Comics' top creators forge the future of the Marvel Universe this August!

Once upon a time, a kid from New York City picked up a shield and charged into battle…A prodigal son lifted a sacred hammer and proved himself worthy…And an arrogant genius forged an armor that would harness his true potential. Together, they became some of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and ushered in the age of marvels! This August, prepare for Marvel’s GENERATIONS, but…what is the startling secret that ties them all together?

GENERATIONSbrings together Miles Morales and Peter Parker, Laura Kinney and Logan, Amadeus Cho and Bruce Banner, plus more, and illuminates the path that all these heroes will take into the future for a thrilling quest unlike anything seen in the Marvel Universe before.

A colossal collaboration of today’s greatest creators, Marvel’s GENERATIONS continues the evolution of the Marvel Universe as the new class of heroes stand shoulder to shoulder with those who have trail blazed their legacy.

Running August to September, this 10-issue series put to the test in this universe-wide team-up that will shed light on the most pressing questions about the future of the Marvel Universe, and the fate of everyone’s favorite heroes.

August On Sale

GENERATIONS: THE STRONGEST starring Bruce Banner and Amadeus Cho, the Totally Awesome Hulk
Written by Greg Pak
Art by Matteo Buffagni

GENERATIONS: THE PHOENIX starring The Phoenix and Jean Grey
Written by Cullen Bunn
Art by RB Silva

GENERATIONS: THE BEST starring Wolverine and All-New Wolverine
Written by Tom Taylor
Art by Ramon Rosanas

GENERATIONS: THE THUNDER starring The Mighty Thor and The Unworthy Thor
Written by Jason Aaron
Art by Mahmud Asrar

GENERATIONS: THE ARCHERS starring Hawkeyes, Clint Barton and Kate Bishop
Written by Kelly Thompson
Art by Stefano Raffaele

September On Sale

GENERATIONS: THE BRAVEST starring Captain Mar-Vell and Captain Marvel
Written by Margie Stohl
Art by Brent Schoonover

GENERATIONS: THE MARVELS starring Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel
Written by G. Willow Wilson

GENERATIONS: THE IRON starring Iron Man and Ironheart
Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by Marco Rudy

GENERATIONS: THE SPIDERS starring Peter Parker: Spider-Man and Miles Morales: Spider-Man
Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by Ramon Perez

GENERATIONS: THE AMERICAS starring Steve Rogers: Captain America and Sam Wilson: Captain America
Written by Nick Spencer
Art by Paul Renaud

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She might lead Generation X today, but she got her start in a mall!

Every Friday we use the powers of Marvel Unlimited to look back at the very first appearance of a major character, place or object that made waves this week.

She’s been an X-Man, a New Warrior, a mom, and a vampire, and now Jubilation Lee serves as the leader of a group of mutant misfits in the pages of GENERATION X by Christina Strain and Amilcar Pinna. Before all that, though, she started as a homeless mall rat with mutant powers showing off to small crowds in the pages of UNCANNY X-MEN #244 by Chris Claremont and Marc Silvestri. Unlike some of her fellow mutants, she seemed to know exactly what her mutant ability entailed, namely the power to control “articulate, quasi-animate, transitory plasmoids.”

Not everyone at the Hollywood Mall enjoyed her displays, though, especially the security guards who patrolled the place. She gave them the old razzle-dazzle before announcing her code name and then tumbling her way out. Thanks to interference run by nearby skaters and some more impressive acrobatics, she got away. All of this made the head rent-a-cop so mad that he called in a group of mutant hunters called M Squad.

Uncanny X-Men (1963) #244

Uncanny X-Men (1963) #244

What is Marvel Unlimited?

At this time, the X-Men lived in the Australian outback, an arrangement that seemed to grate on more than a few members. To help alleviate the stress of devoting their entire lives to saving a world that hates and fears them, Dazzler, Storm, Rogue, and Psylocke decided to go shopping at the very same establishment that Jubilee previously parlayed her powers thanks to a portal provided by Gateway.

After a bit of shopping fun, the X-Women retired to a joint called Hotbods, which triggered an alarm on the hapless M Squad’s equipment. First, they ran into Jubilee though and fired on her, which drew the attention of our heroines. They made short work of the goons and had Gateway open up another portal home, but Jubilee jumped through to join them in the next issue!

Over the years, Jubilee went from new kid on the block—and Wolverine’s protégé—to the experienced member of the original Generation X team. Since then she’s served on her fair share of X-Squads, but lost her powers on M-Day. After trying to use tech to recreate those abilities, she got turned into a vampire by Xarus instead.

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With some help from her friends she’s gotten the vampirism under control and even adopted a baby named Shogo who will go on to become a great hero, at least in one possible future. Now she’s juggling all that while playing mentor to some of the more fringe students at the Xavier Institute for Mutant Education and Outreach located in New York City’s Central Park.

