My Cup o' Joe

MyCup o' Joe Week 28

Learn more about the Ultimatum and answers fans' questions!

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MyCup o' Joe is the weekly communiqué from Marvel Comics Editor in Chief Joe Quesada to the legion of Mighty Marvelites Assembled! Every Friday, Joe will sit down with journalist Jim McLauchlin to answer questions on the pressing issues of the day at Marvel and throughout comics. And you get to chip in as well! Joe will be answering YOUR questions every week! To get in on the fun, post your questions at the bottom of this page!

ULTIMATUM #1

ULTIMATUM #2

ULTIMATUM #3

JM: I'd like to talk a tad about ULTIMATUM, which hits in November… JQ: That's cool, but I'm gonna jump into January as well. JM: Can't you just stay focused on one thing today? JQ: My Rittalin 'script ran out, plus I'm very excitable when it comes to our comics. Marvel fans deserve my complete hucksterism dial to max. JM: It never stops does it? JQ: There is no "off" on the hyperbole machine. JM: What have you got. JQ: Well, I cleared it with the marketing folks, and I'm gonna announce a new project that launches in January in this column, so remind me before we get done.

ULTIMATUM
teaser by Ed
McGuinness

ULTIMATUM
teaser by Ed
McGuinness

JM: Will do. Now as to ULTIMATUM, last we spoke of this, you mentioned that "No one is safe!" and "Every team will sustain a loss of an original cast member!" That's all well and good, but what is this storyline at its core? What's it "about" for want of a better term? JQ: The story is about the ramifications of the conspiracy, or the big secret, that has been hiding at core of the Ultimate Universe. If you haven't read ULTIMATE ORIGINS then you're going to want to stop here. This has been your obligatory spoiler warning. No seriously, spoiler warning, you should stop reading. JM: If I stopped reading, how the heck could we continue this interview? JQ: Not you, them?

ULTIMATUM
teaser image

ULTIMATE
SPIDER-MAN
#129

JM: Oh, them. But what about me, I stopped reading anything by Bendis years ago? JQ: Well, I'll tell you when to come back. JM: Works for me, the playoffs are on, see ya later. JQ: Allrightee then. In the Ultimate Universe, much like the Marvel U, mutants believe themselves to be the next step in the evolution of man. However, the truth, as revealed in the first issue of ULTIMATE ORIGINS, is much more than that. Mutants or Mutantkind was created in a test tube and has nothing to do with natural selection or the normal genetics found in nature. Man created mutant. So how do you think that will affect the world once that secret gets out? Well? How do you think it will effect the world? Hullooooo, I'm asking a question. JM: Sorry, Boston is getting its ass kicked.

ULTIMATUM
teaser by Ed
McGuinness

ULTIMATUM
teaser by Ed
McGuinness

ULTIMATUM
teaser by Ed
McGuinness

JQ: Thanks, I was DVRing the game. JM: Interesting. Now it's pains-in-the-ass like me that are always trying to drag information like this out of you. Whereas I know you don't wanna say—and can't say—"the butler did it," do you or the company have a general philosophy on what sort of information you do dole out? JQ: Sure. We try to parcel out as much as we can to entice our readers, without giving away the whole story if possible. We do this in conjunction with the writers on any given project that it's as coordinated an effort as something like this can possibly be. And sometimes I just make stuff up. Watch, in the next issue of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, Mephisto returns to put the marriage back together. See, it's easy and now people will be talking about this column for the next year and a half. JM: I think we do see a call for stuff like this in the reader questions every week: People ask very specific questions, they want very specific information, very often of the "whodunit" variety. Do you find yourself weighing "what the fans say they want" versus "what they really want" in terms of story info? JQ: I find myself doing that with every aspect of this job. But here's the thing: If they didn't want to know this information, it would just mean that we weren't doing our jobs. We want people to be ravenous for the whodunit of it all, that's what we ultimately work for. If our fans sat around not caring about what's going to happen next, well let's just say that someone else would most likely be writing this weekly column. JM: All that said, you have to have some preview art on ULTIMATUM, right? JQ: Don't I always? And since you asked nicely, sure, here it is.

