Feast your eyes on some SECRET EMPIRE OMEGA pages courtesy of Tom Brevoort!

Good golly, True Believers! It’s that time again. We’re back with a brand new episode of This Week in Marvel, the official Marvel podcast!

Catch upon all the latest comics news and info as Ryan, Ben and Tucker give you the rundown on all of this week’s greatest comics releases including CAPTAIN PHASMA, HAWKEYE, CHAMPIONS, GENERATIONS: IRON MAN AND IRON HEART, and so much more! Meanwhile, Ryan sits down with Tom Brevoort for the final word on Secret Empire (1:18:43).

Head on over to the West Coast where Christine and Eric give you the scoop on everything Film, TV, and Themed Entertainment (1:58:52). They talk the Marvel Games Inhuman event with Tim Hernandez and Danny Koo. Christine and Eric close out the show with a celebration of the acclaimed Daredevil run of Mark Waid and Chris Samnee for #TWIMURC (2:28:48)!

Download episode #306 of This Week in Marvel from Marvel.com, check out Marvel Podcast Centralgrab the TWiM RSS feed and subscribe to This Week in Marvel on iTunes, so you never miss an episode! We are now also on Soundcloud! Head over now to our new hub to listen to the full run of This Week in Marvel!

This Week in Marvel will focus on delivering all the Marvel info on news and new releases–from comics to video games to toys to TV to film and beyond! New episodes will be released every Thursday (or so) and TWiM is co-hosted by Marvel VP & Executive Editor of Digital Media Ryan “Agent M” Penagos and Marvel Editorial Director of Digital Media Ben Morse, along with Marvel.com Editor Marc Strom, Marvel.com Assistant Editor Christine Dinh, and Manager of Video & Content Production Blake Garris. We also want your feedback, as well as questions for us to answer on future episodes!  Tweet your questions, comments and thoughts about TWiM to @AgentM@BenJMorse@chrissypedia or @Marvel with the hashtag #ThisWeekinMarvel!

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The Man Without Fear and the Hand's ultimate assassin return once more!

Have you checked out “Marvel’s The Defenders” on Netflix yet? If not, what are you waiting for? If so, D3 Go! has more Defenders action for ya, with an all-new Daredevil and Elektra available in “Marvel Puzzle Quest.” We talk about the Man Without Fear and the Hand’s ultimate assassin and get the lowdown on just what they’re capable of.

Marvel.com: I’m really excited to see a new Daredevil coming down the pipe, but why make him a 5-star as opposed to a 4? What kind of things does the team look for in making a new 5-Star character? Or in making a new 3-star, like Elektra (Assassin) for that matter?

Josh Austin: Daredevil is an amazing character and the powers that were designed for the Matt Murdock version are more in line with 5-Star characters. And with the release of “Marvel’s The Defenders” on Netflix, we are excited to have our first 5-star Defender in the game. And the new 3-star Elektra is a great addition too.  We know many players are very interested in acquiring new 3-star characters so it seems like a good fit to have the combination of both these characters available at the same time.

Marvel.com: Daredevil (Man Without Fear) was one of my first PvE mainstays for his pure utility, getting rid of pesky enemy special tiles and with stuns for days. What’s different about this Matt Murdock?

Josh Austin: The 5-star Daredevil uses his sonar and his ability to damage multiple foes, but he does so with a lot more precision and really wrecks his opponents damage-wise. He also has an ability to gain health back based on each friendly strike tile on the board.

Marvel.com: Can you break down his kit for us?

Josh Austin: His first ability is called Fighting Spirit and it’s a passive yellow. When Daredevil gets below a certain health, he creates a strength 1,270 Yellow Strike tile that restores health for each friendly strike tile on the board (Max 5 tiles).

His second ability is called Hand-to-Hand and it costs 11 Green AP. This one can be devastating because it creates a countdown tile that deals damage each turn and if it’s matched away the player’s team gains 8 Green AP. However, if the tile is destroyed in any way other than being matched away, at level 5 it deals 15,525 damage and creates another Hand-To-Hand tile if one does not exist.

His last power is called Sonar Strike and it costs 9 Purple AP. Daredevil’s sonar vision helps him avoid enemy attacks and strike back by converting random enemy Strike, Protect, or Attack tiles to friendly Strike tiles and then stun the target. There is a Passive that while the enemy is Stunned, any damage dealt to that stunned enemy Daredevil deals extra damage on top of it.

