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Topic: Marvel Outdoing Themselves Again (Spoilers) Locked Post Reply | Post New Topic
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John Byrne

Beam Me Up, Scotty!

Joined: 11 May 2005
Posts: 108906
Posted: 03 May 2017 at 6:21pm | IP Logged | 1  

I don't think -- and this is strictly my opinion, mind you -- I don't think anyone at the present incarnation of Marvel understands the concept of saturation, at least not in a sense other than flooding the market.

For several decades they have piled stunt upon stunt, until even the most gullible fans/collectors have reached a point where they respond to an outrageous stunt with "But that doesn't make sense!"

And from that moment, they're out of the web.

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Darin Henry
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Posted: 03 May 2017 at 10:13pm | IP Logged | 2  

I honestly think the direct market has become a game of the big 2 publishers competing to soak up the most retailer capital.  100 monthly titles, 1 in 1000 chase variants and double shipping are all examples of it and the low margin comic book biz means most retailers still fall for it because Marvel and DC are the smartes andthe safest bets.  Of course with all their ordering budgets tied up with two or three publishers, less established publishers have no way of being stocked unless it's pre-ordered by a pull list subscriber, in which case, why even bother getting distributed into comic stores since clearly those customers are already willing to buy the book sight unseen. 

 I found it very telling when Marvel blamed the downturn in their sales on DC's temporary returnability policy for Rebirth. Essentially they were calling out DC for being better at the game than they've been.  And God forbid Marvel ever make any of their books returnable because they may desperately want to tie up retailer capital but they never want to risk having to give any of it back.
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James Woodcock
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Posted: 04 May 2017 at 5:11am | IP Logged | 3  

My current issues with events:
1) Co-ordination seems poor - comics contradict each other, events don't match up, even mini-series launched specific to an event do not match up - anyone remember the Spider-Man mini that went with House of M? Bore no relation to what was in the main comic at all
Editors say it is difficult to keep track of things and things 'slip through' That was not a case of slipping through, it was a major screw up. Hint, if you are making it so big you can't keep track of it, it's too big, and too complicated - scale it back

2) launching new mini-series to compliment the main event
One event comic and all the cross overs are enough. To have an event cross over in to Spider-man and then launch another Spider-man mini attached to the event is just rediculous

3) Multiple events happening at the same time
This is just crazy. There are events happening, events starting to happen and events still picking up the pieces all at the same time. Do comics even get a chance to breath and tell their own story nowadays? Spider-man may well be focused on the clone conspiracy, or whatever his event is at the moment, but that means all the other Spider-man titles are also focused on that

4) Cross-over comics that aren't
Hey kids, buy this comic, it's part of the new mega-event. Yeah, for one panel.
I know I should be pleased with that, as it means the comic can do its own thing, but it pretends it's part of the thing it isn't

5) Shipping times
This just screws up everything. The new launches are out way before the event is actually finished - Civil War II and Secret Wars being prime examples of that. Look, if you can't get it out on time, work through exactly what you are going to do. in fact, the more I think about this, the more I think every event at Marvel since House of M has failed to complete on time. Civil war I was so late, JMS had to tread water on a story for months

Yeah, that ought to about do it
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John Byrne

Beam Me Up, Scotty!

Joined: 11 May 2005
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Posted: 04 May 2017 at 7:45am | IP Logged | 4  

4) Cross-over comics that aren't

••

Ah, yes! Remember DC's "red skies" comics?

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Vinny Valenti
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Posted: 04 May 2017 at 8:53am | IP Logged | 5  

I know now that it wasn't your fault, JB, but I remember 12 year old me being cheesed when I bought FF#282 (on a limited allowance) since it was listed as a Secret Wars II crossover, when it really just had a panel redrawn from a scene that already appeared in the regular series.
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Eric Jansen
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Posted: 06 May 2017 at 5:31am | IP Logged | 6  

It would be one thing if the characters' popularity had been decreasing along with the books' sales, but, unfortunately for whatever rationale the comics honchos have for all their many inexplicable decisions of the last few years, the Marvel heroes are more popular than ever...in the movies.

The Marvel movies have been presenting the heroes as earnest and, well, heroic--and making billions of dollars doing so.  At most, their worst compromises are in the wardrobe department (though I note that the closer Captain America's uniform gets to the comic version, the better it looks on screen!).  The movies are still in the CONSTRUCTION phase of things, and hopefully will be for many years to come.

