A post from my old Marvel blog focusing on the planning of the CIVIL WAR storyline.
One last day of behind-the-scenes at the CIVIL WAR crossover, and then I’ll move onto something else. Today I’ve got a compliation memo that was cobbled together by copying-and-pasting from e-mails and documents written by a number of creators and editors outlining assorted tie-ins, and things they were interested in spinning out of CIVIL WAR. This document is therefore a little bit disjointed, and not all of these ideas made it all the way to the printed page, but this’ll give you some idea as to what people were thinking they wanted to do at a certain point:
CREATORS’ CIVIL WAR CROSSOVER IDEAS:
I think the TBOLTS would be very open and willing to get involved, since all of their identities are public knowledge already, this helps ENHANCE their agenda of becoming publicly accepted heroes.
I would like to see a LARGE ROLE for them in this story, since as a group post #100, they will be a VERY POWERFUL group and ZEMO already has strong ties to the CSA and a healthy disrespect/distrust of the mainstream superheroes with a strong desire to manipulate them and also make them look bad for his own benefit.
I would like to do a CDP crossover as well, with CABLE agreeing with CAP and seeing this as a road to ruin, as it were, a precursor to the kind of demagogue state he grew up in (to the point where he can offer CAP and his SECRET AVENGERS a safehaven on PROVIDENCE or the Central European country formerly run by FLAG SMASHER that CABLE will be “President” of by this point…
Meanwhile, DP is being recruited as a HERO HUNTER, so he LIKES the idea of finally getting some respect and some cash for the chance to kick some hero ass.
Now all I need to do is figure out which issues this would be…
I’d like the third arc (assuming there is one, it would be issues 7, 8, 9) to be a CIVIL WAR tie-in.
I’d imagine that Carol Danvers supports the whole thing not just because she’s ex-Air Force and she’s used to taking orders, but because her own identity has been public for so long that she doesn’t entirely see the need for secret identities.
It might be fun to have Jessica Jones to have the exact opposite opinion, causing their friendship to become strained.
One of the things I’ve been planning with the Sarah Day publicist character is to reveal that STUFF THAT DIDN’T QUITE HAPPEN, BUT MIGHT REVEAL SOME STUFF THAT STILL MAY, EXCISED.
I would also like to do something with Captain Marvel since we’re bringing him back. But I know absolutely nothing about that project at the moment. (This is the part where someone tells me Carol is going to be the new Captain Marvel, isn’t it? Okay, maybe not, but that outline doc is way vague in the Captain Marvel department and a guy’s mind can wander.)
CIVIL WAR: ROUND UP
This idea might be too close to THE AGENCY, but I like the idea of an issue dedicated to a team of guys (maybe S.H.I.E.L.D. spec ops, maybe Silver Sable and the Wild Pack, maybe just H.A.M.M.E.R. guys trained for the job) who have the job of rounding up non-compliers.
As the story progresses, the team is sent to take down a hero (since I don’t know details of who’s available here, I’m staying generic) that saved one of the team members lives in the past.
This team member realizes he can’t go through with arresting the person who saved his life, so he turns on his teammates, joining forces with the very heroes he is supposed to be rounding up.
CIVIL WAR: MAN ON THE STREET
Three or four stories from both sides of the registration act argument, as viewed by the Average Joe in the Marvel Universe. Possibly presented as an episode of a television newsmagazine or maybe Ben Urich conducting interviews for a book he is going to write on the events.
Whoever the host/writer character is, they are our anchor in the story. They are undecided themselves and they’re trying to use this story they are doing to figure out what the hell is going on in the world around them. This seems like a great way to get inside the head of the Marvel Universe and show what’s going on.
Some bits that popped into my head thinking about this:
• “See, I’m old enough to remember a world without people swinging over head. A world where streets didn’t explode just because somebody whose momma didn’t love ’em enough has up and decided to kill innocent people. I remember when it was safe to walk down the street. When it was safe to live in New York City.”
• “The first time I saw somebody flying around, well, I think I was eight and I just assumed everybody learned to fly the same as they learned to walk or drive a car. I still love seeing people fly.”
• “Where we gonna be if we make these guys tells us all who they is? Huh? Where we gonna be? Up the creek without a paddle is where. I swear to you, the only reason this city is still standin is cause a these guys. You go after them, make em fill out all kindsa paper work like they did somethin wrong? Why would they do that? They’ll just quit. They’ll just go home and quit. The whole city’s gonna fall apart.”
• “My wife… she doesn’t know. About me, I mean. I never… I never told her I had super strength or super speed. I wasn’t going to put on tights and risk my life… Not after all those years of med school. So, for twelve years we’ve been married and I haven’t told her, because it isn’t something I ever even think about. Sometimes I run around the globe once, just real quick, just to make sure I didn’t dream that I could do it. And now? Now the government is going to come in here and say I have to register because some accident two decades ago gave me powers I never even use? Sure, I could blow it off. I could keep it a secret. But what happens when we’re in a car wreck and the EMTs realize there’s something odd with my body? You heard what kinds of fines they’re talking about. And jail time. Jail time! Good lord…”
BLACK PANTHER #18 (July)
The wedding. Covered live by BET. Stan, Jack, Don, Priest, myself, Axel, Joe…all drawn in, of course. All the monarchs are there, from Black Bolt to Captain Britain to Prince Namor to Dr. Doom. And of course, all the remaining X-Men. And the FF and Avengers. Cap and Iron Man show up. Tension.
