In comics, there are many storylines that, for one reason or another, never saw an ending. Rick Veitch’s Swamp Thing comes to mind, as does the Kevin Smith-written Daredevil/Bullseye: The Target. And of course, there’s Miracleman, in particular the story from Neil Gaiman and Mark Buckingham, “The Silver Age,” that came to a halt when Eclipse Comics went under.
It’s been almost 30 years since Miracleman #24, the second chapter of “The Silver Age,” arrived in stores, but now that news Marvel teased earlier this week (and the news we’ve been waiting to hear since Marvel revealed they had the rights to Miracleman) is out — Gaiman and Buckingham will finish the story they started in Miracleman: The Silver Age.
“We’re back! And after 30 years away it is both thrilling and terrifying,” Buckingham said. “Neil and I have had these stories in our heads since 1989 so it is amazing to finally be on the verge of sharing them with our readers.”
Here’s the description from Marvel: Young Miracleman — the lost member of the Miracleman Family — is back! His last memories were of a 1963 world of joy and innocence. Now, he’s been thrust into the 21st century, where his best friends have become gods and monsters. Where can a hero from a simpler time call home in this brave new world?
“I have pushed myself to my limit to craft something special for these issues,” Buckingham said. “Cinematic in approach, clean and elegant, drawing on the best of my own style but also paying homage to the exceptional talents of all who came before us, whose unique visions have shaped this ground-breaking series over 40 years, and the 1950’s Marvelman foundations on which it was built.”
So, for those new to Miracleman, especially the Gaiman/Buckingham run, you’re probably wondering where to begin. I recounted the sorted history of Miracleman, who used to be known as Marvelman, in my post earlier this week. The character was first published in the UK, then later revived for Warrior, then was imported into the U.S. by Eclipse. If you’re wanting to catch up, here are a few opportunities to do so …
If you’re looking for those early Mick Anglo Marvelman stories from the 1950s, Marvel reprinted many of them in trade paperback format over the past several years, and even released some of them as single issues. You can find them listed on Marvel’s website.
For the more modern take, Marvel will release an omnibus in September collecting Alan Moore’s work on the character. It includes material from Warrior 1-18 and 20-21; Miracleman 1, 3, 6-16; Marvelman Special, material from A1 #11 and All-New Miracleman Annual #1. That annual came out in 2014 and was published by Marvel, with stories by Grant Morrison and Joe Quesada, and Peter Milligan and Michael Allred.
The in October comes Miracleman by Gaiman & Buckingham Book 1: The Golden Age. This collects the first storyline by the duo, which ran in Miracleman #17-22.
After that, you’ll be caught up for The Silver Age. Per Marvel, they’ll reprint issues #23 and #24, as “remastered editions” with new artwork and bonus material. And then comes issue #25, which was completed but never published (but pieces have popped up here and there over the years). After that, who knows — Gaiman and Buckingham had originally planned for their story to be a trilogy, ending with “The Dark Age,” so maybe we’ll get that one as well.
For grins, here’s the original cover for Miracleman #24, by the wonderful Barry Windsor-Smith:
It came out almost 30 years ago and left us hanging, but hey — better late than never, right? Let’s do Big Numbers next …