The comics, on the other hand, are in the DECONSTRUCTION phase, leading to debacles-in-progress like "Cap as Hydra/Nazi."  ("No, really, this is the way he's always been!  Everything you know is a lie!" from the writer and editor--and now, it's "Wait, we didn't mean that!  Wait and see!  Trust us!" from the marketing department.)

In a metaphysical sense, it's like the iconic heroes we've known and loved for decades have outgrown the confines of 22 monthly pages of "just" paper and "graduated" to the big screen or even the small (TV) screen, leaving their "ghosts" or afterimages behind for the printed page.  The best super-heroes are on screen, while the best comics these days are not the Marvel and DC super-heroes.

It's like super-heroes and comics have gone their separate ways--a great love affair where the principals have broken up and started dating others...others who aren't the best match for them.  (I really enjoy the movies, but I would still prefer seeing the main versions of the characters in great, well-done, monthly comics!)  It might be too late for Marvel and DC.  Good, honest and earnest, serious and smart, super-heroes can still come back to the medium best suited for them, but it might take a third, new company to publish them.
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Anthony J Lombardi
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Joined: 12 January 2005
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Posted: 06 May 2017 at 6:24am | IP Logged | 7  

We all know that eventually Captain Nazi is gonna get sorted out. So even though I disagree with the way this story is going. I wasn't overly bothered by it. I would have even been willing to follow it to see what was happening. 

But honestly this thing is getting dragged out far too long. It's going to be years before this all gets resolved. When really this storyline should have been six months tops. 
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Eric Sofer
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Posted: 06 May 2017 at 8:46am | IP Logged | 8  

And Captain Nazi has already been done, and defeated.

By Captain Marvel. The irony is delicious.
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Laren Farmer
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Posted: 06 May 2017 at 9:06am | IP Logged | 9  

I know that since the Cosmic Cube and the like are involved that everything can be 'reset' eventually...but to me this is something that just isn't right because, it's Captain America. 

Demon in a Bottle led to decades of 'Iron Man is a drunk'. 

Likewise, Hank Pym became the poster boy for spousal abuse for just as long. 

So now...Cosmic Reset Button or not...loud sections of fandom AND too many 'civilians' are going to hear the name Captain America and think:  Yeah, he's a Nazi/fascist...that's why he wraps himself in the flag.  Captain Alt-Right. 

That's what we have to look forward to now...for decades.


Edited by Laren Farmer on 07 May 2017 at 4:44pm
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Brian Hunt
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Posted: 06 May 2017 at 8:55pm | IP Logged | 10  

Anthony is right. The length of time that these story
lines drag on is part of the problem.

I just don't have confidence that the status quo will be
established because Marvel hasn't done anything lately
to earn that kind of faith from me. This convoluted
story is set up with a cosmic cube being used to make
him a good guy. His default nature, according to the
current story, is as a Hydra Loyalist. Feh. I have no
interest in this type of "Everything you know is a lie"
story.
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Mike Norris
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Posted: 06 May 2017 at 10:07pm | IP Logged | 11  

They keep digging the whole deeper though. Rick Jones has been executed by a firing squad on Cap's orders
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Joe S. Walker
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Posted: 07 May 2017 at 6:15am | IP Logged | 12  

"Demon in a Bottle led to decades of 'Iron Man is a drunk'."

And indeed, in Secret Empire one of the other characters - one of his fellow heroes, by the way - casually refers to him as "the drunk". 
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John Byrne

Beam Me Up, Scotty!

Joined: 11 May 2005
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Posted: 07 May 2017 at 7:37am | IP Logged | 13  

Demon in a Bottle led to decades of "Iron Man is a drunk."

••

When I was working on the early, early days of what became SUPERMAN III, one of the attached writers told me -- TOLD me, mind you! -- that Superman could not kiss Lois, because when he did she lost her memory.

I tried to impress upon him that he was referencing a very SPECIFIC event in SUPERMAN II, but there was no getting thru to him. The moment had been imprinted on his brain as a Thing Superman Does.

This happens with bad writing, especially in comics. The well is really very shallow, and when people return to it again and again and again, they tend to draw the same water a lot.

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Shane Matlock
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Posted: 07 May 2017 at 12:12pm | IP Logged | 14  

I really hated the way the Superman movies added powers to Superman. As if the comics hadn't added enough already. Throwing his S shield and telekinesis vision? Apparently that mind erasing kiss from Superman II had been used ONCE in the comics in Action Comics #306. But both there and the movie it was never implied that every time he kissed someone it would erase their memories. A silly superpower indeed, but in both cases it was a conscious choice like the fact he can look at people without vaporizing them with his heat vision. The comics have had their fair share of adding goofy powers to Superman over the years too. Super ventriloquism anybody? A huge reason why I loved JB's run (other than the writing and art) on Superman was it took him back to the basics of the powers that mattered.