Super-villian attack on the whole shebang makes everyone work well together, but in the end, it’s a house divided back in America, but love in Wakanda. T’Challa opens his doors to super powered friends who want to leave America. Most of the black superheroes, like Luke Cage, think this is a great idea. You can see this might be the moment a black Avengers team is born. [I LIKE THE IDEA OF TEEING UP A BLACK SUPER HERO TEAM, BUT I’M CONCERNED ABOUT CREATING THE IMPRESSION THAT THEY WOULD DO SO BY FORSAKING AMERICA. — AXEL] This makes Wakanda even more of a threat in US State Department eyes. They are harboring terrorists….including, they suspect, public enemy number one…Captain America.
Here’s how I see my tie-ins breaking down:
1) AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: ASM #532 begins a new arc in May. Given JMS’s plans to deepen the relationship between Tony Stark and Peter Parker, I figure this is the Spider-Man title that should explicitly tie-in with the event. Ideally, we’d do that starting in May and run as long as JMS has got a story in him. Given Spidey’s prominence in the Marvel Universe and (I hope) his key role in MCW, I figure we’ll have enough meat for a good story.
Issue count: Several issues. Maybe up to 7 months.
2) WOLVERINE: In May, Marc Guggenheim and Humberto Ramos take of the monthly title. I figure we’d explicitly tie in with MCW by no later than July. Marc, who’s signed on to write 6 issues of the title, understands that the war doesn’t really begin in earnest until July, so he’s more than happy to write a foreground story in May and June that’s set against the backdrop of the emerging war, and then really tie in with the June issue (WOLVERINE #44).
Issue count: 3-4 issues.
3) PUNISHER (MARVEL KNIGHTS): I would like to do a dedicated one-shot or 3- to 4-issue limited series that starts in August or September (the Punisher first appears in the CIVIL WAR #4, in stores in August). I figure there’s got to be a story in Frank Castle pursuing a particularly heinous group of teched-up super-villains. Maybe we could even have a dramatic moment where the Punisher confronts Tony Stark about Tony’s Faustian Pact? One thing that will be crucial to the success of this limited series will be a head count. I’m going to need permission to kill some bad guys — at least one big one, and a bunch of smaller ones.
Issue count: Dedicated one-shot or a 3- to 4-issue limited series.
4) BLACK PANTHER: I would like to tie-in in June, with T’Challa returning to Wakanda, aware of the war that’s started in the U.S., and July, the month of the Wedding. In that month, of course, the combatants will form an uneasy truce to attend the wedding. I can provide you with more info as I get it.
Issue count: 1-2 issues.
Also, Warren is going to talk with Brubaker about Daredevil. Given DD’s in jail in the regular monthly, we’ll probably avoid an explicit tie-in there. We could do a dedicated limited series, though.
Civil War: Villain Registration
Someone is registering the villains in Jail (This could lead to Tony’s idea)
Someone is hunting them down and registering them before the commit crimes (new hero)
Here’s a short list of MCW-related projects we’re considering to develop.
• SENTINEL SQUAD: WAR MACHINES (one-shot). The new breed of Sentinels has been jointly called upon by The O*N*E and H.A.M.M.E.R. to enforce the SHRA and round up those who resist. Obviously with Rhodey and other “good guys” as the pilots, conflict ensues as some of them question the ethics of their orders.
• MARVEL CIVIL WAR: X-MEN. (LS) What was originally David Hine’s pitch for THE 198 sequel now becomes this mini series. With the X-Men essentially being Switzerland and staying neutral, certain rogue mutant factions (Cable, X-Force and The 198) refuse to sit back and watch the Super Hero Registration Act evolve into the Mutant Registration Act. They become pro-active, and take matters into their own hands to prevent this eventuality.
• BISHOP: LONE SOLDIER (one shot). The one lone X-Man to actively take a stance on one side of the Marvel Civil War. There’s a story here somewhere.
• CLOAK & DAGGER (ongoing). Along the lines of Ant-Man, Champions, etc., here is the time and place for us relaunch this duo. This time around, in a world of superhuman secrecy, they will be forced to finally assume the roles of their namesakes.
• STORM & BLACK PANTHER/WAKANDA…not sure what this is, but envision some type of Storm project.
• MCW: THE HUNT FOR SPIDER-MAN (LS) . So, let me get this straight. Super-powered beings must register themselves with the U.S. Government. Correct. Some are resisting registration. Correct. These are figures who many people call “heroes.” Captain America, Invisible Woman…Spider-Man even. Correct. And you need men and women with powers to help track them down. Registered people with super powers. Even people registered through prison. Correct. And you will fund the…the “hunt” for lack of a better word. Correct. And it will be 100% legal. That is all correct. Are you interested Mr. Osborn? Hmmm… Yes. I think I am. …………. Norman Osborn is tagged and freed to hunt down un-registered super humans. With a group of fellow convicts he goes in pursuit of Spider-Man. What he doesn’t tell the government is that he already knows that Spider-Man is Peter Parker. He not only tries to hunt Spider-Man down, but to mentally torture him. How painful would it be that Norman, who has caused him so many problems, can openly and legally hunt Peter.
After a lot of research and thought.
During the Civil War, instead of running my own Secret Avengers story or trying to tie into Mark or try to keep a facade up untill the post Civil War Avengers plans…, I am going to do a story arc called. the Secret History of the Marvel Universe. It will fill in all the Illuminati stuff I can’t get into the Special and it will tie together all the events of Marvel past into Civil War.
For the last few months I’ve been talking with a few freelancers about rebooting The Champions, so if there’s a way to propel them out of MCW – as one of the teams set up by Mark – this might be a good opportunity to launch the book. Or launch a limited that can lead into the book, etc.
Obviously this is all contingent on Mark’s plans, but this is a team I’ve talked about with Axel for a bit.
STUFF TO SPIN OUT:
SECRET AVENGERS (or AVENGERS ILLUMINATI?)
Something with HAMMER?
Reggie’s Wakandan Super-Team?
CLOAK & DAGGER