The "Quest for Missing Moment" in Marvel's Timeless to continue in The Avengers in 2023

art from Timeless #1
art from Timeless #1 (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

If you read December 28's Timeless #1 one-shot special from Marvel Comics, we still don't what the 'Missing Moment' is that Kang the Conquerer is pursuing, but we do know it will be at the center of the Avengers title when it almost certainly relaunches with a new creative team (and a new/old logo) in 2023.

Marvel has released for the press what is essentially the last page of Timeless, stating "The Quest for the Missing Moment Continues in 2023 in The Avengers" with the "The Avengers" depicted as a logo used in 1985 through 1989 beginning with Avengers #256.

Timeless #1 teaser (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

Despite the teases, Timeless may offer some pretty good hypotheses surrounding the future of the Avengers.

Remember, Jason Aaron has just begun his Avengers and Avengers Forever swan song after several years as the flagship series' writer, which will conclude in April's Avengers Assemble Omega special.

The publisher has not yet revealed who will take over the franchise following Aaron's exit, but a good bet following Timeless would be its writer, Jed MacKay, who Newsarama recently identified as one of the writers most likely to take become the next Avengers writer.

While Timeless gives glimpses of some other upcoming Marvel events, the one-shot is mostly focused on Kang and his new mysterious masked adversary Myrddin, and his acolytes the Twilight Court, souped-up analogs of figures from Arthurian legend.

The story in Timeless isn't just a vehicle to preview 2023 titles, it's a dense story mostly involving Kang and Myrddin's conflict and setting up Myrddin's debut, and it seems likely MacKay is setting up his own storyline here.

So while not confirmed, MacKay has undoubtedly jumped to the top of the list of potential new Avengers writers.

The second is the identity of Myrddin themself.

Timeless #1 (2022) (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

First of all, the name Myrddin is from a legend Welsh legend that was later combined with another legend into the composite figure Merlinus Ambrosius (aka the Arthurian Merlin) which may hold some clue as to her or his identity.

The Marvel figure with the most apparent connection to Arthurian legend is the Black Knight. The first bearer of the Ebony Blade, Sir Percy of Scandia, was a member of King Arthur's court. Sir Percy is an ancestor of the current Black Knight and bearer of the cursed Blade, Dane Whitman, who is currently part of the cast of Savage Avengers after having been given a new status quo by writer Sy Spurrier in 2021.

And that's interesting considering the new/old Avengers logo made its debut with the aforementioned Avengers #256, which just so happened to feature Dane Whitman joining the Avengers line-up.

The Ebony Blade itself also appears in Timeless, as Kang wields it to battle one of the Twilight Court. Kang claims to have retrieved it a thousand years in the future on a dead planet, after an unknown bearer butchered every living person on the planet, before dying "themselves."

art from Timeless #1 (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

After battling Kang and nearly killing him and believing themself victorious, Myrddin retires to her or his chambers, when the villain reveals to readers she or he is someone Kang (and therefore readers) would know, and is shown turning over a Kang piece on a chessboard, which also includes figures of Doctor Doom, Ultron, and who appears to be Baron Mordo, and who may or may not be D'Spayre.

D'Spayre, a demonic entity who is the physical embodiment of the fear felt by the citizens of Atlantis and Lemuria when the lost continents sank in the ancient Marvel Universe, is one of the so-called Fear Lords who serve the cosmic villain known as the Dweller-in-Darkness.

Either way, it appears Myrddin will be the big bad of the new Avengers series; will be looking to take out other prominent Marvel villains; and if we had to make a prediction right now, it appears as if it might be a leveled-up Dane Whitman.

Black Knight fans in good standing now Dane has gone bad before when possessed by the Bloodwraith entity that curses the Ebony Blade.

Alternatively, Dane Whitman's new-found daughter Jacks with who he now shares the Ebony Blade curse is another possibility, as Timeless seems to take care not to reveal Myrddin's gender outright.

Either way, we might learn more about the future of the Avengers in Marvel's April 2023 solicitations later this month. 

Before Kang the Conquerer makes his MCU debut, learn about his comic book powers and origin.

I'm not just the Newsarama founder and editor-in-chief, I'm also a reader. And that reference is just a little bit older than the beginning of my Newsarama journey. I founded what would become the comic book news site in 1996, and except for a brief sojourn at Marvel Comics as its marketing and communications manager in 2003, I've been writing about new comic book titles, creative changes, and occasionally offering my perspective on important industry events and developments for the 25 years since. Despite many changes to Newsarama, my passion for the medium of comic books and the characters makes the last quarter-century (it's crazy to see that in writing) time spent doing what I love most.