Civil Service1 of 12Marvel's July 2016 solicitations are here, and they lie smack-dab in the midst of Civil War II - with 29 various affiliated books, no less.
Unsurprisingly, the summer event will shake up many of Marvel's top titles, leading to some surprising - and revealing - tidbits to be unveiled in these ads.
As usual, Newsarama has dug through the solicitations to find the most important and interesting news to be gleaned. From surprise returns, to major deaths, here's what we learned from Marvel's July 2016 solicitations.
Hulkamania2 of 12July will see two issues of Totally Awesome Hulk hit stands, and the combined text makes it clear that something big is coming down the pike for Amadeus Cho – and possibly for his mentor, the former Hulk, Bruce Banner. Both solicitations make mention of a “tragedy,” while the text for Totally Awesome Hulk #9 says Amadeus will “lose someone close to him.”
During a conference call about Civil War II, writer Brian Bendis said that Civil War II #3 would feature a “controversial development” around the Hulk. “I’ll have to unplug my computer afterwards,” said Bendis.
These Totally Awesome Hulk solicitations, combined with the solicitation for Civil War II #3, which says one of Marvel’s “biggest heroes will fall” spells bad news for Hulk – or at least possibly Bruce Banner.
Silver Anniversary, Sort Of3 of 12Dan Slott and Mike Allred’s Silver Surfer has become a fan favorite, and with this week’s announcement of the 2016 Eisner Award nominees, a critical darling as well. Silver Surfer was nominated for several top awards, including “Best Continuing Series.”
Silver Surfer will reach another milestone in July, with Silver Surfer #6 constituting (acording to Marvel) the 200th solo issue for the sentinel of the spaceways.
Comings & Goings4 of 12July will mark many character returns for Marvel characters, including some fan favorites – and some unlikely cameos.
First off, Angela will return to the Guardians of the Galaxy in #10, while Dum Dum Dugan will resurface in New Avengers after the cancellation of his starring title Howling Commandos of S.H.I.E.L.D..
Also returning is Toxin, the symbiotic anti-hero who spun-off of Venom in Carnage #10, while Civil War II: Choosing Sides #2 features an appearance from Tom Foster, who inherited the mantle of Goliath from his uncle Bill Foster, who was killed in the original Civil War.
Meanwhile, Howard The Duck #9 teases a “shocking guest star” – which, given the book’s track record, could be anyone – and Ultimates #9 will feature a character named the “Macronaut,” possibly a reference to the former Marvel licensed property The Micronauts, who referred to the normal sized world as the “Macroverse.”
Spider-Gwen No More... Powers, that is5 of 12While Mary Jane may be getting a costumed identity of her own in Amazing Spider-Man, an alternate reality version of Peter’s former flame Gwen Stacy has become a fan favorite as Spider-Gwen. But there may be a slight problem – she’s lost her powers.
At least, she will when the current crossover “Spider-Women” wraps, according to the solicitation for Spider-Gwen #10. Peter Parker has lost his powers on a few occasions, but they’ve always returned. Hopefully Gwen’s fate will be the same.
Creative Differences6 of 12Buried amongst the summer event titles and ongoing series is several interesting comings and goings for creators in Marvel’s titles.
Chief among those is the apparent departure of Skottie Young from Rocket Raccoon & Groot. Young reall came into his own with the “Young Marvel” covers and this titles’ previous iteration, Rocket Raccoon, but in July he is absent as writer, artist, and even cover artist, in favor of comedian Nick Kocher and artist Michael Walsh. Neither Marvel nor Young has made a statement about this change to the ongoing, so stay tuned.
Meanwhile, Totally Awesome Hulk is preparing for a new series artist in Wierdworld’s Mike Del Mundo. With that title’s understated demise - it last solicited in May - Del Mundo is an interesting addition after previous series artist Frank Cho and guest artists Mike Choi and Alan Davis.
Meanwhile, the out-of-fashion ‘inventory’ issue gets a second chance with Spider-Man/Deadpool #7 and “guest” creators Gerry Duggan and Scott Koblish. June’s #6 is also solicited as a “guest” issue with different creators than Joe Kelly and Ed McGuinness, who started the series; but Marvel ensures retailers in the solicits that the original duo will return at some unspecified point. Duggan and Koblish look to be bringing their popular “lost issue” theme from Deadpool to this team-up series in this one-off issue.
And finally, former Action Comics co-writer/artist Aaron Kuder is returning to Marvel after three years at DC, with covers to Civil War II: Kingpin and two issues of Captain America: Steve Rogers. Kuder has yet to announce his next interior project, so this could be a portend for future work, as he has not been listed in any of DC’s Rebirth solicits.
