Comic Rack: Trinity War Revealed, Marvelman Coming Soon, & Villains Take Over DC in September!

Welcome back to Comic Rack! We take a look at a few comic stories making their way around the interwebs this week!

[toggle_box title=”DC’s Trinity War Revealed As Justice League Event” width=”Width of toggle box”] DC’s newest event that has been teased for a few months now has been revealed, and the Trinity most have been wondering about will be the various teams to carry the Justice League brand. The event will see the Justice league, justice League Dark, and the Justice League of America cross paths in what is sure to be a climactic story. Newsarama reports:

DC’s “signature supergroups enter into a combustible situation when a hero’s death causes sparks to fly,” reports the national newspaper.

Justice League of AmericaJustice League, and Justice League Dark will play host to the summer event from DC instead of a traditional separate miniseries. Geoff Johns will write the Justice League chapters alone, Jeff Lemire joins as co-writer for Justice League of America, and Lemire writes the Justice League Dark chapters on his own. Ivan Reis and Joe Prado, Doug Mahnke, and Mikel Janin are the series artists, respectively.

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“We really want to find and carve out the Justice League corner of the DC Universe,” Johns told USA Today. “It is a universe all itself with these three teams, and it feels big enough to be worthy of a Justice League story.”

The story, when first announced, was billed as the first major universe-wide crossover in the DC Universe since the reboot in September 2011 reset all series to new first issues, and is now firmly focused on the three Justice League teams — though they do reach into most corners of the DCU. Johns is excited for many of these individual team members — and the full team lineups — to meet for the first time in the series, but promises that the big-fisted fights will be balanced by personal drama, calling the story an “action mystery.”

Comic Rack

And yes, that other trinity, the Trinity of Sin, will play a part in the story, with The Question finally joining Pandora and Phantom Stranger in a feature role. Pandora and her box, as well as how both are used, will be a focal point for the story.

“She’s an enigma, completely,” Johns said. “In a lot of ways, she’s been a pawn for most of her existence. She was tricked into using the box and she’s being tricked into doing something now, in a way. The Justice League, that becomes another part of it.”

Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, Constantine, Zatanna, Shazam, Atom, Element Woman, Frankenstein, and more were all specifically called out in the announcement, implying large roles for each. Shazam has “no allegiance to anybody” while Frankenstein is Lemire’s “favorite” and his interactions are specifically “a lot of fun.”

DC’s Trinity War starts in July.[/toggle_box]

[toggle_box title=”New Series ‘Avengers A.I.’ Spins Out of Age of Ultron” width=”Width of toggle box”]With such a large event like Age of Ultron running through the Marvel U. there are bound to be spin off series that draw on some of the buzz of the event. With the recent announcement of Avengers A.I., we see a brand new team book that is different from anything we’ve seen before. Newsarama reports:

Avengers A.I. (sharing part of Mark Waid’s Age of Ultron #10A.I. one-shot’s title) is an ongoing series debuting in July, written by Sam Humphries and illustrated by Andre Lima Araujo, reports USA Today.

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According to USA Today, the aftermath of Age of Ultron has some unintended consequences for the Marvel Universe – “the creation and mushrooming of artificial intelligences who can themselves create subsequent A.I.s with increasing complexity and power without mankind’s assistance.”

The series is reportedly about “the future coming too far and technology evolving faster, and the philosophical conundrum about man vs. machine.”

“It’s a Pandora’s Box situation – once you fire that bullet out of the gun, you can never put it back,” Humphries told the daily national newspaper. “The Marvel Universe within the blink of an eye is being colonized by A.I.s who may or may not have positive feelings about the way humanity has been treating them for the past 100 years.”

However, he added, “the brave new world of A.I. contains some hostile elements, but it is not a monolithic, anti-human threat. It is a thriving society with many divergent points of view — some who very much wish to live in peace with humanity. It is not a black-and-white situation.”

The group includes Pym, The Vision, Ultron’s son Victor Mancha, that aforementioned Doombot [check the link for more on him], and a new character Alexis and Monica Chang, an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Age of Ultron is still blowing minds, so we’ll know more once that finishes tearing apart the Marvel U.[/toggle_box]

[toggle_box title=”DC Announces Villain Month” width=”Width of toggle box”]DC has had a few specialty months lately with both Zero month and the quickly abandoned WTF month. WTF referenced the surprise gatefold covers out this month that reveal a key story point to the various issues. Zero month took us back to a certain point of the various characters origins and flushed out the New 52 versions of the characters. Now we’ll see the villains take over the comics in September, as CBR reports:

Comic Rack - DC Villains Month

September marks the end of the second full year of DC Comics’ New 52, and it looks like the publisher once again plans to do something special to mark the event. Similar to September 2012’s zero issue month across the publisher’s line, Collected Editions reports the rumor that DC plans to do a collection of Villain-centric new #1 issues across the New 52 come September. The information comes from a omnibus listing in the newest DC Comics trade catalog, found below.

