The Avengers vs. X-Men panel is completely packed, standing room only. I arrived about 10 minutes before the start because I had been covering the Womanthology panel which was right before it. A testament to the popularity of DC these days is that when my compatriots Brandon and Jesse tried to access the DC New 52 panel 10 minutes before the start it was closed due to capacity.
Sitting on the AvX panel is: former Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Quesada, current Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso, senior VP of creative & creator development CB Cebulski, writer Jason Aaron, writer Rick Remender and artist Frank Cho – who showed up late.
The discussion about Avengers vs. X-Men ranged over several topics expanding beyond just the comic itself.
They used it as a jumping off point to support their digital initiative which they have clearly heard the blowback about the ridiculousness of using a digital copy (as a standalone thing) to promote sales of the book. Marvel has grown the digital brand and within each digital book is special content you cannot acquire anywhere else; similar to DVD extras, etc. They’re calling this ReEvolution.
This was intriguing.
Joe Quesada was a bit proponent of the digital technology and seemed to imply that Marvel would be making a big push in the future towards this market. Though he was always careful to say that local comic shops would always be the best place to get comics…right, sure.
The discussion of the AvX comic covered the main story, which they indicated that unlike previous crossovers would not require you to buy tie-in books to understand, and then proceeded to discuss Avengers vs. X-Men Versus. This is a battle-based-book accompaniment to the main storyline.
The panel talked a lot about how the Avengers and X-men teams had never been involved in the same storyline, to this extent, ever before. That all previous major Marvel Universe stories had always seen these two groups existing separately or not at all within that particular story.
Another point they made was that it was important for them to make sure each team’s position in the “battle” was understandable to the readership; that neither side was right or wrong, just coming at it from a different perspective. This was why the idea had taken so long to come to fruition.
I don’t necessarily agree that there needs to be such a broad perspective. Let characters be hated. If professional wrestling has taught us anything, and I like to think it has, it’s that the heal always gets the fans. The Age of Apocalypse was one of the most popular series’ ever, because the most evil character ever ruled the world.
Overall the panel was pretty good, better than I was expecting and I liked who they brought on, though the individual thoughts of each participant was overshadowed by the company speak that perpetuated most of the panel. I may actually read this title, which I wasn’t originally planning on doing. It will be in trade form, to be sure, though.