Mail Call | More on Al Ewing + Ram V’s symbiotic relationship on ‘Venom’

Check out news, announcements and previews from Image, DC, BOOM! Studios and more.

Mail Call is a roundup of the announcements we’ve received from comics publishers in our mailboxes recently that we haven’t already covered. Hit the links for more information.

When Venom returns in a new series from Marvel later this fall, it’ll be co-written by Al Ewing and Ram V. Each writer, it turns out, will be writing a separate character in the series, as the book focuses both on Eddie Brock and his son Dylan.

“How me and Ram are working together—we’re a band, essentially. Every issue is a new single, every trade is an album, and Eddie and Dylan are our instruments,” Ewing told Marvel.com. “They’re similar, but they make different notes, produce different sounds, build different stories. And for a while—so you should get used to it now—we’re going to be taking turns in the spotlight, playing Dylan songs or Eddie songs, while the other band member stays in the background. As each new single comes out, you’ll see how it fits together, forms one big concept album—or maybe a symphony. And then, when we’re ready, we bring all the instruments in for the crescendo—and that’s going to be something to hear.”

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Mail Call | Marvel’s Free Comic Book Day titles

Get ready for Free Comic Book Day, which is coming up this Saturday. Also check out news from DC, Image Comics, IDW, AfterShock Comics and more.

Mail Call is a roundup of the announcements we’ve received from comics publishers in our mailboxes recently that we haven’t already covered. Hit the links for more information.

Marvel’s Free Comic Book Day offerings for this year have been somewhat confusing — at one point Chip Zdarsky was mentioned as contributing — but the company has put out a press release detailing what you specifically can from them this coming Saturday.

Marvel will have two books, as previously announced — Spider-Man/Venom and Hulk/Avengers, both of which will tease upcoming storylines for the four titles represented.

As previously reported, Amazing Spider-Man is getting a new creative team AND a new person under the mask, as infamous clone Ben Reilly returns to take on the mantle of Spider-Man. One of the new writers of Amazing, Zeb Wells, will team with artist Patrick Gleason for a story featuring Reilly as Spider-Man. It will be accompanied by a Venom story by the new creative team of Ram V., Al Ewing and Bryan Hitch “in a glimpse that will show you just how twisted their upcoming run will be.”

Then, in the second title, Donny Cates and Ryan Ottley will present a look at their upcoming run on Hulk. And Jason Aaron teams up with Iban Coello to “present the dangerous new threat that the Avengers will face in the next arc of his hit Avengers run.”

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Marvel announces new creative teams for ‘Hulk,’ ‘Venom’

Donny Cates and Ryan Ottley will launch a new Hulk title in November, as Al Ewing, Ram V and Bryan Hitch take on Venom.

With Al Ewing and Joe Bennett’s run on Immortal Hulk coming to close AND Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman wrapping up their run on Venom, Marvel has announced their plans for both titles, which will relaunch in the fall.

The Hulk will relaunch in a new title simply called Hulk, by Cates and Amazing Spider-Man artist Ryan Ottley. Writers Al Ewing and Ram V, meanwhile, will tag-team on Venom, with art by Bryan Hitch.

“Marvel just gave me the keys to the strongest one there is,” Cates told Marvel.com. “Haha… oh boy. You guys are just not ready for this. You’re about to find out what happens when Ryan Ottley and I get angry… and guess what? Well… pretty sure you’re gonna like us a lot when we’re angry.”

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Hulk, Spider-Man and more headline Marvel’s 2021 Free Comic Book Day titles

Jason Aaron, Chip Zdarsky, Greg Smallwood and more will contribute to this year’s offerings from the House of Ideas.

Marvel has shared the covers and a few more details on their two 2021 Free Comic Book Day titles, which between the two of them will include stories featuring the Avengers, Hulk, Venom and Spider-Man.

Marvel’s gold title, Avengers/Hulk, features a cover by Ryan Ottley:

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Forward into the Past: Marvel solicitations for April 2021

Carla Hoffman dives deep into what to expect from Marvel in April.

