During this afternoon's Cup O' Joe panel at San Francisco's WonderCon, Marvel announced a number of compelling projects.
Chief among them? Warren Ellis' return to the larger Marvel U, specifically with Secret Avengers. We knew Nick Spencer's tenure on the book was only a temporary tour of duty, but now we know who'll be running the platoon for issue #16 and beyond. Ellis joins the book in August, and it looks like each issue is a one-and-done deal, ideal for new readers, light weeks, and impulse purchases.
And the first artist he'll be working with? Jamie McKelvie, who'll be lending his considerable talents to Secret Avengers #16. It's just for a single issue, but in those pages we are treated not only to McKelvie's take on Beast, Steve Rogers, Black Widow, and Moon Knight, but also on a plummeting automobile! How's about a looky-loo?
"Beginning in Secret Avengers #16, superstar Warren Ellis takes the reins of the special ops team Steve Rogers assembled for a series of hypercompressed single-issue adventures, each a balls-out action film in 22 pages, as they covertly confront and eliminate those threats to life and liberty growing in the shadowy corners of the world, far from the eyes of men."
This next one is a little spoilery for Fear Itself, but what are you gonna do? Hulk vs. Dracula is a three part slobberknocker pitting the newly Worthied Hulk against the vampire hordes of the Marvel U. This one is written by blood sportsman Victor Gischler and an iFanboy artist -to-watch Ryan Stegman. Issue #1 hits this September.
Here's a really striking cover from, if I'm not mistaken, Gabriele Dell'Otto:
"Hulk is now one of the villainous Worthy so it’s time for him to smash his way through the Marvel Universe, but only one hero can stand in his way and it’s…Dracula?!
This is where Death of Dracula, Tomb of Dracula Presents: Throne of Blood and X-Men have all been leading, as Dracula and the mysterious Raizo (Throne of Blood) must put aside their millennia old feud to stop the Hulk from annihilating the entire vampire race! Because if they can’t stop Hulk, no one can! Acclaimed creators Victor Gischler and Ryan Stegman bring you one of the most important battles in FEAR ITSELF…and no one walks away unscathed."
Fans of the critically acclaimed Magneto: Testament will be pleased to learn that Greg Pak is returning to familiar themes and environs for a new five-part limited series centered on the Red Skull. The origin story boasts a tremendous art team, with Secret Warriors artist Mirko Colak on interiors and David Aja providing some stunning covers.
"Witness the chilling creation of Marvel’s greatest monster, and liberty’s greatest enemy. As Berlin descends into chaos and ruin, sinister forces are on the rise…and the men who will form the Nazi Party ascend to power. Against this tragic backdrop of history, a boy comes of age…Johann Schmidt. Orphan, thug, urchin – Johann has nothing…and how far he would go for power will change the world…"
The summer's looking gorgeous alright.