Greg Pak introduces Marvel Legacy with a return to Planet Hulk!

On October 18, Amadeus Cho makes an unexpected interstellar trip as writer Greg Pak and artist Greg Land head back to a brutal world with INCREDIBLE HULK #709!

Marvel Legacy begins with “Return to Planet Hulk: Part One,” as the young genius goes where another Hulk has gone before—Bruce Banner. But the planet Sakaar has changed since the Doctor visited years ago. And Amadeus finds himself in unfamiliar territory—on the continent of Filia, halfway around the globe from where The Hulk landed before. Thrust into a conflict he didn’t expect, The Totally Awesome Hulk will have to use every ounce of his intellect and power to survive.

We grabbed a few minutes with Greg Pak to see what’s in store for Amadeus on Planet Hulk.

Marvel.com: Amadeus Cho has learned a lot about himself and his Hulk persona recently. How does this new self-awareness influence his experience on Sakaar?

Greg Pak: Amadeus started off as the Hulk a couple years ago with this big, loopy idea that he could be the best Hulk ever; he never saw being the Hulk as a curse. He doesn’t think of himself as a tortured soul like Banner. He figured he’d become the Hulk and show the world how awesome the Hulk could be. But over the last few storylines, Amadeus has come closer and closer to the darkness within himself. To be specific, he’s got a Dark Hulk inside that’s fighting to get out—and he’s terrified of what he’ll become if that happens.

So as this new storyline begins, Amadeus gets pulled into the brutal world of Sakaar at the absolute worst time—when he’s trying to suppress the brutal monster within.

Marvel.com: How does Amadeus find himself on Sakaar?

Greg Pak: The story took place in TOTALLY AWESOME HULK #23, which just hit stands, so I don’t want to spoil it too much. I’ll just say that Amadeus ends up deciding he’s too dangerous for planet Earth in his current state, so he exiles himself to try to figure out what’s going on with this Dark Hulk inside. But then he gets a signal from Sakaar—someone desperately needs help from The Hulk. And he’s still that cocky kid who thinks he’s going to be the best Hulk ever, so he can’t stop himself from responding.

Marvel.com: You’ve said before that we’ll see a different side of Sakaarliterallyin this story. What new friends and foes will Amadeus find in his time there?

Greg Pak: During the original PLANET HULK story, the Hulk fought the evil Red King of Imperia, freed the slaves and gladiators he’d oppressed, and united the different people of the continent in a new alliance. (Whoops! Spoiler alert!)

This time ’round, Amadeus lands on a different continent on Sakaar—the land of Fillia, which had been at war with the Red King. So you’d think the Fillians would be happy that The Hulk took out the Red King…but once The Hulk disappeared, a thousand new murderers arose in the chaos and now Fillia’s a blasted wasteland where a terrible warlord hunts small clans for sport. One of these clans has put out a call for The Hulk—and they’ve gotten Amadeus.

So we’ll meet a stalwart headman, a scrappy insectivore hiver, an eerie priestess, a manic lackey, and a brutal warlord. It’s a big, epic battle-axes-and-blasters sci-fi fantasy, and you’re going to love it.

Marvel.com: Should we expect to see familiar faces from the original PLANET HULK story?

Greg Pak: Since we’re on the other side of the planet, we won’t see exact characters from the original PLANET HULK. But this fits right into all that worldbuilding we did for PLANET HULK, so you’ll see folks from the various species we established during that story. And you’ll see a disturbing perversion of the myths and legends we introduced there too.

You’ll see a Marvel hero you might have wished appeared in the original PLANET HULK. I’ll say no more, but definitely don’t miss issues #711 and #712!

I’d also like to plug the gorgeous work of Greg Land, inker Jay Leisten, and colorist Frank Darmata. They’re taking the original designs and worldbuilding for PLANET HULK and putting their own spin on them in this new part of the world—it’s just gorgeous stuff.

Marvel.com: What has been most exciting about this return to Sakaar?

Greg Pak: I absolutely loved working on PLANET HULK back in the day. It remains one of the greatest experiences I’ve ever had making comics, and I’m thrilled to have a chance to dig back into that world whenever the opportunity presents itself. With this particular story, it’s a kick throwing Amadeus into the mix, because he was famously one of the few heroes crazy enough to side with the Hulk during WORLD WAR HULK. So there’s a bit of a comeuppance here—a chance to see how Amadeus handles the kind of brutal world that the Banner Hulk endured. There’s a lot of delicious and scary stuff to dig in with that kind of set up, and I’m having a blast.

I should also note that if you’re digging this vibe, please do check out the “Planet Hulk” prose novel that hits stores on October 4! I got pulled on board to write it last year, and if you dug the original PLANET HULK, I think you’re going to love the prose novel. We got a chance to dig a lot deeper into all kinds of aspects of the story and try some surprising new things. Check it out!

INCREDIBLE HULK #709, by Greg Pak and artist Greg Land, crash lands on October 18!

