While nobody does cosmic like Marvel does cosmic, I've got to warn you that the way we're doing cosmic this month is not like we've done it in the past. We've got two series, one limited and the other ongoing, featuring characters which are a tad different than Marvel's cosmic cohorts of the past. Previous Marvel cosmic characters have tended to be noble and aloof-- Silver Surfer types. Well, Captain Marvel and Lunatik are anything but. They're both cosmic dudes with attitudes, if I may generalize.
Captain Marvel a.k.a. Legacy, son of the original Mar-Vell, is a brash, wild, somewhat hedonistic young adult, who's getting pretty fed up with always being compared to his late father, the space hero. As written by Fabian Nicieza of X-MEN and NEW WARRIORS fame, you know this book will be so cutting edge you'll need a box of bandages to read it. And the art by Ed Benes and Mike Sellers has to be gawked at to be believed.
Then there's Lunatik (no relation to anyone with a real mental disorder), a crude, ill-mannered, brawny bounty hunter who travels the universe getting into trouble, riding a rocket-sleigh pulled by creatures too gross to be described, and accompanied by an alien pixie in hot pants. As co-created by Keith Giffen and Lovern Kindierski and written by Lovern, Lunatik is the most obnoxious, disgusting, and hilarious anti-hero this company has ever published. The artwork by Duncan Rouleau and Jim Royal will also jolt your eyes into orbit. If you miss this book, you're missing out on what I think will be the sleeper hit of the year.
Till next week!
-- Mark Gruenwald
So are we all in the Halloween spirit yet? We've got a lot of treats coming your way this month, but no tricks!
First off, the return of Reed Richards! We never said he was dead, we never said he wasn't coming back, we never said where the heck he's been. But hooie, it's been a while since we saw the FF's founding father! And for those of you who say the FF's not the FF without him-- the real Reed returns, courtesy of our usual gang of effervescent FF-igees Tom DeFalco, Paul Ryan, and Danny Bulanadi!
Next we've got peerless George Perez signing on as scripter of the SILVER SURFER, joining our incomparable art team, Tom Grindberg and Bill Anderson. George promises to take Norrin Radd where he's never flown before and to put him in situations unlike any he's ever experienced. It all starts this month in issue one-one-one (#111)!
And if you're one of the many who can't get enough Silver Surfer in only 22 pages a month, we're also treating you with Surfer's first team book, STAR MASTERS. With the skyrider teamed up with a couple other cosmic heroes, you just know that the villainy they're up against is going to be galactic class. The scintillating artwork is by Scot Eaton and Bob Almond and the story is by that guy who used to write CAP and QUASAR.
In the Avengers corner of the universe, the events chronicled in AVENGERS, IRON MAN, FORCE WORKS, and WAR MACHINE continue to draw the Avengers together in an ever-tightening noose. I promise you when this saga's over, the Avengers will have been transformed for all time. Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, you'll have to decide for yourself.
Finally we've got the new CAPTAIN MARVEL and LUNATIK titles that I waxed ecstatic about in last week's column. Go back and reread it. Or better still, seek out these two titles at all costs. No clones allowed.
-- Mark Gruenwald
October 13 was the first anniversary of Marvelution, which in essence subdivided the Marvel line into five family groups with five editors in chief and separate cover corner symbols and separate bullpen bulletins pages. In the past year we've seen big things come out of this family group focus -- relaunch of core titles like the "Age of Apocalypse" in the X-MEN titles, the "Double Edge" sequence in the "Edge" line, the SCARLET SPIDER books out this month, and of course our revitalization of the AVENGERS family of titles that began with THE CROSSING.
My question to you, gentle readers, is this: Is it working? Do you like this substratification and the emphasis it's brought or do you long for the days when there was a greater sense of Marvel line unity, one cover corner symbol, one bullpen bulletin page, one editor in chief? Please let us know. We don't intend to stop Marveluting till we get it right!
-- Mark Gruenwald