Marvel Comics announces “Fresh Start Initiative”. Rebooting a lot of books… Again

For the 6th time since 2010, Marvel Comics is taking all it’s main line feature comic books and giving them all fresh and shiny “Issue 1” labels, once again throwing all my collections into disarray. So what is Marvel calling this newest reboot? “All New-All Diverse Marvel NOW! 3.0”? Or maybe “A New Age of any Marvel character with a movie!”? Nope! This newest round of “premium collectors titles” is going to be called…. “The Fresh Start Initiative”. Here are some quotes about how excited people working at Marvel are at keeping their jobs.

Here at Marvel, we tell stories that aim to entertain, inspire and amaze. When I think about what’s next for us and our fans, four things come to mind: new creative teams, new series, new directions and new beginnings.

We have a lot of incredible comics coming out in 2018, and AVENGERS #1 will be an important milestone for every Marvel fan. There are so many spectacular stories with amazing art leading up to May, and we hope you’ll enjoy these previews of our fresh start.

And as always – and I’m thrilled to say this as Editor in Chief – Make Mine Marvel!

– C.B. Cebulski, Editor in Chief

Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be rolling out new beginnings for a few of our key franchises–new creative teams, new starting points, new storylines—all the big stuff that we’ve been building towards since LEGACY began. This isn’t a clearing of the slate—while these new starts will kick off with new #1s, we’ll be maintaining the classic LEGACY issue counts as dual numbering on these titles as well. Oh, and don’t read anything into not seeing a character on the Jim Cheung piece… we can only squeeze so many characters onto there without killing poor Jim!

– Tom Brevoort, Executive Editor

So what exactly does “The Fresh Start Initiative” mean? Well it means that all the current comics with their legacy numbering that only started happening last November are going to come to an end and get all new creative teams to write fresh new stories with those characters whom Marvel think can turn a profit… At least till the sales go down and half of the titles get dropped in favor of another 20 Avengers, Spider-Man or X-Men comics.

I’m guessing that by now most readers are wondering what books are going to get the chop and then resurrected with those nice shiny Issue 1 numbering that retailers love so much. Well luckily, Marvel has provided a nice long list of titles that are getting a reboot come May 2018.

Marvel Fresh StartAvengers #1
Writer: Jason Aaron, Art/Cover: Ed McGuinness

Thor Odinson. Steve Rogers. Tony Stark. The Big Three of the Avengers are reunited at last! And just in time to save the world from total annihilation at the hands of their most powerful enemies yet: the 2000-foot-tall space gods known as Celestials.

Behold the coming of the Final Host.

Who will answer the call to assemble for a wild new era of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes? Hint: one of them has a flaming skull for a head. And what strange, world-shaking connection exists between the Final Host and Odin’s ancient band of Prehistoric Avengers?
On Sale 5/2

Marvel Fresh StartVenom #1
Writer: Donny Cates, Art/Cover: Ryan Stegman

In the wake of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s collapse, an ancient and primordial evil has been awakened beneath the streets of New York, and with it, something equally evil has awakened in that most Wicked of Webslingers – VENOM! Still a Lethal Protector of the innocents in New York, this never-before-seen threat could force Venom to relinquish everything it holds dear – including Eddie Brock! Join two of the hottest creators in comics today, Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman, for a VENOM adventure a thousand years in the making!
On Sale 5/9

Marvel Fresh StartBlack Panther #1
Writer: Ta-Nehisi Coates, Art/Cover: Daniel Acuña

A bold new direction for the Black Panther! For years, T’Challa has fought off invaders from his homeland, protecting Wakanda from everything from meddling governments to long-lost gods. Now, he will discover that Wakanda is much bigger than he ever dreamed…

Across the vast Multiverse lies an empire founded in T’Challa’s name. Readers caught a glimpse of it in MARVEL LEGACY #1. Now find out the truth behind the Intergalactic Empire of Wakanda!

Ta-Nehisi Coates welcomes aboard fan-favorite artist Daniel Acuña for a Black Panther story unlike any other!
On Sale 5/23

Marvel Fresh StartImmortal Hulk #1
Writer: Al Ewing, Art: Joe Bennett, Cover: Alex Ross
Horror Has a Name.

You’d never notice the man. He doesn’t like to be noticed. He’s quiet. Calm. Never complains. Why, you can walk up and shoot him in the head… and all he’ll do is die.

