Secret Invasion: The Infiltration (2007-2008) Reading Order

The CIVIL WAR has spilt the costumed heroes of America into two factions: those who’ll sign the Superhuman Registration Act and those who won’t. Even the Avengers are split in two with the SHRA-approved Mighty Avengers led by Ms Marvel & Iron Man hunting Luke Cage‘s outlaw New Avengers. But, on a mission in Japan, Cage’s squad are about to uncover a secret that’ll throw the super-human community into further disarray.

Be warned…

Related Events: While these stories mostly take place in isolation and are contained in each respective title without crossing over, you’ll see the bigger picture developing if you read them all together.

Must Reads: Story arcs marked with a ✔are must-read stories from this time period, along with any key related stories and often-forgotten tales that are worth a read.

Anthology Issues: When an issue contains multiple stories, the relevant story is denoted with square brackets. For example, [2/5] refers to the second story of the five stories in that issue, so you don’t need to read the other four. 

Previous events that directly impact this story:

Want to keep it simple? Here’s the chronological reading order without story descriptions, or spoilers:

  • New Avengers #31 (tie-in)
  • New Avengers #32 (tie-in)
  • Mighty Avengers #7
  •      Avengers: The Initiative Annual #1 [5/5]
  • New Avengers #38-39
  • Captain Marvel #1-3 (tie-in)
  •      Young Avengers Presents #2 (tie-in)
  •      Ms Marvel #24 (tie-in)
  •      Ms Marvel #25-27
  • Captain Marvel #4-5
  • New Avengers: Illuminati #5

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Must ReadsTitle, Issue Number & Synopsis
New Avengers #31 (tie-in)
Luke Cage’s New Avengers have headed to Japan to free estranged Avenger Echo from the Hand‘s control (also part of THE INITIATIVE). When Doctor Strange succeeds, Echo turns her attention to the ­­­’s leader, Elektra, and forces a sword through her stomach. The Avengers witness Elektra’s corpse take on the form of an alien shapeshifter… a Skrull!
New Avengers #32 (tie-in)
As the team fly home from Japan, Wolverine suggests that any one of them could be a Skrull. Spider-Woman tries to convince the group to take the Skrull Elektra’s body to Tony Stark when an electromagnetic pulse hits and the jet makes a crash landing. Wolverine comes to first only for Spider-Woman uses her sting to knock him back out, then leave with the Skrull corpse…
Mighty Avengers #7
Spider-Woman takes the Skrull corpse to Tony Stark at Avengers Tower. Unsure of how to react, Tony decides to keep this little revelation a secret between himself and Spider-Woman, who he asks to join his Mighty Avengers without Ms Marvel‘s consent. The EMP that caused the New Avengers’ jet to crash also causes a satellite in Earth’s orbit to launch a projectile containing Symbiotes at New York, infecting citizens (continuing in VENOM BOMB).
Avengers: The Initiative Annual #1 [5/5]
Philadelphia’s 50-State Initiative team, the Liberteens, successfully take down Flag-Smasher when he tries to destroy the Liberty Bell. Later, Revolutionary reports back to Camp Hammond and it turns out the little geek is a Skrull. Not only that, but his high-ranking contact at Camp Hammond is also a Skrull! Turns out there’s a Skrull in all fifty teams of the 50-State Initiative. So who else out there has been replaced by a Skrull? And who’s really running the Initiative?
New Avengers #38
Paranoia over the Skrull infiltration and attacks on Doctor Strange’s house by the Hood leave Jessica Jones no choice but to take her and Luke’s daughter to Avengers Tower. This stings Cage, especially as he believes Tony Stark’s a Skrull. The couple argue outside the tower, until Ms Marvel warns Cage off.