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A heroic spin on a classic alien invasion story courtesy of Kirby!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

During the pre-super hero, monster-filled days of the early 60s, Jack Kirby worked with Stan Lee to create an army of aliens and other threats to help fill anthologies like TALES TO ASTONISH, JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY, and TALES OF SUSPENSE. The protagonists of those stories tended to be regular people stumbling into weird situations and, hopefully, coming out on top thanks to good old-fashioned grit and determination.

When the folks in flashy costumes took over, they also began taking on very similar threats in the pages of their own books. However, with 1976’s CAPTAIN AMERICA ANNUAL #3, Kirby brought the two worlds together in a story called “Doom is the Black Star!” The issue kicked off with a farmer named Jim Hendricks blasting a huge purple alien monster away from the Sentinel of Liberty with a sci-fi ray gun.

Once the creature vanished before their eyes, Cap and Jim remembered how the latter contacted the former after he appeared on a local talk show. It took some convincing, but eventually the hero agreed to investigate the strange beings and U.F.O. that landed on Hendricks’ farm.

More surprises came when Hendricks took Cap back to his house where the masked pilot of the ship—dubbed “The Captive”—temporarily resided. After unmasking, The Captive explained that, even though it took him a million years, he found a way to escape from a black hole! Upon doing so, though, agents of the Galactic Empire came to put him back.

Meanwhile, up in space, the ship that sent the initial monster deployed a Combatron to regain their quarry. Fighting like a furious storm, the being unleashed its fury on the two men. Cap attempted to buy time by facing off against the Combatron while Jim searched for alien weapons. Having gained the upper hand, our hero had to leap out of the way of lasers blasting from the ship to erase all evidence of the Combatron and its pod.

Captain America Annual (1971) #3

Captain America Annual (1971) #3

  • Published: January 03, 1976
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: September 17, 2008
  • Writer: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

With an army of Magnoids descending towards Earth, the Sentinel of Liberty remained behind to size them up while Jim and Captive returned to the alien’s ship. Once there, Captive’s true colors started showing through as he rambled about being feared and returning to his full power levels.

Back outside, Cap did his best fighting off a legion of mechanical men. He held his own and even made off with one of their weapons, but quickly ran back to the ship where Captive truly revealed himself. Instead of finding Jim arming himself to take on the invaders, Captain America saw his new comrade almost completely drained of life!

The Captive then revealed his origins as part of an invasive, energy vampire race that had been mostly felled by use of synthetic, non-organic life forms like the Magnoids. Cap withstood Captive’s attempts at draining him of his own life force, which gave the Magnoids enough time to get inside the ship. As the villain began powering-up, the Captain summoned the last of his strength, slung his mighty shield, and knocked Captive unconscious!

The robots then wrapped Captive up in an inorganic material, which kept him still during the super-fast trip to a star called Epsilon Four. Once there, the space cops shot the villain into the sun, which went nova moments later, presumably killing the energy vampire in the process.

The issue closed with Captain America telling his story at an official military hearing, but the complete lack of evidence—aside from Jim’s corpse—led to them sweeping the whole thing under the rug. In the end, even in the face of the government’s stance that full, public knowledge of extra terrestrials would fill the average person with terror, Cap saw hope in a future that would be more open to visits from other worlds.

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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The war of the disenfranchised wages across the Marvel Universe with survival at stake. 

Bred by an alien race to be a warrior caste and possessing alien DNA, the Inhumans exist as humans possessed of incredible and otherworldly powers when exposed to the substance known as Terrigen. Living secretly, for the most part, among their fellow man, the Inhumans forge their own destiny as a separate society. Dig into the history of the Inhumans with these Marvel Unlimited comics in preparation for “Marvel’s Inhumans” heading to  ABC on September 29!  

Even when they’re not actively getting involved in major situations, the Inhumans seem to find themselves smack-dab in the middle of conflict! In this case, we’re talking about a major problem with the mutant community that actually started in THE DEATH OF X by Jeff Lemire, Charles Soule and Aaron Kuder.

Set in the eight month gap between the end of SECRET WARS and the ALL NEW, ALL DIFFERENT launch, Cyclops and his band of militant mutants discovered the Terrigen Mist that had been floating around the world proved fatal to mutants, including Jamie Madrox who died on Genosha when the cloud passed over. 

Death of X (2016) #1

Death of X (2016) #1

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Enraged at the prospect of more mutant deaths, Cyclops and Emma Frost alerted the world to the danger posed by the mists and then set out to destroy both of them. It worked with one of them, but a major confrontation took place that lead to the death of Cyclops at the mouth of Black Bolt. 

Death of X (2016) #3

Death of X (2016) #3

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Well, sort of. As we learned, Cyclops actually died from exposure to the mist on Genosha and Frost used his image and her powers to make it seem like he still fought the good fight, even though he actually died very early in the series. Unfortunately, driven a bit mad by her lover’s death, Frost decided that Black Bolt actually killed Scott and demanded revenge.

