I had absolutely no interest in Marvel’s Gwenpool Special #1 when it was announced. I like Spider-Gwen a whole lot, but what looked like essentially a gender-bent Deadpool in pink? Yeah, the best I could come up with was a shrug at the news that this random mash-up character would be getting a holiday issue.
Which is why I’m quite honestly shocked that I liked Gwenpool Special #1. I liked it a lot.
Kamala Khan is an Avenger now, and that's pretty great. Miles Morales is also an Avenger now, and that's great too. And, of course, Jane Foster is Thor, and Sam Wilson is Captain America, and Vision is Vision, and Sam Alexander is Nova, and... well, Tony Stark is still Iron Man, I think. But I'd be happy if they replaced that guy too, because replacing those other heroes has honestly made this one of the most exciting and vibrant Avengers line-ups in years! Let's replace Tony Stark with America Chavez!
But even with boring ol' Tony sticking around, I am on board for this team, and hopefully you are too. But in case you need convincing, here's an unlettered preview of All-New All-Different Avengers #1 by Mark Waid and Mahmud Asrar!
Superheroes meant a great deal to my sense of queer identity when I was growing up. The men were rarely drawn as sex symbols, but their athleticism and close male friendships were as close to homoeroticism as the culture allowed me. The presence of strange outsider heroes like Cloak and Dagger, the X-Men, and even DP7, combined with the fantasy of superhuman champions fighting on behalf of the weak and oppressed, made superheroes integral to my sense of self-worth when everything else conspired to tell me I was worthless.
With this new series of columns, 'Super', I'm going to look at some of the questions arising at the intersection of LGBTQ identity and superhero fiction, starting with a really vital one. Why isn't there a gay Ms Marvel?
You know how much we love cosplay at ComicsAlliance; we put a spotlight on it every week. Fans who create their own costumes and dress up as their favorite heroes are some of the most passionate and enthusiastic people in comics, and the level of talent and committment on display at conventions seems to get more impressive every year. If there isn't a Carol Corps cosplay meet-up or a whole dang Spider-Verse at a show, you'll probably go home disappointed.
So it's great to see Marvel paying tribute to these fans with a selection of cosplay variant covers on several of its All-New All-Different launches this fall. The Marvel Cosplay variants place fans of Spider-Gwen, Daredevil, Doctor Strange, Thor (both versions) and more on the covers of the books they love. Cosplay connoisseurs will see some familiar faces among the cosplayers, including Birds of Play's Amanda Lynne Shafer, cosplay legend Yaya Han, and Marvel's own in-house cosplay blogger Judy Stephens as Captain Marvel.
We already knew Lego Marvel's Avengers would have the biggest roster of any Lego game developed by TT Games to date, but we still don't know the exact character list. During Gamescom this week, TT revealed a few of these new cast members with in-game models for the first time, giving us a better idea of who and what to expect. While your standard Avengers have all but been confirmed (at least as far as the movie roster is concerned), there's a whole lot of Marvel heroes and villains that have yet to have their shot at Lego fame and glory.
During San Diego Comic-Con, TT actually teased a few of these characters, including Kamala "Ms. Marvel" Khan and the Jane Foster Thor, but this is the first time we've seen Squirrel Girl and the Young Avengers' Speed. Most importantly, Ms. Marvel's Lego-fied version actually looks like Kamala Khan. After the America Chavez incident, it's good to see TT Games is actually on point with its representation of the character, and fans won't have to cry out in hopes of having Ms. Khan recolored.
When you think of the term superhero, what instinctively comes to mind? Is it a straight white man with bulging muscles and a scarlet cape? Or a brooding vigilante with an aggressive streak and a heart of gold? Whatever your thoughts on mainstream superheroes, Kamala Khan, otherwise known as Ms. Marvel, effortlessly dismantles them.
Debuting on this day in 2013 in a cameo in the pages of Captain Marvel, the Pakistani American Muslim teenager quickly became one of the most honest and relatable heroes in the Marvel pantheon.
Our round-up of the All-New All-Different Marvel titles concludes with the books that don't quite fit anywhere else. This is the catch-all category that Marvel tends to call things like 'Marvel Universe', or 'Marvel Knights', or 'Marvel Heroes'. That makes this sound like a clearing house, and the presence of Agents of SHIELD supports that case, but you'll also find some of Marvel's most important titles here; titles that just don't quite fit elsewhere.
Popular comics and entertainment news site The Wall Street Journal offered the exclusive confirmation this morning on the new post-Secret Wars Avengers roster and creative team, already outlined but not formally confirmed by one of the Marvel Free Comic Book Day offerings earlier this year. As expected, the book will be written by Mark Waid with art by Mahmud Asrar, with the addition of artist Adam Kubert on alternating arcs. The team members are exactly as outlined in the FCBD comic, with no surprises; Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, Vision, Spider-Man, Ms Marvel and Nova.
Although cosplay has been present for decades within the comics, anime, and sci-fi/fantasy fandoms, social media has played an integral role in the thriving communities of costuming that exist, such as Cosplay.com and the Superhero Costuming Forum. Over the years, the cosplay community has evolved into a creative outlet for many fans to establish and showcase some impressive feats of homemade disguise, craftsmanship, and sartorial superheroics at conventions.
In honor of the caped crusaders of the convention scene, ComicsAlliance has created Best Cosplay Ever (This Week), an ongoing collection of some of the most impeccable, creative, and clever costumes that we’ve discovered and assembled into a super-showcase of pure fan-devoted talent.
Kamala Khan is a superstar now. Introduced only a year ago by Marvel, she’s become a bona fide figurehead for the publisher. A young Muslim girl in America who develops powers and uses them to try and help people, her story has caught on with a mainstream audience and turned the Ms Marvel series into a real, actual hit, especially among the growing digital readership.
What’s fascinating about the character, though, is how clearly she’s embedded into the tradition of superhero comics, and how you can draw a direct line from her back through Marvel’s history, to some of the company's most popular female superheroes. Kamala broke through at just the right moment in time, in just the right way, for the readership to embrace her, but she owes a debt to several characters that came before her.
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