From Spidey returning to his old stomping grounds to Sam Wilson reclaiming an old identity, it’s the Marvel Legacy edition of the best and worst solicitations.
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Let’s be honest: those Marvel Legacy covers didn’t set the internet on fire, much less “change the comic book industry.” However, now the solicitations for some of those covers have been released (via Newsarama and CBR), they at least provide better context than before. As we did last time, we’ll be taking a look at a select grouping of October 2017 Marvel comics solicitations which stood out the most.
No matter which one you look at, they each evoke some aspect of Marvel’s past. Some of these titles have also gone back to what Marvel has dubbed “legacy numbering.” Other titles have some characters returning, or about to return, towards a previous status quo. Call it nostalgia, or retro, or “going back to basics,” it’s all designed to piqué your interest. Question is, which one of these does a better job at doing this?
"SPIRITS OF VENGEANCE #1 (of 5)VICTOR GISCHLER (W) • DAVID BALDEON (A)COVER BY DAN MORAVARIANT Cover by MARK TEXIERALH Variant Cover by KEN LASHLEYLegacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONEHOW-TO-DRAW VARIANT COVER BY CHIP ZDARSKYTrading Card Variant Cover by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHERWAR AT THE GATES OF HELL Part 1A dead angel. A silver bullet. A kept promise. For ages, the war between Heaven and Hell raged in the unseen corners of society, both sides in delicate balance that could topple if the right weapons were in the wrong hands… When an undercover angel is murdered, Johnny Blaze, the Ghost Rider, must find the killers and punish them…But this time he won’t do it alone: A deadly team must rise from the darkest depths of the Marvel Universe to form an unholy alliance – HELLSTORM! SATANA! BLADE! They are the SPIRITS OF VENGEANCE! PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and a TBA artist!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"
Commentary: Other than Doctor Strange, the supernatural side of the Marvel Universe hasn’t gained much traction over the years. Comics like Ghost Rider and Blade have struggled to get off the ground despite their cult followings. Perhaps this is also why this is only a miniseries. Even so, having the original Ghost Rider, Blade, Damien Hellstorm and Satana together as a team is a decent method for reinvigorating them. Although, if Marvel really wanted to evoke some nostalgia, they could’ve titled this series “Midnight Sons.”
"AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: RENEW YOUR VOWS #12RYAN STEGMAN (w)BRIAN LEVEL (a)Cover by RYAN STEGMAN• It all comes down to this!• Normie Osborn vs. the Spider-Family!• Everything changes after this. Guaranteed.32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"
Commentary: We already know based on the Marvel Legacy covers what changes are in store for Renew Your Vows. In light of this, there’s definitely a feeling that a chapter is closing in the lives of the Parkers while reading this solicit. Besides, twelve issues, or a year’s worth of comics, is a good place to end the Normie Osborn storyline.
"Credit: Russell Dauterman (Marvel Comics); Wraparound cover for The Mighty Thor #700MIGHTY THOR #700JASON AARON (W) • RUSSELL DAUTERMAN, WALTER SIMONSON, OLIVIER COIPEL, CHRIS BURNHAM, JAMES HARREN AND MORE! (A)WRAPAROUND Cover by RUSSELL DAUTERMANLH VARIANT COVER BY STEPHANIE HANSBLACK & WHITE WRAPAROUND VARIANT COVER BY RUSSELL DAUTERMANLEGACY HEADSHOT VARIANT COVER BY MIKE MCKONEVARIANT COVER BY ADAM HUGHES1965 T-SHIRT VARIANT COVER BY JACK KIRBY TRADING CARD VARIANT COVER BY JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHERMOVIE VARIANT COVER ALSO AVAILABLEHOW-TO-DRAW VARIANT COVER BY CHIP ZDARSKYDEATH OF THE MIGHTY THOR Part 1The final judgement comes as the Mangog arrives! The War Thor will meet the beast head on. But even the bloodthirst of this Ultimate Thor may pale in comparison to the might of the Mangog! The battle rages as Jane’s cancer takes a turn for the worse, and she might not have to wait for the final judgment at all. The clock is ticking, and no hammer can save her this time. It’s the beginning of the end that will lead to the most dramatic return in the Marvel Universe!PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and a TBA artist!64 PGS./Rated T+ …$5.99"
Commentary: I suppose “the most dramatic return in the Marvel Universe” is Thor Odinson becoming worthy to wield Mjolnir again, right? After all, Jason Aaron’s run has headed towards this direction for some time when you take into account the “King Thor” future scenes. The question is: would Aaron really go through with killing off Jane Foster? It’s possible. Jane Foster became Thor when Natalie Portman still played her in the movies. But since Portman quit and refuses to take part in any future Marvel film, perhaps that’s all the excuse Marvel needs for killing Jane off.
