My Cup o' Joe

MyCup o' Joe: Week 48

Find out what Joe has to say about THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-GIRL, Spider-Man, Wolverine, WAR OF KINGS #2 and more!

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NEW
AVENGERS #51

DARK REIGN
ELEKTRA #1

X-FORCE/CABLE
MESSIAH
WAR PROLOGUE

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. This week's convo takes place on a mobile phone while Joe's driving to an appointment—speaker phone, of course, to keep it legal!—as it's been a busy week with a Spider-Man summit and Spider-Man musical presentation! 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!

AMAZING
SPIDER-MAN
#593

AMAZING
SPIDER-MAN
#596

AMAZING
SPIDER-MAN
#598

JM: So…busy week this week, huh? Spider-Man summit done? JQ: Yeah. It was nice, really nice, to get all the guys in the room. Mark Waid was there, Marc Guggenheim, Joe Kelly, Dan Slott, Zeb Wells, Bob Gale, Fred Van Lente and the editorial crew as well. We plotted out many, many, many months of great Spider-Man stories, about a year to a year-and-a-half. It was a blast. JM: So gimme a highlight, man. JQ: The stuff we talked about includes some possible "One More Day" stuff. And that is all I can say. Ah heck, who am I kidding, we discussed exactly when we're going to answer many of the big questions about what happen after One More Day and how it all work. I've mentioned many times in the past that only one major thing changed because of the events in OMD. The wedding never happened and we're finally going to tell you that story in an arc of Amazing. But, now I can come clean and let out a little more info as we get closer and closer to telling this story. There is a second, very big thing that didn't happen because of One More Day. I know, I suck, but I'm going to leave it there. These and many other questions will be resolved in a four-issue story arc. The downside is that because of certain things that are happening in Spidey's life, some stories were shifted for back and forth in order to have most impact and emotional resonance and this particular story looks like it will be moved to 2010. There's a creative team involved and locked in and all four scripts are in, I've seen and read them, so I know they exists. If I had my druthers I'd say lets tell this story now, but there's a better time and place. JM: Now you mentioned the writers who were involved in the summit. When you do something like this, are you planning the artists as well? Do you have specific artists pegged to the stories? Or is that a fill-in-the-blank for later? JQ: We did discuss artists a lot, but we always have to look down the road and project who's available now, who's available in six months, who's available in a year. The one ting that is very obvious to us is that because it's impossible to have on steady artist on a book that ships as frequent as this, that we're going to be dealing with many different art styles and ironically enough, I think that's become part of the fun of Amazing Spider-Man three times a month. You get so many cool looks that come in and out of the book. I think fans really get exposed to a lot of new artists, and find guys new to them who they really start to enjoy. And, aside form that, we always try and assign artists correctly to the story based on the content. You really don't want a dark, noir-styled artist on a story that might be more lighthearted, or a story that's romantic. You want to make sure the art matches the tone of the story. The same is true with pairing a writer with an artist, some work better with others, and keeping all these things in mind is part of what separates the good editors from the great editors.