ULTIMATUM #1
preview art by
David Finch

ULTIMATUM #1
preview art by
David Finch

ULTIMATUM #1
preview art by
David Finch

ULTIMATUM #1
preview art by
David Finch

ULTIMATUM #1
preview art by
David Finch

ULTIMATUM #1
preview art by
David Finch

JM: Do you ever look up and say, "Holy crap, the Ultimate Universe has been around for nine years already?" Does it still feel "new" to you? JQ: It still feels remarkably new to me. But nine years is a long time, and it can be really hard for me to grasp. It seems like only yesterday that I was getting hate e-mails about how the Ultimate idea was the worst thing Marvel did since the Spider Clone. Hey, you know who you are—don't deny that you thought it was a dumb idea. JM: Shifting gears, you have a new foray into original. Web-exclusive stories with new Hulk and Iron Man stuff. We've danced around this Maypole a few times, but is this indeed the wave of the future? JQ: I certainly think it's one of the future waves. But comics are branching out in so many directions that digital comics are just one facet of expansion. Marvel is branching out as well, and certainly we've proven to be a company these days that embraces our readers in whatever form they may take whether they be real, virtual or otherwise. I know some may look at the digital world with fear, but I always go back to this one place: When collected editions started to really become commercially significant, everyone and their mother was claiming this the end of the monthly comic with complete certainty. Perhaps these are the same folks who thought the Ultimate Universe a dumb idea? Anyway, I kept telling folks that I believed that both trades and monthly comics will thrive, and that one would help the other. I feel the exact same way about the world of digital comics. I think it will help monthly comic sales as well as trade sales. There will be people who will like one form over another and there will be those who will like multiple formats. We're really diving in the pool now. We have new, Web-exclusive stuff launching featuring Kid Colt, Werewolf by Night, American Eagle, Fin Fang Foom and more. We're trying a little bit of everything here. It's not like you see a lot of "regular" Western comics, monster comics, or humor comics out of Marvel. But we'll try them here and see what gains an audience. It's really a rather exciting time for this field, as we cross over into new media.

IRON MAN:
FAST FRIENDS #1

IRON MAN:
FAST FRIENDS #1
art by Ronan
Cliquet

IRON MAN:
FAST FRIENDS #1
art by Ronan
Cliquet

THE INCREDIBLE
HULK: THE FURY
FILES

THE INCREDIBLE
HULK: THE FURY
FILES #1 art by
Salva Espin

JM: On your previous Web-exclusive thingee, SECRET INVASION: HOME INVASION, do you think you "got out of it" what you needed to? What were the goals, and how do you measure the results? JQ: What we got out of it was a lot of media buzz outside of the comics industry. Taking incremental steps by doing things like this sends out a clear signal to the world that Marvel is all about fun and great stories. With that in mind, gauging the results is really easy—if people are talking about it, then it worked. JM: You had previously mentioned that Kinsey, the "everywoman" of SECRET INVASION: HOME INVASION, was going to become a major character in the Marvel Universe. Is this still the case, or has that petered out? JQ: Kinsey is still appearing three times a week—every Monday, Wednesday and Friday—in SECRET INVASION: HOME INVASION, the free Marvel Digital Comic that's been published since the beginning of the Secret Invasion back in April. She's already encountered the likes of Nick Fury and the Secret Warriors, the Young Avengers and others. And if you've been following SECRET INVASION: HOME INVASION closely, you will note that Kinsey recently came into possession of certain technology that could potentially make her a major player in the Marvel Universe. You can keep reading here. And this all really started when Kinsey suspected that something was wrong with her brother. We've since found that he was being impersonated by a Skrull. He definitely seems to have been either a superhero or supervillain, and we HAVE seen him before, in his super-guise, in other Marvel comics. As to just who he is, that will be revealed as well in due time. JM: So. New January project. What is it?