"FALCON #1RODNEY BARNES (W) • JOSHUA CASSARA (A)Cover by JESúS SAIZLH Variant Cover by ELIZABETH TORQUELegacy Headshot Cover by MIKE MCKONEVariant Cover by JOSHUA CASSARAHOW-TO-DRAW VARIANT COVER BY CHIP ZDARSKYDesign Variant Cover by ALEX ROSSTrading Card Variant Cover by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHERTAKE FLIGHT Part 1Sam Wilson – winged warrior, avian Avenger and one-time sentinel of liberty – takes to the skies again, reborn and recommitted as the fighter for freedom, THE FALCON! Engaged in an all-new assignment while training his new partner THE PATRIOT, Sam Wilson soars high and sees all. But Sam’s new mission finds him on a collision course with an enemy way out of his weight class—the demonic BLACKHEART! Writer Rodney Barnes (THE BOONDOCKS) joins artist Joshua Cassara (SECRET EMPIRE: UNDERGROUND) to challenge Sam Wilson as never before! From the stratosphere to the streets, the Marvel Universe now has a high-flying hero circling above them ready to strike! PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and art by Mark Bagley!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"
Commentary: From a marketing standpoint, it makes sense for Sam Wilson to don his original costumed identity again. Most people are more familiar with Sam as the Falcon thanks to the Marvel Studios films. And his stint as Captain America further boosted his profile among comic readers. The big drawback? The new costume. Even though its intent is to evoke his original outfit, it’s still a terrible and distracting design. Although, in fairness, Falcon’s various costumes haven’t looked all that great either.
"SPIDER-GWEN #25JASON LATOUR (W) • ROBBI RODRIGUEZ (A/C)Cover by KHARY RANDOLPHLH VARIANT COVER BY KHARY RANDOLPHLegacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONEHOW-TO-DRAW VARIANT COVER BY CHIP ZDARSKYTrading Card Variant Cover by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHERGWENOM Part 1Gwen’s life irrevocably changes as she bonds with her universe’s version of the Venom symbiote. What does it mean for her relationship with crime kingpin MATT MURDOCK? With her father? With THE OSBORNS?! Is any relationship in Gwen’s life safe? It’s SPIDER-GWEN like you’ve never seen her before, and this time, there’s no easy fix for her troubles! PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and art by Mark Bagley!32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"
Commentary: Yes, the much-anticipated “Gwenom” story, which is also reportedly Robbi Rodriguez’s swan song on the title, is finally happening … almost two years after first being announced at 2016’s C2E2. Hopefully, once this issue does hit the stands, it will have been worth the wait. However, I don’t doubt the sales for this issue to be quite high. It’s not only a Spider-Man related comic involving Venom, but also the twenty-fifth “anniversary” issue of the only breakout character from “Spider-Verse.”
"AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #789 & #790DAN SLOTT (W) • STUART IMMONEN (A)Covers by ALEX ROSSLH Variant Cover by ALEX ROSS (Issue #789)Legacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONE (Issue #789)1965 T-SHIRT VARIANT COVER BY STEVE DITKO (ISSUE #789)Blank Variant Cover also available (Issue #789)THE FALL OF PARKER Part 1Down on your luck Peter Parker is back, for good or ill. New York has changed, and so has Peter – but entering a new phase of his Spider-Man life isn’t easy; neither are new relationships OR new foes. Peter Parker is not the Spider-Man you remember, but why is he taking his fight to THE DAILY BUGLE? And what happened to PARKER INDUSTRIES?PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and art by Mark Bagley!32 PGS. (EACH)/Rated T …$3.99 (EACH)"
Commentary: Peter losing Parker Industries is a welcome (if predictable) turn of events. However, based on the online chatter, there’s not a lot of enthusiasm over him returning to the Daily Bugle. It just feels like too much of a step backwards. Dan Slott stressed in interviews Peter is not becoming a photographer again. Personally, I think Peter will have J. Jonah Jameson’s job as the Bugle‘s publisher and editor, meaning Jonah will now work for him.
"DESPICABLE DEADPOOL #287 & 288GERRY DUGGAN (W) • SCOTT KOBLISH (A)CoverS by DAVID LOPEZPromo Variant Cover by CLAYTON CRAIN (ISSUE #287)LH Variant Cover by SALVA ESPIN (ISSUE #287)Legacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONE (ISSUE #287)Secret Comic Variant Covers by SCOTT KOBLISH (ISSUES #287-288)Blank Cover Variant Available (ISSUE #287)DEADPOOL KILLS CABLE Parts 1 and 2Deadpool’s going back to his vile beginnings as a mercenary and wanted killer. No more being a hero. No more X-Men. No more Avengers. And if he wants to break bad again, what’s more despicable than killing your best friend? Cable better get ready because his old friend Wade has him in the crosshairs. PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and a TBA artist!32 PGS. (EACH)/Parental Advisory …$3.99 (EACH)"
Commentary: “Despicable” is a great, catchy and amusing adjective for a character like Deadpool. Also, it makes narrative sense his reputation in the hero community has suffered a serious setback with his siding with Hydra during Secret Empire. Nevertheless, I think it would be a mistake for Wade Wilson to regress back into what he was during the early 1990s. Unless, of course, the gag is he’s trying too hard to be that “serious” antihero again.
"INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #593BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS (W) • STEFANO CASELLI (A)Cover by ADI GRANOVLH Variant Cover by ALAN DAVISLegacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONEHOW-TO-DRAW VARIANT COVER BY CHIP ZDARSKY1965 T-SHIRT VARIANT COVER BY JACK KIRBYTrading Card Variant Cover by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHERTHE SEARCH FOR TONY STARK Part 1Tony Stark has vanished! The mystery deepens as Stark friends and foes must decide, finally, who will wield the power of Iron Man! All the contenders are in position, and all the armor is polished. There can only be one Armored Avenger! The path to the most startling Iron Man story ever begins here! PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and a TBA artist!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"
Commentary: Okay, so we have Riri Willaims / Ironheart, Doctor Doom and, based on upcoming Marvel Legacy covers, Frank Castle / The Punisher wearing the War Machine armor. Why do I get the feeling this is Iron Man’s version of “The Reign of the Supermen”? Also, I think Adi Granov’s cover kind of gives the game away as to who will be the one and only Iron Man once “The Search for Tony Stark” finishes. As long as we don’t also have a return of “Teen Tony,” it’s all good.
"INCREDIBLE HULK #709GREG PAK (W) • GREG LAND (A/C)LH Variant Cover by MIKE DEODATO JR.Legacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONE1965 T-SHIRT VARIANT COVER BY JACK KIRBYRETURN TO PLANET HULK Part 1When Amadeus Cho picks up a distress signal from a distant planet he’s shocked to find out it’s from SAKAAR. As the Totally Awesome Hulk, he’s been trying to avert the curse of anger that haunted Bruce Banner. But SAKAAR is a place for warriors and gladiators…a place where the Hulk fought brutally in the Imperial Arena…who is calling Cho for help? PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and a TBA artist!32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"
Commentary: Planet Hulk is, without question, one of the best epic Hulk stories in the last ten years. It’s no wonder that Planet Hulk‘s author, Greg Pak, would write a sequel to bolster interest. After all, sales on Totally Awesome Hulk have been abysmal. Hence, why the comic is also back to using The Incredible Hulk title and its original numbering.” Whether or not this will also bolster interest in Amadeus Cho as the Hulk remains to be seen.
