‘King in Black’ expands its kingdom

Marvel announces several tie-in titles for the upcoming Venom-centric crossover.

Symbiotes are back in fashion this winter, as Marvel’s King in Black event stretches its gooey black tentacles out to characters from Daredevil to Spider-Gwen to Valkyrie.

In case you need a refresher, Knull is the god of the symbiotes, and in King in Black, he’ll be taking on not just Venom, but the Avengers, the X-Men, the Hulk and more, as he heads for Earth. Now Marvel has revealed details on what existing and new titles will help support the event.

Here’s a rundown of what to expect:

Planet of the Symbiotes #1

In this three-issue series, “all-star talents join forces on stories that will set up key moments in the event,” according to Marvel.com, and will feature other symbiotes like Scream and Carnage in stories by Clay McLeod Chapman, Guiu Vilanova, Frank Tieri and Danilo Beyruth.

King in Black: Black Knight

Dane Whitman is headlining a one-shot that ties into the event, from Simon Spurrier and Jesus Saiz. Here’s how Marvel describes the title:

As the endless horde of symbiote dragons darken the skies of Shanghai, Black Knight will have to overcome the growing evil within himself while grappling with surprising discoveries about his past. This epic issue will introduce new readers to the fan-favorite hero and reveal the bright future he has in the Marvel Universe, all amidst a vigorous battle that will go down in Marvel history!

“I’ve always had a soft spot for the Black Knight,” Spurrier told Marvel.com. “On paper he’s a splendid mashup of renaissance-fair fantasy and blood-drenched horror, somehow managing to hold his own alongside the bright, sciencey heroes of the Marvel Universe. It should be an awkward fit — and maybe it is. Maybe that awkwardness is what really sings about this character. A troubled anachronism trying to hide his dysfunction behind swashbuckly snark, whose greatest weapon (the fabled Ebony Blade!) is also the source of all his trouble. See, it’s a bit… well… murdery. In a ‘thirsts for the blood of the living’ sort of way.”

King in Black: Gwenom VS Carnage

Seanan McGuire returns to tell a new story about Spider-Gwen, aka Ghost-Spider, aka Gwenom. She’s joined by artist Flaviano for three-issue series that pits Gwen vs. Carnage.

“I could not be feeling better or more excited right now! You can expect a lot of swinging (and kicking) high, yelling loud, and general chaos,” McGuire told Marvel.com. “I’ve missed Gwen so much, this is really a gift.”

Thunderbolts

A new rendition of the Thunderbolts will debut in January from the creative team of Matthew Rosenberg and Juan Ferreyra.

“Thunderbolts is one of the best concepts Marvel has ever produced. It’s a book that constantly reinvents itself in fun ways and it’s a real honor to carry on that tradition,” Rosenberg told SyFy Wire. “I think we have a really wild premise and unique team, and letting them cut loose during the epic events of King In Black is going to be a really fun trial by fire for them.”

This new team is assembled by NYC Mayor Wilson Fisk, aka the Kingpin, and includes Taskmaster, Rhino, Mr. Fear, Star and Batroc the Leaper. It’ll run for three issues.

KING IN BLACK: RETURN OF THE VALKYRIES

Jason Aaron and Torunn Grønbekk team up with artist Nina Vakueva for a four-issue miniseries that has Jane Foster putting together a new army of Valkyries to battle Knull.

Several of Marvel’s regular January titles will also tie into the event, including Daredevil, Deadpool, Savage Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy and the new X-title, S.W.O.R.D. You can read more about them here.

And if you’d like to know more about the event itself, creators Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman talked about it as part of the New York Comic Con Metaverse event, and you can watch the replay of their panel here.

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