Guardians Of The Galaxy just enjoyed a very successful weekend at movie theaters, taking home around $94m, far in excess of expectations. The movie also stands at 92% positive reviews on aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes, joining all previous Marvel Studios movies in receiving predominantly favorable notices.
Marvel Studios is doing very well. In six years and ten movies, it has avoided both critical and commercial disasters, and frustrated naysayers who hailed the demise of the superhero movie at every step. Marvel's rivals at Fox, Sony Columbia, and Warner Bros, have enjoyed commercial success as well -- but not with the acclaim, consistency, or proliferation of Marvel. So how does Marvel do it, and can they keep doing it?
Saga co-creator Fiona Staples is one of the best cover artists in the industry, so it's no surprise that Marvel should want to borrow some of her magic for their new Thor series, by Jason Aaron and Russell Dauterman. And it's no surprise that the result is awesome, with the new Thor wielding the mighty Mjolnir to smash a frost giant right in his big frosty face.
Marvel is committing fully to Angela with the character's first ongoing series, Angela: Asgard's Assassin, which comes with yet more surprises. It's a solo title starring a female lead, which of course is still rare in American superhero comics, and it's also drawn by Phil Jimenez, whose long association with certain amazon princesses and other distinctly powerful women characters sends a very loud and clear message about Marvel's intentions for Angela.
Joining Jimenez is writer Kieron Gillen, himself one of Marvle's most acclaimed Asgardian scholars, if you will, having done very well regarded runs on Journey Into Mystery and Thor. Also writing Angela is Marguerite Bennett, who's penned numerous books for DC and other publishers, but who this year landed two ongoings in the form of Angela and the recently announced Sleepy Hollow. As part of the book's unique "stories-within-stories" structure that you'll read about below, Bennett will collaborate with noted cover artist and illustrator Stephanie Hans, who's making a relatively rare visit to the realm of sequential storytelling to help make Angela that much more distinct.
ComicsAlliance spoke with all four creators and series editor Wil Moss about the endlessly impressive surprise that is Angela.
Asgard already boasts an unlikely agent in the form of young trickster god Loki. Now it has an unlikely assassin as well, as Loki's sis from another exis(tence), Angela, gets her own solo title this November, Angela: Asgard's Assassin.
The new series by writers Kieron Gillen and Margeurite Bennett and artists Phil Jimenez and Stephanie Hans was announced at the Avengers NOW panel at San Diego Comic-Con on Friday -- the same panel where Al Ewing and Luke Ross's Captain America And The Mighty Avengers was unveiled.
On Tuesday morning Whoopi Goldberg and the hosts of The View announced that Marvel will relaunch Thor this October with a 'worthy' woman brandishing the hammer. Marvel followed that announcement with two more high profile switcheroos on Wednesday night as Entertainment Weekly revealed a new-ish and possibly superior Iron Man, and Marvel Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada joined comedian Stephen Colbert on The Colbert Report to announce that a new guy will take up Captain America's shield.
That in itself isn't much of a surprise -- original Cap Steve Rogers has passed on his mantle a few times, before eventually yanking it back. After spending some time in Dimension Z and fighting the Iron Nail and whatnot, he's now too old to Avenge from the front lines. The big reveal is that the new Captain America will be Sam Wilson, the African-American superhero currently known as Falcon.
Marvel chose daytime talk show The View as the venue to reveal its latest female-led solo title; a new Thor ongoing series from current Thor writer Jason Aaron and current Cyclops artist Russell Dauterman. If you're wondering how Thor can be a female-led solo title, well, grab a seat chum. Thor is a lady now.
This is not the first time a son of Odin has become the old man's daughter, but when Loki spent time as a woman it was because he stole the body of the warrior Sif, and as a shapeshifting trickster he can probably do it whenever he wants. Not so Thor; Marvel says that this is "a brand new female hero" rather than the old Thor after a magical (or even non-magical) transformation.
The Marvel Unlimited app is a gigantic, messy cache of awesome and terrible old comic books: a library of 13,000 or so back issues of Marvel titles, available on demand for subscribers with tablets or mobile phones. Like any good back-room longbox, it's disorganized and riddled with gaps, but it's also full of forgotten and overlooked jewels, as well as a few stone classics. In Marvel Unlimited Edition, Eisner-winning critic Douglas Wolk dives into the Unlimited archive to find its best, oddest and most intriguing comics.
In today's edition: Who needs Godzilla when you've got Fin Fang Foom? One of the most ridiculous of the many monsters Stan Lee and Jack Kirby dreamed up in the pre-Fantastic Four era, the giant green (or maybe orange) dragon was first revived in 1974, and has shown up on a fairly regular basis over the past couple of decades. Sometimes (as in Kurt Busiek and Sean Chen's Iron Man) he's taken very seriously; sometimes (as in Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen's nextwave) he's not. Here are some of his most entertaining appearances in the Unlimited archives.
Q:What is the best redemption scene or storyline in comics? -- @yellfeat
A: It's funny, I was just talking about why there aren't a whole lot of stories where villains become heroes in the latest episode of Here's The Thing, and how they almost never work out the way you want them to. That might've been my pessimism creeping in, because there are certainly examples of it working really well -- one viewer on Twitter mentioned the Pied Piper from Flash -- but I blame the wording. A face turn and a redemption aren't quite the same thing, and if you're looking for the single best example of the latter, there's not even a question about which one it is.
Skurge stood alone at Gjallerbru, man. And that was enough.
A new version of Disney Infinity is coming this fall, and it's going to focus completely on Marvel superheroes. Iron Man, Black Widow, Thor, Captain America, Hulk and Hawkeye, the team from the first Avengers movie, will be the first batch of heroes available in Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes. There will be 20 playable figures released in all, with potentially more to follow.
Not only that, but the Marvel version of the game will feature stories written by Brian Michael Bendis.
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