NOW is what is happening!
NOW is what... IS.
NOW is... NOW!
So, what's happening NOW?
In the MARVEL Universe... the FUTURE is NOW!
"MARVEL NOW!", that is.
This, unlike DC's "52" reboot, is not a re-do of any sort, but a publishing "branding" for their current incarnation of regular fan-favorite Marvel titles.
I guess the immediacy of the "NOW!" aspect is to tell "teh kidz" that these ain't yer granddad's Marvel comics! No sir.
However, the irony is that the "NOW" brand is one of Marvel's OLDEST, and like all their old titles, trademarks and names simply can not be allowed to lie fallow.
(Remember Marvel's old 1980's video game magazine; 'BLIP'? Well, Marvel fairly recently reused that hoary old computer title for some of their online content. And that's just one example. Think of ANY old Marvel comic title, character or brand. I'll bet they've nearly all been utilized and re-purposed over the years, haven't they? See? Nothing gets wasted.)
So, when I first saw the listings for the MARVEL "NOW!" branding, I immediately recalled TWO old factoids:
1) Marvel already released a DOCTOR STRANGE comic with the "NOW" header on it... back in 1989!
DOCTOR STRANGE; SORCERER SUPREME # 9
Roy Thomas and Jackson "Butch" Guice
(Actually, all gimmicks aside, a very good issue)
The issue, really a "magazine" article within the comic, featured an excerpt from a tell-all biography about Dr. Stephen Strange, by his then-former-lover; author Morganna Blessing (y'see, she thought he was dead; killed by the Beyonder and wanted his legend known. Looooong story).
Anyway, the comic cover, with the "NOW" header, wasn't really the cover of the comic per se (even though it WAS), but was to emulate the cover of the MAGAZINE wherein the book excerpt was presented; 'NOW MAGAZINE'.
Which brings us to the second factoid that I remembered;
2) 'NOW' Magazine was the magazine that J. Jonah Jameson was editor of - even before the Amazing Spider-Man comics showed a "Daily Bugle".
And 'NOW' Magazine was the hip and with-it mag that let you know if you were cool or totally squaresville.
Flash Thompson = Too cool for school - Hip and NOW
Peter Parker = Nerdsville - totally yesterday, man.
So, while modern readers and fans were going on about how they were going to rip up their 50-year comic collections because Marvel was rebooting their comics and all the history meant nothing, I kinda realized that it was a branding opportunity, merely utilizing one of their oldest "brands".
While I wanted to toss a post here (pretty much exactly like this one) all those months ago, I figured SOMEONE ELSE certainly would, so I continued on with my day-to-day "NOW" life of overwork, getting sick, doing the occasional freelance artwork and fretting, and thought that surely someone else was going to post the "Marvel NOW expose'" any day now....er... NOW!
But that never happened (as far as I NOW... er.. KNOW), and since I am still a few days away from being able to post something more substantial (I DO have a bunch of posts nearly done, but between my day-to-day "NOW" life of overwork, getting sick, doing the occasional freelance artwork and fretting - and the past week of no electricity/heat/water due to Superstorm "Sandy" ***... and the days before the storm getting ready for it - I've yet to get my act together.
So, enjoy the fact that this entire "MARVEL NOW!" reality that Marvel is publishing soon just could very well be nothing more than an elaborate crossover wherein we are subjected to what the Marvel Universe might look like in the fevered psyche of a sleeping J. Jonah Jameson - and when he awakes, all this will have been a dream and the Marvel Universe will go back to what it was before NOW!
Oh, and also remember that no matter what... DOCTOR STRANGE was NOW long before NOW!
A SERIOUS NOTE:
To support the relief efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, donate online or text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
My wife and I had to go to a Red Cross Shelter at the local school where I work (no school all week due to the storm, so no work/pay), because after several days of dumping ice cold water over my head (water that we had the presence of mind to save in jugs before the power went out), we just wanted a hot shower.
Well, the Red Cross arranged for everyone and anyone to have not only THAT, but some hot food and some place to sleep if their homes were uninhabitable.
And that's just here in the Pocono Mountains of PA.
When our power finally came on last night, we were able to SEE the devastation that Sandy had wrought... it is UNBELIEVABLE! Entire neighborhoods; wiped out! Flooding and fires and too many unnecessary deaths! As uncomfortable as we were, the worst we had to endure was the cold (and relapsing back to previous illnesses from which we had only just recovered). Many in states all across the eastern sea-board have suffered far, far worse.
I saw video footage of places were we USED to live (on Long Island, NY, and even NYC) and those places were hit HARD!
So, I've donated (I always do, and frequently give blood whenever I see a Red Cross blood drive), so please, won't you help out? "NOW"? (see how that tied into the blog post? But seriously, not trying to pressure anyone... just a polite request with some funny yuk-yuks tossed in.)