Get ready to defend!

The Guardians flew back down, Spidey swung through again, and now the Defenders of Hell’s Kitchen return to Avengers Academy to battle a new threat in their neighborhood. Kingpin’s been imprisoned for nearly a year, and in that time Madame Gao stepped in to fill the power vacuum left in the criminal underworld of Hell’s Kitchen. The Defenders and the rest of the Academy students – with the help of a few new friends – need to dispatch Madame Gao and take back the neighborhood once more.

We grabbed a few minutes with Allen Warner, Lead Narrative Designer at TinyCo, to see what The Hand has in store for us at the “Marvel Avengers Academy”.

Marvel.com: The Defenders are making their way back to Avengers Academy! What’s bringing the team to campus once more?

Allen Warner: With the Kingpin imprisoned, Madame Gao has seized control of the Hand, and conquered Hell’s Kitchen.  The Defenders held her off as long as they could, but she countered by kidnapping some of their closest friends and allies, forcing them to regroup and call in reinforcements.  With a firm hold on Hell’s Kitchen, and the combined resources of both the Hand and Kingpin’s entire operation, Madame Gao sets her sights on retrieving a powerful artifact that Director Fury has locked away in one of his secret vaults, launching a full-scale assault on Avengers Academy.

Marvel.com: Will players be returning to Hell’s Kitchen with the new event district?

Allen Warner: Yes, we’ll be revisiting Hell’s Kitchen and all of its iconic locales like Alias Investigations, Josie’s, and the law offices of Nelson and Murdock.  We’ll also be bringing back the Academy Courthouse from our Daredevil event, and giving some new recruits fun courtroom animations.

Marvel.com: How will the Avengers battle Madame Gao and her Hand minions?

Allen Warner: The Defenders and Avengers will team up to battle Madame Gao and her special henchmen on campus, as well as traveling away from the school to stop the Hand ninjas from attempting to take over the world.

Marvel.com: As with the Guardians and Spidey events before this, will players once again be able to recruit Defenders heroes from the previous event?

Allen Warner: Yes, this is a similar structure where players will be given another opportunity to get characters from the original Daredevil event, as well as some other characters who weren’t part of that event, but make sense to be involved with the Defenders.  Players will have a chance to get Iron Fist, Daredevil, Hellcat, Elektra, Misty Knight, Punisher, Luke Cage, and Jessica Jones.  They may also have an opportunity to get some characters who you wouldn’t associate with the Defenders TV show, but who have been part of various Defenders teams in the comics.  We’ll also be resurfacing all of the outfits from the Daredevil event, including what might be my personal favorite Avengers Academy outfit of all time, Lawyer Loki.  We learned in the original Daredevil event that Loki has a gift for lawyering, and a fondness for lawyers and the profession, and that will continue in this event with some fun results.

Marvel.com: While those who missed out will be excited to try for all those returning favorites, what new faces join the mix?

Allen Warner: A cool and diverse group of characters who are often thought of as supporting players, but who will take center stage and show their heroic sides during this event: Foggy Nelson, Colleen Wing, Stick, and Claire Temple.  They each bring a really unique and fresh perspective to not only the events at hand, but the Avengers heroes and Avengers Academy traditions.  Our awesome art team did some really great and brand-new things with their various visual levels, and their animations are really fun, and play to their unique occupations, personalities, and talents.  I’m really excited about this group from a narrative perspective because there is so much unexplored territory.  These characters typically only interact with the characters in their respective spheres, so there’s a ton of opportunity to do things that no one has ever seen before.  Foggy will form relationships and go on adventures with Loki and Captain America.  Claire Temple will go on an intergalactic rescue mission with Cosmo the Spacedog.  Stick will butt heads with J. Jonah Jameson.  Madame Gao will match wits with Mephisto, and so on.  One of my favorite things about the world we’ve built in this game is having the opportunity to reimagine and expand upon existing characters and Marvel lore, and this event and this group of recruits provided an awesome opportunity to do a lot of things that have never been done before.

Marvel.com: What new ways will our heroes suit up to dispatch the Hand threat?

Allen Warner: In addition to the resurfaced outfits from the previous Daredevil event, there will be new outfits and stories for Hulk, Punisher, Elektra, Iron Fist, and Misty Knight.  We love coming up with new looks for our characters that are unique to the world of Avengers Academy, but we decided to take a different approach this time around and only include outfits that have appeared in the comics.  Some are very recent looks that fans may not even be aware of, while others are iconic looks that have been around for decades.  They all look incredible, are completely different from the characters’ usual outfits, and add a new angle to their personalities and powers that make for some really fun animations and stories.

