Comic Vine News

42 Comments

Off My Mind: S.H.I.E.L.D. And Rewriting Marvel's History

How long has the organization been around?

S.H.I.E.L.D. is about to make its return but not in the way we thought. In the first issue, we will see that the organization has been around way before Nick Fury was on the scene. According to the solicit for issue #1, Leonardo Da Vinci, Issac Newton, Imhotep, Zhang Heng, Galileo and many others have been members of S.H.I.E.L.D. They've all apparently fought off the likes of Galactus (way before Reed Richards), the Brood and even the Celestials. Is this one of the best kept secrets in the Marvel Universe or just some fancy creative writing?
 
Speaking of writing, S.H.I.E.L.D. will be written by Jonathan Hickman. That right there sells me on the book. The reason I felt the need to write about this (besides that this could be a cool concept) is I wonder how it will all play out. If S.H.I.E.L.D. has been around for centuries, is it just a coincidence that this organization and the one we know share the same initials? Nick Fury is the man that seems to know everything. Did he know about this?
 
I've been a big fan of Hickman's writing on both Fantastic Four and Secret Warriors. What I'm not a huge fan of is when big secret histories are written into comics. I'm not crazy when we get big revelations of events that happened that we simply didn't know about but are supposed to believe happened in the past of the characters we read.
 
A recent example could be the shared history of Black Widow and Bucky Barnes. You've probably seen our video on Black Widow and I do like the connection and current relationship between the two. Unless I missed it, are we just to accept that she knew about Bucky and never thought to bring it up to Steve Rogers while fighting along side him in the Avengers? We just have to accept that all the time Black Widow was around, she knew Bucky didn't die way back when Steve thought he did. Perhaps it was just a matter of her memory being fuzzy when her government tried manipulating her.  There's also the history of Sentry that we're just supposed to accept. Yes a nice neat explanation was made but it's still something that's been forced upon us. This past weekend I even had a discussion with JoeyF about how Vulcan, Cyclops and Havok's brother, was inserted into the X-Men's past without us knowing about it until Deadly Genesis. And let's not even talk about the "relationship" between Norman Osborn and Gwen Stacy and the results of it.
== TEASER ==
I know we're just talking comics. We're talking entertainment. I'm not usually one to get uptight when writers and publishers throw these creative monkey wrenches at us. As I mentioned, I am definitely curious to see what Hickman is going to do with this series. It's just the idea that Galactus was a threat before and no one knew about it when the Fantastic Four had to fight him. I guess I see it as the history of Marvel being rewritten. Should we just sit back and allow things to be changed?
 
I can easily see the new S.H.I.E.L.D. series being something really cool. If it's a hit, will this give Marvel (and perhaps even DC) the idea that new ideas could be rewritten into the past of existing characters and we'll simply eat it up?  Fred Hembeck recently did a humorous story on Little Pete ( Spider-Man) and his first encounter with Johnny and Sue Storm years before they all received their powers. Are we going to seem more of this? 
 
We'll have to wait to see where S.H.I.E.L.D. goes. It's definitely within Nick Fury's character that he  has known about all these brilliant historical figures secretly having been involved with S.H.I.E.L.D. Then again, perhaps the name is just a coincidence. 
 
I just don't want to find out later that Aunt May and Doctor Doom's uncle went to prom together in high school.
42 Comments
Posted by Dane

This story/concept is going in my "bat-sh#t insane" category. I really feel like certain things are being forced down our throats and this seems like a fairly outlandish way to try and tie Marvel continuity together without doing the kind of mass-retcons that DC have done in the past.
 
I'll probably pick up the first issue just to give Hickman a chance and decide from there. Extra love for the Christina Strain colours. Marvel should make the best use of her talents that they can.

Posted by growup

I DETEST SECRET HISTORIES. 
THEY ARE THE SINGLE WORST THING ABOUT COMICS.

Posted by Mr.Hulk_Smashin'!

Leo looks like he's building an Iron Man suit.

Posted by Crackdown

Me on the otherhand? I LOVE secret histories. LOVE them, adore them.

Edited by The Sharp Dressed Lady

"Not on my watch." - Colonel Nicholas Joseph Fury 
 
Let the troll accounts begin...