DR. DOOM AND
THE MASTERS
OF EVIL #1

JQ: Ah! We have DR. DOOM AND THE MASTERS OF EVIL, a four-issue mini beginning in January. The good Doctor is after a mysterious trinket, and has realized it would behoove him to have lesser villains (and he considers EVERYone lesser) find this trinket for him. This leads to all sorts of unconventional battles, such as the Sinister Six vs. Iron Man and Dr. Strange, The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants vs. Spider-Man, and more. Patrick Scherberger is the artist, and Paul Tobin is writing the series. JM: Scherberger I'm aware of, but I've never heard of Paul Tobin. Who is he? JQ: The talented Mr. Tobin is the veteran author of THE AGE OF THE SENTRY, SPIDER-MAN FAMILY, MARVEL ADVENTURES THE AVENGERS and more. JM: And on that note, we are on to reader questioning… Bert wants to know: It's pretty much a given that the Skrulls will, in some way, "win" the war in SECRET INVASION. Being that the Skrulls are going to be around during "Dark Reign," how are the superheroes going to function? Will they be outcasts, much like the New Avengers were post-"Civil War?" Or will they be working in harmony with the Skrulls for a better future? I'm sure a lot of superheroes, if not all, would loathe the thought of the world being run by Skrulls. Bert Halley JQ: Bert, since you know that the Skrulls win, what makes you think that there will be any heroes left to function in any capacity at all? What if the new breed of Marvel hero was 100% Skrull? Not saying that would happen of course. 'Cause sometimes I just make stuff up. But is that what I'm doing this time? Did I mention Mephisto in the next issue of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN? Kurt asks: Whatever happened to Matt Murdock's super step brother, Swingin' Mike Murdock? Any chance that he might make his way back to the Big Apple for a visit with his brother? JQ: Kurt, Mike wasn't actually Matt's brother, but was in fact Matt himself, in a third identity. It was a complicated way of keeping his identity a secret that only really worked in the 1960s, and became a running bit that Matt kept alive for months (Foggy Nelson and Karen Page thought that swingin' Matt—who always wore shades because he was so cool—was secretly Daredevil, rather than his "brother" Matt.) After a long absence, we last saw Swingin' Mike Murdock during his seminal airport scene in DAREDEVIL #87 where he, uh, was about to board a plane. And while we have no plans for Swingin' Mike in the immediate future, you never know what sinister ideas are percolating in the dark mind of writer Ed Brubaker, so stay tuned... Boy who ever thought comics where silly kid's stuff really needs to think again. John asks: What happened to Dr. Strange? I know he had that whole freak-out thing and he had to leave to relearn everything, but what about a mini-series about what he's going through? We Dr. Strange fans miss the floating cape! JQ: Never fear, John, Doc's going to be floating back to prominence shortly in the pages of NEW AVENGERS.

MARVEL ZOMBIES
3 #3

MARVEL ZOMBIES
3 #2 preview art
by Kev Walker

MARVEL ZOMBIES
3 #2 preview art
by Kev Walker

MARVEL ZOMBIES
3 #2 preview art
by Kev Walker

Gary the Mechanix asks: Hey Joe! Are there major plans for Jocasta? We're seeing her in MARVEL ZOMBIES, AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE, and in that preview art you showed us. Is this subliminal, or am I just crazy? JQ: Yes, Gary, you'll be seeing more of Jocasta in the months to come, both in AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE and MARVEL ZOMBIES 3. And eventually, in MIGHTY AVENGERS!

SUPER HERO
SQUAD: HERO UP!
#1 (Heroes
variant)

SUPER HERO
SQUAD: HERO UP!
#1 (Villains
variant)

Jess-eye-ca wants to know: So I saw these pictures of Marvel heroes and villains that look like those Super Hero Squad toys. Are there more toys coming out, or are you making a book with them? JQ: If I were you, Jess, I'd be keeping my eyes open for a comic based on the fantastic Hasbro Super Hero Squad toy set! We have big plans for the little guys.

Super Hero
Squad poster

I R VENOM asks: What's up with Original Sin? We got Xavier, Logan and Daken. How much of Wolverine's past is there left to explore, and can we expect the three of these guys to work together? Don't they have a rocky history? JQ: Their rocky history is the whole fun of it, I R VENOM. DRAMA! As for whether there's still parts of Wolvie's past to explore…Dude, he's REALLY old. REALLY REALLY old. I mean, I sometimes wonder when my Great Aunt will run out of stories, but she never does. Wolverine is the same way. Just think of the hell that Daken's kids will go through around the Holidays.

