Marvel Announces SEASON ONE Line of Original Graphic Novels

Taking a page (give or take a few hundred) from DC's Earth One line (whose Superman: Earth One was a breakout success), Marvel has announced a line of original graphic novels featuring some of their most popular characters and Daredevil. They're calling it Season One.

Though Marvel claims to have sought out younger talent with fresh takes on the characters, you'll recognize a few promising names. 

It all starts in February with Fantastic Four: Season One by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and David Marquez. 

In March, Dennis Hopeless and Jamie McKelvie offer up X-Men: Season One

Antony Johnston and Wellinton Alves take on Daredevil: Season One in April. 

Finally in May, Cullen Bunn and Neil Edwards round out the first batch with Spider-Man: Season One.

We have few details as to page count or content of these stories, but editors stress that these are not part of a new universe similar to the Ultimate line. Though origin stories will be touched upon, this isn't about new beginnings either. Just accessibility. 

Says Tom Brevoort of the big continuity question: 

"Everything you know about them, everything that's existed for the last 50 years still exists and is still there. These are individually new stories, even though they've got bits and pieces of old and formative origin stuff in and around them, as well."

Should the first round of Season One titles fair well, more teams and characters will get the treatment in the months to follow. 

For more details on the Season One OGN's and an extensive unlettered preview of Fantastic Four: Season One and sketches from its X-Men counterpart, head over to USA Today

UPDATE

Jamie McKelvie posted on his Tumblr with the new along with a character sketch from the X-Men of none other than Cyclops (sans moustache)

Comments

  1. hmm intresting

  2. Ear..I mean season One, eh? good idea. I bet DC wishes they’d thought of it first. Seriously though, I’m happy to see this

  3. I don’t know anything about Dennis Hopeless (sounds familiar though), but McKelvie drawing X-Men has my money!

  4. Can’t blame them for aping a successful model, and some of these line-ups look pretty awesome.

  5. I’m interested…the idea of buying an original story as a finished package is very appealing. I really hope the writers take advantage of this longer format and come up with something interesting.

  6. Jeff Reid (@JeffRReid) says:

    I find it odd that the USA Today piece mentions that this line of OGNs is Marvel’s first. Marvel did a bunch of these in the ’80s. Two of them (Death of Captain Marvel and X-Men: God Loves, Man Kills) are still referenced today.

    Anyway, I’m happy to support OGNs from the Big Two. Bound collections are the format I prefer to read comics in, so I’ll probably be picking up the FF title in support. I’d love to hear what the cost is, but I guess Marvel will wait until these are actually solicited to give more details.

  7. @JeffR  —yeah price is a big issue…i hope they don’t overprice these as Marvel has sometimes done for Hardcovers.

  8. McKelvie on X-Men piques my intrest. Will be buying that for sure.

  9. Can’t pass up on McKelvie on X-Men.  I’m not familiar with Hopeless, but the name doesn’t give good vibes.  Hopefully these are twenty bucks or cheaper.

  10. Hopefully they sell as well as the DC Superman book, it’ll be nice if they release more stuff like this.

  11. Marvel really seems to love Roberto Agurrie-Sacasa on FF. 😉
    Odd mix. Not sure any of this really is up my alley but we’ll see. Interesting to see that one of the Axel Alonso ideas has been this run, as JoeyQ was very vocal in his perception that they weren’t worth doing. 

  12. “Some of their most popular characters and Daredevil.” LMAO! Good one 🙂

  13. Cullen Bunn and Jamie McKelvie are safe bets. However, only existing comic readers will know who they are.

  14. “…some of their most popular characters and Daredevil.”  Thank you Paul, that was delightful.

  15. I’ll be picking up Spider-man and X-men for sure.  FF and DD still bore me senseless.

  16. Dennis Hopeless is the guy who is going to be writing Legion of Monsters, coming this October.

    http://www.bleedingcool.com/2011/07/15/marvel-to-launch-legion-of-monsters-1-in-october/ 

  17. Yaaaaay! I was hoping for more OGNs! So much easier to point and buy OGNs then try and walk newcomers through complex continuity. (That’s with my librarian cap on).

  18. Wanted McKelvie on the “relaunched” Uncanny will Gillen, BUT I will settle for this!  And Cullen Bunn on Spider-Man has me interested as well.

