Marvel’s much heralded relaunch of their line, Marvel Now to use the official title, has been heralded as the biggest thing to hit comics, well, since DC did exactly the same thing last year with the New 52 range.
That said, with Marvel’s stock never higher, it makes sense for the comic book giant to strike while the iron is hot and get as many new readers on board. If not now? When?
Having said that, is there a single comic book aficionado out there who believes that this is a permanent move? Call me overly cynical, but there’s a touch of the boy who cried wolf about the whole project.
It wasn’t that long ago that Marvel gave us a jumping on point for the majority of their titles, as recently as the end of the Dark Avengers storyline, which was awesome I hasten to add, three years ago.
So why should we buy into it again now?
The answer is simple. It’s because the direction that the expanded Marvel universe is moving in is simply compelling. If they have the courage to see this through then Marvel could very well wipe the floor with DC who, let’s face it, have dropped the ball somewhat spectacularly with the New 52.
Fans have been left scratching their heads trying to figure out the convoluted DC continuity in recent months and that doesn’t look like changing anytime soon.
On the other hand, Marvel’s move seems much more like evolution than revolution. One of the mainstays of the Marvel roster, I won’t reveal who conscious of spoilers, is well on the way to a complete transformation from superhero to deranged super villain, and with his younger self being thrown into our future it looks as if it’s going to be a permanent move.
Imagine DC turning The Flash into a morally ambiguous monster capable of killing thousands for an ideology. It just wouldn’t happen.
Plus the free digital comic with every copy bought off the newsstand is a very clever and appealing marketing move.
As long as Marvel NOW! doesn’t turn out to be yet another case of Marvel Again and Again then make mine …
I’m Paddy Ryan and you’re not.