Marvel Handbook


Daron let’s just say your threat did wonders. Wait until you read this Handbook, everyone. It’s so full of information I couldn’t run all the emails I received this week.

Man…that means I have actual work ahead of me here…

John emails

Howdy Jim,

I have a question about the relationship between Magneto and Xavier. Please correct me if I am wrong but didn’t the combination of Xavier’s and Magneto’s psyches create Onslaught?

Yep they did. Professor X wiped Magneto’s mind.

If so aren’t people the least bit concerned these two guys are hanging around together in Excalibur?

Well seeing that the people of Genosha don’t recognize Mags at the moment and think he’s still dead I can’t see too much of a problem, YET. But with House of M around the corner, who knows.

Even beyond that at what point did they become friends again? I used to buy X-men books but I completely lost touch through most of the 90’s due to the shear number of X-books there were.

Well remember even though Mags is one of the X-Men’s biggest foes he’s still Xavier’s friend. He’s always been, even though he’s done evil things a few times. Xavier and him just have one of those relationships that go back and fourth.

In addition if I have a vote (and I don’t but that never stopped any of us before) I vote for Ultimate New Warriors. Seriously, if they create an Ultimate Cap book they may take readers from the original, no Ultimate, series but Ultimate New Warriors would bring back old fans and new ones alike. Who wouldn’t pay to see Ultimate Firestar and Speedball. Wait, let’s scratch all this and just have an Ultimate Speedball series, now that I would buy!!!

I like that vote. Hell I’ll tell Marvel about that one myself.

Hell, I’d like to see a regular New Warriors series, been too long since we had a good one of those. – Daron

James emails

If Sentry is Marvel’s version of Superman, how do their powers stack up against each other? Who would win in a fight?

Sentry: He has the power of flight, super-strength, super-speed, invulnerability and the ability to control light.

Superman: superhuman strength, speed, agility, stamina, invulnerability, super-sonic flight, laser vision, x-ray vision, macroscopic and microscopic vision, acute senses, hurricane-force and super-cooled breath, ability to live without nutrition, liquid, air or rest for long periods of time and an extremely long life expectancy

Supes has more powers plus almost has no weakness. Sentry is badass and ripped Carnage in two. If Sentry didn’t hold back he could possibly take out Supes since Sentry dosen’t seem like a boy scout like Supes.

So, Jim, your logic works like this? Supes = + powers – weakness, and Sentry = + baddass, which = Sentry winning?

I know this is a Marvel column, but come on…I personally think Supes would win this fight hands down. Sure there’s the “boyscout” factor, but realistically, they’ve been downplaying that a lot over there in DC land. – Daron

What exactly is going on with Quasar? Last I heard he had exiled himself from Earth, but he was back on earth in Fantastic Four. Why is he back? Does anyone (besides me) care?

You’re right. I think it was Maximum Security where he exiled himself. Ego threatened to swallow Earth so Quasar absorbed him into the Quatum Bands, and then exiled himself. He did return to Earth supposedly before this though during Avengers Disassembled but that’s debatable. He did come back to help Johnny with the Galactus thing.

What’s going on with Peter David’s Captain Marvel. Is the character set for a comeback?

Actually the series is over. You can catch Captain Marvel in New Thunderbolts. So go pick it up. Peter right now is back working with the Hulk.

After two tries with the series I don’t think we’ll be seeing another one anytime soon…especially considering how bad the second one was. – Daron

Who are your top 10 worst mutants ever?

10. X-Statix (all of them but Doop)
9. Krakoa
8. Roulette
7. Cypher
6. Bird-Brain
5. Beef
4. Beak
3. Squidboy
2. Stitch
1. Dirtnap


10. Gambit
9. Maggot
8. Gambit
7. Maggot
6. Gambit
5. Maggot
4. Gambit
3. Maggot
2. Gambit
1. Maggot

Did I forget anyone? No, I think I got them all… – Daron

What happened to Nate Grey? Will he ever appear again?

Nate merged himself with the Anti-Man, in essence “poisoning” the cells of Earth with his presence, and dissipating both of them across the globe. So he’s basically gone.

Basically? – Daron

Compare this Avengers relaunch with the last Avengers relaunch (post Heroes Return). Both were met with critical acclaim, but after a while the last relaunch got stale. How can the current team avoid repeating history?

The last relaunch (Heroes Return) was going back and returning the Avengers to the Marvel universe. That one was using the big Marvel names to rebuild the team. This time they tore it asunder to recreate it. If you add characters that never joined before and also change the line up slightly with different villains to keep it going it shouldn’t get too stale.