  19. Don’t recognise most of those names, but I’m optimistic. Hopefully they’ll do better than DC (still waiting on that Batman Earth One, guys)

  20. I love this idea, Earth One inspired and then some. I love the simplistic clean Cassaday like pencils on that Cyclops above and hope thats how they look in X-Men Season One, on it!

  21. Where are all the people that were harping on about how Marvel doesn’t have to pay attention to what DC does because they’re number one in the marketplace now?

  22. “Seriously guys we really need to think of something new here and not steal from DC.”

    “How about we do a line of ‘Season One OGNs? It’s like ‘Earth One but we replace Earth with Season!”

    “……..*sigh*”

    Seriously though this doesn’t interested me at all, especially with the boring mix of talent involved. 

  23. I highly doubt I’ll pick these up. Not that I think it’s necessarily a bad idea or that the stories will be bad, I just hate the idea that editors and creators think they have to stress “accessibility” to reach a broad audience. How about you just stress “telling good stories”? People are smart. They can figure things out. “Astonishing X-Men” and “Green Lantern: Rebirth” were some of the first stories I read. They were complicated as hell. And they were awesome.

  24. Let’s be honest here, this is getting said.

    Marvel is either:

    A) Copying an idea DC has to the T.
    or
    B) Trying to make fun of a company because they couldn’t think of it first. (In this case putting ‘Still #?’ jokes on variant covers)

    I know I tend to learn towards DC at times on this site but at this point I have to ask what Marvel is thinking creatively. Either they’re acting like smug assholes to the competition or maybe they are finally running out of ideas after 50+ years as a company. (I’m talking about once the company called itself Marvel) Is DC a perfect company? Hell no. Trust me, I have a very good feeling this ‘Soft Reboot’ of the entire line is going to fail. But if this is the best idea that Marvel has to offer (or give us 2 more unnessicary Spider-Man books) then maybe they should get Stan Lee back cause clearly the ‘Architects’ and brilliant minds of Marvel today aren’t getting it done.

  25. @TheNextChampion – (place eye rolling emoticon here)

    Sure, doing this as OGN’s is taking a page from the Superman OGN, seeing as how it worked. Such is comics, and always has been. Oh no, how terrible. It’s not like Marvel hasn’t already done a series like X-Men: First Class. And I got no idea what you’re talking about in terms of a ‘soft reboot’. These are OGN stories. Nothing different than DC doing “Year One” miniseries. They are side stories being to try and reach new audiences. It is as simple as that. You’re taking a headline about some little retelling OGN’s and turning it into some giant conspiracy. Chill dude.

  26. Drop the ‘season one’ crap and you much have something. I hate this ‘season’ crap in comics. We don’t have ‘seasons’ we have volumes. Not everything should follow television…you know, the medium who’s recent claim to fame what the collective stupidity called Jersey Shore?
     

  27. I stopped reading once I read the words “Fantastic Four” and “Roberto Aguire-Sacasa”.

    Sold, sight unseen. I’ve read his Marvel Knights 4 and Wolf At The Door remains as one of the best Fantastic Four stories that I’ve read. 

  28. @Zarathos81  …and Game of Thrones and dozens of other artfully produced and smartly written programs?

  29. I’ll think I buy the X-men one. I only have the Morrison X-men, which I like. I wanted  to buy more, but other runs seem to contuinity-heavy

  30. Maybe it’s because it’s early right now, but I can’t help but be a bit annoyed by the fact that they even have to address continuity with this series.  I mean, why can’t it be completely separate from anything else?  Isn’t that the point of accessibility?  If these are just retelling an origin for characters that we’ve read a bajillion times, what’s our incentive to purchase?  I hope they try to take a fresh, different approach to some of these characters.  That was one of the draws of Superman: Earth One, no?

    I like to see the push for newer readers.  Accessibility never hurt anything.  Unlike “Earth One” it looks like we’ll see multiple titles in the line. 

  31. @TheNextChampion  I’m glad someone else recognized that dickmove (still #? “jokes”) on the part of Marvel in the new Previews catalog. 

  32. @Zarathos81  “Season” has meanings outside of TV. Literal ones like fall, winter, etc., or figurative ones like the holiday season, [insert food] season, sports seasons. In order for these heroes to become seasoned veterans, they must have a first season, yes?

    anyway, just as I saw no way DC’s “line” would draw in the elusive new reader, I don’t see it here either. McKelvie on an X-Men project is a good thing for sure.

    anyone else notice that these are the ones they don’t have the film rights to? not sure what that means, but it’s there. 

