The culprit has been found! Watch the video below! It's October: there's a chill in the air, the leaves are turning and available daylight becomes more scarce each day. Ah, but more importantly, October also brings us Halloween, a spooky time for one and all! This year, with an alien armada invading the Marvel Universe in Secret Invasion, a stars-spanning battle brewing in the cosmos in War of Kings and the Ultimate Universe on the verge of an epic disaster in ULTIMATUM, it's a frightening time to be in the hallowed halls of Marvel. Who do you trust? Who will rule the cosmos? Who will survive Magneto's wrath? So many questions! But this year, it seems we have an even greater mystery on our hands and we need your help, True Believers!
WHO KIDNAPPED SENIOR EDITOR MARK PANICCIA?!
It seems our erstwhile Senior Editor has gone missing. We came into the office today and there are signs that this is more than a case of the Monday blahs…This is an actual missing person's case!
With so many books under his watchful eye, no suspect can be ruled out! So we need YOUR assistance to sift through the forensic evidence, catch the culprit and find poor, missing Mark!
Each day, until Paniccia's found, you will be presented with crime scene photos and a series of clues. We will follow every lead and the next day share with you our findings and present you with the newest clues and evidence uncovered. We won't stop until we find our beloved Senior Editor!
Be sure to give us your thoughts about the case on our message boards or on Twitter!
DAY FIVE [If you missed Days One, Two, Three or FOUR, scroll down for photos and clues!]: At last, Halloween is upon us and after our long and arduous search for our missing senior editor, we have broken the case wide open! After yesterday's final round of clues, if you haven't guessed whodunit yet, watch the video below for the haunting truth!
Thank you, Mighty Marvelites, for your help in finding beloved Senior Editor Mark Paniccia and for giving happiness to the ghosts of Bullpens Past. Read WHAT IF #11 for FREE, our treat to you courtesy of Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited, and have a HAPPY HALLOWEEN!
DAY FOUR [If you missed Days One, Two or Three, scroll down for photos and clues!]: The search is taking its toll on us. We scoured everything and still have interns working away piecing together the shredded papers from Michael Horwitz's desk. And we nearly lost our heads when we found Anita Blake dusting blood-sucking vampires! Apparently, this period right before Halloween is her busiest, so she had no time to stray from her usual beat. Turns out Dazzler was in the studio, recording her album, and according to Perez Hilton, hadn't left except to have her highlights touched up to wash out the awful pink-hair phase she went through recently. That left us with Clue #12: Mary Jane! However, the versions of MJ edited by Mark are busy studying for midterms (who knew homework would be the perfect alibi? Take that as a lesson, kids!) BUT there is one other Mary Jane we hadn't thought of—so we went to the next logical place: EXECUTIVE EDITOR TOM BREVOORT'S OFFICE…! EXHIBIT H Clue #13) Tom's desk is from where many of our events are coordinated. If he is somehow involved, this could open up a much wider net of possibilities. Here lies the script for SECRET INVASION #8. Is Mark Paniccia a Skrull?! Could the answer lie in the most coveted script in the building? Clue #14) A crowbar, eh? Much like the one used by the Wrecker in the Wrecking Crew. Did Tom hire the nefarious group to off one of his own? Or did they act of their own accord? EXHIBIT I Clue #15) We didn't expect this. Tom Brevoort, in a Mary Jane wig. He claims he woke up this way, that it isn't what it looks like. He went out for a few drinks with C.B. Cebulski and Hercules and before he knew it, was way out of his league. Herc seemed to be drowning his sorrows…or guilt! The next thing he remembered, he was here. None too happy, Tom said we needed to leave because he had a lot of proofreading errors to correct. There seemed to be a lot of those this week… Clue #16) As we were leaving, Tom issued a warning. There've long been rumors, going back to the days of the original Marvel Bullpen, of a ghost, wandering the halls. A long-forgotten character, someone killed before their time, and it has followed the Merry Marvel staff from building to building. What if it was this ghost who took Mark? If so, we should be very careful. Check out Day Five and the video reveal to see how whodunnit!DAY THREE [If you missed Days One or Two, scroll down for photos and clues!]: Another sleepless night, this time as we scoured the corners of many universes under the Marvel umbrella. The Beyonder had a solid alibi—his hairdresser said the perm was setting all night & there was no way he could risk New York's air without major hair care repair. The Ultimate Universe is so embroiled in the events of Ultimatum that none of them even knew who "Mark Paniccia" was. The Agents of Atlas reminded us that Mark recently granted them their wish of an ongoing, and they will be returning to the Marvel landscape in the wake of Secret Invasion. But they DID offer us this one piece of advice—Always look for what you cannot see. Ah, Jimmy Woo, you are a riddle. The only clue left—Clue #7—was the Marvel Best-Seller's line, so we went to the office next to Mark's, where those books "live."