All of this fed right into INHUMANS VS. X-MEN, which saw the mutants and Inhumans at peace while Hank McCoy worked on a solution to the problem with Iso by his side. As it happened, though, Beast soon realized that the cloud would burst, sending the contents all over the planet which would make it uninhabitable by most mutants. 

Inhumans vs. X-Men (2016)

Inhumans vs. X-Men (2016)

What is Marvel Unlimited?

While McCoy had been working on a scientific solution, Emma had been working on a more tactical one with the likes of Magneto, his team of X-Men, Storm, Dazzler, alternate reality Jean Grey and Fantomex to take out primary Inhuman targets like Black Bolt, Karnak, Lockjaw and the rest. However, they didn’t know much about the NuHumans who not only beat Old Man Logan but also destroyed Forge’s invention for saving the day.  

Inhumans vs. X-Men (2016) #1

Inhumans vs. X-Men (2016) #1

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Meanwhile, the captive Inhumans in Limbo worked together to free themselves and then move on to the school. Meanwhile, Inhuman Mosaic infiltrated the X-Men’s earthly stronghold and took over Magneto’s body. Once inside, he also got a look at all of the X-Men’s plans up to that point, including where they kept Black Bolt captive before being cast out. 

Inhumans vs. X-Men (2016) #4

Inhumans vs. X-Men (2016) #4

What is Marvel Unlimited?

With attacks on all sides, a major standoff took place in Limbo as Havok stood next to the chamber holding Black Bolt right in front of Medusa. Cylcops’ brother initially threatened to kill the former Inhuman king, but soon stepped aside, acknowledging that this really boiled down to a plan between Emma and Scott.

Between that and Karnak’s own escape alongside Lockjaw, the Inhumans found themselves back in the fight. However, when finally appraised of the situation regarding the cloud’s impending destruction and the adverse effects on mutants, Medusa used the Terrigen Eater to kill the cloud.

However, still driven mad by the loss of Cyclops, Emma Frost brought out a batch of Inhuman-hunting Sentinels with Magneto still backing her play, but only because of Frost’s mind manipulations. Once he realized all this, he switched sides and essentially fought alongside Medusa and Black Bolt to take Frost down.

Ultimately, they succeeded in destroying the cloud, but the relations between mutant and Inhuman may never be repaired! 

Inhumans vs. X-Men (2016) #6

Inhumans vs. X-Men (2016) #6

What is Marvel Unlimited?

THE INHUMAN CONDITION

The Inhumans saw themselves facing a new world order after the events of IVX. INHUMANS PRIME set the stage for the franchise moving forward, launching into books like ROYALS, BLACK BOLT and SECRET WARRIORS. The first would find most of the Royal Family taking off into space to discover their heritage while the second found their leader somewhat unfairly imprisoned and the final featured a group fighting against Hydra-Cap’s Secret Empire!

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Ulik, MODOK and the future Adam Warlock were all part of another great year for the King.

In celebration of Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday, we’re reviewing the man’s legendary creations with a year-by-year examination of his unparalleled career at Marvel Comics. Read on and witness the work that made him comic book royalty.

By 1967, Marvel editor Stan Lee knew exactly where to use his top artist, Jack Kirby. Together, “The Man” and “The King” whittled Jack’s output down to two main titles that year, with two main side-projects just to make things interesting. One might say it became a true “Summer of Love” between the Marvel creators and their fans at that time.

Stan and Jack continued to infuse FANTASTIC FOUR with way-out wonders and swingin’ splendors in ’67. They kicked off the year with a multi-issue tussle between the FF and Doctor Doom, and then wasted no time tossing them into a battle with the Negative Zone’s Blastaar in FANTASTIC FOUR #62, and the alien Kree Accuser named Ronin—another stand-out Kirby design—in FANTASTIC FOUR #65.

Though the fans might’ve been unaware of the history-making events occurring in FANTASTIC FOUR #67, Stan and Jack introduced another great concept in that issue’s “Him.” Jack’s visuals on the golden-skinned godling seemed a bit subdued and minimalistic, perhaps, but the character continued on to transform into Adam Warlock a few years later, one of Marvel’s most enigmatic yet engaging stars.

In the pages of THOR, Jack’s other blockbuster assignment, the Thunder God met his physical equal in Ulik the Troll in THOR #137, Kang and his Growing Man in THOR #140, and the Kirby tour-de-force of the Super-Skrull in THOR #142. Thor himself suffered under an almost-complete loss of his Asgardian powers in THOR #145, allowing Jack the opportunity to portray the majesty and grandeur of the character in an Earth-bound, civilian-dressed form.

After a break from Captain America’s adventures in TALES OF SUSPENSE, Jack returned to the strip along with Stan in TALES OF SUSPENSE #92 to kick off a storyline that illustrated the great depth of feeling from Cap for Agent-13, one of Nick Fury’s valued S.H.I.E.L.D. agents. After that, Cap met MODOK, surely the most unique Jack Kirby-designed character of the entire year, in TALES OF SUSPENSE #94, and temporarily retired to try and live a “normal life” in TALES OF SUSPENSE #95.

