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Secret Invasion Reading Order Checklist

Secret Invasion Reading Order Checklist

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Secret Invasion was a 2008 comic book event, which saw the slow-building invasion of the shape-shifting Skrulls come to fruition. It seeded a sense of distrust in the superhero community, which was still feeling the effects of Civil War, and seeded a sense of paranoia. Who can you trust if anyone could be anyone could be a Skrull?

With Secret Invasion making its way to Disney Plus, there’s renewed interest in the comic book story. However, Marvel’s Secret Invasion can look rather intimidating to read on first glance, with more than 100 issues involved. Luckily, the Secret Invasion Reading Order Checklist is here to help make sense of everything.

This reading order checklist lists everything you need read for the main event, as well as suggestions for comics leading into it, what to read next, the trade paperbacks collections, and much more.

Happy reading!

Table of contents:

Do I Need To Read All Of The Tie-Ins?

Short answer: No.

Longer Answer: As long as you read the core Secret Invasion story told through issues #1-8 (bolded in the reading order list) then it’s totally up to you as to which tie-ins you read. The tie-ins are not essential in order to understand what is going on in the main story but instead give you the option to expand it the way you want to.

Some tie into the story more than others, such as New Avengers, while others are not as critical, such as Guardians of the Galaxy.

If you don’t want to read everything, my advice is to read the ones that appeal to you the most. You can base this off any of the following:

  • Plot elements
  • Characters involved
  • Artists or writers involved
  • Your budget
New Avengers #27 cover by Lenil Francis Yu.
New Avengers #27 cover by Lenil Francis Yu.

Before Secret Invasion

If you’re keen, these are comics that build up to Secret Invasion. Some of the groundwork is laid out for readers and we get our first clues of the Skrull invasion.

Fantastic Four (1961 series) #2

Note: First appearance of the Skrulls.

New Avengers: Illuminati #1

New Avengers: Illuminati #2

New Avengers: Illuminati #3

New Avengers: Illuminati #4

Secret Invasion: Prologue #1

Note: Secret Invasion: Prologue #1 is a digital only and exclusive to Marvel Unlimited.

New Avengers (2004 series) #27

New Avengers (2004 series) #28

New Avengers (2004 series) #29

New Avengers (2004 series) #30

New Avengers (2004 series) #31

New Avengers (2004 series) #32

New Avengers (2004 series) #33

New Avengers: Illuminati 35 cover by Jim Cheung. Secret Invasion reading Order.
New Avengers: Illuminati 35 cover by Jim Cheung.

Secret Invasion: The Infiltration And Other Comics Leading Up To Secret Invasion

The following are comics that hint at Secret Invasion and lead directly up to it. For most of these comics, Marvel used the branding Secret Invasion: The Infiltration.

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #7

New Avengers (2004 series) #34

Note: New Avengers (2004 series) #34 is not technically part of Secret Invasion: The Infiltration but is set between Mighty Avengers #7 and #8.

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #8

New Avengers: Illuminati #5

New Avengers (2004 series) #38

Avengers: The Initiative Annual #1

Captain Marvel (2008) #1

Captain Marvel (2008) #2

Captain Marvel (2008) #3

Captain Marvel (2008) #4

Captain Marvel (2008) #5

New Avengers (2004 series) #39

Ms Marvel (2006 series) #25

Ms Marvel (2006 series) #26

Ms Marvel (2006 series) #27

Marvel Spotlight: Secret Invasion Saga #1

Note: Marvel Spotlight: Secret Invasion Saga #1 is a magazine that Marvel released to promote Secret Invasion. It goes through much of the background to get readers excited and up-to-speed on the comic book event.

Secret Invasion #1 cover by Lenil Francis Yu. Secret Invasion Reading Order.
Secret Invasion #1 cover by Lenil Francis Yu.

Secret Invasion Reading Order

Finally, we’re at Secret Invasion proper. Below is the reading order for the full event. Comics in bold are issues in the core story, with everything else being tie-in issues.

Secret Invasion #1

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #1

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #12

New Avengers (2004 series) #40

Secret Invasion #2

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #2

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #13

Captain Britain and MI: 13 #1

Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four #1

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #14

Incredible Hercules #117

New Avengers (2004 series) #41

Secret Invasion: Amazing Spider-Man #1

Secret Invasion: Amazing Spider-Man #2

Secret Invasion #3

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #3

Secret Invasion: Amazing Spider-Man #3

Secret Invasion: Who Do You Trust? #1

Captain Britain and MI: 13 #2

Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four #2

Incredible Hercules #118

Secret Invasion: Runaways/Young Avengers #1

Avengers: The Initiative #14

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #15

Ms. Marvel (2006 series) #28

New Avengers (2004 series) #42

Secret Invasion: Front Line #1

Captain Britain and MI: 13 #3

Secret Invasion: Thor #1

Secret Invasion: Thor #2

Secret Invasion: Thor #3

Secret Invasion #4

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #4

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #16

Incredible Hercules #119

New Warriors (2007 series) #14

Avengers: The Initiative #15

X-Factor (2005 series) #33

She-Hulk (2005 series) #31

New Avengers (2004 series) #43

Thunderbolts #122

Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four #3

Ms. Marvel (2006 series) #29

Black Panther (2005 series) #39

Note: The Black Panther tie-in is part of How to Love Comics’ Black Panther Stories You Should Read list.