Flash Forward

Jubilee jumped onto the comic scene in 1989, making her one of the marquee teen characters of the franchise when the “X-Men” animated series launched on Fox in 1992. The show even used her as the point of view character for the audience, basing part of the first two-part episode, “Night of the Sentinels,” around her. Much like in her first comic appearance, she started out in a mall, though this time Sentinels broke in and attacked. Also, the entire X-Men team jumped in to save her. Over the course of the show’s five-season run, Jubilee became an integral part, even mirroring her comic relationship with Wolverine.

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The Inhumans set course for the Kree’s shattered planet for a reunion with Ronan!

Hala has been visited by much tragedy over the years. Most recently, the planet became basically uninhabitable leaving only Ronan the Accuser to keep silent watch over his shattered former sphere of residence.

For many that survived Hala’s recent destruction, one group stands out amongst all others as being key in the world’s destruction: the Inhumans. Ronan certainly would count himself amongst those with that opinion.

So just imagine the awkwardness that will ensue when ROYALS #4 hits this June 21, bringing the Inhuman ruling family back to the desolate globe that formerly served as Kree homeworld. And if that might be galling enough to Ronan all on its own, wouldn’t you just know that they have come to ask for a favor?

We found writer Al Ewing hiding in the game room upstairs looking to avoid the squabbles and asked him for the latest Kree-Inhuman gossip.

Marvel.com: The connection between the Inhumans and the Kree is a long-standing “fact” of the Marvel Universe. However, there hasn’t been much of that story told. What is your take on their historic relationship? How are things between them before this issue?

Al Ewing: Things are not great. A short and simple version of the history is that Black Bolt and company came to the Kree Empire, took it over, and then later went off to pursue their own projects, leaving Ronan and Crystal in charge. Ronan resurrected a version of the Supreme Intelligence, The Supremor, who promptly declared war on the Inhumans and the Earth, whereupon Ronan quit to be with Crystal.

Unfortunately, a peace treaty between the Kree and the Inhumans required Ronan to separate from Crystal and go back into the Supremor’s service. Crystal basically agreed to that, out of a sense of duty to both races and over Ronan’s objections. And after that, Hala was destroyed and Supremor with it. And in the same incident, Ronan got cosmic powers from a magic mirror. And here we are.

So, to answer your question…the relationship isn’t all it could be.

Marvel.com: Regardless of the past, Hala is a very “hot spot” especially between the Kree and the Boltagons specifically. Why return to what is, essentially, the scene of the crime?

Al Ewing: Hala contains some buried knowledge—a piece of history pertaining to the Kree and the Inhumans both, a lost secret of Terrigen. Bringing it to the surface will let the Royals know if it’s possible for them to bring the Inhumans back to their former glory, and whether they can atone for their own crimes in the process.

Meanwhile, for Ronan, Hala is a planet-wide graveyard, a sacred place. He doesn’t like visitors at the best of times and especially not these visitors.

Marvel.com: How are dynamics changed by Maximus being present, not Black Bolt?

Al Ewing: If Black Bolt was there, he’d probably be the target of Ronan’s wrath. He’s responsible. He conquered the Kree, he chose to abandon them, and it was his diktat that tore Ronan and Crystal out of their happy place and [sent] Ronan back to serve a monster.

Maximus doesn’t figure so much on [Ronan’s] radar. He was the weaponsmith, the court jester, and the occasional traitor, but in Ronan’s eyes he’s never been the important one. So Ronan will probably leave him on the back burner and concentrate on other targets. Whether Maximus will feel the same, I don’t know. Ronan did play a big part in his parents getting killed.

Royals #4 cover by Jonboy Meyers

Marvel.com: Ronan’s connection with the Inhumans is especially complex. What is his reaction to seeing them again? How does it make Crystal feel to encounter her partner in a failed arranged union?

Al Ewing: Ronan’s not in a very good mental state when he sees them again. He’s angry, he’s sick with grief, he’s looking for someone to blame. His immediate reaction is to get hold of them for a little chat, as only a cosmic-powered Accuser of the Kree can do.

As for him and Crystal, they’ve got a lot to talk about. From Ronan’s point of view, he blames her, because it was her decision to effectively annul their marriage—a marriage that had gone from mutually-agreed convenience without any intimacy, to a full-on actual true-love connection—and he’s bound that up with a lot of other stuff he’s going through.

Crystal’s in a different place. She’s got responsibilities to the Inhumans, to her child from a previous marriage, to her home planet. There’s been just as much running from one crisis to the next for her as for him, but she’s managed to move on in a way that he hasn’t. What that means when they’re in a room together? I don’t know. I guess we’ll all find out.

Marvel.com: This marks the first full issue with Thony Silas on art. What does he bring to the book?

Al Ewing: Thony’s got a good style for these issues—shadowy, a little sinister in places. Plus he does great things with [previous artist Jonboy Meyers’] character designs for the book. I really enjoyed his work on issue #3, and he came up with a layout suggestion for a particular bit in #4 that I’m kicking myself a little for not thinking of [first]. It’s going to be nice to see out this first arc with him.