Apart form all the danger and drama delineated by Jack in 1967, he also poked some fun at himself and the rest of the Marvel pantheon through Stan’s latest brainchild, NOT BRAND ECHH, a comedy-parody mag. Utilizing Jack sparingly, but effectively, Stan included his star artist on the introduction of the Silver Burper in NOT BRAND ECHH #1, Sore, Son of Shmodin in NOT BRAND ECHH #3, and the ever-lovin’ origin of none other than Forbush-Man in NOT BRAND ECHH #5. What a way to go-go!

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more on Jack Kirby and join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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Marvel Legacy ushers in a terrible new era for the Merc with a Mouth!

Wade Wilson faced the music in DEADPOOL #36.

The Regenerating Degenerate’s choices during Secret Empire have come back to haunt him…and now he’s at the mercy of Stryfe and on the run from everything he once held dear.

The turning tides in DP’s life herald a new period in his story—and on October 11, Marvel Legacy’s DESPICABLE DEADPOOL #287 marks the start of the chapter.

Written by Gerry Duggan with art by Scott Koblish, Stryfe seeks payment for services rendered. It’s a life for a life—Deadpool owes him four—and the first name on the mutant clone’s list won’t surprise anyone: Cable.

Now Wade, having recently reached higher highs than ever before, hits rock bottom as he’s forced to kill his way out—or face the deadly consequences. Notes Duggan, “He’s putting his head down and just doing what he owes in order to get out of this. He’s not really looking to be very clever at this moment.” The grim circumstances have forced the Merc with a Mouth to recede to just a Merc.

When the thought of reneging on his debt crosses Wade’s mind, he receives an immediate rebuke—if he doesn’t hold up his end of the bargain, the Preston family, and maybe his daughter Ellie, will pay the price. Outsmarting an evil time traveler has to be even harder than it sounds, especially on your own; “There really is no one left that will trust him. He used to be a member of an Avenger squad and unfortunately that’s over. His marriage is over. A lot of his friendships are done,” explains Gerry.

So, has Wade Wilson completely resigned himself to this bleak fate? Gerry doesn’t seem so sure: “Even though Wade seems like he’s still doing terrible things—and he is—he’s still doing honorable things, so that still acts as his motivation.”

Duggan continues, “We spent a lot of years building him up and we’re destroying him in quick time. We’ll see what he has left after we strip everything away, it will be interesting to see what survives of the character after this.”

DESPICABLE DEADPOOL #287, written by Gerry Duggan with art by Scott Koblish, hits on October 11!

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The Black Bolt artist taps into a well of ‘Kirby Konfidence’!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us this month to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

Christian Ward learned something very important after discovering Jack Kirby’s work, something he coins below as “Kirby Konfidence!” He’s used it to help compose everything from covers and guest spots on ULTIMATES to interiors on BLACK BOLT.

As the cover and regular interior artist on BLACK BOLT, Ward gets how beautifully “The King” put together this character who currently finds himself trying to escape from a planet size prison in the series written by Saladin Ahmed.

We talked with Ward about coming to Kirby a little later in life, taking inspiration from his confidence, and the joys of drawing Galactus lounging!

Marvel.com: How did you first come to know Jack Kirby’s work and how did it hit you at the time?

Christian Ward: As a kid of the 80s in the [United Kingdom], I always associated his work with “old comics” and mostly ignored it. It wasn’t until much later in my comic book maturity that I developed an appreciation for him. I thought I’d enjoy comics less once I became a full time artist but if anything it makes you enjoy and appreciate them even more and looking back at Kirby you realize just how amazing he is.

Marvel.com: You do a lot of dynamic cover work, something that Kirby is also known for. Do you think you learned any tricks for good compositions from him?

Christian Ward: Thanks very much. I think Kirby’s work spellbinds through its confidence. Alongside the sheer energy of his drawing Kirby often combines abstract shapes alongside his muscular characters which creates a tension which gives the work its vibrancy. This is often seen although not exclusively in the way Kirby presents technology, machinery, and costumes. All feature an array of different overlaying and contrasting shapes. Just for the love it. Some of it almost looks like automatic drawing.

So it’s less about learning tricks and more about having Kirby’s confidence—“Kirby Konfidence”?—to go for it. You hear stories of how fast Kirby was in his “dungeon” and his work smacks of someone who just trusts his instincts and goes for it. A kind of deadline-induced freeform drawing. So mostly, I just try and go for it. His work definitely gives me confidence to go more abstract sometimes. Like Kirby I love bold shapes and I’ve just got to try and have Kirby Konfidence.

Marvel.com: In ULTIMATES #6, you drew a story that added new layers to Galactus. How was it contributing something like that to one of Stan Lee and Jack’s most enduring characters?

