Marvel Legacy Through the Eyes Of A Lapsed Marvel Reader

by James Ferguson

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few months, you are aware of Marvel Legacy, the one-shot poised to “usher in a new dawn” within the Marvel Universe. It’s been promoted like crazy. As a lapsed Marvel Comics reader, I was particularly interested in the book. This could be my jumping on point to get back into this line of titles that I haven’t really read in about ten years. I’ve stayed up to date on most of the news, but I have not been reading any titles to see the day-to-day activity.

So, does Marvel Legacy pull me back? Yes and no. As mentioned above, this book, as well as the titles spinning out of it, have been promoted a lot for months.There are a ton of new titles, re-numberings, and one-shots spinning out of it. As a result, I feel like this one-shot didn’t tell me a whole lot that I didn’t know already. It works to set up a number of these new comics such as Thor, Marvel Two-in-One, and Incredible Hulk. All of these books have already been announced and their initial storylines revealed, so reading the comic didn’t give me much more information.

Although Esad Ribic and Steve McNiven handled the majority of the artwork, a large portion of Marvel Legacy is illustrated by the artists of these other titles. There are thirteen additional artists credited including Greg Land, Chris Samnee, Alex Maleev, and Jim Cheung, each drawing one to three pages. These will probably be included in the first trade paperbacks for the corresponding books.

All this isn’t to say that Marvel Legacy wasn’t enjoyable. There’s a lot to take in, especially for someone like me who is coming back to the publisher. The introduction of the Avengers from one million years ago is exciting and very interesting. It plays into the whole theme of Legacy to see how the earliest versions of some of these characters interacted centuries ago. Their designs are super cool, pulling the basic aspects of the lineage into the past to capture their essence, but in an ancient version.

One thing I would have liked to see are small caption boxes introducing each of the characters. For someone like me who isn’t totally up to speed on who some of these people are, little name tags like that would be helpful. They do it in a number of other comics, so it’s odd that it’s not included here. I’m not saying a full life story. I’m talking about a small box with the character’s name and a three to five word description of who they are. As it stands, I’ll be spending some time on Wikipedia looking up some of these characters.

There is a big return of a character that you’ve probably heard of by now. I won’t spoil it here just in case you haven’t read it yet. This isn’t unexpected as it’s someone we all figured would be coming back sooner or later. It’s very fitting and certainly opens up a number of possibilities so I’m interested to see where it goes next.

Of all the aspects of the Marvel Universe that are touched upon in Marvel Legacy, the pages with the remnants of the Fantastic Four have me the most excited. The First Family has been broken and absent for some time and these small sequences serve as a reminder of the hope and adventure that made them so prominent. While there isn’t a single boring scene in the book, these few stand out in a big way and brought a smile to my face.

Although I already knew some of what occurred in Marvel Legacy, I’m intrigued enough to dive deeper into the new titles. There are some that I wouldn’t have necessarily considered at first, if not for the introductions here. I almost feel obligated to compare this to DC Rebirth as both books served a very similar purpose.

Both are resetting their universe in a way, providing the groundwork for a number of exciting new stories to come. While Marvel Legacy doesn’t have a Watchmen moment like DC Rebirth did, it is packed with compelling concepts that I’m eager to see explored in the coming months.

Marvel Legacy #1 is currently available at your local comic shop and digitally through ComiXology and Amazon Kindle.