Marvel Teases "Fresh Start" for Superhero Comic Book Line

The relaunch in May will put a focus on "jumping-on points" for new and lapsed readers, according to the publisher.

Marvel Entertainment has released a promotional video teasing “a fresh start” for its superhero comic book line this May, with creative team changes and a return to the classic versions of characters including Iron Man, Thor and Captain America.

“I can say, walking through these halls, I’ve never seen more enthusiasm and excitement for where Marvel comics is going this year,” emphasizes Editor-in-Chief C.B. Cebulski in the promotional short, which teases “New series, new creative teams, new directions [and] new beginnings.” “Not since Marvel Now [the 2012 relaunch of Marvel’s publishing line] have we had such an over-arching, line-wide change of talent on the Marvel comics line,” he adds.

The much-anticipated relaunch has been in the works for some time following the flop of last fall’s similar line-wide relaunch Marvel Legacy, which saw the publisher criticized for renumbering its titles and pushing too heavily in a nostalgic direction. (More important, sales continued to drop across the line, with the relaunch failing to halt the sales decline for longer than branded promotional issues.) The name of the new relaunch, “A Fresh Start,” is as clear a break from the retro-sounding focus of “Legacy” as possible.

The promotional artwork accompanying the release, by Jim Cheung, features characters with high media profiles outside of comics, including Deadpool, Logan, Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, Daredevil, the Punisher, Black Panther, Doctor Strange, Ant-Man and the Wasp. Notably, the image also features the original Thor, Captain America and Iron Man, all of whom had been replaced in recent years.

The most recently created characters in the image are Ms. Marvel (who debuted in 2013) and the Robbie Reyes incarnation of Ghost Rider, who first appeared in 2014; unlike past Marvel relaunch images, there is no debut of a mystery character or new redesign for an existing hero.

Marvel Entertainment told The Hollywood Reporter that information about the creators and series that will make up the “A Fresh Start” relaunch will be released in the coming days and weeks. With a May launch date given, it should be noted that the publisher should release its publishing schedule for that month at some point in the next week.