Marvel.com: Why is this a cannot miss capture in the evolving relationship of the Inhumans to the larger Marvel U?

Al Ewing: There’s a thing readers should understand with this book: we’re not doing business in the normal way. There will be no tie-ins until we get back to Earth. We’re self-contained, telling our own story, beholden to nobody, and we’re on a trip out to the far reaches of Marvel Space, and we’re going to come back changed, and carrying something very special with us.

And then we’re going to see what the other two books have been doing, and what they’re bringing to the party. And we’ll see what happens when we put it all together and shake it around a little.

Maybe it’ll turn to gold. Maybe it’ll explode. I honestly have no idea, but I do know that it’s not the job of the Inhumans to ever be predictable. So…I guess we’ll all find out together.

Al Ewing and Thony Silas reunite Ronan with ROYALS in issue #4 on June 21!

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Preview new Hasbro Legends of Thor, Malekith and more!

Recreate legendary battles between the Nine Realms with the Marvel Legends Series Battle for Asgard 5-Pack! This mighty set comes in premium packaging with original artwork by Tyler Jacobson, and includes 6-inch scale Malekith, Marvel’s Bor, Ulik, Marvel’s Odinson, and Thor figures. Each figure features multiple points of articulation, premium design, and character-inspired sword and hammer accessories. Includes 5 figures and 5 accessories. The Marvel Legends Series Battle for Asgard 5-Pack will be for sale at San Diego Comic-Con 2017. Following the convention, a limited number will be available on HasbroToyShop.com.

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Sina Grace prepares Bobby Drake for a reunion with Kitty Pryde and more!

It may be spring, but there’s a cold front heading your way this June in the all-new series ICEMAN, written by Sina Grace with art by Allessandro Vitti!

To prepare you for the brewing storm we spoke with Grace to find out just what to expect and here’s the deal: The new series follows present day Iceman working through some of the more human aspects of his life that he has never really dealt with, like relationships, sexuality and how to be a successful adult. We understand those feels, Bobby. Oh and let’s not forget there’s a younger Bobby running around town who, according to Grace, slays life; nothing like competing with yourself.

So just who is Bobby Drake?

“He’s the funny guy who shoots ice out of his hands and says one-liners,” states Grace. “So instead of working around that I said, no, he’s very compartmentalized. And so we are looking at what comes after the laughter.” But let’s be clear: there will not be a shortage of one-liners. “I like the jokes I write for him,” the writer clarifies. “They aren’t jokes I could say, but when Bobby cuts them they work.”

And when ICEMAN #2 hits on June 21, you can bet several of these jokes poke fun at the weird, ex-girlfriend-but-still-fellow X-Man dynamic he has cooking with Kitty Pryde. “Awkward is an understatement,” muses Grace. “But Bobby and Kitty are both very responsible super heroes so they’ll never let what they haven’t worked out get in the way of helping people, or the world.” So when a new mutant’s powers emerge, the two former lovebirds set out to give him ye ol’ X-Men spiel, but things start to get a little slippery. “The situation definitely exacerbates what’s been left unspoken,” teases Grace.

Iceman #2 cover by Kevin Wada

Kitty has to deal with the fact that her ex-boyfriend is gay, and Bobby still isn’t exactly the, “Hey girl, let’s sit down and talk this through,” type. Luckily, his walls might be melting just a tad though. “He’s admitting that there is stuff to talk about and it can’t just be swept under the rug with a joke,” confirms Grace. So while they do progress it may take a few more awkwardly tense encounters before they can really put behind their history together to a copacetic friendzone future.

Oh and as an added bonus I’ll let you guys in on a little inside secret: Turns out Grace really likes “Sex and the City,” go figure, so artist Vitti decided to run with that, pretty literally, by giving Iceman a whole line of slick kicks that even Carrie Bradshaw would envy. Probably lost you at the “Sex and the City” reference, but hey at least you can say you know what it’s like behind the scenes!

Be sure to catch all the action, adulting progress, and cool shoes in ICEMAN #1 out June 7, and ICEMAN #2 out June 21!

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Writer Chip Zdarsky takes us downtown for the brand-new Spidey series!

The Webhead in the Big Apple! The Wall-Crawler in The City That Never Sleeps! The kid that lives with his aunt in the place that has really good bagels!

Spider-Man in New York City!

On June 21, Spidey returns to his Friendly Neighborhood roots with the brand-new series PETER PARKER: SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN! Led by the all-star creative team of writer Chip Zdarsky and artist Adam Kubert, this Spidey story returns to where it all began: a high school kid living—and fighting crime—in New York, New York.

We spoke with Chip about the Spider-Man books that he read growing up, the dynamic that New York contributes to a story, and the real-life inspirations for this new take on an old favorite.

