Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Joe Quesada had plenty to bring to the table during the two-hour Cup O’ Joe panel on Saturday afternoon at the second annual New York Comic Book Convention. While the panel served primarily as a sounding board for Marvel’s readership, Quesada kicked off the event with a grab bag of big project announcements for 2007.
First up was a pair of rather apocalyptic-sounding announcements concerning two of Marvel’s most beloved: Spider-Man and Daredevil.
Though little was revealed about the plot, the panel revealed art from J. Michael Straczynski’s Spider-Man: One More Day, penciled by Quesada himself. The story will likely deal with the fallout of Spider-Man’s true identity being revealed to the world in Marvel’s recent blockbuster event, Civil War.
Daredevil: End of Days is being billed as the last Daredevil story that will ever be told, essentially setting in stone the character’s destiny, an editorial move virtually without precedent in mainstream comics. Brian Michael Bendis and David Mack, both Eisner award-winners for their respective runs on Daredevil, will co-write with pencils provided by DD vets Klaus Janson, Alex Maleev, Bill Sienkewicz. Mack will contribute art, as well.
Quesada also previewed the follow-up to last year’s Annihilation, a sprawling event that restored Marvel’s cosmic characters to a prominent spot on retailers’ shelves. Annihilation: Conquest titles will follow Annihilation’s framework, with things being kicked off with a one-shot prologue (Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning) in June that will lead into three simultaneous mini-series shipping the following month. The Nova series from Annihilation will also carry over into Conquest.
Quasar (Christos Gage, Eric Basaldua) was described by the panel as a gothic/cosmic series and will focus on an interstellar quest carried out by the new female Quasar and Moondragon. For Starlord (Keith Griffon, Timothy Green II), the creators reached into the Marvel handbook and pulled together cosmic heroes from different decades. The result: a suicide mission story starring Rocket Raccoon, Captain Universe, Deathcry, Mantis, and Bug of the Micronauts. The final series, Wraith (Javier Grillo-Marxauch and Kyle Hotz), spotlights a brand new character designed to contrast the traditional bright and shiny intergalactic avenger. Expect a darker character along the lines of Daredevil or Batman.
The final mini-series tying the event together is set to launch at the end of 2007.
Quesada also announced an event that will feature Marvel’s mystic characters: Mystic Arcana. Two handbooks on magic-wielding characters will preface the event, which consists of four one-shots. Black Knight, Nico Minoru from Runaways, Illyana, and the Scarlet Witch will each star in a book. The announcement of the Scarlet Witch and Illyana titles sparked particular excitement, as the Scarlet Witch recently suffered a catastrophic breakdown and Illyana, a fan favorite, has been dead for years.
In more mini-series news, Brian Michael Bendis’s wildly popular New Avengers will meet the Transformers the same week Michael Bay’s Transformers hits movie theaters. Written by Stuart Moore and penciled by Tyler Kirkham (Phoenix: War Song), the wide-screen series will have a military theme and take place on the border of Latveria, which means Doctor Doom will likely make an appearance.
The creative team behind the long-anticipated Halo ongoing series was announced, as well. Eisner award-winners Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev will reunite to interpret the popular video game in the comics medium.
During the following Q & A, fans tried to pry more information out of Quesada with varying degrees of success. When asked about the return of Thor, Quesada simply said, “July. All will be resolved in July.” Asked about cosmic heavyweight Adam Warlock in the context of the Annihilation events, the panel simply replied that the right Warlock pitch just hadn’t come across their desks yet. Likewise, Nick Fury, the first man of Marvel universe espionage, is not set to return in a blaze of glory, but will continue to operate behind the scenes in various titles.
Photo by Tim Shey, courtesy of shey.net