With 2012 in the rear view mirror and 2013 smack ahead of us, let’s take a look at 13 reasons to look forward to Marvel in the coming year, from Iron Man 3 (my personal favorite) to the X-Men turning the big 5-0.
1. IRON MAN 3. The next installment of Iron Man hits theaters May 3, 2013. Robert Downey, Jr. returns as the billionaire playboy philanthropist, and this time he’s facing his toughest challenge yet as he finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy’s hands. Gwyneth Paltrow (Pepper Potts), Don Cheadle (James Rhodes) and Jon Favreau (Happy Hogan), while Ben Kingsley plays the menacing Mandarin. A great way to kick off the summer movie season.
2. MARVEL NOW! The groundbreaking initiative continues into 2013, with the latest installments of UNCANNY AVENGERS, ALL-NEW X-MEN, INDESTRUCTIBLE HULK, FANTASTIC FOUR and all your favorite series, as well as new additions like NEW AVENGERS by Jonathan Hickman and Steve Epting, SAVAGE WOLVERINE by Frank Cho, NOVA by Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness, and UNCANNY X-MEN by Brian Michael Bendis and Chris Bachalo.
3. THOR: THE DARK WORLD. On November 8, Chris Hemsworth takes up the hammer once more in Marvel’s Thor: The Dark World.” In the aftermath of Thor and Marvel’s The Avengers, Thor fights to restore order across the cosmos, but an ancient race led by the vengeful Malekith returns to plunge the universe back into darkness. Faced with an enemy that even Odin and Asgard cannot withstand, Thor must embark on his most perilous and personal journey yet, one that will reunite him with Jane Foster and force him to sacrifice everything to save us all.
4. SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN. Peter Parker may have spun his last web, but a new arachnid will try to prove he can do better than the original in SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN beginning this January. Dan Slott and artists Ryan Stegman, Humberto Ramos and Giuseppe Camuncoli put the mind of Otto Octavius to the test as he tries to live up to the ultimate responsibility. The former Doc Ock will also make his presence felt in AVENGING SPIDER-MAN by new writer Chris Yost.
5. DIGITAL COMICS. In 2012, Marvel pushed comics forward as the Marvel ReEvolution took full effect with Infinite Comics, Marvel AR, the Marvel Digital Comics shop, an improved Marvel Comics app, and the new Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited Beta reader.This year will bring more ways to read your favorite digital comics, more Infinite Comics and plenty of surprises.
6. THE WOLVERINE. Based on the celebrated series by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller, this movie finds Logan, the eternal warrior and outsider played once more by Hugh Jackman, in Japan. There, samurai steel will clash with adamantium claw as Logan confronts a mysterious figure from his past in an epic battle that will leave him forever changed. Hits theaters July 26, 2013.
7. AGE OF ULTRON. It’s the Avengers’ worst nightmare as their most unbeatable foe, Ultron, achieves his goals and takes over the planet. Over 10-issues shipping throughout March, April and May, Brian Michael Bendis and artists Bryan Hitch, Carlos Pacheco and Brandon Peterson pit Earth’s Mightiest Heroes against a world gone mad in a last ditch effort to save the Marvel Universe.
8. DEADPOOL GETS HIS OWN VIDEO GAME. The Merc With a Mouth has taken control of High Moon Studios and put them hard at work developing his first ever video game, featuring katanas, big guns, fast action, and a few X-Men friends.
9. MORE MARVEL UNIVERSE. The Marvel Universe programming block kicked off inside Disney XD with the premiere of Ultimate Spider-Man and the return of The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes! in 2012. Now fans can expect even more animated action in 2013, starting with the special primetime season premiere of Ultimate Spider-Man Monday, Jan. 21 at 7:00 p.m. ET. Later in the year, keep your eye out for the premieres of Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. and Marvel’s Avengers Assemble.
10. MARVEL HEROES. Currently in Closed Beta, ”Marvel Heroes” brings your favorite heroes and villains to life in their first online MMO RPG. With a story written by Brian Michael Bendis, you can play as Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Deadpool and more, including fan-favorites like Squirrel Girl or Nova. Sign up right now for a chance to participate in the game’s Closed Beta at the official ”Marvel Heroes” website, and stay tuned to Marvel.com for the latest news.
11. MARVEL XP EXPANDS. 2012 saw Marvel XP grow with the edition of the critically-acclaimed ”Avengers Initiative” mobile game. This year brings more episodes for ”Avengers Initiative” as well as new Spec Ops, new seasons of PvP and much more for ”Marvel: Avengers Alliance”! Plus, with new connectivity between the two games, completing challenges in one will now get you exclusive rewards in the other. Sign up for Marvel XP now and get the latest on the Marvel Gaming Universe as it happens.
12. THE X-MEN TURN 50. And they don’t look a day over 49. When Spider-Man turned 50, Peter Parker lost his spot to Doctor Octopus. Follow ALL-NEW X-MEN, WOLVERINE & THE X-MEN, X-FACTOR, CABLE & X-FORCE, UNCANNY X-MEN and the rest of the titles to find out what happens to the mutants.