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tglancy

Marvel Comics Discussion Thread

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Marvel does this every couple of years. They get a ton of good will for releasing new titles that try something new/star POC characters/are written by exciting new writers and artists. Then they cancel then a year later to outrage only to repeat the cycle later. Meanwhile, Avengers comes out 4 times a month.

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It came out of nowhere. They just returned to original numbering less than six months ago, so everyone's like "Eh...??"

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I recently picked up the first three volumes of the Thunderbolts. I read the first few issues way back in 1997, but didn't follow it after that. The third volume of the trade features a crossover with the Avengers, and throughout the crossover Iron Man is in his classic red and gold armor from the 1970's and 1980's. I had no idea why he was not in any of his more recent armors, and instead was in the very outdated (by Marvel standards) armor.

This bugged me, so I got online and did some research. He went back to an older armor because his newest armor had become sentient. So here's the point. Include a recap box, especially in a trade paperback.

"Hey true believers! Iron Man is in his classic armor because his new armor became sentient and tried to kill him. He downgraded to an armor with a less sophisticated operating system so that does not happen again."

There. That was easy. Then, when someone is reading your collection 18 years later, they are not completely confused and have to go spend an hour on Google trying to figure out what is going on. Or, of someone only reads the Thunderbolts in 2000, they won't be completely confused either.

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What's funny is, as I was reading the opening of your post, I was thinking, Oh yeah! That was when his armor came to life and tried to kill him. Not sure how or why I remembered that. If I recall, I only read two or three issues of that Iron Man run.

Your suggestion would be an interesting practice, especially with older collections. It's strange to think, but comic book writing has changed so much in the last 20 years. Even in 1998 we weren't in the practice of writing-for-the-trade, so some of those older collections are going to be confusing without a little backstory.

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20 hours ago, The Master said:

What's funny is, as I was reading the opening of your post, I was thinking, Oh yeah! That was when his armor came to life and tried to kill him. Not sure how or why I remembered that.

When  I was looking it up, I remembered reading about that story back in the day. I either didn't know that it made him switch back to the classic red and gold or I didn't remember that aspect of it.

There are also two Hank Pyms in that story, because his split personality manifested itself as an entirely new body. I had to Google that one too. That I did not remember at all.

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The Birth of Venom trade had text pages to describe some of the events in-between major issues, plus panels from small stories that have some relevance. I'm trying to recall other books that have this. It's really useful though.

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