Marvel formally unveiled its post-Secret Wars 'All New, All Different' line up on Wednesday, featuring a Marvel Universe reconfigured by the experiences of Battleworld, and an eight month time jump that allows the publisher to set up a new status quo for many of its characters. Marvel has never had a better opportunity to shake up its line, so readers had high expectations for a bold, diverse, inventive new direction. With that in mind, we're going to share the new titles with you, alongside some observations on how the new Marvel Universe is shaping up, starting with the X-Men.
A lot of fans weren't sure there would still be an X-Men line coming out of Secret Wars, or that it would still share space with the rest of the main Marvel Universe, given that Fox's control of various licensing rights has led Marvel to step back from heavily promoting these characters. But the X-Men still sell comics, and Marvel is in that business, so the X-Men haven't entirely gone away, though the line is down to only six titles, with just three team books and three solo books.
All-New X-MenDennis Hopeless (W), Mark Bagley (A)
The relaunched continuation of Brian Michael Bendis's All-New X-Men title, focused on the time-tossed junior original X-Men. Bendis's decision to bump up the number of women on this 1960s team has suffered a backslide, as Jean has moved to another book, but X-23 is still around in her new Wolverine identity, and Angel now has fancy new Archangel wings, continuing the fifty-plus year struggle to make the kid with wings seem useful when everyone else can fly without them. If, like me, you thought the junior X-Men would go back to their own time eventually, it's probably time to let go of that belief.
Extraordinary X-MenJeff Lemire (W), Humberto Ramos (A)
So here's young Jean Grey, and old Logan, alongside the present day Iceman, Colossus, Magik, Nightcrawler and Storm. As I noted in the announcement earlier this week, with the Ultimates Universe gone, I'm pulling for this version of Colossus to join Iceman in coming out and for the two of them to become a couple, but even without that potentially awesome development, this is a roster that looks a lot like my ideal of a queer-ish 'found family' X-Men team, and I'm on board for that.
DeadpoolGerry Duggan (W), Mike Hawthorne (A), Tony Moore (CA)
Essentially a continuation of a book that has no reason not to keep on keeping on. DC has Harley Quinn; Marvel has Deadpool. It works.
All-New WolverineTom Taylor (W), David Lopez (A), David Marquez (CA)
Not the old man, but the young woman, Laura Kinney, donning the blue and yellow to take up her father's legacy. Not that he's dead, you understand, or even really her father. I mean, he did die, but he's not dead. Lopez is a great fit, and Taylor is clearly one of a handful of new writers that Marvel is investing in for the future.
Old Man LoganJeff Lemire (W), Andrea Sorrentino (A)
I really don't understand Marvel's attachment to this version of the character, but after making Steve Rogers an old man so that he can mentor his replacement, Marvel clearly decided it was worth doing again, and it's certainly a way to get around the idea that Wolverine wouldn't be back in a hurry. Don't get me wrong; this is Wolverine coming back, and it hasn't been very long since he died (it'll be about a year by the time this book comes out), but he's not the exact same Wolverine that died, and Marvel sure does love a rhetorical loophole!
Uncanny X-MenCullenn Bunn (W), Greg Land (A)
This looks very much like an X-Force kind of roster; Magneto, Sabertooth, Psylocke, Mystique and Fantomex, a political radical with four trained assassins. But X-Force probably doesn't sell as well as a title as Uncanny X-Men. This book should serve as a de facto continuation of Bunn's Magneto.