‘Logan 2’? Revisiting Mark Millar’s Forgotten Sequel To ‘Old Man Logan’
Since arriving in the mainstream Marvel Universe following Secret Wars, Old Man Logan has taken on a life of his own as a standout solo star, and his adventures beyond the original eight issues have been expanded upon in great detail.
However, what a lot of people forget is that Mark Millar actually wrote a sequel to “Old Man Logan” at the same time as he was writing the original, as part of an experimental attempt to link his work-for-hire superhero comics with his own creator-owned franchises.
As Mark Millar and Steve McNiven were working on “Old Man Logan” in the pages of Wolverine, Millar was also working on Fantastic Four with his Ultimates collaborator Bryan Hitch. One of the biggest plot points was the arrival of the New Defenders, a team of heroes from the future who had come back in time to try and find a solution for their overpopulated and dying Earth.
The New Defenders comprised of Lightwave, Alex Ultron, Psionics, Natalie X, The Hooded Man, and a descendant of The Hulk named Robert Bruce Banner. However, in the pages of Fantastic Four #561, The Hooded Man is forced into a confrontation with The Thing and pops his claws, revealing him to be a future incarnation of Wolverine — although the full connection to “Old Man Logan” wouldn’t be readily apparent for nearly a year.
The revelation about The Hooded Man came at a time when “Old Man Logan” was only four issues in, and it wasn’t immediately obvious that there was a connection. However, the climax of Millar and McNiven’s “Old Man Logan” sees the former Wolverine killing The Hulk clan and adopting their youngest, Bruce Banner Jr, as his own son to help him bring law back to a lawless land.
The implication here is that The Hooded Man and Robert Bruce Banner of the New Defenders are Old Man Logan and baby Bruce Banner Jr. all grown up.
That’s not the only weird link either, as Millar was writing two other comics for Marvel at the time, each with their own connections to this larger meta-story. In the pages of Fantastic Four he had introduced a new villain named The Marquis of Death, who supposedly taught Doctor Doom everything he knew about being a bad ‘un. The Marquis of Death, was a twisted future version of a man named Clyde Wyncham, who Millar introduced in the pages of 1985 — and this is where things get really weird.
1985 was set ostensibly in our universe, except Clyde Wyncham was the only mutant ever to manifest. He was rendered brain-damaged after his mother struck him for using his powers, and while in an institution he used those powers to bring heroes from Marvel Comics into the real world. He was eventually brought to the Marvel Universe by Reed Richards, who used him to defeat his alternate-future evil self.
The really weird part is that Mark Millar was writing another comic set in a world that was ostensibly our universe; you may have heard of it, it’s called Kick-Ass. As surprising as it is, 1985 and Kick-Ass take place in the same world, which means at some point the heroes of the Marvel Universe invaded the real world and the government covered it up.
As for The Hooded Man, he and the New Defenders — now named Fantastic Force — relocated their ailing population to Nu-World, but were hunted through time by Gaea, the manifestation of Mother Earth driven insane by the mass-abandonment of her people. Ultimately, The Hooded Man returned to his home time and offered his healing factor to Gaea to help repair the world and return it to its former glory. He’s also implied to have fathered a child with her.
The current Old Man Logan series from Marvel doesn’t reference this future for the character at all, but the stories don’t do anything to discount it either. When time comes for “Young” Man Logan to return to comics and send his replacement packing, there’s every chance that Old Man Logan slots right back into his established timeline, which results in his impregnating the Earth.
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