Crisis on Infinite Gauntlets
January 21, 2015 11:23 AM   Subscribe

Don't Call it a Reboot: Marvel Confirms a Convergence of Universes in Secret Wars

Unlike its Distinguished Competition, Marvel hasn't executed any universe-shaking reboots in the past: most of the comics published through the company's 70-year history have taken place in the same continuity (albeit one where reality warping, encounters with Jack Kirby God, deals with the devil, and identical godlike alien doubles allow for plentiful retconning and the past is never more than 15 years long.)

In addition to 616, Marvel has taken forays into alternate universes, including an ongoing parallel Ultimates line. The Ultimates continuity has proven substantially less resistant to rebooting. 616 and Ultimates have crossed over before (and it was ADORABLE.) Fans have been speculating on a merger for a while now.
posted by kagredon (146 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
 
All I want is Throg. Throg. Throg. THROG.
posted by GuyZero at 11:32 AM on January 21, 2015 [5 favorites]


I have a bad feeling about this.
posted by entropicamericana at 11:32 AM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


just show me that throg-throg-throg-thr-throg
posted by kagredon at 11:33 AM on January 21, 2015 [8 favorites]


Does anyone really like giant comic events? I know they sell, so people must, but I never hear anyone get genuinely excited for them. This might be a nobody I know voted for Nixon kind of problem.

I am the opposite of excited about this. Something that feels like Crisis on Infinite Earths combined with the whole Secret Wars Battleworld nonsense? Ugh. No. Please.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 11:36 AM on January 21, 2015 [7 favorites]


Does anyone really like giant comic events? I know they sell, so people must, but I never hear anyone get genuinely excited for them.

They sell because if you want to understand WTF is going on in your favorite title, you have to read them. Nobody likes them.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 11:38 AM on January 21, 2015 [16 favorites]


Yeah, yeah, that's nice Marvel, but I'm more excited by Milestone coming back!
posted by rewil at 11:43 AM on January 21, 2015 [6 favorites]


I think once upon a time people liked them, but now that they are an annual occurrence with one bleeding into the next fatigue has well set in and it is exactly as ChurchHatesTucker wrote.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 11:44 AM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Back in my comics-buying heyday there was only one* Big Crossover Event I actually enjoyed; The Mutant Massacre. Inferno, The Evolutionary Wars, Secret Wars...all pretty meh, and even at that age I realized that it was a scam; buy this copy of [book you never, ever buy] for a half-page of action tangentially-related to the story!

* well, I also liked the original Crisis On Infinite Earths, but those were literally the only DC comics I ever read, so it was kind of a "special limited-edition issue where Radioactive Man and Fallout Boy get killed on every page!!!" situation.
posted by The Card Cheat at 11:47 AM on January 21, 2015


It's interesting to read this alongside the indications that something is wrong with time in the Marvel universe and this speculation that the endgame for all this might be a reboot that leaves the franchises Disney/Marvel doesn't currently have the film rights literally buried in the past.
posted by gerryblog at 11:48 AM on January 21, 2015 [11 favorites]


The only comics I've read recently are Captain Marvel and Hawkeye. Don't fuck those up and I'm fine. Or go ahead, I'll just stop reading and stick to the movies.

Your call, Marvel Comics, you want my money or not? 'Cause judging by this interactive map of Battleworld*, it seems you don't.

* Battleworld doesn't sound like a good name or concept.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:49 AM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


How about a universe where the Superheroes have non-White alter egos (e.g. a black Peter Parker or Reed Richards)?
posted by Renoroc at 11:54 AM on January 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


Paging Jim Shooter.
posted by Slothrup at 11:55 AM on January 21, 2015


I quickly learned to hate giant comic events when I read a bunch of DC stuff in the 80s. My favorite titles always got the living shit kicked out of their continuity. The worst wasn't an 'event' per se, but was they way Byrne fucked over Superman. Sure, Supes needed a reboot, but you didn't have to fuck the Legion over so very hard that Paul Levitz had to create a pocket universe to trap Superboy in, and then have that lead to even more bad comics decades later.

*still bitter*
posted by ursus_comiter at 11:56 AM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


It sounds weak to me too.

But.

It springs out of Jonathan Hickman's (New) Avengers run which has been pretty good (if you haven't read his Fantastic Four/FF run you're REALLY missing out)

and

More often than not I miss out on great stories because the idea sounds lame to me and then I have to play catch-up once I clue in.

So I'm not going to snark. I'll check it out and hope that I'm entertained.
posted by djeo at 11:56 AM on January 21, 2015


I don't know why comic book companies don't just periodically reset continuity instead of going back to this multiverse bullshit whenever it gets unwieldy. The nerdy need for a unified canon just makes sensible storytelling harder to accomplish.
posted by empath at 11:58 AM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


Operation "Eat Shit, FOX!"
posted by tittergrrl at 11:59 AM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


Yeah, when it comes to Big Comic Events I wait a year or two until they're done and then read the runs/arcs that are still remembered fondly, either on Marvel Unlimited or borrowed from the local library.

And since I buy the comics for the local library, this works out surprisingly well for me.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 12:00 PM on January 21, 2015 [6 favorites]


In the end, only Spider-Ham remains.
posted by ckape at 12:00 PM on January 21, 2015 [16 favorites]


My event fatigue and reservations about the concept here are butting heads pretty hard with the goodwill and benefit of the doubt Hickman has earned so I'm not quite sure what to think of this.
posted by jason_steakums at 12:00 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


*retcons empath to exist only in Earth-36*
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:01 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


a universe where the Superheroes have non-White alter egos (e.g. a black Peter Parker

Spider-Man Miles Morales and Nick Fury are both black in the Marvel Ultimate universe.
posted by Greg Nog at 12:01 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


Spider-Man Miles Morales and Nick Fury are both black in the Marvel Ultimate universe.

Also, a couple of weeks ago The Anarchic Spider-Man got added to the MU.
posted by painquale at 12:02 PM on January 21, 2015


There's got to be an easier way to retell the symbiote story with Miles Morales.

Peter Parker got his symbiote suit on Battleworld in Secret Wars II, right?
posted by elr at 12:05 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Just DON'T TOUCH KAMALA. I love her. Leave her alone. She is the best.
posted by maryr at 12:07 PM on January 21, 2015 [13 favorites]


Peter Parker got his symbiote suit on Battleworld in Secret Wars II, right?

That was Secret Wars I. II was the Beyonder faffing about being a weirdo on Earth.

Is the Beyonder back btw? I ask as someone who hasn't read superhero comics enough to follow the continuity since I was a teenager.
posted by selfnoise at 12:08 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I don't know why comic book companies don't just periodically reset continuity instead of going back to this multiverse bullshit whenever it gets unwieldy. The nerdy need for a unified canon just makes sensible storytelling harder to accomplish.

Quoting from my earlier explanation of this.

