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Hype's pouring in, apparently it ties into Avengers: Dissasembled, here's the word from Newsarama....

 

Tom Brevoort on House of M

 

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After a couple of months of buzz and speculation, Marvel’s House of M begins in June. The eight issue miniseries, which ties in to the events of last fall’s “Avengers: Disassembled” storyline is epic in scope, combining the X-Men and the Avengers in a battle that spans the entirety of the Marvel Universe in order to stop the Scarlet Witch from reshaping reality to her whim.

 

While Brian Bendis is writing the core miniseries (illustrated by Olivier Coipel and Tim Townsend), editing and coordinating the storyline, which touches upon nearly every hero in the Marvel Universe falls to Tom Brevoort. We caught up with him for a look at the storyline, and the effects it will have in the months to come.

 

Wizard #162 previewed issue #1 of the miniseries, showing the X-Men joining the Avengers in the new Avengers Tower to, as Professor Xavier said, “to decide the fate of Wanda Maximoff” i.e., the Scarlet Witch.

 

Wanda, as it was revealed in the final issue of the series-ending “Avengers Disassembled” arc, was responsible for the horrific events that happened to the team, gutting it, killing a handful of members, and in the end, causing its founders to officially dissolve it. When her puppetmastering was finally revealed, Wanda’s father, Magneto, arrived, and took her to Genosha, a haven for mutants, where he was working with Professor X (as shown in Excalibur).

 

As House of M begins, Xavier realizes that he can no longer control Wanda – and something needs to be done, hence the meeting called between her friends and family.

 

“Wanda’s nuts and she’s in possession of a power that can literally change the nature of reality,” Brevoort said. “It’s a dangerous combination, one that strips the bedrock right out from underneath what you and these characters think they know. There’s a school of thought in some religious circles that God is insane. If the Avengers and the X-Men were to do nothing, that would certainly be the case here.”

 

Contrary to appearances, House of M was not developed in tandem with Avengers: Disassembled, Brevoort explained. “The core idea of House of M came at an editorial retreat while we were in the midst of Disassembled. We knew more or less where the pieces were going to end up, and so it became obvious that there was an opportunity for a follow-up. The full scale of that follow-up became apparent as we talked about it.

 

“In short, Disassembled was Disassembled, and the ending was what was intended from the very start. But, as has been pointed out, that ending suggested a sequel of some sort—the final shape of it is far larger than where we started out.”

 

As with this kind of event storyline, Brevoort knows the preconceived notion of ‘in eight months, everything will be back to normal, and the storyline won’t matter in the long run.’ It happened years ago when Kulan Gath (a Robert E. Howard character) transformed Manhattan into a Hyborian-era sorcery-laden dark age in Uncanny X-Men, and to a similar extent, the entire Age of Apocalypse. Drama without consequences can ring hollow, although Brevoort has a different take.

 

“I think the drama only rang hollow after the fact—during both of those stories, readers were actively engaged in what was going on, and wanted to know where things were going to end up when all was said and done,” the editor said. “That said, House of M shares some similarities with those earlier stories, but is not the same.”

 

In short, it’s not a “What If?” story.

 

“It’s a ‘What Is’ story,” Brevoort continued. “All of the events of House of M are happening to the actual Avengers and the actual X-Men—and the actual Marvel Universe, for that matter. The events of the story will shape the characters and the MU itself for some time to come.”

 

In an interview with Editor in Chief Joe Quesada, Brevoort confessed that he wasn’t one of the early converts for what Bendis was proposing to do in "Avengers Disassembled," but admitted that he doesn’t feel that reluctance with House of M. “I thought—and think—that this story is a natural extension of what we did in Disassembled. It’s a good story that takes full advantage of the larger Marvel Universe.”

 

Structure-wise, Brevoort said that the larger story will be divided into three acts, each of which will be characterized by specific elements, but added that it’s too early to delve into the plot directions of each just yet.

 

As word has begun to leak out…there will other issues of ongoing series connected to House of M. But, as Brevoort explained, series tie-ins to House of M won’t be along the same lines of the "Avengers Disassembled" tie-ins, which, as some fans pointed out, seemed to have less to do with the Disassembled storyline, and more to do with traumatic changes in the lives of the respective characters.

 

“Honestly, some of that was a result of us listening to the fans and the retailers too much, the vocal ones, in terms of what they said they wanted in crossovers,” Brevoort said. “’We don’t want to be forced to buy everything in order to follow this story!’ So we tried to make each of the Disassembled tie-in books totally modular, and that led to some awkward storytelling in places. With House of M, we’re going to follow our own hearts and minds a bit more, and not worry about what the vocal fans are saying beforehand—if Disassembled is any indication, they’ll be saying something else by the time it’s underway. In House of M, we’ve got a whole world to explore, so we’ll be doing some of that exploration elsewhere.”

 

Looking at the scope again, Brevoort said that House of M will share a characteristic with events of old, that is, it will be a platform where new characters will be introduced as they rise to the challenge, and also a place where characters that’ve been out of sight for a time will be able to get back on stage.

 

As for the mastermind behind the story, Brevoort was quick to praise Bendis’ working knowledge of the Marvel Universe. “Brian’s been reading Marvel comics off and on for twenty years; he knows his way around the universe pretty well. And we’ve been keeping in touch with the X-office and its creators along the way, to make sure everything lines up nicely.”

 

And the end result of that lining up – coming in fall of 2005, when the final page of House of M hits? “What we’ll see as a result of the story isn’t so much a tonal shift as a logistical shift - some of the pieces are going to be in very different places when this is all over, and that’s going to affect how all of our various heroes do business in a significant way.

 

“But rest assured - there’ll be a marked difference in the Marvel Universe in the aftermath of House of M—one that’ll propel us directly into the next year’s worth of stories, at the very least.”

 

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For those (read: Silent Bob) who're tryin to piece together who's who in that last image....

 

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1-Falcon

2-She-Hulk

3-Dazzler

4-Havok

5-Yellowjacket

6-Daredevil

7-Storm

8-Dr Strange

9-Wolverine

10-Sentry

11-Gambit

12-Cloak

13-Black Cat

14-Emma Frost

15-Wasp

16-Nightcrawler

17-Cyclops

18-Cage

19-Charles Xavier

20-Shadowcat

21-Capt. America

22-Wonder Man

23-Cannonball

24-White Tiger II

25-Spider-Woman I

26-Beast

27-Bishop

28-Forge

29-Moonknight

30-Mystique

31-Iron Fist

32-Colossus

33-Ms Marvel/Warbird

34-Spider-Man

35-Iron Man

36-Rogue

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  • 2 weeks later...

...not that much interest in this arc yet, eh?

 

This might help...Newsarama talks about the side stories; hopefully more relevant than the odd ones of "Dissasembled".

 

For starters, here's Spidey's new digs! Reminds me of the good ol' Reilly days...

 

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more emphasis on the spider-buttocks...i see quesada got my letter :D :D

 

BREVOORT ON THE HOUSE OF M TIE-INS

 

As announced at WizardWorld LA, the June-debuting House of M will see three spin-off miniseries:

 

Spider-Man: House of M by Mark Waid, Tom Peyer, and Salvador Larocca )five issues).