Must ReadsTitle, Issue Number & Synopsis
New Avengers #39
Wolverine tells Echo that half the reason he’s on the team is to look out for her, which he continues to do when she goes roof-hopping and runs into a Skrull impersonating Daredevil. Wolvey steps in and gets crispy fried saving her life, but can’t stop the Skrull from escaping. Later, Ronin (Clint Barton) interrupts Echo’s meditation and the two of them sleep together…
Captain Marvel #1 (tie-in)
Everyone seems to have forgotten that the long-dead Kree superhero Captain Marvel returned during CIVIL WAR. Not that anyone’s seen him since. Turns out Mar-Vell‘s been hanging out in Paris, staring at a painting, completely unaware that a cult has started up in his name. Iron Man calls in SHIELD agent Heather Sante to track him down. Two days, later, Captain Marvel makes a very public return…
Captain Marvel #2 (tie-in)
Ms Marvel catches up with Marv and they both admit their old feelings for each other still exist, but the moment is interrupted by a rampaging Cobalt Man. Later, Marv meets Iron Man on the SHIELD Helicarrier where Kree troops show up, ordering their deaths…
Captain Marvel #3 (tie-in)
Agent Sante investigates the Brotherhood of Hala – the cult that’s risen up around Mar-Vell’s apparent resurrection – only to find it’s infested with Skrulls.
Young Avengers Presents #2 (tie-in)
Hulkling of the Young Avengers ignores his teammates’ advice and gets Captain Marvel’s attention, awkwardly revealing he’s the result of Mar-Vell’s bedroom fandango with the Skrull princess Anelle. After the initial shock, Mar-Vell promises he’ll see Hulkling again before he returns to his own time.
Ms Marvel #24 (tie-in)
With her Binary powers restored by the alien Cru, Ms Marvel battles a Brood infestation on Monster Island alongside Wonder Man and her Operation: Lightning Storm team. Cru congratulates Ms Marvel on her victory – won by expelling her Binary powers. But the indestructible Brood Queen kills Cru, prompting Ms Marvel to fly her into space and put a bomb in her mouth. Three days later, Iron Man informs Operation: Lighting Storm’s Agent Sum that Ms Marvel appears to be a Skrull…
Ms Marvel #25
Ms Marvel follows an AIM truck containing an all-new Super-Skrull whose mission is to kill her love-interest, William Wagner. Ms Marvel finds Wagner dead in his apartment when Agent Sum bursts in to find her stood over her dead body…
Ms Marvel #26
The full force of Operation: Lightning Storm – including Machine Man and Sleepwalker – hunt Ms Marvel. Meanwhile, a Skrull ‘Ms Marvel’ tries to convince Agent Sum that she’s the real deal. After a bunch of shape-shifting switches, the ‘Ms Marvel’ Skrull is revealed and contained. And the real Ms Marvel learns William Wagner was a Kree…

Must ReadsTitle, Issue Number & Synopsis
Ms Marvel #27
The ‘Ms Marvel’ Skrull utters the words “he loves you” and blows herself and Lightning Storm’s Mini-Carrier to pieces. A few weeks later (immediately before SECRET INVASION), Ms Marvel sleeps with Wonder Man to make herself feel better.
Captain Marvel #4
Having accused Ms Marvel of being a Skrull, only to be accused of the same by Cyclone, Mar-Vell heads to the North Pole to freak out. Later, he convinces the Brotherhood of Hala to do some charitable work in the Sudan, but their leader, Julia Starr, is killed by guerrilla soldiers. Ms Marvel uses the Nega-Bands to teleport Captain Marvel to the Negative Zone
Captain Marvel #5
Mar-Vell escapes the Negative Zone through a portal back to Earth which jolts his memories, making him realise he’s a Skrull called Khn’nr! Agent Sante is there to arrest him, but he convinces her to let him continue to do good work as Captain Marvel.
New Avengers: Illuminati #5
Tony Stark summons the Illuminati and hits them with the revelation of the Skrull infiltration. The argument over whether or not there even is an impending invasion is interrupted when the normally-silent Black Bolt is revealed as a Super-Skrull. Namor the Sub-Mariner kills Skrull Black Bolt, only for more Super-Skrulls to attack! Iron Man connects to a local power station and blows the Skrulls up. Unable to trust each other anymore, the Illuminati go their separate ways. The Earth just might be doomed, after all…

Must ReadsIssue & FalloutEvent / Crossover
Mighty Avengers #4
Ultron is the cause of the EMP that hits the New Avengers’ jet.

Mighty Avengers #8-11
Doctor Doom is revealed to be behind the ‘Venom Bomb’ that was accidentally released into New York.
Annihilation: Conquest #1
Iron Man is unable to contact the Kree due to their home world, Hala, being taken over by the Phalanx.

Annihilation: Conquest #6
The bubble around Hala is destroyed.
Secret Invasion: Inhumans #1
Iron Man hands the body of the Skrull Black Bolt to Medusa of the Inhumans; the real Black Bolt’s whereabouts is revealed.

Secret Invasion #1
The Skrulls begin their invasion; the Skrull at Camp Hammond is revealed to be ‘Hank Pym’; ‘Edwin Jarvis’ is revealed to be a Skrull; Tony Stark finally begins the autopsy on Skrull Elektra; more Super-Skrulls invade Earth.