Christian Ward: [That] was such a fun issue to draw. Best scene? Galactus sitting in an armchair! I always loved Galactus so it was surreal to be drawing him, especially as that was my single issue debut.

There’s not a day working on a Marvel book that you don’t ponder the greats that came before you but if I’d stopped to think too much about what I’m doing I think I’d be crippled with stage fright. I was lucky with ULTIMATES that [writer] Al Ewing had written me an incredible script to work from. So when I have a hobby or crisis of confidence I just focus on the page I’m working on. Let my writer guide me. “Draw Galactus sitting in an armchair.” Got it! The comic book making equivalent of not looking down.

Marvel.com: You’ve done a number of covers and interiors for various characters either co-created by Jack or based on his work. Do you look back at his origins for inspiration?

Christian Ward: Always! I think it’s important as an artist to find your own voice, even when working with existing characters, but it’s crucial that you respect what came before. I’ve tried to put Easter Eggs into each issue of BLACK BOLT as a tip of the hat to not only Kirby but other great artists who have told Bolt’s story before us.

Marvel.com: With BLACK BOLT, you and Saladin Ahmed get to put the book’s star through a variety of challenges he’s never experienced before. How does it feel continuing the Inhuman’s legacy?

Christian Ward: It’s hard to know what to say other than it’s a huge, planet-splitting honor. When I was first offered BLACK BOLT, I jumped at the chance and Saladin’s amazing scripts have made what should have been a monumental undertaking an absolute joy.

I think it’s the fact that Saladin has had this fresh approach that makes the book work. We’re not retreading ground that the Silent King has walked before. Even as a creator on the book each script in my inbox has surprised me. It makes me giddy to think we contributed to part of Black Bolt’s history going forward and [then] in years to come other artists and writers might even reference what we’ve done.

Marvel.com: Black Bolt’s is one of those Kirby costumes that hasn’t really been changed much since his inception. Why do you think that is?

Christian Ward: It’s funny because, up to our Black Bolt, Steve McNiven had designed this badass body-armor—Warrior Black Bolt—that he’d been sporting throughout UNCANNY INHUMANS and INHUMANS VS. X-MEN. It didn’t feel right that he be wearing that in our cosmic prison. Especially since the story deals with his vulnerability so much.

It was great to return him to something more stripped back and inline with what Kirby created. To answer your question why Bolt’s costume has endured, it’s such a bold and pure design. There’s so little that can go wrong with it. It’s almost pop art. Stacked full of “Kirby Konfidence.”

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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Writer Matthew Rosenberg opens up about bringing back Jean Grey!

Resurrection has always been the essence of the Phoenix. The mystical bird bursts into flames and returns reborn, stronger than ever.

So too, it seems, it will be for Jean Grey.

After years gone from the Marvel Universe—dead and buried in the minds of her friends, family, teammates, and enemies—she will complete that transformation from ash to stronger than ever once more.

The creative team of Matthew Rosenberg and Leinil Yu have come aboard in PHOENIX RESURRECTION this fall to help her on her way from the grave to flying above the Earth once more. We found Rosenberg getting fitted for an asbestos suit and he graciously answered our questions as the tailor took his measurements.

Marvel.com: How does it feel to be the one tasked with bringing back the adult Jean Grey? Did you advocate for the role or did Marvel come to you?

Matthew Rosenberg: Crazy. It feels crazy. [UNCANNY X-MEN] is the book I learned to read with. I have been a fan my whole life. And Jean…Jean is the heart of the team. She ties everything together. For her to have been gone so long, it always felt like an open wound. Getting the chance to maybe heal that, it’s an honor I don’t take lightly.

Marvel came to me with this, I didn’t advocate for it. I mean, I did in the sense that I talk about the X-Men all the time to anyone who will listen. But I didn’t specifically fight for this book. [Marvel Editor-in-Chief] Axel Alonso and [X-Men Senior Editor] Mark Paniccia brought it to me and asked if I had any ideas. I casually said what I would do to bring her back and they both looked real surprised. To be honest, I thought I’d just lost the gig. But finally they told me that was not at all what they had in mind, but they liked it. And from that point on it’s just been a whirlwind.

Marvel.com: What creative challenges does writing this book present for you? What opportunities?

Matthew Rosenberg: The biggest challenge is obviously doing it justice. People love Jean. I love Jean. Some people desperately want to see her back because they miss her, and I want to do right by them. But others feel really strongly that her death was monumental and we should respect that. And I get that 100%. I’m hoping we can tell a story that makes those people understand why we brought her back. We actually have something to say, it means something. And I think all of that, trying to please everyone, is the real trick.

As for opportunities, for me it’s two things. Getting to use the X-Men, all of them, is a huge one. Getting to explore her relationships with them, showing how they react to certain things, what things mean to them, is a real blessing because these characters have ties to her that long time readers will understand. There is an emotional shorthand to Beast or Bobby or Logan or Storm seeing her again. It’s heavy. And the other great storytelling opportunity we have is how powerful Jean and Phoenix are. They can create worlds and rearrange minds. That is something we go into a bit and I think it will keep readers on their toes.