In serial fiction, there can never be a detail that is definitely unimportant. Any detail, in the hands of the right author, can be become the hook for a fantastic story... So it follows that to get maximum satisfaction from well-written serial fiction, it pays to know all of the details.

Clearly, as a series grows in length, this level of familiarity is untenable for any but the most devoted fan. Nevertheless, the narrative principles driving this obsession with continuity cannot be denied. DC Comics has tried harder than any serial fiction I know of to cut ties with their previous continuity. Over and over and over they have said, "This is it. We're starting over. There is no continuity." But writers cannot resist going back to earlier stories to find hooks for new ones.

Nor should they. It is impossible to pretend that the earlier stories don't exist and that no one knows about them. Even a story that deliberately avoids referencing earlier continuity is thereby making reference to and being influenced by that continuity.
posted by straight at 12:08 PM on January 21, 2015 [5 favorites]


I don't know why comic book companies don't just periodically reset continuity instead of going back to this multiverse bullshit whenever it gets unwieldy. The nerdy need for a unified canon just makes sensible storytelling harder to accomplish.

A multiverse keeps it from being unwieldy. That's what allows writers the space for Miles and Spider-Gwen.

Editors seem to hate it, which is apparently why we keep getting variations of Crisis.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 12:08 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


The Beyonder is on the cover of next week's New Avengers #29.
posted by hilker at 12:11 PM on January 21, 2015


Has Marvel ever had a "Push Button, Reset Universe" event before? I know they'll spin off multiple universes, but to my knowledge this is the first restart. ( I could be very wrong, I am the farthest thing from an expert)
posted by Twain Device at 12:12 PM on January 21, 2015


Heroes Reborn.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 12:15 PM on January 21, 2015


I was told that Ultimate X-Men was supposed to be the one to read if you'd never read X-Men and wanted a starting-from-scratch introduction.

I don't know if that was the actual intent, though. It turned out to be another alternate universe, and everything was just slightly (or sometimes, seriously) wrong.

I've read speculation elsewhere that this iteration of Secret Wars is supposed to bring the comics into line with the MCU and there will really be No More Mutants. It seems like such a fundamental part of X-Men though, it's hard to imagine.
posted by Foosnark at 12:18 PM on January 21, 2015


It's interesting to read this alongside the indications that something is wrong with time in the Marvel universe and this speculation that the endgame for all this might be a reboot that leaves the franchises Disney/Marvel doesn't currently have the film rights literally buried in the past.

It's an interesting conspiracy theory (right up there with Marvel is only cancelling Fantastic Four to screw Fox, nevermind it's sales are in the toilet) but I can't see Marvel screwing with X-Men that hard or Spider-Man. Fantastic Four might actually work better banished to a perpetual Silver Age. I could get behind that.

Oh well, I'll check it out after it's all over and finally available on Marvel Unlimited.
posted by davros42 at 12:18 PM on January 21, 2015


Not really, Twain Device. Heroes Reborn left the main Marvel Universe (aka Earth-616, from Alan Moore's run on Captain Britain) untouched, and shunted a relative handful of characters off to a pocket universe for a short time. This new thing would presumably alter 616's continuity more or less permanently (the "more or less" part is from the existence of universe-altering entities and artifacts such as the Cosmic Cube and the Infinity Gauntlet).
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:19 PM on January 21, 2015


An interactive map of Battleworld is available to explore on Marvel.com.

So, "Sidewise in Time", then?

Secret Wars will kick off with a zero issue for Free Comic Book Day on May 3rd, which will also contain the first part of Marvel’s Attack On Titan crossover story...

Because you demanded it!
posted by The Tensor at 12:20 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Has Marvel ever had a "Push Button, Reset Universe" event before?

No. They do have a sliding time scale which means everything (except early Captain America) has always happened about ten-fifteen years ago. So, Tony Stark was injured in Vietnam at first, but more recently it's Afganistan, etc.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 12:20 PM on January 21, 2015


Just DON'T TOUCH KAMALA. I love her. Leave her alone. She is the best.

I know it's weird to quote myself but... I'm totally serious here. I have never bought a comic before. Ever. I have a some webcomic books and couple of graphic novels, but no Marvel, no DC. I am buying the Ms. Marvel collections. I saw some panels online and thought they were amazing and now I am a person who buys comics, even if they aren't the little glossy books. I've been enjoying them enough that I am considering picking up Captain Marvel and maybe Hawkguy because those also look awesome on stupid Tumblrs. This is new for me. I am a new revenue stream.

DO NOT MESS WITH KAMALA KHAN.
posted by maryr at 12:20 PM on January 21, 2015 [18 favorites]


I don't know if that was the actual intent, though. It turned out to be another alternate universe, and everything was just slightly (or sometimes, seriously) wrong.

They started off with that premise, but the possibilities of doing a zillion crossovers to try to bring readers from one line into the other was just too strong, and eventually the Ultimate line was turned into being "just" a major alternate universe as opposed to a separate Thing entirely.

Sigh.
posted by Tomorrowful at 12:22 PM on January 21, 2015


Fantastic Four might actually work better banished to a perpetual Silver Age. I could get behind that.

Oh, yeah. The 4 board their ship and fly off into the World Explody Nexus or whatever in order to Save Everybody. They later show up exclusively in 4 color Giant Size annuals and have to deal with giant monsters from underground and communists.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 12:22 PM on January 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


Just DON'T TOUCH KAMALA. I love her. Leave her alone. She is the best.

Relax. She's an Inhuman (which Disney has the rights to) and not a Mutant (which Fox does), so she'll be fine.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 12:24 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


As long as the Beyonder keeps his white suit with the big puffy sleeves and power shoulders I am completely fine with this.
posted by benzenedream at 12:25 PM on January 21, 2015 [5 favorites]


But writers cannot resist going back to earlier stories to find hooks for new ones.
Nor should they. It is impossible to pretend that the earlier stories don't exist and that no one knows about them. Even a story that deliberately avoids referencing earlier continuity is thereby making reference to and being influenced by that continuity.


My favorite version of this so far is Grant Morrison's resurrection of The Batman Of Zur-En-Arrh as an unmoored fever-dream alter-ego.
posted by Greg Nog at 12:27 PM on January 21, 2015 [9 favorites]


In the end, only Spider-Ham remains.

We may laugh, but Peter Porker has been killing it over in the Spider-Verse event. Ham needs to team up with his battle-buddy Miguel O'Hara in the Spider-Man 2099 book and settle in as Marvel's Lethal Joke Character (who isn't Squirrel Girl).

I am enjoying the Spider-Verse event; I would enjoy it 100% more if it had much less newbie-villain monologuing and a lot more stuff people actually care about, like snarky spider-people hanging out and/or punching each other. (Punching SpOck. PUNCH HIM IN THE FACE)

A Marvel reboot will probably make me dissatisfied on several levels, but I am choosing to interpret it as "burning the corpse of Brand New Day and salting the ashes," to which I must say HOORAY.
posted by nicebookrack at 12:27 PM on January 21, 2015 [5 favorites]


I can't see Marvel screwing with X-Men that hard or Spider-Man. Fantastic Four might actually work better banished to a perpetual Silver Age.