 

Fantastic Four: House of M by John Layman and Scott Eaton (three issues); and

 

Iron Man: House of M by Greg Pak and Pat Lee (three issues)

 

“We’ll probably also be doing some kind of Secrets of the House of M, which will be the equivalent of a Marvel Handbook, which will be a one-shot,” editor Tom Brevoort told Newsarama. “I’m not exactly sure when that will be scheduled.”

 

In addition to the miniseries, House of M will have several tie-ins to ongoing series: a lead-in in Excalibur #13-#14, and then: Captain America #10, Wolverine #33-35, Black Panther #7, Uncanny X-Men #462-465, New X-Men #16-19, Cable & Deadpool #17, New Thunderbolts #11, Hulk #83-86, Exiles #69-71, The Pulse #10.

 

“These will be the more literal tie-ins,” Brevoort explained. “The spin-off miniseries will be a chance to explore the characters and their respective ‘worlds’ as a result of the changes brought about by House of M proper.”

 

Of the miniseries, Brevoort acknowledged that the creative teams on the series may seem somewhat different than what people may have been expecting.

 

“A lot of it had to do with timing, but we were also looking to get writers on the books that had different voices and styles that what people have been used to hearing or seeing,” Brevoort said. “In the case of Spider-Man: House of M, Mark is writing with Tom, but with Salvador on the art, rather than Mike Wieringo.

 

“The idea behind the art change was that Ringo was coming off of Fantastic Four, and will be doing a new Spider-Man book in October, so we wanted to give him as much lead time with that. Also, we didn’t want to have him leap directly from a monthly series without a break to completely switch characters and direction, when we knew he was going to be starting on that character later this year anyway. Plus, Salvador had been looking to do a Spider-Man project for a while, and Mark had asked for him, and suggested we use him when this was first brought up, so it will be a nice package.

 

“In the case of Iron Man: House of M, with the schedule we’ve been keeping, Adi [Granov] can’t do anything other than the ongoing Iron Man book, and Warren [Ellis] is all over the place with Ultimate Secret and Iron Man, and other work, so we’re were needing to go somewhere else for an Iron Man team as well. Pat Lee was just finishing up X4 and has a style that was suited to what we wanted to do with the series, and Greg Pak was coming off of both Phoenix: Endsong and all of his various projects that nobody got to see that showed he a nice feel for the kind of story we wanted to see told in the miniseries.

 

“With the Fantastic Four, Scott Eaton is working on the FF book that’s going to the public schools later this year, and his work on the characters is really nice. As for the writing side, Stephanie Moore, who’d worked with John Layman directly on the Gambit series and felt that he had the right handle for this kind of thing, because the Fantastic Four in The House of M is a very different unit than what we know and love as a result of some things that I really can’t go into now without spoiling some of the events of House of M proper.”

 

And yes, that was a tease that the world of the FF, not to mention the respective worlds of Iron Man and Spider-Man may not be the ones you know, come House of M. Adding to that speculation, the images Marvel released of both the Hulk and Iron Man from their House of M connected stories – the look different than their current versions.

 

Brevoort wasn’t too quick to give anything up, but he did have a hint. “Well, the wonderful thing about Iron Man is that he can always change his look to appear slightly or seriously different than we think he ‘normally’ looks, and with the Hulk, the only real difference is that he is missing his hair. But, that said, there are substantial changes and transformations that these characters go through as part of the overall House of M story, and those will be reflected in these individual series, and will be dealt with a little more depth in these series than there is in House of M proper.

 

“House of M is such a sweeping story – we cover all bases of the Marvel Universe – by issue #2 and #3, we’ve seen dozens, maybe hundreds of characters. Issue #2 is almost a travelogue as we go from place to place to see what is going on with the characters as they find themselves in this new context.

 

“But House of M is a linear story, so there’s not as much room as we might like to look at the worlds of the particular heroes in as much detail as we wanted, so we’re gong into these side-projects with other writers who are connecting with these characters to tell the stories outside of their individual books.”

 

And of course, the all-important question – yes, Brevoort said, House of M stands just fine on its own, and if you’re so inclined, you can only read the main series and skip the miniseries, and have a enjoyable experience (or vice versa).

 

“They all spin fairly directly out of the core books to one degree or another,” Brevoort said. “Iron Man is in House of M, as are the characters in Fantastic Four House of M and Spidey. They’re stand-alone enough that you could pick up Iron Man: House of M #1-#3, and get it, although if you want to know more about the larger world that Iron Man is in, I’d advise you to pick up House of M as well.

 

“They all help to form a larger tapestry and a richer picture. Conversely, you don’t need to pick up the miniseries or the tie-in issues to enjoy House of M itself. Brian [bendis] is writing a linear story across the course of those eight issues. There are opportunities over the source of that story to delve into these characters and the world around them in greater depth, and we get to see some of that in these side projects.”

 

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For those (read: Silent Bob) who're tryin to piece together who's who in that last image....

 

Hey, I know who pretty much everyone in that picture is. The problem is...uh...I don't really care. It's one of the reasons (there were more, though) I didn't really like Disassembled, and the reason I've been reluctant to get into DC's Identity Crisis at all. Each of these companies have a few characters that I adore, but the other, say, 80% of the universes contain characters that I find either completely one-dimensional (most of the Justice League) or over-dramatized (most of the X-Men). And Bendis has always been so much better at the smaller, more intimate stories than he is at the huge epic ones. That's probably one of the reasons he was such a great match for Daredevil all these years. Daredevil's a relatively low-key superhero - you never really see Daredevil going up into space and fighting shapeshifters or traveling through time, etc.

 

But I'll trust your judgement on this one, Nick. If you read it when it comes out and decide it's good, I'll give it a shot as well.

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I appreciate that..and i understand your reluctance towards big-ass, costly crossovers. I also cant argue with Bendis' shining on smaller, character-driven events; i too feel Dissasembled was rushed, tho i will vouch for New Avengers.

 

I'm tryin to read the early tie-ins, even Excalibur by cleremont (...), so ill be sure to post on it; god knows Joe Q is hyping the hell out of it "forever changing the marvel U".

 

Be nice to see Secret War somehow tie in, too, much less, finish...

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Some great sketches up over at Newsarama for this event, and here's the cover schedule:

 

Meanwhile, Marvel has announced that the cover artist of the eight-issue House of M will be Essad Ribic, with variant cover artists for House of M as follows:

 

House of M #1 Joe Quesada

House of M #2 Terry Dodson

House of M #3 John Cassaday

House of M #4 Brandon Peterson

House of M #5 Alex Maleev

House of M #6 Greg Land

House of M #7 TBA

House of M #8 Chris Bachalo

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Couldnt agree more, gonna make a damn fine trade with all those variants. More hype!

 

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Bendis on House of M

by Matt Brady

 

The hype and buzz may have passed you by, but come June, Marvel launches House of M #1, the publisher’s return to universe-wide crossover stories, bringing all of the heroes of the Marvel Universe together to battle a single threat.

 

What makes House of M unique is that that threat is one of their own: the Scarlet Witch, a mutant, and former member of the Avengers.

 

But now, thanks to the events shown in the “Avengers Disassembled” storyarc, the Scarlet Witch is not…well. At all. Her powers are out of control, and, at the end of Disassembled, she was taken into custody by her father, Magneto – the mutant terrorist. Since that time, Magneto and Professor Xavier of the X-Men have been trying to help Wanda, only to have something go wrong – terribly wrong. And in June, at the start of House of M, Wanda’s two “families,” the Avengers and the X-Men must join to decide her fate.

