and Nebula provides what information she can about Vormir and its isolation from any interstellar traffic, rendering it isolated from the universe and also proceeded to inform the Avengers that Vormir was the location from which Thanos murdered Gamora. As they tested the Advanced Tech Suit, Nebula adjusted the inner functions while Bruce Banner educated James Rhodes and Lang about time travel mechanics. Following a successful time jump, she along with the Avengers gear up with their suits, and aim for their targets, the Infinity Stones in the past.
After reexamining the information about the Infinity Stones across their respective encounters, Banner, Tony Stark, and Natasha Romanoff managed to narrow down three periods where each stone are aligned with three small teams: 2012 with the Mind, Space, and Time Stones at the Battle of New York and the New York Sanctum; 2013 with the Reality Stone occupying Jane Foster on Asgard; 2014 with the Power Stone on Morag and the Soul Stone on Vormir.
When the teams are assigned, Nebula teams up with War Machine, Black Widow, and Hawkeye to collect the Power and Soul Stone in 2014. While Black Widow and Hawkeye splintered for Vormir to retrieve the Soul Stone, Nebula partnered with War Machine to seize the Power Stone before Star-Lord could get a hold of it. As War Machine reviewed the plan, Nebula reminded him that there are others searching for the Stones. namely Thanos, Gamora, and herself; as Nebula was still a fanatic of Thanos' grand plan in 2014.
2014 Nebula is seen battling alien soldiers as Thanos wages another cleansing for half of a population. She is bested by a stray grenade and rescued from an enemy soldier by 2014 Gamora, who extends a helping hand only to be smacked away. Perturbed by being helped, Nebula demands an explanation, only for her to relay that Thanos has found the Power Stone. Stepping ahead of Gamora, Nebula bows before Thanos promising to return with the Stone when suddenly her Synaptic Drive glitches and a hologram of War Machine appears before the gathering. Thanos, curious, orders his Nebula to be examined by Ebony Maw on his ship.
Entering the temple, Nebula and War Machine observed 2014's Star-Lord dancing to his Walkman, commenting on him being an idiot. War Machine punched Star-Lord as Nebula looted his thief tools to enter the shrine. War Machine, having seen too many movies, was hesitant to enter, urging Nebula be wary of traps, only for her to casually walk in. She reached in the pedestal, bypassing the incineration field and retrieving the Orb. As War Machine witnesses her cyborg hand at its base mechanics, she remarks how she did not used to be like how she is now; a sentiment War Machine shares, following the airport battle in Germany with the Avengers Civil War. Synchronizing their Quantum Bands, War Machine activated his return beacon but Nebula has a glitch.
Connecting to the network, Future Nebula sees Maw examining 2014 Nebula's memory network, where he finds a duplicate connection. With their shared memories, Thanos saw his future and learned he succeeds at his quest. Maw, while joyous for his master, prepares to kill Nebula for her future betrayal. Thanos, however, knows his daughter at this time is loyal and plans to use her for gaining a victory. Awakening from her memory link, Nebula 2023 rushes to warn Hawkeye and Black Widow that 2014 Thanos is aware of their plans. It is as she is hailing them that Sanctuary II descends on Morag and tracks her shuttle.
- "You disgust me. But that doesn't mean that you're useless."
- ―Past Nebula to her future self
As Nebula is captured and interrogated by her 2014 self, the younger takes offense to her future self for betraying Thanos' goals. But as the future Nebula tries to talk sense to 2014 Gamora, she is knocked down by her younger self. Threatening with a knife, instead of killing or torturing her future incarnation, 2014 Nebula instead removes superficial armor plating to equip to herself, and hands Thanos the Pym Particle device to transport to the future. With her outward appearance identical to her future self, equipped with the Avengers suit, acting as a tether 2014 Nebula activates the beacon to jump to 2023. But as the Avengers were reeling from the revelation that Natasha had to sacrifice herself for the Soul Stone, the past Nebula had to make herself scarce under a pretext of letting them grieve. As the Avengers come to terms, Stark, Banner, and Rocket construct their own Infinity Gauntlet, and as they debate who should use it, 2014 Nebula activates the Time Jump platform to summon Sanctuary II, but at this exact moment, Bruce Banner uses the Stark Gauntlet to undo the Snap.