Let’s take a moment, Dear Reader, to look forward to the future.  I know, it’s been a while since we’ve indulged in this sort of thing, the idea that the next few months could be predictable enough to make plans accordingly, rather than surviving by the seat of our pants.  But just in case the aliens don’t land, wild boars don’t mutate and dominate the East Coast, or that the comics publishing business won’t go belly up in a matter of weeks and lock down all new content from our humble shelves, let’s look forward into the past at the solicitations of April 2021 from Marvel Comics.

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What Are You Reading? | ‘King in Black,’ ‘Department of Truth’ and more

See what the Smash Pages crew has been reading lately.

Welcome to What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at what the Smash Pages crew has been reading lately. In this edition, we talk about King in Black, X-Factor, James Tynion IV and more.

Let us know what you read this week in the comments or on social media.

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‘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:

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What Are You Reading? | ‘Pulp,’ ‘Amazing Spider-Man,’ ‘Hedra’ and more

See what the Smash Pages crew has been reading lately.

Welcome to What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at what the Smash Pages crew has been reading lately — including comics from the past, present and future.

Let us know what you read this week in the comments or on social media.

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Oh, Knull: Venom takes the spotlight in December’s ‘King in Black’

Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman bring the god of the symbiotes to Earth for a showdown with the heroes of the Marvel universe.

Fans of Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman’s run on Venom have known that “Knull is coming” for quite sometime, and now Marvel has revealed when exactly he’ll arrive — in King in Black, which starts in December.

Knull — which means “Fuck” in Swedish — 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 far as event books go, this is the coolest, darkest, most heavy metal, Cthulhu dark horror thing I’ve ever been able to do,” Cates said in an announcement video. “I still can’t believe that Marvel is letting us go as dark and scary as we’re going.”

You can watch the video below, featuring Cates and Stegman talking about the book.

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Marvel’s 2020 FCBD titles will arrive in July

With no new date for Free Comic Book Day scheduled yet, Marvel has scheduled when their titles will be sent to retailers.

Marvel has announced plans to release their 2020 Free Comic Book Day titles in July.

Originally targeted for release in May as a part of Free Comic Book Day, Marvel’s two books — along with every other title that was going to be offered to fans for free as a part of the annual event –were delayed when Diamond Comics Distributors announced that FCBD would be postponed this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Diamond has not announced a new date for the FCBD yet, and with Marvel’s books offering “a first look at some of Marvel’s biggest upcoming events,” it makes sense they’d want to get their two books out there before these “game-changing” stories start.

Their two titles, and their new release dates, are:

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Marvel’s ‘The End’ returns to tell the final stories of Captain Marvel, Venom and more

Marvel revives its line of specials that detail the final stories of characters like Miles Morales, Deadpool and Captain America.

It’s been quite awhile since Marvel released one of their The End specials, where they tell a What If? style story about the end of a character’s career, but that all changes next year. Marvel announced at the New York Comic Con this weekend plans for five new one-shots that will see several characters reach the end of the line.

Get ready to be depressed with the “final” stories for:

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‘Avengers Dismember’: Wolverine, Conan join the ‘Savage Avengers’

Gerry Duggan and Mike Deodato Jr. bring together Marvel’s ‘badasses’ this May.

A new “unsanctioned” group of Avengers will slice and dice their way into comics in May, as Marvel has announced Savage Avengers by the creative team of Gerry Duggan and Mike Deodato Jr.

The Savage Avengers’ members will include Conan, Wolverine, Venom, Elektra, Brother Voodoo and Punisher.

“It has to be something that visually makes sense to you, and I think it does,” Duggan, who is also writing Savage Sword of Conan for Marvel, told Entertainment Weekly. “Mike Deodato Jr. is illustrating this book in both worlds. We envisioned a threat, a magical green zone where the evil wizards of Conan’s world are trading spells with the Hand in Japan. Conan is on a very Conan-like mission; he’s heard a tale of an amulet so he’s chasing it, and the evil magic sorcerers are doing something that would be a Marvel Avengers problem. It feels like we have found some very fertile ground that is a Venn diagram between those two worlds.”

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