ByErik Copper, writer at

I first got into comics in the May of 2011, just over 4 years ago.

My first foray into what would become my obsession started on Free Comic Book Day 2011, where I picked up the issue of Amazing Spider-Man that Marvel had offered up. I read it on the car-ride home, and remember being awed by the storytelling. I had never really held a comic before, let along read one, and I was easy to entertain.

That issue featured a Spider-Man without his spider-sense undergoing training with Shang Chi to develop something that would make up for the loss of his early warning system. That something turned out to be the hilariously named martial arts style "Spider-Fu". This comic was a prelude to the coming event that summer (Spider-Island) so I feel I was pretty lucky at finding a good place to start.

That was around Amazing Spider-Man #666, and I've read every issue of it since. I believe the number of comics I've acquired since 2011 is now at over 450, with most of those being Spider-Man stories.

But this whole thing isn't about Spider-Man. Sure, the wall-crawler might feature from time to time, but this series of articles is about something much bigger.

What exactly? Let me tell you.

In 2012, Marvel ran an event called Avengers vs X-Men that pitted hero against hero. After the event, Marvel ended a lot of titles, rebooted others, and created some new titles altogether. This soft-reboot of sorts was branded as Marvel NOW! and was really the start of what we're currently facing three years later, in present day.

It was the start of Secret Wars.

What I'll attempt to do in these articles is get fill people in on the happenings of the Marvel Comics Universe from the start of key-titles from Marvel NOW! to the end of Secret Wars and the current Marvel Universe as we know it.

I've pledged to read everything coming out of Secret Wars, and while I'm not quite caught up yet (I'm almost done with Time Runs Out), I'm far enough in that I know what's going on.

I'll be breaking these articles into parts. Each part will cover the universe from Marvel NOW! to where we are today.

Part 1: The Origin Story
Part 2: It All Starts NOW!
Part 3: Time Runs Out
Part 4: Secret Wars
Part 5: Secret Wars Tie-Ins
Part 6: The End

I'll be writing these over time as more issues come out, and I get caught up to where we are.

Marvel is crafting a story that we won't soon forget. If you don't wanna miss it, I'd keep an eye our for the next few articles. It's sure to be a wild ride...

And I don't want to ride it alone.

~Erik Copper


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