Marvel.com: As excited as we are to dive back into Hell’s Kitchen and dispatch Madame Gao, there’s always one eye on the horizon. Can you tease anything coming down the line for the Academy and its heroes?

Allen Warner: One of our frequently teased schools will finally have to come out of hiding, and they’ll be bringing more recruitable characters with them than ever before.

For all the latest on “Marvel Avengers Academy,” stay tuned to Marvel.com and @MarvelGames on Twitter!

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See the latest teasers for 'Marvel's Iron Fist'

Who is Colleen Wing? Is she a teacher? Ally? Friend? Stars Jessica Henwick and Finn Jones discuss Henwick’s role as Colleen, a martial arts instructor, and how she gets pulled into the world of the Iron Fist, in a new featurette above!

We’re less than two weeks away from the release of “Marvel’s Iron Fist.” To get you ready, meet the Daughter of the Dragon in her official motion poster, below.

Catch “Marvel’s Iron Fist” when it debuts exclusively on Netflix March 17! Keep your eyes right here on Marvel.com, follow @MarvelIronFist on Twitter and like “Marvel’s Iron Fist” on Facebook for all the latest news and updates.

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As Kate Bishop finds a new career, we review her PI peers!

Kate Bishop loves being a super hero but knows that it cannot pay the bills. Thus, with HAWKEYE #2 on January 4, she finds herself a nice side job to line her pockets: private investigator.

In a world where good guys and bad guys battle for the fate of the universe, on the regular, Bishop recognizes that the average every day person still has problems that need solving; problems that a PI might be uniquely suited to improving.

The fact that other super powered types have reached that conclusion before her can be good news for Kate. For when times get a little rough, or when she has a question about what billing software to use to stay on top of her accounts, we put together a list of other heroes turned private dicks that she can give a jingle.

Jessica Jones
While she may have cut her teeth in the super hero game—first as Jewel, then as Knightress—Jones has always had the type of temperament a little more at home with the rough and tumble life of a PI. Alternating between run of the mill “catch my wife cheating” to the high tension “find out Captain America’s real identity” cases, Jones showed that despite self-hatred, alcohol dependence, and a general inclination away from customer service, she had private investigating in the blood.

Years later, Jones may be in a far better more stable personal place, but she has not lost her edge. Her most recent case proves that even without booze and outward turned rage, she remains one of the better frosted glass doors of the Marvel U to knock on with your problems.

Scorpion
Believe it or not, MacDonald “Mac” Gargan did not always hate Spider-Man and J. Jonah Jameson and make his bones in a bright green costume complete with tail weapon. For a time, Gargan walked the rainy streets of Manhattan charging 200 a day plus expenses.

He had a decent career going too, until he agreed to be the guinea pig in an experiment paid for by Jameson. It turns out an acute sense of amorality can serve you well when you make your money invading other people’s privacy for anyone who will pay you.

Spider-Woman
While she mostly spends her time as the more active extension of Ben Urich’s investigative reporting these days and the previous years have been marked by space travel and avenging, Jessica Drew spent several years being one of the most popular PI’s in the San Francisco phone book.

Motivated by her sense of justice—not a desire for monetary reward—Drew stepped in for those most in need who might not have convinced the average private investigator to take their case. Jessica proved so dedicated to her work that even after she lost her powers for a time, she kept the agency open and taking cases until life took her east once more.

X-Factor Investigations
Founded and headed up by Multiple Man in part to help him find his way in life, the agency boasted the likes of Wolfsbane, Siryn, Rictor, Monet, and Strong Man as operatives.

Although they took up in “Mutant Town” as their base of operations, X-Factor quickly became an international investigating force, gallivanting around the world—and eventually, through time and other dimensions—to deliver their customers the very best work they could.

Knightwing Restorations LTD
After years in the NYPD, Misty Knight lost her arm and began to experience intense depression. On top of that, she felt constrained by the job and its rules, unable to truly help those that needed it most. So, with best friend Colleen Wing’s encouragement, she quit the force and joined her pal to create Knightwing. For Wing, who had previously had her life saved by Knight when she ended up in the crossfire of a gun battle, it felt like nothing more than returning the favor.