Edited by Shane Matlock on 07 May 2017 at 12:13pm
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Andrew W. Farago
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Posted: 08 May 2017 at 1:38pm | IP Logged | 15  

I'm taking it as a big "What If?" that's built on the kind of heel turns that floored me when I watched pro wrestling as a kid. We're seeing that despite his lack of superpowers, if Captain America turned against us, he could literally take over the world in a matter of hours.

Marvel's done the alternate reality, cosmic crossover events before--Infinity Gauntlet, Age of Apocalypse, House of M, Age of Ultron, their recent Secret Wars event--and there's a Cosmic Cube involved, so we're building up toward a likely finish of *almost* everything getting set right at the end. It's really unsettling seeing Cap like this, but if they want him to come out of this as a better, more relevant character firmly in the Chris Evans Cap mold, all the pieces are set up for that to happen.
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Brian Rhodes
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Posted: 08 May 2017 at 2:01pm | IP Logged | 16  

A huge reason why I loved JB's run (other than the writing and art) on Superman was it took him back to the basics of the powers that mattered.

Super strength (tempered, but still incredibly strong). Invulnerability.  Heat vison. X-Ray vision. Flight*. Super speed*.

*Still faster "than a speeding bullet"...but not light.

And he still needs to...you know...breathe.

No moving planets...or flying to them. No time-traveling.

I enjoyed this "limited" Superman. This almost...Marvel version of the character (meant in a good way). At least...what Marvel characters used to be.





Edited by Brian Rhodes on 09 May 2017 at 3:33pm
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Charles Valderrama
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Posted: 09 May 2017 at 9:02am | IP Logged | 17  

Skimming thru the internet forums, I found out that in this Secret Empire storyline, Hydra-Cap lifts Thor’s enchanted hammer, Mjolnir. (It isn't a trick.) Apparently, the definition of "worthiness" will be explored in this story as it pertains to evil Cap wielding Thor's legendary weapon.

-C!
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Brian Hunt
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Posted: 09 May 2017 at 4:15pm | IP Logged | 18  

I vaguely remember reading a Walt Simonson interview a
long time ago where he mentioned that to him, a viking's
sensibilities would mean that being worthy to lift
Mjolnir had more to do with being a warrior than it did
character.
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Charles Valderrama
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Posted: 17 May 2017 at 12:00pm | IP Logged | 19  

Things just became more confusing.... Marvel is trying to "right the ship" it seems... under the guise of a "good, clever story".....






..... another (bearded) Steve Rogers has resurfaced in the story..!!

-C!
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Laren Farmer
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Joined: 16 April 2004
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Posted: 17 May 2017 at 12:31pm | IP Logged | 20  

Oh no...it's going to be Cap's version of the clone saga. 

Or maybe it will be like the two Superman in in 'Rebirth' and they'll have to merge together to become the real Captain America. 

Or it's another Skrull. 
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Jason Larouse
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Joined: 10 May 2011
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Posted: 17 May 2017 at 1:28pm | IP Logged | 21  

Or one of them is Ultimate Cap.

Ultimate Reed Richards is running around as a bad guy in the main universe so it's not unprecedented. 
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Jeremy Simington
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Posted: 17 May 2017 at 2:11pm | IP Logged | 22  

"Ultimate Reed Richards is running around as a bad guy in the main universe "

I'm old enough to remember when the bad guy version of Reed Richards was Dr. Doom. Too bad Stan and Jack were so bereft of imagination and talent that they created perhaps the greatest comic book villain of all time when they could have just invented Evil Reed From Another an Alternate Earth.
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Steve De Young
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Posted: 17 May 2017 at 3:07pm | IP Logged | 23  

Ultimate Wolverine, aka Jimmy Hudson, is also running around in the Marvel Universe.
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Jason Larouse
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Posted: 17 May 2017 at 3:45pm | IP Logged | 24  

It's always a good time to mention that about ten years ago Joe Quesada said that if Marvel ever did a crossover between the main universe and the ultimate universe that they would officially be out of ideas. 
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Emery Calame
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Posted: 17 May 2017 at 7:19pm | IP Logged | 25  

" when they could have just invented Evil Reed From Another an Alternate Earth."

They did that back in the early 70s, with "The Brute" of the High Evolutionary's Counter Earth. 
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