Marvel has finally explained the resurrection of Wolverine and his return to the Marvel Universe.
SPOILERS for Marvel’s Return of Wolverine #5 ahead:
Wolverine had died in October 2014 by the end of Marvel’s Death of Wolverine. This superhero had then returned in September 2017 in Marvel Legacy #1 and had made an appearance in time to claim the Space Stone way before Loki could actually get it.
Ever since Logan has made appearances in many of the post-credits scenes in Marvel’s comic books. He has even travelled the world before having dropped the Space Stone off at a safe house for Black Widow to find it.
At the very same time, the grave-robbers had taken Wolverine’s body. The X-Men, Logan’s friends from the Avengers, and a few other superheroes started investigated and had discovered that Logan was being used for black ops.
These two stories had seemed very contradictory, but Wolverine: Infinity Watch #1 now explains how they all make sense. This version is that there have been two Wolverines operating in the Marvel Universe at the very same time.
The Wolverine from the major Marvel Universe, who had died in the year, 2014, was the one who had been resurrected by Persephone in Return of Wolverine and he frees himself from Persphone in the issue, Return of Wolverine #5 and also returns to Xavier’s School.
At least, he thought he was actually returning to Xavier’s School. This school was just an illusion created by Loki, and the real school is in ruins and shambles after the events of Uncanny X-Men’s “Disassembled” story.
Loki is actually as confused by Wolverine is. A second Wolverine, who is possessed by the Phoenix Force, then reveals himself to Loki and also the first Wolverine. This is “Old Man Phoenix”, and he explains that he had been the one who took the stone and gave it to Black Widow, and this was Loki’s request.
This is where Wolverine’s return actually intersects with Infinity Wars. In this story, Gamora collects all the Infinity Stones, and she becomes Requiem, and also kills Thanos. Old Man Phoenix explains this is not how things had happened the very first time around.
It was Loki who had collected the Stones, and had become Requiem, and killed Thanos. Loki then used these stones to pass through the Quarry of Creation and had gained access to a primordial realm where the Celestials dwell. He had seen something on the other side which had really scared him.
After having returned, he had then sought out Old Man Phoenix and also asked him to travel back in time for preventing him from crossing over in the first place.
By taking the Space Stone, Old Man Phoenix had altered the timeline and instead of Loki collecting all the Stones, Gamora did. With the task complete, Old Man Phoenix then heads back to his timeline to die. This leads to a battle between Thor and Old Man Phoenix as seen in all the recent issues of Thor.
This is how Marvel makes sense out of the long, path through Wolverine’s return. Now there is just one Wolverine left in the Marvel Universe and he rejoins Cyclops as the last X-Men standing in Uncanny X-Men #11.
Return of Wolverine #5 and Wolverine: Infinity Watch #1 are both on sale now.