NYCC 2019 Commentary: Marvel Relaunches Iron Man, Guardians of the Galaxy and Thor

Marvel 2020 Relaunch

There was no way that Marvel could not announce relaunches for current ongoing series at New York Comic Con 2019. It would not be a big Comic Con without Marvel making that type of announcement. That is exactly what they did as Marvel announced that Iron Man, Guardians of the Galaxy and Thor will all get newly relaunched ongoing comic book series starting in January 2020.

With these new comics comes some changes from previous volumes. While Dan Slott and Christos Gage will remain writers for the newly titled Iron Man 2020 they will now be joined by Pete Woods as the artist for the series. With Guardians of the Galaxy the Marvel’s hot new writer Donny Cates is coming on board to take over alongside Nic Klein as the artist. Finally, Al Ewing, who is working on the critically and commercially acclaimed Immortal Hulk series, is the new writer for Thor with Juann Cabal as the artist.

These are all notable creative teams. Do they all work for the new comics they were given by Marvel? Let’s take a closer look. 

IRON MAN 2020 BY DAN SLOTT, CHRISTOS GAGE AND PETE WOODS

IRON MAN 2020 BY DAN SLOTT, CHRISTOS GAGE AND PETE WOODS

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Outside of Spider-Man and the X-Men, Iron Man has been one of my favorite Marvel characters since I started reading comics. There have been a lot of great runs, including in the modern era from Warren Ellis, Matt Fraction and Charles and Daniel Knauf. Unfortunately the recent runs from Brian Bendis and now Dan Slott and Christos Gage have not been what I’ve wanted from an Iron Man series.

Now having Pete Woods on board for Iron Man 2020 is definitely a noteworthy thing for this new series. But what completely derails the hype for Iron Man 2020 is that it will now be Arno Stark, Tony Stark’s adopted brother, wearing the Iron Man armor. This makes no sense since we just got Tony back as Iron Man. Not that long ago the Iron Man identity was split between Doctor Doom and Ironheart when Tony went into a coma during Civil War II and became a digital program. For Tony to be replaced yet again just makes Arno Stark taking over as Iron Man just feels repetitive.

What also does not help the confidence in the long-term future of this series is that Marvel specifically titles it Iron Man 2020. Giving it the upcoming year as part of the title immediately means this Arno Stark era as Iron Man is a short term thing. Like they always do, Marvel will likely relaunch Iron Man 2020 by the end of next year and then announce Tony’s return in 2021 under a title like Invincible Iron Man. 

THOR BY DONNY CATES AND NIC KLEIN

THOR BY DONNY CATES AND NIC KLEIN

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Donny Cates is quickly becoming one of Marvel’s big name writers with his fan favorite Venom series and success with the current Absolute Carnage event. With Jason Aaron wrapping up his run on Thor with King Thor it was obvious that the franchise was going to be in need of a relaunch. That is not an easy task given that it always incredibly tough for any creative team to follow up after a long, critically-acclaimed run is over.

Tapping Cates as the new writer to take over after Aaron’s epic run is the right move. Cates is a writer that is continuing to move up the ladder and giving him a high-profile series like Thor shows that Marvel fans. For their part, it shows Marvel’s confidence in Cates to follow up on Aaron’s incredible work on Thor and run the franchise in a new direction.

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY BY AL EWING AND JUANN CABAL

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY BY AL EWING AND JUANN CABAL

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Out of all the new ongoing series that Marvel announced Guardians of the Galaxy is the one I’m most hyped about. For how popular the franchise has been thanks to the Marvel Cinematic Universe movie, Guardians of the Galaxy has been faced with relaunch after relaunch for years now. Which is surprising since even the most recent run with Donny Cates was a solid seller for Marvel.

That said, what makes this new volume of Guardians of the Galaxy exciting is that it will be written by Al Ewing with artwork from Juann Cabal. Ewing has quickly established himself as a big name with his work on Immortal Hulk. Not only is Immortal Hulk well-received by fans but it is also one of Marvel’s top selling books. Having that notoriety from his work from Immortal Hulk should immediately draw interest for Ewing’s run on Guardians of the Galaxy. It is a great title for Ewing to stretch his creative muscles as he will now be able to explore Marvel’s cosmic corner.

Juann Cabal being on board as the artist builds even more hype around Guardians of the Galaxy. Cabal is one of Marvel’s best artists. His work on All-New Wolverine and Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man has all been fantastic. Cabal has drawn some of the most stunning comic book pages from his work on both titles. Now getting the chance to draw Guardians of the Galaxy gets me excited for what Cabal will deliver when working on Marvel’s cosmic corner.

SOURCE: HOLLYWOOD REPORTER


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