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San Diego Comic-Con 2009

SDCC 2009: Marvel Adventures Super Heroes

Writer Paul Tobin prepares to steer MARVEL ADVENTURES SUPER HEROES in an all-new direction

For all the latest news, announcements and interviews, plus live panel blogging, video features and much more, visit Marvel.com's San Diego Comic-Con 2009 Hub Page!


By Jim Beard

This November, writer Paul Tobin takes MARVEL ADVENTURES SUPER HEROES down an exciting new path. With issue #17, along with artists Ig Guara and Ronan Cliquet, Tobin embarks on a quest to build the perfect all-new cast, a continuing cast of heroes who will grow together as the series reaches even greater heights.

"[This] book has always been about experimentation for me," says Tobin. "First we went with some fairly over-the-top stories; then I was able to play with Doctor Strange, a character I truly love. After that, I've been grabbing characters I love, teaming them with some big names, crafting stories

Iron Man sketch
from that aspect. Now, at this point, editor Nate Cosby and I wanted to play with a sweeping arc, something that we could build over the course of several issues. And the Avengers fit the bill."

Seven Marvel heroes will meet in issue #17 and begin to lay the groundwork for a Marvel Adventures saga the likes of which the line has yet to witness. Tobin's task of assembling a new Avengers team presented itself with challenges and more than a little potential for a good time.

"This is an area where we had a lot of fun," notes the writer. "Nate sent out questionnaires to half of Marvel's editorial and creative staff, with only one question: 'What seven characters would you choose if you were forming the Avengers?'

"In the end, we started with three core characters that we feel have to be on the team: Captain America, Thor and Iron Man. And we wanted a robot of some sort, and after running through a few possibilities we settled on the Vision. Next came Nova, because we wanted a character with some cosmic abilities, and one who was new to the super hero business, but still a bit of a wise-cracker."

At this juncture, panic reportedly set in when Tobin realized he'd filled five of the seven spots and still had no female characters in his amazing assemblage of Avengers.

Black Widow sketch
"Which is bad because it restricts the type of stories I can tell, and tensions I can build, and also because I love working with female characters," he claims. So, I put my foot down and said the final two spots had to be women, even though I really wanted the Hulk.

"So, instead of the Hulk, we ended up with the Black Widow. The Widow was a perfect choice for the team, because I wanted a character with some mystery, some allure, and someone who wasn't a powerhouse, because team balance is important in storytelling. Also, the Widow can be cruel at times, due to her world view, and that's something that can really add depth to a story as well."

The seventh and last member of what's set to become perhaps the most unique of all Avengers rosters may come as something of a surprise to those who know their way around the Marvel Universe: the Invisible Woman.

"Yeah, she's part of the team" says Tobin. "Nate and I both laughed [the idea] off because she's so much a part of the Fantastic Four that it seemed too strange to have her step away from the Baxter Building. Soon, though, that turned into a positive, because she's this major character that's only ever been seen in one specific light, and now we're showing a different side of her. And it's been really fun. And she's a natural challenge to Cap's leadership, so that's been interesting to script. I made my choice early on who would lead the team, but as most writers know, the script and the characters often take on their own lives, and make their own decisions, so...we'll see."

Vision sketch
Tobin also insists that in his MARVEL ADVENTURES SUPER HEROES stories the "'soft' moments are as important as the explosions," creating the unique blend of storytelling that characterizes the Marvel Adventures line.

"So there will be themes of the characters getting to know each other, and a possible romance, and in the first issue an entire town gets wiped out, so the stakes are a bit higher than in the normal Marvel Adventures title," he previews. "I'm currently seeing this world as a coherent whole, so I'm playing for keeps here and that's going to be evident in the stories.

"I love the sense that anything can happen. I can shoot from the hip as a writer, knock down a few walls and see characters in different lights. The Marvel Adventures universe has the quickest pulse of any of Marvel's veins, and I find that vibrancy addictive as both a writer, and a reader."


For all the latest news, announcements and interviews, plus live panel blogging, video features and much more, visit Marvel.com's San Diego Comic-Con 2009 Hub Page!

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      Invisible Woman on the Avengers? Now that's a cool idea!!!