Posted by Grim

hopefully its just a coincidence that will NEVEr be brought up outside of this story...

Posted by Tyler Starke
@Crackdown said:
" Me on the otherhand? I LOVE secret histories. LOVE them, adore them. "
hahahaha good stuff, I don't hate or love secret histories until I've read them, some are good some are bad, but i personally think Leonardo Da Vinci running around battling Galactus sounds pretty friggin cool
Posted by Joeybagad0nutz
@Tyler Starke said:
" @Crackdown said:
" Me on the otherhand? I LOVE secret histories. LOVE them, adore them. "
hahahaha good stuff, I don't hate or love secret histories until I've read them, some are good some are bad, but i personally think Leonardo Da Vinci running around battling Galactus sounds pretty friggin cool "

This. Personally, I loved the Green Goblin/Gwen Stacy story.
Posted by Theansweris42

Considering it's SHIELD I'm sure they can shoehorn reasoning without sounding too insane.  Hell, could end up an alternate universe, or some time travel event, or Nick Fury somehow being a distint relative to all the pre-industrial shield members.  Either way I'm intrigued. 
 
Though wonder how the whole Hydra controlling SHIELD thing is going to pan out.

Posted by Nova`Prime`

I think this could be a very solid story, but will it have any real impact on the "present" day Marvel Universe I doubt it. I think its going to be one of those good stand alone stories and its left up to the reader if its the past of the 616 universe or its own. At least if they are making the connection they are remembering SHIELD wasn't a US run agency, but a UN law enforcement agency.

Posted by Grendel

I'm not big on the giant history retcons that are happening either but they are becoming more common and readers seem to dig them for some reason.
 
Anybody catch the Apocalypse cameo in the preview pages for this issue?

Posted by joshmightbe
@Nova`Prime`:
thats one of the things that bugged me about civil war way were they suddenly depicted as an american thing when the S.H.E.I.L.D. i grew up reading about was always an international organization
Posted by Watch Dog

I like the sound of this story it's been on my pull list since I first herd of it.

Edited by The Sharp Dressed Lady

Told ya...

Posted by FLStyle

Torchwood? Hmmm...

Posted by Theodore

I've never been a fan of secret histories or retcons but this book looks like it'll be a fun ride

Posted by Archetype

Love it, love SHIELD, love history so this should be great.I hope it exceeds my expectations.
 
 @Theansweris42 said:

"Though wonder how the whole Hydra controlling SHIELD thing is going to pan out. "

I was thinking the same thing.
Posted by Comiclove5

I am so interested in this.

Posted by brewski420

i've never read an issue of s.h.i.e.l.d before, but i'm very excited about this series. looks awesome
Posted by Benzo

I'm defiantly getting this! the art looks so beautiful and the story is also unique and interesting too! :O

Posted by the_fallen11

I dis-like this, I'm not a fan of  secret histories not b/c I don't think its a cool idea just b/c most of the time it's not done right and too contradicting to the story.

Posted by Hellos

Da Vinci looks badass.
Posted by Golden Cod

Will probably enjoy the story.   Will probably not enjoy how it's forced into continuity.   
 
For me this is more like a Marvel X or Red Son type of story where cool ideas are explored but not incorporated into standard continuity due to massive retcon issues.  
 
Based on the images, it looks like Marvel's going to use its deus ex machina, the Infinity Gauntlet + Gems, to rewrite history... ugh.

Posted by Aerik

I'll admit they do throw alot of twists and turns our way but I'm totally for this one. Sounds like fun!

Posted by Quest

da vinci just became even more badass
Posted by waruikumo

ehhh, im ok with it.   
 
Although if they pull some Gwen Stacy Norman osborn stuff, I might just lose my goddam mind.

Posted by Korg

It's Hickman. I'll buy it. He's been handling SHIELD-related things in Secret Warriors for some time now. Strangely, I have heard very little complaining about the secret history going on in that book.

Posted by DarkSyde79

There's no need at all the rewrite the history of SHIELD. If anything, it takes away from the history of Nick Fury. I could see an Illuminati focusing on these characters and their  observations of how the world is changing and the rise of super powered beings. But even that would be a cop-out. 

