Marvel Crash Something Like Fifteen Different Events Together in Hopes of Creating SUPEREVENT

The last few days have been bizarre, at Marvel. With the news that Jonathan Hickman’s run on Avengers is leading up to the return of ‘Secret Wars’ next year, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the company would settle with just the one big event. Not so. Instead, over the last few days they’ve been teasing the return of basically every major event that the company have ever published. First was Secret Wars, then Civil War, Marvel Zombies, Age of Ultron. And now, hey! They’re throwing in something called ‘Years of Future Past’ as well.

I hope you’ll all join me for a hearty Claremontian WHAT THE DEVIL

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Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic’s Secret Wars seems to be the catalyst to all this. Hickman’s writing has introduced the concept of ‘incursions’ to the Marvel Universe – sort of black holes which drag alternate worlds close to one another, I think. As you can see in the image above, the storyline seems to be merging a whole load of different characters into the same world – lots of alternate universe stuff going on.

That seems to be leading into a series of familiar titles with unfamiliar casts and ideas coming up:

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My guess is we’ll be seeing a lot of these things coming in the next few days. Is anybody ready for INFERNOS?

THE INFINITY BOOT?

A SECOND MUTANT MASSACRE?

RETURN OF THE PIXIE STRIKES BACK?

 

NYCC’14: DC Spin Round Really Fast, Suddenly Reveal Wonder Woman ’77 Series

Here’s one nobody expected: a six-part digital comic from DC based on the Wonder Woman TV show, which starred Lynda Carter as the Amazing Amazon.

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Like Batman ’66 before it, the series will take the iconic and somewhat campy original series and bring it into the modern era without changing a flipping thing about it. The twirling will remain, the invisible jet will be all fueled up – and if she gets on a skateboard, you can be darned sure she’s going to put some kneepads on.

Marc Andreyko will write the series, joined by Nicola Scott as cover artist (as in the amazing image above) and rotating artists handling the interiors. Do you have interiors in a digital comic? That’s the sort of question I’m going to lazily ignore for the time being.

Debuting as a digital six-part series in December, the comic will then head to print a little ways down the line – much in the style of Batman ’66, once more. If we have a Batman and a Wonder Woman series based on classic properties, then that does make you wonder… how long until Christopher Reeves’ Superman flies in?

NYCC’14: Lemire and Perez Relaunch Hawkeye, Spencer and Rosanas Launch Ant-Man

Last few bits of NYCC news from Marvel, promise! They did also announce a new Gamora series from screenwriter Nicole Perlman, but I don’t consider that news until they tell us who the artist is. SO INSTEAD here’s news of two upcoming solo series from Marvel, one of which you’ll have seen coming for a while.

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Ant-Man gets his own series just in time for next year’s movie, with Scott Lang as the man inside the helmet. Written by Nick Spencer and drawn by Ramon Rosanas, the series remains vague due to this frustratingly dull announcement interview posed to Spencer. From the questions asked, we basically know nothing about the book aside from maybe Iron Man will show up. Let’s wait on that one, then.

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Comics’ other great Ramon, Ramon Perez, will be stepping into the shoes of David Aja/Annie Wu and taking on the most tricksy job in comics – coming in as artist for Hawkeye. He’ll be joined on the book by writer Jeff Lemire. The creative team have been very careful to let people know that ‘Hawkeye’ will remain a term which stretches, so both Kate Bishop and Clint Barton will remain tied to the series. Sana Amanat will edit the series, and the three speak to CBR here.

This is Lemire’s first ongoing work at Marvel, after doing a story in an anthology a few years back. Moved on from his DC contract, he’s clearly interested in racing around the world of comics for the time being – he has work at Valiant, Dark Horse, everywhere, it seems. Hawkeye looks to be moving in a different direction to the previous tone from Fraction/Aja (which, if I’m being honest? Got boring for me fairly quickly, and became something for acclaim-seekers rather than anyone else) by broadening out the focus. The new arc will be looking at Clint Barton’s past as well as present, fleshing his life out a little for readers.

One more post and we’ll all be done with NYCC ’14!

NYCC’14: Fantastic Four Finally Finishes

Confirming reports that have been going around for about a year by this point, Marvel confirmed this weekend that Fantastic Four will be ending next year. Currently written by James Robinson and Leonard Kirk, the book has been circling cancellation for quite a while now.