Secret Invasion: Front Line #2

Secret Invasion: X-Men #1

Secret Invasion: Inhumans #1

Secret Invasion: Runaways/Young Avengers #2

Secret Invasion #5

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #5

Guardians of the Galaxy (2008 series) #4

Incredible Hercules #120

New Warriors (2007 series) #15

Nova (2007 series) #16

Nova (2007 series) #17

Avengers: The Initiative #16

Iron Man: Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. #33

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #17

X-Factor (2005 series) #34

She-Hulk (2005 series) #32

New Avengers (2004 series) #44

Thunderbolts #123

Secret Invasion: Front Line #3

Deadpool (2008 series) #1

Secret Invasion: X-Men #2

Secret Invasion: Inhumans #2

Secret Invasion: Runaways/Young Avengers #3

Secret Invasion #6

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #6

Ms. Marvel (2006 series) #30

Guardians of the Galaxy (2008 series) #5

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #18

Deadpool (2008 series) #2

Avengers: The Initiative #17

She-Hulk (2005 series) #33

Black Panther (2005 series) #40

New Avengers (2004 series) #45

Thunderbolts #124

Deadpool (2008 series) #3

Secret Invasion: Inhumans #3

Secret Invasion: Front Line #4

Guardians of the Galaxy (2008 series) #6

Punisher: War Journal (2006 series) #24

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #19

Avengers: The Initiative #18

Black Panther (2005 series) #41

Iron Man: Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. #34

Captain Britain and MI: 13 #4

Secret Invasion #7

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #7

Thunderbolts #125

New Avengers (2004 series) #46

Secret Invasion: X-Men #3

Nova (2007 series) #18

Punisher: War Journal (2006 series) #25

Iron Man: Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. #35

Secret Invasion: X-Men #4

Secret Invasion: Inhumans #4

Secret Invasion #8

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #8

New Avengers (2004 series) #47

Note: Takes place during Secret Invasion #8

Secret Invasion: Front Line #5

Note: Takes place during Secret Invasion #8

Avengers: The Initiative (2007) #19

Note: Takes place during Secret Invasion #8

Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #20 (Epilogue)

Secret Invasion: Requiem (Epilogue)

Secret Invasion Aftermath: Beta Ray Bill – The Green of Eden

Secret Invasion: War of Kings

Note: Secret Invasion: War of Kings bridges the gap between Secret Invasion and War of Kings.

Secret Invasion: Dark Reign

Note: Secret Invasion: Dark Reign bridges the gap between Secret Invasion and Dark Reign.

Buy Secret Invasion comics on:

Secret Invasion trade paperback cover by Lenil Francis Yu. Secret Invasion Reading Order.
Secret Invasion trade paperback cover by Lenil Francis Yu.

Secret Invasion Collected Editions

Prefer to read Secret Invasion in trade paperback? Below are all the collected editions that you’ll need to track down.

Note: Many of these trade paperbacks are no longer in print. Your local comic book store may have them in stock, otherwise you may need to track them down on eBay or digitally.

Secret Invasion: The Infiltration
Collects: Fantastic Four #2, New Avengers: Illuminati #1 and 5, New Avengers #31-32 and 38-39, Mighty Avengers #7, Avengers: The Initiative Annual #1

Secret Invasion
Collects: Secret Invasion #1-8

Secret Invasion: Home Invasion
Collects: Secret Invasion: Home Invasion #1-8

Secret Invasion: Front Line
Collects:
Secret Invasion: Front Line #1-5

Secret Invasion: Who Do You Trust?
Collects:
Secret Invasion: Who Do You Trust?, Secret Invasion Saga, Skrulls!, Marvel Spotlight: Secret Invasion

Secret Invasion: Amazing Spider-Man
Collects:
Secret Invasion: The Amazing Spider-Man 1-3, Amazing Spider-Man Annual 2008

Avengers: The Initiative Volume 3: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Avengers: The Initiative #14-19

Black Panther: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Black Panther #39-41

Captain Britain and MI13 Volume 1: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Captain Britain and MI13 #1-6

Captain Marvel: Secret Invasion
Collects: Captain Marvel #1-5, Civil War: The Return

Deadpool Volume 1: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Deadpool #1-5

Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four
Collects:
Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four #1-3, Fantastic Four #300 and #357

Guardians of the Galaxy: Legacy
Collects:
Guardians of the Galaxy #1-6

Incredible Hercules: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Incredible Hercules #116-120