 

Written by Brian Bendis, with art by penciler Olivier Copiel, inker Tim Townsend and colorist Frank D’Armata, the eight issue miniseries promises to seriously alter the status quo of the Marvel Universe.

 

We spoke with Bendis about the project.

 

Newsarama: The first question about the story would be in line with what I asked Tom Brevoort about the origin. It didn’t come up hand-in-hand with Avengers Disassembled, but rather, this came up as you all looked at the pieces afterwards?

 

Brian Bendis: Pretty much. Disassembled was flowing, and I was talking to Joe, and said, ‘Hey, you know – there’s something bigger here, this X-Men/Avengers thing, because there’s a connection for both the teams that they would each have to deal with, with the Magneto ending, and all of that.’

 

Joe gave me one of his ‘Whatever’ looks, and then a day later, asked if I was serious about it. I guess it took a little while to sink in. Then it was approached in a bigger meeting, and everyone started riffing on it, because it affects so many other people’s books. Honestly, I was worried about that part of it – everyone has plans for their own book, whether they’ve told their editors or not, and I didn’t want to be stepping on anyone or everyone’s toes just because I came up with an idea.

 

So the meeting started off as tossing the idea out, and asking people if they thought it was a good thing or a bad thing, and that’s when people started riffing on it, and adding their own stories into the larger mix. That’s when it all became bigger – I don’t, and hadn’t been thinking event, I had only been thinking story.

 

NRAMA: So from the start of this, even you weren’t seeing all the ripples that tossing this stone in the pond that is Marvel Universe would make?

 

BB: Not really. I don’t go into the editorial meetings and declare that I have an event. It was very important to me that anyone involved wanted to be involved, and no one’s stories were getting screwed up. I mean, I remember reading stuff as a kid, and you could tell that Secret Wars II was being shoved down the throats of the creative teams on the series at the time.

 

So, it was nice that everyone saw it as something that they could have fun with in their own books. It’s also one of those one-time deals – you can’t dip into this pond too many times. You have to do it once, and do it right, and when you catch me talking about House of M II in 2007, I’ll deny that I just said that.

 

But seriously, it does feel very much like a one-time, special deal, and it also feels like a new kind of thing, but something that had seeds in a lot of different stories in Marvel history, and evolved from there.

 

NRAMA: Storywise as it goes, how long after the end of Avengers Disassembled does House of M #1 begin?

 

BB: A few months.

 

NRAMA: And what’s been going on with Magneto, Wanda, and Professor Xavier is covered in Excalibur?

 

BB: And in House of M #1. You can pick up House of M #1 blind, without even having read Avengers Disassembled to understand what is going on. It’s very clear - there’s nothing more basic than a father-daughter relationship, and the pain of a father when his daughter is ill. It’s also got a very clear, very concise view of the things that have gone on in the Marvel Universe, and everyone’s fear is very clear.

 

NRAMA: There’s a lot out there about the effects that House of M will have on the Marvel Universe as a whole, both from rumors and what can be read into what will be happening in the spinoff miniseries. When you started to tell your story, was it as far-reaching as the entire Marvel Universe, or were more of the extended effects part of what happened when other people came on board and started seeing how it would affect their books and characters?

 

BB: The latter. The story started coming together, and you can’t help but start seeing cause and effects happening as you go along – some pretty big cause and effects – but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you should tell that in the main story.  The main House of M story has to have its own limits, otherwise it would end up all over the place – you could end up telling the story for ten years if you start following every trail of cause and effect, but we wanted to show that all of this – all the effects of what was going on in the main story are happening at the same time. I’m telling a story that pushes all the other pieces, but the other pieces are moving on their own after I give them a push.

 

That’s where Tom became the genius behind the House of M. What he was able to do, to take my ramblings, and craft it into something that everyone else could look at and then add to – he just blew it away. You look at someone who has the number of years of experience that someone like Tom [brevoort], or Ralph Macchio has working in the Marvel Universe, and it’s this kind of project where they get to fire on all cylinders. Everything they do well is wrapped up in this kind of story, and like I said, Tom just killed in the organization and seeing the logical ripple effects. I couldn’t even begin to take credit for the editorial finesse that is involved – Tom’s able to keep track and guide something like 40 creators working on stories connected to House of M, and have it all fit and make sense. I’m just in awe of what he’s doing with it all.

 

NRAMA: So if people can come into this blind – hit us with the pitch. Where are things standing when the first issue starts?

 

BB: When people come into the House of M, by page 4, you see that Wanda – who I do see misrepresented online – she’s not a villain, she’s a tragic figure. She’s not in control of herself. There’s a difference between a villain and someone who’s totally lost control of what they are able to do. It’s a very sad way for anyone to end up, and I think most people got that at least. They didn’t like to see it, but they got that Wanda had lost control.

 

So – at the beginning, you have this mutant, Wanda, who’s the daughter of the biggest mutant terrorist of all time. She has these reality-altering powers, and she has lost control of them through the stress of life – the physical and mental stress that her powers, undefined as they were for so many years, had put upon her. So here she is: a mutant who has lost control of her powers.

 

Got that?

 

NRAMA: She’s lost control…right…

 

BB: No, the bigger view – in the Marvel Universe, that’s one of the top ten, probably in the top two biggest fears of humankind. Many people in the Marvel Universe know they’re sharing the planet with mutants, and now, one has totally lost control. And it’s one of the most powerful ones.

 

When humans are afraid of mutants in the Marvel Universe, what are they afraid of? They’re afraid of a mutant who is totally out of control – that affects their lives.

 

So, if the word got out that a reality-altering mutant was responsible for the hellish nightmare that was the end of the Avengers, as well as a pretty lousy day for New York City as well – can you imagine? Anybody who is looking to get the mutants, to turn public sentiment against them, to control them, to imprison them even, there’s the smoking gun. Wanda’s the smoking gun.

 

On top of that, you have Magneto who, for all intents and purposes, sold his entire life and the happiness of his children for war against the humans, which he lost.

 

NRAMA: You’re harshing Magneto in all of this as well?

 

BB: How else would you put it? He’s tried for years, and he’s never gotten what he wanted. He lost. Genosha is in ruins, mutants do not control the earth, and he does not control the mutants. Nothing that he wanted happened.

 

And, on top of that, he lost his children. He’s looking at his daughter who’s now the worst case scenario for mutants; and his son…ehhh…don’t even get him started. It’s the worst thing he could imagine.

 

From there, you have Xavier trying desperately to do what he can do, and he can’t even hold it together for Wanda. From there, the story launches.

 

NRAMA: And the decision has to be made…

 

BB: Right – what will the assembled X-Men and Avengers do? I will tell you the one thing I see that most people are fearful of – that this story is some kind of alternative universe…

 

It’s not.  What’s happening to the Marvel Universe is actually happening to the Marvel Universe. This isn’t some kind of weirdness that spins out that isn’t real – it’s all real. It’s not a What If? it’s not a dream – it’s really happening.