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The unofficial report is that the series is ending because Marvel want to downplay any comics which they don’t own the film license for – which is why you see a lot less of the X-Men nowadays, and especially not in promotional material. As a result X-Men, Fantastic Four and the other few characters/properties have had limitations placed on them by the company, and writers/artists have to stick to them. That’s the unofficial line.

The official line is that the book will be ending next year.

My line? My line is that Fantastic Four has been a crap series for years now, carried along by tradition and name-value rather than any semblence of good storytelling or interesting work. Mark Millar/Brian Hitch’s poor run banged a very prominent nail into the coffin, which was propped open by sheer force of will by Jonathan Hickman. However, with Hickman now on the Avengers titles instead, the Fantastic Four have fatally floundered ever since. It’s just not a comic that works anymore, and Marvel seem to have no handle on it at all.

Can you name anything that’s happened in the current run? Or the Fraction run? Nope. That’s why I think Fantastic Four is done, for the time being. It’s run a course, and now it’s time to let it rest.

NYCC’14: Wolverines, G.Willow Wilson Takes Over X-Men; and the Iffy-Sounding ‘Black Vortex’

Let’s take a quick look at the X-Men announcements and pieces from this year’s New York Comic Con.

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First up is the news that Charles Soule, Fay Fawkes and Nick Bradshaw will be the team for a weekly series called ‘Wolverines’. As you’ll know by now, Wolverine is due to die this week – after which he’ll start appearing in more comics than ever before, it appears. First he’ll die, then there’ll be funerals and flashback scenes, and several different one-shot comics all about his legacy, and I don’t even know what else.

Wolverines will be the next pick-up point, as far as I can tell, as the creative team follow a cast including X-23, Mystique and Sabretooth while they investigate a few loose ends which come to their attention once the Crazy Canuck carks it. Daken will also be involved, and upcoming covers suggest – oh dear – that Mr Sinister plays a role in the book. There’s no other details I can spot – so presumably the book will just continue to come out, every week, until the end of time. It starts in 2015

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Adjectiveless X-Men, which launched to much grandstanding and an all-female team only to quickly completely lose the fanbase once allegations about Brian Wood’s behaviour at conventions came to light, will be getting a new writer next year in the form of G.Willow Wilson. With the current arc by Marc Guggenheim, this’ll mark the first time the book has had a female writer since it began. It also means she’ll have now written both of the most prominent Muslim characters at Marvel, so expect her to relaunch MI:13 next.

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Black Vortex – who is not the name of a 1980s Justice League member, but sounds like it should be – will see Brian Michael Bendis and Sam Humphries cross over the X-Men and the Guardians of the Galaxy a second time. This’ll be a grander event, however, dragging in other titles like Nova and Star-Lord into its path.

It’ll see a mystical ‘thing’ come into being which can alter the existence of anybody who handles it – and will then get thrown into the hands of people like Kitty Pryde and Carol Danvers. A lot of characters are in space at the moment, so along with core books All-New X-Men and Guardians of the Galaxy, expect to see Captain Marvel, Cyclops, and several other titles get pulled into the way of this one.

The storyline – in true tradition – will have an Alpha and Omega issue bookend, each drawn by Ed McGuinness. The story is set to start in February.

Marvel’s Next Star Wars Comic to Feature Character Nobody’s Heard Of

Marvel have announced a few more comics today at NYCC, including another addition to their collection of Star Wars stories. Called ‘Kanan: The Last Padawan’, this is about a character I’ve never heard of before and will thus assume nobody else has heard of either.

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Written by Greg Weisman – who writes a Star Wars cartoon called ‘Star Wars Rebels’ which I’ve also not heard of and may not actually exist – and drawn by Pepe Larraz, the series focuses on this bloke as he lives life, being the last padawan around. I know what you’re thinking – if he’s the last padawan, who’s that other random person on the above cover, drawn by Mark Brooks? I have no idea. It’s not Princess Leia or Padme, which exhausts all possibilities for who the woman could be.

There’s also a floating head in the background, with a soul patch. What the hell’s going on there, then? Why isn’t this a Lando Calrissian comic? Many questions abound. I’ve been awake for about 24 hours straight and this is all very confusing right now.

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