  33. EVERYONE PAY ATTENTION TO @CEDRIC! That is seriously one hundred percent what Marvel is hoping for here.

    @TheNextChampion – Hi, welcome to comics.

    If Marvel can pull this off, then they’ve one-upped DC in a big way. Maybe DC will learn to stop spearheading major initiatives with JMS (in light of the reboot, I guess they have). And I like the name “Season One”. It really makes it seem like this is a good starting point, as opposed to Earth One, which is a reference to DC’s convoluted and continuity-laden multiverse.

  34. @ABirdseysView  Good point about the film rights, didn’t notice that. Wether or not this draws in elusive new readers depends on advertising. They gotta let people besides us know about this.

  35. one MAJOR disadvantage these books will have that Superman Earth One did not have to deal with…no more Borders. 700+ stores that won’t be putting these books on display for the mass market/non comic shop crowd, which is the target market right? Thats a mega big deal.

  36. Good point, @wallythegreenmonster. And it certainly makes DC’s digital move all the more poignant.

  37. @Smasher  –i was listening to NPR last night talking about Borders, and they were saying the death of the Big Box store, might bring the return of the independent, niche bookshop. Crazy times. Our world is getting bigger and smaller at the same time. 

  38. I can’t tell if the line “…some of their most popular characters and Daredevil.” is supposed to be a joke or not… haha

    This is a cool idea though. Might get me to actually read some Marvel books.  

  39. not for me, thanks.

  40. @wallythegreenmonster  — That sounds like feel good propoganda for all the olds who donate to NPR 🙂

    But seriously, if the independent book store comes back in a medium-sized way it’ll have to somehow incorporate the digital book world as well. For instance:

    o   Comission sales from Amazon, B&N for digital copies of books purchased at local bookstores
    o  
    Have Amazon, B&N online customers use their local book stores as an optional delivery location; incentivize this option by offering book stores exclusive “special editions” of the books.

  41. @Smasher  –whats interesting is i was listening to a word balloon yesterday as well with Kelly Sue Deconnick and she was talking about comic shops that she’s been to that are thriving..the ones that incorporate book clubs, author/creator events, super friendly and proactive staff…really foster community and make it a destination. All of the successful indie (non comic) bookshops that i’ve been to in the past few years have been very similar to that style. I think there is something in that. Big Box stores are as cold and impersonal as Amazon at times. 

    and to your point about Digital, they mentioned how Barnes and Noble is investing HEAVILY in digital options and things in store and that is their long term survival strategy. 

    all fascinating.  

  42. This might be good.

  43. @wallythegreenmonster

    So true. So fascinating. There were shops out there that lived & died solely on their Wednesday sales. It’s just not sustainable.

  44. @wallythegreenmonster  I’ll wager she neglects to mention most of those stores are either in unique situations or bolster their income with warghammer parties and beyblade tournaments (or whatever garish pokemon clone is popular right now)

  45. @TheNextChampion  Lol you DC fanboys sure come out in droves. Still stinging over the poor reception of Green lantern?
    Don’t worry I am sure the reboot will fix all of DC’s problems *snort*.

  46. @syngar98  –she didn’t mention that, but she did say that these shops were more destination and hang out spot that just an LCS. I’ve seen similar. Diversification is always good in any business. 

  47. @wallythegreenmonster  Well thats exactly my point. I find that comics sales in so-called comic book stores are relegated to ancillary income. Between graphic novel websites, digital sales and piracy, comic books stores have become merely popular young male culture stores instead.

  48. @syngar98  —well i suppose you could look at it that way. Perhaps the evolution to a pop culture store is just the future of the retail side of things. I don’t see a problem with that. My way of seeing it is if you’re entire revenue stream is tied to 90% of your business coming in on Wednesday, then thats just a poor business model…unless you are only open (and pay rent) for one day a week. Diversity is pretty essential for retail business. 

  49. @wallythegreenmonster  Oh i don;t either, but I feel that it’s disengenuous of her (or anyone) to claim success without giving accurate reasons for it.
    A hooker that also sells avon, shouldn’t go around saying avon is why her bills are paid.