Just as you may have thought Marvel would let their heroes and villains settle into the new status quo of the post-Empyre status quo everyone is in store for a busy October 2020. Not long after the end of Empyre we are going to be having the Marvel Universe stretched everywhere. That includes the threat that Venom has been dealing with threatening to destroy everything Empyre built and the X-Men heavily involved in the X of Sword crossover event. Let’s see all the things we should be keeping an eye out for with Marvel’s October 2020 solicitations.
X OF SWORD TAKES OVER THE X-MEN
If you didn’t know already then October is going to be hitting X-Men fans hard as every single title in the franchise is going to be part of X Of Swords. While I’ve only been reading a select number of X-Men books up until now I can’t fight the desire to buy every issue of X Of Sword, including the books I’m not getting. There is something about massive line-wide crossover events that just make it hard to resist when it comes to the X-Men. Jonathan Hickman and the X-Men crew are really tapping into the X-Men nostalgia with X of Swords crossover.
While a lot of the information is scarce when it comes to X of Swords we do learn from the X of Swords: Stasis #1 cover that Storm is going to be one of the sword wielders at the center of the event. She joins Wolverine, Apocalypse, Magik, Cable and Captain Britain/Psylocke as part of this X of Swords group. We know that there are four more unknown members that was teased in the recent X-Men: Free Comic Book Day issue that gave us the silhouette of 5 unknown sword wielders, which included the now confirmed Storm. It’ll be interesting to see what special property Storm’s lightning sword will have and how it relates to the other ten sword wielders.
THE LAST REMAINS OF AMAZING SPIDER-MAN BEGINS
Amazing Spider-Man is celebrating a lot of milestones in the upcoming months. For Nick Spencer, October 2020 will mark a major milestone for his run as he hits 50 issues of Amazing Spider-Man. That is a major mark for Spencer to hit. And it looks like with this big 50th issue Spencer is now fully ready to get into everything he has been building around Kindred. That has been a long time coming given that Kindred has been active since Spencer introduced the character with his first issue on Amazing Spider-Man. It is about time we actually learn about who Kindred is other than this creepy villain that is using other Spider-Man villains to do his bidding in causing chaos for Peter Parker’s personal and superhero life.
At the same time it does look like Spencer is going to be taking the Spider-Verse concept to the next logical step as we see that The Order of the Web will be fully active in Amazing Spider-Man #50. Bringing the Spider-Family together has been a long time coming. Given how many Spider-Man related characters are now in the main Marvel Universe, including Gwen Stacy’s Ghost-Spider, who recently joined the 616-Universe, there is a lot of potential with this Order of the Web. Don’t be surprised that once Spencer is done we see an Order of the Web series spinning out of the story. It could act as a replacement for Marvel Team-Ups and focus solely on developing the Spider-Family dynamic to eventually match the Avengers, Fantastic Four and X-Men.
MILES MORALES EXPERIENCES THE CLONE SAGA
Miles Morales is going to be an incredibly busy guy in October. We know that he is going to be involved in both Amazing Spider-Man’s “The Last Remnant” as an Order of the Web member and is working with the other Champions to deal with the “Outlawed” storyline. Now we see that in his own book Miles is going to have his own major event beginning as he experiences his own version of the Clone Saga. That is at least what seems to be implied by both the cover and solicitation for Miles Morales: Spider-Man #19.
The Clone Saga is always a major deal for any Spider-Family member. It’ll be interesting to see what twist Saladin Ahmed makes to differentiate Miles’ Clone Saga from that of Peter’s. There is a lot of potential if done right. Which villain is pulling the strings to this potentially new Clone Saga could also make or break this storyline.
EVERYTHING CHANGES FOR THE FANTASTIC FOUR
Out of all the characters involved in Empyre it looks like the Fantastic Four members are going to most directly impact by the event. Which makes sense given that right now Fantastic Four is the only series Dan Slott, who is co-writing Empyre with Al Ewing, is currently working on. Plus the Fantastic Four have always had the closest ties to whatever goes down with the Kree and Skrull Empires. That impact is going to be seen heavily impacting the status quo for the entire team starting with Fantastic Four #25. Adding in R.B. Silva, an artist that Marvel have been pushing as one of their big name artists thanks to his work on X-Men, shows that this next phase in Slott’s run.
Given how Fantastic Four #25 is phrased when it comes to the major return from the dead it could be that we are going to be seeing Silver Surfer pop back up. He is the biggest name that has been gone for a while that would have the most direct impact on the series. Especially given the Silver Surfer’s connection to the Fantastic Four, his reappearance could open up a lot of directions for Slott to take the series on.
What’ll also be interesting to learn is if the ending of X-Men/Fantastic Four will factor into the new era for the Fantastic Four. Because in that event we saw that Franklin Richards is now living on Krakoa to learn what is going on with his powers fluctuating so much. Given that Franklin Richards was shown as an active member of the Fantastic Four in Empyre maybe his stay on Krakoa was short. That would not be surprising given that Slott was not directly involved with the X-Men/Fantastic Four comic so he may be ignoring that event. We will have to wait and see what happens when Fantastic Four #25 comes out what directly impacts the franchise’s new direction.
