With one issue released and fans anxiously awaiting the next issue from the Marvel NOW! flagship book, Uncanny Avengers, Marvel Comics hosted a press conference today to begin the hype around Uncanny Avengers #5, coming in Feburary 2013. Uncanny Avengers writer Rick Remender was joined by editor Tom Brevoort to break the important bits of news related to the series:
- Issue #5 features interior art by guest artist Olivier Coipel.
- The issue adds three more characters to the roster: Sunfire, The Wasp and Wonder Man.
With the pertinent bits of news out of the way, Remender and Brevoort helped paint the picture of what fans can expect from Uncanny Avengers with these cast additions and how the entire run is shaping up. In terms of the new team members, Remender outlined the various roles they will play:
- Sunfire – known as a loner and not a “joiner” of super teams, Sunfire is recruited for a very specific mission by Wolverine. Brevoort described this mission as a “samurai” mission. Remender also expanded on Sunfire’s motivation as seeing the call to join the Avengers as something very different than joining the X-Men, which he’s turned down time after time over the years.
- Wonder Man – coming off of the major character development done by Brian Michael Bendis in his Avengers run, Wonder Man will continue his pacifist ways, while leveraging his previous Hollywood experience to help the Uncanny Avengers handle public relations.
- The Wasp – back from dead recently, The Wasp will be helping to not only bankroll the team, which has no formal government support, but also work towards helping the reputation of mutants around the world, or at least trying to.
Remender elaborated on the mission that the Uncanny Avengers will be working towards, bringing together humans and mutants, but of course it’s a mission that doesn’t always go smoothly. Known for long term story planning, Remender revealed that as of now they’ve broken the first 20 issues of the series story-wise. The first story arc, which ends at issue #4, combined with this stand alone issue #5 will really set the stage for what that long term story arc will be–it will reveal what the Red Skull, Kang and Apocalypse are doing and why the Uncanny Avengers will need to stop them.
In talking about the new team members, as well as the team in general, it’s clear that Remender’s dialed in with a reverence that is very familiar post his run on Uncanny X-Force. Bringing that sense of character development and relationship building, while facing an evil threat, Remender commented “These people are becoming a family and they have to face something bigger than the Avengers or the X-Men have ever faced.” Expanding on that, Remender laid out how the backgrounds and origins of each of these characters bring something unique to the table. The challenge of a pacifist Wonder Man is highlighted by his long relationship with Scarlet Witch, which is made more complex by her current rift with Rogue, who has a sketchy history with the Avengers in general, and so on for each character.
Another item of note that came up was the approach with artistic duties. After slight delays in the initial issues, the question of whether an alternating artist would be joining John Cassaday on the book was asked. Tom Brevoort didn’t confirm that there would be, rather saying to stay tuned to future announcements, leaving that open to interpretation. Brevoort did confirm that issue #2 is at the presses and issue #3 and #4 are continuing on schedule.