How many teams has Wolverine actually been on? Do his appearances actually help sales in the long run?

Well there’s basicly all the current X-Men line ups, He’s been with the Defenders (Secret), Avengers (New), Alpha Flight (original team before the title), SHIELD (currently), Horsemen, Weapon X, and The Fantastic Four (II)

The FF book did go up in sales slightly

X-Men sells well.

Secret Defenders started well but never really caught on.

He wasn’t in Flight much but guest shots did do well.

SHIELD storyline just started.

Avengers is selling great with good writing. Wolvie has yet to appear.

Now that the Defenders are appearing in the Ultimates, what’s the fate of the normal Universe Defenders? Are they getting a series? Did they ever fix the mess that was the Order?

Yep in the last issue the team was allowed to go separate ways and the heroes forgave them.

On that note, what was the worst Marvel team ever? I’m personally thinking it was the Toad, Frog Boy and Spider-Kid, but they didn’t last long outside of a couple of issues of Spider-Man.

Misfits where good. I might give it to the Legion of Losers though.

On that note, is the Amazing Spider-Kid still in continuity? Is he lurking out there somewhere?

Yep he’s still in continuity. Oliver “Ollie” Osnick last appeared in Spider-Man Unlimited #5 as the Steel Spider. He also appeared in Spider-Girl, which happens in a possible future.

Let’s flashback almost a decade to the late lamented Heroes For Hire series. What are the fates of the main characters? We all know Luke Cage is an avenger (UGGG!), but what about the rest of the team?

Iron Fist:: He had his own series for a short time but hasn’t been seen since

Ant-Man II: : He joined the Avengers for a time till he was killed.

She-Hulk : She was back with the Avengers for a time. Had her own series. Went nuts and was taken into custody by SHIELD

White Tiger : Was turned back into a White Tiger and returned to the jungle

Black Knight : Black Knight has helped the Avengers off and on.

Sersi :Went back to her home with the Eternals

Human Torch I : Has recently joined the New Invaders

Hercules : Has helped the Avengers off and on and will have his own limited series shortly.

If you had to establish a West Coast Avengers team to compliment the current team, who would you pick and why?

Alright let’s see…

Black Panther
Moon Knight
Iron Fist

Did the Beak from Exiles come from the regular marvel universe? If not, what is Beak up to? What is Beak’s connection to Bird Brain from the pages of New Mutants?

Yep he’s the 616 version of Beak. He replaced Nocturne.

As far as I know Beak has no connections to Bird-Brain that we know yet.

A few years back, Marvel launched a series of Tech related book. In that launch, Warlock from New Mutants got his own series. What was the fate of the series and what is he doing now?

Warlock defeated the villainous Mainspring and Template. Warlock then had to face the Magus and defeated him.

Warlock likely returned to his home world afterwards

Dire Wraths used to be more comman than Vampies in the Marvel Universe. What happened to them? Is there any chance that the Young Avengers are actually dire wraths in disguise? It would explain quite a bit …

They thought to be destroyed a few times or placed in Limbo by Rom the space knight but in the end they keep coming back every once in awhile.

It’s possible they are wraiths but I can’t guarantee it.

How do the Young Avengers hold up when compared to the Spider-Man super team the Slingers? Or Avengers Next? Where are the Slingers now, anyway?

Well this team might just have more mysteries then either of the other two combined. This group also has Kang around which will keep it interesting. But both the series you mention had great potential too. So until this one ends or gets past issue 12 we won’t truly know if it will compare or be better then those series.

Shamrock excluded, who is the best Irish Marvel Super-Hero?

How about Banshee. I’d say he’s likely even better then Shamrock.

Marvel announced a new Hellions series. Which members of the original Hellions are still alive? What are they up to? What connection do they have to the new bunch?

Still alive:

Thunderbird II/Warpath (with X-Force and now a hero)
Tarot (joined a new Hellions group for awhile. But hasn’t been seen since
Magma (hanging around the school for a time. Even joined those same new Hellions for a time. She’s part of X-Corporation now)
Empath (Was with Magma for a time and now with X-Corporation as well)
Firestar (part of the New Warriors for a time. Joined the Avengers for time after that.)

Connection to new group: Emma Frost. She’s their main teacher at Xaviers.

With Jubilee and the other female mutants series all pretty much tanking with readers, what female X-Men character (besides X23) can support her own series?

Well Rogue’s series hasn’t been canned yet. Mystique’s lasted 25 issues before being canned. Storm might be able to do it and I think she’s getting a limited series soon so we’ll find out.

Speaking of X23, could you explain her origin again? What’s the difference between the Marvel universe proper X23 and the cartoon version?