Marvel.com: What is essential to writing Jean “right” in your opinion? How similar or different is this Jean than the one we knew before she died?

Matthew Rosenberg: One of the big keys to getting Jean is to actually study her progression as a character. From the meek and quiet student, to the bad ass team member, to the goddess, to death, and back again. She has had these changes; the Marvel Girl of old is not the same as Phoenix, or Jean in X-FACTOR, or the Jean that raises Cable in the future, or the Jean that fights Emma for the heart of Scott. All of these are evolutions of who she is. And our book, it does something a bit different. This isn’t an evolution. It’s a resurrection. But I can’t say much more than that.

Marvel.com: What’s the tone and setting of the book? How does Leinil Yu hope you achieve the look and feel of the book you are looking for?

Matthew Rosenberg: Our tone and setting change as things go. It’s a bit of a mystery, a bit of [an] epic super hero book, and a bit of an emotional character study. We travel all over the world in the series and it sort of just becomes this race to answer some questions nobody wants to ask.

As for what Leinil brings? Everything. He is a titan in storytelling, character, action—you name it. And he brings all of that. There are some genuinely creepy moments in the book and he knocks it out of the park on those. But there are also some real tender moments and those hit just as hard. I know this sounds crazy, but more than once I have actually been a little sad that I’m writing this book because I want so badly to just be able to read a PHOENIX RESURRECTION book with Leinil on art as a fan. I want to pick it up off shelves and not know what was going to happen. And seeing his work now, I know I’d be blown away. It’s gorgeous as always.

Marvel.com: Who else can readers expect might be popping up in the book?

Matthew Rosenberg: If there is an X-Man you like, there’s a strong chance they pop up. We’re doing a lot of fan favorites, a lot of deep cuts, and everything in between. Not everyone is going to get the screen time they deserve. But this is all hands on deck for the X-Teams.

Marvel.com: How does Jean’s return echo through the lives of others? Any insight into how it might affect the Marvel Universe at large?

Matthew Rosenberg: For the X-Men it will have an immediate effect. This will hit all of them. It’s going to be huge for the X-Men with a ton of ramifications across the board. As for the larger Marvel U…you’ll have to wait and see.

The wait continues later this fall with PHOENIX RESURRECTION from Matthew Rosenberg and Leinil Yu!

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Matthew Rosenberg leads Quake and the Warriors down a dangerous path!

Quake has committed to going too far. And the Secret Warriors know it.

They don’t approve of her plan…but what can they do to stop it? On October 18, writer Matthew Rosenberg and artist Juanan Ramirez bring Quake face to face with her mentor’s killer as her scheme comes to a head in SECRET WARRIORS #7!

We spoke with Matthew to hear more about where Quake has been, where she may be going, and why the Warriors might just have to come along for the ride.

Marvel.com: Quake has changed in the wake of Phil Coulson’s death—describe her state of mind at the beginning of issue #7.

Matthew Rosenberg: A lot of her life has been about finding people and things she can trust—and then losing them. Coulson, Nick Fury, S.H.I.E.L.D., Captain America, various teammates…all of it adds up. Now she feels really alone.

In addition to that, she’s never quite come to terms with her powers the way other heroes have. Fury used her as a weapon before she found out about her family and her Inhuman genes without any support network.

She has this thing inside her—this incredibly destructive force that she can only barely control. And she has always had a purpose and a support network to help her focus and aim her powers, but they are all gone now. So Quake has become a weapon with no target. Just rage and fear and loneliness all simmering below the surface. She can be very dangerous and maybe even a little self-destructive at this point.

Marvel.com: How do you maintain Quake’s essential characteristics as she goes through these major changes?

Matthew Rosenberg: I feel like that’s the real challenge. We need to give readers the Quake they all love: strong, independent, smart, snarky, dangerous, cool, and a little vulnerable, while still changing that stuff.

Luckily, we’ve had a few issues to establish her and watch things go from bad to worse, but now we are really accelerating toward a brick wall. The key has been making sure the real Quake shines through in the darker moments. I try to make sure she has the funny line or doesn’t get frustrated with something dumb—just those little touches where Quake pulls people back in and doesn’t let them lose sight of the fact that Daisy still exists under all the rage and pain.

Marvel.com: How does Juanan Ramirez capture Quake’s internal and external struggles? How have you crafted those moments together?

Matthew Rosenberg: Juanan has been great. He draws Quake in such a terrifyingly badass way. I love it. She really feels like she grew up under Nick Fury. But he gives her these little moments, her acting, that are the perfect chance to see her be frustrated or upset. I think she feels really human—she has these little aspects of herself that peek out when she doesn’t want them to. And Juanan captures those remarkably well. Also, he draws a badass fight scene.

