NYCC 2013: ‘Silver Surfer’ and more All-New Marvel Now reveals

Oct. 12, 2013 | 8:16 p.m.
inhumanity1 NYCC 2013: Silver Surfer and more All New Marvel Now reveals

"Inhumanity" No. 1, by writer Matt Fraction and artist Olivier Coipel, arrives Dec. 4. Cover art by Coipel. (Marvel)

allnewinvaders NYCC 2013: Silver Surfer and more All New Marvel Now reveals

"All-New Invaders" No. 1, by writer James Robinson and artist Steve Pugh, has a cover by Mukesh Singh. (Marvel)

infinity5 NYCC 2013: Silver Surfer and more All New Marvel Now reveals

"Infinity" No. 5, by writer Jonathan Hickman and artist Jerome Opena, has cover art by Adam Kubert. It's out Oct. 23. (Marvel)

[Updated 6:35 a.m. PDT Oct. 13 with images from All-New Marvel Now announcements]

It was code-named “Rad!,” and the crowd agreed that it was when the mystery All-New Marvel Now project from writer Dan Slott and artist Mike Allred was revealed to be “Silver Surfer,” greeting the news with sustained applause Saturday afternoon at Marvel’s “Inhumanity” panel at New York Comic Con.

The writer said the series, about the “most [Jack] Kirby-ish of characters doing the most insane stuff in weird, cosmic, quirky places” will feature a notable new presence, a sort of companion for the alien hero (Slott has often talked and tweeted about being a “Doctor Who” fanatic).

“When you think of the Silver Surfer, you think of the lone sentinel of the skyways,” Slott said. “He’s always very lonely on that board all by himself. And this is a book about a girl onboard … a kindred spirit who’s an Earth girl. And you’re going to find out the universe is more fun when you see it with someone.”

After an “aww” from the crowd, he said, “Yeah, you’re going to buy it.”

Slott (“Superior Spider-Man”) had long wanted to write a series starring the bearer of the Power Cosmic, he said, because the first comics he read were the Galactus trilogy in “Fantastic Four,” the issues that introduced the character, then the herald of the world-consuming villain; he later made a college newspaper superhero strip that was “a shameless ripoff of the Silver Surfer.” (He also accidentally showed a crowd at WonderCon in March that he might have something for the character in the works.)

Allred, who was unavailable because of his “FF” work when the title was being developed, was fixed in Slott’s mind as the perfect artist for it, the writer said.

“I was writing Mike Allred’s Surfer,” he said, and then received word that the artist had become available. “When we gave Mike the first plot, he read it and was like, ‘Did you write this for me?’ I’m like, ‘Yes!’” And Allred might be the only “Silver Surfer” artist who’s actually a surfer, Slott added.

The reveals didn’t stop there.

“Ghost Rider,” from writer Felipe Smith and artist Tradd Moore, is the project that had been code-named “Overdrive.” Editor Mark Paniccia promised a Rider “like you’ve never seen before,” and executive editor and moderator Tom Brevoort said it is probably his favorite of the All-New Marvel Now titles, the first of which begin rolling out in January; “Ghost Rider” will debut in March.

“I didn’t even know we were doing this book,” said “Infinity” writer Jonathan Hickman, apparently honestly. “This is so exciting.”

"Iron Patriot" No. 1 is by writer Alex Kot and artist Garry Brown. Cover by Brown. (Marvel)

“Iron Patriot” No. 1 is by writer Alex Kot and artist Garry Brown. Cover by Brown. (Marvel)

What had been teased as “Defend,” from writer Ales Kot and artist Garry Brown, will be “Iron Patriot,” and will launch in March – and that drew some celebratory screams for fans of Iron Man colleague James Rhodes. Paniccia said the character “gets fed up” with what he’s been doing in “Secret Avengers,” also being written by Kot.

“He decides it’s time to defend the home front, and this is about the challenges of doing that,” Paniccia said. “He’s a character that … comes across as sort of an Iron Man duplicate, and I think that Ales has a concept … that’s really going to make him feel like his own guy.”

The panel also covered its titular event, “Inhumanity,” the upcoming miniseries written by Matt Fraction that will follow the Hickman-led cosmic event “Infinity” (which features Thanos) and run in December and January. It will bring the Inhumans – a superhuman race that predate superheroes and mutants in story chronology, as Marvel editor in chief Axel Alonso noted – to the fore of the Marvel Universe. They first appeared back in “Fantastic Four” No. 45 in 1965, by Stan Lee and Kirby.