Posted by Oluf_Von_Host_Museum
@G-Man: Sounds like they're turning Shield's past history into the Marvel version of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.
Moderator
Posted by Korg
@DarkSyde79 said:
" If anything, it takes away from the history of Nick Fury. "
How does it take anything away from the history of Nick Fury?
Posted by CATMANEXE

sounds great.

Posted by Omega Ray Jay

 

 

Posted by Hawkling

is this a mini series?

Posted by Meteorite

When secret histories are written, they can either turn out good or bad. In this case, it looks like it will turn out good.

Posted by Yung ANcient One

i like the idea... but it confuses me...
 
SHIELD has been around for centuries apparently... but somehow it was secretly ran by Hydra someway(on New WArriors Nick Fury finds out Hydra Secretly ran SHIELD)... plus i have to deal with the Idea that AIm and Hydra might be linked together...
 
it took the treat of Ultimate Nullifier for FF to "Beat" Galactus... now... somehow... a Less Scientific Nation/Era... found a way to beat Galactus before the FF... and it happened to be SHield... but Shield didnt Step in the "2nd"(maybe) time That Galactus "attacked"... they jus let the FF try and take care of it... 
 
its Unreasonable for me... i dislike when things like this happens in fictional stories... when things become unreasonable... theres no reasoning and u have to wait for a bad excuse to reason with the story...
 
but whatevers... im jus saying
 
the more i think about it the more i can see myself trying to reason with it... and then getting a bad excuse... but whatevers it'll be a fun read tho

Posted by RATZGobbler

My god. It makes so much sense now. The Tower of Babel was a space port to end the tyranny of Shi-ar but were made silent by their spies. The Sphinx was a mech designed to defend earth and lost its nose in the first, real, Skrull invasion, along with the colossus of Rhodes. But stone henge must have been the launch pad for the first Gyro-carrier. These secrets have been kept for so long, but why?

Posted by The Sadhu

Sounds interesting...
Posted by sora_thekey

This is one of those comics that could either be really awesome or totally lame
 
I'm hoping it's the first one... 
I want to know what the SHIELD logo says on the bottom in a really weird caligraphy on the cirlces on the periods in the name....
Moderator
Posted by AmericanPatriot1971

The Artwork might look good... it's not a good concept. Just another attempt by the current editorial staff to pull the same thing that Brandon Bragda did when it came to how he treated Star Trek fans when he put out the failure that was Enterprise out.. To paraphrase his statement, 'To hell with the fans, they will take what ever i give them'... is exactly what they are doing!  We've seen that when the brought Bucky back from the dead (so when is Uncle Ben coming back?), and we see that still with the way the righting and handling of the Real Captain America is happening.   Anyone wearing the uniform of Captain America who finds a group of American Citizens getting together to  protest policies they disagree with as bigots, does not deserve to wear it!

Posted by VenomMagus

I agree that we should have "past events" crammed down our throats: esp. when they seem to contradict things that we already know to be "true".  In my eyes, that's exactly what Marvel Ultimates is doing.  Let's rewrite the characters, sometimes, totaslly different, andpeople will buy it because it still says Spider-Man on the cover!  $$$yay$$$ 
 
The problem is when the people who have been reading the book for the last few decades open the pages and their brains scream "Wait, that's NOT how it happened!!!"  I'm all for letting new writers and new artists have a chance to strut their stuff and define themselves and maybe even etch a piece of comic book fame for themselves in the process, but to me, tossing in these "past events" or "rewrites" is non-ethical and should really be frowned upon.  If I created saomehting I would be honored to see someone else pick up the reins and keep it going but humiliated if someone else ripped off on my hard work just to undermine my creation all in the name of the mighty dollar. 
 
I really think we can write new stories and make new characters without hurting some of the best things other people have already done.  Let's all show a little humility, no?
Posted by Theworldbreaker

 You want to know how badass galactus? 
now THAT is badass! he used the living tribunal i mean come on. 

 
Posted by JonesDeini

This series really turned out to be great. Hickman's yet to contradict anything from the current marvel history, just add to it. Anyone who wrote this off and hasn't read it I'd suggest you reassess that decision. I too looked at the promo art and read about the concept and said "the hell outta here with that crap!!!" But this is a genuinely interesting stand alone story