The scene was in total disorder! There was so much to take in. Surely we were on the right trail!
Clue #9) Assistant editor Charlie Beckerman's desk and Editorial Assistant Michael Horwitz's desks were a study in contrasts. Yes, Charlie is one of our newer editors, but could the fact that only a copy of ANITA BLAKE rested on his desk be a sign? Mark is a known insomniac. Could Anita have mistaken him for a vampire and (dare we say it) SLAIN him?!
Clue #10) Michael's desk was littered with shredded papers. He's assisting on so many books right now, it could take hours to tape all of these back together to see which printouts had been shredded and if it had been done to cover someone's tracks!
Clue #11) Michael's Dazzler Bust seems to be the only thing untouched on this desk, as though someone was sending a message. Could it be that the Disco Diva herself has taken the editor until he approves the ever-elusive pitch featuring the stunning siren?
Clue #12) Lauren Sankovitch's area, the place from which all things Ultimate spring, is filled with materials from that universe. But is there something we overlooked? A few long red hairs lay on her desk. Could Mary Jane be behind the kidnapping? And if so, which one? Ultimate MJ, or Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane MJ?!
Check out Day Four to see how Clues #9-12 panned out.
DAY TWO [If you missed Day One, scroll down for photos and clues!]: We've wiped the sleep out of our eyes from spending a restless night with still no sign of our beloved Senior Editor Mark Paniccia. We followed each of the leads and after being nearly beaten up by Rulk, ordered to just leave Green Hulk alone and having Magneto threaten to remove our fillings one by one, we found that only only Clue #3 panned out—there were indeed many titles missing from Mark's bookshelf. So, Mark's officemate, Assistant Editor Jordan White, led us to the one place we could find the source materials: The Mighty Marvel Archives! The Archives are being reorganized, so that may account for some of the disarray, but there are some things that definitely stood out! EXHIBIT C Clue #5) Secret Wars! The trade collection for Secret Wars has obviously been thumbed through... Now, while it is true an Omnibus of this mighty moment in Marvel history is on its way, the Beyonder DOES have a history of kidnapping people. Hmmm, could a certain Jheri-curled god with a flair for jumpsuits be responsible? Clue #6) The latter part of the alphabet seems to be in utter chaos. Ultimate books have been replaced with Exiles and a copy of What If Classics vol. 2 is gone… EXHIBIT D Clue #7) The Marvel Best-Sellers line is filled with mystery and who-done-its. While none are missing, they DO raise suspicion. If anyone would know how to get away with a crime, it would be one of these characters. Clue #8) The Agents of Atlas collection is slightly ajar. These mysterious heroes have been known to vanish from sight for decades. Mark brought them back for a limited series, but could they be holding him ransom for something more substantial? Check out Day Three to see how Clues #5-8 panned out.DAY ONE: We knew something was up when Mark didn't come into the office…or did he? Mark is the steward of many of our characters and it appears that one of them has grown upset at recent developments in their particular title. Our first clues come straight from Panic's office: EXHIBIT A Clue #1) In Mark's chair sits the imposing figure of the Hulk. But could the Green Goliath be so bold as to leave a literal calling card? Possibly, depending on which of the Green Goliath's many personas was in charge at the time. Clue #2) Or could it have been the Red Hulk, trying to frame his arch-nemesis? Note the abundance of red ink covering the papers on Mark's desk, as well as the fact that Mark had obviously just received a new script further chronicling the adventures of the Rage-Colored "Rulk." EXHIBIT B Clue #3) A quick glance at Mark's bookshelf shows just a sampling of titles he's worked on. It could be anyone. WHAT IF the culprit hid their tracks by removing all evidence of their past adventures? The answers could lie in these books…or be MISSING from them… Clue #4) The filing systems in here are chaotic. Many books seem to be missing, including anything pertaining to the Ultimate Universe…Hmmmm…chaos, Ultimate U…could Magneto be behind this?Did you solve the mystery? Thanks for playing along, Mighty Marvelites!