"VENOM #155MIKE COSTA (W) • MARK BAGLEY (A/C)Variant Cover by Francesco MattinaLH Variant Cover by FRANCESCO MATTINALegacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONEHOW-TO-DRAW VARIANT COVER BY CHIP ZDARSKYTrading Card Variant Cover by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHERLETHAL PROTECTOR Part 1Something sinister is lingering in the darkest depths of New York and no one is safe! But even the monsters have something to fear when the world’s deadliest hunter Kraven makes them their prey. Their only hope is Venom, a lethal protector who can make the hunter…the hunted. PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and art by Mark Bagley!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99VENOM #156MIKE COSTA (w) • MARK BAGLEY (a/C)LETHAL PROTECTOR Part 2• Venom has found himself caught in Kraven’s crosshairs!• With the Hunter armed to the teeth and hungry for blood, will Venom be able to hold him off long enough to protect the dinosaur community living beneath the streets of Manhattan… and himself?!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"
Commentary: One of biggest missteps in Spider-Man comics in the last couple of years was resurrecting Kraven the Hunter. “Kraven’s Last Hunt” effectively ended his story. Unfortunately, solely because of nostalgia for that classic Spider-Man tale, “The Grim Hunt” brought Kraven back. Not surprisingly, he’s been aimless ever since. Something tells me this aimlessness will continue, even though he’ll be going up against Venom. Also, nice of the solicit to spoil the outcome of “The Land Before Crime.” At least Mark Bagley will be the regular artist.
"VENOMVERSE #5 (of 5)CULLEN BUNN (W) • IBAN COELLO (A)Cover by NICK BRADSHAWVariant Cover by Declan ShalveyConnecting Variant Cover by CLAYTON CRAINPoison Variant Cover by ELIZABETH TORQUETHE CONCLUSION OF THE VENOM EPIC OF THE YEAR ARRIVES!• Even with Carnage on their side, the Venoms find themselves against the ropes with the clock ticking.• The threat of the Poisons is looming over the Marvel Universe larger than ever, and the Venoms have no choice but to make some sacrifices…32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"
Commentary: If “Venomverse” is akin to “Spider-Verse,” does this make Carnage the Superior Spider-Man of the group? I just hope the phrase about the Venoms having “to make some sacrifices” isn’t suggesting Flash Thompson be killed off. But I can see this event doing exactly that — just to make it feel more “important.” If this indeed happens, I don’t believe fans will take kindly to having a major Spider-Man supporting character dying outside the pages of Spider-Man.
