Marvel Comics is proud to announce The Heroic Age, the dawn of an exciting new era of heroism in the Marvel Universe! Beginning in May 2010 with the release of Avengers #1, The Heroic Age ushers in a brighter Marvel Universe and a bold new era for the world’s greatest super heroes as they emerge from darkness with a renewed sense of hope and optimism, leading to the formation of all new teams with new members…and brand new characters! Titles branded with the Heroic Age banner offer a perfect jumping on point for readers new and old alike, as the top comic book creators in the world deliver a Marvel Universe like you’ve never seen before!

Over the past few years, the Marvel Universe and its citizens have found themselves living in a dark age of despair. Beginning with the disbanding of the Avengers, the heroes of the Marvel Universe have been caught in a demoralizing downward spiral that has included the genocide of the mutant population, a divisive civil war between heroes, the assassination of Captain America, a worldwide subversive alien infiltration and invasion, and the media-fueled and publicly-supported ascension of the Green Goblin’s civilian identity, Norman Osborn, to power and control of the United States. Now, the heroes have united once again, stronger than ever and are prepared to face the dangers that lie ahead.

“Our heroes have experienced some of their greatest trials and tribulations recently, but now there’s going to be a renewed hope among their ranks,” said Joe Quesada, Chief Creative Officer & Editor-in-Chief Marvel Entertainment LLC. “As our heroes emerge from the darkness, the Marvel Universe is going to be a more optimistic place than we’ve seen in a quite awhile. But that doesn’t mean we’re making things easy for our characters!”

From the tone of the storylines, to the stunning new artistic look, The Heroic Age ushers in a dramatic new vision of the Marvel Universe. Marvel’s most elite characters will be at the center of The Heroic Age, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, the Fantastic Four, the Avengers and more!

David Gabriel, Senior Vice-President of Sales & Circulation, Marvel Entertainment LLC. added “We’ve been working out the details of The Heroic Age for about a year now. The plan is to give old and new fans alike the perfect place to jump into the Marvel Universe without feeling like they’ve missed out on anything that’s come before.  If there’s a Heroic Age banner on one of the books, we’re serious when we say ‘the Marvel Universe Starts Here!”

A new Age of Heroes dawns this May as The Heroic Age begins and changes the face of comics as you know them! Join Brian Michael Bendis, Ed Brubaker, Jonathan Hickman, John Romita Jr, and more of the industry’s hottest creators as they bring a bold new era for the world’s greatest super heroes, with a stunning new look for the Marvel Universe!

via Marvel

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  1. astrodinosaurus
    January 27, 2010 at 8:37 am — Reply

    Saying it doesn’t make it so. Still though I’m cautiously optimistic they will optimistic. Oh and the new Ironman design(and colour pallet) is pretty cool though its not too original. And I fear it wont be coloured like that consistently(muted yellow/tan and a deep very rich red) which is a real shame.

  2. Salieri
    January 27, 2010 at 8:42 am — Reply

    …I don’t like it all, Jim.

    It looks a wee bit overoptimistic, and also it comes significantly after “Brightest Day”. A hint of copycat…ism here?

    • Jacin B
      January 27, 2010 at 9:51 am — Reply

      That’s what I was thinking. It’s a little too close to being on the heels of Brightest Day, which (if the title is any indication) will likely have similar themes.

      I don’t like it.

  3. Larry King
    January 27, 2010 at 8:53 am — Reply

    This will change nothing, I have been going through my back issues and was surprised to find that the Chuck Austen run that precided Bendis’ was more fun than anything Bendis has done of late.

    This just seems like a waste of time throw back to the late 60’s early 70’s good old days, where everything had so much potential.

    Just take Bendis off the book, give it to Brubaker, who has a much deeper writing style, and also I have far better enjoyed his work of late. Brubaker is much more suited to do the Avengers justice, if their is any justice to do.

    By the way, I think that Iron Man armor is horrid. All those useless lights, it’s not like Tony is going to a Rave.

  4. Armaan
    January 27, 2010 at 9:13 am — Reply

    I actually like the new Avengers line up, if that is them, although I am, like, REALLY curious about what’s happening with Steve Rogers. I am SO glad to see Hawkeye back as Hawkeye, glad to see that Wolverine is out but Spidey is still in, and I’m really happy to see Ben Grimm in there, too. He’s an awesome guy who I think can do really well outside the Fantastic Four. Ha, he is certainly the most stable person in the entire team, except maybe for beast, and a lineup needs that, especially without Steve Rogers around.
    The thing I’m worried about for the Heroic age is this : The plan is to give old and new fans alike the perfect place to jump into the Marvel Universe without feeling like they’ve missed out on anything that’s come before.
    I hate when Marvel does that. It’s like they don’t want their characters to move forward at all. They retconned Spiderman’s marriage because they felt it aged him, same reason they killed Gwen Stacy and Peter’s kid. The Marvel Universe has been through a LOT and that impressed me, but now it’s just going to magically turn back to the way things were? And ALL the backstory that exists is just… pointless?
    That just makes me mad.