The thing about X-Men is that even if Cyclops et. al. are banished to the past, you'd still have the next generation(s) of mutants which Marvel wouldn't have any movie rights for. Either that, or something happens so there are no more mutants, which would mean the X-Men had lost their battle and the current stories are in that mutantless future they were always trying to prevent.
posted by straight at 12:28 PM on January 21, 2015


Also, there's been a lot of speculation (and no little amount of anger) WRT the rumors that Marvel is promoting the properties that it has the film rights to in the comics over the ones that it doesn't, but there's no real evidence of that, unless you don't like what they're currently doing with Spider-Man or the X-Men and would prefer to attribute that to a conspiracy rather than bad writing or editorial fiat. They are promoting the Inhumans, which oddly aren't considered part of the Fantastic Four characters that Fox has the rights to (despite appearing there first and repeatedly over the decades), and there's some speculation that they may effectively take the place of the X-Men in the Marvel Studios films (there's still no word AFAIK as to whether the Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch in the next Avengers installment will be mutants (as they originally were, and are in the X-Men films), Inhumans (since mutants haven't been mentioned in the Marvel Studios films), or something else.

(and to non-comics nerds: if you think that that's complicated, ah ha ha oh baby you have no idea)
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:29 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


It would be kind of unfortunate to relegate the X-Men to the past as their core concept is such a metaphor for the civil rights struggle, and there's too much relegating real civil rights struggles to the past in reality.
posted by jason_steakums at 12:32 PM on January 21, 2015 [6 favorites]


Also it's still super weird to me that we're in a place where it's plausible that Marvel would be like "eh, fuck it, the X-Men you know and love don't take place in the present day of our continuity" and The Avengers are the fresh young hotness. I am totally on board with The Avengers as the hotter property of the two, it's just a turn of events I'd never have seen coming for most of my life.
posted by jason_steakums at 12:36 PM on January 21, 2015 [7 favorites]


I think I still have most of the first Secret Wars books in a box somewhere...I'm unreasonably excited about this.
posted by Kreiger at 12:39 PM on January 21, 2015


(there's still no word AFAIK as to whether the Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch in the next Avengers installment will be mutants (as they originally were, and are in the X-Men films), Inhumans (since mutants haven't been mentioned in the Marvel Studios films), or something else.

They were just retconned in the comics as not being related to Magneto (which was itself a retcon) so my money is on Inhumans.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 12:39 PM on January 21, 2015


So is the final issue cover in the series going to be Cap holding a dead Ms. Marvel in his arms?
posted by bonehead at 12:41 PM on January 21, 2015


Sup is the universe's are melding, does that mean that now Captain America will be a jingoistic asshole? That Hulk is a cannibal? That Black Widow is now a nihilistic traitor? 'Cause if so I'll pass.

Also, I thought they pretty much killed everybody in the Ultimate Universe already in some big fight?
posted by happyroach at 12:42 PM on January 21, 2015


Oh god this reboot means that Dan Slott's going to timey-wimey ball his pet Superior Spider-Ass into the present to play with forever, doesn't it. Doesn't it.

P.S. remember Marvel, if you wipe out the Clone Saga, the nostalgic '90s kids will come after you, WE WILL COME FOR YOUR HOUSES AND FLUFFY PETS
posted by nicebookrack at 12:44 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


Sup is the universe's are melding, does that mean that now Captain America will be a jingoistic asshole? That Hulk is a cannibal? That Black Widow is now a nihilistic traitor? 'Cause if so I'll pass.

Now now, they haven't announced how many books Remender is writing yet...
posted by kalimac at 12:44 PM on January 21, 2015


This doesn't bother me for a few reasons:

1) Because, like every other Multiverse-Shaking Comic Book Event, all it takes is a writer down the road rewriting things to wipe unpleasant aspects off the map. If it bombs, in part or in whole, it can be undone.

2) Because it's going to give a glimpse or two at some of the downright funky corners of Marvel lore. Look at the map of Battleworld as it's been revealed so far. A piece of Duckworld, a horrific meta-comic that was released on a bet, Killraven's apocalyptic New Mars and the bizarre 1970s swords-and-sorcery Weirdworld are neighbors. How can some writer not have some fun with that?

3) Because they're making a point that they're NOT trying to render all of their history null and void. When they're done banging all the toys together there will be differences, but they're not starting absolutely everything over at #1 with all-new, all-different personalities and backstories. There will be some major changes and fans of certain properties will be undoubtably disappointed, but all in all they shouldn't have to spend the first two years of the new and improved universe explaining everyone and everything in it.

4) Because every attempt to rewrite literary history is futile because of its very nature -- it's written and finite. You can tell me that in some new world the Elf With a Gun never gunned down random strangers, that Thanos was never turned to granite by an avenging Adam Warlock spirit, that Luke Cage never busted into Doctor Doom's throne room to collect a bill, that two Frogs of Thunder never soared through the sky in the name of justice, but screw that; I have the books right here that say otherwise, and I can reread them any time I like.

also oh please oh please oh PLEASE let "The City" on that map be a certain nigh-invulnerable's insect's hometown somehow
posted by delfin at 12:44 PM on January 21, 2015 [6 favorites]


P.S. remember Marvel, if you wipe out the Clone Saga, the nostalgic '90s kids will come after you, WE WILL COME FOR YOUR HOUSES AND FLUFFY PETS

Wait, the Clone Saga is being remembered fondly now? Obviously I woke up in the wrong universe this morning.
posted by entropicamericana at 12:46 PM on January 21, 2015 [20 favorites]


Battleworld is, just, the dumbest possible name.
posted by Itaxpica at 12:53 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


Why doesn't "All My Children" ever have these problems?
posted by OldReliable at 12:55 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


Can't they just destroy the entire ultimates universe except for Miles Morales and then call it a day? That's what everyone wants, anyway.

I tend to only read second tier Marvel comics, which tend to avoid getting pulled into crossover events, but this is making me nervous.
posted by dinty_moore at 12:56 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


A multiverse keeps it from being unwieldy.

I don't get this idea at all. What would really keep things from being "unwieldy" (i.e. vulnerable to pedantic complaints about inconsistency?) would be the simple recognition that fiction is fiction, which means refusing the demand that the basic continuity of a given story be literalized into the perfect metaphysical self-consistency of an imagined "universe." The idea of a "multiverse" or a "canon" in this maximalist sense is really just a consequence of a perversely absolute literalism. And that kind of literalism can be fun too, lord knows it's apparently an indispensable part of nerd culture, but it only remains fun for as long as it helps tell cool stories; it really should be ignored when it becomes a rote obligation.
posted by RogerB at 12:57 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


I immediately made the Crisis connection when I first saw this come up. I couldn't believe that the first two articles I read didn't go anywhere near that comparison. It left me suspecting a payoff (in the form of access or swag or something, since Marvel would never pony up enough money to pay off anyone without a court order...).

