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Facts About Jarella's World That Will Give Fans Subatomic Knowledge

In "Ant-Man & The Wasp: Quantumania," the heroes are trapped in the mysterious, subatomic Quantum Realm. There, they meet Kang the Conqueror, but they also encounter other denizens of this subatomic, time-spanning realm. That includes Jentorra (played by Katy M. O'Brian) and, in a truly deep cut, Krylar (played by Bill Murray). Serious fans of the Hulk may recognize both of them from the comics as being from the subatomic world of K'ai, colloquially known as Jarella's world. 

It's first seen in "The Incredible Hulk" #140, as the Hulk is shrunk down to subatomic size and arrives in a world filled with green-skinned humanoids just like him. In saving these people, he meets the kind and beautiful Jarella, the queen, and the Hulk agrees to become her king. Tragedy strikes multiple times as they are separated and she dies, but the world of K'ai continues to appear and make connections with other characters, like Drax the Destroyer, the Micronauts (aka, the Microns), and even the Hulk's sinister son Hiro-Kala. K'ai itself always seems on the brink of destruction, often thanks to inadvertent actions by the Hulk, but also by any number of foreign invaders. Let's explore some facts about Jarella's world, K'ai, that will give readers subatomic knowledge. 

Space Glider brings it all down

First seen in "Micronauts" #1, Arcturus Rann is the hero of the Microverse planet called Homeworld. The son of the legendary king and queen Dallan and Sepsis, he's the descendant of Prince Wayfinder, who brought people called the Wanderers from Earth to the Microverse millennia ago. He and the other original Micronauts were created by Bill Mantlo, who was inspired by the Micronauts toys his son got for Christmas and suggested that Marvel license them. The Space Glider toy, with a glider jetpack, became the space-faring Arcturus Rann. 

Rann eventually goes into a thousand-year stay in suspended animation, and it's there that he makes contact with the Microverse-preserving Enigma Force. Prior to this, however, he travels to various worlds in the Microverse as a military representative of Homeworld. He believes that K'ai, hostile to Homeworld and teeming with technological brilliance, is building a doomsday weapon that could wipe out his home planet. However, the inspectors find nothing out of order. Despite this, Rann orders his Death's Head bombers to destroy K'ai (in "Incredible Hulks: Enigma Force" #3), as his gut tells him he's right. He acts mostly out of fear. The result is a near-total extermination, sinking much of its landmass and driving its remaining populace into barbarism. 

This fact is a secret he carries with him as the supposed Hero of the Microverse, and it's not revealed until he confronts his past on K'ai millennia later.

Jarella and the Hulk

The Hulk gets mixed up with Psyklop, a follower of a race of Dark Gods. His insectoid race walks the Earth long before humanity, but they are put to sleep for failing their gods. Psyklop is awakened in order to investigate a powerful new source of food for the gods: the Hulk. Psyklop shrinks the Hulk down in order to examine him. The Avengers arrive and Psyklop accidentally shrinks him down to a subatomic realm. 

The Hulk winds up on K'ai in "Incredible Hulk" #140 and immediately fights the enormous Warthos, a mix between warthog and canine. This is the first appearance of K'ai, also known as Jarella's world. He then finds a city attacked by Warthos and fends them off himself. He's surprised to receive cheers from the appreciative, green-skinned citizens of the city. Then he's led to Jarella, whose gentle manner immediately charms him. The Hulk meets Jarella's Pantheon of Sorcerers (Holi, Moli, and Torla), who cast a spell that not only allows him to understand their language, but also allows the mind of Bruce Banner to occupy the Hulk's body. 

Jarella announces that the Hulk is to be her husband. The Hulk, finding peace for the first time, is delighted by this idea. He puts down a palace rebellion and is ready to marry Jarella when Psyklop brings him back to Earth. A furious Hulk destroys his lab, casting Psyklop's fate to the Dark Gods, but he loses his chance at love.

Krylar and Visis scheme

Thanks to Pym Particles and the cosmic being called the Shaper, the Hulk returns to K'ai in "Incredible Hulk" #156 and immediately regains Bruce Banner's intelligence. He casts out Visis, the former advisor to Jarella, as a traitor after Visis sent assassins after him and Jarella. In exile, Visis learns magic and destroys Jarella's city, taking her prisoner. He's set on marrying her, threatening to kill her people if she doesn't comply with his demands. 

The Hulk immediately sets out and tames the leader of a pack of Warthos, leading them into battle against Visis. He crashes into Visis' castle just as he's about to marry Jarella. Jarella rallies her people, the sorcerers weaken Visis, and the Hulk smashes ... a lot. 

