2016 was a weird year in Marvel Comics. Doctor Doom became a hero, Peter Parker is now an international hero (and friends with Deadpool), and Cable joined the Avengers!
How do you follow up a year of comic books where Dr. Doom and Tony Stark worked together to defeat an enemy and Clint Barton kills Bruce Banner, who was later resurrected by the Hand? It's Marvel, so I'm sure they will find a way to not only top their previous year, but also shake things up as well. In the meantime, I'd like to share some predictions and thoughts on what Marvel has in store for 2017.
Embracing The New School
I cannot talk enough about how great of a job Marvel Comics has done the last few years integrating there younger characters into the Marvel Universe and making them star for the future. X23's 'All New Wolverine' has been great, Riri Williams is looking like she could possibly be a star and a great heir while Iron Man is gone, and the direction of the original X-Men team has continued to be fun and interesting. But the biggest thing that I have taken is that Sam Alexander (Nova), Miles Morales (Spider-Man), and Kamala Khan (Ms. Marvel) are the future of Marvel Comics.
When they first joined Tony Stark's Avengers after Secret War, they came together in hopes of following in the footsteps of their predecessors. During the events of Civil War 2, they realized that their mentors didn't always have the people's best interest in mind and could be selfish. During their time with the Avengers and during Tony Stark and Carol Danvers fight during Civil War, they remained close and the adversity made them grow closer together. After Civil War 2, they realized it was time for them to move on and become heroes in a way that fit them.
- Prediction: Establish themselves as legit heroes
Look for them to establish themselves as the new trio of the future. Three characters with very different powers, backgrounds, and personalities that could one day live up to the hype of Steve Rogers, Thor, and Tony Stark. They are the present as well as the future. Don't be shocked if Riri Williams joins their group once Tony Stark comes back. She is the genius that their team needs.
I will be the first to admit that I am not a big fan of Carol Danvers. Mostly because a lot of writers never truly knew how to write her. She is easily one of the most powerful characters in comics and that is on top of her years of military and superhero experience. She once absorbed the power of a nuclear bomb and used it to knock out Sentry. Fast forward to her on in Civil War 2 where she's become a completely new and amazingly character with a mean streak. She has finally become her own character and a badass one at that.
- Prediction: 2017 Character of the Year
She will no longer be held back with Tony Stark or Captain America second guessing her actions as a leader. She is the leader of a team and she is finally going to show the world how great she is. With the events of Civil War 2 and the backing of the U.S. Government it will be interesting to see where they take Captain Marvel next. I expect her to have a great year.
Marvel's newest event is called Monsters Unleashed! and is exactly what you think it is. Marvel Superheroes fighting giant monsters all over the world. Marvel has gone from crossover events coming once every few years to once a year, to sometimes twice a year. While that seems like a lot, I have high hopes for this series.
- Prediction: This will be fun
Most Marvel Comics events have some deeper meaning or lessons to be learned. I doubt this will be one of those crossover events. This is going to be a series where we get the comic book version of a bad fun movie. This series is going to be full of hard hitting fights and tons of property damage.
Don't call her She-Hulk anymore. She's now just Hulk. And just like her cousin, the madder she gets, the stronger she gets. Jennifer Walters has had a few ongoing series over the last couple of decades and they have all been met with mixed reviews. The one thing she has never really shown is her true power on a consistent basis. Sure, every so often she will go full on Hulk and beat some people down, but she prefers the idea of being the smart, sassy lawyer. But we are finally going to see what people seem to forget; she's not just a hero. She's a ****ing HULK!
- Prediction: Movie or TV project
Jennifer Walters run is going to be so good that she is going to finally get the nod for a Netflix series or a part in an Avengers movie in the future and it is been long overdue. Especially since she is one of the few female characters in comics that have both the power and brains to take on anyone. She is going to surprise a LOT of people this year. I feel bad for Clint once she finds him.
Mutants, Mutants, and MORE Mutants
Just when you thought that Marvel was getting rid of the mutants, they come out with a ton of new mutant titles. X-Men Blue, X-Men Gold, Generation X, Jean Grey and Iceman are getting their own series, Weapon-X, and X-Cable. It's a relief to know that despite Marvel not having the movie rights to X-Men characters, that they will continue to keep making comic books. Kitty Pryde will finally be leading a team (Gold Team), Old Man Logan is still going to have his book (which has been constantly phenomenal), Jubilee will be back in an ongoing series, and Cable will do what he does and will more than likely be trying to prevent his apocalyptic future. Considering how important the X-Men have been to comics in general, I am extremely happy with this news and look forward to see what they have in store coming up.
- Prediction: No. More. Rumors.
We will finally stop hearing rumors about the mutants being replaced by the Inhumans and get back to when the mutants are once again the premier hero team. The Avengers may be Earth's Mightiest Heroes and the Inhumans may be Marvel's new pet project, but the X-Men have always been the team that everyone loves more than others.
Spider-Man has been on a bit of winning streak ever since he regained his body back from Doctor Octopus. He owns his own company, he has the Prowler dressing as his body guard, Spider-Man to throw off his enemies, he's rich, famous, and an international hero. He's the new Tony Stark. He even has gadgets and cool stuff in his costume just like Iron Man. But let's be honest, this is not the Spider-Man we love.
- Prediction: Back To Normal
There is one thing that is consistant with Peter Parker and that is the Parker Luck. At some point Peter Parker is going to be slapped back to reality. He will once again be struggling for money, a menace in the eyes of the public, and more than likely be back with Mary Jane Watson. Ok, the last one is just a hope. It just seems weird that they are not together.
What are you looking forward to in comics this year? Let me know in the comments below.