Marvel.com: It seems like you’d want to pair Daredevil up with a teammate who can stun opponents, to get that juicy Sonar Strike passive damage, and someone who can easily get rid of his Hand-to-Hand tile. Anybody you have in mind?

Josh Austin: Depends on the strategy the player would like to utilize. Having characters that stun opponents to dish out the extra damage, heroes like some of the variations of Spider-Man, Thanos (The Mad Titan), Doctor Strange, Iceman, etc. Also if the player wants to use a character that fortifies the tile, that insures that the 5-Turn countdown tile will continuously damage the enemy team.

The player could benefit from using characters that create Strike tiles if they are worried about Daredevil receiving too much damage like The Punisher (Max), Rocket & Groot (Awesome Mix Volume 2), Blade (Modern). I know I’d personally use Grey Suit Black Widow for the Green AP generation and her abilities to help destroy the Hand-to-Hand tile for that extra damage.

Marvel.com: And Elektra looks like she’s keeping some of her old Unkillable tricks and learning a new one, Crippling Blow. What’s changed in this 3-Star variation?

Josh Austin: Elektra has some of the same abilities as her 4-Star counterpoint with the exception of Crippling Blow, which focuses on damage first, then leaves a 4-Turn Countdown tile on the board that deals damage to the enemy each time it counts down.

Marvel.com: How does Elektra (Assassin) fit on a team? Finding someone who can help her fire Crippling Blow seems like it would be a legit strategy.

Josh Austin: Finding someone gives her Black AP or fortifies her Countdown tile definitely works well. She’s also great with heroes that convert or destroy enemy tiles into friendly tiles like Loki, Bullseye (Classic), Daredevil (Man Without Fear) and She-Hulk (Modern).

Marvel.com: And when can we take these two ninja-trained fighters to the streets?

Josh Austin: They will debut in the Galactus Hungers event that starts today. Elektra is given out as round rewards while Daredevil can be earned in a special store called Hornhead with Legendary Tokens that can be purchased or earned as rewards given from the event. The Hornhead store runs from August 24 through August 28. There will also be a featured Elektra event called The Hunt that starts on August 27.

Be sure to check out all the Defender related Versus Tournaments including Assassin For Hire that is going on now, Cage Match that starts on August 24, and Blind Justice that starts on August 27. We are excited to share that those that earn 300+ points in these events will earn 10,000 Insider points at Marvel Insider. Visit Marvel Insider for all the opportunities to earn and redeem rewards for Marvel Puzzle Quest.

Pick up Daredevil (Man Without Fear) and Elektra (Assassin) here and stay tuned to Marvel.com for more “Marvel Puzzle Quest” news and interviews.

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Discussing Daredevil’s Legacy with writer Charles Soule!

When it comes to the world of Matt Murdock, justice is blind. And for the last 53 years, that particular form of law has set him and his alter ego, Daredevil, apart from all other heroes in the Marvel Universe. But what happens when his life of sightless vigilantism can’t transition into legitimate authority?

Wilson Fisk runs the show in New York City in a typically sinister—but completely legal—way, which leaves Matt looking to get creative to bring down The Kingpin. And on November 8, the age of Marvel Legacy begins with scholarly scribe Charles Soule and artist Stefano Landini’s DAREDEVIL #595!

With Daredevil’s legacy of justice on the brink of disarray, we spoke with Soule about the upcoming issues and how he’d like to be remembered for his contributions to the classic character.

Marvel.com: How does the Marvel Legacy banner inform this new story? 

Charles Soule: My run so far has really been all about Matt Murdock’s legacy as a super hero. He knows he can’t be Daredevil forever, so he’s been trying to do something to make his city better permanently—whether he’s wearing the horns or not. In other words, he’s trying to leave a legacy. That extends to Blindspot, it extends to the law he’s trying to put in place during the Supreme storyline, and more. The Legacy story I’m telling—“Mayor Fisk”—is where we see whether he can make that happen, or if it will all blow away in the wind.

Marvel.com: In a sentence or two, what would you say is Daredevil’s legacy within the Marvel Universe? 

