If you’ve been following along with what’s being going on with the Marvel Universe right now, you’ve noticed that your favorite books have been missing. If you haven’t been following along, then don’t feel bad, it’s quite confusing because Marvel’s summer story arc, Secret Wars, has been dominating their current lineup.
If you’re not too familiar with the 1984 Secret Wars, the story revolved around a place called Battleworld where a supreme being called the Beyonder brought the characters of the Marvel Universe together to fight it out. So, what’s the difference with this summer’s Secret Wars? Everything, except the name of the story arc and the place Battleworld.
In this summer’s arc, the Marvel Universe crashes together, resulting in a hodgepodge world that consists of pieces of the realities that we know and love. This Battleworld is ruled by none other than Doctor Doom. It’s a weird mix of realities on Battleworld, confusing, in my opinion, where we see a world where there is more than 1 Thor who act as Doom’s police force, for example. In all honesty, that’s the only thing that I remember after reading a few issues of Secret Wars.
Yeah, I really wanted to read this arc but it’s like being thrown in the pool for the first time and expecting to swim. There are so many things that have changed, along with some of our favorite characters just being straight up gone. But what does this mean for the Marvel Universe moving forward? Well, it means characters on new teams. That’s what I’m drawing from this story arc.
In the next few months, Marvel will be releasing the aftermath of Secret Wars where, like I said before, we’ll see some characters on new teams. I see why Marvel did this. It’s a great chance for new readers to jump onto books for the first time. And, as an ongoing comic reader, the chances of checking out these new titles because of the new members is very high. Though, I do feel a little disappointed that Marvel basically wiped the slate clean from the current books that I’m reading but I guess it keeps things fresh and new.
I won’t go into super detail on the many changes but I’ll highlight a few that stood out to me. The first being Invincible Iron Man which brings Mary Jane Watson, Peter Parker’s old flame, into Tony Stark’s storyline. At this point she’s only been featured in Spider-Man’s storylines so this Spidey fan immediately wonders what kind of relationship MJ will have with Iron Man himself. And writer, Brian Michael Bendis, is keeping tight-lipped on it, stating,
“They know each other… She used to live in Avengers Tower. But that’s all I’m going to say for now because what kind of relationship they end up having is a big part of what I would like people to buy the book for. But what I can tell you is that it is new territory for both Tony and Mary Jane. And that is pretty exciting to write… This is a grown-up woman who has been through a lot.”
– quote from a Brian Michael Bendis interview published on Marvel.com
The next change is the introduction of a new Avengers team that includes Ms. Marvel, Nova, Ultimate Spider-Man (ie Miles Morales), Thor (who if you haven’t been following Thor lately, Thor Odinson isn’t Thor anymore but is actually Jane Foster), Captain America (but not Steve Rogers but Sam Wilson aka The Falcon), Iron Man, and Vision. Similarly to what we saw at the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron, a new Avengers teamed is formed, and seeing how the new dynamic of characters plays out will be interesting.
Some big changes we’ll see include some characters taking the place of characters that we’ve been familiar with for years. One example is X-23 who becomes the new Wolverine. But her All New Wolverine title won’t be the only Wolverine book coming out. One of the cool things Marvel did was re-introduce Mark Millar’s Old Man Logan character in Secret Wars. Millar debut this version of Logan in his 8-issue storyline back in September 2008 which was set in the alternate universe of Earth-807128. Jeff Lemuire will take over for Brian Michael Bendis once the Battleworld Old Man Logan miniseries finishes up.
If you’ve been shouting for a new Hulk book, then you’re in luck because Hulk is getting his own book with a new green guy as well, Amadeus Cho, who will be Marvel’s first-ever Asian American Hulk! And, if you’re a fan of Kate Bishop like I am, the next few months will see her in All New Hawkeye where she’s rumored to be at odds with Clint Barton. Some interesting changes, huh?
If you’re like me, these are a lot of changes but don’t worry, some of your favorites like Peter Parker will continue his web slinging thing in Amazing Spider-Man and Spider-Gwen herself will be back on her own book with stories set in her original reality of Earth-65. Plus, X-Men will be back with three books for all you mutant-lovers out there. Some speculation was Marvel was moving away from “mutants” because Fox owns the rights but that isn’t true in the comic universe. The Inhumans will be bumped up though because of their incorporation into Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and in their future movie, so don’t be surprised if you see them interacting with the X-Men.
As for Fantastic Four, the team seems to be dissolving; The Thing joins the Guardians of the Galaxy, the Human Torch will be part of Uncanny Inhumans, and Sue and Reed Richards are simply not in any book. Maybe they’ll be back in the future but after the latest movie rendition of this team, maybe it’s good they aren’t a team right now.
There’s a lot of stuff changing in the next few months and if I can offer any advice, all I can say is don’t worry about what happened during Secret Wars, just choose the books you want to follow and get ready to learn about what this new Marvel Universe is all about. It’s definitely exciting for Marvel to reset the norm and I’m interested to see what they have to offer in the future. If you want to see the 45 of 60 new titles Marvel will be releasing, check them out here and let us know what you’ll be picking up! New comics are always something to be giddy about! I know I’ll be adding some new stuff come new comic book day!
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