Ever since it was announced that the Heroic Age was coming to Marvel this May, we've been left wondering what it was all about. The first promo showed the shadowed figures of what appeared to be Iron Man, Thor and Captain America. With all the "dark" versions of our heroes running around, we couldn't help but be suspicious. Today Marvel has released information about the "new era of heroism" in the Marvel Universe. Beginning with May's release of Avengers #1, the Heroic Age will bring the universe out of the darkness and bring a "renewed sense of hope and optimism." This will lead to the formation of new teams and brand new characters. Marvel says that titles branded with the Heroic Age banner will offer the perfect jumping on point for new and old readers.
David Gabriel, Senior Vice-President of Sales and Circulation said they've been working on the details of the Heroic Age for about a year now, emphasizing that "the Marvel Universe Starts Here."
“Our heroes have experienced some of their greatest trials and tribulations recently, but now there’s going to be a renewed hope among their ranks,” said Joe Quesada, Chief Creative Officer & Editor-in-Chief Marvel Entertainment LLC. “As our heroes emerge from the darkness, the Marvel Universe is going to be a more optimistic place than we’ve seen in a quite awhile. But that doesn’t mean we’re making things easy for our characters!”
Joe Quesada also said a few more words about the Heroic Age to USA Today this morning as well.
The obvious comparisons to DC's upcoming Brightest Day will most likely get made. I'm sure other critics will also claim this is due to Disney buying Marvel and wanting a more cheerful universe. Quesada did address this by saying that the return of the "good guys" has been in the works for two years and was finalized eight months ago, before Disney's purchase.
"Heroes will be heroes again. They've gone through hell and they're back to being good guys — a throwback to the early days of the Marvel Universe, with more of a swashbuckling feel."
Are you happy that we're moving out of the dark times? Can comics still be good if they're not filled with all the doom and gloom we've had lately?
"There is no sanitizing of the Marvel books at all," he says, promising stories will remain "edgy" and contemporary. "Our philosophy here is to just keep telling good stories."