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Comic Countdown #26: Marvel Reboot

Posted on July 1, 2012 AT 08:23pm

It’s time for the Comic Countdown, where comic book topics are presented in list form. In this, the twenty-sixth edition of the countdown, the subject of Marvel doing a reboot is discussed. The announcement by Marvel, which is likely to be discussed at length at San Diego Comic-Con, was about the Marvel Universe changing some time after the conclusion of Avengers Vs. X-Men, which is about halfway through its run. This has been talked about before, but the rumors are swirling about whether this announcement will mean that Marvel will finally go the route of Top Cow Productions and, more notably, DC Comics and give their whole universe a full makeover. This edition of the countdown will cover ten reasons why this needs to happen. On with the list!

#10: Enough Is Enough

At this point in Marvel’s history, change is needed. There has been so little in the realm of innovation in recent years that things have begun to get stale. Very few new characters, four of every five new titles (a generalization, but pretty close) have the words “X-Men” or “Avengers” in the title, and the same plots are popping up every year or so, including very similar events. With the mediocre Avengers Vs. X-Men event, it’s time to do something creative. Starting fresh seems like a good place to start.

#9: Fresh Faces

It was brought up in the last number, but aside from Deadpool and the Thunderbolts (who became the ‘Dark Avengers’), there hasn’t been much in the new character department in Marvel over the years. Starting continuities over would solves this issue, as even the most popular characters would be ‘new’, but still be recognizable. It’s either that or push for a lot of new characters in an already crowded universe, which seems less likely.

#8: Fuchsia Hulk

No, there isn’t a Fuchsia Hulk, at least not yet. But having several Hulk characters proves the point that Marvel has issues in the innovation department. Instead of coming up with someone new, they take a character and turn them into another Hulk, albeit a different color. Soon enough, if things stay this way, there will be some ridiculously colored Hulk, and that needs to be avoided at all costs.

#7: Leading Ladies (Or Lack Thereof)

Think about it. How many female heroes are given their own books in the Marvel Universe? There’s Captain (formerly Ms.) Marvel, the occasional She-Hulk book, and that’s about it (there are likely more, but few of note). Rebooting the universe could give ample opportunity to get some more leading ladies on board, especially some of the more popular characters such as She-Hulk, Scarlet Witch, Black Widow and Storm.

#6: Tie-Ins

The Avengers film was a massive success, and imagine how many films could be done without several universes full of the same people cluttering everything up? A Spider-Man film that focuses only on one Spidey story, an X-Men origins story where they use the ACTUAL original X-Men, a Fantastic Four film that doesn’t suck. Rebooted origins allow for new origin film, which, given the popularity of some of these characters, can make some great films. And with only one continuity to follow, there’s a lesser chance that it will all get lost in translation (somehow, it’ll happen, but at least the chances will be lowered).

#5: Character Accuracy

Peter Parker is Spider-Man, except where he’s not. Steve Rogers is Captain America, except for that one period before the Captain America movie when he wasn’t. There have been half a dozen Captain Marvels. Getting the picture? With a full reboot, everyone could be everyone they’re meant to be again, without these lapses in time where they’re, for whatever reason, not who they’re supposed to be. This will cut down on a ton of confusion.

#4: Building Relationships

Who remembers when Iron Man and Captain America met? Or when Wolverine joined the X-Men? Unless you were born in the early days of Marvel lore, the likelihood isn’t high. Re-introducing these relationships and how they developed could bring in a whole new fan base. Those who know the beginnings of some of the most important friendships (or rivalries) in Marvel history. When fans know where things started, they’re usually more invested in how they progress.

#3: Cleaning Up The Universe

Things have gotten a bit confusing, with the Ultimates Universe, the common universe, several alternate realities and a few thousand versions of Earth. When DC cleaned up their three timelines, things ran smoother, the books got better, and the fans, more or less, loved the end result. With Marvel’s popularity even higher that that of their rivals, imagine what they could do with the most popular universe in the comic book industry.

#2: More Fans, More Content

Most fans have grown up knowing who the major characters of Marvel are. But they haven’t seen them from the start, or even from the middle, in some aspects. With several decades of continuity, Marvel’s origins and their characters back-story has gotten incredible confusing for new readers, and with a full reboot, new fans could see what all the fuss was about when these books first arrived. Imagine seeing through the eyes of fans in the seventies, seeing how incredible the X-Men were, and how they spoke to a generation. Or how Peter Parker represented the youth at a time they needed a role model? These issues are still around, and fans need to see someone from their beginnings, to see how they made it work, and be inspired by it. Reading Spider-Man #675 isn’t going to have the same impact as Spider-Man #1.

#1: The Finality Of Death

With a full reboot, they can finally get this aspect right. Bucky Barnes, Jean Grey, and countless others have died so many times that it’s meaningless. Death in the Marvel Universe is treated more like a cruise to Latveria for two weeks than it is a final blow to an icon (not pleasant, but can be tolerated for a short time).  A full reboot means they can kill characters all over again after awhile, and maybe this time, they’ll survive, or stay dead.

That’s it for this weeks countdown, feel free to leave a question or comment if there is one. See everyone next week!

Russ Pirozek, known as "Noobcrawler" to some, is a gamer and comic book fan who sometimes gets around to writing for DigitalNoob.com. He's also awesome. If someone looked up "awesome" in the dictionary, his picture wouldn't be there, but that's because he's too busy being awesome to pose for a photo.

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