Marvel has announced that the upcoming Heroes Reborn event miniseries will be accompanied by five one-shots that take place in this new world created by the Phoenix — one where the Avengers never formed.
They’ll feature characters and themes that should be familiar to readers of both Marvel and DC; with the Squadron Supreme being the Marvel universe equivalent of the Justice League, it’s not surprising that some of these one-shots get a little “meta” in their homages.
Hyperion and the Imperial Guard by Ryan Cady and Michele Bandini will feature a younger Hyperion teaming up with the Imperial Guard. If you’re familiar with the origins of the space-faring Shi’ar heroes, you probably know that they were based on the Legion of Super-Heroes, so paring them with Hyperion when he was a boy is … yeah, someone’s having fun there.
“The teenage Hyperion’s cosmic quests with his Shi’ar friends near their end, but none of the young heroes are ready to say farewell. A quick mission in the Negative Zone sounds like the perfect coda to a storied fellowship… but what awaits Hyperion, Gladiator and the rest is horror and agony beyond their wildest nightmares,” the description reads.
Marc Bernardin and Rafael de Latorre are the creative team for Peter Parker, The Amazing Shutterbug, where a powerless Spider-Man is still a photographer for the Daily Bugle and follows around his “pal” Hyperion.
“Peter’s the biggest Hyperion fan in the world, and he also just happens to be chummy with his favorite hero thanks to a photography gig at the Daily Bugle! SURELY, nothing can go wrong, with his camera (and him) in the heart of the action… Right?” the description reads. It’s too bad Matt Fraction and Steve Lieber aren’t doing this …
Given that the X-Men have been involved in numerous alternate timeline events like Age of Apocalypse and House of M over the years, it’s a natural that they’ll be involved in this one as well. Magneto and the Mutant Force by Steve Orlando and Bernard Chang will draw on past Marvel history, as we learn the “Mutant Massacre” was not only instigated by the Squadron, but resulted in the death of Professor X.
“Years ago, Magneto and Professor X led Earth’s mutants in a final push for independence against the Squadron Supreme of America. What followed was the Squadron’s Mutant Massacre, a violent rebuttal that left mutantkind forever wounded, and Xavier dead…or so Magneto thought. Years later, Magneto discovers Xavier clinging to life in the astral plane and gathers his allies for a first-of-its-kind rescue mission to restore hope for mutantkind before it’s too late.”
It’s also notable that Magneto once led another team of mutants, with generic names like Burner, Lifter and Slither, who eventually became a team of villains called Mutant Force.
Young Squadron reunites Jim Zub and Steve Cummings with characters from Champions, but of course, they’re a bit different now. A riff on Young Justice, Young Squadron features Kid Spectrum, a.k.a. Nova/Sam Alexander; Girl Power, a.k.a. Ms. Marvel/Kamala Khan; and the all-new Falcon, a.k.a. Spider-Man/Miles Morales. Falcon is a former sidekick of Nighthawk, the Batman equivalent in Squadron Supreme, so just think of him as Robin.
“The Squadron Supreme of America have taken root in the hearts and minds of all, but none more so than a trio of youthful champions who call themselves the Young Squadron! Kid Spectrum (Sam Alexander), Girl Power (Kamala Khan), and the all-new Falcon (Miles Morales) are here to here to defend the world against all threats… or are they?” the description reads.
Finally, we have The Siege Society by Cody Ziglar and Paco Medina, which shares its initials with Suicide Squad. It will feature Varon Zemo, Hawkeye, Black Widow, Sabretooth and more taking on a new team formed by Nighthawk after he quit the Squadron Supreme.
“After the Civil War that split the Squadron Supreme in half, Nighthawk formed his own Squadron in Europe. But not all of Europe is okay with it. Baron Zemo has put together his own team to take them down and the Squadron doesn’t stand a chance.”
There’s a lot packed into the description of this one, with references to Thunderbolts, Suicide Squad, Civil War, the Outsiders and even the original Squadron Supreme miniseries by Mark Gruenwald and Paul Ryan, where Nighthawk split off from the Squadron and formed his own team. So of course this one intrigues me the most.
All five one-shots are coming in May.