Yet Another Marvel Event: Empyre

Today we’re going to take out first look at the next Marvel crossover event called Empyre. Then I’ll dig into the details for what we can expect out of this story!

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Now, Empyre’s earliest issues are coming out April 2020. Al Ewing and Dan Slott will be writing this story with art by Valerio Schiti <SKIT-EE> and plenty of others, including RB Silva, Pepe Larraz, and Jim Cheung. The majority of this story will revolve around the Avengers and Fantastic Four, a telling move that reflects the changing dynamics behind the scenes as the latter team once again returns to the front and centre of Marvel storytelling. Marvel has said our heroes will be going up against the Kree and Skrull, with deliberate references to older Marvel stories and the fact that these were traditional enemies of the Avengers and Fantastic Four respectively. Swordsman, an often overlooked Avengers character, and his history, also plays some sort of major part in this event. There are also pretty clear references to the first big crossover event Marvel ever did, the Kree-Skrull War. The Young Avengers and their member Hulkling, a Kree-Skrull hybrid, will be heavily featured in this upcoming story, too.

Hulkling has apparently become the Emperor of a unified Kree/Skrull alliance, which almost certainly is bad news for Earth. Hulkling gets his own tie-in comic which suggests in spite of his powerful position, he may be sidelined for much of the story and likely has to deal with politics beyond his own loyalty to Earth and the Young Avengers. The cover for the first Avengers Empyre comic shows Hulking fighting with the Avengers, so we will have to see what he ends up doing in this story. That comic is paired with a Fantastic Four issue, both #0 stories that will set up what is to come. It seems like each #0 issue details the beginnings of the Empyre event, likely some sort of invasion or conflict with the Kree and Skrulls. The Avengers seem to initially come into conflict with the Kree in somewhere called the Green Area of the Moon, while the Fantastic Four seem to be facing the Skrulls, followed by them apparently getting a preview of the event’s ending, followed by them meeting a previously unknown Elder of the Universe named the Profiteer. The Elders are a bunch of powerful cosmic beings in the Marvel universe. Many of you might recognize ones such as the Collector or the Grandmaster from the MCU. Finally, a lot of the latest issues of the New Avengers series currently running have been setting the stage for Empyre, if you’d like to learn more about the event.

I’m pretty optimistic about the story overall. Snark about Marvel and DC’s endless parade of these things aside, Marvel has had a pretty good track record when it comes to their event comics the last few runs. This one also seems interesting in the way it draws upon Marvel history both old and new, and I’m hoping we get something more meaningful than a classic alien invasion. Al Ewing is a talented writer, and Dan Slott… well, I think, overall, that this story could work and be a lot of fun at that. Let me know what you all think in the comments section below, thanks for watching, and don’t forget to like, subscribe, and keep reading comics.

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