Charles Soule: Daredevil is all about resolve. His powers are sort of limited compared to some of the other marquee heroes, but it never stops him. He’ll do what has to be done in the pursuit of justice, and I think the other heroes see that.

Marvel.com: Getting into the story a bit, what can we expect NYC to look like under the control of Wilson Fisk? 

Charles Soule: It’s pretty cool stuff. Fisk has been in control of the criminal machinery of the city before, but here, he runs the legitimate side as well. So, in essence, the entire NYPD works for him—not to mention everything else in the city. Fisk can do whatever he wants without fear of reprisal, and he absolutely sees the possibilities in that. Daredevil does too, of course, and it terrifies him.

Marvel.com: What shortcomings do Matt’s abilities have against this threat—and what new strategies will he use to circumvent those shortcomings? 

Charles Soule: It’s mostly what I mentioned—Fisk is legit, which means Daredevil…isn’t. Matt Murdock has always been able to rely on his city as a safe haven, of sorts, but now it’s turned against him. It gets pretty dire for ol’ Hornhead, but I don’t think we’d want it any other way.

Marvel.com: What do you hope your own legacy to be when it comes to DAREDEVIL comics? 

Charles Soule: When you’re talking about “legacy,” it doesn’t get much more relevant than this title—with both the creative teams that have worked on the character and the stories themselves, DAREDEVIL is all about legacy. I think DD has more legendary runs than just about any other character in super hero comics.

My goal has always been to really try to stand alongside the earlier stories with my run—to not be a blip between otherwise memorable chapters in the life of Matt Murdock. I’d like to add things, and take things away, and write my DAREDEVIL—to do things that later readers can point to as signature elements of this period for the character. We’ll see!

DAREDEVIL #595, by Charles Soule and artist Stefano Landini, drops on November 8!

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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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With Miles Morales held by Hydra, check out these other heroes who have spent time behind bars.

Not every hero in the Marvel Universe stays on the right side of the law. Sometimes they go one step too far—and other times, the law works actively against them. Take Miles Morales for instance: the SPIDER-MAN star fought against the vision Ulysses gave him back in CIVIL WAR II and surrendered himself to Hydra instead of killing Captain America.

Surely the former denizen of the Ultimate Universe will find his way out of the clink—but until then, he can take solace in the fact that a few of his fellow heroes have had their own stints under lock and key.

CAPTAIN AMERICA

Look at that, even the honorable Steve Rogers spent time in the pen! More than once, too! Most notably, Cap was locked up between his surrender in the last issue of CIVIL WAR and his apparent death in CAPTAIN AMERICA #25.

LUKE CAGE

Carl Lucas might have become a hero without heading to jail, but he probably wouldn’t be super strong and possess his signature impervious skin. Wrongfully accused in a drug bust and sentenced to the big house, the future Avenger agreed to participate in an experiment that gave him super abilities. After his transformation, he escaped from captivity and resumed life under the name we all know him by today.

PUNISHER

Over the years, many people have wanted to lock Frank Castle up—but no one seems capable of actually keeping him imprisoned. During the mid-‘90s, the authorities tried to send him to the electric chair—and failed. And during the most recent PUNISHER WAR ZONE, he sat in an underwater prison, but of course no walls—not even ones surrounded by water—could stop The Punisher.

DAREDEVIL

At the end of Brian Michael Bendis’ epic run on DAREDEVIL, he left ol’ Matt Murdock in quite a pickle—inside a jail cell where new series writer Ed Brubaker kept the blind lawyer incarcerated for a while. Murdock eventually got out when none other than master escape artist Frank Castle was purposefully captured as part of a jailbreak plan.

SONGBIRD

Since their inception, the Thunderbolts revolved around characters who served time in one way or another. The original squad, including Songbird, was assembled by Baron Zemo and consisted of villains masquerading as heroes. After her stint in jail, the former Screaming Mimi took to the lawful side of things—and even served as a warden on the maximum security prison known as the Raft!

IRON FIST

During CIVIL WAR, nearly every hero who sided against Tony Stark’s Superhuman Registration Act wound up incarcerated—including Iron Fist. While posing as Daredevil in an attempt to keep Hell’s Kitchen safe, Danny Rand was captured as a means to help Captain America and the other anti-registration heroes to the Negative Zone prison for a jailbreak!

