23rd February Marvel Comic Releases

A few new series are starting this new comic book day, and a whole load more are also being continued, so let’s get into it!

Single Issues:

Carnage Forever by Philip Kennedy Johnson

Cletus Kasady is the most notorious serial killer in the Marvel Universe – and it’s been thirty years since his first introduction! Thirty years of monsters, mayhem and murder – AND YOU HAVEN’T SEEN ANYTHING YET! With an awesome assembly of creators, this issue will HAVE IT ALL! A look back on Carnage’s past, his present and, just maybe, the first hints you’ll ever get of his visceral and violent FUTURE!

I reckon this is good for new and old Carnage fans alike, as it looks back on the character’s past!

Ghost Rider by Ben Percy

Johnny Blaze has the perfect life: a wife and two kids, a job at an auto repair shop and a small-town community that supports him… But Johnny isn’t doing well. He has nightmares of monsters when he sleeps. And he sees bloody visions when he’s awake. This life is beginning to feel like a prison. And there’s a spirit in him that’s begging to break out! Benjamin Percy (WOLVERINE, X-FORCE) and Cory Smith (CONAN THE BARBARIAN, CAPTAIN MARVEL) are going back to basics with the Spirit of Vengeance in this extra-sized first issue!

As this is celebrating 50 years of Ghost Rider, this new series is probably not for people new to Ghost Rider. You don’t have to be an expert by any means, but I’d recommend having at least some basic knowledge of the character and his villains before reading this.

Bind Ups:

X-Force by Benjamin Percy Volume 4

Fear of a green planet! As the Reign of X expands outwards, Beast plants the seeds – and X-Force pulls the weeds. But not if Man-Slaughter has anything to say about it! When the genetic makeup of the shambling soldier is used to infect and control an army of unwilling agents, X-Force must get to the root of the problem! Meanwhile, Beast’s best-laid plans invite a threat close to the heart as the secret works of Mikhail Rasputin are at last revealed! If Black Tom can’t stop this insidious invasion, the consequences go beyond mere death. Time for Colossus to step in! Plus: A sea change for Kid Omega and Phoebe Cuckoo! And Wolverine takes on the deadliest waves in the world, and it will take more than a healing factor to survive this thresher! 

See my Dawn Of X/Reign Of X guides for a detailed explanation as to how this series works.

Wolverine by Benjamin Percy Volume 3

The unusual suspects! Stolen goods, a torched ship and a missing sword. Wolverine
is on the case, but what mind game is Solem playing? Logan is about to come face-to-
face with Arakkii pirate crimelord Sevyr Blackmore – but will their fight lead Wolverine to the clues he needs to catch Solem, or will it be the distraction that puts him right where the manipulative mutant wants him? The game approaches its end – but as far as Solem is concerned, that’s just an excuse to change the rules! Then, CIA agent Jeff Bannister uncovers a secret surveillance device aimed at Krakoa – but someone wants their bug back, and Bannister out of the picture. Wolverine and his friend go on the run, but where will they find safe haven? Don’t miss the return of some unexpected adversaries! And, Wolverine finally hunts the one that got away – the massive leviathan just off Krakoa’s shore – in a special story from the annals of X-history!

Again, it’s best to check my linked guides before deciding if you need this one.

Way Of X by Si Spurrier Volume 1

Only one mutant senses the looming shadows. On Krakoa, mutantkind has built a new Eden – but there are serpents in this garden. Some mutants struggle to fit in. Some mutants turn to violence and death. And the children whisper of the Patchwork Man, singing in their hearts. Snared by questions of death, law and love, only Nightcrawler can fight for the soul of Krakoa. Only he – and the curious crew he assembles – can help mutants defeat their inner darkness and find a new way to live! But the malevolent force hiding within Krakoa has begun to show its true form and answers are hidden…within the Mindscape! As the X-Men’s greatest foe – mutantkind’s primal evil – slithers in the minds of its most senior leaders, can Nightcrawler light the spark that will drive out the shadows, or will Krakoa slip into the abyss?

Again, the same advice applies.

Reign Of X Volume 9 by Zeb Wells and more

Life and death stakes in the Reign of X! As Empath’s misdeeds come back to haunt him, the Hellions are rocked by a battle years in the making: Psylocke vs. Betsy Braddock! Wolverine takes the fight to the vampire nation in a quest to stop Dracula’s plot, but what sacrifices must he make for humans and mutants to see the next dawn? Meanwhile, some of the New Mutants are looking for love in all the wrong places! On Krakoa, Fabian Cortez and the Quiet Council discuss the rules of murder – but in space, the killings have already begun. And a dark force is secretly manipulating X-Factor’s lives, just as a striking revelation about one of their deaths comes to light!

Again, the advice is above.

Marauders by Gerry Duggan Volume 4

The past can burn you! The Hellfire Gala may have ended, but the flames of hellfires past have started licking at the heels of the Inner Circle – and when this tinderbox of buried sins explodes, the Marauders may get burned! Meanwhile, the team takes to the highest seas of all – and points their bow to the stars! But what threat awaits them out in the cosmos, and why has it sworn vengeance? In space, no one can hear the Marauders bleed! Plus: Banshee screams into action – and you don’t cross Emma Frost, even if she crossed you first. And while a new representative of Krakoa hits the international stage, the Marauders find themselves face-to-snout with the legendary dragon Fin Fang Foom! Secrets, lies and hidden agendas unravel as the Marauders adjust to a new future for mutantkind!

This really is a week for the Krakoa X-Men era! So again, the advice is again above.