That aside: I am so desperately tired of heroes fighting each other. For that reason alone, I have bought almost no Marvel comics since the atrocity that was Civil War.

And if this pulls even one small brick off the Tower of Awesome that is Ms. Marvel, I'mma fucking riot, yo.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 12:57 PM on January 21, 2015


Wait, the Clone Saga is being remembered fondly now?

TL;DR Nobody really loved the Clone Saga; a lot of people really love the clone characters. Nice Clone Ben Reilly is STILL super-popular and he's been dead longer (IRL) than Jason Todd. And Grumpy Clone Kaine was recently redeemed by writer Chris Yost into having the hands-down strongest spider-book that nobody read while Peter Parker was dead and SpOck was an asshole.
posted by nicebookrack at 1:01 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


I don't think that Marvel is dumb enough to mess with Ms. Marvel, BTW. The book has been selling ridiculously well, and has been considered responsible for the 'we can sell comics to teenage girls!' reverberations felt for the last six months.
posted by dinty_moore at 1:03 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


Hmm...that Battleworld map is beginning to remind me of something.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:03 PM on January 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


i will be ok with this as long as they include one single panel showing a pissed-off Uatu the Watcher throwing up his hands in frustration and walking away into a swirling vortex of Kirby dots.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 1:05 PM on January 21, 2015 [20 favorites]


What would really keep things from being "unwieldy" (i.e. vulnerable to pedantic complaints about inconsistency?) would be the simple recognition that fiction is fiction, which means refusing the demand that the basic continuity of a given story be literalized into the perfect metaphysical self-consistency of an imagined "universe."

I'm missing your complaint. Having alternate universes where, say, Gwen lives but Peter dies seems to be exactly what you're looking for, but you don't like the multiverse?

And that's not even getting into the sliding timeline of the 616.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 1:06 PM on January 21, 2015


Hmm...that Battleworld map is beginning to remind me of something.

Metafilter: MAD-HOLE, Country of the Screamers.
posted by maryr at 1:07 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


Screw that- I'm joining the Kanga Rat Murder Society.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:08 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Why doesn't "All My Children" ever have these problems?

clearly you're forgetting the time we found out that aliens kidnapped Erica Kane right before she died to stop the legacy virus
posted by kagredon at 1:09 PM on January 21, 2015 [7 favorites]


I live in the Expanding Tiger Empire and I am OK with that.
posted by maryr at 1:11 PM on January 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


...I am also fine with sending Sarah Palin to the Strange Fire Area.
posted by maryr at 1:12 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Luca Saitta makes a strong argument about why Ms. Marvel is thematically the new Spider-Man, although I disagree that Kamala should appear in Captain America 3 unless Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers) does also. Ms. Marvel as the new Spidey is big, but she's emphatically a Carol fan and a legacy character for a female hero/role, and that's big too.
posted by nicebookrack at 1:14 PM on January 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


At first I was concerned about the lack of Latveria on that map, but then I realized that obviously this means all of these lands belong to Doom.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:14 PM on January 21, 2015 [11 favorites]


Oh god, I love this map.
posted by maryr at 1:15 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


...actually, having Doom in charge really would make the name "Battleworld" more palatable. CITIZENS OF DOOM'S BATTLEWORLD, HEED YOUR SOVEREIGN'S WORDS.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:15 PM on January 21, 2015 [6 favorites]


Brian Michael Bendis was on Late Night last night and briefly talked about Secret Wars

and then he thanked Glenn Beck for boosting Ultimate Spider-Man sales
posted by djeo at 1:17 PM on January 21, 2015


Brian Michael Bendis was on Late Night? Is this the sort of thing that happens often? That seems super weird.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 1:19 PM on January 21, 2015


It's lunchtime so now I can look at the Battleworld map. Takeaways

--the Eye of Agamotto is apparently a place now, and who are we kidding I'm going to pony up for an issue to find out why/how
--I really hope that Greenland turns out to actually just be the real Greenland transported to Battleworld and we get a six-issue comic where Alpha Flight takes a lovely trip to see the fjords where the most exciting/complicated thing that happens is that Northstar discovers a talent for ice fishing
--does "King James's England" mean we're getting 1602 involved?
posted by kagredon at 1:20 PM on January 21, 2015 [7 favorites]


Brian Michael Bendis was on Late Night?

He was promoting his new "Powers" TV show...
posted by djeo at 1:21 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Turns out the whole multiversal apocalypse and Battleworld stuff was nothing but smokescreens, illusions and trickery cooked up by a tag team of Mysterio and Arcade in the single greatest act of villainous showmanship to have ever taken place.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:24 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


...which filmed in Atlanta, starring Sharlto Copley!

I am in favor of filming all the comic shows in ATL, so we can have a giant Walking Dead / Powers / Constantine crossover mashup.
posted by nicebookrack at 1:24 PM on January 21, 2015


I don't know why comic book companies don't just periodically reset continuity instead of going back to this multiverse bullshit whenever it gets unwieldy. The nerdy need for a unified canon just makes sensible storytelling harder to accomplish.
empath

Well, on one level I think there's something beautiful and valuable about comics continuity. This is a human creation that's been built up over decades that thousands of people have contributed to professionally, and countless more as fans. The amount of material that makes up Marvel or DC is truly staggering. There's really nothing like these universes anywhere else, and it would be a great loss to erase them.

On another level, I remember reading a piece (and it may have been linked from MeFi) by a musician/comic fan comparing comics to jazz. Just as jazz has a set of conventions and standard songs but the same song done by Louis Armstrong is going to be very different when done by Miles Davis, so too can continuity-based comics be daring and original while still maintaining a legacy. Of course there's going to be a lot of dreck; anything this vast involving this many people is victim to Sturgeon's Law. But even the dreck can be fun, and talented writers like Morrison can come along, look at what's come before, and write stories that blow your mind.

I think people who complain about continuity just have limited imaginations. They look at continuity and see a prison; someone with talent creativity sees building blocks for something great and new.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:25 PM on January 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


I really don't get the conspiracy theories about Marvel/Disney tanking the X-Men for the sake of the films.

There are many, many more people who watch comic book movies than read the comic books. Guardians of the Galaxy grossed $772 million at the box office (as per Wikipedia). At $20/person that comes out to 38 million people who have seen the movie. Then to cover all the fanboys/girls who have seen it multiple times lets say an even 20 million people watched this movie in the theatres.

How about comic sales? A pretty consistent 60,000 per month. Even if every one of those purchases is a unique buyer that is somewhere around 1,500,000 for the year (Rocket Racoon #1 apparently sold 300,000 copies so I'll add that to the total along with some padding). It's still less than a tenth of the people who watched the movie. What's kind of amazing is that Marvel/Disney bet $170 million on a movie based on a comic that averages 60,000 in sales and won.

