6 Things I Want From the All-New, All-Different Marvel Universe
I have always been a Marvel Zombie and I’m proud to admit it. Spider-Man and the X-Men got me into comics in the 90s, and the publisher has simply always been better than DC Comics, as far as I’m concerned. The characters are better, the themes are stronger and, especially in the past few years, Marvel has been putting out better comics.
So you’d think I’d be a little more freaked out by the apparent Marvel Universe reboot coming our way this fall.
But I’m not freaked out at all. Personally, I don’t really think it’s going to be a reboot. I think Marvel is using Secret Wars to do a little garden-tending, and the Marvel Universe will look pretty much the same on the other side. But even if it’s not, I’ve been through enough alleged ‘major changes’ in comic books that I’ll weather this one just the same. As long as Marvel keeps putting out good comics, I’ll keep reading.
Though I do have a few suggestions for the New MU…
6. The Return of Multiple Man
It’s been almost two years since my favorite comic book character has been out of comics entirely, and that makes me a sad panda. Granted, Multiple Man disappeared in probably the best way possible: retiring to a peaceful life of happiness with his wife. In comic books, characters don’t often get that kind of wonderful swan song. I should be grateful that he wasn’t killed off or simply cancelled. Writer Peter David had enough time and pull to give Multiple Man a happy ending.
But comic book characters never stay gone forever, so he’s bound to return someday. So why not in the New MU? I don’t have any suggestions really — other than Marvel hiring me to write his comic — so I don’t particularly care how they use him. His last iteration, as a private detective, was pretty darn amazing and skyrocketed the character to popularity. But maybe somebody else has a new and interesting idea. Or maybe he’ll be slotted into a new team comic. I don’t know, and I won’t mind whatever Marvel does. I’d just like to read Multiple Man comics again.
5. Don’t Ruin Miles Morales Too Much
We already know that Miles Morales, the Ultimate Spider-Man, is going to get folded into the regular Marvel Universe after Secret Wars. There are going to be two Spider-Men swinging around the New MU. This is something I do not particularly want, and have written about before. Miles’ story is so personal, so tied to his existing world, that I just don’t think it will work as well if he’s suddenly shifted off to another dimension. The very fact that his origin now includes him being the Spider-Man of an alternate reality kind of ruins his grounded, realistic tale.
But I don’t get to make these decisions, so I’m just going to have to live with it. I just hope Marvel doesn’t mess him up too much. We already know he’s going to be a member of the new Avengers, which I also don’t care for. I understand that Miles is too popular to lose alongside the Ultimate Universe, but I have yet to be convinced that Miles will be as good when he’s thrust into a strange alternate reality setting. Miles was pretty close to perfect as a grounded young man in the Ultimate Universe. I hope Marvel finds a way to keep him grounded and keep him real, even if they have to re-write parts of his origin. I can live with that.
4. Make A-Force Legit
A-Force is the all-female superhero team that’s getting a lot of hype as part of Secret Wars, and there are rumors that it’s going to continue as a regular series in the New MU. I read and reviewed the first issue for Word of the Nerd and I was quite disappointed. Rather than being a legit team or a new version of the Avengers, A-Force literally was just a random collection of female characters crammed together for the purpose of fulfilling their gimmick. There was little done to actually build A-Force into the context of Secret Wars or create any unity between the team members. It was like playing with a bunch of random action figures from different toylines and pretending they’re a team.
So if A-Force is to continue in the New MU, that is the perfect opportunity to make them a legit team. Give them a real background and a real origin. Give them a reason to be a team beyond the gimmick. Pick characters who make sense together and have a reason for teaming up. And if you want them to be considered an Avengers team, then call them ‘Avengers’ and don’t be afraid to own it.
3. Ms. Marvel Staying Exactly the Same
I don’t care what Marvel does with probably 99% of their characters and their comics. But if there’s one thing I can have in the New MU, please keep Kamala Khan exactly the same as she was before. Don’t change her origin, don’t cancel her comic, don’t find a new writer. I don’t like that she’s being put on the Avengers, but again, I don’t make those decisions. I have to live with that Avengers thing. But beyond that, please just go back to publishing Ms. Marvel comics as if Secret Wars and the New MU never happened. Pretty please? Pretty please with sugar on top?
2. A Stream-Lined X-Men
There has been a ton of talk about what’s going to happen to the X-Men after Secret Wars, none of it particularly good. The simple fact is, the head honchos are Marvel have their panties in a twist about the fact that they don’t own the movie rights, so both the X-Men and the Fantastic Four are being cut out of everything Marvel — but X-Men comics are so profitable, that Marvel can’t just cancel them all and forget the X-Men ever existed.
If this ‘X-Men in space’ idea is true, then I think this is the perfect opportunity to streamline the X-Men and make them more manageable. For years now, Marvel has juggled dozens of different X-Men comics and directions. Whether it’s Cyclops the renegade, the wacky Jean Grey School, the all-female team, the latest X-Force revival or the time-displaced original team, Marvel has been all over the place with the X-Men. So now is the time to cut back on the excess comics and refocus the X-Men. Maybe just one team, maybe just one or two comics. We don’t need endless spin-off comics and multiple X-teams. If you want to downplay the X-Men in the Marvel Universe, then trim the fat.
And find some place to put Multiple Man.
1. Keep the Marvel NOW! Style
When DC launched the New 52 by rebooting their characters into a specific, gritty house style, Marvel responded by going in a somewhat opposite direction with Marvel NOW! Marvel turned their characters over to the creators and let them tell new, unique and diverse stories. Some of them were soft reboots, some of them had nothing to do with anything or anyone else. But almost all of them made for great comics. There’s G. Willow Wilson’s Ms. Marvel, there’s Matt Fraction’s Hawkeye, there’s Dan Slott’s Silver Surfer, and many, many more from the past few years.
And I’ve loved almost all of it! Marvel NOW! has been a pretty amazing campaign producing some truly great comics.
So much so that DC has switched their house style to a more Marvel NOW! approach beginning this very day! Check out new issues of Bat-Mite, Bizarro and Black Canary this month, among other new, unique and diverse comics.
Whatever Marvel does this fall after Secret Wars, I hope they keep the spirit of Marvel NOW! alive. They let the creators tell really creative stories, and while not all of them were commercial successes, they were almost all great comics. Keep that up, Marvel, and you can go through however many reboots you want.
And maybe hire me to write a Multiple Man/Ms. Marvel one-shot! I’ve got ideas!
What do you want to see in the New MU? Any specific characters who would be brought into the limelight? Any comics that should be forgotten? Any Secret Wars characters that you want to see stick around? Let me know in the comments!
Posted on June 3, 2015, in Avengers, Comics, Lists of Six!, Marvel, Multiple Man, X-Men and tagged A-Force, Kamala Khan, Miles Morales, Ms. Marvel, New MU, Secret Wars. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.