Until night falls. And someone else gets up again.

The name is Banner.

The horror is THE IMMORTAL HULK.
On Sale 6/6

Marvel Fresh StartDoctor Strange #1
Writer: Mark Waid, Art/Cover: Jesús Saiz

The Eye of Agamotto is closed! Doctor Stephen Strange has lost his connection to the Earth’s arcane power, and he can’t wait to recover while nightmares press against the seams of our reality. Tony Stark offers a 21st-century solution: when astral travel fails, try astronautical travel. Enter Doctor Strange: Space-Explorer Supreme! New spells, allies and enemies–new and old–await Strange beyond the stars, along with corners and secrets of the Marvel Universe, seen here for the first time! Space is endless, but time is short. After years of threats, Stephen’s bill for magic-use is coming due–who will come to collect?!
On Sale 6/6

Marvel Fresh StartSentry #1
Writer: Jeff Lemire, Art: Kim Jacinto, Cover: Bryan Hitch

The Golden Guardian is Back!

…but is that really such a good thing?

The greatest hero that the Marvel Universe ever forgot has returned! The Sentry – shining sentinel with the power of a thousand exploding suns – is back from the dead, but his troubled mind is far from finding peace. By day, he trudges through a mundane life as Bob Reynolds; at night, the Sentry soars across a gleaming, perfect skyline. But how much of the Sentry’s dual existence is real? And what of his other dark self, the Void?

Jeff Lemire (MOON KNIGHT, Black Hammer) returns to Marvel and unites with Kim Jacinto (AVNEGERS: NO SURRENDER) for this mind-bending series that will shake the Sentry, and the Marvel Universe, to its foundations.
On Sale 6/6

Marvel Fresh StartDeadpool #1
Writer: Skottie Young, Art/Cover: Nic Klein

Skottie Young and Nic Klein bring you the craziest tales of the regeneratin’ degenerate yet! It’s been a while since Deadpool’s had to merc to make ends meet, but things are tough all over. While Deadpool tries to get his humble mercenary-for-hire business back off the ground, a catastrophic threat so unfathomably huge, so mind-breakingly cataclysmic it defies description, is heading towards Earth, and there’s only ONE PERSON WHO CAN STOP IT!!!

Oh no, wait, it’s… it’s not Wade, is it?

Oh, ????. It’s Wade.
On Sale 6/6

Marvel Fresh StartThor #1
Writer: Jason Aaron, Art/Cover: Mike Del Mundo

The God of Thunder is Back

Thor Odinson has regained his mantle! And he’s got a wild new world of trouble on his mighty hands. The artifacts of Asgard have been scattered across the earth, and to reclaim them, Thor will have to face some ugly truths. Like the production cost on hundreds of new hammers! And the Thunder God is going to need every last one of them if he’s going to stop the unstoppable Juggernaut. Jason Aaron takes the Prince of Asgard in a whole new direction with YOUNG GUN artist Mike Del Mundo joining him at the helm! And don’t miss the latest chapter of the King Thor saga with acclaimed BLACK BOLT artist Christian Ward, as the Thor of the far future encounters an old friend who’s undergone some startling changes.
On Sale 6/13

Marvel Fresh StartAnt-Man and The Wasp #1 and #2 (of 5)
Writer: Mark Waid, Art: Javier Garron, Cover: David Nakayama

Wasp was just trying to help Ant-Man get home to Earth to see his daughter… but a little problem got in the way. Very little. Subatomic, in fact, as Scott Lang was lost in the vast spaces between atoms! Now, Nadia is his only hope of rescue… if only he would listen long enough for her to save them! From master storyteller Mark Waid (CAPTAIN AMERICA, CHAMPIONS) and Marvel Young Gun artist Javier Garron (SECRET WARRIORS, STAR-LORD) comes a story of a big journey getting smaller all the time!
#1 On Sale 6/6
#2 On Sale 6/20

Marvel Fresh StartTony Stark: Iron Man #1
Writer: Dan Slott, Art: Valerio Schiti, Cover: Alexander Lozano

From the cusp of tomorrow’s dreams to the forefront of imagination, one man always soars on the cutting edge of adventure!

You know his name.

Tony Stark is Iron Man.

And Iron Man… is an idea.

Always changing. Always evolving. An idea without limit!