Upon seeing the destruction Thanos lays down to claim the Infinity Gauntlet, 2014 Gamora goes to 2023 Nebula, asking her about the future. Demanding an answer, Gamora receives an honest and heartfelt truth: Nebula had tried to kill her and her soon-to-be friends repeatedly, but it was Gamora's genuine sisterly love and openness to reconcile that allowed Nebula in the future to become someone better, allowing the two to finally be like real sisters. Processing the information, 2014 Gamora extends her hand to the future Nebula, who accepts the help her younger self would reject in hubris.
After the New Avengers Facility is destroyed, 2014 Nebula is ordered to find the fully assembled Infinity Gauntlet while Thanos waits for battle. She descends under the ruined facility and finds a fatigued Clint Barton who had just eluded and killed Outriders who were chasing him. Clint, unaware of who she really is, hands her the fully ready Gauntlet. As 2014 Nebula contacts Thanos, Clint realizes he was duped, but she holds a blaster pistol on him. It was by the timely arrival of 2014 Gamora and 2023 Nebula does Clint get into a defensive posture. As Nebula attempts to urge her younger self to lay down her arms, noting the shared memory network, past Nebula cannot fathom such a future with her present-tense mindset. 2014 Gamora stands down to show good faith, and appeal to her sister, but it is all in vain as 2014 Nebula aims to shoot her. In reflex, 2023 Nebula shoots her past incarnation through the cardiac region, killing her.
After rescuing Hawkeye and killing her past self, Nebula nonchalantly confirmed to and Gamora from 2014 that she fell in love with Star-Lord, the man she kneed in the groin twice after saving him from a Sakaaran soldier, in the future. Nebula then joined other heroes in an unsuccessful attempt to return the Infinity Stones to the past before Thanos could get to them.
Ultimately surviving the battle, Nebula fought alongside the Guardians of the Galaxy and many of their allies as they solemnly mourned the loss of Tony Stark at his lakeside cabin. She then rejoins the Guardians in the Benatar as Star-Lord reasserts his role as the leader of the team, suggesting that he and Thor fight for that position.
Like Gamora, Nebula greatly despised her father, Thanos, for torturing her and turning her into a cybernetic assassin. However, despite this, she always tried, often in vain, to prove her worth to her father. Nebula lost any desire to do this after betraying Thanos, though, and has since vowed to kill her adopted father, now free to express her hatred for him. Her hatred for Thanos eclipsed any fear she had of him, as she went as far as to infiltrate the heavily guarded Sanctuary II just to try to kill Thanos, which failed miserably and she was captured and tortured badly by Thanos. This likely compounded her hatred for him even further and Nebula later immediately became furious and brutally attacked him unhesitatingly when he coldly told her he considered killing her would have been a "waste of parts". However, like Gamora, it would appear that as Thanos was the only parental figure she knew for the majority of her life, Nebula deep down did have some sentiment towards him, as she didn't look glad when Thor decapitated Thanos and even cried a bit.
Nebula had very little loyalty to a cause as she quickly betrayed Thanos once Ronan the Accuser harnessed the power of the Power Stone, believing he could kill Thanos as he declared to do so. However, when the Battle of Xandar became too intense for her liking, she quickly abandoned Ronan to escape, despite her sister's pleas for her to help the Guardians of the Galaxy, becoming an independent criminal. Nebula is also known to be highly sadistic, even being referred to as the biggest sadist in the galaxy by Taserface and she seems to take pride in her sadistic killing of her targets, with her proudly telling Gamora that "The screams of my victims can be heard through the galaxy", which Gamora replied in stride by saying that it was because Nebula often took a long time to kill her foes because she tortured them first. Unlike her sister who seeks to atone for her past crimes, even after she had redeemed herself, Nebula shows no visible signs of regret for her own crimes and she was perfectly willing to murder anyone tasked to her and anyone who stood in her own way. However, she did say that she would help the universe by killing Thanos, indicating that after her reconciliation with Gamora, she not only saw Thanos's death as vengeance but also to save other children from suffering at his hands.