Marvel.com: Does Quake even know what she wants to do with Deadpool when she catches up to him?

Matthew Rosenberg: She has a plan, for sure. When your powers allow you to level a city, killing one dude feels like an easy task. Sure, Deadpool would be pretty hard to kill, but if you bring enough stuff down on top of him or liquefy all of his organs, he’ll hopefully get the message and die.

Marvel.com: What are the rest of the Warriors feeling about Quake and her quest?

Matthew Rosenberg: The Warriors are done with Quake. She was a loose cannon at best—and a torturer and (wannabe) assassin at her worst. But this team has never been about wanting to be together, it’s always been about needing to be together. And right now, they need Quake. And that only makes it worse. It’s one thing to have to rely on someone you don’t like. It’s quite another when they’d rather be murdering someone than helping you.

Marvel.com: Does Deadpool have an awareness of the enemy he’s made?

Matthew Rosenberg: No, he has no idea. Deadpool has a lot of enemies though and he can take a lot of damage. And he’s also real crazy. So planning for stuff isn’t as important for him as it might be for other people. But yeah, he has a whole world of pain coming his way.

Marvel.com: Regardless of whether or not Quake realizes her goals, what kind of ramifications does this journey have for the team?

Matthew Rosenberg: In a lot of ways, Quake felt like the head of the team. It’s arguable that the team had three heads at time, but she stood at the forefront. And her mission now runs counter to the rest of the team’s needs.

She is on such a personal path—such a possibly self-destructive one—that it almost feels like the only real choice either standing in her way or not. If they won’t join her or get her to quit, then the team may lose another member. And at that point, can they be called a team at all?

SECRET WARRIORS #7, by Matthew Rosenberg and artist Juanan Ramirez, drops on October 18!

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Art legend Mark Bagley speaks on a return to the sinister symbiote!

Mark Bagley has drawn plenty of characters over the years, but many readers associate him with a certain Wall Crawler. The artist penciled many of Spider-Man’s adventures in the late 80s and early 90s before eventually moving on to team with Brian Michael Bendis on an epic ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN run.

It’s important to remember, though, that he also had a big part in bringing Venom into the spotlight during the character’s prime. Bagley drew the VENOM: LETHAL PROTECTOR limited series in 1993 and also helped introduce the Ultimate version later down the line.

Now the veteran artist finds himself working with writer Mike Costa to have Eddie Brock and his symbiote partner reclaim the “Lethal Protector” title in VENOM #155 on October 4 as he safeguards a group of dino-people and does his best to keep them safe against the likes of Kraven the Hunter! We talked with Bagley about returning to Eddie Brock’s world, working with Costa, and the inherent fun of drawing dino-folks!

Marvel.com: You’re no stranger to the world of Spider-Man, but what kind of challenges does focusing on Venom for this amount of time offer?

Mark Bagley: I really could say, “Same [expletive], different day,” but that is too simple. The process of drawing and storytelling is really the same no matter the subject. But it is always interesting addressing an abstract character like Venom. I’m having fun trying to approach this in new and different ways than I’ve done before.

Marvel.com: Does framing Venom as a hero change how you approach him at all?

Mark Bagley: Even way back in the original LETHAL PROTECTOR [limited] series Eddie/Venom saw himself as a hero. Let’s face it: he is a little nuts. I don’t want to portray Eddie visually as bent, though. I think it’s subtler than that. What I’m hoping comes across is that, 25 years or so later, my drawing and storytelling skills have improved. I think improving is the goal of most artists.

Marvel.com: A lot of people are excited to see your take on this new version of Venom, but how are you handling Eddie Brock? How has he changed given all of his recent experiences?

Mark Bagley: Really not much of a visual change to Brock. I resisted the temptation—easily—to add the mullet I had him sporting back in the original [LETHAL PROTECTOR]. That was a bad choice on my part!

Marvel.com: How fun was it designing dinosaur people and their environs under NYC?

Mark Bagley: What is not fun about drawing dinosaur guys?! Really, I just approach them as doodles. I start the drawing with an idea of the dino-guys’ general size and then just start noodling away. It’s a lot of fun. Often I have a particular species of dino in mind, but most often I just start whacking away.

Marvel.com: This story will find Venom facing off against Kraven the Hunter. How is it balancing the very human and primal Hunter against the symbiote?

Mark Bagley: Venom is violent, dangerous, and a bit unhinged. Kraven is just evil. He is quite a bit of fun to draw because there is no subtleness to him. I mean, check out his pants! In a lot of ways he is more monstrous than Venom.

Marvel.com: How has it been jumping onto this train with Mike Costa who’s been driving since this volume launched?

Mark Bagley: I love Mike’s approach to this arc. It’s really just a fun comic book story. It’s really reminiscent of older comics that were primarily about fantasy and adventure with a good dash of human drama to top it off.

Mike Costa and Mark Bagley team-up to tackle VENOM #155, coming October 4!