In “Infinity,” their ruler, Black Bolt, has set off a bomb over New York that released Terrigen Mist, which alters Inhumans’ biology, giving some superpowers. “Inhumanity” will flow out of that. The hidden Inhuman diaspora are being activated, Hickman said, including Thanos’ son Thane.

“Inhumanity” will be felt in many other titles, including Hickman’s “New Avengers” and, notably, two issues of “Avengers Assemble” co-written by Kelly Sue DeConnick (“Captain Marvel”) and Warren Ellis (“Transmetropolitan,” “Iron Man”) as the fallout from Black Bolt’s actions continues.

“We’ve had a plan for a while to sort of narrow the gap between the cosmic universe and the Earth-bound heroes, and we’ve successfully done that with things like ‘Guardians of the Galaxy,’ ‘Nova’ and now ‘Infinity,’ and the Inhumans are part of our long-term plan,” Alonso said. “You’ll want to know who they are because they’re going to matter.”

One place they’ll certainly matter is in the January launch of the previously announced “Inhuman” No. 1 by Fraction and Joe Madureira, the kickoff title of All-New Marvel Now, which will follow a new set of Inhumans.

“This is about normal people who wake up one day to discover they’ve got this incredible power and, even more, that they’re linked to this age-old society that’s kind of weird and divided and strange,” Alonso said, “and they’re going to have to do all that and find out who they are – and not everyone is going to like their powers.”

"All-New Invaders" No. 1, by writer James Robinson and artist Steve Pugh, has a cover by Mukesh Singh. (Marvel)

“All-New Invaders” No. 1, by writer James Robinson and artist Steve Pugh, has a cover by Mukesh Singh. (Marvel)

Also coming up is the previously announced “All-New Invaders,” from writer James Robinson and artist Steve Pugh. It reunites the World War II team of Captain America, Bucky, Namor and the original Human Torch (Jim Hammond) in the present, Paniccia said. The story involves a device the alien Kree had that could control the Asgardians; back in the war, Bucky, Namor and the Torch stopped and hid the device. The Kree discover the device still exists. Later, asked in the reader Q&A whether Captain America would be involved, the editor said the other three go to the super soldier for help coming up with a plan, which involves invading the Kree home world. “And you can’t do that without Cap,” Paniccia added.

DeConnick, a late arrival, said during the reader Q&A that in “Captain Marvel” No. 17, Carol, who sacrificed her identity and memory in the “Enemy Within” crossover, “finds a way to connect to who she was that is visceral and gives meaning to that sacrifice.”

The panel also touched on “Cataclysm” in Marvel’s Ultimate line. It’s an event with Galactus doing what Galactus does best: consuming a planet (and, it seems, the 13-year-old Ultimate universe). Discussing the grim proceedings clearly affected Paniccia, who stepped away for a few minutes before returning. Toward the end of the hour, a reader said he appreciated seeing the level of commitment the editor had to those lines. Paniccia called him up for what someone called an “ultimate hug.”

New York Comic Con, with an expected crowd of 130,000, is the East Coast’s largest pop-culture expo. The four-day event continues at the Jacob K. Javits Center in Manhattan through Sunday.

— Blake Hennon | @Blake Hennon | @LATHeroComplex


"Loki: Agent of Asgard" No. 1 variant cover by Frank Cho. (Marvel)

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2 Responses to NYCC 2013: ‘Silver Surfer’ and more All-New Marvel Now reveals

  1. Tim Markin says:

    How committed are they to these titles? I mean, we’ve seen how many relaunches of the Surfer and Ghost Rider? And when is Superior Spider-Man going away and we see the return of Peter Parker?

  2. blakehennon says:

    Hi, Tim. Thanks for reading! From observing the panels, the people at Marvel seem confident in these new approaches to these characters. I'm sure that if they catch on and sell well, they can have long runs. If they don't, well, expect more cancellations for these characters' solo titles. It is a for-profit business. A fan asked Axel Alonso in the "Avengers" comics panel at NYCC about why some characters can't seem to sustain solo titles. The Marvel chief said they've had long discussions trying to figure that out. Sometimes an approach works; sometimes it doesn't. As to Peter Parker, whenever someone asks Dan Slott about that, he shouts "He's dead!" But, well, we both know this is comics and things change. (See the convoluted history of the lives and deaths of Jean Grey.) The story beginning in "Superior Spider-Man" No. 27.NOW was code-named "The End." The end of what, exactly, is unclear. Time will tell.

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