New Avengers #40
‘Spider-Woman’ revealed to be a Skrull; how the real Spider-Woman was replaced by a Skrull is revealed.

Secret Invasion #3
‘Spider-Woman’ reveals her true Skrull identity to Tony Stark.

Mighty Avengers #16
How the real Elektra was replaced by a Skrull is revealed.

Secret Invasion #6
‘Captain Marvel’ is killed defending Earth from the Skrull invasion.

Avengers: The Initiative #18
Revolutionary is killed by Hope.

Secret Invasion #8
The outcome of the Skrull invasion is revealed; the real Elektra returns; Ronin is reunited with his ex-wife, Mockingbird, immediately forgetting about his burgeoning relationship with Echo.

New Avengers #47
Skrull ‘Jarvis’ kidnaps baby Danielle Cage.
New Avengers #48
Echo quietly leaves the Avengers.

Avengers: The Initiative #20
The real Revolutionary first appears .
Secret Invasion: Dark Reign #1
Namor joins a villain-version of the Illuminati called the Cabal.


New Avengers #49
Luke Cage rescues Danielle with Norman Osborn‘s help, becoming indebted to him.

Punisher #5
The real Cyclone is resurrected.

New Avengers #51-54
Doctor Strange officially loses the title of Sorcerer Supreme to Brother Voodoo.
Spider-Man and the Fantastic Four #4
A retroactive story reveals that Kristoff Vernard released the Venom Bomb, setting Doctor Doom up for a fall so he could reclaim the Latverian throne.
Ms Marvel #48-50
Another Captain Marvel (revealed to be a Skrull) attacks the Church of Hala.
Chaos War: Dead Avengers #1-3
The original Captain Marvel is briefly resurrected.
Secret Avengers #26-28
The Kree resurrect the real Captain Marvel for a short time in order to defend the Phoenix Force from the Avenger.
Captain Marvel #1
Ms Marvel (Carol Danvers) continues up Mar-Vell’s legacy when she becomes the new Captain Marvel.
New Avengers #34
Doctor Strange reclaims the title and abilities of Sorcerer Supreme.
New Avengers #1
Namor officially returns to the Illuminati.

See how this story fits into the wider Marvel Universe continuity with these reading orders:

Notable collected editions that cover Secret Invasion: Infiltration…

Collected Edition TitleIncludes…
Secret Invasion by Brian Michael Bendis OmnibusMighty Avengers #7

New Avengers #31-32, 39

New Avengers: The Illuminati
Secret Invasion: The InfiltrationAvengers: The Initiative Annual #1

Mighty Avengers #7, New Avengers #31-32, 38-39

New Avengers: Illuminati #5
Secret Invasion: Rise of the SkrullsAvengers: The Initiative Annual #1

Captain Marvel #1-5

Ms Marvel #25-27
New Avengers by Brian Michael Bendis: The Complete Collection vol.3New Avengers #31-32

New Avengers: Illuminati #5
New Avengers vol.3 HC

New Avengers vol.6: Revolution New Avengers Omnibus vol.1
New Avengers #31
New Avengers vol.4 HC

New Avengers vol.7: The Trust
New Avengers #32

New Avengers: Illuminati #5

Collected Editions TitleIncludes…
New Avengers vol.5 HC

New Avengers vol.8: Secret Invasion, Book 1

New Avengers by Brian Michael Bendis: The Complete Collection vol.4
New Avengers #38-39
Jessica Jones: AvengerNew Avengers #38
Mighty Avengers: Assemble

Mighty Avengers vol.2: Venom Bomb

Mighty Avengers by Brian Michael Bendis: The Complete Collection
Mighty Avengers #7
Avengers: The Initiative vol.2: Killed in Action

Avengers: The Initiative – The Complete Collection vol.1
Avengers: The Initiative Annual #1[5/5]
Secret Invasion: Captain MarvelCaptain Marvel #1-5
Young Avengers PresentsYoung Avengers Presents #3
Captain Marvel: Carol Danvers – The Ms Marvel Years vol.2

Captain Marvel/Ms Marvel – Secret Invasion: The Infiltration

Ms Marvel vol.5: Secret Invasion
Ms Marvel #25-27
New Avengers: IlluminatiNew Avengers: Illuminati #5

Reading Order ©OmniverseComicsGuide 2023

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