By Tim Stevens
Come February, it will not just be the cold keeping residents of the Marvel Universe indoors. No, monsters will have them cowering out of sight, thanks to writer Fred Van Lente, artist Kyle Hotz, and the new limited series DESTROYERS.
“[The monsters] are being operated by a longstanding Marvel character whose motivations are pretty straightforward: By sending each one of these monsters to attack a different fault line, an Extinction-Level Event will trigger worldwide, slaying most humanity and allowing the Second Age of Monsters to begin,” Van Lente says.
|DESTROYERS #1 cover by Carlo Pagulayan|
Of course, in the mighty Marvel tradition, monsters will also be the only ones who can save them. As led by Golden Age hero The Destroyer, The Thing, She-Hulk, Karkas, A-Bomb, and The Beast come together to give the terrifying creatures what-for. Unfortunately for them, using just their fists alone will not save the day.
“Ben Grimm and company have to solve a mystery that dates back millions of years—that involves both the Devil Dinosaur and the Deviants,” the writer explains. “The focus here is squarely on the A-list monsters of the Marvel Universe as they punch their fellow monsters in the face and try and avert the same crisis from destroying humanity that once destroyed the dinosaurs.”
“This is a five-issue romp filled with explosions and crushing and more explosions, but it’s also an exploration of the thin line between humanity and our darker nature,” Editor Bill Rosemann elaborates. “On the surface, the scary squad of The Thing, She-Hulk, A-Bomb, Karkas and The Beast each seem to be unstoppable engines of destruction—and they are! But beneath their fearsome exteriors lie the same fears and desires that motivate us all.”
For this team of monster-do-wells, the fate of the world represents but one reason to join up and fight. To sweeten the deal, The Destroyer presents a very tempting offer to several of the characters.
“[The Destroyer] has offered them a cure for their various monstrous conditions, but only if they travel around the world and defeat the sudden outbreak of giant monsters that are stomping cities and devouring armies across the world,” Van Lente reveals. “Some of these team members may be more apt than others to take up The Destroyer on his offer of a cure—and some may want to destroy all monsterkind to do it!”
Their desire to escape their appearances may be further fueled by the reactions of the people they try to save who Van Lente admits may be less than appreciative.
|DESTROYERS #1 cover by Carlo Pagulayan|
“A monster looks like a monster if it has claws and hide and fur and a lot of the people the Destroyers are saving will run screaming at the sight of them,” he says. “This is, indeed, a classic Marvel concept of a group of misfits trying to save a world that hates and fears them.”
Artist Kyle Hotz helps to convey the otherworldly nature of the protagonists and fully realize the creatures.
“Kyle and I are trying to create all-new monsters with unique concepts and hooks that scare the pants off you and make for credible adversaries to a team that fields some of the toughest and most experienced heroes the X-Men, Fantastic Four and Avengers have to offer,” Van Lente notes of his collaborator.
The collaboration appears to be working as Rosemann remains effusive in his praise of the creative team:
“Add [Van Lente and Hotz] together and you have the world’s top talents at combing crazy continuity and bad beasties into an accessible and tasty tale of shocks, sacrifices and smashing. Fred and Kyle will reveal to you the deeper layers of characterization and complexity that drive Marvel’s mightiest monsters.”
Can’t make it to the convention? Follow along with our liveblogs above and at marvel.com/fanexpo2011. And don't forget the Marvel Events App & events.marvel.com, the best way to get exclusive videos, real-time announcements from the convention floor and up-to-the-minute panel, in-booth and signing schedules of all your favorite Marvel creators!