WOLVERINE:
ORIGINS #29

WOLVERINE:
ORIGINS #29
preview art by
Mike Deodato

WOLVERINE:
ORIGINS #29
preview art by
Mike Deodato

WOLVERINE:
ORIGINS #29
preview art by
Mike Deodato

WOLVERINE:
ORIGINS #30

X-MEN:
LEGACY #217

X-MEN:
LEGACY #218

[Still waiting for the return of] The Age of Orton asks: Joe, does the INVINCIBLE IRON MAN series tie into SECRET INVASION? I'm loving writer Matt Fraction's work on the book, but I'm also dying to know what's going on with Tony Stark in SI. Is INVINCIBLE IRON MAN ever going to touch SECRET INVASION? Or is the book treated more like CAPTAIN AMERICA or THOR, where the characters appear in the event books, but the events don't necessarily tie into those titles? JQ: Orton, lets go to the source and ask Mr. Fraction himself.

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #7

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #7
preview art by
Salvador Larroca

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #7
preview art by
Salvador Larroca

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #7
preview art by
Salvador Larroca

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #7
preview art by
Salvador Larroca

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #7
preview art by
Salvador Larroca

MF: SI happens between our first arc, "The Five Nightmares," and the second arc, with a title so secret that I can only tell you the initials, which are "WMW." Because Tony and the Avengers are such pivotal players in SI, and are on-page for so much of that story, I couldn't figure out a way to tell an Iron Man tale within SECRET INVASION that you WEREN'T getting in the main SI book. And, too, we launched the same month as SI and needed to be accommodating to folks that were coming in from movie theaters; to dump brand new comics-readers into a multi-part, multi-month crossover seemed like a bad idea. That said, "WMW" absolutely reflects the new status quo both in the Marvel Universe and in Tony Stark's life, and will be central to "Dark Reign." The events of SECRET INVASION absolutely inform and influence where Tony's going for the next year. We may not have had a tie-in title, but the ramifications are inescapable… Mikey L. asks: Editor Nick Lowe said that 2009 "the year of returns" at Marvel. Any chance we could get a few hints on who? Maybe a redhead? Maybe some villains? Maybe the Westchester mansion? JQ: Mikey, Nick is standing right here, he just brought me my coffee. NL: Hey Mikey! I stand by my statement. Red hair is a pretty good clue. You'll see some villains. No mansion return, though. The X-Men are in San Francisco for keeps.

UNCANNY
X-MEN #503

UNCANNY
X-MEN #504

UNCANNY
X-MEN #505

Lord Celsius asks: Jonathan Hickman is one of my favorite writers right now. Good job picking him up! Will SECRET WARRIORS have the same feel as his other books? JQ: Celsius, yes, with the added goodness of the Marvel Universe besides. Jonathan's so gung-ho about SECRET WARRIORS that he recently turned in a broad-strokes outline for 60 issues, accompanied by flowcharts and graphs explaining the relationships between all of the various characters, heroes and villains alike! Just look at these examples!

Jonathan Hickman
charts the Marvel
Universe

A page from
the SECRET
WARRIORS
bible

This guy is clearly way smarter than any of us, and we may have to get him on another assignment just to keep him from assembling a homemade atom bomb in his spare time! George asks: Joe, I'm a longtime collector who just recently went through my longboxes to give some books to my kids. When digging through them I came across an OBNOXIO THE CLOWN VS. THE X-MEN one-shot, and various Marvel issues that had the villain Scourge in them. Now I know this is a long shot, but any chance we'll get to see these character gems in any book soon? Maybe even as a cameo/Easter egg? JQ: Sorry, George. No plans on Obnoxio or Scourge at this point. Some books are better kept in long boxes. JACK! (the true pumpkin king) asks: Where's news on Cloak and Dagger? You showed us some art from it a while ago and we haven't heard anything since. Please Joe, give us something to gnaw on. JQ: It's coming, Jack, don't you worry!

Cloak &
Dagger

It's taking a little more time than we originally thought to get things going, but when we've got characters who've been idle for so long, we want to make sure we get them right before we launch. Rest assured, writer Valerie D'Orazio is hard at work writing the series while artist Irene Flores is drawing our favorite superhero yin and yang. When the first issue hits the stands, we think it'll be something special both for old school C&D fanatics, and for those wondering what everyone is clamoring for. Learn more about The Hero Initiative, the only federally chartered charitable organization dedicated to helping comic veterans in medical or financial need at www.HeroInitiative.org. It's a chance for you to give back to the creators who gave you your dreams. Check out the official Marvel Shop for your favorite Marvel Heroes!

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