You may note that if just 1% of those 20 million filmgoers bought the comic and stuck with it, that would be an additional 200,000 sales per month. The lack of comic readership in the face of these huge movies and TV shows has got to be worrying for the industry.

So if Marvel cancelled all the X-titles tomorrow, would it really have an effect on the movies? People would go "oh, X-Men. I remember them, Wolverine is cool" and see the film. I'd say at this point the X-Men movies are a franchise like James Bond. It can exist on its own, independent of any comic or book. Besides, Fox has 50 years of comics to work with to mine for stories and there is nothing stopping them from making original stories for the movies either.

Plus, for all the noise about Inhumans taking the place of mutants, Marvel reversed "No more mutants" in AvX and that was after the film franchise was shown to be a gold mine. They could have easily kept the status quo, but decided not to and as a result there are new mutant characters out there (like goldenballs or the girl who could stop time).
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 1:26 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


I really don't get the conspiracy theories about Marvel/Disney tanking the X-Men for the sake of the films.

It's almost certainly the other way around, editors wanting to re-work the comic books to make them more like the movies, hoping to rope in a few moviegoers. That would be a more believable motive for wanting to move the X-Men and FF off into a different corner away from the Avengers.
posted by straight at 1:35 PM on January 21, 2015


The idea of a "multiverse" or a "canon" in this maximalist sense is really just a consequence of a perversely absolute literalism.

You can't keep people from reading the old stories and wondering how they relate to the new ones. And you can't prevent writers from dipping into them to find hooks for new stories. Even attempting to deliberately avoid referencing the canon is just another way of being influenced by the canon. Any attempt to write off some of the past, to make a list of what is and isn't relevant to current stories, just becomes another part of the canon.
posted by straight at 1:40 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


--the Eye of Agamotto is apparently a place now, and who are we kidding I'm going to pony up for an issue to find out why/how

Maybe it's like Gilbert / Fiddler's Green? Oh damn, now I'm going to have to read it too.
posted by Foosnark at 1:41 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


The creative teams at Marvel really fucked up the Ultimate Universe and blew what they set out to do. They should have just given the whole damn thing to Bendis.

When I read this: "The Ultimate Universe, the Marvel Universe, they're going to slap together," Alonso [Marvel's Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso] said. "Imagine two pizzas: They're going to combine toppings, some toppings are going to drop off. And that is the Marvel Universe moving forward. It's more than the Marvel Universe and the Ultimate Universe, it's all the universes you can imagine. That is the Marvel Universe going forward."

... I thought: When they slap those two pizza pies together, I hope Jeph Loeb is standing there, right in the middle.
posted by Auden at 1:42 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


It's almost certainly the other way around, editors wanting to re-work the comic books to make them more like the movies, hoping to rope in a few moviegoers.

I can kind of see that, but even that has difficulties. Marvel put out a Shield comic book last week that featured Coulson, Fitz and Simmons from the TV show. It looks like it is set in 616. But Fitz doesn't seem to have any brain damage so it still doesn't match the TV show. So if a fan of the show were to get the comic it would confuse them just as much as a comic where Nick Fury was an old white guy.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 1:44 PM on January 21, 2015


If they did peg the FF and X-Men to the original 1960s timeline, I really hope they would also set at least the broad strokes of the X-Men stories up through the mid-90s as having taken place at roughly the time of publication, because all of that Claremont stuff and the titles up through a few years after his departure were just such a product of their time and fit so well there.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:47 PM on January 21, 2015


Without continuity in comics we wouldn't get delights like (from the Distinguished Competition) acknowledged masterpiece series The Sandman, which is a careful crazy quilt story that Neil Gaiman shaped out of old DC series / horror comics / pulp stories / Swamp Thing / Shakespeare / whatever story bits were floating around the office that day. You could (I have, sugar-crazed and at length) make the argument that The Sandman is meta-commentary on comics continuity as a whole; The Sandman = Dream = the same character, but not always the same person (Morpheus). [/derail]
posted by nicebookrack at 1:47 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


So many questions for something that i think is a bad idea and disapprove of!

If Battleworld takes place on Earth-616, does that mean we've got a bunch of double and triple and dodecatupple civilians running around confused? Is there a Florida in Battleworld?

What about all the heroes and villains and celestial and normos that aren't on Earth? Do the Kree and Micronauts and Starjammers and Mojoworld denizens and the Silver Surfer and Uatu the Watcher have to deal with their own infinite crises? And does this mean everyone has to fight off Marvel Zombies?
posted by elr at 1:54 PM on January 21, 2015


Well, you don't have to worry about Uatu...
posted by djeo at 1:59 PM on January 21, 2015


The bits of Sandman that involved DC continuity were by far the worst parts of the series.
posted by empath at 1:59 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


Well, you don't have to worry about Uatu...

Too soon.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 2:06 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm missing your complaint. Having alternate universes where, say, Gwen lives but Peter dies seems to be exactly what you're looking for, but you don't like the multiverse?

Why literalize alternate stories as alternate "universes"? No one imposes this as a metaphysical demand on other kinds of fiction; not even the most parodic message-board rules lawyer would insist on knowing not just who would win in a fight, Emma Bovary or Anna Karenina, but why. Even in the closest parallel I can think of in the rest of fiction, Don Quixote's disavowal of Avellaneda's false sequel, no one tries to make out like there's a rule (beyond authorial one-upsmanship) governing the outcome of the Crisis on Infinite Quixotes.

You can't keep people from reading the old stories and wondering how they relate to the new ones.

Of course; so why the insistence on translating all that potential intertextuality into a set of literal rules within the fictional world? It's a weird and interesting feature of comics specifically as an industry, and really more worth thinking about on that level than the intrinsic one — this kind of anxious exertion of universe-control is an in-world consequence of the way that "franchises" (branded story-worlds) have become the most valuable intellectual property, rather than just the characters and the stories within them.
posted by RogerB at 2:13 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


More Secret Wars? Yay! I wonder what the action figure line will be like!
posted by Spatch at 2:19 PM on January 21, 2015


The bits of Sandman that involved DC continuity were by far the worst parts of the series.

It was also basically abandoned within like three issues, essentially never to be touched on again until the very last arc, and with a definite air of Gaiman fixing the mistake of ever bringing that up again. The extended Sandman universe/continuity itself certainly seems much better for basically treating everything as totally distinct from the normal DC universe.

Screw the endless reboot-reconcile cycle, I want Marvel and DC to actually create Central Planning Committees made up of Good Writers who are Good and Cool and not Bad and Dumb, and give the committees creative oversight and a say in hiring. There was a time when giant crossover events were actually awesome and cool and not a tedious and annoying cashgrab I want to go back to that.
posted by The Master and Margarita Mix at 2:25 PM on January 21, 2015


There was a time when giant crossover events were actually awesome and cool and not a tedious and annoying cashgrab I want to go back to that.