 

NRAMA: This isn’t a story where…

 

BB: Bobby Ewing comes out of the shower at the end? No. This is actually happening, and will have effects. Things are not going to go back the way they were. I know that’s a little scary, but it’s a big story.

 

NRAMA: When you speak of seeing Wanda as a tragic character – you’re seeing her more as the human character, almost in a way, going back to the Stan and Jack views of the heroes with feet of…well, maybe not clay, but they’re not untouchable icons of complete control and utter infallibility…

 

BB: Yeah, but this all has historical roots dating back to Stan and Jack. If you go back and read the older stories, back when she was with the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, and how tortured she was then, and how tortured she was during her Silver Age appearances in Avengers, and how she worked really hard to make something of herself…she always had that underpinning of her legacy and doubt.

 

So, it’s not like all of a sudden, she turned. You could always see her wrestling with her outsider-ness, her trouble with her powers, trying to define herself, her relationship with her brother, and her relationship with her father. The tragedy is that she almost had it all together, and it all fell apart on her.

 

NRAMA: But the Marvel Universe has more than its share of magicians and mutants who could seemingly fix Wanda’s problems…why not just wave the woogie stick at her and have her be all better?

 

BB: Well Xavier is trying, but by waving the…whatever the hell you said at her and fixing things…would that be a good story? To me, it’s so much more interesting that there’s a real moral problem in how to deal with this. Here’s someone who, for the Avengers, part of their family. Also, with the X-Men…you can talk a good game about what you think the world should be like, and what you stand for, but when you’re faced with a real moral conundrum, what do you do with this problem? That’s where the more interesting parts of the story for me pop up.

 

NRAMA: That said then, the moral question comes down to the mutants and heroes of the Marvel Universe have to think about killing one of their own, right?

 

BB: Yes, and it’s discussed quite frankly, right in the first issue.

 

NRAMA: Were you looking to have the story be a forum for the discussion of capital punishment or…preemptive capital punishment?

 

BB: It’s a discussion among the characters, but nothing is being preached, because I don’t have an opinion about it, myself. But, of course, the characters have very distinct opinions that they have voiced over the years, so it’s nice to have all those opinions in a room, having a conversation.

 

If you put these characters in a room, and that subject comes up, Captain America is going to say what he wants to say, Wolverine is going to say what he wants to say, and no one is going to back down, because they really believe what they believe. That makes for interesting conversation, and hey, I think people know at this point that I would never shy away from characters having, what I believe would be an interesting conversation.

 

NRAMA: But still…bringing up something like a pre-emptive execution, especially of a well-liked character…you’re going to push some buttons…

 

BB: Oh I know. But what is funny when you do a scene like that…people who do have a very strong opinion about a subject like that usually tend to get very sensitive that they’re being preached to or something. They tend to only hear the side that they don’t like to hear. It’s like Million Dollar Baby – not that its about capital punishment, and not to ruin the movie, but there are people protesting it, saying it glorifies one side of an issue that they disagree with. Actually, it makes a pretty strong argument both for and against the issue at hand pretty clearly.

 

But I know – a lot of people are going to get pretty sensitive when the subject is brought up.

 

NRAMA: With the discussion of Wanda’s fate, are people on the lines fans would expect them to be?

 

BB: Oh yeah. There’s no way that Tom or Ralph would let me write Captain America saying, “You know what? She’s caused enough trouble. I say we kill her.” Nothing like that would happen, and that’s so out of character for Cap I wouldn’t even try it. The characters are already so well defined on this kind of subject, either by dealing with it in their pasts, or by dealing with others like it, it’s not even a point of argument as to how these characters would react and feel about it. All the way down to Spider-Man, everyone has made their opinions clear if not through words, then through their actions over the course of the last 40 years. It’s not really up to interpretation.

 

Of course, someone will take point with something, but that’s what the internet is for.

 

Oh – and for people who think I’m giving too much away, this is only like the first ten pages of the first issue. This is nothing compared to the cyclone that hits in issue #2 and #3.

 

NRAMA: Going back a way – you mentioned Magneto’s son, Quicksilver. What’s he doing in all of this? After all, depending on who’s interpreting him, he’s been both violently opposed to his father, or the heir apparent to his father’s crusade…

 

BB: He’s another interesting one, since we were just talking about people with very concrete points of view. Pietro and Wanda have both wavered back and forth on issues, one, obviously being a member of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants and being an Avenger two days later, but he’s also a man who has dedicated his life to protecting his sister.

 

NRAMA: So he’s not taking this well?

 

BB: Not at all. He’s dedicated his life to protecting his sister, and he didn’t. Knowing what Quicksilver is like, who would he blame the most for this? Himself. So, that’s all addressed in the first issue as well, and he will be a major part of what’s going on as well.

 

NRAMA: Looking at the mechanics side of things – you came into Marvel writing the single hero, with Ultimate Spider-Man and Daredevil, and then moved to your teams, with Ultimate X-Men and now, New Avengers. Now, with House of M, you’re writing the entire universe, for lack of a better word. What changes in your approach from handling a single hero, or small team to the full roster of the Marvel Universe?

 

BB: Well, the plotting has to be much more precise. There are other places where you can just write and see what happens, and sometimes magic does happen – you know where you have to end, and you let the character get you there. Some of the stuff I’ve written that people have enjoyed the most has come out of that approach, of just letting the characters go, and in a sense, let them tell the story.

 

NRAMA: Not with something like this, though?

 

BB: Not at all. In this instance, you really have to tighten up, and you have to know where you’re going, very clearly. But what I discovered during my X-Men run is just to find from whose point of view the story is most interesting. That works for whatever scene you’re in – find whose point of view makes things the most interesting, or whose point of view hasn’t been seen before – even during the fight scenes, where you put the reader in the action – what’s the most interesting way, whose eyes are the most interesting for the reader to look through?

 

And I’ll steal from everyone in this instance – I’ll steal from Neal Adams to Jackie Chan. You should see the laundry list of things that I put in the script, like, “In Rumble in the Bronx, Jackie put the camera here and really got the feel of a…” It’s something that makes for the best story, finding the best place to put the reader, since you have more than one viewpoint. In this instance, Magneto will have the most interesting point of view, and then in another scene, Cap will. A lot of the time, the easiest way to do this is to ask yourself, “Who in the room knows the least?” If you’re group, and Cyclops has no ideas what’s going on, that’s the most interesting point of view for the reader, because now you want to know everything that he wants to know.

 

NRAMA: In being given the keys to this particular car, and writing such a universe-spanning story; along with being a big Marvel fan in your won right…

 

BB: And that’s true – even though people love to say I hate my characters. I love, absolutely adore the characters I write, but I want to make them interesting. I love Matt Murdock, but “Daredevil: The Backrub Issue” doesn’t make for an interesting story. You have to put characters through hard times and rough situations if you want them to be interesting. Otherwise, who cares about them?

 

NRAMA: And is this also what you’re showing a bit more on the macro scale in the start of House of M #1 in that not everyone is going to agree what they should do with Wanda?

 

BB: Exactly. You don’t have a summit meeting between the two most powerful groups of heroes on the planet and have them all agree with one another. You’re going to see relationships and motivations change as a result of what happens in the story – starting with the meeting.

 

NRAMA: That said, in tackling a story like this while being a fan, do you have to work to “kill your darlings” in way, to make sure that you’re not putting in pieces that are there for you, and not as much for the good of the larger story?

