Forget 2012 Marvel NOW!, forget the confusing and similarly named 2016 Marvel NOW!and especially forget the 2017 Marvel Legacy. Comics live and die on their jumping on points and both DC and Marvel have been very pro-active in recent years in trying to grab new readerships. Trying to catch up on over fifty years of storylines can turn a lot of people off and Marvel want to make it easy for new comers to pick up one of their titles. In swoops Marvel's 'A Fresh Start', “Not since Marvel NOW! have we had such an over-arching, line-wide change of talent on the Marvel comics line,” announces Editor-in-Chief C.B. Cebulski in the promotional short for the initiative.
Despite being short on specifics, Marvel told Polygon that further details will be trickle fed over the coming weeks with the launch of this series beginning in May of 2018, making it the second re-launch in just eight months for the company. Last year was a mixed bag for Marvel. Flagship writer Brian Michael Bendis left his role within the company and left behind his Iron Man series to sign an exclusive contract with DC, taking over Superman, with Dan Slott, long time Spider-Man writer, taking over the reigns on a new so far unnamed Iron Man series. Marvel Legacy, the intended harbinger of a new age for their comics, did not perform as expected.
The central focus of this promo seems to be Spider-Man, similar to how Iron Man was announced as the flagship hero for 2016's Marvel NOW! What that could mean for the web head is yet to be seen as well as the roles intended for other characters shown in the promo image. The video promises 'New series, new creative teams, new directions and new beginnings'. The first comic in this line is Avengers #1 featuring a team lineup of Captain America, Thor and Iron Man (Steve Rogers, Thor Odinson and Tony Stark) as well as Black Panther, Captain Marvel, Robbie Reyes' Ghost Rider and Jennifer Walters as Hulk. Doctor Strange is also depicted but his role in the Avengers is reported as being 'rotating', he's clearly got other things going on. Busy schedule full of clashes so he will probably be a sporadic addition.
This could be just what Marvel need after the accepted flop of Marvel Legacy that saw sales drop across all titles with issues being criticised for leaning too much on nostalgia and outdated themes. What do you think of this re-launch? Are you looking forward to seeing a focus on different characters or maybe you're sad to see the back of Marvel Legacy? Comment below or tweet us @ghoulishent.