WOLVERINE

Not at all unfamiliar with jail cells, Wolverine found himself imprisoned in the pages of LOGAN. Captured by the Japanese during World War II, the mutant was kept in Nagasaki before he escaped and fell in love with a local woman named Atsuko. When Atsuko was murdered, Logan followed her killer to Hiroshima, where they were caught in the atomic bombing of the city. Wolverine survived the blast, but was left scarred by the loss of his former love.

BUCKY BARNES

Even though he stepped up and filled in for Steve Rogers after the original Cap died, Bucky Barnes still stood trial for his crimes as his previous identity, the Winter Soldier. Declared innocent in the United States, Russia judged him differently—and locked him up on heightened charges. Thanks to help from someone familiar with Russian prisons—Black Widow—Bucky escaped and headed back to the U.S., where he then decided that his days holding the mantle of Captain America were over.

PETER PARKER

Miles Morales doesn’t lay claim as the only Spider-Man to wind up incarcerated—back in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #219, Peter Parker attempted to sneak into a jail as part of an exposé, but instead got caught and tossed in a cell! After Matt Murdock helped him get out of the predicament, Pete managed to publish his exposé—and apprehend a few escaped inmates in the process.

Go behind bars with SPIDER-MAN #20, by writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Oscar Bazaldua, available September 6!

 

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Sam Wilson leads the charge of the Marvel Universe’s other aliases!

Some days you just do not feel like yourself. Other days you just cannot be yourself.

On June 14, Sam Wilson has a little of column A and a little of column B to deal with in the pages of CAPTAIN AMERICA: SAM WILSON #23.

Thankfully, heroes, unlike the rest of us, can take on a different name and costume when they’re feeling a bit off. As Sam does just that with some modified Falcon gear, we take a look at some of the other identities heroes used to escape their usual costumed lives.

Nomad and The Captain

Sam Wilson actually follows in the footsteps of his formerly virtuous predecessor and mentor Steve Rogers in the trading of one costumed identity for another.

Back when the Secret Empire meant something a bit different, Rogers learned of connections between it and the President of the United States. Unable to represent a country ruled over by such a man but equally unable to not be the hero, Rogers turned to the blue and yellow togs and adapted the role of the wanderer Nomad until America could be returned to the hands of the not outright evil.

Corruption again drove Rogers out of the stars and stripes, this time when bureaucracy tried to dictate to him what fights needed fighting and what ones did not. Unwilling to compromise his beliefs or to make the Captain America uniform a symbol of the rejection of the United States Government, he instead rechristened himself and dressed in the black, red, and white uniform we now associate with USAgent as The Captain.


Jack Batlin

Matt Murdock, seemingly always in search of new and different ways to make his secret identity a complicated mess, did not adopt a new crime-fighting persona when it seemed he might be exposed by an ambitious former intern of Ben Urich’s. Instead, he doubled down on the Daredevil ID, faked Murdock’s death, and became small-time con Jack Batlin.

Before long, DD’s mind fractured under the stress of being cut off from his supports and living a lie. Working through intense visual hallucinations and dissociations, he emerged from the other side Murdock once more and Batlin has not been heard from since.

Binary

After a not yet heroic Rogue robbed her of her powers, Carol Danvers struggled to adapt to a newly unpowered life. Never one to just sit back and take it easy though, she eventually found a way to tap into a new set of abilities while in outer space with the X-Men. Unable to take back the Ms. Marvel identity at that time because of the trauma it still held for her, Danvers christened her new powerset-driven signifier Binary and called herself that until she lost much of that ability.

Ronin

Ronin, the heavy blue and green samurai inspired costume, has provided refuge for more than one hero seeking to hide from ongoing issues. Whether the suit contained an Echo anxious to shake her Kingpin-stained past, a resurrected Clint Barton who no longer felt much like Hawkeye, a Red Guardian trying to commit state assassinations without any baggage, or a Blade who just wanted to keep things on the DL, evidently, the Ronin identity seems to be a way station for those who just need a short break but don’t want to develop a whole new persona.

Yellowjacket

Less an escape from external pressures than a succumbing to internal ones, Hank Pym became Yellowjacket in the midst of a drawn out manic episode. Although he has returned to it now and then, this more confident version of himself will forever be tainted by the alter ego’s recklessness, self-centeredness, and cruelty, and the actions he perpetrated while calling himself Yellowjacket, most significantly and horribly an incident of domestic assault against the Wasp.