Marvel.com: Hey Chip! Tell us, what are a few of your favorite Spider-Man runs? Have you drawn inspiration from any of them for the new series?

Chip Zdarsky: I don’t want to play favorites with Spider-Man runs! They’re all precious children to me, beautiful in their own way. I will say that the period that imprinted on me the most was when I first got into comics: the mystery of the Hobgoblin’s identity! I loved it so much, especially that it featured a Peter very much down on his luck, trying to make ends meet, which felt so different to me as a kid, thinking that adults all had it together. The feel of those issues really imprinted on me, I think.

I followed Spidey after that, through his marriage to MJ, all the way to the infamous Clone Saga, before I went to college and ran out of money, never actually finding out who ended up being the actual clone—don’t tell me! But a few years after college ended I got sucked right back into the books.

So, it’s hard to pinpoint direct inspirations, really. There have been so many great runs, including now with [writer] Dan Slott on [AMAZING SPIDER-MAN], that you can’t help but be inspired by all the takes on the character.

Marvel.com: Do you have a favorite Spidey story that takes place in New York? What’s the most enjoyable part of the dynamic that NYC brings to a classic Peter Parker/Spider-Man story?

Chip Zdarsky: It’s the smaller moments in comics featuring New York that stick with me, really. His interactions with its jaded citizens, half of whom see him as a hero, half of whom see him as an annoyance.

Peter Parker: Spectacular Spider-Man #1 cover by Adam Kubert

I love the stories where he’s up against an unbeatable foe, trying to save the city and himself simultaneously. Two notable ones for me are his encounter with Firelord in the mid-80s, which has Spider-Man up against a herald of Galactus! He enlists help from citizens, saves citizens, uses the city against Firelord, and then manages to eke out a win just barely, proving himself to be a force to be reckoned with.

There’s a similar feeling when he encounters Morlun in the early 2000s. A truly unstoppable being who has one goal: to feed off of Spider-Man. A desperate Spidey is my favorite Spidey as Morlun lays waste to New York City, endangering people in order to get what he wants. It’s so big and crazy and beautiful, especially thanks to John Romita Jr.’s art, that it feels like the damage to New York is damage to Spider-Man and vice-versa.

Marvel.com: Are there elements of your own life that have inspired you with this new series? High school Chip? Newspaperman Chip?

Chip Zdarsky: I think everyone, when writing Spider-Man, taps into their own sense of guilt and responsibility. And in the [Free Comic Book Day] issue I tapped into my relationship with my ex, who’s my best friend in the whole world, to write Peter and MJ. Besides that, my dozen years working for a national newspaper is coming in handy when writing “Daily Bugle“ scenes, and especially J. Jonah Jameson! He’s one of the greatest fictional creations of all time as far as I’m concerned.

PETER PARKER: SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN #1 by Chip Zdarsky and artist Adam Kubert, goes on sale in your neighborhood on June 21!

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Before Clint and Natasha go their separate ways, see how they first got together!

Each week, we use our super sleuth skills to dig into the histories of the characters fighting on both sides of Secret Empire!

This week’s installment of SECRET EMPIRE by Nick Spencer and Andrea Sorrentino not only established Captain America’s potentially wavering relationship with Hydra and equipped the heroes with the information they need to find the Cosmic Cube pieces, but also drove an enormous, and possibly permanent, wedge between longtime friends—and more—Black Widow and Hawkeye.

Way back in TALES OF SUSPENSE #57, Hawkeye—who decided to go from expert circus performer to masked hero after seeing Iron Man in action—got wrongfully accused of a crime. Russian spy Black Widow then appeared to save him, filled his quill with fancy arrows, and set him against Shellhead, dangling the potential for love like a carrot before the archer’s nose.

The duo continued to work together in the pages of TALES OF SUSPENSE #60 and #64, but eventually Hawkeye’s patriotism overcame his lust for the espionage expert and he went straight, joining Earth’s Mightiest Heroes along with the rest of Cap’s Kookie Quartet in AVENGERS #16.

Even though she too intended to defect to the States, Natasha found herself brainwashed and battling her former beau and his new allies in AVENGERS #29 and #30. However, she admitted that her love for Hawkeye helped break her from the mind control. The pair tried to make it work for a while, but ultimately, they went their separate ways.

Tales of Suspense (1959) #57

Tales of Suspense (1959) #57

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Natasha eventually became a full-fledged member of the Avengers herself and even led the team for a while. She also co-headlined the DAREDEVIL series for a time. Hawkeye moved on with Mockingbird, but still showed up in DAREDEVIL #99 to try and win the Widow back!

After enough time passed, Hawkeye and Black Widow figured out how to work together as friends and teammates. Most recently, Hawkeye came under fire during CIVIL WAR II for killing Bruce Banner at the doctor’s own orders. He then moved on to OCCUPY AVENGERS. Black Widow herself starred in her own acclaimed eponymous series.