Desperate, Visis makes an alliance with Krylar, the leader of the assassins of Pitll Pawob. This island is the only landmass left after Arcturus Rann destroyed much of K'ai centuries before, and it's a stronghold of deadly technology. When the Hulk attacks, Krylar turns a weapon on him that brings his greatest fear to life — in this case, the savage Hulk. The bestial Hulk wreaks havoc, until the sorcerers reverse the magic that gives the Hulk Banner's intelligence, and the creature is defeated. Visis accuses Krylar of betrayal and kills him. At that moment, the Pym Particles wear off, but the Hulk destroys Visis' castle on his way back to Earth. 

Psyklop and the Dark Gods

In "Incredible Hulk" #200-203, Hulk is shrunk down by Doc Samson, using Hank Pym's Micron Cannon, to save Glenn Talbot's life. But the Hulk keeps shrinking and winds up on K'ai once again. He sees the people of K'ai about to sacrifice Jarella. It turns out that the last time the Hulk left, he accidentally kicked K'ai out of orbit. The planet is experiencing massive earthquakes, and the populace believes that the cause is the God of the Mountain. They offer Jarella up as a sacrifice to spare themselves from his further wrath. 

Jarella and the Hulk confront the Mountain God, a green-skinned giant who threatens to grind the Hulk's bones for his bread. The Hulk responds by smashing (of course), and inadvertently discovers that the Mountain God is actually a robot. Hulk crushes its head and throws it down the mountain. Then the creator of the robot appears. It's Psyklop, who explains more of his people's connection to the Dark Gods, and how he has no choice but to offer up K'ai to his mysterious masters. 

Psyklop reveals to Jarella that he's trapped the life force of Kai's dead in an Essence Urn that he plans to give to the Dark Gods. However, Jarella's sorcerers are watching, and they lead a revolt with the Hulk. The Urn is cracked and absorbs Psyklop. However, he will return to plague K'ai.

The Hulk returns to bury Jarella

In "Incredible Hulk" #245-248, Hulk learns that Gamma Base has the body of his deceased beloved Jarella for experimentation, and he wants her to get a proper burial on K'ai. Captain Mar-Vell gives him an assist after the Hulk pounds Major Glenn Talbott and his men into paste, and the Hulk returns to Jarella's world. However, K'ai is in shambles. When the Hulk and Jarella are brought back to Earth by way of a slide and a powerful microscope, the Hulk shatters the slide because he's furious that he's been forced back. 

Encountering the Pantheon of Sorcerers, they tell him that shattering the slide caused planetary disasters, killing all life except in one valley. The Hulk investigates this Valley of Life, forbidden to the people but accepting of animals and the dead. He's attacked by animals, plants, and even rocks and water. The Elder of the Universe called the Gardener emerges, revealing he's used an Infinity Stone to create his own little paradise. Unlike his "brothers," the Collector and the Grandmaster, the Gardener just wants a little peace.

The Hulk rejects this, battles the Gardener, and inspires the remaining populace to resist his army of plants and animals. The Hulk grabs the Infinity Stone and hurls it into Kai's core, causing the whole planet to bloom again, moving the animals to befriend the people. The Gardener apologizes as the Hulk buries Jarella. Once again, K'ai survives a near-extinction event. 

Drax the destroyer comes to K'ai

After Jarella's death, there are often power vacuums on K'ai, and unscrupulous individuals try to fill them. For example, the former Micron Dexam works with a sorceress named Visalia to create the illusion that Visalia is Jarella's sister. The memory of Jarella is so powerful that she's able to fool the people into believing her. The usurpers' task is made even easier when Drax the Destroyer crash lands on K'ai after falling through various realms in "Captain Marvel" Volume 4, #5-6. 

Drax, already operating at a diminished mental capacity, is easily charmed by Visalia into thinking he's the Hulk. As her lover and champion, Visalia has a nearly unbeatable weapon in the Destroyer at her side. All she has to do is convince him that he's in love with her, and controlling him is easy. Drax's presence shows how once again, an alien presence tips the balance of power on K'ai.

Genis-Vell crash lands on K'ai next, looking for Drax. Visalia sends Drax after him, and talks to Dexam about being his lover. Unbeknownst to them, the Micron Marionette spies on them and relays this information. She's able to trick Visalia into revealing her ruse to an angry Drax, who beats up Dexam and then throws them to an angry mob. The people of K'ai love a good, angry mob. 

Jentorra summons the Hulk's son

In "Realm of Kings: Son of Hulk," K'ai is beset by a new plague of Psyklops. Instead of a single entity, there is a hive-mind absorbing the life essences of K'ai's people, once again as food for the Dark Gods. This time around, the Hulk isn't there to rescue the people. The Pantheon of Sorcerers are killed by Psyklops, but their strongest pupil survives. This is Jentorra, who happens to be the niece of Jarella.

