April 25, 2018 - HUNT FOR WOLVERINE #1, DARTH VADER #15, DARTH VADER VOL. 2 - LEGACY'S END
This week is huge. No other way to describe it. Three books out from me: HUNT FOR WOLVERINE #1, DARTH VADER #15 and the second volume of that series, LEGACY’S END, which collects issues 7-12.
Let’s go with our friend Logan first. Here’s the amazing A cover, drawn by my friend Steve McNiven, with inks by Jay Leisten and colors by Laura Martin, who I’ve only met once, on a cruise ship. (She’s great!)
There are a bunch of variants, drawn by amazing folks like Adam Kubert, Marcho Chechetto, Gabrielle Dell’Otto and more, if that’s your thing. There’s a black and white version of the A cover I’d like to get my hands on myself, actually. But let’s talk about what’s inside, eh?
Back in 2014, Steve McNiven and I (along with Jay Leisten, Justin Ponsor and Chris Eliopolous) created the DEATH OF WOLVERINE series. Four issues, which killed off Logan… for good. He ended up dead as hell, killed by adamantium, stuck inside a molten shell of the hardest metal around that cooled around him, killing Wolverine to death and leaving him more or less a statue, an icon. So dead.
Back in the Marvel Legacy one-shot last year, we saw that Logan’s resting place, that statue, had been split open, and his body was gone. He’s been popping up here and there in the Marvel Universe since then, doing odd little things, including holding an Infinity Stone… but it’s all just been tiny things, nothing definitive, nothing to really explain what he’s up to.
That story is the Hunt for Wolverine. It’s been amazing to get to bring a character back after killing him years ago – and staying dead for four years in the Marvel Universe is no mean feat. So, we wanted to do something big to explore what’s been happening with him, and set up tons of stories to come.
The issue out this week is a 40-page one-shot (you get a LOT of story here), with the main thirty-page story “Secrets and Lives” drawn by Dave Marquez, colored by Rachelle Rosenberg and lettered by Joe Sabino. The 10-page backup “Hunter’s Pryde” is drawn by Paulo Siqueira, colored by Walden Wong and lettered by Ruth Redmond.
It tells you how Logan got out of that statue, and answers some other questions, but again, this is a big story and we’re just getting started. From here, we move into four four-issue miniseries that will run across the summer, each with their own genre feel, and all designed to act as pieces of the larger puzzle of Wolverine’s return. I’m only writing one of them, but they’re all very cool and distinct (and satisfying) in their own right. Here’s the list:
ADAMANTIUM AGENDA (w. Tom Taylor; a. R.B. Silva) – a superhero action story starring the New Avengers (a team of heroes including Iron Man, Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, Spider-Man and, once, Wolverine).
MYSTERY IN MADRIPOOR (w. Jim Zub; a. Thony Silas) – sexy spy stuff with an all-female cast set in Madripoor – Kitty Pryde, Storm, Rogue, Psylocke, Domino, and Jubilee. (All ladies who have deep connections to Logan of one sort or another.)
CLAWS OF THE KILLER (w. Mariko Tamaki; a. Butch Guice) – horror! This one stars a cast of folks who hate Wolverine – Sabretooth, Daken and Lady Deathstrike. They are also “hunting” Wolverine, but in more like the “hunt down and kill again” version of the term.
WEAPON LOST (w. Charles Soule; a. Matteo Buffagni) – detective/noir. The lead of this book is Daredevil (I also, ahem, write Daredevil for Marvel), and he recruits a group of smart investigative-types – one of my all-time favorite characters I’ve ever created, the gruff Inhuman detective Frank McGee, and also Misty Knight and Cypher (longtime member of the X-Men). This one’s super fun – and while I’ve seen a little “Daredevil’s a ninja, not a detective” stuff around online already, look. I think Daredevil would be an incredible detective, with his heightened senses and so on. Kicking criminals in Hell’s Kitchen and working as a lawyer and mayor only takes up so many hours in the day. He needs another gig.
