As some things come to an end other things are just beginning over at Marvel Comics. In July alone we will be seeing Captain America and Amazing Spider-Man relaunched with new creative teams. In addition Marvel is giving several characters their own mini-series and ending a favorite comic of mines come July. That is all on top of all the things going on with Infinity Countdown and the X-Men. Let’s see what exactly is taking place in the Marvel Universe with the company’s July 2018 solicitations.
SECRET EMPIRE STILL HAUNT CAPTAIN AMERICA
While Secret Empire was touched on briefly at the beginning of Mark Waid and Chris Samnee’s run it was quickly put to the side as they moved Captain America to a future setting. Now with that story over Ta-Nehisi Coates is coming on board to explore the exact ramifications of the events that took place in Secret Empire. Given that there is no way to completely destroy Hydra having Captain America deal with the organization’s world takeover aftermath is appropriate thing for Coates to tackle. And having Leinil Franchis Yu does show that Marvel is going to heavily invest in this new Captain America series as they give Coates some name recognition on art while he continues to build a name within the Marvel fanbase.
What will be most interesting to see is how deep Coates goes into the events of Secret Empire given how controversial the event was. The solicitation for Captain America #1 does seem to indicate that Coates won’t shy away from the controversy Nick Spencer created with his Secret Empire event. How Coates ties things in could make or break things for fans looking to read a Captain America comic.
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN NEW CREATIVE TEAM
The decisions made during his Captain America run and Secret Empire made Nick Spencer a controversial writer among Marvel fans. While Spencer does have his set of fans there are a large part of the fanbase who do not like him as a comic creator. So because of that damage there won’t be a lot of fans jumping on to read Spencer’s run Amazing Spider-Man. What will be important is that Spencer is able to deliver what the fans, which I do include myself in that camp, who will pick up his work on Amazing Spider-Man want from the series. If he can grab their attention in a positive way the fans who were turned off by his work on Captain America may eventually give his Amazing Spider-Man a chance down the line.
What will help Spencer out a lot is the fact that the incredible Ryan Ottley is going to be the new artist for Amazing Spider-Man. Ottley working on Spider-Man is a dream pairing. Ottley showed he can draw an incredible superhero comic with his work on Invincible. With Spider-Man hitting a similar note as Invincible there is no doubt that Amazing Spider-Man will at least look great.
CAPTAIN MARVEL’S DEFINITIVE ORIGIN
With the announcement of “The Life of Captain Marvel” we are going to possibly see hints of what Marvel now sees should be Carol Danvers origin in the movies. It is a good time to do that since 2019 will be a big year for the character. Though it’ll be interesting to see what changes Margeret Stohl makes to Carol Danvers origin, as there are sure to be some. One change that may be made is rewriting her history as Miss Marvel since it is clear that Marvel wants everyone to see Carol as always having been Captain Marvel. How exactly that is executed makes The Life of Captain Marvel something to look out for.
GHOST RIDER ROCKETS OFF TO SPACE
Ghost Rider is clearly a character who is becoming a special project for Marvel. On top of the characters inclusion in the Avengers Marvel is sending Ghost Rider into space. Cosmic Ghost Rider certainly sounds like something that you would only see in a comic book. Marvel making Cosmic Ghost Rider a mini-series is a smart choice. This gives the company an opportunity to see if there is any actual interest in a Ghost Rider series that takes place in space. If it does not find enough of a readership to become an ongoing than Marvel won’t have to worry about upsetting anyone since technically it won’t be canceled. It’ll just end after 5 issues that is perfect for a future collection.
LAURA KINNEY IS X-23 AGAIN
Mariko Tamaki is not a writer I am familiar with at all. I have no past with reading Tamaki’s work in the past. That said, after how Laura Kinney’s time as Wolverine went I am still up for more solo adventures with the character. The reason as to why Laura is returning to her X-23 identity since the original Logan will not return to being Wolverine by the time July hits will be an interesting mystery. Because you would think that there has to be a big reason for Laura to give up her Wolverine identity. What that reason is and why she is going back to being X-23 is a nice way for Tamaki to begin her run.
DEATH OF THE INHUMANS
After pulling out all of the stops to make the Inhumans on the level of the Avengers and X-Men it is clear the experiment was not a success. Sure the Inhumans have more of fanbase now but they are far from being a franchise that sells out prints of individual issues. Now with that in mind it is interesting to see Marvel give the franchise an event of sorts in the form of the Death of the Inhumans. The mini-series could be a good way to pull back on trying to make the Inhumans a thing that is not special since Marvel previously an Inhuman. What role the franchise has coming out of Death of the Inhumans may make the mini-series something to keep an eye out for at the very least.
INFINITY WARS KICKS OFF
It’s a bit crazy to think that Marvel’s next event won’t kick off until July with Infinity Wars Prime #1. By this point it’ll feel like we have been dealing with the war over the Infinity Gems since the beginning of the year. That is mostly because of how long Infinity Countdown is going with its main series and tie-in comics. Though I will give Gerry Duggan credit for doing a good job in getting over the importance of the Infinity Gems during Infinity Countdown. Hopefully with how much build up there was to the event that Infinity War is not more than 6 issues. If it is more there could easily be fatigue with Infinity Wars by the time the first issue hits.
SPIDER-GWEN COMES TO AN END
Jason Latour and Robbi Rodriguez several year run on Spider-Gwen, a character created during the Spider-Verse event, is coming to an end in July. While the solicitation for Spider-Gwen #34 does not mention Latour and Rodriguez run is ending we got confirmation of that over on Latour’s Twitter account. As someone who has championed Spider-Gwen since it was launched as a solo series this is a sad thing to hear. Latour and Rodriguez did a lot of great work in developing Spider-Gwen’s own version of the Marvel Universe. Not only was Gwen Stacy made even more compelling than her 616-counterpart as Spider-Woman we saw a lot of interesting new versions of classic Marvel heroes in the series.
With Spider-Gwen part of the Marvel Rising line Spider-Gwen #34 probably won’t be the last time we see the character. Maybe she gets the Miles Morales treatment and her universe merges with the Marvel Universe in another Spider-Man event down the line. Her popularity would certainly make something like that happen.
IRON MAN AND PUNISHER GO TO WAR
Looks like someone finally woke up to the fact that Punisher has been running around in his old buddies armor. Iron Man fighting the Punisher was something you knew would happen when the latter started wearing the War Machine armor. And given that recent Iron Man solicitations tease the return of Rhodey this needed to happen. It also about time someone put Punisher in his place since it never looked right that he was running around as War Machine without any of the Avengers being aware of that. And Iron Man being the one to put an end to it in Punisher #228 is an appropriate way to do it.
MYSTERIOUS X-MEN COMIC BOOK
There are a lot of things going on in the X-Men corner of the Marvel Universe from Wolverine continuing his return to Magneto possibly returning to being villain in July. But out of all the things shown in the July 2018 solicitations what was most eye catching was the”X Classified” listing. Given that there is an “X” in the title this does seem to be a big event for the X-Men that Marvel doesn’t want to spoil, which is an un-Marvel thing to do. There are a lot things that this could be including being the beginning of the original X-Men’s return to their timeline that Marvel indicated would begin soon as an event comic book.
Though given the classified status this could be something that hasn’t been teased. With both Wolverine and Jean Grey recently returning it would be great to see this be a series about bringing Cyclops back. He is last of the iconic X-Men that is not around at the moment and it would be great to see Cyclops be brought back as a hero rather than the villainous figure he was portrayed as over the last few years.