Desperate for help, she tries to use a spell to summon the Hulk. Instead, she summons Hiro-Kala, the twin brother of Skaar, son of Hulk. He grew up as a slave to the Axe-Men of Sakaar, until he realizes he was born with the Old Power: control over seismic forces. 

Upon being summoned, Hiro-Kala is able to use his powers to immediately defeat the Psyklops and restore the souls of those who were absorbed. The people of K'ai rejoice and call him their savior, but the sinister Hiro-Kala is looking for an angle to destroy the Old Power, and he's more than willing to commit genocide in order to do it. Jentorra makes a desperate attempt to teleport him away, but he instead rips K'ai out of the Microverse, leaving her for dead. Once again, an alien comes to K'ai, he's initially looked at as a savior, and he only makes things much worse later on. 

The World Mind

Planets in the Microverse are unique because they are all sentient, with their intelligence being referred to as the World Mind. The Micronaut Acroyear becomes one with the World Mind of Spartak in "Micronauts #10" to fight the evil Baron Karza, and he is a crucial part of defeating Karza for the first time. When he calls on it again to face a resurrected Karza, he sacrifices his world in "Micronauts" #28 and is branded a traitor by his love, Cilicia. 

Hiro-Kala is running from his former general on K'ai, who is trying to kill him. He travels underground and finds the World Mind of K'ai. in "Incredible Hulk" #610. The World Mind heals Hiro-Kala and gives him use of his War Mind soldiers, composed of the combined spirits of the deadliest assassins from the Pitll Pawob guild. In exchange, Hiro-Kala lends his planet-healing control over seismic forces to the World Mind, and K'ai is saved in "Incredible Hulk" #611.

However, when the World Mind withdraws its power from him, Hiro-Kala is furious. He tries to get it back, but the World Mind traps him and shows him the truth about his life and then tries to convince him to be the savior of the world he's meant to be, like his father, the Hulk. Instead, Hiro-Kala takes the power and turns everyone on the planet into his mindless slaves in "Incredible Hulks" #613. Betraying K'ai's World Mind makes him the worst of all K'ai's invaders.

K'ai fights back

Hiro-Kala calls himself the Dark Son and savior of K'ai. He exchanges energies with the World Mind to repair the surface and bring back vegetation. The unearthing of a statue of the Hulk is taken as a sign that he's meant to be K'ai's savior, but Hiro-Kala is annoyed by yet another reminder of his absent father. 

When K'ai starts to freeze as it's being towed in space by a fleet, the World Mind tells him to simply set it in orbit around a compatible star. Instead, Hiro-Kala takes the World Mind's powers to turn its populace into zombies and attempts yet another act of genocide, using K'ai as a battering ram in "Incredible Hulks" 613 to destroy the Earth. He thinks he's nobly destroying the Old Power, but he also wants to destroy the planet of his father. 

The Hulk family, in conjunction with Arcturus Rann's Enigma Force team, oppose Hiro-Kala. After he buries his enemies, the Enigma Force, underground, he meets his father at last. The Hulk beats him into submission, but can't bring himself to kill his son. It takes the World Mind's intervention to defeat Hiro-Kala. He truly believes that his mother's spirit visited him and approved of his genocidal behavior, but the World Mind reveals this was a self-justifying hallucination. Skaar turns his brother into stone, and the World Mind takes him to K'ai's core to heal him.

Space Glider pays his dues

In dealing with Hiro-Kala, Arcturus Rann discovers that he was right all along. Millennia earlier, the K'ai assassins really were building a doomsday device to attack Homeworld. When he reveals his sins to Jentorra in "Incredible Hulks: Enigma Force" #3, she's angry and repulsed by his actions, but also realizes that he was right. Regardless, Hiro-Kala is on the verge of killing Rann's Enigma Force team.

The villain recruits a resurrected Visis after Psyklop creates an illusion of the Hulk to extend the fight. When Hiro-Kala realizes that Rann has found something, he confronts the commander at the site of the doomsday weapon. Rann threatens to detonate it, destroying K'ai again just to kill him. Hiro-Kala tries to goad him into doing it, knowing that he's outmaneuvered Rann at every turn. Rann makes the surprise move of permanently deactivating the weapon, but Hiro-Kala buries them underground.

After the Hulk defeats Hiro-Kala, he rescues Enigma Force. Rann stays on K'ai in an effort to repay his debt to the planet and attempts to rebuild it, making a speech to the survivors of K'ai that their planet will "never again kneel before any otherworlder." He breaks the cycle of alien liberators who turn out to be oppressors after starting this cycle of violence.