AMAZING
SPIDER-MAN
#591

AMAZING
SPIDER-MAN
#592

AMAZING
SPIDER-MAN
#595

JM: Now in the here-and-now on Spidey, I guess you'll have your first bump in the title's schedule, by one week. JQ: Yeah. Amazing Spidey #591 is bumping back by one week, but there are still three issues in April, so it's a hiccup, but about as tiny as hiccups come. I'm still proud as hell with the whole crew—we did 45 consecutive issue, some of which were oversized, plus an Annual and two extras without missing by even a single week. [Artist] Phil Jimenez had to take care of some personal matters, so the five-issue "American Son" arc will be completed by different artists. Phil is still doing #595, part 1, and all the covers. Paulo Siqueira, who did #589, our recent "Spotlight on the Spot" issue, will do #596 and #598. And Marco Chechetto, who has been working on Squadron Supreme, will do #597 and #599. This will, of course, allow us to keep all on schedule for some big stuff planned for Amazing Spider-Man #600. JM: And you just got out, like minutes ago, from a Spider- Man musical meeting, right? JQ: Yeah. There was a great presentation by the producers, and Julie Taymor, Bono and the Edge were all there. They brought in five singers to sing some of the choice selections from the musical, showed off some of the pieces from the set design…and it was amazing! They showed a demonstration video of how they want to handle the web-swinging and the wall-crawling and it's just amazing how Spider-Man will be literally breaking the plane of the stage! It is…an unbelievable endeavor. Really. And I think they nailed it with everything they showed us and everything they want to do. It will be like nothing you've ever seen on the stage before. It's an amazingly huge production. Julie Taymor is thoroughly invested in it, and you can really hear the passion in her voice. And it was fun to see Bono and the Edge play off each other, talking about the music and talking about Spider-Man as a character. It was a very pleasant 90 minutes. Time flew by. Let me add, that I had no idea Peter Parker had such a beautiful singing voice! JM: I gotta tell ya, man—I'm intrigued as heck by this Wednesday Comics thing DC is doing with the newspaper-style strips. You have any thoughts as regards? JQ: You know, it's interesting to see what they'll do trying the format. It's no surprise to me that Mark Chiarello is behind it. He's an amazingly creative guy, and really, one of the genuinely nice guys in comics. If anyone else was involved with it, I might be like, "Ugh. No Groan." But since it's Mark, I'm sure it'll look beautiful and it'll read great. And I hope it does well. The format's kinda fun. Y'know, there was something I was toying with—not for Marvel but just personally—that was going to be in a Sunday strip format, but I put that aside for a while. It was inspired by the oversize Little Nemo in Slumberland Sunday's collection by Sunday Press, which by the way is an absolutely gorgeous book. So when I heard this, I also thought. "Oh, cool. That's great—it'll be nice that someone else is using the format." And again, with Chiarello involved, I'm sure it'll be great. By the way, Chiarello is one heck of an illustrator who I wish would grace our industry with more of his work, nudge-nudge-wink-wink. JM: From time to time, people will try different formats for comics. I remember as a kid in the '70s, I thought the Treasury Editions were super-cool. I remember Vertigo did a book a few years ago called Vertical that was in some crazy staple-at-the-top flip-up format. Is there anything out-of-the-ordinary you're hankering to try? JQ: Well, I don't know if you remember, but very early in my tenure as editor-in-chief, we did a couple books in what we called the "Marvelscope" format, which had staples at the top of the comic, and opened up in a very widescreen format. We only did a few books like that, because the problem was when you put them in most comic stores' racks, they tended to flop over.

NEW X-MEN
ANNUAL

It's funny you bring it up, 'cause we've actually revisited the Marvelscope idea recently, and I've spoken to a creator or two, both writers and artists, who I think would be perfect for the format. So we're investigating the possibility again, but doing it in a way that holds up on the stands and the shelves better. We're definitely looking into it, 'cause we think there's some value in it. There are some stories that would really work well in that format. I mean, can you imagine if [writer] Mark Millar and [artist] Bryan Hitch would have done Ultimates like that right from the start? It would have been pretty wild! And yeah, I was a huge fan of those oversized Treasury Editions! I thought they were the coolest things on the planet when I was a kid. But things like that generally don't sell well, because there's no good place to put them. If you look at a retailer's wall of comics, you usually see, in one way or form, a bunch of slots, a bunch of pockets. And they're usually pretty uniform. And each one of those spaces needs to pay the rent. I love those Treasury Edition comics, but they usually don't pay the rent too well for comic retailers. JM: Well, you can obviously do things for artistic reasons, or commercial reasons. But the default position always seems to be the "standard comic book," which has remained largely unchanged since 1935 or so. Do you think other formats can be commercially viable? JQ: There might be. People have tried different things that might be novel and folks would dig for a little while, but sooner or later, it all reverts to the same way of doing it. We're tooled to do it that way. Printers, distributors, retailers, creators, we're just tooled to make them at this current size. I think the next big commercial format will be the digital format. It's paradoxical, because I think we all "know that," but we don't know what form it will take. Thousands of people are experimenting with different formats and different techniques in digital. And I'm sure we'll all continue experimenting for the next few years until the apple falls on someone's head and they figure it out.

