Comic Book Fix: Marvel Teases Upcoming “NOW!” Titles
Last Updated on Friday, 3 August 2012 02:28 Written by david golbitz Wednesday, 1 August 2012 03:18
Marvel has chosen this week to unveil teaser images of a few of its upcoming “Marvel NOW!” relaunches. Why make these announcements the first week of August instead of, oh, say, during Comic-Con, who knows? I guess they thought they’d get more traction in a slow news cycle rather than deal with the deluge of material spewing forth from San Diego this year. Regardless, this is the week Marvel has chosen. And it must have worked, because here I am writing about it.
Anyone who has perused the latest Previews that was released last week might have noticed that a whole lot of Marvel titles are ending come October, which lines up with the “NOW!” relaunches. Ed Brubaker is leaving Captain America, Matt Fraction is leaving both Invincible Iron Man and The Mighty Thor, Jonathan Hickman is ending his Fantastic Four and FF books, and Jason Aaron is wrapping up his all-too-brief run on Incredible Hulk. Aside from the three previously announced “Marvel NOW!” titles–Uncanny Avengers, New Avengers and All-New X-Men–what else does Marvel have coming down the pike? Well, now we know at least a couple more titles and their creative teams.
Read on for more.
With Matt Fraction and Salvador Larroca wrapping up their impressive four-year run on Invincible Iron Man, Marvel is handing Tony Stark and his motley crew over to writer Kieron Gillen, whose Phonogram remains one of the best comics of the last decade. Joining Gillen on art is Greg Land, which I found to be an interesting choice. After the machine-like output of Larroca, who never required a fill-in artist on Iron Man, Marvel is entrusting one of its highest profile characters to an artist known for missing deadlines left and right? Not that Land doesn’t draw pretty comics. I just find it hard to believe he’ll be able to maintain a regular schedule with this new Iron Man book, though I hope I’m mistaken. Gillen has proven himself to be equally adept at spinning superhero yarns as he is writing about the magic of music. This is actually the first “Marvel NOW!” title that has caught my eye.
In addition to the new Iron Man title, Marvel has also dropped a teaser image for a new Thor book, this one written by Jason “HULK SMASH” Aaron, with art by the inestimable Esad Ribic, who makes this a must-read book all by himself. It will be interesting to see the direction this title takes, as Aaron’s Marvel work has mostly been blue collar, rough-and-tumble action with dollops of increasingly absurdest humor. Just look at his Ghost Rider and Wolverine arcs. Not that Aaron can’t write a character with the gravitas of Thor, though I do have a feeling the Warriors Three, and Volstagg in particular, will be appearing quite often in this book.
::EDIT – August 1::
Wednesday’s teaser, confirmed by Mark Waid’s twitter feed, is the announcement of a new Hulk series, written by Waid and with art by Leinil Yu. Waid promises that his Hulk will include moments of humor in-between all the smashing.
Y’know, the more information we get about “Marvel NOW!” the more it seems to be nothing more than a big game of musical chairs, with all of Marvel’s top creators swapping characters.
Stay tuned! Two more books still to be announced this week.
::EDIT – August 2::
Today’s “Marvel NOW!” teaser comes as a bit of a surprise. Not the character so much, but the creators.
If you’re unsure which character “chimichangas” refers to, well, you don’t know Deadpool very well, do you? Marvel’s infamous Merc with a Mouth is getting a new series this fall, alongside Marvel’s other relaunched titles. The interesting thing, as I said, is the creative team.
Marvel has apparently tapped nerd comedian Brian Posehn to write the book, with co-writer Gerry Duggan and art by Tony Moore. Deadpool has always been an odd character, capable of both slapstick comedy and dark menace all on the same page, sometimes even within the same panel. Posehn is an avid comic book fan, so it’s likely that he’s well-aware of the character’s … eccentricities. Still, he doesn’t have a huge resume when it comes to comic book writing. This certainly counts as the most surprising “Marvel NOW!” announcement of the week.
One more teaser to go. Who will it be? Check back tomorrow to find out!
::EDIT – August 3::
Marvel surprised us with not one but four new teasers today, none of which are particularly surprisingly, but all of which could be fun reads.
First up, Invincible Iron Man writer Matt Fraction is moving over to the Baxter Building, filling the seats left vacant by Jonathan Hickman’s departure. Fraction will be taking over both Fantastic Four and its sister title, FF, joined by artists Mark Bagley and Mike Allred, respectively.
In addition to Marvel’s First Family getting a new creative team, so too is Marvel’s First Avenger. Captain America, coming off a nearly 10-year run by Ed Brubaker, will be written by Rick Remender, with art by John Romita Jr.
And finally, because the world was clamoring for yet another X-Men comic, we have the relaunch of X-Men Legacy, by Si Spurrier and Tan Eng Huat.
None of these titles are particularly surprising, certainly not like yesterday’s Deadpool announcement. At best, “Marvel NOW!” is simply bemusing. Marvel seems to be making an awfully big deal out of what seems to be nothing more than creators moving from one book to another. I guess because it’s all happening at once, it’s supposed to be indicate some shift in storytelling, a new “Age” of Marvel Comics. As always, however, success, as with DC’s “New 52,” will hinge on solid stories that people care about. Except in the case of X-Men Legacy, because people will seemingly buy just about anything with an “X” logo emblazoned on it.
The bigger question, to me, is this: which of these books will be the first to undergo a change in creative team, or out-and-out cancellation? And will people ever tire of Marvel’s “event”-centric, summer spectacle publishing plan?
Picks of the Week
- Animal Man #12 (DC Comics), by Jeff Lemire and Steve Pugh
- Beasts of Burden: Neighborhood Watch one-shot (Dark Horse), by Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson
- Hawkeye #1 (Marvel), by Matt Fraction and David Aja
- MIND MGMT #3 (Dark Horse), by Matt Kindt
- Swamp Thing #12 (DC Comics), by Scott Snyder and Marco Rudy
- Think Tank #1 (Image/Minotaur), by Matt Hawkins and Rahsan Ekedal
- Marvel NOW! Teases IRON MAN For November 2012 (newsarama.com)
- Kieron Gillen and Greg Land go Invincible (comicsbeat.com)
- ADVANCE REVIEW: Fraction & Aja’s “Hawkeye” #1 (comicbookresources.com)
- Jason Aaron, Esad Ribic Relaunch “The Mighty Thor” In November (comicbookresources.com)
- Mark Waid and Leinil Francis Yu are Indestructable (writing Hulk) (comicsbeat.com)
Tags: brian posehn, captain america, Deadpool, esad ribic, Fantastic Four, ff, gerry duggan, greg land, Hulk, Iron Man, jason aaron, John Romita Jr, kieron gillen, leinil yu, Mark Bagley, mark waid, Marvel, Marvel NOW!, Matt Fraction, mike allred, Rick Remender, simon spurrier, tan eng huat, Thor, tony moore, x-men, x-men legacy