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Writer Marc Guggenheim peers inside the head of the terrifying TV tycoon!

After years of drawing the X-Men to his own nightmare realm, Mojo has decided to mix it up and swing by New York City instead. On October 18, Mojo takes Manhattan in X-MEN: GOLD #14!

Written by Marc Guggenheim with art by Marc Laming, the mutant crossover continues as the Gold team fights alongside their X-MEN: BLUE counterparts in a war with Mojo, the Brood, and Dark Phoenix!

So, what motivates the malevolent mogul behind all this chaos? We asked Guggenheim to find out.

Marvel.com: The first time we spoke about this crossover, you mentioned that Mojo would be your nightmare television executive. Now that you’ve written him, has that perspective held up?

Marc Guggenheim: Yeah, it really has. Even more so than I imagined.

The fun thing about writing Mojo has been the opportunity to get metatextual. I really, really pushed that—particularly in issue #14. There’s a page that has a really fun joke about the nature of X-Men capacity to not only avoid being killed but to be resurrected. It gave me a chuckle to see how Marc Laming executed that; the joke really lands.

Mojo can never be too broad or too big. No matter what you write for him, it never feels over the top.

Marvel.com: What inspires Mojo on a day-to-day basis?

Marc Guggenheim: For my money, Mojo gets motivated by three things: ratings, ratings, and ratings.

It makes him a very ego-simplistic guy. He has a very simple need: he wants the biggest audience he can get his hands on. There’s something very decadent about that kind of character—the kind that acts just so cravenly that nothing will stop him in his pursuit of ratings.

If you think about ratings, they are kind of meaningless. And I say that as someone who has been working in television for 18 years. [Laughs]

There’s nothing special about ratings. It gives you an idea of how many people are watching your show, but they aren’t good onto themselves. So Mojo pursues this entire endeavor for his entire life and it is a very meaningless pursuit.

If you can see him through that light, you almost start to feel bad for the guy.

Marvel.com: What draws Mojo to the X-Men? Why does he find them so magnetic?

Marc Guggenheim: Well, that’s a good question.

He has a history with them. It’s almost like he’s killing two birds with one stone—he gets his precious ratings at the same time that messes with the people who have often made his life difficult.

Every time he deals with the X-Men, he comes away diminished. But it’s more than just the X-Men foiling his plans—he usually ends up taking a step back as a result of his interactions with them. For someone like Mojo, who has this massive ego, he gets really picky about these upstart mutants that keep vexing him at every turn.

Marvel.com: What are your thoughts on Marc Laming’s rendition of Mojo? What about his depiction really brings out those characteristics?

Marc Guggenheim: I really like Marc’s ability to capture a lot of the humor of Mojo. It can be one thing to draw Mojo as really diabolical or creepy looking, but Marc also manages to nail all the jokes that are written here.

Marc has also made Major Domo this really fun visual sidekick to Mojo. You’ll often see Major Domo’s facial expressions are providing a fun, but subtle, commentary on something probably all of us can appreciate—working with the worst boss ever. [Editor’s note: Not me! I love my bosses that will definitely read this article!]

Marvel.com: How did you and Marc go about capturing the broken physics and inherent strangeness of the Mojoverse?

Marc Guggenheim: In issue #14, Marc takes us on a tour of the X-Men’s Greatest Hits. His artwork does a fantastic job of not only replicating the look and feel of those stories, but really the look and feel of those eras.

For example, we open with a scene set around the start of “Mutant Genesis”—the beginning of [writer] Chris Claremont and [artist] Jim Lee’s three-part Magneto story in X-MEN. You’ll really feel like you are transported back. It’s really cool and fun.

I just want to say, Mike Mayhew drew issue #13, Marc draws issue #14, Diego Bernard will do issue #15, and all the issues are colored by Rain Beredo. All the artists are turning in unbelievable work. And Rain’s coloring brings it all together so even though three different artists are on board, it keeps a similar visual style all the way through.

They are really, really, really stunning looking books. All our artists are up to the challenge of the incredibly huge landscape we are playing with here. These are really big widescreen sequences across the biggest, most iconic X-Men stories that have ever been done. It has been really easy to write, but man the artists have had their work cut out for them.

Marvel.com: What about this story makes Mojo so dangerous to the X-Men?

Marc Guggenheim: Every time the X-Men have dealt with Mojo, it hasn’t just been on his terms, but on his playing field as well. For Mojo to make a breach into our world—it just ups the dramatic stakes. You’ll see throughout the series how Mojo’s plot eventually impacts Manhattan. To my knowledge—I’m always loathe to say we’ve never seen something because there are so many stories—I feel pretty confident in saying we’ve never seen this before.

Without spoiling the ending, I will say that by the end of this issue the battlefield will be very significantly changed. It sets up the climax that we will reach in X-MEN: BLUE #15.

The crossover continues in X-MEN: GOLD #14, by Marc Guggenheim and artist Marc Laming, on October 18!

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