Updated May 8, 2019: Marvel Editor-in-Chief C.B. Cebulski has once again offered personal promotion of a Marvel Comics teaser, pointing fans to a series of presumed creative team announcements for unrevealed titles, potentially related to the E-i-C's previous talk of his plan to sell a million copies of a comic book.
Cebulski's continued Twitter promotion, coupled with his statement last week that more hints at his million-selling idea were on the way, suggests that perhaps these creative teasers are connected to the million copy pledge. Is there a chance that in addiion to creative teams for multiple titles, the creators will launch their new projects as part of a single, large anthology title, sharing some DNA with 2017's 64-page Marvel Legacy #1?
The $5.99 Marvel Legacy #1 was written by Jason Aaron and drawn by Esad Ribic and sold approximately 300k copies in the Direct Market. Could a similar title but with multiple high profile creative teams making high profile Marvel debuts and returns, the promise to set up the next era of Marvel Comics, the standard metric ton of variant covers, and maybe a more attractive price point to boot result in a boost to 1 million copies sold?
It's starting to look like we'll find out what Cebulski is planning with Marvel's August 2019 solitications later this month, if not sooner.
Updated May 3, 2019 at 4:27 p.m. Eastern: Marvel Comics' Editor-in-Chief C.B. Cebulski has an "idea" for a comic book that could sell over a million copies, but he has clarified that it's not a Star Wars relaunch. Newsarama speculated that as one of two possibilities after Cebulski's initial tweet earlier Friday (see below).
"Good guesses, folks, but it is not a Star Wars relaunch," Cebulski tweeted. "For a story firmly set in the Marvel Universe. More hints next week..."
While Cebulski nixed that (a Star Wars-Marvel Universe crossover set in the MU? nah), he didn't outright rule out Absolute Carnage as we also considered (again, see below).
For the record, the last time a comic book set in the Marvel Universe sold over a million copies would be in the 1990s, and 2015's Star Wars #1 sales figures were helped by dozens variant covers, so Cebulski's 'idea' would be mostly unprecedented if he's referring to anything resembling a standard Marvel comic.
Does the E-i-C have a game-changer up his sleeve could this be a case of marketing through meta-will power? We should find out more next week.
Original Story: Marvel Comics Editor-In-Chief C.B. Cebulski says he's got an idea for the next comic book to sell a million copies, nearly five years after Marvel's Star Wars #1 hit that mark in January 2015.
"The last comic to sell a million copies was Star Wars #1. Which was almost five years ago. I feel it's about time we publish another title that sells over seven figures. And I think I have an idea..." Cebulski said cryptically on his personal Twitter.
Cebulski offered no further context on what his idea may be - but we think two possibilties make sense.
The first is August's Absolute Carnage #1. Creators Donny Coates and Ryan Stegman have been using social media to market the idea the launch will eclipse Jim Lee's X-Men #1's 8,104,611 copies sold.
FYI: I'll return to Venom with issue 16! And then I'll be writing ABSOLUTE CARNAGE and VENOM at the same time. @RyanStegman will be on ABSOLUTE CARNAGE. VENOM will have an awesome new (secret) artist!— DONNY CATES (@Doncates) March 22, 2019
Also, we're all pretty sure ABSOLUTE CARNAGE will outsell @JimLee's X-MEN #1! pic.twitter.com/lBjKwJRhfc
(Marvel debuted that slide during a panel at C2e2, so they're in on it too.)
Of course that's almost certainly not going to occur, but you can't blame creators to use a little hyperbole to promote their work and maybe Marvel internally plans to will it into huge sales, with Cebulski lending his support. Stegman did reply to his tweet reminding him of their playful prediction.
Uh not sure if you got the memo but we are gonna do it— ryan "venom boy" stegman (@RyanStegman) May 3, 2019
But an alternative may be teed up in the text of Cebulski's tweet itself.
With Marvel Comics' August 2019 solicitations arriving later this month, now might be the perfect time to start teasing a Star Wars relaunch, complete with a new Star Wars #1. Launching in August or September would give just the right window to put a collection of the new Star Wars issues in stores alongside Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker in December. Or a November of December series relaunch would give a new #1 the full force of Episode IX's marketing window and a fighting change of huge initial sales.
Remember, albeit 11 months before, Star Wars #1's January 2015 launch not only marked the return of the franchise to Marvel, but also drafted on the build-up of anticipatiokn to The Force Awakens December debut that same year.
The solicitations for July's Star Wars #68 and #69 don't directly hint at the title ending, but with a new creative team coming on board for a story that takes readers right to the most popular era of the Star Wars saga - The Empire Strikes Back - it could indicate Marvel is ready to follow their standard business model and relaunch with a new relaunched series that jumps to the period between Empire and Return of the Jedi.
Slying comparing Stars Wars sales to Star Wars sales positively as seems straight out of the social media marketing playbook.