Then, these books all lead to something else, something really big, which I’ll be able to talk about soon. I’ve gotten questions about why we would do it like this, why create seventeen issues of material, especially since comics ain’t cheap. Well, you have a choice, as always. You don’t have to buy any of it. But it’s all designed to work sort of like the many Marvel Cinematic Universe movies that led up to Avengers: Infinity War. They’re all fun and cool and self-contained in their own right, and you don’t have to watch any of them to understand Infinity War… but if you do, you’ll get more enjoyment out of the big event movie. Hunt for Wolverine #1 and each of the four minis take a different path and provide different clues to the overall picture of what’s happening with Wolverine. If you read them all, you’ll be ahead of your dumb friends who didn’t read everything, and you’ll have gotten to enjoy some great stories with cool art besides.
In addition to the Wolverine stuff, though, each story also has what I’m calling the “X-Plosions” – a massive moment or beat that’s designed to fuel X-related stories for ages to come. Some of these will be controversial, but as a writer, thinking about the possibilities that come from them… yeah. Don’t miss the X-Plosions.
I’ve worked my ass off on all of this, to be honest – I’m “showrunning” the whole thing to make sure the stories all work consistently with each other and the larger story being told, the reveals hit where they should, we aren’t giving away too much too early, things like that, while also working on the thing that all of this is leading to simultaneously. It’s head-spinning to be doing the beginning, middle and end all at once, but it’s the kind of challenge you always hope you’ll get when you get into this biz. Marvel’s putting a lot of trust in me to pull this off, so please buy them. (If you want.)
Next up… DARTH VADER #15! Art from Giuseppe Camuncoli & Daniele Orlandini, colors by David Curiel and letters by Joe Caramagna.
This is the third installment of the “Burning Seas” arc, set on the water world of Mon Cala, home to Admirals Ackbar and Raddus, and many other aquatic folks too. The planet’s in open revolt against the Empire, and at this relatively nascent stage of Palpatine’s rule, he can’t afford to let that stand. So, he’s sent Grand Moff Tarkin to handle the military side of things, and Darth Vader and his Inquisitors to hunt down the Jedi survivor he believes is advising the Mon Calamari king, Lee-Char. This one opens with one of my favorite sequences I’ve ever scripted and then seen drawn, which is a minor spoiler, but it’s basically Vader vs. Giant Squid at the bottom of the sea. It’s kind of a Jules Verne homage, and almost entirely silent. Cammo & crew killed it, as always.
We just got some pretty great news about the Vader series, which is exciting – in a nutshell, you guys seem to really enjoy this series, and we’re listening.
In other Sith-y releases this week, we have the second collection of the series, “Legacy’s End.” Same creative team as noted above for Vader #15. Here’s the cover:
This collects issues 7-12 of the book, which include the “Legacy’s End” story running through issues 7-10, and “The Rule of Five” which has issues 11-12. I’m very proud of these stories, in part because they were the first Vader tales I was telling that weren’t about the story of him getting his red lightsaber. That adventure opened the series, and it had such a strong hook that it was “easier” in some ways. (Don’t get me wrong, it’s never truly easy.) These issues were where I had to figure out what to do with Vader in other ways, expand the Inquisitor stuff and create stories that were meaningful within the larger Star Wars canon and timeline, and also to me personally (always crucial.)
I hope you enjoy them. If you haven’t checked out my novel THE ORACLE YEAR yet, please head over to www.oracleyear.com for more information and ordering links – the sales are remaining rock-steady three weeks out from release, and reviews have been uniformly stellar, which is just wonderful. It means, among other things, that this isn’t the last novel from me – which is another thing I’ll be able to talk about down the road. That said, if you did read it and like it, or just want to be kind, it’s SO HELPFUL if you give it a high-star rating on GoodReads and/or Amazon. Amazon in particular uses an algorithm that looks at the ratings pretty closely, so if you’re only going to do one, that’s the one. Here are the links:
Next week is all X all the time from me… Astonishing X-Men #11 (my penultimate issue on that title)and Weapon Lost #1 (which kicks off my Hunt for Wolverine mini). See you back here then, and as always, if you read anything from me this week, let me know what you think on Twitter, or send me a note via the contact page here!