The Slingers

With Spider-Man framed for murder, Peter Parker found himself being hunted by scores of pursuers, costumed and otherwise. Unable to move about in his familiar red and blue costume to un-frame himself, he abandoned the Spidey mantel.

Instead, he took on four new costumed alter egos, each representing a different aspect of himself and his powers. Ricochet had been built around Spidey’s motor mouth and impressive agility, Dusk his Spider Sense and ability to use it to avoid danger and detection, Prodigy the strength and speed, and, finally, Hornet laid claim to Parker’s scientific genius.

Eventually, these new selves allowed the Wallcrawler to clear his name and let the Slingers, a quartet of teen heroes, to take up the costumes and fight crime themselves.

Go undercover in the Secret Empire with CAPTAIN AMERICA: SAM WILSON #23 by Nick Spencer and Joe Bennett, available June 14!

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Meet Matt Murdock and five other heroes who tried to hide their IDs!

During Mark Waid and Chris Samnee’s epic run on DAREDEVIL, Matt Murdock let the world know his true identity. But somehow, that secret went back into the bottle before the start of the current series. Now, almost two years later, Charles Soule and Ron Garney have begun to reveal how exactly that happened.

Daredevil’s not the only Marvel stalwart who received a second chance at a secret identity. Some heroes, in fact, have gone to some pretty lengthy extremes to restore theirs. Here’s a look at a few of them…


Daredevil

The Man Without Fear’s latest efforts to restore his secret come after a number of attempts and accidents that left him exposed.

Way back in the original DAREDEVIL #24, Spider-Man, of all people, wrote a letter to Matt Murdock telling him he knew his secret—but he promised he wouldn’t tell anybody. Too late, Wallcrawler; Foggy Nelson and Karen Page read the letter. Matt covers up his secret by creating a fictional twin brother: Mike Murdock.

Eventually Mike “dies,” but DD’s identity woes don’t end there. In one instance a TV station broadcasts Matt’s secret, but Black Panther helps save it by dressing as Daredevil. Many others discovered his secret ID over the years, leading to a storyline where he continued to deny it while a tabloid tried to out him. That song and dance continued until our hero went public and told everyone—leading us to the current storyline.

Spider-Man

Spider-Man not only almost screwed up his buddy’s secret identity, he’s had plenty of close calls himself. The list of people who knew Spider-Man’s real name grew over the years, and then during the first Civil War event, Peter Parker took Tony Stark’s advice and revealed his true name and face to the world.

But only for a short time. The “One More Day” storyline saw Spidey sacrifice his marriage to Mary Jane to Mephisto in order to save Aunt May’s life. A few years later, a tale called “One Moment in Time” revealed how time “reset” itself after the couple made that call—and why Peter decided he needed his secret identity back. Kingpin came after several of our hero’s loved ones, so the Webslinger asked Doctor Strange to cast a spell to make everyone forget his secret. Working with Tony Stark and Reed Richards, the Sorcerer Supreme did the deed, with only Peter and MJ escaping its effect.


Captain America

In the late 1980s, John Walker temporarily replaced Steve Rogers as Captain America after the government tried to make Steve part of their political agenda. The new Cap’s tenure proved difficult, and eventually the powers-that-be decided to hand the suit and shield back to his predecessor. In the press conference announcing the return of the original, a member of the militant Watchdogs apparently assassinates Walker—but only “apparently.” The staged shooting allowed the former Cap to put his old life and mistakes behind him and return in a new identity: U.S. Agent.


Wolverine

During the Fall of the Mutants, the X-Men, including Wolverine, gave their lives on television to save the world from a being called The Adversary. The goddess Roma, however, took pity on the mutant heroes, resurrecting and giving them the opportunity to operate in secret. She even made them “invisible” to any sort of surveillance beyond regular eyesight.

While the X-Men moved to Australia and established a secret base, Wolverine had his own agenda—and storylines—going on in his solo title. Logan established a new identity, Patch, on the island of Madripoor, where he engaged in an underworld battle with the local crime lords. The eye patch kept his resurrection somehow “secret,” despite the iconic claws and hairdo.


