Logan is in cinemas this week, and everyone's going crazy for the even-more grizzled and even more violent take on Wolverine. While the film is loosely based on Old Man Logan, a Mark Millar and Steve McNiven tale from several years ago, the comics incarnation has taken on a life of his own in recent years.

Marvel has announced Ed Brisson and Mike Deodato as the new creative team on Old Man Logan title, pitting the dystopian-future version of Wolverine against The Maestro, a version of The Hulk from a very different dystopian future.

The original "Old Man Logan" story took place in the pages of Wolverine #66-72, plus a Giant Size special due to delays, and featured a world where the villains had killed all the superheroes, and tricked Wolverine into killing The X-Men. Fifty years on, Logan hasn't popped his claws again, but a cross-country delivery trip to raise funds for his family's farm puts him in more danger than ever before.

The character of Old Man Logan found himself a player during Secret Wars, in a five-part miniseries by Brian Michael Bendis and Andrea Sorrentino, which took the character on a whistlestop tour of the event's patchwork Battleworld, before dropping him off at the event's climactic battle. Old Man Logan was one of the few characters who survived the event and landed on Earth-616 (I will never call it Earth Prime, Tom Brevoort), where the local version of Wolverine/Logan is dead. Old Man Logan has since joined the X-Men and had solo adventures in the current ongoing by Jeff Lemire, Sorrentino and other fill-in artists.

 

Mike Deodato / Marvel Comics

 

The new creative team of Ed Brisson and Mike Deodato take over Old Man Logan with the 25h issue, and by pitting him against The Maestro from Peter David and George Perez's classic Hulk: Future Imperfect, the creative team has set up a direct parallel with the original Millar/McNiven tale. At the climax of the original story, Bruce Banner's inbred clan of Hulks murdered Logan's family, which led to Wolverine popping his claws and taking on a redneck hillbilly Hulk and killing him from the inside.

The Maestro is a very different Hulk, but after arriving in Old Man Logan's future, he recruits the remaining members of The Hulk gang and travels to the present to cause all sorts of problems for Logan. In an interview with Comicvine, Brisson dug into The Maestro's motives and reasons for recruiting what remains of the Hulk Gang.

We'll see how he got to be in the Prime Universe and why he's rolling with the Hulk Gang. Maestro is NOT a fan of Wasteland Banner. To him, that Banner is the worst possible outcome for Bruce Banner. And that wasted potential fuels his anger.

Even though the Hulk Gang are not the Maestro's children, he's taken them on as though they were. As we've seen in Future Imperfect, Maestro is ready to take on Hulks to help him run things. He's willing to share the glory--or at least claims he is. Not everything is always initially as seems when it comes to the Maestro.

The Maestro himself has been a big player behind the scenes since Secret Wars, and was one of the main bad guys in the short-lived but incredibly fun Contest of Champions video game tie-in. What his presence on Earth-616 means for Logan,we'll have to wait until June to find out.