Cosmo the Space Dog may not be one of the most prominent members of the Guardians of the Galaxy, but he’s stepping up to stop one of the King in Black’s henchmen in the pages of Symbiote Spider-Man: King in Black. The series is a prequel to Marvel’s current massive crossover. It sees a team of Spider-Man, Rocket Raccoon, Kang the Conqueror, Black Knight and Captain Marvel racing to stop Knull’s follower Mister E from destroying the Ebony Blade, a weapon that could possibly kill the King in Black. The beginning of the series’ fourth issue sees Mister E arrive on Knowhere to find someone who can destroy. But he didn’t account for Knowhere’s chief of security, Cosmo.
Cosmo was first introduced in 2008 in Nova #8 by writers Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning and artist Wellinton Alves. He was originally a dog that was shot into orbit by the Soviet Space Program, but at some point his spacecraft went off course and he drifted away into space, eventually finding his way to Knowhere. After being blasted with cosmic rays, he gained several powers, including telepathy that allows him to communicate (with a Russian accent), read and control minds, and create illusions. He also has numerous telekinetic powers, including creating energy blasts and defensive shields. He was eventually named head of security for Knowhere. When Star-Lord established his Guardians of the Galaxy team following the Annihilation: Conquest storyline, they used Knowhere as their base of operations. Cosmo worked closely with the team, sending them on missions and assisting them when needed.
In preview pages for Symbiote Spider-Man: King in Black #4 by writer Peter David and artist Greg Land, Mister E has the Ebony Blade in his possession and comes to Knowhere to find Ulicia, a troll who is capable of destroying it. After quickly dispatching Ulicia’s brother Ulik, Mister E rushes to attack Ulicia before being hit by a psychic blast from Cosmo, who has arrived just in time to save Uliica. Mister E doesn’t stay down for long, but Cosmo does pull a whammy on him. As he says, “I’m the head of security for a reason.”
Cosmo’s appearance in this issue could reveal answers about his long-running feud with Rocket. Though it has never been fully explained, the two have never really gotten along in their interactions. This dislike has even carried over into the MCU; when Cosmo made a brief cameo appearance in one of the Collector’s glass cages in the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie, he and Rocket Raccoon locked eyes and growled at each other. Given that the issue takes place before the formation of the current Guardians of the Galaxy team, it’s possible that readers will get a glimpse into the origins of their mutual animosity.
Spider-Man swings in at the end of the preview to join the fight, and it can be safe to assume that the rest of his ragtag team is not far behind. Whether Cosmo will be joining up with them or just popped in for a quick cameo remains to be seen. But it’s refreshing to witness an appearance by such an important and undervalued figure in the Guardians’ history. Say what you will about the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy, but it’s hard to deny that Cosmo the Space Dog is a very good boy.
Symbiote Spider-Man: King in Black #4 goes on sale February 24.