 

BB: Yeah, to a degree, but more importantly, it’s not so much the stuff for me, as a fan, specifically, but it’s about drawing from the years and years of stories – of stuff that Chris Claremont has done, that other Avengers writers have done, up to what Joss has done – it’s about pulling in influences and how they affect a story like this. Years of Marvel life experience do help.

 

NRAMA: Back to the nuts and bolts of the series – when did it come down that Olivier Coipel was going to be the artist on this?

 

BB: I was working on Disassembled, and was re-reading Geoff Johns’ issues, and I really fell in love with Olivier’s work. It didn’t click with me the first time I read it for some reason, but for some reason, the second time through, I just wanted him to work on something with me. So, when I wanted the flashback in Avengers #503 to have taken place during Geoff’s run, I asked if we could get Oliver to do it, partly for the accuracy, and partly because I knew David Finch needed every break he could get on the double issues.

 

That led to us talking more about working together, and then, two weeks later, I was pitching House of M, and asked if he was busy. They said they were looking for something big to put him on, and there we go.

 

NRAMA: Looking at his work, and comparing it even with his previous Avengers work – it may be part of the pairing with Tim Townsend, but it looks cleaner and more refined that what he used to do.

 

BB: It’s Tim, and it’s part Frank D’Armata as well, who’s the colorist on New Avengers as well. But as for Olivier, historically, artists have been defined or made their names for years on big stories and big events, and I think he knows that and is taking it very seriously, which I can’t complain about, because it means he’s producing the best work of his career. To me, it has a Michael Golden meets Gaijin Studios feel.

 

He’s giving it everything he’s got, which is inspiring me to step up my game as well.

 

NRAMA: Scope-wise, this kind of has an old-school crossover feel to it in that old characters are coming back, and some new will show up, right?

 

BB: Yeah – you’re going to be seeing the “old” Avengers and the New Avengers together throughout the entire series. I know some people were fearful that the classic Avengers were going to be thrown by the wayside, but even before House of M started taking shape, that was never the intention. They’re all going to find nice homes and move on to their next chapters, and this is one of the bigger ones.

 

Also, you get some fallout from Disassembled even in issue #1, where some of the characters, and there will be some readers who probably agree with them, that the whole thing sucked, and they’re not happy with how things have picked back up again.

 

You also get some characters you haven’t seen in a long time, like Cloak and Dagger coming back front and center. I think people will be surprised who ends up in the cast for the bulk of the story.

 

And a ton of X-characters. Many that people haven’t seen in a long, long time…

 

NRAMA: Winding things down…as it’s been set up, that the world changes, it seems that it could be either Scarlet Witch’s doing on her own, or Magneto seeing this as his chance for victory…

 

BB: Exactly. Not only has something happened, we’re not sure how it happened, or who instigated it. But you’ll find out in the series. There’s a whodunit, and whatdunnit on top of the action in the series…you’ll find out in issue #7. Promise.

 

NRAMA: How far down the road in regards of change is Wanda from when she was an Avenger?

 

BB: Physically or mentally?

 

NRAMA: Mentally. Can her friends see a bit of the Wanda they remember and love, or is all that she was gone?

 

BB: That’s part of what you’ll find out in the series. I’m not trying to be coy, but I’m hoping that’s one of the things that people will be intrigued about the most of the whole thing.

 

NRAMA: So she could be the megalomaniac screaming from the mountaintop, or, perhaps even more disturbing, the good old Wanda they all know and love…but just a little…off…

 

BB: Could be. But The Incredibles has made it very hard for any comic book writer to write the monologues. It’s very hard to get the characters into the “Ha-ha-ha! I will rule the world!!!” You can’t do it anymore after The Incredibles. Everyone is very aware of the monologue, and it’s very hard to get away with.

 

NRAMA: This fall…tell me about the Marvel Universe, post House of M.

 

BB: It’s not going to be that easy to get it out of me. I will say though, one of the things I am most proud of in the making of an event out of this is that the actual tie-ins and the aftermath, particularly are of very high quality and are very well planned. I think we’ve all seen so-called event books that were tremendous, but the aftermaths were a disaster. No matter what the intention was, they got worse at the end or afterwards. I always thought it would be awesome if the aftermath of the event really had a point, and I think we really have something here. It will carry into New Avengers, it will carry into the X-books, and everyone has grabbed pieces that they liked and wanted to tell new kinds of stories, which is always the most exciting for both creators and readers. I’ve got a new villain coming out of this into New Avengers, there are stories coming with the X-Men that you’ve never seen the X-Men in before…and on down the line. When you’ve got things like that rolling, you know you’ve got something.

 

NRAMA: The teaser poster for House of M: United, Divided, They Fall…is that indicating that this is something that’s too big, even for all the heroes?

 

BB: You’ll see. I’m being coy again, I know.

 

One thing I do want to say is that this has been a great few months writing these big, giant stories for Marvel. Especially after Disassembled, I mean, who knew what the response to New Avengers would be? The responsibility of it all is being taken very seriously by all the parties involved, and I’m just really happy seeing how intrigued people are. I don’t know what the reaction will be when it comes out – I can hope for the best, but for now, seeing people’s genuine curiosity is so goddamn exciting. It really does motivate everyone to do the best they can on their jobs. So yeah – we all really do want to thank people for their questions, wonderings, and speculation. It’s really, really nice to have happen.

 

NRAMA: Last thing – for you, as either fan or writer, what’s the best part of all of this?

 

BB: What’s most exciting when I’m writing it is seeing old friends again, thrust into the spotlight. Meeting new characters and wondering what will come of them is great as well. And of course, the biggie – that this is actually happening to the Marvel Universe, and isn’t just a story in some alternative universe – that’s the most intriguing, and the scariest part of it all.

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What the FUCK is Magneto's story these days anyway? I'm not buying Excalibur outta priciple, but I'll consider the tie-ins. Last I saw was Grant MOrrison's last in-continuity arc where Mags turned out to be Xorn & was beheaded by Wolvie. HOW DOES ONE SURVIVE HAVING ONE'S HEAD DETACHED FROM ONE'S SHOULDERS?!?!?!?! Unless of course you're an Irish Vampire, but even Cass still shouldnae been able to talk without vocal cords... Can anyone answer my question?

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Ok, here's what ive gathered:

» Click to show Spoiler - click again to hide... «

 

I hope all that (kinda) clears this up, i know its confusing, and it wasnt a great ending, to be fair.

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  • 3 weeks later...

yeah, sometimes im like a marvel continuity whore. while others wasted the 90's with women & athletics and such, i stuided dilligently.

 

This arc's so big, it's pissing off Spain in one of the weirder sidestories ive come across in a while...

 

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HOUSE OF SPAIN VS. HOUSE OF M?

 

It’s been making the rounds across the internet, and now, reports are beginning to percolate that the Spanish Royal House's Law department is studying legal actions to stop Marvel from publishing of the The Pulse: House of M cover by Mike Mayhew “inspired” a copyrighted photograph of King Juan Carlos' of Spain.