Secret Invasion: Inhumans
Collects:
Secret Invasion: Inhumans #1-4

Mighty Avengers Volume 3: Secret Invasion Book 1
Collects:
Mighty Avengers #12-15

Mighty Avengers Volume 4: Secret Invasion Book 2
Collects:
Mighty Avengers #16-20

Ms Marvel Volume 5: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Ms Marvel #25-30

New Avengers Volume 8: Secret Invasion Book 1
Collects:
New Avengers #38-42

New Avengers Volume 9: Secret Invasion Book 2
Collects:
New Avengers #43-47

Secret Invasion: New Warriors
Collects:
New Warriors #14-20

Punisher War Journal Volume 5: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Punisher War Journal #24-26 and Annual #1

Secret Invasion: Runaways/Young Avengers
Collects:
Secret Invasion: Runaways/Young Avengers #1-3

Secret Invasion: Thor
Collects:
Secret Invasion: Thor #1-3, Thor #142

Thunderbolts Volume 3: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Thunderbolts #122-125, Breaking Point, International Incident, Reason in Madness

Secret Invasion: War Machine
Collects:
Iron Man: Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. #33-35 and Iron Man #144

X-Factor Volume 6: Secret Invasion
Collects:
X-Factor #33-38, She-Hulk #31

Secret Invasion: X-Men
Collects:
Secret Invasion: X-Men #1-4

She Hulk Volume 8: Secret Invasion
Collects:
She-Hulk #31-33, X-Factor #34-35

Nova Volume 3: Secret Invasion
Collects:
Nova #13-18

There’s also the Secret Invasion Omnibus by Brian Michael Bendis which collects Secret Invasion and the Avengers specific tie-in issues into one big hardcover.

Secret Invasion Omnibus by Brian Michael Bendis
Collects: Secret Invasion #1-8, Secret Invasion: Prologue; New Avengers (2004 series) #31-32, #39-49; Mighty Avengers (2007 series) #7, #12-20; New Avengers: Illuminati #1 and #5

Secret Invasion: Dark Reign cover by Alex Maleev.
Secret Invasion: Dark Reign cover by Alex Maleev.

After Secret Invasion

Without spoiling the ending of Secret Invasion too much, the shape of the Marvel Universe changes after the conclusion of this comic book event. This opens up to the a period of Marvel Comics history known as Dark Reign.

Dark Reign is a thematic event through a number of storylines. Marvel’s villains have risen in stature in the Marvel Universe and has resulted in a string of interesting challenges and stories for Marvel’s heroes. These stories will have the Dark Reign branding on them.

If there seems to be enough demand for it, I’ll put together a Dark Reign guide in the future. Let me know in the comments if you think it would be valuable for you.

Also spinning out of the conclusion of Secret Invasion is War of Kings. This is a cosmic event which features the Inhumans, Guardians of the Galaxy, Nova, and others.

Secret Invasion (2022 series) #1 cover by Matteo Lolli.
Secret Invasion (2022 series) #1 cover by Matteo Lolli.

What the deal with the 2022 Secret Invasion miniseries?

You may have seen that there’s also a 2022 Secret Invasion miniseries. This one is what you would call a spiritual sequel so that Marvel has something new on the shelves when the Disney+ series comes out.

Check it out if you’re looking for another Skrull-centric story to read. However, it’s not essential to read if you’re looking to read the original Secret Invasion comic book event.

Have Your Say!

Did you find this Secret Invasion reading order useful? Let me know in the comments below or via Facebook or Twitter.

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Comments (15)

  • I would also love a Dark Reign reading order done in this same style! Really appreciate how helpful this was, and Dark Reign is the section of Marvel I need the most help with, for sure.

    • This is a collection of issues of comics that fit into the “Secret Invasion: The Infiltration And Other Comics Leading Up To Secret Invasion” section plus some Skrull related issues from the past (eg first appearance).

  • Due to Spider-Man being in the Savage Land, the second issue of the Spider-Man tie in should be before issue 5 of Secret Invasion, when he and the others are getting ready to leave, not after issue 6 where it is at the moment when they’d already left the Savage Land

  • Iron Man: Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. #33 follows on directly from Avengers: The Initiative #16, with the opening of the Iron Man issue being a rehash of events from The Initiative #16

  • Just noticed as well that Black Panther (2005 series) #40 is happening concurrently to Secret Invasion #6, not before it

  • Also, all the Secret Invasion: Thor issues happen prior to Secret Invasion #4 and definitely before Thor\’s appearance in Secret Invasion #6

  • Couple of mistakes here and there but overall okay, the She-hulk and X-Factor issues should be closer together because they carry straight on from one another, and Nova 17 should be before She-Hulk 32 because the Super-Skrull goes from Nova 17 on to She-Hulk 32. Some of the issues can be read a lot closer together in general as well or a bit earlier than show here.

    • Hey JB, thanks for the suggestions. I based the reading order off what Marvel has supplied in the past, but I guess it isn’t perfect when there are so many parallel stories going on.

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