Anything can happen in comics but that's stretching it a bit.
posted by The Hamms Bear at 2:36 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


I'm missing your complaint. Having alternate universes where, say, Gwen lives but Peter dies seems to be exactly what you're looking for, but you don't like the multiverse?

The idea of a multiverse depends on the idea that different fictional creations are some how related to and connected to each other. That simply doesn't need to be the case, and almost by necessity limits the scope of stories that you can tell, most importantly that they can never end.
posted by empath at 2:40 PM on January 21, 2015


There are more references than you might realize: Neil Gaiman's Sandman: Superhero Annotations
posted by hilker at 2:58 PM on January 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


The bits of Sandman that involved DC continuity were by far the worst parts of the series.

The stuff with the Halls got old pretty fast, but there were lots of smaller/one-off references that worked (the issue with Element Girl is one of my favorites)

(on preview, what hilker said.)
posted by kagredon at 3:00 PM on January 21, 2015


Why literalize alternate stories as alternate "universes"?

Why not? They don't take place in the same universe by definition.

The idea of a multiverse depends on the idea that different fictional creations are some how related to and connected to each other.

Surely they are. The neat (and occasionally annoying) thing about a multiverse is that they could conceivably meet each other. Or not.

Maybe I've been overexposed to the concept, but I can't see it being in any way limiting. (Apparently I should talk to the editors at Marvel.)
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 3:05 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


selfnoise: Is the Beyonder back btw?

I think there was an issue of Fantastic Four called "Secret Wars III," in which Beyonder merged with Molecule Man to form a Cosmic Cube. I also remember the Beyonder popping up in some Bendis comic, in what looked like a deliberately undated flashback.

I checked Wikipedia, and, instead of a Cosmic Cube, he apparently became Kosmos, and that flashback may have been in Illuminati #3, but yeah, deliberately undated. (This flashback *might* be really relevant.) There are more details there that I don't really follow.
posted by Pronoiac at 3:13 PM on January 21, 2015


The idea of a multiverse depends on the idea that different fictional creations are some how related to and connected to each other. That simply doesn't need to be the case, and almost by necessity limits the scope of stories that you can tell, most importantly that they can never end.

On the other hand, take a throwaway villain from a 1960 Marvel book, the hero of an obscure 1976 space opera, two supporting cast members from Starlin's Thanos saga in the 1970s (each of whom were dormant for a decade or so, one of whom came back from the dead at least three times and ended up in a completely different physical form), and an oddity who'd appeared ten times in thirty years. Toss them together, mix well, give them the name of a C-list space super-team from the 1960s, add a mix tape and whammo! A movie that made a gazillion dollars this summer.

As far as "limits" go, Reed Richards alone has had a time machine in his house, plus a dimensional portal (that USUALLY remains locked) to the Negative Zone, plus a rocket ship and other vehicles capable of interstellar travel, plus a powerful witch as his son's nanny capable of tapping into extradimensional energies, and if that isn't enough he can make a phone call and have a Norse deity, Earth's Sorcerer Supreme and the inventor of shrinking particles capable of accessing microverses drop by. Plus his son, unchecked, has enough power to create universes all on his own. Now, where or when is it that writers are incapable of putting him and his family due to continuity?
posted by delfin at 3:21 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Huh, Uatu was killed? And it was written by Jason Aaron, who I usually like.

Though it appears to involve "The Orb" who doesn't have a giant eyeball for a head.
posted by Pronoiac at 3:33 PM on January 21, 2015


Y'all, I know what's really going to happen! Thanks to Ales Kot's subconscious leaking Borges references into Secret Avengers, Marvel 616 will become Tlön!
posted by nicebookrack at 4:04 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Man, I step away from tights books for (cough) couple years, and all of the sudden everyone hates Jeph Loeb. All I really remember him from is Long Halloween and Hush, which were both decent. I know he worked on the Age of Apocalypse (speaking of bullshit crossovers in the x-pouch era)…

(I just realized that I don't think I've read anything mainstream Marvel since Civil War, which was about a decade ago. I liked a lot of the Ultimate stuff, but I petered out on that too. It's weird to think that I've mostly been DC — my younger self wouldn't have believed the upset in quality between the two.)
posted by klangklangston at 4:29 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Man, I step away from tights books for (cough) couple years, and all of the sudden everyone hates Jeph Loeb. All I really remember him from is Long Halloween and Hush, which were both decent. I know he worked on the Age of Apocalypse (speaking of bullshit crossovers in the x-pouch era)…

What it looks like from the outside is that Loeb had a precipitous drop in quality around the time his son died, which is super sad and I can't really begrudge him changing his writing style if the grief from that is actually what prompted it for whatever reason, but yeah Loeb has written some awful stuff for a while now.
posted by jason_steakums at 4:38 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Huh, Uatu was killed?

Yeah, and now Nick Fury is the new Watcher. Which leaves the Samuel L. Jackson-looking Nick Fury running SHIELD.

I thought a Noir cosmic murder mystery event over "Who Killed the Watcher?" sounded cool, and I thought it did some clever things, but it was a bust.

It's weird to think that I've mostly been DC — my younger self wouldn't have believed the upset in quality between the two.

Whoa, really? Except for the current run of Batgirl (which is only three issues in), I think DC is mostly trash. Marvel has Daredevil, Hawkeye, Ms. Marvel, Silver Surfer, Squirrel Girl, and whole bunch of other pretty good books. What DC books are you reading that you like?
posted by painquale at 4:39 PM on January 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


Of course; so why the insistence on translating all that potential intertextuality into a set of literal rules within the fictional world?

If I'm reading a story about Hank Pym, it makes a whole lot of difference to the story whether or not he hit his wife a few years ago.

Say I have a great idea for a story about Reed Richards being put on trial by aliens for saving the life of the menace Galactus. Did he do that? Can I reference that old story, or do I have to tell a new story of him saving Galactus to set up the one about the trial?

It matters to the story what has happened in the past of the characters in a story.
posted by straight at 4:41 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Man, I step away from tights books for (cough) couple years, and all of the sudden everyone hates Jeph Loeb.

I hate Mark Millar too much to have time to hate Jeph Loeb.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:47 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


Age of Apocalypse ruled. So crossovers can't be all bad.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 4:57 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Elf with a gun???
I haven't thought about those Defenders issues in decades.
Thanks for the smile.
posted by wester at 5:17 PM on January 21, 2015


I hate Mark Millar too much to have time to hate Jeph Loeb.

yeah, Loeb at least has mostly Peter-principled his way into editorial work, Mark "2edgy4u" Millar's is still distressingly prolific
posted by kagredon at 5:26 PM on January 21, 2015


" What DC books are you reading that you like?"

The last couple that I enjoyed were the new Animal Man and Swamp Thing runs, and I've heard really good stuff about the current Wonder Woman run.
posted by klangklangston at 5:53 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I wonder what its universe number will be. Since its goal is to be even more quintessentially Marvelly than Earth-616 (classic) or Earth-1610 (Ultimate), it should be something like Earth-61600 or Earth-16.
posted by BiggerJ at 6:11 PM on January 21, 2015


... Uatu.. dead?