RED SKULL RETURNS TO TERRORIZE CAPTAIN AMERICA
Red Skull is officially back from the dead with Captain America #24. Red Skull’s return was something teased in Captain America #23. Now that it is official there is a lot that Red Skull can take advantage of. Everything from the events of Empyre to the Outlawed storyline to the X-Men’s current status quo with Krakoa, it is all open for Red Skull to take advantage of. That will not be good news for anyone, especially Captain America.
That is really where I’ll be most interested to see with Red Skull’s return. Ta-Nehisi Coates has a chance to show us how Red Skull works in the current events going on in the Marvel Universe. All of the heroes, including Captain America, are being pulled in so many directions that a villain like Red Skull can really thrive as he looks to manipulate things to his advantage. It could all lead to Red Skull being one of the most dangerous villains running around the Marvel Universe right now.
CAPTAIN MARVEL GOES TO THE FUTURE
With Empyre behind Captain Marvel by the time October hits it will be time to see what is next for her character. The answer to what is next comes with Captain Marvel visiting the future. How far into the future Kelly Thompson takes Carol Danvers will be interesting to see. Will it be a future even further out than 2099? If so, how will any of the current, future, and past Marvel events factor into this story? These questions and more will be what will drive interest in the initial set-up of this new Captain Marvel storyline.
This is also an opportunity for Thompson to introduce and build new characters around Carol Danvers character. Thus far we’ve seen Carol mostly interact with other Marvel heroes. This storyline in the future is an opportunity to get Carol out of her comfort zone and interact with people and a world she is not familiar with.
VENOM ENDS EMPYRE’S IMPACT ON MARVEL UNIVERSE
Empyre barely ended and all the ramifications of the event will be tossed to the side as Knull, the symbiote villain Venom has been trying to hold back, is ready to take over. The status quo that Empyre is leaving behind being undone may be due to the real world affecting Marvel’s event schedule. That is definitely how it looks as Marvel didn’t want to push the Venom-centric event planned for the late-fall, early-winter months in the form of King In Black to 2021. They clearly wanted to stay on schedule for their events. Due to that Marvel is going to be minimizing the impact Empyre is supposed to have as all the heroes have to deal with the King In Black event.
With how big of a deal the King In Black event will be it’ll make the Web of Venom: Empyre’s End one-shot an intriguing comic. While not written by Venom writer, Donny Cates, this one-shot looks to be the bridge between Empyre and the upcoming King In Black. What end’s up happening in this one-shot will be something Venom fans will need to keep an eye out for.
ALL CAN WIELD THOR’S MJOLNIR
Since taking over Thor, Donny Cates has been teasing changes with Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir. We’ve seen how different Thor has been acting since taking over as All-Father of Asgard. That has effected how Mjolnir has acted in certain scenes.
Now with Thor #8 Cates is going to be taking this sub-plot with Mjolnir and bringing it to the forefront. In doing so, Cates is teasing major changes to Mjolnir as anyone will be able to wield the hammer without a prerequisite of being “worthy.” That would be a major change that could make things even more dangerous depending on who gets their hands on Mjolnir.
OUTLAWED FINALLY BEGINS FOR THE CHAMPIONS
After being hit with a major delay the Outlawed storyline will finally get to fully start in October. We already know that the Kamala Law is going to force heroes under a certain age to either have a sponsored mentor or not be allowed to continue being a vigilante. As we saw over in Ghost-Spider, that is not something the next generation of Marvel heroes are going to be for. How al the members of the Champions try to fight against the whole Kamala Law will be a big make or break for this new status quo for Marvel’s next generation heroes. Especially considering that Ms. Marvel and Miles Morales’ Spider-Man are the only young heroes with an ongoing series Outlawed is a major deal as it attempts to set-up the future for all these Champion characters.
Another thing to keep an eye out for with Outlawed is how all the Avengers, Fantastic Four, X-Men and other veteran heroes react to this news about the Kamala Law. In the Ghost-Spider issue, we saw that while Peter Parker wasn’t for the law he did try to sponsor Gwen to help make things easier for her as the whole deal with the Kamala Law is figured out. That showed that there will be a divide between the veteran and younger heroes that could play a major role in the story. That is if the Avengers, Fantastic Four, Spider-Man and others are allowed to take part in Outlawed since they are all busy with several major storylines at the same time.
DAREDEVIL AND SPIDER-MAN BEGIN TO REPAIR RELATIONSHIP
The status of the relationship between Daredevil and Spider-Man is something that Chip Zdarksy has been exploring as a sub-plot in his run on Daredevil. The last issue of Daredevil showed that there is a lot of tension between two former good friends. Now it looks like that is a sub-plot that Zdarsky is going to be exploring further as Spider-Man is prominently featured on Daredevil #23. It will be interesting to see if Zdarsky is slowly building things up for Daredevil and Spider-Man to become friends again as they can finally understand where each of Is coming from.
Another notable thing about Daredevil #23’s solicitation is the fact that we will begin to see the teased plans Elektra is developing in the background coming to the forefront. Elektra is such a wild card character and it looks like Zdarsky is tapping into that fact. It does seem like Elektra will be taking the organization she is creating to the next level and it will still somehow involved Daredevil. What that all means is anyone’s guess.
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