Although she and Gamora grew to genuinely care for each other and develop a strong bond, ever since Thanos considered Gamora his favored children and Gamora's repeated victories over her, which caused her to be painfully cybernetically altered, Nebula had grown to resent Gamora, both for never letting her win and for being Thanos' favored daughter. However, she does still like and care for her to an extent, as Nebula said she disliked and hated her the least out of all the other children of Thanos and she did not have the heart to let her be captured by Thanos and Ronan, as she knew that either Ronan or Thanos would torture her first before killing her, causing her to genuinely believe that when she destroyed her ship and left her to die in space that she was doing Gamora a favor. However, while she ruthlessly tried to kill her sister when they fought in Ego, even dishonorably attacking Gamora despite Gamora saving her, when Nebula finally had the chance to kill her sister, she could not bring herself to do so and although she first revealed that she finally beat Gamora, Gamora's lack of care on it and admonishing her for still continuing their rivalry caused her to furiously reveal why she hated her and this caused them to warm up with each other, with Nebula finally forgiving Gamora, even joining forces with the Guardians of the Galaxy and saving her. When Nebula departed from their company, she did so on equal terms, sharing a hug with her sister before she left.
Years later, Nebula's relationship with Gamora and the Guardians appears to have improved considerably, as she trusted the Guardians enough to tell them to meet her on Titan so they can fight Thanos. Her care for Gamora was most notably shown when she furiously dueled with Thanos, she angrily asked where Gamora was. Upon realizing that Thanos had sacrificed Gamora, Nebula was visibly distraught as she implied it and seemed to show some sympathy towards Star-Lord, Gamora's boyfriend, showing more emotional sensitivity, as rather than bluntly telling him Gamora had died, she never actually openly said it and looked almost in tears when Star-Lord, in denial of Gamora's death, angrily asked Thanos to tell him that she was lying. She showed genuine care for the Guardians, looking visibly distraught as they ceased to exist. Nebula also bonds with Tony Stark as they fix a ship and leave Titan, with her using her technology to treat Tony's wounds before they infect, and Tony acknowledging in a message intended for Pepper Potts that she would like the "only slightly sadistic" cyborg. She also performed very affectionate acts for Tony, the main ones being when she wrapped a blanket around Tony and positioned him on a chair instead of on the cold floor and also offering food to Tony demonstrating how far she's come from who she once was.
Nebula's growth was most displayed when she confronted her past self, hoping to sway her to join their cause by telling her of what she becomes in the future, only resorting to lethal force when she felt that there was no other choice. She also grew to be rather sentimental, solemnly recounting to the past Gamora of how they grew as sisters in the future. She has even displayed a subtle lightheartedness and a knack for dark humor, engaging in macabre but playful banter with her comrades in the Guardians upon reuniting with them.
Powers and Abilities
Luphomoid Physiology and Cybernetic Enhancements: Nebula possesses natural higher physical capabilities beyond any human being, which are further enhanced by her physiological enhancements.
- Superhuman Strength: Nebula has higher levels of superhuman strength, much greater than that of a human being. She managed to throw a pilot of an M-ship out of the vehicle in mid-air with ease and managed to temporarily overpower Gamora after the two of them survived an explosion. She was also able to easily snap the neck of a Chitauri soldier with one arm, even while weakened due to prolonged torture at Thanos' hands. Nebula was even able to slightly stagger Thanos with a punch and several baton strikes, although Thanos soon easily overtook and send her flying with a punch.