So, what could cause such a rift between these two? A very clear split in ideology. Black Widow wants to assassinate Captain America for all he’s done, especially after the resistance lost so much ground trying to figure out if he was a clone or a Skrull or something else. Hawkeye, however, wants to wait and see if this Cosmic Cube plan can come together and fix his friend. In SECRET EMPIRE #2, Natasha made her position clear as she cold-clocked Clint and made off with her own agenda.

The Empire Strikes Back

If any two characters could understand the possibilities of a second chance, it’s Clint and Natasha. As you can tell from the above history lesson, both characters worked on either side of the law before becoming Avengers. A major reason they both got accepted into that organization’s hallowed halls lies with Captain America having faith in them. As Avengers and even agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., both have been able to at least try and make up for the bad they’ve done, which makes Natasha’s stance all the more troubling.

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Spidey lands in a gang war with The Green Goblin and much more!

For over 50 years, Spider-Man has been a sensational standout in the Marvel Universe, and this summer, the web-slinger swings onto the silver screen once more in “Spider-Man: Homecoming”! In celebration of this stories history, we present Spidey’s spectacular step-by-step story!

Cantankerous publisher J. Jonah Jameson hired a scientist to create a menace to destroy the wall-crawler in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #20. The result, a new criminal called The Scorpion, proved his mettle against the hero, but ultimately failed in his mission.

Peter Parker’s life intercepted that of the Fantastic Four when he visited the campus of State University and ran into The Thing and The Human Torch in FANTASTIC FOUR #35, and learned of Reed Richards and Sues Storm’s engagement in FANTASTIC FOUR #36. Later, he helped out against a clutch of crooks who tried to wipe out the happy couple’s wedding in FANTASTIC FOUR ANNUAL #3.

The Beetle arrived seeking revenge on the Torch in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #21, prompting another helping hand from Spidey. Afterward, the Circus of Crime tried to go solo without The Ringmaster in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #22, and The Green Goblin returned in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #23 to take over Lucky Lobo’s criminal gang.

Amazing Spider-Man (1963) #20

Amazing Spider-Man (1963) #20

  • Published: January 10, 1965
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Penciller: Steve Ditko
What is Marvel Unlimited?

Mysterio concocted a scheme to drive Spidey insane and reveal his identity in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #24, and a professor named Smythe approached Jameson with a mechanical Spider-Slayer to squash our hero in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #25. Things really heated up in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #26 when the web-slinger found himself in the middle of a war between The Green Goblin and a new menace known as The Crime Master. When the dust cleared from that one, The Crime Master lay dead and the Goblin escaped with his own secret identity still intact in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #27.

Even the dire danger brought on by Molten Man in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #28 couldn’t quite suck all the joy out of Peter’s graduation from high school. Still feeling a sense of freedom, Spidey stood by Doctor Strange’s side to battle the evil Xandu in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN ANNUAL #2, and later blocked a plan of revenge by an escaped Scorpion on J. Jonah Jameson and himself in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #29.

When Jameson offered a $1000 reward for the capture of a burglar known as The Cat in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #30, Peter swung into action to snag the bounty, still reeling from learning of Betty Brant and Ned Leeds’ engagement. Now an official college student in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #31, Peter saw his life grow even more complicated by the arrival of The Master Planner to throw a spanner into the works to gum them up.

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Find out how Jeremy Whitley and Tamara Robertson spent Free Comic Book Day!

Most comic book fans see Free Comic Book Day as a time to score some free loot, and also a great opportunity to jump into a series they may not have read previously. But Jeremy Whitley, writer of UNSTOPPABLE WASP, and chemical and bio-molecular engineer Tamara Robertson took it up a notch. At Jeremy’s signing at Ultimate Comics in Raleigh, North Carolina, Tamara presented science demonstrations that recreated the powers of various Marvel characters. You can read more about the event here.

We followed up with Jeremy and Tamara to hear a little about how the event played out—and let’s just say, we wish we could have gone!

Marvel.com: Can you tell us about the general reaction from the audience? Did they seem engaged?

Tamara Robertson: The audience was full of energy and very excited about [Free Comic Book Day]. The tent was literally buzzing all day.

As far as my “Marvel at Science” [Super Hero] Science display, I was at a great place so the science display was in direct eye line for the audience, which drew everyone in and towards the table. There wasn’t anyone that came to the event that didn’t stop by to check out the experiments; I even had our security staff stopping by during their breaks to determine what I was up to—a few jokingly asking if I was doing “Breaking Bad” science for the kids!

Jeremy Whitley: Absolutely! We had lots of people excited about UNSTOPPABLE WASP, but I think the real star of the Free Comic Book Day show was Tamara and her experiments based around heroes of the Marvel Universe. Kids loved getting to play with the experiments and getting a chance to learn some science while they were at it.

Marvel.com: The goal of the event was to engage families—tell us a little about interacting with the kids.