NOOOOOOOOOOOO

*shakes fist at an uncaring universe*

And NICK FURY is The Watcher now?

Damn. I turn my back on comics for like six seconds and THIS happens.

I swear if they retcon the retcon of The Sentry back into existence, I will not be held responsible for my actions.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 6:13 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


Wait a minute, one of the new lands in Battleworld is called Bar Sinister.

THERE'S NO NEED TO FEAR!
posted by BiggerJ at 6:17 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


i hope one of the classified areas is called "sniktbub island" and it turns out that the reason why wolverine can be in every other issue that comes out is that there's been like about a million of him in a pocket universe

then all of the wandas maximoff join hands and intone "no more wolverines" and we enter a truly new era
posted by kagredon at 6:35 PM on January 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


i hope one of the classified areas is called "sniktbub island" and it turns out that the reason why wolverine can be in every other issue that comes out is that there's been like about a million of him in a pocket universe

Now you're making me miss the Exiles :(
posted by jason_steakums at 6:45 PM on January 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


I wasn't going to comment but then I saw that someone had posted that Kirby Kamandi map, whic his one of my favorite things ever (and was my Facebook cover photo for many years). A few thoughts:

Marvel has gotten way better the last few years, both in terms quality (a lot of the books feel like indie films or prog rock space opera) as well as in terms of diversity. Spiderman, Captain America, and Nick Fury are all black now, as are the Might Avengers. Thor is a woman, as are the two most popular characters now, Ms Marvel and Kamala Khan.

Marvel's also gotten a lot weirder. I feel like one side of the debate here about continuity is saying continuity is bad because it presumes a literal-minded policing of something that's obviously artificial: fiction. I used to have this pov myself, but I think that comics continuity now is a little bit different. Influenced by Grant Morrison's polyvocal, Silver Age continuity playfulness and a generation of writers who have an intertextual relationship with '90s comics, continuity now is more like Doctor Who continuity: there's a ton of continuity, all of which is consequential for dramatic purposes, but the alternative, idiosyncratic, meaningless nature of the continuity is foregrounded. A lot of the big recent crossovers have been dedicated not to stupid big fight scenes (a la the Skrull Invasion, Civil War, and AVX), but with playing around in alternate universes to reveal the vibrant weird multitudinous underbelly of the Marvel universe: the current Spiderman crossover (which features every Spiderman, including Power Rangers spiderman, Gwen Stacy as Spiderman, steampunk spiderman, Peter Porker the spectacular spiderham, and the Spidermen from the cartoon, comic strip, and Hostess cupcakes ads), as well as the Age of Ultron (all about time travel--almost more like an elseworlds comic), Marvel Zombies, that Greg Pak X-series that revived Age of Apocalypse, a lot of Deadpool issues in which he timetravels into Kirby or Rob Liefeld comics, and the recent Original Sins crossover, which brought a crazy exploitation flick energy to Marvel space opera.

The lead-in to Secret Wars this time around is Hickman's Avenger run, part of which involves the characters fighting alternate universe versions of themselves. One of the better storylines involved the Marvel heroes essentially fighting the Justice League; they almost get beaten by their version of Superman until Doctor Strange, who has sold his soul to the devil, summons up a Marvel version of Cthulhu and eats all the DC archetypes. So, continuity becomes less restrictive, more provisional and iterative--a way to both mark, honor and deform something. This Secret Wars crossover seems like it will have the same sensibility--a way of playing with all of your toys in the most thrillpowered and nonsensical way possible (e.g., will there be a fight scene between '90s Jim Lee X-Men and 1602 Neil Gaiman X-Men?).
posted by johnasdf at 7:10 PM on January 21, 2015 [6 favorites]


Ms Marvel and Kamala Khan.

Same person. Carol is Captain Marvel now.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 7:44 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Fuck yeah she is.
posted by maryr at 10:15 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Anyway, if this does end up all going bad, I may just switch to reading Archie full time. It's gotten crazygood the last few years.
posted by radwolf76 at 11:18 PM on January 21, 2015


Yeah, Archie has got it going on.
posted by painquale at 11:34 PM on January 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I always kind of thought the X-men should be in their own universe. They make much more sense when they are the only super powered being around, particularly their self obsession. In the full Marvel universe it just makes them look quite dickish that the only thing they care about is what other mutants are getting up to, and the dystopian futures they are heading to always seem to ignore Thor just deciding to smash up all the sentinels.

I love the original Secret Wars. Doom is great in it, it has Spiderman beating up the X men while Nightcrawler marvels about how great he is. Captain America defeating a being of godlike power by running at it with his shield, Molecule Man tossing mountains about, Hulk holding up an entire mountain by himself (he has leverage, apparently), Klaw and the Lizard playing patticake with Hawkeye. What's not to like?
posted by Cannon Fodder at 12:20 AM on January 22, 2015 [4 favorites]


Secret Wars is derided for being a transparent attempt to sell a line of toys, but it's really fun. It and The Infinity Gauntlet are the only two MU-wide events that I have a real fondness for.
posted by painquale at 3:34 AM on January 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


johnasdf: Marvel ... continuity now is more like Doctor Who

That is a great way to look at it. I wish I had thought of it.
posted by djeo at 6:14 AM on January 22, 2015


... Uatu.. dead?

NOOOOOOOOOOOO

*shakes fist at an uncaring universe*

And NICK FURY is The Watcher now?


Nah, it gets better. Bucky Barnes is currently the Watcher (in Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier). He's got a space-aardvark that he stole in the first issue and spent another issue more or less entirely tripping balls so he could confront Old Loki. It is the best. (And reminds me that I should just track down everything Ales Kot ever wrote.)
posted by kalimac at 6:36 AM on January 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


Anyway, if this does end up all going bad, I may just switch to reading Archie full time. It's gotten crazygood the last few years.

I haven't read comics in decades (though I like reading about them here), so this is like the strangest thing to me. Like talking about a Little Dot reboot.

Although holy crap there's going to be a Hot Stuff movie.
posted by malocchio at 8:04 AM on January 22, 2015


I always kind of thought the X-men should be in their own universe. They make much more sense when they are the only super powered being around, particularly their self obsession. In the full Marvel universe it just makes them look quite dickish that the only thing they care about is what other mutants are getting up to

I always felt the same way about the mutant-as-metaphor-for-race/sexuality thing, too; it's hard to portray a joined universe in which mutants are HATED AND FEARED yet people are down with dudes like Mister Fantastic and Captain America. Like, THOSE guys with godlike powers are pretty cool, but WHOA my daughter can walk through walls, that's FUCKED UP
posted by Greg Nog at 8:41 AM on January 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


You say that like racism makes any sense.