Iron Man

Back in 1998, Captain America and Iron Man teamed up in the aptly titled IRON MAN/CAPTAIN AMERICA ‘98 ANNUAL. In the story, Tony Stark and Steve Rogers battled A.I.M. and M.O.D.O.K., and we learned in a flashback that the duo also took on Mentallo, who had created a way to control the minds of everyone on Earth. Iron Man not only took out the telepathic villain, but also used his technology to make everyone forget his secret identity. Years later, it wouldn’t matter, as Tony revealed his name and face to the entire world again anyway.


Thor

To teach his son humility, Odin stripped Thor of his memories as a god and sent him to Earth as Donald Blake, a mortal medical student with an injured leg. Eventually Blake discovered his true origin, and Thor spent time on Earth not only in his godly, heroic identity, but also as the good doctor. Eventually the Thunder God gave up his ability to turn into his human alter ego.

Years later, when Thor decided he wanted a life on Earth again, he didn’t ask Odin for another spell. Instead, he turned to Nick Fury, who created a new civilian identity for him: Sigurd Jarlson. Transforming into Jarlson didn’t require Thor striking his hammer on stone; it only needed civilian clothing and, of all things, a pair of glasses—who would use a pair of glasses to try and hide their true identity?

The saga of Matt Murdock’s secret identity continues in DAREDEVIL #19, on sale this week, and concludes in issue #20, available May 17, both from Charles Soule and Ron Garney!

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Charles Soule guides the Man Without Fear through the legal system!

It may be a cliché that not all heroes wear capes, but can super heroes still be champions for good when they’re not running around in costume saving the day? That’s exactly what Matt Murdock seeks to prove in the upcoming “Supreme” arc of DAREDEVIL from writer Charles Soule. He’s foregoing the usual red, skin tight number in favor of a simple suit and tie as part of a plan to take care of crime in New York with the legitimate fists of the legal system.

However, Matt’s tour de force of lawyerly prowess could prove to be the undoing of not only the bad guys, but all of New York’s vigilantes as well. Even his recently recovered secret identity stands at stake in this story, which promises to be an explosive courtroom drama chock full of surprises, exciting cameos, and homages to classic sitcom tropes.

Since Charles practices as an attorney, we asked him to make a few opening statements on behalf of “Supreme.” He’s far from resting his case, your honor. In fact, it’s just waking up.

Marvel.com: In this story arc, Matt has a plan to take care of crime in Manhattan via the legal system as opposed to his vigilante work as Daredevil. As a practicing lawyer and fellow Columbia Law graduate, were the specifics for this arc drawn from your own experiences as an attorney? If so, can you go into detail about your inspirations without breaching attorney-client privilege?

Charles Soule: I’ve been building to this story since I first started thinking about my run [on DAREDEVIL]. This has been what it’s all been about, from the start. This is why Matt joined the DA’s office, it’s what he decided to do with his secret identity, all of it. He has a plan based on a particular area of criminal law that I came up with when I was doing my initial research, talking to people who’ve worked in the Manhattan DA’s office, etc. The funny thing—while I am a practicing attorney, I don’t work in this particular area, and so I am sure I’m screwing stuff up as far as the specifics. That’s okay, though, I have a wonderful crutch to rely on for that stuff: “Law is a little different in the Marvel Universe.”

Marvel.com: Are there any holdover repercussions from the “Purple” arc that centers around Matt trying to hold onto his secret identity?

Charles Soule: The whole “Supreme” arc is all about it. We learned in “Purple” what Matt did to put his identity as Daredevil back in the bottle, and in “Supreme” all of that is put at risk. We understand the stakes.

Marvel.com: What is the climate like in New York City to allow Matt to take this route rather than just beat the snot out of bad guys as Daredevil?

Charles Soule: Beating up bad guys is great, but it’s a one-at-a-time sort of solution. Every once in a while maybe you can take down a big player like an Owl or even a Kingpin, but just because you beat someone up doesn’t mean they will actually get convicted of a crime and go to prison. Matt’s plan here is designed to bring his vigilante work and his legal work closer together—and not just for him, but for everyone like him. The Spider-Mans, the Blindspots, the Ms. Marvels— everyone with a secret identity working in New York as a vigilante could be affected by what he’s doing.



Marvel.com:  Moreover, how does he feel about the possibility that the city may not need the hero after this case is over?

Charles Soule: He’s not worried about that at all. New York will always need heroes.

