When Civil War II kicks off this summer, a decision by Tony Stark will spark a showdown between Stark Enterprises and the Inhumans in a tie-in story by Charles Soule in Uncanny Inhumans.
And according to the writer, the consequences of the battle will cause a major story beat that he's been planning for the Inhumans since he first wrote them.
The story, which was announced at C2E2, begins in Uncanny Inhumans #11 by Soule and artist Carlos Pacheco, and spins out of the events of Civil War II #2. Newsarama talked to Soule to find out more.
Newsarama: Charles, you're about a half-dozen issues into Uncanny Inhumans, but it looks like you have a tie-in story coming up for Civil War II?
Charles Soule: Yeah, issue #11 is where we start the tie-in to Civil War II, which is exciting because Civil War II is the big event coming from Brian Michael Bendis and David Marquez over the summer.
And just like the original Civil War, the idea is to have some very wide-ranging effects that are going to hit the entire Marvel Universe and really leave things changed.
Nrama: So are the Inhumans an important part of the Civil War II story? Because they're pretty important to the Marvel Universe lately.
Soule: Yeah, the Inhumans have been a big and growing part of the Marvel Universe for the last couple years, and a lot of that has been under my pen, which has been fantastic. And this is really the start of what I would consider the next big phase of Inhumans stuff.
There are, I guess you could say, three big beats that we're planning — three big milestones in the Inhumans story. And this story will set up the first of those.
And it will also be changing things for another big part of the Marvel Universe.
Nrama: Marvel has indicated the Inhumans will be adversaries of Tony Stark. Will we see the Inhumans versus Stark Enterprises?
Soule: Yes. The basic idea is that Tony Stark did something that Tony Stark was correct, and something he had to do — the way that Tony Stark often does. He's a person who feels like the moral authority he requires resides entirely within himself.
And as part of this decision that he makes, the Inhumans are… the word that comes to mind is disrespected, but it's a lot more specific than that. Their sovereignty is challenged. Their status as a nation is challenged.
So they're also in a situation that has no way out.
I feel like it's very much in the tradition of a Civil War story in which both sides have a point of view you can completely understand, and yet there's no real easy way to avoid conflict and to avoid fighting.
Nrama: Yeah, but when the Inhumans are part of a battle, things get ugly, don't they? That's a lot of power.
Soule: That's true. One of the things that's cool about he Inhumans, but is also challenging about the Inhumans, is that they are an immensely powerful group of super powered people.
Nrama: And there are more and more of them, thanks to the events of your series.
Soule: Right. They're a nation that's growing quickly, as the Terrigen Mists have been spreading around the globe. And they were already incredibly powerful before that. They have super-advanced level technology, and then the power that resides within their own bodies themselves is immense as well. I mean, there's Black Bolt, who can shatter the moon with a word, to Medusa and all the other great characters.
So you don't want to mess with them.
Tony didn't make the choice lightly, but now he's dealing with the consequence of it.
At the same time, Medusa is very much a diplomat, so she's trying to figure out a way to maintain the dignity of the Inhuman race, maintain the status of the Inhuman race, while also avoiding as much pain and heartache and destruction as she can.
Nrama: But this is a superhero comic. There's got to be a battle.
Soule: In the way of many wars, things tend to spiral out of control. And it goes really south really fast.
The action side of it is huge, and it's just really neat to see two real powerhouses of the Marvel universe going up against each other on this level. I'm using, like, all sides of this. Every one of the Inhumans has their own power set, but when you put them all together, you've got, like, this huge machine that you can reconfigure in different ways to reach different goals. And it's really fun to think of ways to do that.
Nrama: You mentioned before that Civil War II sets off the first of three major beats for the Inhumans that you're planning. It sounds like you've got pretty long-term plans for these characters?
Soule: Yeah, I'm a planner. Thinking about the payoff down the road is really fun. The way that this works probably is going to go, certainly, into 2017, and maybe even a little bit further. The journey to get there might be adjusted as we go, but I just think it's great to be able to lay out little seeds now for what's going to happen that far out.
And honestly, I've been laying them down since the very first issue of my Inhuman series that I did last year.
I think anybody who's been following these stories since then will find it really fun, to see how all of those dominoes start to fall.
But also, honestly, every storyline is designed to be picked up right away by new readers. We just had the "Quiet Room" story that started with #5, and this story that starts with #11 — you can really jump in at any time, which is very much by design.