Marc Buxton‘s weeklong predictions for All-New Marvel Now! continue!
Part 1, covering All-New Ghost Rider to Avengers World, can be found here.
Part 2, covering Black Widow to Iron Patriot, can be found here.
By MARC BUXTON
Loki, Agents of Asgard. Writer: Al Ewing. Artist: Lee Garbett. There is no hotter character in comics, and perhaps all current popular fiction than Loki. The trailers for “Thor: The Dark World” focused on the God of Mischief as much as they did the titular character. Marvel would be stupid indeed if they did not try to monetize this love of all things Loki. Spin-off characters from Thor have always been a hard sell, but by creating a title that basically mashes up the beloved Loki with Agents of SHIELD has marketing genius written all over it. Prognosis: Ewing and Garbett have potential success handed to them on a silver platter. If they nail it, and Ewing’s work on Mighty Avengers shows he can handle left of center projects, Marvel should have at least a critical darling on their hands. Begins in February.
Moon Knight. Writer: Warren Ellis. Artist: Declan Shalvey. Yet another character that even the hottest writers can’t seem to make sell, but with a new market, Marvel is trying again. And why not? When Warren Ellis decides he wants to guide the story of Marvel’s most batshit crazy character, any editor worth his red pen better f’n say yes! Ellis and the inherent insanity of Moon Knight is a match made in … somewhere very dark and disturbing. If Ellis gets his legions of fans to follow him on this book, things are looking good for the Fist of Khonshu. Prognosis: If and when a Moon Knight film or show gets off the ground, this will be the Moon Knight you will see portrayed. Ellis has a knack for finding the core enduring qualities of any character. He is the man who dusted off Iron Man a few years before the film hit, and look how that turned out. Begins in March.
Ms. Marvel. Writer: G. Willow Wilson. Artist: Adrian Alphona. When Marvel says they are committed to character diversity, they aren’t fooling around. Ms. Marvel will present the story of a super-powered teenage Pakistani Muslim girl written by a Muslim author. But all that diversity means nothing if the book stinks. One look at Wilson’s awesome Vixen mini-series for DC and Alphona’s groundbreaking work on Runaways proves this book will excel in every creative way possible. Fans of DeConnick’s Captain Marvel could stir up the pot for another hero that follows the Captain Marvel legacy. Prognosis: A teenage female hero written by a writer not known by the Marvel fan base? Not going to set the direct market on fire, but it should, because fans have been clamoring for this sort of diversity for years. Do they mean it or is it a façade to cover up fandom’s unwillingness to leave a comfort zone? This book should tell the tale because two magnificent creators are in place to tell the story of a hero that the market desperately needs. Begins in February.
New Warriors. Writer: Christopher Yost. Artist: Marcus To. Fan favorites Justice and Speedball team with the new Nova, an Inhuman, an Atlantean, and a Golden Age legacy character to form the new New Warriors. As derivative as that might sound, the book is in good hands with Yost who knows his way around the Marvel Universe, crafting well honed stories out of minutiae without reducing his narrative to continuity porn. To is a great artist whose clean style should serve the characters well. Prognosis: Despite the capable creators, Marvel has been banging their heads against the wall trying to get a teen team to work for the past decade. From the post-Allan Heinberg Young Avengers, to the Young Allies, to the Avengers Academy, to the post-Vaughn Runaways, the market just doesn’t seem to be there for Marvel’s teens. Let’s see if the Now! logo makes a difference. Begins in February.
The Punisher. Writer: Nathan Edmondson. Artist Mitch Gerads. Accompanying Daredevil out to the West Coast is the Punisher. As mentioned in the Black Widow entry, Edmonson is the perfect writer for these types of non-powered characters, but will he succeed saleswise where the likes of Greg Rucka stumbled? Rucka crafted the best mainstream Marvel Universe Punisher, well, ever, a few years back, and while sales numbers were not shameful, one of the best books on the market at the time was met with middling success. Is there an online audience just waiting for more Punisher stories, or will this be another Punisher book shooting in the dark? Prognosis: Punisher seems like a perfect character to exploit on the Netflix platform. If so, maybe a new audience will find this revamp where others in the recent past have failed. Begins in February.
NEXT: Secret Avengers to X-Force
THEN: The rebrands — All New X-Men to Winter Soldier