- Superhuman Durability: Nebula can easily withstand multiple injuries, especially impact trauma, such as falls from great heights. While her body was contorted by being blasted with Drax the Destroyer's cannon at point blank range, she was otherwise unharmed and her cybernetic implants twisted her body back into place. She managed to jump onto an M-ship from several stories without withstanding injuries and survived to be inside an exploding ship before landing on her feet several stories down unharmed. When plugging her mechanical arm into the ship to power the ship's energy beams, she was electrocuted and experienced great pain, but otherwise survived. She even managed to survive a powerful blow from Thanos and later a shockwave from the Infinity Gauntlet.
- Superhuman Agility: Nebula has agility and coordination greater than that of a human being, allowing her to easily keep up with Gamora in a fight and dodge her sister's attacks.
- Regenerative Healing Factor: Nebula's extensive cybernetic implants allow her to quickly heal from otherwise near-fatal injuries, such as when her body was crushed and mangled when withstanding a direct blow from Drax's cannon. Due to her implants, she was able to reshape her body back to its original form by snapping her arms and jaw back into their normal place. Nebula was able to reshape her body after the impact of an exploding M-ship.
- Light Emission: Due to her extensive cybernetic visual prosthesis, Nebula is able to emit vast amounts of light energy from her eyes. This enables her to see within places of low light.
- Image Projection: Nebula’s built-in synaptic drive and bionic visual enhancements give her the capability of replaying past memories in the form of light projections. This was shown when Thanos accessed the memory file of 2023 Nebula through her past self, as the two were mentally linked.
- Concussive Energy Blast Generation: Nebula’s cybernetic arm allows her to fire concussive electroshock charges from her hand towards her enemies or over a specific target area.
- "I am every inch the warrior you are. The screams of my victims fill every field."
- ―Nebula to Gamora
- Master Assassin: Ever since she was a child, Nebula has trained extensively as an assassin under Thanos. She trained with Gamora throughout her childhood, but Nebula stated that she was not as skilled as her sister. Despite that, Nebula was skilled enough that even Thanos commented Nebula almost succeeded in killing him after sneaking into his spaceship.
- Expert Combatant: As a highly trained assassin of Thanos, Nebula is accomplished in armed and unarmed combat. Nebula's skill in combat allowed her to compete with "the deadliest woman in the galaxy," Gamora, for a prolonged amount of time and even managed to defeat her when both were wounded after escaping an explosion, although it should be noted that Gamora was weakened more than Nebula was due to Nebula's more extensive cybernetics and the fact that Gamora had not been fighting to kill, but was trying to reason with Nebula; thus, she was holding back. Her most impressive display of skill was seen when she briefly fought Thanos one-on-one; although she was eventually no match for her far stronger and more experienced father, Nebula was still able to fare better than Drax the Destroyer as well as Doctor Strange, able to briefly pressure and land two blows on Thanos, whereas Drax and Strange had difficulty fighting Thanos even with a webbed cotton hampering Thanos's eyesight and could not a land single hit in said occasion, although Thanos was briefly distracted by her mentions of Gamora and soon easily knocked her aside.
- Staff Mastery: Nebula is highly skilled in using sticks and staffs, her retractable electric batons being her preferred weapon. Using her staff, she was able to contend with Gamora using her sword and even managed to disarm her. Later, she was able to briefly force Thanos to the defensive and land some blows until she was defeated easily.
- Expert Pilot: Nebula is a highly trained pilot, with Gamora acknowledging her as being better and more knowledgeable at piloting than her, capable of easily flying a Necrocraft and an M-ship with great efficiency. During the Skirmish on Knowhere, Nebula was able to maneuver around Gamora's mining pod with ease and eventually shoot her ship down.
- Expert Marksman: Nebula is proficient in sharpshooting. During the Attack on Berhert, Nebula was able to accurately shoot off Yondu Udonta's Yaka Arrow Controller before incapacitating Rocket Raccoon.
