Big changes are coming from the House of Ideas. Fan favorite writers and artists are leaving titles after lengthy runs. ”The Architects” are the publisher’s brand for their stable of marquee writers. Just like the ever evolving X-Men or Avengers this lineup is changing too.
The Marvel NOW! announcement reveals what some creators are up to next. Marvel Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada, Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso and Executive Editor Tom Brevoort reveal what fans expect on Marvel.com today.
Who are the key players in Marvel NOW!
“Rick Remender and John Cassaday on UNCANNY AVENGERS, Brian Bendis and Stuart Immonen on ALL-NEW X-MEN, and Jonathan Hickman and Jerome Opena on AVENGERS, with Adam Kubert, Dustin Weaver and Mike Deodato also contributing to that twice-a-month series, plus Jonathan and Steve Epting on NEW AVENGERS. But this is just the tip of the iceberg,” said Brevoort.
”We’ve got a lot of great changes coming up with our creators. I think two creators that have me very excited right now are, first, Jonathan Hickman and what he’s going to be bringing to the Avengers; if you really want a very clear road map of where the Marvel Universe is going to be taking you in the next four to five years, then you cannot not read AVENGERS. You have to.
And then the other creator that has me really excited is old-time favorite Brian Bendis. Brian is working on two very significant projects for us. One of them is ALL-NEW X-MEN. I have not seen Brian this excited about writing comics in quite a long time. Between ALL-NEW X-MEN and his other secret project that he’s working on, which I think many people are going to find surprising, he is operating on all cylinders. I mean he is just a shot out of a cannon. This is like Brian Bendis circa 2002, where he’s salivating to get all the stuff that he’s doing,” Quesada added.
The editorial team revealed why UNCANNY AVENGERS is the first title launched in the initiative.
“UNCANNY AVENGERS is the first book that delivers a snapshot of the Marvel Universe in the aftermath of AvX. This is a team composed of Avengers and X-Men that’s put together to deal with a specific threat, but that eventually becomes something much more than that,” Alonso revealed.
“Back in AVENGERS VS. X-MEN #1, Captain America and Cyclops had a pointed conversation before fists started flying about how, whenever a threat to mutants has arisen, the Avengers have seemed pretty remote; Cap articulated his position, but in the fallout from AvX, Cap and the Avengers, having gone through a bunch of stuff and having walked a mile in the X-Men’s shoes, are feeling like there’s some truth in what Cyclops had to say. So the Uncanny Avengers squad is being put together as a direct response to that, as a proactive attempt to provide support of the civil rights of the world’s mutant citizens, and to provide physical and superhuman aid in those circumstances where either mutants are threatened by non-mutants, regular humans are threatened by mutants, and every other iteration in-between. In essence, as we attempt to bridge the divide between the Avengers and the X-Men as entities within our publishing world, UNCANNY X-MEN will be the primary bridging book, a place where the team is as likely to battle Apocalypse as The Red Skull, and where long-established X-characters will stand side-by-side with long-established Avengers characters, in a very public manner,” explained Brevoort.
Why is Rick Remender (Uncanny X-Force, Secret Avengers) leading the charge.
“Rick pitched the book right before one of our recent Marvel editorial retreats, as something that could naturally grow out of AvX. And we’re always looking for interesting projects to entice John into doing more work for Marvel,” Brevoort explained. Captain America, Wolverine, Thor, Rogue, Havok, Scarlet Witch are confirmed team members. The editor teased a funeral in the first issue and more surprising additions to the team.
A classic Captain America villain is back posting a threat that united the X-Men and Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
“The reborn Red Skull will have a strong anti-mutant agenda that will put him in direct opposition to the Uncanny Avengers and their mandate of attempting to inspire greater human-mutant cooperation. The new Skull will also possess a new set of powers obtained in a very creepy way, as well as his own team of foot soldiers, people whose lives were shattered by mutants who’ve been rebuilt at a genetic level to turn them into what we’ve jokingly been calling the Skull’s “S-Men,” explains Brevoort.
Brian Michael Bendis breathed new life into the Avengers franchise. Axel Alonso explains why bringing the original five X-Men into the here and now for All-New X-Men by Bendis and Stuart Immonen.
“These characters grew up aspiring to live the dream of Charles Xavier. They’re going to come into a world that’s very different from that dream. And they’re going to come face to face with what they’ve become—future versions of their very selves—or, weirder still, come to terms with the fact that they didn’t make it this far. Imagine you’re young Jean Grey and you just crash landed in 2012. Get my point?”
Alonso said the surviving mutants of AvX will join the original five in the new series.
Jonathan Hickman (Fantastic Four) moves from Marvel’s First Family to Earth’s Mightiest Heroes with Avengers and New Avengers. Artists Jerome Opena and Steve Epting join Hickman.
“First off, it’s important for you to know that, while we’re not ready to tell you any more about it, Jonathan will also be writing NEW AVENGERS as well as AVENGERS.
I mention that because the second thing you need to know is that, like AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, AVENGERS is going to be shipping twice a month. So there’ll be three Hickman-written Avengers comics coming out every 30 days—two issues of AVENGERS and one issue of NEW AVENGERS.
I can tell you that NEW AVENGERS will be an absolutely essential sister title to AVENGERS, intrinsically linked to what’s going on in that book. Together, the two will function as Black and White, Day and Night, Life and Death.
The main imperative for the Avengers coming out of AvX is a need to think bigger. Had the Avengers been better prepared, better manned, better equipped, the events of AvX might have been able to have been dealt with in a much shorter order. So we’ll be fielding a very large core team comprised of 18 or so characters—spanning the key players in the “Marvel’s The Avengers” film, mainstays of the current team such as Captain Marvel—Carol Danvers—and Spider-Woman, classic Avengers of the past such as The Falcon, some established Marvel characters of note that have never been Avengers before, and a number of completely new, though familiar, characters as well. And we’ll be keeping things in motion—not every hero will be featured in every issue and there’ll be smaller groups tasked to deal with rising situations as they crop up.
In typical fashion, Jonathan has laid out plans for literally years of stories—at our recent Editorial Retreat, I worked out that he’d broadly plotted through issue #63 at this point. And like his work on FANTASTIC FOUR and SECRET WARRIORS, the scale just gets bigger and bigger and bigger as you go, with payoff leading to payoff leading to payoff.
AVENGERS is the crown jewel of the Marvel publishing line, especially after the juggernaut success of the movie, so we’re going to be treating it as such, with the best characters, drawn by the best artists, coming out on a frequency that will help to propel story velocity and that will reward readers month after month after month in a big way,” explained Brevoort.
For more of the interview here’s the Marvel.com link.
Big questions still out there:
What books will Matt Fraction, Jason Aaron, Jeph Loeb, Cullen Bunn and Christos Gage write?
With Rocket Raccoon in the promo art and talk of a Guardians of the Galaxy movie will the Guardians have a new series?