Marvel Comics has been teasing this year’s big Spider-Man event “Dead No More” for months now, with teasers indicating the return of many beloved supporting characters and villains including Doctor Octopus, Uncle Ben and Gwen Stacy. Today, however, the true name and nature of the event has been revealed in the form of a standalone miniseries titled “The Clone Conspiracy” by Dan Slott and Jim Cheung.
Civil War II is upon us, and all of our favorite Marvel books are going to be subsumed by a conflict that pits hero against hero, sister against brother, and Avenger against Avenger. To keep track of the moral quagmire, we at ComicsAlliance will be following events closely to determine which side is right in this ethically grey debate.
This first month sees the playing field established with two prelude issues and today’s big, life-altering Civil War II #1. New characters are introduced, classic characters die, and lines are drawn in the sand as the principal players take their positions and prepare for war.
The Marvel Comics line is about mid-way through its giant line-wide crossover event Secret Wars, in which reality has been rewritten by god-emperor Doom, and the heroes have been re-imagined more than a dozen times over in different domains paying tribute to stories from throughout Marvel's publishing history.
One of those domains is a version of House of M, another reality-rewriting crossover event that cast the Marvel heroes in different roles, which ran ten years ago. House of M launched the current era of Marvel events, kicking off a steady steam of universe-shaking storylines that continues into Secret Wars. To mark the tenth anniversary of House of M, and ten years of event-driven storytelling, we're asking you to determine which of these events was the very best.
Not everyone can make it to San Diego Comic-Con to see what's happening in person, but ComicsAlliance has you covered! We know that it's not just about the news that comes out of the biggest con of the year --- it's also about seeing the booths, checking out new collectibles, and putting faces to names of your favorite creators. Thankfully talented photographer Pat Loika is on hand to document as much as he can for your enjoyment.
If you needed any further proof that Marvel is now fully a part of the Walt Disney Company family, look no further than a new collaboration with ESPN (also a subsidiary of Disney).
A group of Marvel artists --- Alex Maleev, Sara Pichelli, Emanuela Lupacchino, Lenil Francis Yu, Frank Cho, Russell Dauterman, Mike Deodato, Jim Cheung and Greg Land --- have contributed original art of Daredevil, Captain Marvel, Medusa, Luke Cage, She-Hulk, Iron Fist, Iron Man, The Hulk and Ant-Man to a "superhero edition" of ESPN Magazine's famous "Body Issue," an annual celebration of athletic physiques (with lots of pictures of naked people).
For years, Mattel's Hot Wheels line has been bringing the very best comic book and superhero vehicles to life. We've gotten dozens of different Batmobiles over the years, and characters like the Avengers and Spider-Man have gotten their own vehicles with cool designs and paint jobs for almost as long as Hot Wheels has been in existence. At this year's San Diego Comic Con, that trend will continue with an exclusive Secret Wars-themed three-pack.
Featuring Captain America (Sam Wilson), Superior Iron Man, and Spider-Man (Miles Morales), the Hot Wheels Marvel Secret Wars Character Car 3-Pack will give each of these characters their own new model of sophisticated auto-weirdness. They'll also all come in a window box display, showing the cars in action as if they were the heroes themselves. For reasons.
We're already quite excited about A-Force, the new Avengers team from writers G. Willow Wilson and Marguerite Bennett, and artist Jorge Molina, that brings together some of Marvel's all-time greatest heroes as perhaps the greatest super-team of all time, including Captain Marvel, Dazzler, America Chavez, Nico Minoru, Spider-Gwen, and She-Hulk. Now we're especially excited because of this unlettered preview that shows them fighting sharks.
Each week, ComicsAlliance’s Chris Sims and Matt Wilson host the War Rocket Ajax podcast, their online audio venue for interviews with comics creators, reviews of the books of the week, and whatever else they want to talk about. ComicsAlliance is offering clips of the comics-specific segments of the show several days before the full podcast goes up at WarRocketAjax.com on Mondays.
This week, Chris and Matt are offering up some extended reviews of DC Comics' Secret Origins #1 by Greg Pak, Lee Weeks, Kyle Higgins, Doug Mahnke, Tony Bedard, and Paulo Siqueria, and Marvel's Original Sin #0 by Mark Waid and Jim Cheung.
And lo, we come to the end of another epic Marvel crossover event and -- quick head count -- it looks like all the black characters are still alive. If it's dead minority superheroes you're looking for, you'll have to go read Uncanny Avengers instead. Sorry, gang.
In fact, the Avengers' cosmic war-on-two-fronts is surprisingly light on a body count, which is the usual way the PR guys tell us that the stories matter. So now that Jonathan Hickman's Infinity is, paradoxically, over, did all that kerfuffle tell us anything profound about the human condition? And were the Jim Cheung fight scenes good?
When Marvel announced that this year's big summer event comic was called Infinity, I considered faking my own death. I mean, it sounds a bit much, doesn't it? "Infinity?" As in, "having no end?" Didn't we already do that with Secret Invasion? Still, an event with no ending is good news for whichever minority character was meant to die in the last chapter.
But it turns out Infinity is actually a pretty tight sprawl, as sprawls go. The main series is six issues. The story spills over into six issues of Avengers and four issues of New Avengers. And everything else will tie-in somehow, because, hey kid, nice wallet you got there, be a shame if something happened to it.
So I didn't fake my own death! I'm here, present and correct, to provide ComicsAlliance's exclusive and totally spoiler-riddled guide to Infinity: ComicsAlliance x Infinity! It'll be over before you know it.