"Credit: Arthur Adams (Marvel Comics); covers for X-Men: Gold #13 and X-Men: Blue #13X-MEN: GOLD #13MARC GUGGENHEIM (W) • MIKE MAYHEW (A)Cover by ARTHUR ADAMSLH Variant Cover by BEN CALDWELLLegacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONETrading Card Variant Cover by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHERB&W CONNECTING VARIANT COVER BY ARTHUR ADAMSHOW-TO-DRAW VARIANT COVER BY CHIP ZDARSKYMOJO WORLDWIDE Part 1Mojo, the demented creature obsessed with melding deadly television shows with reality, has made Earth his focus and it’s going to take the combined might of two X-MEN teams to fight back! But when threats from their past are thrown at them, how will these teams react? With SENTINELS and BROOD and BAD MEMORIES attacking at every opportunity, will KITTY and JEAN and their teams be able to save Manhattan? Or is this the trick that finally boosts MOJO’s ratings? PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and art by Mark Bagley!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99X-MEN: BLUE #13CULLEN BUNN (W) • JORGE MOLINA (A)Cover by ARTHUR ADAMSLH Variant Cover by DAVID LOPEZLegacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONEB&W CONNECTING VARIANT COVER BY ARTHUR ADAMS1965 T-SHIRT VARIANT COVER BY JACK KIRBY MOJO WORLDWIDE Part 2The X-Men may have bitten off more than they can chew when the Mojoverse continues its bizarre invasion of MANHATTAN! JEAN GREY and her team fight side by side with KITTY PRYDE and her team…but can MOJO be defeated when he’s got the X-Men’s greatest hits weaponized against them? Or will an unlikely alley come to the rescue? PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and art by Mark Bagley!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99X-MEN: GOLD #14MARC GUGGENHEIM (W) • R.B. SILVA (A)Cover by DAN MORAMOJO WORLDWIDE! Part 3BROOD and DARK PHOENIX and MOJO – Oh my! The Mojoverse continues its bizarre invasion of MANHATTAN! With reality-warping resources at the tips of his gross fingers, Mojo may finally have the upper hand against our beloved mutants…32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99X-MEN: BLUE #14CULLEN BUNN (W) • JORGE MOLINA (A)Cover by ARTHUR ADAMSMOJO WORLDWIDE! Part 4Continuing from X-MEN GOLD #14, JEAN GREY and her team fight side by side with KITTY PRYDE and her team! But can MOJO be defeated when he’s got the power of history on his side? It’s going to take one unlikely Mojoverse ally to help our heroes out!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"
Commentary: As a means of reviving the X-Men franchise, ResurrXion is a disappointment. Nevertheless, Marvel looks like they’re trying even harder at recapturing X-Men’s glory days with this Mojoverse crossover. Easier said than done considering how X-Men fans still aren’t happy with how Marvel diminished the franchise for so many years in favor of the Inhumans. Plus, I’m not sure if there’s a big demand for Mojo considering how some see him as one of the worst X-Men villains of all time.
"AVENGERS #672MARK WAID (W) • JESúS SAIZ (A)Cover by ALEX ROSSLH Variant Cover by MICHAEL ALLREDLegacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONEJack Kirby 100th Anniversary Cover by JACK KIRBY 1965 T-SHIRT VARIANT COVER BY JACK KIRBY AND DON HECKWORLDS COLLIDE Part 1Following the events of GENERATIONS comes the long-promised clash between the Avengers and the Champions! The countdown has started as the High Evolutionary, a twisted scientist determined to create a better world at all costs, sets the Earth on a collision course with destruction! The Avengers and the Champions are ready to meet this threat — but will their first cataclysmic clash deter them from Changing the World? PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and a TBA artist!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99CHAMPIONS #13MARK WAID (W) • HUMBERTO RAMOS (A/C)LH Variant Cover by DAN MORALegacy Headshot Variant Cover by MIKE MCKONEHOW-TO-DRAW VARIANT COVER BY CHIP ZDARSKYTrading Card Variant Cover by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHERWORLDS COLLIDE Part 2The titanic clash between the Champions and the Avengers continues! Since they were old enough to say the word “Avengers,” the Champions have idolized Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. Now the two teams are on equal footing — and the Champs must walk the walk alongside their former mentors! Will their experiences in GENERATIONS help them — or tear the two teams apart? PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and a TBA artist!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"
Commentary: You would think after Civil War II and Secret Empire Marvel would want to scale back on the hero vs. hero stories. Some things never change, I guess. I also find it odd that while Avengers is going back to its “legacy numbering,” Champions will not. I’m also not convinced a crossover between the two titles that’s a quasi-sequel to “The Evolutionary War” is an ideal way of bolstering the profile of both series.
All we can do now is wait and see whether these, or other upcoming titles, will live up to what these solicits are promising. In the meantime, which of the Marvel Legacy titles are you most looking forward to, and were they even included on this list? Do you believe Marvel is even taking the right approach with Marvel Legacy?