 

Various sources in Spain have reported the image, and now, according to El Comercio Digital, that the Royal Palace is studying the case, and may possibly ask Marvel to remove the image from use. The image of Magneto in royal attire, copies the specific and distinct medals worn by the King, as well as the wallpaper behind him, and the wedding ring on the King's left hand (Magneto is unmarried, and does not wear a ring - thought that may be an artifact of the forthcoming story. However, the identical pattern of veins on both Magneto and Juan Carlos' left hands is harder to explain - see below).

 

While Panini’s Jose Luis Cordova was asked by the Spanish media about the image, he insisted that Panini is not responsible for the image, as it only reprints (via license) what Marvel publishes. The crossover issue of The Pulse that carries the image, Cordova estimated, will reach Spain sometime early in 2006 in a Panini edition.

 

This is not, of course, the first time Marvel has “used” European royalty in its comics – in 2003 the deceased Princess Diana was due to make a return in the pages of X-Statix, but was removed, in part, to public outcry.

 

The Pulse: House of M Special Edition, a mock newspaper set in the world of "The House of M," and the picture is presumably meant to appear as a newsmagazine photograph showing Magneto in his role during that storyline. The image of Magneto in his Juan Carlos pose may not be the final cover image.

 

The special issue is due in stores in July, and will retail for $0.50.

 

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Alright, unauthroized use of a copywritten photo is dumb, but it wouldve been a cool cover, i think, and 50c sourcebooks are all good by me.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Newsarama's got the 6-page preview!

 

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With just a little over three weeks left before it hits comic shop shelves and just three days before retailers have to finalize their orders for its first issue, Marvel Comics continues to play a game of “Show & Tell” for their summer event House of M.

 

Last week they did some “telling” with a press conference call, and this week they're doing some “showing”. Marvel has provided Newsarama with a preview of the first six pages of House of M #1, the beginning of the 8-part limited series by Brian Bendis and Olivier Copiel that the publisher promises will change their universe from here-on-in.

 

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Hell yeah! I've been a long time avenger fan, and as fan I'm looking forward to bendis House of M.

While nick is right about him writing smaller storys I've yet to be dissapointed by him, and as for the sidestorys I realy don't give a damn. The pulse on the other hand I will pick-up.

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Hell yeah! I've been a long time avenger fan, and as fan I'm looking forward to bendis House of M.

While nick is right about him writing smaller storys I've yet to be dissapointed by him, and as for the sidestorys I realy don't give a damn. The pulse on the other hand I will pick-up.

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  • 1 month later...

Interview Same deal: dont read if you're not caught up (# 3)....

 

HEADING TO HALFWAY: BENDIS TALKS HOUSE OF M

 

So…House of M #3 is out, the covers for #4 and Pulse #10 are out as well…

 

Hawkeye’s back.

 

That said, we figured it might be a good time to catch up with Brian Bendis to talk about the Amazing Archer’s return now that it can be talked about freely, and no one’s saying, “I can tell you, but I’d have to kill you” anymore.

 

So – with no further ado – Bendis under the spotlight.

 

Newsarama: Now that you can openly acknowledge (at least) what’s been revealed so far, can you perhaps describe to heart, the main thrust of this story? A theme that seems to be coming through is looking at how conflict has shaped the heroes we know today, and without such conflict, the characters wouldn't exist as they do, and might not even be…heroic. That is, if things had gone a different way, the heroes of the Marvel Universe might not be “heroes.”

 

Brian Bendis: That's certainly part of it, well put, but it’s also an epic. A large landscape filled with intimate stories. Just a big whopper of a tale and putting the heroes in just about the stickiest situation you could ever imagine them in - a situation there seems no way out of. And on top of that, just by the nature of the characters and their story, it’s also about race and politics and world order and revolution.

 

More than any story I have ever written, this book is about the history of Marvel. It’s a real trick to have it read clean for someone who doesn't get all the references as well as for someone who would get all the references. The first post on my board when #3 came out was about the Wolf Pack reference. It’s about history, and in a sense, all of our shared history with what Marvel is about.

 

NRAMA: Just to hear it from the creator’s perspective and words, can you explain exactly what the “House of M” reality is? What it is and maybe more importantly, how did it come to be? What was the turning point?

 

BB: Well, that's already been described in issue #3.

 

NRAMA: Indulge us.

 

BB: Okay - though we’re moving forward in the story and not doing a flashback scene showing the moment, Magneto did have a moment in the seventies where he was able to turn the tide of anti-mutant conspiracy and at the same time shine a light on it to the world at large. This started a chain of events that brought the house of Magnus monarchy into play. I picked the seventies because it was a time of change and revolution.

 

NRAMA: That said, what is Wanda doing exactly – did she just change that one thing, or are there millions of little changes that have happened since that one major one?

 

BB: This will be explained in the final act of the series. I don’t want to be Charlie spoiler.

 

NRAMA: Moving over to the characters themselves as they are depicted in House of M, how did you come up with the alternate scenarios for them? Was that basically your doing or a group effort with Marvel editors and other creators like Mark Waid and Tom Peter, Peter David, etc…?

 

BB: I did a lot of the leg work. I spent months crafting a back story and the actual series - spending months considering whose lives would or needed to be the most effected by what the Magnus dream would be. Tom [brevoort] helped me take the organic flow of ideas and put it into a beat sheet of the larger ideas for the other editors and writers. It showed them what we needed for our story and what we had to offer to anyone who wanted any of the other pieces.

 

Then, and this is the part I'm most proud of, anyone who wanted in came in and added whatever they had to offer. Just like the Marvel Universe has always been about : multiple authors with multiple points of view all expressing themselves at the same time. A lot of the writers and editors threw in some really great stuff that made me rethink some of my stuff and I think everyone worked out of a pure place. I think everyone got something better out of it than they had hoped.

 

NRAMA: Did you start with the basic concept and try to map out an internal logic as to where Peter Parker and Bruce Banner would be and their circumstances, or was it a more freewheeling process to just come up with new, creative situations for them?

 

BB: Both, I tried to be open to everyone’s idea. If someone had a story to tell we tried to make sure they got to tell their story. That is the attitude that has kept me at Marvel all these years. Story first. There was no way in hell I wasn’t going to treat anyone the way I wanted to be treated.

 

I talked to a lot of the players. All the editors, as well as Daniel Way, Peter David, Chris Claremont and Ed Brubaker - whose Captain America issue I just adore. I made sure everyone felt right about what they wanted to do. Writing can be very insular. Very private, it was fun to riff with everyone like this.

 

NRAMA: Let’s hit one of the characters specifically – namely Wolverine. What can you say about his role in the story? He remembers the “real” Marvel Universe and knows this reality is “wrong”, correct?

 

BB: He remembers his whole life. The idea being that this – in House of M - is his heart's desire, he knows who he is and who he was. The glitch is - he knows everything up and through the moment the world changed. He doesn’t know how it happened but he knows it happened.

 

NRAMA: Why does he remember and is he alone in that regard?

 

BB: He's not alone, but he’s alone right now.

 

NRAMA: In issue #3, we meet the “resistance”, including a character we’ll ask about in more detail in a few minutes. How and why did you choose the characters you did to play this role?

 

BB: There are dozens of people in the Marvel Universe that would clearly be happier as rebels than heroes. In fact, many who often skate the line – it’s not hard to imagine Luke Cage taking a role like this and loving every second of it.

 

NRAMA: On a different note, Marvel has built this up to be their publishing event of the year, decade even. Did you originally think of the story this way? Are you comfortable trying to meet the expectations fans have for this?