Tamara Robertson: There was a large number of children at the [store], which was one of the best parts! So many parents were getting the chance to introduce their children to their favorite comics and characters from when they were young, as well as discover new characters! The kids brought great energy and a few were even in awesome costumes! They were definitely having fun.

As far as my display—the time flew as I would go through all four displays with each child and they seemed to love all of them, lots of laughter and large smiles! My favorite part was that while I was able to draw them in with my Venom Magnetic Slime engulfing my rare Earth magnet, they were excited the whole time and always ended strong—literally—with my She-Hulk demonstration. Getting to see little girls and boys out Hulk their fathers and bigger friends utilizing science was not only exciting for me but was by far the biggest crowd pleaser of all! It also enabled me to end with the slogan “Science always wins.”

Jeremy Whitley: This is one respect where I consider myself really fortunate as a comic creator. Between my work with Marvel and my creator-owned work with my all-ages series Princeless, I get to interact with a lot of young readers. Kids are always the most excited about meeting the people who make the comics, and they always have the most interesting questions. I’ve had a couple of kids approach my table with notebooks and pens to ask important questions and take notes. They’re the sharpest fans we’ve got. They inspire me to get back to work making comics!

Marvel.com: What did you enjoy most about the event?

Tamara Robertson: My favorite part was that, when I would hear little girls asking where the girl comic books were, I was able to point them straight to Jeremy and all of his incredible comics. So many of the little girls would get excited when they would see all the different types of series he was offering and the older girls especially loved the UNSTOPPABLE WASP comics with not only strong girl leads but also all the great science! We had a bit of a boomerang system going on where I would send them to him for fun girl comics and he’d shoot them back for fun science.

My favorite part of my display was sharing with the kids that their favorite Marvel comic book heroes were scientists too! Most of them didn’t realize that they had STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics] role models already in the form of their favorite comic book heroes. It was truly awesome to get to not only share a science homage to four awesome super heroes but to also elevate the role of STEM in their lives in a way that helped kids see that science is cool.

Jeremy Whitley: I loved getting to see young minds at work. We had boys and girls picking up books and reading them right there, but on top of that, they’re never happy to just sit back and have the science side of things explained to them. You can see them thinking about it, hypothesizing about how and why things work. Some of these kids could be Agents of G.I.R.L. any day!

Marvel.com: You mentioned previously that you think stories like UNSTOPPABLE WASP can help to get girls—and kids in general—interested in pursuing science. Did that seem true for the kids in attendance?

Tamara Robertson: Comics actually have always done a great job of utilizing STEM in their stories but the issue is that most of the time it’s not elevated to a point that children realize the connection. For instance, most super heroes start out as everyday scientists, technicians, engineers or mathematicians and then something alters them genetically and enhances their overall abilities. This statement in itself is riddled with science, which is why comics have always been so awesome and why most STEM professionals are also big comic fans. In the cases where normal men become super heroes, [like] Tony Stark, their gadgets are engineered to enable similar enhanced abilities. Often times the stories themselves don’t concentrate directly on this amazing tech or these genetically altering origin stories but they’re definitely there to talk about. That’s one of the incredible things about stories like UNSTOPPABLE WASP: the science is in the forefront of the story.

I think that it’s important for children—and even adults—to be aware of the awesome STEM connections to their favorite comic book heroes, which is what I hoped to accomplish with my Marvel at Science – Super Hero Science display and what Jeremy accomplishes through UNSTOPPABLE WASP each issue.  If we continue to help associate STEM with heroes and help people to see it as “cool,” we’re likely to inspire more children to pursue it and experiment with the world around them.

Jeremy Whitley: Absolutely! A lot of young WASP fans were excited to pick up the book, but just as much to dive into science. For every question about writing, girls had five times as many for Tamara about what she does and about the experiments she brought with her.

Marvel.com: Would you like to do similar events again in the future?

Tamara Robertson: This was my first opportunity to do STEM outreach at a comic book show and my first debut of Super Hero Science and I loved it!  The crowd was so excited and engaged that the day flew by, and when I reflect back on the day through photos and stories, I get to relive the excitement as the children started connecting super hero powers with real life science! I think that this type of connection will help overcome the historical stereotype of scientists and inspire more children to STEM-related fields.

Jeremy Whitley: I would love to! I never get tired of getting to interact with comics’ youngest fans. If we had Free Comic Book Day several times a year, I’d be at every one.

Marvel.com: Did you pick up any free comics yourself? If so, which ones?

Tamara Robertson: The comic book store was awesome and had a set for me to take home, which I was excited to share with the kids in my family. Sadly I wasn’t able to get to share them with them myself but I know their parents are excited to do so and I can’t wait to hear which characters they liked the most. I stayed impartial since it will be their first exposure to comics.

Jeremy Whitley: Well, I picked up the new GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, of course. My daughter snagged every comic she could find with a girl on the cover, as well as using her own money to buy a few books from fellow guest and comics writer extraordinaire Tini Howard.