Marvel.com:  The criminal underworld can’t be happy about this trial. What action will they be taking to stop Matt?

Charles Soule: Stay tuned. That’s a huge part of the story. We’ll see some great bad guy appearances here, including the return of a fun Z-lister from the 90s, another long-demanded character from my SHE-HULK run with Javier Pulido, and another massive Daredevil bad guy I haven’t used yet.

Marvel.com: The irony of Daredevil needing to take the stand and testify is a bit of a two-dates-to-the-prom—or courtroom in this case—situation for Matt. How will he go about handling that particular dilemma?

Charles Soule: That’s issue #22—and man, it’s fun to write that stuff. Classic silly sitcom with super heroes material.

Marvel.com: Luke Cage and Echo will be guest starring in this arc. What will their roles be in this case? Will they be taking to the stand and should we prepare for any other cameos?

Charles Soule: They show up early, but we shift away from them to allow for some other folks to appear. I’m trying to get in a bunch of cool cameos here; don’t want to spoil it, but I had Daredevil appear in a big three-part story in my SHE-HULK run. It might be time to return that favor…

Charles Soule kicks off “Supreme” in DAREDEVIL #21, coming this June!

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Charles Soule examines what has dissolved the bond between Matt Murdock and Foggy Nelson!

Super heroes need friends, it’s as simple as that. Fighting for ideals is nice, but fighting for those you care about is better. You can beat up as many villains as you like, expose their crimes and put them in jail, but you need someone there at the end of the day who will kick back with you at Josie’s for a couple of pints.

At the moment, the friendship of Matt Murdock and Foggy Nelson lies on the rocks in the current “Purple” story arc for DAREDEVIL written by Charles Soule with art from Ron Garney. Yes, Matt has his secret identity back, but how did he achieve such a feat and will it prove worth it if his once best friend Foggy doesn’t have his back? As the arbitrator between the two parties, Charles gave us his hot take on the frail friendship and the delicate secrets threatening to tear it apart forever.

Marvel.com: We’re currently in the middle of the four-part “Purple” arc where we’re dealing with the idea of Matt Murdock restoring his secret identity and the return of a classic Marvel villain in Zebediah Killgrave aka Purple Man. And that’s not even mentioning the bounty on Daredevil’s head in the “Seventh Day” arc. With all this going on, what are the ripple effects being felt on Matt and Foggy’s friendship?

Charles Soule: The “Purple” arc is designed to pull back the curtain on why Matt’s made a lot of his recent choices; not only does it explain how he got his secret identity back, but it tells you what he decided to do with it. From Murdock’s perspective, a secret identity is a tool: it’s the first time he’s been able to work full on as an attorney in a while without people knowing that he’s also Daredevil—years, really—and he’s going to use that to its fullest extent. Unfortunately, Matt’s choices also caused him and Foggy Nelson to go “on a break”—they’ve interacted a bit in the 20 or so issues of my run so far, but it hasn’t been the full-on friendship they’re known for. Things seem very strained, very tense. It’s a shame!

Marvel.com: In anticipation of issue #19 coming April 19, can you give any hints as to what caused a rift between Matt and his best friend?

Charles Soule: Well, the real explanation comes in issue #20, but honestly, the pieces have been there since issue #1. Matt has his secret ID back and Foggy doesn’t like something about the way it happened, or what Matt’s decided to do since he got it back. Foggy’s the only person in the world who knows the truth, and he doesn’t know that he’s too excited about carrying that burden. But more to come on that…

Marvel.com: Are they coming at it from a lawyerly perspective or is emotion clouding their otherwise rational minds?

Charles Soule: This one’s 100% emotion, despite what they tell themselves. Matt Murdock is a big rationalizer; after all, the fact that he’s Daredevil at all requires being able to jump through some pretty big moral hoops, especially while being a lawyer at the same time. As an attorney myself, that was always one of the things I found most interesting about Daredevil as a character. A lawyer really can’t do what Daredevil does, not ethically—and Matt certainly knows that—but he does it anyway, because he’s compelled to. That’s great stuff.

Marvel.com: There’s no doubt that these are trying times for both Matt Murdock and his vigilante persona. It sure would help to have a friend around, but he’s out of luck. How is Matt handling things without this extra support and comfort from Foggy? In other words, what does it mean to be strained?