- Gifted Intellect: Due to her synaptic drive, Nebula possesses the ability to quickly process vast amounts of information. Nebula also possesses vast knowledge on how time travel works, displayed by her notes on how changing the past does not affect one's future.
- Advanced Tech Suit: This suit was designed in order to time travel through the Quantum Realm safely. It is a white, red and black suit that materialize around the wearer's regular clothes, managing to be summoned when time travel is required again, and disappear when no longer in use. It has size-shifting adaptability down to subatomic levels and a wrist gadget that allows for displacement through time and space.
In her early years under Thanos' wing, Nebula received various upgrades that allowed her to gain extensive cybernetic properties and body features.
- Cybernetic Arm: Nebula possesses a cybernetic metal arm after her escape from a Laser Thorn Energy Net within the Cloud Tombs of Praxius. Nebula's arm contains many internal components such as a grappling hook and contact whiplash that she used when infiltrating Praxius IX, it is also capable of acting as a generator for electricity as it was used to power the broken down Ravagers ship her and Yondu Udonta were on to eliminate the multiple Sovereign ships. Her hand is designed to imitate the appearance of flesh. but it is capable of hacking into computer systems, demonstarted by a time travelled version of Nebula from 2014. However, after losing her left hand in Guardians of the Galaxy, Nebula replaces it with another cybernetic hand which does not imitate the appearance of flesh.
- Tempersteel Claws: Nebula possesses two sets of retractable claws, one in each hand, that she can activate to grip onto surfaces to assist her when she is climbing.
- Regeneration Implant: Nebula possesses a regeneration implant that is situated within her body. This implant allows her to rapidly heal from near-fatal injuries and wounds as well as enabling her to reshape her body back to it's original form.
- Cybernetic Communicator: Nebula has a cybernetic message communicator planted in her brain, which she used to alert the Sakaarans that Gamora had the Orb, and to directly confront her shortly thereafter. Nebula also used to it to alert Thanos that she was in possession of the Nano Gauntlet during the Attack on the New Avengers Facility.
- Visual Prosthesis: During Nebula's upbringing with Thanos, her father had pulled her eye from her head as a consequence for losing a battle against Gamora. Thanos replaced her left eye with a bionic one, this bionic eye allows her to create projections of a specific event.
- Synaptic Drive: One of Nebula’s cybernetics includes a neuro-synaptic implant located on the side of her head and also forms part of her brain. It is capable of recording memories and replaying memory files from past events. A glitch can occur if Synaptic Drives from different timelines are located in the same time, malfunctioning and granting the drives access to the records of the other.
- Electroshock Batons: Nebula's weapon of choice are baton-like electroshock weapons which can be combined to form a longer electroshock staff that can generate powerful amounts of electrical energy. It could also be thrown and return magnetically to her cybernetic arm, demonstrated by her brief skirmish with Thanos.
- Electric Blaster: Nebula’s alternate weapon is a blaster which can fire blasts of electricity to electrocute and stun its targets, knocking them unconscious. She used it on Rocket Raccoon and Yondu Udonta to escape Berhert.
- Godslayer: During their skirmish on Ego the Living Planet, Nebula took Gamora's sword Godslayer and attempted to kill her sister with it. However, she chose not to.
- Nebula's Energy Dagger: During the Kidnapping of Nebula, 2014 Nebula possessed a dagger that was able to release blue light energy and used it to remove the orange headpiece from the face of her future self.
- Dark Aster: During her time working with Ronan the Accuser, Nebula was a passenger on his ship. She and everyone else on the ship used it for transportation during Ronan's campaign for vengeance. She later abandoned the ship during the Battle of Xandar.
- M-ship: After being defeated in combat by Gamora during the Battle of Xandar, Nebula was left hanging hundreds of feet above Xandar's surface, with her hand trapped onto a spike on the outside of the Dark Aster. Gamora tried to reason with Nebula but Nebula refused and cut off her cybernetic hand. Instead of falling from the sky to her death, she landed on top of a Ravager's M-ship. Nebula then threw the pilot out and took control of the ship before flying it far away from the battle. She would later use another M-ship to fly to Ego to try to kill Gamora, she crashed the ship during her fight with Gamora.
