While originally intending to post this within a day or two of my most previous post, I felt that it could wait until it was closer to the actual "reveal".
Anyway, as written in my last post ([HERE]), we all saw the various teaser images that alluded to the gathering of several characters in the post "Fear Itself". They were DR. STRANGE, SILVER SURFER, RED SHE-HULK and IRON FIST.
While the meaning of the various wordplay images might differ from person to person, I feel fairly confident that it's all right there in the teaser itself - especially the caption; "It's Either IN you or It's NOT."
And the only word that is IN all of the characters is DEFENDER - except for the outlined figure of the HULK - within whom it does NOT.
So, to me, it's that Hulk is the rogue agent who is the initial catalyst for these four Defenders to unite.
Whether Hulk is to be a long-term bad guy or just gone off the rails (yet again) is not certain.
But what is certain is that these teasers have long-time fans of the classic "non-team" chomping at the bit.
So, until the Comic-Con event officially sheds some light on this project, allow me to illuminate a little on the mystery of the teaser images.
Specifically, where the images originated and to definitively reveal just who is whom...
"The Last Shall Be First"... well, the HULK image was the last to be revealed, and it is presented below alongside the actual comic image from which it was taken.
Hulk image from DARK REIGN : THE HULK # 1 (art by Frank Cho)
It's been questioned as to WHY the Hulk's pants are black (those people swear that it is to be the RED HULK, but RULK is known to be occupied in the coming months)... and the answer is hidden in the word jumble of this Hulk. Something happens to HULK and he undergoes another color shift... this time to ONYX HULK.
IMMORTAL IRON FIST # 6 (by David Aja)
Fans question the reasoning as to why a fairly "low level" character like Iron Fist is to be in this line-up. I believe it has something to do with his new ties to AGAMOTTO.
(as last seen is issues of New Avengers - review of same ([HERE] - although there are others in that series. All within a post of each other.) as well as the newest issue of Iron Man 2.0 # 7.
RED SHE HULK
RED SHE-HULK taken from the issue of HULK # 22 (by Ed McGuinness)
Red She-Hulk will be drawn into this fold by the very nature of the fact that she is the Hulk's ex-wife and wished to be there to help him (or hurt him bad!).
SILVER SURFER from the BACK cover of the "DANGEROUS ARTIFACTS" special (by Claudio Castellini)
A classic DEFENDER, it is good to see the Surfer back with his compatriots on this fairly "Earth-based" team.
Doctor Strange's pose was taken from a fairly recent Marvel promotional art sample (what Marvel sends out to prospective vendors and manufacturers to use as production art).
That computer colored image was itself inspired by artwork from the old 1982 series * of "Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe" issues (# 3 - with art by Paul Smith)
FAR, far too many reasons why Doctor Strange needs to be on this team:
- His lineage as the de-facto Leader of nearly every incarnation of the Defenders.
- His need to somehow fix things with HULK after the whole World War Hulk debacle.
- His slow rise to power and reclamation of same after losing his position as Sorcerer Supreme.
- His big role (soon to be seen) in the end of FEAR ITSELF as one of the MIGHTY (a grouping of which many of these Defenders are also comprised).
- To get him away from BENDIS!
For these are... THE DEFENDERS!!!
* Footnote: Incidentally, that Paul Smith illustration was used for most subsequent incarnations of the "Marvel Handbooks" as well, and up until only very recently when it was replaced by the photoshopped version, was very nearly THE representation of Doctor Strange to the outside world.
This little tidbit is just a placeholder - as we wait for the official reveal of what we ALL KNOW is to come...