Actually she’s a clone of Wolverine. His dna was placed inside a woman who gave birth to her. She was then trained and given adamantium as well. The origin is going on in her limited series in stores now.

Where is Forge now and what is he up to?

He’s been helping Mystique off and on in her series actually.

What is the fate of the Heroes Reborn universe? Is it still out there? What about the Heroes that were left? Did the female Bucky survive?

Actually more of the characters crossed over to the Marvel universe later in a series of one shots involving Doom’s return to Marvel.

Some are still there and the universe still exists. That includes the female Bucky.

Also, Jolt from the regular 616 Earth is hangin’ over there as well. – Daron

Do you think there will ever be a Spider-Man/Ultimate Spider-Man cross over?

Might happen but I’m not going to say it will for sure.

I notice the Beast looks different than the Grant Morrison run on X-men, how did they explain the changes?

Actually you can blame Sage. Well you could blame Morrison too but that’s a different story. Hank was injured in X-Treme X-Men # 2-4 and Sage jumpstarted his latent healing abilities and he mutated further.

With Summer coming up, I want to introduce my niece (age 10) and Nephew (age 7) to the joys of comics. What Marvel comics would you suggest for kids to read? What’s age appropriate and what should they avoid? More importantly, with Marvel apparently heading back to 7-11 sales, what titles are going to be out there for them to buy on their own?

Well there’s a line called Marvel Adventures, which goes and redoes the past of some of Marvel’s characters for younger readers.

There’s Marvel Next, which is a line with younger characters involved.

Anything under the Max or Marvel Knights banner should be avoided for younger readers.

I’m thinking back to my childhood. I’m a comics fan now (I’m in my mid-30’s) because I had a large allowance (for the time) and comics were cheap and on sale at every drug store or 7-11. How is Marvel addressing reaching out to kids who don’t have access to a comic shop, let alone who can’t afford $3 comics?

Well the new Marvel Adventures line and Marvel Next lines where created to help get new readers. Also at the time Ultimate line was the same way. The problem now is that most books are too damn high. $2.50 may be the price of Marvel Adventures line though.

Also, Marvel is headed back to 7-11’s in the very near future…this is the smartest thing anyone’s done in the industry in years. This may actually help get some NEW readers. – Daron

In the DC Universe, if you have a mystery to be solved, you go to Batman. He’ll bring in everyone from the Atom to Zatanna to help solve the mystery. Take this scenario: Alicia Masters is killed in the same way Sue Digby was. How would the heroes of the Marvel Universe handle the murder? Who would take lead? How would it be solved? More importantly, what character would have the means, motive and opportunity to do this?

Well since it’s Alicia who got killed Reed Richards and the FF are the first group getting impacted. So Reed likely contacts the Avengers, then contacts allies like Daredevil, Spider-Man and others. Dr Strange could be contacted also since he’s the mystic guy. Cap, Reed or Prof X normally take the lead in most events. Like when the heroes went to Beyonder world way back when Cap was given the lead and he offered it to Chuck as well. Adam Warlock of course took the lead with the Infinity Gauntlet stuff though. But since it’s a mystery I let Cap take lead in the ground search and Chuck the main leader staying behind at the base they choose to use.

The mystery would be solved by separating whoever’s involved into groups to help solve it. Basically it would be handled the same way as it was in DC.

Since we’re talking shrinking technology then Ant-Man and Pyms tech would be involved. Puppet Master would have motive to do it maybe, some of the FF’s greatest foes would have reason to do it to.

Richard emails

Hey man!

What can you tell me about the Nth Man? I’ve read the first issue of the series where he comes across as a really cool espionage agent and the last issue where he is some type of mystical bad ass. What happened in between? Also, who wrote and pencilled the series?

Actually Nth Man didn’t happen in the main Marvel Universe, I don’t believe. I wasn’t a big fan of the series so I’m not really able to answer.

Larry Hama was the writer of the series.

Ron Wagner was the artist.

The series lasted 16 issues.

Now let’s finish this up Daron old buddy.

When did I become, “old buddy”? We’ve known each other for what 2 years…how do I rate an “old buddy,” seriously? Whatever!

Alright, since there’s no room to give a big sign off, I’ll keep this short. Keep the emails coming.

Also since I’ve got a few request for the 20 years of or histories of I came up with a schedule.

Week 1: Silver Surfer
Week 2: Thanos
Week 3: Daredevil
Week 4: Deadpool
Week 5: X-Men
Week 6: Hulk

Reporting from the Marvel Universe I’m Jim Trabold. Have a good week and see you at the comic shop.