Take wing with DAN SLOTT (AMAZING SPIDER-MAN) and Valerio Schiti (GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY) as they propel the ultimate Self-Made Hero to new heights of inventiveness!

Tony Stark is Iron Man. The future is now.

Strap in!
On Sale 6/20

Marvel Fresh StartCaptain America #1
Writer: Ta-Nehisi Coates, Art: Leinil Yu, Cover: Alex Ross

“Winter in America”

For over seventy years, he has stood in stalwart defense of our country and its people.

But in the aftermath of Hydra’s takeover of the nation, Captain America is a figure of controversy, carrying a tarnished shield.

And a new enemy is rising!

Who are the Power Elite? And how do they intend to co-opt and corrupt the symbol that is Captain America?
On Sale 7/4

Marvel Fresh StartThe Amazing Spider-Man #1
Writer: Nick Spencer, Art/Cover: Ryan Ottley

It’s a Brand New D– No, wait a second. Spider-Man’s gone Big Time– That’s not right either. Spider-Man’s Rebir– Definitely not THAT. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN gets a BIGGER, BRAND NEW SERIES courtesy of Nick Spencer (SECRET EMPIRE, SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN) and the Marvel debut of RYAN OTTLEY (Invincible)!!!!! An alien invasion attacks NYC and the only one who can stop it is… Spider-Man?! But that’s FAR from all you’ll find here—A revelation from the past puts Peter Parker’s job, relationships and WHOLE LIFE in jeopardy! And if even THAT’s not enough, you’ll see a new roommate, new love interests and a new villain!!!
On Sale in July

Marvel Fresh StartLife of Captain Marvel #1
Writer: Margaret Stohl, Art: Carlos Pacheco, Cover: Julian Tedesco

Captain Marvel – The Homecoming!

Carol Danvers was just a girl from the Boston suburbs who loved science and the Red Sox until a chance encounter with a Kree hero gave her incredible super powers. Now, she’s a leader in the Avengers and the commander of Alpha Flight. But what if there was more to the story? When crippling anxiety attacks put her on the sidelines in the middle of a fight, Carol finds herself reliving memories of a life she thought was far behind her. You can’t outrun where you’re from – and sometimes, you HAVE to go home again. But there are skeletons in Captain Marvel’s closet – and what she discovers will change her entire world. Written by bestselling author Margaret Stohl and drawn by fan-favorite comics veteran Carlos Pacheco, this is the true origin of Captain Marvel.
On Sale 7/4

Looking at all these books that have officially been given the reboot treatment, it leaves me to wonder what other books are getting rebooted later in the year. If the images seen in the trailer above has shown us, it’s that there might be some X-Men books getting reboots, or at minimum some of the characters getting solo books, and characters from The Fantastic Four, Wolverine, Mile Moralez, She-Hulk and more could end up with new books under The Fresh Start Initative.

That all being said, this is Marvel’s 6th reboot in 8 years. Taking into account that Marvel has a habit of trying to do some big event that is “going to change the Marvel Universe forever” every few months too, people are not exactly happy about this new rebooting of all the series above and more.

And of course these is the usual outcry of not enough female-centric comic books along with female writers and artists being used in the reboot. But to be honest, some of the biggest failing books that have caused all these changes at Marvel recently have been because those types of books do not sell, and when those types of books do not sell it is usually a female writer at the helm. So why take a lot of legacy books and give them over to the writers who have made the Marvel company a laughing stock with some of the lowest sales in the last 10 years? We here at The Outerhaven, and myself (Karl Dorksen-Smart, the writer of this piece. Send hate mail to are huge supporters in the idea that women can do anything they want in any business that they want, however we also state that when a woman fucks things up, she is also responsible. Representation does not give you free reign and freedom from criticism or responsibility.

At the end of it all, there is going to be a relaunch of a huge bunch of Marvel books for the 6th time in 8 years, and people are getting sick of it. Marvel hit a good chord with readers by returning to legacy numbering, but now they seem to be going out there and fucking things up again. But we shall give Marvel the benefit of the doubt and hope that all these new creative teams will do good things with the books they are given.

About The Author

Karl Smart
Senior Editor / Reviewer

The main "Australian arm" of The Outerhaven. Karl primarily spends time playing and reviewing video games while taking time to occasionally review the latest movie or piece of gaming technology.