Time Variance Authority

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The Time Variance Authority (TVA) is an agency concerned with monitoring realities throughout the multiverse and attempting to keep temporal interference to a minimum. They operate from the Null-Time Zone dimension, in which time cannot be interfered with, and have a working relationship with time travelers such as Kang the Conqueror. The TVA’s highest authority is their director, Mr. Alternity. Beneath him are various administrators, each an identical clone, including Mr. Mobius M. Mobius, Mr. Orobourous, Mr. Paradox, and Mr. Tesseract. The TVA uses a virtually infinite number of Chronomonitors, faceless men who sit before computers in the Hall of Chronometry that monitor every event of the timeline to which they have been assigned. There is a Chronomonitor for every timeline in existence, with one created every time a reality comes into being. When time travel or reality warps occur within their assigned reality, the Chronomonitors alert the administrators through tachyon impulses, and the administrators determine how to proceed. The TVA’s warriors are the Minutemen, an army of soldiers produced via cloning and cybernetics, and wearing suits of power armor. The Minutemen are led by the Justices, temporal patrol officers with the authority to time travel and solve the TVA’s problems; the most well-known of their number is Justice Peace, who was once sent to Earth-616 to eliminate the murderous Zaniac. The TVA also employs various freelance operatives.

The TVA has the power to “discontinue” timelines, virtually erasing them from history. They have also used their powers to incarcerate time travelers such as Arno Stark, the Iron Man of Earth-8410 circa 2020 AD. The TVA once employed a band of robots called the Incinerators to help maintain the timelines, but the Incinerators took their mission too seriously, causing massive damage. The TVA released the Incinerators from their service, but they continued in their mission, often opposed by Professor Justin Alphonse Gamble, a former TVA agent turned adventurer.

During one of the TVA’s missions, they encountered the dimension of Earth-8810, in which that reality’s counterpart of Galactus had been forced by the Dreaming Celestial to become a living black hole, warping both space and time, overlapping into other realities. The TVA’s investigation accidentally exacerbated the problem, creating a Time Bubble stretching fifteen years that prevented anyone from time traveling past that point in either direction. The TVA hired the time-traveling bounty hunter Death’s Head to explore the Time Bubble; he encountered Earth-616’s Fantastic Four while that group was on an extended time-travel adventure, during which they explored the Time Bubble, visited Earth-9061 where a robot of Josef Stalin ruled the Soviet Union, and visited an island which had been wrought by fractures of temporal energy, causing dinosaurs to emerge. The TVA quarantined the Fantastic Four to their own timeline and intended to summon them before the council. When FF leader Mr. Fantastic (Reed Richards) later used another time travel device, they immediately confiscated it. After Mr. Fantastic fought Dr. Doom (Victor von Doom) in a battle of time-jumps set between seconds, Justice Peace and the Minutemen arrested the Fantastic Four and brought them to their headquarters for a trial, intending to erase the Fantastic Four’s timeline from existence, but the Fantastic Four escaped and Mr. Fantastic introduced a virus into the TVA’s computers that generated a reality wave. The reality wave caused their home timeline to become unregistered with the TVA, allowing them a loophole to avoid further action.

The TVA monitored the events of the “Timequake” in which Immortus amassed a vast quantity of temporal energy. The TVA recruited heroes from various timelines in attempts to combat Immortus, but were finally convinced by Reality-616’s Uatu the Watcher (acting as adviser) to send Reed Richards’ Rocket Group from Earth-8212 to Immortus at a point before he discovered time travel and convince him to accept the Saturnyne Symbiont, which would prevent him from being able to store the temporal energy later on as Immortus. The younger Immortus agreed, solving the problem. Scandalized over the Fantastic Four’s escape, administrator Mobius M. Mobius enlisted the Fantastic Four to aid him in overcoming a demotion with the TVA. When Mobius threatened to accept a job offer from Kang the Conqueror, he was restored to his former TVA position.

When the TVA assigned Godwulf to capture Timestream, both of whom were time travelers native to Earth-7484, Justice Peace was ordered to bring in Godwulf if he failed. Godwulf was aided by Earth-7484’s Deathlok (Luther Manning) and Earth-616’s Deathlok (Michael Collins) and Siege (John Kelly). They undid the temporal damage Timestream had caused, satisfying the TVA’s needs, and Godwulf and his allies were returned to their home timelines by Justice Peace. When eight minutes of time went missing, the TVA alerted Mr. Fantastic, and requested his aid in determining what had become of them. It proved to be part of the plans of Ramades, son of Kang (in his Rama-Tut aspect), who was intent on conquering the modern age. He was ultimately defeated by Mr. Fantastic’s son Franklin, who exposed Ramades to the eight minutes of missing time, trapping him in an ever-repeating eight-minute loop. With Ramades gone, the TVA was able to untangle time itself.

When Earth-616 time-travel inventor Charles Czarkowski shot a man who he claimed was fated to shoot him in the future, his lawyers, Augustus Pugliese and Jennifer Walters (the She-Hulk), brought in the TVA to assist them in the trial. The TVA provided jurors taken from a point in time one year earlier who were all destined to die before Czarkowski’s crime, in that way being certain that the jurors were unbiased. Justice Peace eventually determined that Czarkowski had shot himself while time traveling, and allowed events to play themselves out to complete the paradox; however, the She-Hulk had attempted to warn one of the jurors of his impending death — her fellow Avenger Hawkeye (Clint Barton). For this crime, She-Hulk was brought to the Null-Time Zone to be removed from history by the retro-active cannon. She-Hulk argued for the impact she had made on others in order to sway the TVA, and many of her friends from the past, present and future were brought to the Null-Time Zone for the trial. After the villain Clockwise stole the ret-can and used it to attack the TVA, wiping out Justice Goodwill, Mr. Paradox and Mr. Orobouros from existence, She-Hulk helped defeat him, and the TVA ultimately ruled that she was worthy of existence. Furthermore, they were convinced to release into her custody the Two-Gun Kid (Matt Hawk), whom they had removed from his native time in the 1880s because his time travels had given him knowledge of the future. The Two-Gun Kid was permitted to return to the modern era with She-Hulk, on the condition that he never return to his own time.

Imprisoned for interfering with history for personal gain, former Chronomonitor #616 escaped and, presumably modeling himself after Earth-6311 (“Other Earth”)’s 31st century’s Nathaniel Richards, fled to Earth-20051’s ancient Egypt in a Sphinx-shaped time ship and used his advanced technology to take over as “Pharaoh Rama-Tut.” Ruling tyrannically, Rama decided to pull back a sculptor from the future to erect the supreme monument to him. He chose that reality’s 21st century’s Alicia Masters, but her friends the Fantastic Four followed her through the time portal and eventually exposed Rama-Tut’s true nature before defeating him. TVA agents arrived soon after, placed their renegade former servant in an endless temporal loop, sent the Fantastic Four and Alicia to their own time, and erased their conscious memories of their trip to the past.

At the end of time itself, the TVA’s last director — “He Who Remains” — is fated to assist in the birth of the Time-Keepers, the triad of creatures who became the masters of Immortus and custodians of time using all of the power which the TVA had amassed during its existence. Due to the nature of temporal mechanics, the TVA and Time-Keepers have repeatedly interacted with each other.

NOTE: At least one incarnation of the Two-Gun Kid apparently perished in Wonderment, Montana in 1885. It is not known whether this is an alternate timeline, or whether the TVA will eventually allow the Kid to return to his own time.