- Milano: Nebula was held prisoner on the Milano after being captured by the Guardians of the Galaxy before it crashed on Berhert.
- Sanctuary II: Nebula snuck aboard this ship to kill Thanos. She nearly succeeded, but failed and was captured. When Thanos captured Gamora, he brought her to Nebula to force her to reveal the location of the Soul Stone. Thanos started to torture Nebula and Gamora told Thanos where he could find the stone to stop her sister's suffering. After Thanos and Gamora left, Nebula escaped after killing a Chitauri henchman and stealing a Necrocraft.
- Necrocraft: After escaping captivity on the Sanctuary II, Nebula stole a Necrocraft and used it to go to Titan and crashed the ship onto Thanos in an attempt to kill him, interrupting his battle with the Avengers and Guardians, although Thanos was uninjured.
- Benatar: Following the battle of Titan, Nebula and Iron Man fixed Star-Lord's ship and left the planet. It would break down after 24 days of travel, but eventually, they were rescued in deep space by Captain Marvel, who delivered them to Earth. Nebula would also ride the Benatar to take part in the Ambush on Thanos.
|Appearances for Nebula|
In chronological order:
In an alternate timeline:
- In the comics, Nebula is a space pirate and mercenary who claims to be Thanos' granddaughter. Her appearance in the movies seems to be based more on her second incarnation from the comics.
Behind the Scenes
- Gal Gadot revealed she was up for the role of Nebula.
- In Guardians of the Galaxy, Karen Gillan shaved her head to play Nebula (the hair, in turn, was made into a wig, which Gillan wore in the TV show Selfie). In later appearances, her hair was only shortened, with the reminder lifted into a bun which was hidden by the prosthetics that make Nebula's facial make-up. 
- Nebula's make-up, which includes a glued together five-piece prosthetic in the head and contact lenses, took approximately four hours and 15 minutes to apply and another 30 minutes to remove in Guardians of the Galaxy. By Vol. 2, the applying was reduced to a two and a half hours.
- Karen Gillan stated that "I think she's a really interesting character. What I like to play around with is how jealous she is. She's Gamora's sister, and there's a lot of sibling rivalry. That's the most interesting aspect to me because jealousy can consume you and turn you bitter, and ugly. And she's a total sadist, so that's fun too."
- Karen Gillan also said, "She is very sadistic and evil, but I like to think for a very valid reason."
- Monique Ganderton, Olivia Jackson, Kelly Richardson, Amy Lynn Tuttle, Shauna Galligan, Joanna Bennett and Jess Durham were stunt doubles for Karen Gillan in the role of Nebula.
- Collette Von Tora, Caileigh Scott and Tracie Garrison were stand-ins for Karen Gillan in the role of Nebula.
- ↑ Karen Gillan on the Future of Nebula Post-‘Avengers: Endgame’ and James Gunn’s Return to ‘Guardians’
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Guardians of the Galaxy Prelude
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Guardians of the Galaxy
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 Avengers: Infinity War
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 Avengers: Endgame
- ↑ Before Landing WONDER WOMAN, Was Gal Gadot Up For A Role In GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY?
- ↑ Marvel Made Karen Gillan a Wig of Her Own Hair That She'll Wear on 'Selfie'
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 Nebula & Drax's Makeup Drastically Improved For Guardians of the Galaxy 2
- ↑ The Most Complex Makeup In ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy’ Took More Than 4 Hours And A Shaved Head
- ↑ Gillan Discusses “Guardians of the Galaxy’s” Nebula, Ronan’s Intimidation Factor
- ↑ IAR VIDEO: DIRECTOR JAMES GUNN AND KAREN GILLAN TALK 'GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY'
|Guardians of the Galaxy|