The duo, most often known as the Daughters of the Dragon—a nickname awarded in derision but now worn like a badge—quickly gained a reputation for taking on risky and dangerous cases that set them against some truly over powering foes. Eventually, the pair transitioned to more of a bails bond focus, but both retain their highly honed undeniable talents.

Dakota North
Despite an “only the pretty survive” reputation, the fashion industry actually requires remarkable strategical thinking to prosper over the long haul. In the Marvel U, the best example of this comes from Dakota North, the model turned private investigator who made the switch without missing a beat.

The daughter of an intelligence officer, North grew up around the ideas that helped mold her into a highly successful PI. Applying her honed business acumen to it proved just the next step and, rapidly, she grew her agency to an international one with offices in Tokyo, Paris, and Rome. After a brief time staying in New York in Nelson & Murdock’s personal employ, it appears she is back out on her own, traversing the globe, and maintaining her business.

Investigate HAWKEYE #2 by Kelly Thompson and Leonardo Romero on January 4!

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Henwick will bring Colleen Wing to life for the very first time!

Jessica Henwick (“Game of Thrones,” “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”) has joined the Netflix original series “Marvel’s Iron Fist” as Colleen Wing.

A martial arts expert running her own dojo, Colleen will serve as an invaluable ally to Danny Rand as he returns to his life in New York. In the comics, Colleen first appeared in MARVEL PREMIERE #19 as one of Danny’s first friends after he left K’un-L’un.

“I’m very excited to have Jessica as our Colleen Wing,” said Executive Producer and Showrunner, Scott Buck. “She’s shown us that she can bring both a sense of quiet strength as well as an engaging vulnerability to the character.”

“Jessica brings both a youthful vitality mixed with a strong sense of authority crucial to the character,” said Executive Producer/Head of Marvel Television, Jeph Loeb. “And as anyone who’s seen her in ‘Game of Thrones’ can attest, she can throw down with the best of them, making her the perfect Colleen Wing.”

In “Marvel’s Iron Fist,” Daniel Rand returns to New York City after being missing for years. He fights against the criminal element corrupting New York City with his incredible kung-fu mastery and ability to summon the awesome power of the fiery Iron Fist.

“Marvel’s Iron Fist” is produced by Marvel Television in association with ABC Studios for Netflix.

For more information on “Marvel’s Iron Fist,” and the other exciting new Marvel Television series coming to Netflix, stay tuned to Marvel.com.

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Which of these Marvel Universe super sleuths can uncover the truth behind the Watcher's murder?

There’s a metaphorical Uatu-shaped chalk outline on the streets of Marvel’s Manhattan now that the Watcher has met a mysterious and violent end. That crime acts as the jumping off point for ORIGINAL SIN, a Marvel Comics event that will shed light on previously dark corners of continuity, thus forever altering the course of the heroes involved. Jason Aaron and Mike Deodato will launch the investigation into the Watcher’s murder in May’s ORIGINAL SIN #1. With such a big crime to solve, they might need a little help from some of the Marvel U’s sharpest private investigators.

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?

Readers might have forgotten that ol’ Mac Gargan – better known as the Scorpion or one of the more recent hosts of the Venom symbiote – started out as a private eye way back in his first appearance. J. Jonah Jameson hired Gargan to spy on Peter Parker in order to find out how the awkward teen consistently captured dynamite photos of Spider-Man. The gig’s intensity escalated quickly, and Jameson had Gargan outfitted with a scorpion-like battle suit. From that point on, Mac forever turned his back on his P.I. career in favor of villainy. Good luck getting this guy to solve the Watcher’s murder. His detecting game’s a little rusty.

Daughters of the Dragon (2006) #1

Daughters of the Dragon (2006) #1

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Best friends Misty Knight and Colleen Wing, the Daughters of the Dragon, worked so well together that they started their own private investigations business: Nightwing Restorations, Ltd. Together, the duo kept the streets as clean as they could, oftentimes teaming up with fellow super-powered duo Luke Cage and Iron Fist. With Misty’s history as a police officer and Colleen’s expert sword swinging know how, these two proved to be some of the most formidable crime fighters in Manhattan. Unfortunately, the Watcher’s home base on the moon falls a little ways outside of their jurisdiction.