 

BB: Oh no. No, no, no. I did not plan it to be all this! This is something I often read online about myself that drives me koo koo. Who would think like that? All I wanted was to tell a story. After Avengers Disassembled I was in full 'not realizing what I was saying out loud' mode. I said, “You know, Wanda is now the worst fear of the Avengers and the X-Men. She's the worst case mutant scenario... ever!” I thought, you know a couple of my minis had done pretty well and they were asking for others, and I thought this was a damn good idea for a mini. The Marvel gang turned it into this. Now I certainly wasn’t going to back away from the challenge, but no, Tom, Joe [Quesada], Dan [buckley], and Mike Marts deserve a great deal of the credit for the larger publishing picture. In fact everyone in editorial and the Marvel exclusive freelancers contributed something as far as I can tell.

 

After the planning started and the writers all had a good sense of the plan - I was left alone to write and didn’t try to involve myself in anything that didn’t directly involve the main series and the aftermath. It was very, very important that the aftermath be planned perfectly. These so called “events” really are judged by the aftermath more than the main story. I think we've learned the lessons history has brought us in regards to that. That was and is key – the aftermath has to mean something.

 

NRAMA: With the understanding you have to take Internet message board conjecture and reaction with a big grain of salt, the perception early on was House of M was an alternate reality where Magneto and mutants held power, but Marvel appeared to try to suggest that wasn’t exactly the case. As the writer did you ever become concerned that fans guessing the basic thrust of the story and Marvel’s subtle suggestions that it wasn’t was going to negatively impact reaction when it was finally revealed to be what they thought it was?

 

BB: I love the guessing, I love the back and forth on line. No generation of comic creator has ever had what we have. The global unity of comic readers. I love the high level of debate and concern. So I gotta take a little ball busting. That’s ok. I love that I’m held to task. I don’t take the job lightly.

 

But yes, there is that perception of what people think it will be, and I have to be patient and let the work speak for itself - even though it’s hard. They love to try to label right away. Alternate universe? Heroes Reborn? All that. I know. Everyone wants to label and categorize. It’s the world we love in.

 

But I know we have something else, I know that already people see that it’s something else. Its not an altnerate story, its happening in Marvel Universe proper, right now. It’s going to affect change in Marvel Universe proper in many, many books. I know people want to know what that change is in the first issue, but that's not this story.

 

When Alias started, everyone thought it was going to be porn; when Ultimate Spider-Man started everyone thought they were going to cancel the regular Marvel Universe;, when New Avengers was announced people just assumed we were going to kill all the old…well, you get the point.

 

NRAMA: Well, on this note, how is House of M different from “Days of Future Past”, “Age of Apocalypse” and other alternate reality stories?

 

BB: Those stories - and I have a real soft spot in my heart for “Days of Future Past” - were examinations and grand adventures on their own in their own pocket universes. House is happening right now.

 

NRAMA: Going back to the expectation factor, Marvel and Joe Quesada very consciously ramped up expectations for issue #3, which I think we can now openly acknowledge was the appearance of Hawkeye.

 

First of all, just to be sure we have this correct, Gwen Stacy has already been revealed to be alive in the HoM-verse. Is Hawkeye’s appearance more than just a dead character appearing alive in an alternate reality? Is this supposed to be “the” Hawkeye, somehow crossed over, or is he too now a creation of Wanda, with all the pluses and minuses that entails?

 

BB: It absolutely is Hawkeye first of all.

 

But I have to take the heat on something though. I am the author of the "Internet cracking in half" line, I wrote it, and I said it when I did the interview here. I thought it was cute. I handed in my solicit info. I wrote the line on a lark because as I was thinking about what the reaction to Hawkeye’s death has been. And we've received the gambit - to presents from fans who have hated him for years, to death threats, to Hawkeye voodoo dolls, the whole thing. No one seems to even care that Vision and Ant-Man bought it too. Just Hawkeye, so I put on my best Stan Lee/ Roy Thomas hat and I wrote a piece of classic Marvel wazoo hype.

 

Remember the old: "YOU WILL NEVER HAVE TO READ ANOTHER SPIDER-MAN COMIC EVER AGAIN!! or THE GREATEST NEW VILLIAN IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD DEBUTS RIGHT HERE!!"

 

This is what we do. It’s fun.

 

Tom or someone at Marvel must have found the Internet line funny because they left it in. Why this one stuck out at people I have no idea. But I will confess, no, I did not think the actual Internet would actually break in half. I did assume there would be a lot of posts on the subject.

 

NRAMA: Well, now that the Internet is secure, can you discuss the death a little more - was this the plan all along when you wrote his apparent demise in "Disassembled"? Can you go on the record now as to whether or not he really did die in that story?

 

BB: He absolutely did die. It was absolutely a sh___y way to go. Hawkeye absolutely did not have control of the situation, and all of this will absolutely be addressed. Was House the plan all along? No. no, House started coming together right after Avengers Finale. All of the ideas I had about it slid into what House of M became.

 

NRAMA: Have to ask the expectations questions again. Did you concern yourself with Marvel building Hawkeye’s appearance up in the manner they did, and whether or not that would meet expectations?

 

BB: You can’t win playing that game. I try to keep it simple. What’s the best story? What would be the most exciting? The most scary, the most intriguing ideas? I think its what our readers expect and want and damn well deserve.

 

NRAMA: Okay, looking forward, there is still a lot of story to go, so at this stage, can you give readers some hints about things they should be looking out for in the rest of the story?

 

BB: Heroes will gather and they will fight this House of M. You can expect a fight where heroes whose entire personality has been restraint, need to let loose in ways they have never done before, because if the heroes of this story lose this fight, everything they have ever fought for is lost.

 

NRAMA: Anything in general you want readers to know or consider as the rest of the storyline unfolds?

 

BB: Just enjoy. Oh and the House of M: The Pulse Special newspaper came out really great. Just saw the color files and the designers killed on it. Best fifty-cents you'll ever spend.

 

NRAMA: Regarding the Pulse #10, the solicitation copy promises a tie-in issue of specific interest to (new or old) Avengers fans. Would it be fair to assume the issue somehow involves Hawkeye’s appearance?

 

BB: No, he’s just on the cover.

 

Joking. Please.

 

This story is about Hawkeye dealing with the very unique experience he is going through. It gives the character a moment to deal with all that he has gone through. Helps put the entire House of M into personal context. It also helps explore the larger palette of House as it relates to the media, and it all ties directly into issue #3 and #4.

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San Diego Con: House of M updates...lotta potential spoilers here if you havent been readin, be warend.

 

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Marvel just wrapped their second SDCC program for the weekend, the The World Has Changed: House of M: X-Men panel.

 

Art shown at the panel and displayed below include upcoming House of M variant covers, a new X-Men and Power Pack project by writer Marc Sumerak artist Gurihiru, the cover to Paul Jenkins and Paolo Rivera’s Mythos: X-Men installment of their upcoming 8-issue limited series, and the New X-Men Academy X Yearbook Special.

 

Click on all the images for larger versions and pass your cursor over the thumbs for info about the images.