I think the inconsistency makes the metaphor that much better. If we really had people with super powers, people would for sure be drawing arbitrary and stupid lines to divide Us from Them.
posted by straight at 9:13 AM on January 22, 2015


"That Captain America, he's one of the good ones. He's not a mutie."

"What? They call themselves muties all the time. Why can't I use that word?"
posted by straight at 9:14 AM on January 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


Bucky Barnes isn't the Watcher, he's the Man on the Wall, which was apparently Nick Fury's side job all these years.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 10:09 AM on January 22, 2015


whups, sorry, any portmanteau is right.
posted by kalimac at 10:22 AM on January 22, 2015


Guys! I just realized: Having worlds collide and interdimensional weirdness is a great reason to feature America Chavez punching everything!

Okay, I'm tentatively for this now. Even if I have to write my own America-centric version of events, it's going to happen.
posted by dinty_moore at 10:56 AM on January 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


"Can a mutant also be affected by terrigen mists?" is my new favorite version of "what happens when a vampire turns a werewolf?"
posted by elr at 1:33 PM on January 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


"I always felt the same way about the mutant-as-metaphor-for-race/sexuality thing, too; it's hard to portray a joined universe in which mutants are HATED AND FEARED yet people are down with dudes like Mister Fantastic and Captain America. Like, THOSE guys with godlike powers are pretty cool, but WHOA my daughter can walk through walls, that's FUCKED UP"

You never met a racist sports fan? Plenty of people idolize Michael Jordan and hate stereotypical black people.
posted by klangklangston at 2:40 PM on January 22, 2015


"Daredevil isn't like those mutants, he WORKED for his powers."
"His origin story is 'hit by a truck'."
"But after that he trained. He wasn't born into it."
"The xmen live in a school and do combat training for hours a day every day for years."
"fuckin' muties."


I also love that comics are at the point where you can bring up a ridiculous idea, any ridiculous idea at all, and someone will post a link to the most recent time it happened.
posted by sandswipe at 3:52 PM on January 22, 2015 [3 favorites]


I see your Sniktbub Island and raise you Wolverine chimps
posted by nicebookrack at 4:34 PM on January 22, 2015 [3 favorites]


Hee, nicebookrack, Nextwave could become canon!
posted by Pronoiac at 7:45 PM on January 22, 2015


Any comic book that contradicts Nextwave is not-canon.
posted by straight at 8:08 PM on January 22, 2015 [5 favorites]


I also love that comics are at the point where you can bring up a ridiculous idea, any ridiculous idea at all, and someone will post a link to the most recent time it happened.

Ha, so a few years back I was on a forum reading through a thread about which comic heroes could deal with which, and someone was insisting that the Punisher could take all of them. It went on like this for several pages. I decided to butt in and declare "look, this is all completely speculative and really based on who looks which character the most. I mean, it's hardly like there's a comic in which the Punisher beats every Marvel character, is there?" The next comment was a link to this comic.
posted by Cannon Fodder at 12:02 AM on January 23, 2015


SPEAKING OF RETCONS

tl;dr- Apparently symbiotes (venom and carnage of spiderman fame) have just been retconned into a super altruistic race of space cops called Klyntar- except they go utterly bonkers if they ever touch someone who's not perfect, and they basically brush off the fact that most of them are on psychotic rampages at any one time as a PR problem. Move over, Hank Pym- the Klyntar are the most incompetent super beings yet. I love it.

This also opens the door to symbiote captain america (since steve rodgers is always perfect), which would be a neat way to re-de-age steve rodgers.



PS if those count then as of two years ago deadpool can take the punisher, the living tribunal, and everyone up to the artist employed by real world marvel to draw deadpool killing punisher. He then runs out of real and marvel people to kill and kills moby dick, tom sawyer, the cast of little women, at least two disney princesses, himself, his dog self, and himself as galactus among literally infinite others.
posted by sandswipe at 1:42 AM on January 23, 2015 [2 favorites]


I see your Sniktbub Island and raise you Wolverine chimps

You can't imagine so many Logans in the weekly mail
All of them coming as crossover to help the series' sales
I never thought I'd see those sideburns on a chimpanzee
But someone's sending me Marvel comics filled with Wolverines

Some Bubs in spacesuits, some Bubs trying to start a fight,
Some Bubs in chartreuse, some Bubs think they're doing right,
Spidey's a young Bub, a Bub who's actually a fan
A pair of clone Bubs with bones made of ad'mantiam

Another crisis with Wolveriiiiines
And every one is a little meeean.

If I had to guess, I'd say the X-men artists thinks it's great
They're writing more, maybe they're drawing them just to fill their monthly rate
I'm losing sleep - and it's gonna be keeping me up all night
I thought it was funny, but now I've got money on a Squirrel Girl fight.

Some Bubs in hard hats, some Bubs who're looking kinda sick
Some Bubs who love cats, Bubs about to get themselves snkit'd
A doomsday-wishing Bub, a Bub in black like a Dream
A goin' crazy Bub, a Deadpool Bub makes me scream.

Another crisis with Wolveriiiiines
And every one loves a little Jeeeeean.

Another crisis with Wolveriiiiines
And every one is a damn monkeeeeeey

Every one, every one, every one is a chimpanzee
Every one, every one, every one is a chimpanzee
posted by maryr at 3:49 PM on January 23, 2015 [2 favorites]


...Ladies.
posted by maryr at 3:58 PM on January 23, 2015 [1 favorite]


Can we have a Symbiote Steve / Agent Venom (Flash Thompson) team-up book? Because they've fought and teamed up in Spider-Island, and it was super-cute. In a manly military kinda way.

Also, poor Flash, maybe he's not perfect, but he's still 98% less evil or crazy than Eddie Brock was on his best days. The symbiote-cops should be nicer to Flash.

So if a symbiote touches the manly perfection of Steve Rogers and he rejects it, will it go crazy with the jealousy of a spurned lover like the original symbiote did over Peter Parker? Because that was the original origin (heh) for Brock!Venom. (I own the comic in which Spider-Man goes for advice about Venom to a psychologist, who explains about love/hate delusional fixations & codependency, etc. I love Original Venom's creepiness because he's an obsessed stalker who HATES you because you won't LOVE him like he LOVES you and he just wants to BECOME ONE with you by eating your internal organs and wearing your skin like a Snuggie.)

I will enjoy the future retcon regarding how symbiotes are somehow both benevolent space cops AND the inherently-corrupting evil poison that threatened to, like, melt the entire Microverse in Minimum Carnage. Which was kinda "eh" as a cosmic event but worth it for Kaine being terrible at team-ups. Also: teeny-tiny superheroes, so cute and itty-bitty!

Ooh, maybe the symbiote space cops of DEATH are biting social commentary on violent police states. So timely!
posted by nicebookrack at 11:57 AM on January 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


I think I still have most of the first Secret Wars books in a box somewhere...I'm unreasonably excited about this.

Why? They were shit.
posted by Paul Slade at 3:43 PM on January 25, 2015


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