Marvel.com: Which super powers did you find the most fun, interesting, or challenging to recreate? Which ones seemed to get the most involvement from the audience?

Tamara Robertson: When I created the Marvel at Science Super Hero Science display, I wanted to make an homage to some of my favorite super heroes. While I knew I couldn’t replicate directly their superpowers I wanted to showcase a scientific theory that would have a similar imagery so that kids would be able to connect the idea behind the science with a super power they knew.

For instance, Venom is obviously not a magnetic being—he’s an alien symbiotic creature—but watching an Iron Oxide embedded slime overtake a rare Earth magnet—albeit slowly—brings to mind Venom taking over Spider-Man. Kids quickly associated the takeover with Venom and were quite excited to learn more about how the slime was able to do what it did. So while the power itself wasn’t directly the same, it opened the door to talking to the audience about cohesion, adhesion, polymer development, and magnets overall. They especially loved the slime components.

I actually found myself explaining to every set of parents the ease of making the slime because most of them were trying to sneak off with it! Going into the day, I wasn’t sure if the kids would be interested in waiting as the slime overtook the magnet, but all of them were excited to watch and were amazed! I even had a set of boys that had theories on ways to make it move faster, and so during a slow moment we started testing out their hypotheses, which was super cool! They even utilized my “polymer chain” of paperclips to start testing the magnets power. Overall, they had a lot of fun learning!

From there I got to talk to them about Spider-Man and his awesome web.  The way this came about was that prior to the show I visited Kyle Hill at Nerdist—he was our fearless leader on “MythBusters the Search”—and I told him about my Venom slime idea, to which he conjectured perhaps a slime embedded with Kevlar would be more Spidey web-like. This got my cogs going, and since I had the raw materials available, I figured I would try to see what would happen. At a first pass, it made the slime stronger but was limited by the shear tearing that occurs with the slime where the fibers weren’t prevalent. While at first I thought to hold off showing this idea, I realized that science is all about trying and sometimes not quite getting it right. The coolest part about this was, by sharing this story of ideation and development and inability for full practical application, I got to start this brainstorming session with children. They were all so excited about this idea of the same material the guards were wearing in their vests being in this slime and it maybe becoming strong enough to hold Spider-Man that they wanted to see this idea succeed. They offered up tons of alternatives and additions and were all engaged in what will hopefully become a second revision of the Spidey slime that I’m sure Kyle will be able to explain beautifully on “Because Science.” Overall, this was my favorite display because it enabled me to really drive home that there’s no failing in science but instead sometimes a bit more discovery than originally planned.

My sublimation demonstration was one that brought in a lot of viewers and left a lot of grown-ups giggling in nostalgia as they revisited their youthful days playing with dry ice and water bottles. While my demonstration wasn’t explosive, it was one which let the fog banks roll and even enabled the kids to take part in creation of clouds! The initial idea was to make full form dry ice bubbles, but due to the wind on the day of the exhibit, the surface tension on the bubbles resulted in immediate popping of the large ones. But the kids didn’t seem to mind as they enjoyed the smaller bubbles and the rolling clouds.

Perhaps the most surprising to me was that the most simplistic and honestly cheapest—at a whopping $0 in equipment gear—science demonstration was the one the kids loved the most! I knew that they would be excited to get to overpower their parents by utilizing horizontal force over vertical force, but it was the amazement in their parents’ eyes that really drove the “cool” factor up for the kids. Each group would get excited about the idea of who was the strongest and testing it and then would be in awe as they were suddenly outdone by the science of She-Hulk power. Even the parents and kids that were only sort of listening would start paying attention at this point which to me was quite fun.

Marvel.com: How did you decide what powers to try and recreate? How did you come up with the demos?

Tamara Robertson: Honestly, the demos were from fun science GIFs I had seen online over the last couple years that had made me think, “Hmm that reminds me of—insert super hero.” I’ve actually compiled a folder of them over the years, so when I got invited to do a STEM demo I thought, “this is perfect,” and I went through to find ones that I could do in a tent setting. Obviously, all the flame and explosion ideas were out, but there were still some pretty cool ones that would lend themselves to shock and awe. Since I enjoy working with kids in my outreach, I thought these homages would be good demos to connect their favorite super heroes with STEM while being simple enough that they could do them at home if they wanted. In fact, I had a large number of teachers come up to my displays to talk to me about how they work with the slimes in their class but would love to bring in some of the other displays and hadn’t thought to connect it with super heroes. To me, that was really cool; not just inspiring kids but helping those that work with them every day to get ideas for inspiration as well.

Marvel.com: Would you like to mention anything else?