 

Panel attendees included Joe Quesada, writers Peter David, Robert Kirkman, and John Layman, Associate Editor Andy Schmidt and Senior X-editor Mike Marts, and Marketing head John Dokes. As Marvel usually does they kicked off the panel right away to questions from readers.

 

Perhaps the big news of the panel came from Peter David. The writer finally confirmed what’s been long expected, an X-Factor series spinning out of the events of both the Madrox series and House of M is in the works.

 

The series will begin in November, be drawn by Ryan Sook and feature familiar characters like Jamie Madrox (of course) Strong Guy and Wolfsbane, and other characters will join the X-Factor investigations team.

 

David explained that Madrox is expanding the business after winning a million dollars on a gameshow like “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire” by using his “lifeline” to call a duplicate who was organizing a group of 20 other duplicates all on Internet connections looking up information he needed.

 

X-Factor Investigations will be headquartered in District X. David said for fans to think of it as “Marvel’s mutant universe meets the X-Files, but it’s not going to be long and boring and without a point,” an obvious but humorous dig at the former FOX series.

 

The team will investigate both small cases and small cases that are just the tip of the iceberg for larger cases.

 

David described X-Factor Investigations as a “dark and scruffy agency”, and that they’ll run into the “Singularity Investigation Agency”, which is sort of a Marvel’s version of Wolfman & Hart (from the Angel TV series), a detective agency to the stars with its own dark secret.

 

PAD gave major props to editor Andy Schmidt for getting both Madrox and X-Factor rolling and keeping things exciting for him at Marvel.

 

- In other Peter David news, he also announced that he will not continue on the Hulk ongoing series indefinitely. He has one more issue after his HoM tie-in arc ends, and then he leaves the series.

 

David explained his run was originally slated to be one year and that this increasing workload is the reason he’s not remaining with the series, a workload that includes Fantastic Four and Wolverine original novels by Simon & Schuster along with his various comic book projects like Fallen Angel, Red Sonja, and Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man.

 

The panel actually began with fans asking some very familiar questions and getting some familiar responses.

 

- Asked when Thor was coming back, Joe Quesada said, “You’ll be a happy man in 2006”. Quesada reiterated they’re taking time with Thor to get a new series right.

 

Also asked if Thor was coming back in House of M, Quesada said, “No, but I have been known to lie”.

 

- No plans for a Wolverine MAX series and if any one ever does get planned it will have to be a story that can only be told in a MAX book.

 

- Asked if dead characters that returned in HoM would stay around after the storyline is over, Quesada said anything is possible, once again reiterating Marvel’s promise of huge changes to the Marvel Universe as a result of HoM.

 

- Regarding the extent of those changes, Quesada said (for example) Peter Parker won’t be going back to high school, but that there will be changes to Peter’s like “probably more tragic than Spider-Man has seen in a while”.

 

- Scarlet Witch appears in HoM #6.

 

- HoM: Fantastic Four writer John Layman said Brian Bendis has plans for Dr. Doom in the main HoM series.

 

- The cover to HoM #8 shows Wolverine standing over Magneto ready to gut him. Marvel said they couldn’t show the standard cover to issue #7, as it reveals a story detail like the cover to #4 did.

 

- Speaking about Colossus: Bloodline, Quesada said to expect news about David Hine in about a month, and reiterated that they’re concentrating on making solo X-Men series integral to the regular series.

 

- The upcoming X-Men/Black Panther 4-issue crossover will begin moving the latter series forward as Reggie Hudlin has been reintroducing the character and concepts up to now. Quesada promised an event in 2006 that the Panther plays a major part in and the crossover is the beginning of that.

 

- X-Men and Power Power is a 4-issue series beginning in October. Of the series Quesada joked, “Because you demanded it!”

 

- The often-deadpan Schmidt added sarcastically Marvel was trying to find more ways to showcase the X-Men and Wolverine and this one seemed like a logical fit.

 

- Sentinel returns in November, again with writer Sean McKeever and art by Udon.

 

- Asked if they’ll ever explain “Planet X” and Magneto returning in Excalibur, Marts said Bendis will shed some light on that in HoM.

 

- Marvel is ready to start giving some attention to the Inhumans. They won’t play a role in HoM but Quesada said Black Bolt is instrumental in the aftermath. Quesada said Marvel really likes the characters and they’re seen as “ripe for the picking” again.

 

- Asked if Marvel will definitely clarify if Magneto is a hero or villain, Quesada said there will be a “locking in” of Magneto’s status after HoM.

 

- Asked how the specials fit in with the changes occurring in HoM, Quesada reiterated that they specials are creator-specific (evidenced by two FF: The End projects by Alan Davis and Stan Lee) and not necessarily locked into Marvel Universe events or continuity.

 

- Aaron Lopestri has a new project that will be named shortly (but not today).

 

- Once again asked if Priest has any projects in the works, it was explained he’s working in a pitch but that nothing is currently approved.

 

- The panels silent partner Robert Kirkman has a few new Marvel projects coming, including one that will be announced at tomorrow’s Cup ‘O Joe panel.

 

- Asked if there were any plans for Hawkeye post-HoM, Quesada said laughing, “He’s dead”, adding that it would be a pretty boring series.

 

- Finally, Quesada looked to his editors when asked if there was any plans for Peter Milligan’s X-Statix characters and asked if he could say anything. The response was “not yet”, but that there was something X-Statix related coming down the road.

 

HOM7altCVR_col.jpg

 

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More great sketches & art here...

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Following Skeet's rule of my "long quote posts"...basically, lotta folks coming back from the dead, prolly in House of M, such as Thor and others, while Peter Parker is again somehow gettin screwed.

 

X-Factor's gonna be an investigative team (Alias-esque?) book, like PaD (Peter David)'s Madrox mini series last year.

 

Wolvy only gets a MAX series if a story calls for it (fair enough), McKeever's Sentinel book is comin back (good, cause it ended abruptly), and an X-Statix project might be in the works (yay!).

 

Also, m'boy's gonna fuck up Magneto in this series later, from the looks of things:

 

HOM008_flcov.jpg

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News on The Pulse: House of M Special Edition

 

PULSE_HOM_SpecEd_pg2a.jpg

 

So, what is this The Pulse: House of M Special Edition all about anyway?

 

For one, as Joe Quesada pointed out at his San Diego Cup o Joe panel, it no longer features the King of Spain’s twin brother on the cover (although fromt he looks of it, that might be Harvey Keitel).

 

For two, it’s a $0.50 newspaper – from the Marvel Universe…really (we add with a wink).

 

The solicitation for the special reads:

 

EXTRA, EXTRA—READ ALL ABOUT IT!!!

 

You’re in the world of the HOUSE OF M. Super heroes battle over your head, the flag of M waves over you—oppressing you, and the world falls apart around you. When you need to know what’s happening, who’s doing it, and where you’ll need to hide, you can count on only one source—THE PULSE!

 

THE PULSE: HOUSE OF M SPECIAL EDITION is the ACTUAL newspaper from the HOUSE OF M! Your best source for late-breaking-survival! Packed to the gills with House of M secrets you can't get anywhere else. Contains exclusive art and text.

 

12 PGS./T+ SUGGESTED FOR TEENS AND UP …$.50

 

Still scratching the noggin? Marvel has provided Newsarama with a look inside of the special that his stories today.

 

PULSE_HOM_SpecEd_pg1.jpg

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