Marvel is going to be continuing their early 2024 by placing an even heavier reliance on the Spider-Man and X-Men franchise. With Spider-Man it looks like we have several different major comics to go along with the Gang War storyline over on Amazing Spider-Man. Meanwhile the Fall of the House of X and Rise of the Powers of X continues to dominate for the X-Men franchise. What else can we expect in the second month of 2024 from Marvel? Find out with our breakdown on the biggest takeaways from Marvel’s February 2024 comic book solicitations.
ULTIMATE BLACK PANTHER VS MOON KNIGHT
In the spirit of its predecessor, the new Ultimate Universe is a brand-new opportunity to reimagine characters without worrying about continuity. That is an opportunity that Bryan Hill and Stefano Caselli as the creative team for Ultimate Black Panther are taking. At least that is what appears to be the case with Moon Knight being reimagined as Black Panther’s first villain. It certainly shows that the Ultimate Universe will be placed to expect many characters to take on different roles than their Earth-616 counterparts.
What makes Ultimate Moon Knight being the first villain Black Panther takes on is that it’ll be Khonshu and Ra as Moon Knight. This indicates that Ultimate Black Panther will deal more with mythology across Africa rather than be focused on just Wakanda. Which would help it further be distinct from the Black Panther ongoing series on Earth-616.
At the same time, based on what happened in Ultimate Invasion it’ll be interesting what the state of Wakanda will be. Wakanda was not shown being part of the United Nations cabal that The Maker created. That creates a lot of questions around what form we will see Wakanda take. Given the political dealings going on in this Ultimate Universe, Ultimate Black Panther has the chance to be even more important in terms of grander story developments than Ultimate Spider-Man.
SCARLET WITCH & QUICKSILVER TEAM-UP
Since returning to full-time superheroes Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver have been kept away from working together. They have had various interactions, but they could be categorized as brief. This could be because Quicksilver in the Marvel Cinematic Universe was killed off so on the comic book front, they wanted to spotlight Scarlet Witch without her brother. Though the recent Scarlet Witch series did show that Wanda and Pietro Maximoff still had a familial bond going.
Now finally we will see Wanda and Pietro teaming up again in a new Scarlet Witch & Quicksilver mini-series. Steve Orlando staying on makes it so this new mini-series will act as an extension of his Scarlet Witch run. Which is a great thing as Orlando did a great job modernizing Wanda to work as a solo hero.
The timing of Scarlet Witch & Quicksilver is also an interesting one. The solicitation for Scarlet Witch & Quicksilver #1 mentions Magneto as a catalyst for this series. Given that Magneto’s return is happening at the same time along with the Fall of the House of X and Rise of the Powers of X event, Scarlet Witch & Quicksilver could be tied into the greater X-Men direction. Which is something Marvel has been slow playing getting Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver back into the X-Men fold since the Hellfire Gala 2022.
ULTIMATE GREEN GOBLIN IS IRON MAN’S SUCCESSOR
Marvel sure is doing all they can to paint the Osborns a heroes. First it was with Zeb Well’s current Amazing Spider-Man where Norman Osborn became the heroic Gold Goblin. Now in Ultimate Spider-Man Jonathan Hickman and Marco Checchetto will be positioning Ultimate Green Goblin as a hero. Or at least that is what the solicitation for Ultimate Spider-Man #2 teases.
Given the way the Ultimate Spider-Man #2 solicitation is worded it won’t be a surprise if this is an act by Ultimate Green Goblin. The question is who is Ultimate Green Goblin? Because at the end of Ultimate Universe #1 we know Norman Osborn is among the names killed, along with May Parker and Emily Osborn. This could mean Harry Osborn uses the Iron Man tech to become Ultimate Green Goblin. Or somebody else is wearing the suit.
DOCTOR STRANGE PAYS CAPTAIN AMERICA AND DAREDEVIL A VISIT
February may be Doctor Strange’s most popular month in a long time. That is because not only does he have his own ongoing series to appear in. No that is not good enough for a good doctor. Doctor Strange will in fact also be making guest appearances in Captain America #6 and Daredevil #6. Those three Doctor Strange appearances in one month. Marvel better slow down before overexposing him like Wolverine.
Joking aside there does appear to be a bit of magical synergy with both Captain America and Daredevil dealing with threats that need magical help. The appearance in Daredevil is likely to be the more long-term guest appearance given the mystical nature of how Saladin Ahmed and Aaron Kuder started their run. This won’t be the last time Daredevil calls Doctor Strange for help given the demons he is now dealing with.
SPIDER-MAN GANG WAR SETTING UP MADAME MASQUE AS NEXT BIG THING
As February brings the Amazing Spider-Man “Gang War” storyline to a close we see one major trend in most of the comic books. And that is the elevation of Madame Masque, normally an Iron Man villain, to be a major threat. That is certainly a welcome development as Madame Masque has always been a villain with potential but never got beyond secondary antagonist status.
The solicitations for Amazing Spider-Man and Daredevil: Gang War is heavily pushing to change that fact. Madame Masque even appears to be positioned as the final boss of the big evet. If handled correctly that could set up Madame Masque to be a major player moving forward. One can only hope, even if that hope is slim given Marvel’s track record with developing major villains.
DEATH AND ROMANCE FOR SUE STORM IN 2024
Sue Storm will surely remember how her 2024 will begin. That is because in her first solo adventure of the year she will discover her own corpse from tens of thousands of years ago in Fantastic Four #17. That is certainly one way to place all the focus on Sue Storm for February’s Fantastic Four issue. This discovery should place an emphasis on Sue’s skills beyond her powers.
Luckily it won’t be a completely dark month for Sue as Reed Richards has a special date night planned for them. Reed is not known as the most romantic guy but even he knows how to do something big for a wedding anniversary. That should balance out what Sue goes through in the main story of Fantastic Four #17.
CYCLOPS LATEST MEMBER OF SPIDER-MAN FAMILY
Marvel has not been afraid of bringing their two most popular franchises in Spider-Man and X-Men together more often the last few years. Spider-Man has had a long frenemies-like relationship with Wolverine. Storm has also been featured in her own version of the Spider-Woman costume in celebration covers. Most recently Spider-Man gave Nightcrawler one of his suits to become the Uncanny Spider-Man to hide from Orchis in the public.
Now we can add Cyclops to the list as he is covering character for the new Edge of Spider-Verse mini-series. To maximize the popularity of this version of the character right away Spider-Clops looks to be an amalgamation of Cyclops, Spider-Man, and Wolverine. That certainly sets up Weapon VIII, aka Spider-Clops, to reach similar popularity as Felicia Hardy’s version of Spider-Woman in the previous Edge of Spider-Verse mini-series.