[box_dark]DC New 52 Villains Omnibus

In September 2013, evil took over, as every title in the DC Universe published special new #1s featuring the villains of the DC Universe, collected here in a massive hardcover edition.

A giant-size, hardcover omnibus collection of the special “villains issues” published line-wide in September 2013, spotlighting the greatest villains of the DCU.[/box_dark]

Collected Editions further states that there will be 56 issues, instead of DC’s normal magic number of 52. The publisher did something similar for select titles in January 2009 with its “Faces of Evil” promotion during “Final Crisis,” which hoped to answer the question, “What happens when evil wins?” 19 of DC’s regularly published titles featured a villain on the cover, but the issues kept their individual numbering. In addition, there were four one-shot “Faces of Evil” issues, which each dealt with a single villain.

Giving the villains a month to shine with their own #1’s seems like a great idea, and will more than likely bring in some geek dollars.[/toggle_box]

[toggle_box title=”Axel Alonso Talks Marvelman, Infinity, and More” width=”Width of toggle box”]Fans have been waiting for a while to see what Marvel was going to do with Marvelman/Miracleman since the legal battle wrapped a few years ago. Of course, wrapped up means continually bogged down by legal issues we won’t get into here. However, with the recent announcement that Angela )another character whose legal battle finally ended) will be appearing at the end of Age of Ultron, many are wondering what will be next. Marvel  EIC Axel Alonso spoke with Newsarama about that very topic, and a few others:

Comic Rack - MarvelmanNewsarama: Axel, not sure how much you can speak to this right now, but given the recent Angela news, fans are naturally wondering about another character in a seemingly similar situation, Marvelman — is there any progress involving that character?

Axel Alonso: There has been progress. Considerable progress. And we’ll be making an announcement soon.

I’m a huge fan of Marvelman. I’m very excited about seeing him being published by Marvel.

Nrama: Something seemingly coming up in the nearer future isInfinity, and more details on that have recently been released. It’s been said for a long time now that the cosmic corner of the Marvel Universe will become better integrated with the rest of the MU, and become a bigger deal in general. We’ve already seen the high-profile launches of Nova and Guardians of the Galaxy, but is this the truest realization yet of that goal?

Alonso: Absolutely. You won’t find a Marvel event that narrows the gap between Marvel’s cosmic heroes and earthbound heroes more than Infinity. Everyone’s fighting side by side for the same stakes.

It’s all part of a slowly unfolding plan. When we did Avengers vs. X-Men, our goal was to do an event that was equally relevant to readers of Avengers and readers of X-Men, which aren’t always the same audience, that set up the launching pad for an expanded Marvel Universe.  The way that readers have responded to Guardians of the Galaxy — which was the #1 selling book this month — and Nova shows that Marvel fans are down with the program.  And Infinity will continue to hammer home the message that it’s called the Marvel “Universe” for a reason. A long time ago, I promised that Nova and the Guardians would be as relevant to the Marvel U as the Avengers and Spider-Man, and I wasn’t lying. Infinity will do the same for Thanos and the Inhumans.

Comic Rack - ThanosNrama: You mentioned at CBR recently that Marvel NOW! Wave 2 is coming soon. Since then we’ve seen some new series announcements, but it’s not clear what’s exactly constitutes Wave 2. So, readers should expect more on that soon?

Alonso: Oh yeah. We have plenty more planned. Marvel NOW! Wave 2 will not only provide new ongoing series featuring some of your favorite characters, but also great jumping-on points for series in progress. We’re very happy with the performance of our relaunch, and we want to make sure that fans who’ve missed, say, Jonathan’s Avengers, Brian’s All-New X-Men or Jason’s Thor: God of Thunder, have a great jumping-on point in that window of time.

I’ll add that the Marvel NOW! trades are selling through the roof, which I think is a reflection of the quality of those books, and the efforts of our writers and artists, who really brought their A-game.

So we vaguely know now that a lot of stuff is coming in the future of Marvel NOW!, which we kind of already knew. Thanks, Axel. [/toggle_box]

That’s it for this week! We’ll see you next time with more comic news.

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