Welcome to the five hundred and thirty-fourth in a series of examinations of comic book legends and whether they are true or false. Click here for an archive of the first five hundred (I actually haven’t been able to update it in a while). This week, did Marvel nearly reboot their comic book line in 1986? Was Daria really influenced by Enid from Ghost World? And what comic book artist had to flee TWO separate countries due to protesting the governments there?
NOTE: The column is on three pages, a page for each legend. There’s a little “next” button on the top of the page and the bottom of the page to take you to the next page (and you can navigate between each page by just clicking on the little 1, 2 and 3 on the top and the bottom, as well).
COMIC LEGEND: Jim Shooter’s original plan for the New Universe was to just reboot the Marvel Universe.
STATUS: I’m Going With True
Last week, I discussed the New Universe, the line of Marvel Comics created by Jim Shooter that was launched for Marvel’s 25th Anniversary that showed superheroes in the “real world.”
However, the idea for doing this new line of comics was actually the SECOND idea Shooter had for his plans for the celebration of Marvel’s 25th anniversary.
In 2000, Marvel launched the Ultimate Universe, a side line of comics that basically re-created the Marvel Universe from scratch.
That, as it turns out, was Shooter’s ORIGINAL plan for the New Universe!
In 1986, DC had just finished their Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline, and they then relaunched their universe with a bunch of reboots of classic DC series, like Wonder Woman and Superman…
So that was Shooter’s original plan, telling CBR years ago:
You could start everything over from number one, like the Marvel universe reborn. Like the anniversary in May or June, all the titles wrap up the month before and start again the next month. Sort of like Marvel, 2nd edition, do it right and really make that spectacular.”
Shooter also considered that this relaunch would allow him to get creator participation contracts for the likes of Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, et al for their creations, as the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man and the X-Men would all be relaunched (it never got that far, but I don’t believe such a plan would have actually worked, but I suppose Marvel could have just GIVEN the rights away – seems a bit unlikely, though).
But that plan was quickly squelched because Marvel was doing so well in sales that it was decided that it was best not to rock the boat (plus, if he even had broached the topic of creator participation with Marvel executives, that probably didn’t go over well, either). So Shooter quickly moved on to the new universe idea.
Can you even imagine the dramatic shift in comic book history?!
Thanks to reader Bill O. for asking about this one. I was planning to do it anyways after next week, but Bill did write to me about it, so thanks, Bill!
Check out some entertainment and sports legends from this week at Legends Revealed:
On the next page, which came first, Ghost World or Daria?
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