THE
SPECTACULAR
SPIDER-GIRL

JM: A perfect segue to my next question. Spider-Girl lives yet again, this time as digital-first, print second. What's impetus behind both continuing on with the character, and the change in distribution/format? JQ: Yep, "Mayday" Parker lives again. THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-GIRL #1 debuts Wednesday, April 15 as a digital-first with Tom DeFalco writing, Ron Frenz doing the art (Tom and Ron launched Spider-Girl) and Sal Buscema inking. The impetus is simple. Spider-Girl's fan base is rather substantial and there are many more stories to tell in her universe. With the positive response we've gotten from our readers for our other digital exclusives so far, we thought this well-established character with a built in group of fans would be an outstanding addition to the line-up of digital firsts we're offering. JM: Is doing a comic in this fashion "cheaper" for you? Well, obviously, yeah—there's no print cost. But what about the revenue side? Where's the money come from to make it a worthwhile proposition for Marvel? JQ: The costs to make the comic—before it goes to print—are the same as any print comic. We do not skimp on production values for our digital products in any way. They're produced with the same level of care, consideration and choice of talent. As for the revenue, the money comes from a couple of ways. By enhancing the quality of our offerings in Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited, more people subscribe to the service—which now offers an ever-growing collection of 5,000 digital comics, new exclusives every Wednesday and additions to the "backlist" every single weekday amounting to dozens of freshly digitized comics every week. Additionally, the exclusives will see print in either single edition comics or in trades and that, obviously, also helps monetize them. JM: To what extent do you have it amortized? Does Marvel have the math effectively saying "An original comic on our Website is worth 'dollars X' to us?" JQ: The short answer is yes. If we didn't have the math telling us what the comic was worth to us—that wouldn't be the most prudent of business moves. JM: Aces. Reader questions? JQ: Yeah, good idea. MCOJ 12 Stephen asks: Joe, how accurate can you say the ICv2.com sales numbers are? Did Amazing Spider-Man #583 break all those records? And we know Hulk and She-Hulk will be there, but will the Red Hulk be showing up in Planet Skaar at all? JQ: Icv2's numbers tend to skew on the low side, but overall we're EXTREMELY happy with the issue. We invited Red Hulk to the Planet Skaar show but he's going to be busy headlining a special five-part crossover in his title. We can't say much except that it pits a special handpicked team against a very dangerous group of mutants!

HULK #13

PLANET
SKAAR

MacMadness asks: With all the buzz surrounding the Wolverine movie, are there any plans for the Wolverine book after writer Mark Millar's run? I'm loving the "Old Man Logan" story and artists Steve McNiven is kicking all sorts of ass. Will Wolverine just end and continue with Weapon X? JQ: Glad you're loving "Old Man Logan," MacMadness! Here's the deal with the Wolverine book—the conclusion of "Old Man Logan" is going to be in a giant-sized special (kinda like we did with the end of the Whedon/Cassaday Astonishing X-Men). So Wolverine #73 and #74 are special issues, each one featuring a story by Jason Aaron and Adam Kubert AND a story by Daniel Way and Tommy Lee Edwards—part one of each story is in #73 and part two of each is in #74. Now that's pretty big news!

WOLVERINE
#73

WOLVERINE
#73 70th
Anniversary
Variant
Cover

But the REALLY big news is with #75, Wolverine is no more—the title becomes Dark Wolverine and tells the story of charter Dark Avengers member Daken (a.k.a. Logan's son!) as he claims his father's mantle and tries to show the world he's a better Wolverine than Logan ever could be. The series is co-written by Daniel Way, of Wolverine Origins fame, and Marjorie Liu, New York Times bestselling author and writer of the critically acclaimed NYX: No Way Home. And the art is by none other than Giuseppe Camuncoli, who just finished wowing America in X-Infernus. Daken is like Logan…minus any sense of boundaries. The world had better beware.

WOLVERINE
#75

WOLVERINE
#75 Variant
Cover by
Marko
Djurdjevic

WOLVERINE
#75 Version 2

But if you're worried about getting your fix of the original Canucklehead, well, don't—you can still find him every month in Wolverine: Weapon X and Wolverine Origins, plus more team books than I can remember. Also, just in time for the movie—don't miss the very special black-and-white Rampaging Wolverine special in April—48 pages jam-packed with black-and-white thrills! Three all-new comics by Joshua Hale Fialkov & Paco Diaz Luque; Christopher Yost & Mateus Santolouco; and Ted McKeever, plus an extra-special prose story by Dark Tower's Robin Furth, illustrated by the illustrious Nelson. It's non-stop down-and-dirty Wolverine action!

RAMPAGING
WOLVERINE

RAMPAGING
WOLVERINE
Art

RAMPAGING
WOLVERINE
Art

RAMPAGING
WOLVERINE
Art

RAMPAGING
WOLVERINE
Art

RAMPAGING
WOLVERINE
Art

The Harbringer asks: Does Dr. Doom have big things in store in the Marvel U? With accomplices like Namor, Loki and even Dracula, it looks like Doom's Day is near! JQ: Harbinger, where isn't Doctor Doom going to be appearing during the course of the next year? He's in Fantastic Four, he's in Dark Avengers, he's in Thor, he's in Black Panther, he's in Captain Britain & MI:13—and that's just the beginning of his Marvel world tour! (Frankly, it makes one wonder if some of these guys might not be Doombots in disguise.) Doom's also featured in the Dark Reign: The Cabal one-shot, in a story written by upcoming Fantastic Four writer Jonathan Hickman. So if you've been hungering for all things Doom, 2009 looks to be just the year for you!