X-Men Omnibus Volume 1 by Chris Claremont and more

In 1963, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby introduced their latest costumed creations to the burgeoning Marvel Universe. Cyclops, Beast, Iceman, Angel, Marvel Girl and their leader, the mysteriously named Professor X were the X-Men – and little did anyone know that they would take the industry by storm! Lee and Kirby billed them as “The Strangest Super-Heroes of All!” And while their mutant powers were certainly weird, the binding concept of this band of heroes – a group feared and hated for being different – was pure Marvel relevance. This Omnibus collects the X-Men’s earliest adventures as they encounter Magneto, the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, the Juggernaut, Ka-Zar of the Savage Land, the Sentinels and more of Marvel’s greatest heroes and villains! 

If you’re looking for the origins of the X-Men, then look no further! This will give you an amazing grounding to the characters and the world of the mutants!

What If Original Marvel Series Omnibus Volume 2 by Peter B Gillis and more

Complete your collection of the classic series in which Marvel’s best and brightest posed the eternal question: What if? The results were action-packed, thought-provoking and often tragic twists on the Marvel Universe you know! How would Peter Parker’s life change if Uncle Ben or Gwen Stacy had lived…if his clone had survived…or if Aunt May were bitten by the spider? What if Reed, Sue, Ben and Johnny never gained their powers…or there were no Fantastic Four at all? Imagine if the Thing and the Beast continued to mutate, Matt Murdock became an Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. or Captain America became president! Phoenix and Elektra don’t die…but Yellowjacket and the Invisible Girl do! Dazzler becomes the herald of Galactus, Wolverine kills the Hulk, Iron Man is trapped in the past, Thor meets Conan the Barbarian…and much more! 

The second omnibus of the original What If comics. It’s not entirely necessary to have the first omnibus, as every story stands alone, but they’ll still be a fun read.

EXTREME CARNAGE Phillip Kennedy, More

An event that truly lives up to its name! Spider-Man and friends were pushed to the limits in MAXIMUM CARNAGE. The Marvel Universe barely survived ABSOLUTE CARNAGE. Now we’re taking symbiote chaos to the Extreme! As the dust continues to settle after the symbiote-redefining KING IN BLACK saga, Eddie and Dylan Brock aren’t the only ones adjusting to a new normal. The Life Foundation symbiotes – Scream, Phage, Riot, Lasher and Agony – are trying to reconcile the sometimes-noble intentions of their hosts with their own all-too-often bloodthirsty impulses! But another symbiote is facing a stunning reinvention as well – and that means Carnage! What will happen when the refreshed Carnage symbiote targets the rest one by one? 

You’ll want to read all the events mentioned in the synopsis, otherwise, this won’t make much sense. The events you’ll want are Venom, Absolute Carnage and King In Black.

Doctor Strange Epic Collection: Reality War by Roger Stern

Roger Stern and Chris Claremont turn their magic towards the Master of the Mystic Arts – Doctor Strange! Joined by artistic icons Gene Colan, Marshall Rogers and Tom Sutton, there is no doubt the Doctor is in. Their stories featuring villains Nightmare, D’Spayre and the Dream Weaver twist reality and rend Strange and Clea’s souls with inconceivable fears. Next, Baron Mordo returns, armed with the occult secrets of the Vatican. Then, Wong is captured by the Shadowqueen and Clea and Strange must traverse dimensions and battle the demonic N’Garai to save him! Also featuring mystic encounters with Nighthawk, Namor, the Avengers and the Black Knight and the return of a figure from one of Doctor Strange’s first adventures.

This is the 5th volume in the Epic Collection, but there’s currently no listing for the second in the series. What I can give you is the names of the other three volumes, and their reading order: Master Of The Mystic Arts (volume 1), A Separate Reality (volume 3) and Alone Against Eternity (volume 4).

Warlock by Jim Starlin Gallery Edition

At Marvel in the 1970s, no one mastered the startling scope of cosmic adventure like Jim Starlin! In this star-spanning spectacle, Starlin evolved Adam Warlock to the next level, imbuing the character with the inner demons of a man-god on the brink of insanity. Forced to confront an evil version of himself and the nihilistic menace Thanos, Warlock’s conflicts weren’t just knuckle-grinding throw-downs – they were existential struggles for his very soul. Featuring the first-ever assembling of the Infinity Gems, the debuts of Gamora and Pip the Troll and an all-out struggle to save the universe – joined by the Avengers, Captain Marvel and Spider-Man! And now, the full grandeur of Starlin’s saga is unleashed on the oversized pages of a Gallery Edition!

Marvel Gallery Edition collect some of the most memorable moments in Marvel Comics in giant editions, and this Gallery Edition is collecting the storyline that can be seen as the building blocks of the Marvel Cinematic Universe itself! It doesn’t give the origins for Adam Warlock (guide coming when Guardians Of the Galaxy volume 3 comes out), or Thanos, but it does give us the beginnings of Gamora and Pip The Troll, who was seen with Eros in Eternals. If you’re looking for the origins of the Infinity Saga, then this is absolutely a must-read!

Marvel Portfolio: Mark Brooks

Superstar artist Mark Brooks has thrilled True Believers for years with his detailed interiors, stunning covers and jaw-dropping promotional artwork for such major projects as HOUSE OF X. Brooks’ instantly recognizable illustrations starring everyone from Spider-Man to the Avengers to the X-Men – sometimes in the same image – have earned him a reputation as one of the most talented creators in the industry. Now twelve of Brooks’ most stunning pieces have been painstakingly selected and collected in a beautiful hardcover case, ready for you to frame at home. It’s an instant collection of masterpieces from a modern maestro!

And finally this week, we have a portfolio! This bind-up just collects artwork, so has no storyline to it, so keep that in mind!

And that’s everything coming out this week! What’s on your pull list? I’m certainly eyeing up Ghost Rider!

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