The Pulse (2004) #14

The Pulse (2004) #14

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Ex-super hero Jessica Jones enjoyed a second career as a private investigator operating in Manhattan’s shadows. From her non-descript office, Jones took got herself mixed up in a number of high profile cases involving Captain America, Spider-Man, and her allies in the Avengers. Since leaving her private eye career behind, Jessica’s become a proud wife, mother, and super hero. She currently has her hands busy with both her daughter and husband Luke Cage’s new Mighty Avengers endeavor.

Madrox (2004) #5

Madrox (2004) #5

  • Published: January 19, 2005
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: August 24, 2009
  • Rating: MARVEL PSR
  • Writer: Peter David
  • Penciller: Pablo Raimondi
What is Marvel Unlimited?

Operating out of Manhattan’s Mutant Town neighborhood, Jamie Madrox and his team at X-Factor Investigations offered help to those in need – mutant or human. With powerhouses like M and Strong Guy and ferocious fighters like Longshot and Shatterstar on the payroll, Multiple Man’s team could most likely put whichever cosmic force took out the Watcher under citizen’s arrest. Unfortunately, Madrox’s team recently went their separate ways, leaving an all-new, corporate-sponsored X-Factor in their wake.

Daredevil (1998) #108

Daredevil (1998) #108

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Dakota North might just be the most successful private eye around. She has offices all over the globe and works for high-paying clients like fashion designers, models, and best-selling authors. She even mixes it up with super heroes on the regular; Daredevil hired her to be both an investigator and bodyguard for his best friend Foggy Nelson. If the super heroes want Uatu’s killer caught, they should follow their compasses to North.

Who will solve the mystery behind the Watcher’s murder? Find out this May in ORIGINAL SIN #1!

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Digital comics to help move along your week, for free

Welcome to FREE Mondays! Each week we focus on all of the newly digitized books you can read for FREE inside the greatest collection of Marvel comics available online: Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited! Plus, we’ll let you know what’s coming up next week for FREE, too! With each book, not only are you getting a free peek inside Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited, but each free Digital Comic either gives you a look at a book featured in a recent collection or a comic that’s in stores now.

How would you like to have three free digital comics to help get you through the school and work week? Here ya go!

SHADOWLAND: BLOOD ON THE STREETS (2010) #1
SHADOWLAND: DAUGHTERS OF THE SHADOW (2010) #1
DEADPOOL (2010) #1000

Find out what next week’s five free digital comics will be below!*

MARVEL 70TH ANNIVERSARY FRAME ART (2009) #1
MYSTIC COMICS 70TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL (2009) #1
MISS AMERICA COMICS 70TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL (2009) #1
MODELS INC (2009) #2
MARVEL ADVENTURES FANTASTIC FOUR (2005) #44

*All scheduled issues subject to change.

SHADOWLAND: BLOOD ON THE STREETS


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Colleen Wing made a deal with the devil and now she must pay the price

COVER BY: Jean-Baptiste Andreae
WRITER: Jason D. Henderson
PENCILS: Jean-Baptiste Andreae, Ivan Rodriguez
INKS: Ivan Rodriguez
COLORS: Jorge Fares Maese Ramirez
LETTERED BY: David L. Sharpe
THE STORY:
SHADOWLAND TIE-IN!! Colleen Wing made a bargain with the devil and now she has to pay the price. Trapped in the dungeons of Shadowland with her new sisters-turned-enemies at her heels, Matt Murdock offers the sword-slinger a second choice: escape from the prison he’s built or the truth about her dead mother’s shocking connection to the Hand. Can Colleen find the inner strength to stand up to the hero who once inspired her or will she be forced to lose her mother a second time? Find out in the shocking conclusion that will change this Daughter of the Dragon’s world forever! Rated T
PRICE: 3.99
IN STORES: November 10, 2010

To find a comic shop near you, call 1-888-comicbook or visit www.comicshoplocator.com

Not a subscriber to Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited yet? Join now!

Download SPIDER-WOMAN and ASTONISHING X-MEN Motion Comics now on iTunes! For more information on motion comics, visit the Marvel Motion Comics hub!”

Download episodes of “X-Men: Evolution”, “Wolverine and the X-Men”, “Fantastic Four: World’s Greatest Heroes” and “The Super Hero Squad Show” now on iTunes!
Check out the official Marvel Shop for your favorite Marvel Heroes!

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