DARK REIGN:
THE CABAL

The Alchemist asks: Hey Joe, What's up with the steampunk revolution? The Spider-Man Noir book has Spidey looking kinda steampunkish. Are you a fan? When do we get a steampunk line of comics similar to the Noir one? JQ: I don't know from steampunk, but Marko Djurdjevic created that amazing Spider-Man Noir look taking into account a lot of influences, from the fashions of the era to the airman's uniform and other fabrics a boy like Peter Parker would have used to make his own costume in the '30s—and obviously he pulled off a spectacular job. But hey, if you liked Spider-Man Noir, and if you like steampunk, keep your eyes open for news in the future…you may yet get to see an interesting take on another classic Spider-Man rogue or two.

SPIDER-MAN
NOIR Art

MIKE asks: Mr. Quesada, I've noticed that some of Marvel's comics contain a credit for "production." For example, Joe Sabino was credited with "production" in Uncanny X-Men #504. What exactly does a comic "producer" do? Also, why do some comics feature "producers" while others don't? JQ: The Production credit highlights the work of the specific Bullpen member who put that particular issue together, marrying the color artwork and the digital lettering files into a seamless whole, and taking care of any last-minute corrections or mistakes. Our Bullpen team works miracles each and every week in terms of getting your comics out the door and to the printer, so this is our small way of recognizing the effort and attention to detail they give to each book they work on. And if you study it, you'll find that the books that don't carry a Production credit are ones in which the creator credits for the issue run within the body of the story somewhere, rather than on the Recap Page. This is because, when those credits are done as part of the lettering, they're put together well in advance of when we know which Bullpen member will be working on that issue, so it would be very difficult to add in a credit for them in those cases (but we appreciate their work on those issues just as much!) Andrew says: Hey, Joe. I've been lovin' on Daredevil since you and Kevin Smith relaunched him back in the day, and each progressive run has just gotten better and better. I'm super-excited about Andy Diggle taking over as the new writer, but do we get any news about the art on the book? Is Michael Lark staying, or will it be somebody new? JQ: Hey Andrew! Glad to hear that you've been digging DD! If you thought that Brian Bendis left Ed Brubaker with a helluva cliffhanger, wait until you see what Ed's got planned for Andy!

DAREDEVIL #500

No announcements yet about the art team—it's top secret for now—but how about a nod of the cap to the terrific job Michael Lark has done over the past three years? Michael's work has been beautiful, and with guest artists such as David Aja, Lee Weeks and Clay Mann, we know DD fans have come to expect amazing artwork from the title, and we don't expect they'll be disappointed. Hang tight, we'll have an announcement coming up! James asks: Hey Joe, with all of the success that the Cosmic branch of the Marvel Universe has been seeing with Annihilation, Conquest and War of Kings, is there any chance that Marvel may consider putting all of its cosmic characters into a family such as The Avengers, Spider-Man, or the X-Men? Also, if War of Kings is as successful as it seems it will be, is there any chance for an ongoing Starjammers book? The more cosmic books the better in my opinion! JQ: Hey James! Glad to hear you're enjoying all the crazy sci-fi action that's going on in our reinvigorated cosmic corner of the Marvel U.! Over the past few years we've carefully launched new titles such as Nova and Guardians of the Galaxy, waiting for the combination of the right talent and the right launch pad. Right now we're seeing which characters rise to the top of the War of Kings—it could be the Starjammers, it could be the Inhumans, it could be the Imperial Guard—it all depends on who you ask for the most…and who survives the War!

WAR OF
KINGS #2

WAR OF
KINGS #2
Interiors

WAR OF
KINGS #2
Interiors

WAR OF
KINGS #2
Interiors

WAR OF
KINGS #2
Interiors

WAR OF
KINGS #2
Interiors

WAR OF
KINGS #2
Interiors

InfamousMB asks: Hey Joe, I've seen that quite a few characters are having their own little Dark Reign mini-series. What are the chances of Namor getting his own? I'm very curious to see what is up with him and the Atlantean army since they left home. JQ: Infamous, you'll be seeing Namor in a bunch of places in the next few months, including a couple surprising ones that it's too soon to mention. But while we've tossed around ideas for a possible Namor Dark Reign project, at this moment there isn't one in the cards. Still, for a hint as to Namor's next move against the Dark Reign backdrop, check out the Dark Reign: The Cabal one-shot in May, which offers a tale of the Sub-Mariner as one of its five features. And next week he battles Tony Stark in Invincible Iron Man!

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #12

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #12
Interiors

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #12
Interiors

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #12
Interiors

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #12
Interiors

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #12
Interiors

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #12
Interiors

INVINCIBLE
IRON MAN #12
Interiors

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