Writer Jonathan Hickman's upcoming X-Men line relaunch in House of X and Powers of X won't just change the X-Men's status quo, it'll also expand on the traditional comic book format by including extensive backmatter, in the vein of Hickman's creator-owned Image Comics title The Black Monday Murders.
"I don't know if you've been paying attention to what Tomm Coker and I have been doing over at Image on The Black Monday Murders, but we started experimenting with larger issues at a higher price point," Hickman explained to CBR. "We'd do an issue with 30 pages of comic art and 20-30 pages of data that supports the story and what we found was 1) it provided a much denser read - there was way more meat on the bone compared to a normal monthly comic, and 2) because all the data was interspersed throughout the book it had an asymmetrical read that changed the normal monthly comic reading rhythms."
"Anyway, I bring that up because it's what we're doing with House of X and Powers of X," Hickman continued. "I know for the first issues of both the solicits say 40 pages / $5.99 but that's incorrect. The books are bigger than that because if we can provide good value, then it increases our odds the book will be judged solely on 'is it good?' And that's a challenge we're eager to undertake. Oh, I should also probably note that we're working with designer Tom Muller on the data pages. Very excited about that. Muller's got some serious game."
Hickman didn't specify what the "data pages" for House of X or Powers of X might consist of.
Beyond this revelation, Hickman was reticent to share details of his story, saying "I'm just not going to spoil the story for everyone who's looking forward to reading it."
However, Hickman did share a few pieces of key information, putting an end to some speculation about the titles - specifically telling CBR, "I will tell you that 'we' are not telling an Alt-Universe story," and "I'm not telling story that deals with time travel.
Hickman relayed one other piece of story information that may disappoint long-time fans of his Marvel Comics work. His X-Men run won't include Cannonball and Sunspot, who were important characters in his Avengers run.
"I won't be bringing them home," Hickman said succinctly.
House of X #1 with artist Pepe Larraz is due out July 24, followed by Powers of X #1 with artist R.B. Silva on July 31.