Remake & Reboot: The ANT-MAN Series

He’s missing from the Avengers movie, and he’s been pulled from the front lines in comics with a teaching role in Avengers Academy and a strict desk job in Secret Avengers. That’s a long way from his roots as founding member of the team (even before Captain America joined up). Maybe it’s partly because of his nontraditional power set, or possibly its the pent-up blame from the comic stories showing Pym physically abusing his then-wife the Wasp, Janet Van Dyne. No matter what the case, Henry Pym is still a character full of potential that needs to be tapped into.

Hurdling over those obstacles and charting a new way forward, in this edition of Remake & Reboot we speculate on how Ant-Man could be revitalized and who should be the ones doing it.

The Concept:

At the core of Henry Pym’s character, he’s a super science kind of guy who wants to parlay that into being a superhero. In many ways he’s like Reed Richards, but while Richards has become a sort of family man Pym has never been able to put down roots. His varied costumes and secret identities over the years have conveyed the gist of an inferiority complex in Pym, with him constantly trying to live up to the expectations he has for himself and pushing himself, sometimes recklessly, into achievement. While he’ll be eternally known for two great achievements — co-founding the Avengers and creating Pym particles, he’ll also be remembered for two momentous, yet totally revolting events — the creation of Ultron and his abuse of the Wasp. You could say he’s got the seeds of a mad scientist in him, with the awareness of that and constant perseverance to try to avoid that.

In a new Ant-Man series, that bubbling underbelly of the character should be challenged head-on, not unlike the way Tony Stark’s alcoholism is taken in the Iron Man comics of Warren Ellis and Matt Fraction. Mix that with the super science and a bit of super comedy (he talks to ants!), and I think this could be a great melting pot to forge a new way of looking at Henry Pym. Much in the same way Marvel re-invented Tony Stark with Ellis and Adi Granov’s “Extremis” arc and Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting’s Captain America re-launch, Marvel’s little big man (or big little man?) needs new journey to reclaim his position in comics.

The Creators:

The Writer – Warren Ellis:  Ellis is one of comics big thinkers, and also a writer who’s been uniquely capable of re-inventing flagging franchises such as Wildstorm’s Stormwatch, Marvel’s Iron Man as well as Thunderbolts, specifically refashioning Norman Osborn for his eventual rise and fall in “Dark Reign.” He’s deft at science and also at some comedy (as seen in Nextwave), so imagine if the writer brought all that to bear on Henry Pym.  Back in December 2011, Marvel Editor-In-Chief Axel Alonso openly admitted he was working on enlisting the British writer to re-invent ol’ Hank. And while Ellis is said to be taking a break from comics in 2012, he has said that the right project — and the right artist — could bring him back into the fold.


The Artist – Steve Pugh: DC brought veteran comics artist Steve Pugh back in the fold to pick up after Travel Foreman on the successful relaunch of Animal Man, but Pugh is a lot more than people suspect. His Hotwire series for Radical remains one of the most beautiful comic books in the past decade, and he has a track record (and friendship) with Warren Ellis going back to their work on Doom 2099 back in the late 90s. Pugh has real serious artistic chops and having Marvel realize that and give him a book like this could be the makings of a uniquely popular revitalization of one of Marvel’s classic characters.


  1. Warren Ellis always says he doesn’t like doing superhero comics and wants to take a break from them, but he’s jjust so damn good at it (See: Secret Avengers)

  2. I’m terrified of the link to the What’s Wrong With You article up there.

    This is a great creative team, but considering the way that Marvel has utilized Pym over the last few years, I honestly think it’s time to have him go villain. Then set up honest, hard workin’ Scott Lang as Ant-Man to combat his mad designs, and let Eric O’Grady die in a ditch somewhere.

  3. I think they need to nix the Spouse abuse aspect of his character, it makes him infinitely unlikable.

  4. I love Hank Pym. I really think he has the potential to be one of Marvels absolute best characters with the right creativ team behind the book.

  5. Am I the only one that missed the whole spouse abuse between Ant-Man and Wasp? When did that happen?

  6. Warren Ellis has publicly stated he would not work on an Ant-Man series. I believe his exact words were “Ant-Man is bullsh*t!”. However this has not stopped Axel Alonso from pestering Ellis about working on an Ant-Man series. It’s pretty funny the exchange between these two over Ant-Man!

    Personally I’d love to see a Warren Ellis Ant-Man!!

  7. Poor Eric, brainwashed and crazy.

  8. What they should do is let him have a normal relationship (not with a robot, or be a skrull/cat creature love affair), with a women that will help him become less awkward/geeky (he needs his own Invisible Woman, to keep him in check). Sorta like it was back in the 60’s with him and wasp, or like it is in the TV cartoons now a days.

  9. what was the concept for pym in mighty avengers, if there is a sorcerer supreme, in the universe pym was scientist supreme, i would do a tiny titans spin to antman, there’s your remake. do an entire book of a kids perspective of what its like too be too ant like or too giant. he could even hang out with other tiny titans in other universe, have their own club house with the smurfs, the Little’s, thumbelina, tinkerbell, etc.