Tamara Robertson: STEM inspiration is everywhere; it may not be in the forefront of every part of life but if you take the time to explore the world around you, it’s definitely there. Helping kids to make those connections is one of the easiest ways to start inspiring them to STEM; it doesn’t take a camp or an expensive toy—in fact sometimes it just takes going into your own backyard. Explore with your kids; learning doesn’t end with the school year and it doesn’t start with the bell. Every day is a chance to inspire them. Learning is living and the world is getting smaller and smaller—why not go discover it!

Jeremy Whitley: If anybody is interested in learning more about Tamara and what she does, we interviewed her in UNSTOPPABLE WASP #5, which came out the first week in May. And for people that got caught up on UNSTOPPABLE WASP at Free Comic Book Day and want more Nadia right now, I co-wrote issue #7 of AVENGERS with Mark Waid, which prominently features Nadia and Victor Von Doom and is available right now!

Pick up the next new installment of UNSTOPPABLE WASP with issue #6 coming June 7 from Jeremy Whitley and Elsa Charretier!

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A new player with a familiar hammer makes their way into Jason Aaron’s epic!

Observers of all things Asgard know that we have a new player in town: the new Ultimate Thor! This God of Thunder seems ready for battle and has a hammer all his own. But who will we find behind the armor?

We asked UNWORTHY THOR and MIGHTY THOR writer Jason Aaron to weigh in on our top five best guesses—without spoilers, of course!

Steve Rogers

Marvel.com: He did wield Mjolnir in the Free Comic Book Day issue of SECRET EMPIRE. Maybe he can wield the hammer of the Ultimate Thor, too? Also, it would make sense with the tone of the end of UNWORTHY THOR #5, where it looks like this new breed of Thor has more war-like tendencies. Given where Cap stands with Hydra right now, it wouldn’t require too much of a leap.

Jason Aaron: That’s a good guess. I’ll just say, what’s going on with Steve right now is very much [SECRET EMPIRE writer] Nick Spencer’s story. I’m kept in the loop in terms of how it involves the hammer, which I was very interested in, and the Odinson will also be a part of that story. But that’s pretty much a story for SECRET EMPIRE and the books that are dealing with Secret Empire. So we won’t really see the MIGHTY THOR series dealing directly with those events.


Odin

Marvel.com: When we see the new Ultimate Thor, we can only see one eye as a shadow covers the other. And as mentioned, this Thor seems pretty war-minded, which would fit with Odin’s personality and history.

Jason Aaron: Yeah, it certainly does look like he only has one eye. Last we saw of Odin—well we haven’t seen him for a while. He’s been [holed] up inside his hall in Asgardia, dealing with the All-Mother Freya, who was poisoned by Loki. But I think it’s safe to say we haven’t seen the last of Odin in the book.

Nick Fury (senior)

Marvel.com: The one eye thing again! Also, we haven’t seen a lot of him since he became The Unseen. Giving him the role of the new Ultimate Thor would bring him back into the fold in a pretty dramatic fashion.

Jason Aaron: But he’s dead! He’d have to come back from the dead. Fury did die and kind of was reborn as something different, as The Unseen, whom we saw in UNWORTHY THOR. He was the first person to kind of realize that the hammer of the Ultimate Thor existed, that it had crossed over into our universe. The events of UNWORTHY THOR were really set into motion by him, by The Unseen. So certainly he has a connection to the hammer.


Maria Hill

Marvel.com: Highly unlikely, of course. But we can see from her dealings in JESSICA JONES, for example, that even though she has taken a hit, she won’t go down easily. She has had plenty of shady dealings that at first you might think would disqualify her from worthiness, but as noted, we’re faced now with a new breed of Thor. And yes, the new Ultimate Thor appears to be a man, but we’ve seen how Mjolnir transforms Jane Foster, so maybe not so far fetched? As the new Ultimate Thor, Maria could definitely stick it to everyone who forced her out of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Jason Aaron: That would be an interesting direction for me to take Maria Hill in! I don’t know if Brian Michael Bendis would be ok with me giving her a beard.

Gorr

Marvel.com: When Nick Fury whispered to the Odinson that “Gorr was right,” it led to his unworthiness. The God Butcher would certainly qualify as a new kind of Thor, and we’d get to see a nice symmetry in bringing this full circle.

Jason Aaron: I do like the sound of “Gorr the War Thor.” It’s got a nice ring to it. Certainly, even though Gorr died in [THOR: GOD OF THUNDER #11], when I was just starting on Thor, he continues to be a presence in the book. It should be obvious now that we’ve found out the secret of what Fury whispered. And that won’t change. In my mind, he has always been a presence in the book, and those questions that he raised and the effect he had on Thor Odinson has continued to have ripple effects through my whole run on the book. And that’s not going to change, we’ll definitely even go a step further and, I think, begin to see more of an effect and more of the impact of Gorr’s legacy and what he set in motion. And it will all kind of come back to haunt the characters in our book in a very real way.

The War Thor makes their presence felt in MIGHTY THOR #20, available from Jason Aaron and Russell Dauterman on June 21!

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