Civil War Buddies7 of 12The original Civil War centered on a clash between Captain America and Iron Man. But according to the solicitation for Invincible Iron Man #11, Steve Rogers and Tony Stark may find themselves as unlikely allies in the sequel, Civil War II, while the teaser text for Captain America: Steve Rogers #4 says Steve will try to broker a truce between Tony and Captain Marvel.
Likewise, in All-New Wolverine, X-23, may be getting some help from an unlikely source in the form of Old Man Logan, a grizzled version of her former mentor from an alternate future. This version of Logan has been reluctant to embrace the idea of his Wolverine identity, so seeing these two team up will likely lead to adamantium sparks flying.
Finally, two villains who have recently operated as allies – Baron Zemo and the Red Skull – may be coming to blows as the solicitation for Captain America: Steve Rogers #3 teases a “Hydra Vs. Hydra” showdown between the former allies.
Iron Family8 of 12Ever since Kieron Gillen revealed that Tony Stark was adopted in his Iron Man run, the question has remained about who Tony’s real parents are. And while it’s still a mystery, it looks like it’s about to be solved in International Iron Man #5.
The solicitation says Tony will be faced with the “true identity” of his parents. Brian Bendis, the issue’s writer, has said that being an adoptive parent himself has given him a major stake in telling Tony’s story, so expect the revelation to make waves.
And no, I don't think think that's one of Tony's parents in the cover, innuendos of The Graduate or not.
Iron Spider9 of 12Peter Parker has always been bolstered by his supporting cast, and it looks like July will see some shake-ups to characters that have been part of Peter’s world for some time.
For starters, Mary Jane is back in his life as of Amazing Spider-Man #15 - but with a twist. The cover shows her wearing Peter’s former costume from Civil War, the hi-tech, Tony Stark designed “Iron Spider” suit. MJ has been a supporting character in Invincible Iron Man for some time, where it’s been rumored she’d get a costumed identity all her own. Could this tie in to that?
Meanwhile, in Civil War II: Amazing Spider-Man #2, Peter will apparently have to deal with a traitor in Parker Industries – whose identity is implied to be Harry Osborn. Despite being Peter’s best friend, Harry has occasionally gone bad, even briefly taking up the mantle of the Green Goblin in his villainous father Norman’s footsteps.
Strange Tidings10 of 12Judging by the recently released trailer, Marvel’s Doctor Strange film looks to recount the story of how Steven Strange went from disgraced surgeon to Sorcerer Supreme. But Marvel’s Doctor Strange Prelude #1 makes it sound like, when this “prelude” takes place, he’s already a fully functional magic wielder. Remember, "prelude" means "introduction," as in "takes place before."
The solicitation also mentions a team – the “Masters of the Mystic Arts.” That’s an appellation that’s been given to Doctor Strange many times in the past. But who is the team he’ll be sharing it with, and will they be a part of his film?
Judge, Jury & Executioner11 of 12Two of the most talked about moments of the original Civil War II was the deaths of Goliath and Steve Rogers (albeit in the coda). Marvel Editor-In-Chief Axel Alonso said that a “key” death was one of the earliest things discussed in the planning of Civil War II, and that looks to be occurring in July’s Civil War II #3.
”This is the one everyone will be talking about! One of the biggest heroes in the Marvel Universe will fall! Who it is and how and why will divide fans for years to come. Will the heroes of the Marvel Universe survive the unthinkable happening? The fallout to this issue is enormous!”
Peeling back the hyperbole, there has been no hints as to whom this will be – save Dan Slott saying he had to convince Brian Michael Bendis not to have it be Peter Parker. The mention of it being “one of the biggest heroes” could refer to popularity or size, and somewhat coincidentally the Hulk appears on the cover ripping Iron Man a part. What’s curious about that is that it doesn’t appear to be the “Totally Awesome” Amadeus Cho Hulk, but rather the Bruce Banner Hulk who has been absent since the onset of “All-New All-Different Marvel.” Artist error, or something else? Meanwhile, Bendis said in a recent conference call about Civil War II that #3 would feature a “controversial development” revolving around the Hulk.
And speaking of deaths, The Vision #9 joins in to ring the funeral bells, with one of the Vision’s newly-created family having to “pay with their life.” It could be the Vision himself, but also – and perhaps more likely – one of his family that was recently introduced by Tom King and Gabriel Hernandez Walta.
Lastly, Civil War II #4 portends a “trial of the century,” complete with verdict. No mention if the trial is quick justice on the apparent murder in #3, but it seems more than just coincidental that a trial for Maria Hill was name-dropped simultaneously in the solicits for Captain America: Steve Rogers #3. Could it be fall-out from the Pleasant Hill prison at the center of Avengers: Standoff, or something else. And are the two connected?
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