Charles Soule: I think we’ve seen it all through the run so far. On the surface, everything seems “fine”—Matt’s being heroic, stopping bad guys, all of that. But if you look a little deeper, the man’s barely holding it together. He can’t do it alone, but he thinks he can—also great for drama. This tension has brought him back to the Catholic Church, though, which was a nice thing to be able to return to the Daredevil mix. I always thought it was interesting that Murdock had a strong religious faith as part of his character, and it’s been a little missing from his portrayals recently. The church isn’t a substitute for a best friend, though.

Marvel.com: What is more important to Matt, saving his secret identity or his friendship?

Charles Soule: I think we’re about to find out…

Get the next hints on Matt’s secret identity and friendship woes when DAREDEVIL #19 by Charles Soule and Ron Garney hits on April 19!

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Take aim at the man who never misses with a look back at his debut against Daredevil!

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.

One of Marvel’s most menacing villains made history this week by headlining his first ever ongoing series. That’s right, with BULLSEYE #1, the man with impeccable aim jumped onto shelves thanks to Ed Brisson, Marv Wolfman, Guillermo Sanna, and Alec Morgan. As Bullseye heads down to South America for some fiendish fun and frolic, let’s look back to his very first appearance back in 1976’s DAREDEVIL #131 by Wolfman, Bob Brown and Klaus Janson.

The initial weapon wielded by the master assassin might strike you as a surprise: Bullseye’s first ever attack comes in the form of a paper airplane thrown perfectly through a high-rise window with a simple message: “Pay me $100,000 or I will kill you!!” The man on the other side of the divide, Mr. Hunnicutt, proves unlucky as he looks up to see the masked killer standing before him. With the unfortunate Hunnicutt having no money on hand, Bullseye picked up a pen from his office set and threw it into the poor guy’s neck! As we learn, the villain never had any intention of actually letting his victim live, instead intending only to bolster his murderous reputation.

Daredevil shows up to investigate and runs into a Daily Bugle reporter named Jake Conover who shares some information on the new assassin that came directly from the seeming psycho’s mouth. Turns out the unnamed man served in Vietnam where he not only relished killing the enemy but also discovered a talent for using throwing weapons. As a signed major league baseball pitcher, he could have returned after the war to that career, but instead moved to Africa where he became a mercenary.

On his way home from meeting with Conover, Daredevil finds himself in the blast zone of a lobbed grenade that sends him tumbling down into an alley where his assailant waits. Bullseye runs, DD giving chase only to wind up in another trap set at a circus!

The tale carries over into DAREDEVIL #132 where the actual big top battle takes place. Thanks to the explosion, the Man Without Fear suffers a series of other injuries that put him off his game. Unimpressed with his opponent’s skills, Bullseye escapes after blasting a pool of water with his special gun’s sonic cartridge.

Far from finished, Bullseye finds another target: a rich couple named Henry and Freda Foster. Using the same gun from before, he shoots a harpoon through the window that staples Henry’s arm to the wall. Doing his usual shtick of demanding money, Bullseye gives the Fosters a day to get the cash but warns them against calling the cops. When Henry does, he gets a sword through the hand.
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At that same moment, Daredevil bursts into the room and takes on Bullseye at full power for the very first time. The assassin attempts to use everything from another pen to an umbrella to take out the hero, but ol’ Horn Head walks away the victor!

Not a fan of being bested, Bullseye continues to appear and becomes one of Daredevil’s most infamous enemies. Not long after this first appearance, he first tries to assassinate Matt Murdock and Foggy Nelson and later kidnaps Matt’s girlfriend the Black Widow. Of course, he’s most well known as the man who murdered not one, but two of Murdock’s loves: Elektra and Karen Page.

Flash Forward

When it comes to deadly dynamos in the Marvel Universe, few have caused as much damage as Bullseye, but even he’s played at being a good guy. In addition to chasing down rogue heroes during Civil War as a member of the Thunderbolts, he also became Norman Osborn’s Hawkeye in the group known as the Dark Avengers. Even when trying to do good things like stopping a malfunctioning Hulkbuster or stopping three guys from attacking a woman, his temper and disregard for innocent civilians usually led to death. In other words, being anything close to a good guy might be the thing that Bullseye couldn’t hit if his life depended on it.

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