We fully underestimated the magnitude of Marvel ushering Secret Wars onto comic stands come May. If you thought that this series was just another narrative excursion convolute with time and space-travel, new players with incredible powers or resurrected characters in new plots, then you couldn’t be wrongerer. Yes, we use as much neologisms here as Marvel does. But if that threw you for a loop, Secret Wars will do much worse to your sense of continuity.
Current series like Avengers and New Avengers (which are also coming to an end) have flaunted themes of multiverse imploding in on themselves, and concepts of space and time becoming like putty in the hands of mutants, time travellers, cosmonaut warriors and everything in-between. And with this being the status quo over Marvel teams like the X-Men and The Avengers, all the decades of abuse of the space-time continuum is going to have huge, metaphysical repercussions for the entire Marvel Universe.
Marvel’s Executive Editor Tom Brevoort, Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso and Junior Sales & Communications Administrator Chris D’Lando revealed that in Secret Wars (following on from New Avengers + Avengers) will see the Marvel Universe undergo radical reconstruction. Two worlds will collide: Marvel Universe and The Ultimate Universe where the heroes populating both hemispheres will have to wipe each other out to ensure their survival.
Brevoort tells fans that Secret Wars is not merely “Stan Lee-hyperbole”, but such an event horizon will have a resounding effect on Marvel’s direction after the Secret Wars series is spent. The main collision of Marvel Universe and Ultimate Universe is only the tip of the iceberg; Marvel Zombies, The Age Of Ultron, The Age Of Apocalypse and that series where the Hulk gets his “Hugh Hefner” on and takes over the playboy mansion (yeah, this happened in Old Boy Logan)… all these separate pocket realities converge in Marvel’s Secret Wars.
As such, Secret Wars is a mosh pit of decades of Marvel alternate and serialised events and which heroes will float to the top will surely have Charles Darwin (or Xavier) to thank. Marvel is at defcon one, and her finger is hovering over the detonator button. And Alex Ross is rendering the cover art for the series. You only break out Alex Ross when your plan to channel the energy of world-ending apocalyptic narratives.
But why such a drastic move? One could consider this Secret Wars as a giant reset button, a move to streamline future Marvel Studios and Marvel Comic endeavours. And we see this at work already, Marvel’s need for IP control, lining up their ducks neatly to work in tandem. Such a move would ensure less retrofitting narratives in the future, like the whole Magneto / Scarlet Witch I-am-actually-not-your-daughter-now debacle. And such flexibility in the Marvel Comic / Studio universe potential will give them more IP control over future projects, having sold the film rights of their biggest titles X-Men and Fantastic Four (to Fox) and Spider-Man (to Sony). Hence, when you think about it, the introduction of Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver in the coming film Avengers: Age Of Ultron makes more sense. Age of Ultron will present both Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver as non-Mutants. This concept was essentially first propelled by the declaration of Scarlet and Quicksilver not being related to X-Men‘s Magneto in Uncanny Avengers, effectively separating the two from the X-Men / mutant theme, circumventing Fox film rights to use them in Avengers: Age Of Ultron.
Things are going to be shaken. Forget about Xorn being Magneto. Then not being Magneto but an impersonation of him. Forget Bishop time-hopping like a time-hopping… chess piece? Secret Wars wishes to turn the very universe on its head and keep shaking it to see what falls out. Our guess is the Hulk will rebuild (very poorly) our universe and govern near-empty space as an angry green god.
See the Secret Wars Live Kickoff in the player below:
Secret Wars #0 and Marvel’s end will be on comic shelves as part of the Free Comic Book Day on May 3rd 2015