Posts Tagged ‘Avengers Arena’

Was it the sales? Was it the backlash? Or did they realize it was a bad idea from the start?

Here is the solicit for Avengers Arena’s 17 & 18 via BleedingCool.

AVENARENA2012017

AVENGERS ARENA #17 & 18
DENNIS HOPELESS (W)
KEV WALKER (A)
Issue #17 – COVER BY FRANCESCO FRANCAVILLA
Issue #18 – COVER BY DAVE JOHNSON
Issue #17 – “BOSS LEVEL” PART 4: THE FINAL FIGHTS RAGE ON!
• Up on Murder World Island, it’s the surviving contestants in an all-out battle royale!
• Down in Arcade’s lair, it’s two other contestants vs. Arcade!
Issue #18 – “BOSS LEVEL” PART 5: THE SEARING SERIES FINALE!
• Arcade’s mad plan comes to pass! Who lives? Who dies?
• Shock follows shock as the game reaches its last desperate seconds!
• AVENGERS ARENA ends here…but it’s also the launch pad for what comes next!
32 PGS. (EACH)/Rated T+ …$2.99 (EACH)

What will this mean for the characters? Will the deaths stay or will it all turn out to be some kind of VR thing and everyone is alive and well? Or will they just kill everyone off and be done with it? We’ll find out soon enough.

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Comic books in general have been known to pull some crazy stunts in order to boost sales or attempt to stay in line with pulp culture. Sometimes it’s totally awesome, sometimes it’s utterly fail. One of the biggest examples of a WTF moment was Spider-Man #700 where the writer even got death threats over the ending.

A lesser known WTF moment was the cancellation of Avengers Academy so that the characters could return in a new title. This, in and of itself, isn’t anything too noteworthy, but the fact that the new title is called Avengers Arena and is specifically about teenage students being forced to fight to the death caused several brows to be raised. Not only were they obviously capitalizing off the recent success of the Hunger Games movie but they literally stole their #1 cover from an earlier, and even bloodier, film called Battle Royale.

Avengers Arena #1 cover and Battle Royale poster

Avengers Arena #1 cover and Battle Royale poster

This made a lot of people unhappy for several reasons, least of all being that Marvel has taken a bunch of kids and basically said they were going to start killing them off… for seemingly no real good reason. It’s not the worse thing Marvel has ever done and a lot of the characters aren’t nearly as well known as, say, Spider-Man, and so the title debuted with about as much fanfare as any other title… until recently.

Just as quietly, a petition on Change.org was put up to get Avengers Arena pulled and retconned.

The cancellation of Avengers Arena by Dennis Hopeless: Cancel Avengers Arena and retcon the deaths that have happened.

Marvel has gathered together our favorite teenaged characters in a gambit to ride the coattails of The Hunger Games recent success. We cannot allow these young heroes in training to be killed off, it is an injustice to them and the future of comics – even if the majority of the comic populace; neither care, nor have heard of them. Each of these characters, established before this book, have seen substantial personal growth; growth which is about to be snuffed out in the name of sales. Let us show Marvel that we will not let this transgression go unremarked. Let us show that we will not allow our beloved characters to fade quietly into the night. Let us show Marvel that we are their dedicated fans and these are the characters we love! Join me by signing this petition, and help me show Marvel that this is not the right thing to do, that we will not sit idly by while they lump our beloved characters into the debris pile they have collected. Thank you, each and every one of you , even if you do not sign. So long as you have read this I have seeded the thought of this travesty against fans into your mind.

Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but this is the first time that a petition has gone up for anything like this, esp something that is not so mainstream as one of the ‘big named’ characters. I would have expected a Spider-Man petition long before an Avengers Arena. Then again, all it takes is one person who feels for these characters to put up a petition, and since AA is a smaller title, a petition might be the only way for anyone to take notice.

As for signing the petition, I’m torn. While I don’t like the idea of a Battle Royale style anything, let alone in my comics, I can’t help but think “this is Marvel, they’ll retcon themselves eventually anyway”.

At the time of posting the petition only has 63 signatures and it looks to have been put up almost a month ago (22 days). I don’t know what kind of advertising they did for it but it just hit Bleeding Cool and it’s only a matter of time before a few other outlets pick up the story as well.

In the end, I fully believe that even if the petition got up to 30k signatures, I doubt Marvel would take any notice. It will be all about the bottom line. If Avengers Arena doesn’t sell very well then they will cancel and perhaps go back to Avengers Academy or parcel the characters off into other titles, the ones that are still living that is.

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