    Also, it does seem a bit “Brightest Day” copy catty. You know, DC allows for character growth and aging. I mean, the new Justice League with the new generation Trinity? AWESOME!

  5. January 27, 2010 at 9:16 am — Reply

    Is that “Blue Monkey” Beast? Color me intrigued.

    • Salieri
      January 27, 2010 at 2:25 pm — Reply

      …And thus, we say goodbye to the last significant vestige of Grant Morrison’s X-Men run.

      I miss Xorn.

  6. Mijder
    January 27, 2010 at 9:25 am — Reply

    Is this the new Avengers team? I am of mixed feeling of this.
    A) The team doesn’t include Wolverine…Yay
    B) The team includes Beast and Hawkeye, two of the greatest Avengers ever…YAY
    C) The team includes the Gorilla dude from Atlas when it already has Beast…huh?
    D) The Thing? Okay…he was a West Coast Avenger…so that’s cool…I guess.
    E) Spidey, huh? Okay..I’ll deal…no really I’ll be fine. No Snikt. No Snikt.
    F) Bendis…really why oh why oh why Where is Dan Slott when we need him?

  7. td
    January 27, 2010 at 9:30 am — Reply

    There’s no specific indication that this is the Avengers team. On another comics news website, some Marvel cognoscenti was asked that question and replied with the typical “stay tuned” response.

    I wish the new Avengers book would not start with a new #1 but start by going back to the original Avengers numbering, as they’ve done with Incredible Hulk, Thor, and Spider-Man.

  8. Navarre
    January 27, 2010 at 9:44 am — Reply

    Maybe I am one of the few people who is experiencing a sigh of relief and a feeling of hope. Marvel has needed a shift to true heroism for a while now. I hope this is the beginning of that.

    Some of the recent events in Marvel are good signs:

    The return of Kitty Pryde, who in my opinion, is the link to “normalcy” between the mutants and the regular reader.

    The return of Steve Rogers, the epitome of heroism and the best inspiration for heroes and common folk alike.

    As Marvel has clearly expressed its intent as a company-wide paradigm shift, I eagerly await the Heroic Age.

  9. Mijder
    January 27, 2010 at 10:43 am — Reply

    Also I want this as a wallpaper without that annoying HEROIC AGE text uptop. I love this artist.

    • Navarre
      January 27, 2010 at 11:29 am — Reply

      PhotoShop it?

    • Kirtley
      January 27, 2010 at 9:55 pm — Reply

      I do like the art there but I have two little issues with it, 1) each character looks to be cut and pasted into the picture and not all drawn together, 2) there’s something very strange with Black Widow. I kinda like the character as much as I can for someone who I have a hard time seeing as a full-fledged A-List character but her face looks too young and innocent and that pose she’s rockin’ would make anyone fall over backwards. Unless she’s somehow leaning against Invisible Woman there’s no way that the tip of one foot and the ball of the other can support her as she’s leaning back like that. That’s just an indictment of that one picture, but it keeps drawing my eye away. I also agree that it’s a little strange to have Gorilla-Man along with Beast, it just seems redundant although if you’re trying to include the Atlas group into the fold I feel like Gorilla-Man does have the best hold and ties to reality. I love Hawkeye being in the group, I loved playing as him in the really old X-Men arcade game so he’s always been close to my heart. Two other things that strike me, the first of which is that fact that it’s looking a little like a sausage-fest up there we need Spider-Woman or someone and I don’t know if anyone else likes the character as much as I do but I’d like to see the Vision join the team, he’s a classic member that I always like seeing.

      • Kirtley
        January 27, 2010 at 9:57 pm — Reply

        I meant that Hawkeye was in the old Avengers arcade game, not X-Men.

  10. January 27, 2010 at 10:55 am — Reply

    The Heroic Age = The Shiny Age.

    Despite this coming so close on the heels of Brightest Day, it can’t be copy catty. Both storylines from each company have been in the works for a year+. So, despite similar themes, we can’t really call them out for copying when they only have hints that something similar may be going on at their rival company.

  11. JB
    January 27, 2010 at 10:56 am — Reply

    Well, here we are. Let’s start on a positive note : that image looks like something I could have Photoshopped myself. Which is not a compliment. Sorry for the sarcasm, it just struck me as kind of cheap.

    So, the heroic age. Some of us were talking about all the dark events that had occurred in the Marvel U, and the fact that the period started with Avengers Disassembled would end with Dark Reign. Apparently, Bendis is still at the helm of the Marvel Universe.

    Of course it’s reminiscent of DC’s Brightest Day, but big rivaling companies will be big rivaling companies. Plus given how far both their dark periods go back, it doesn’t seem likely they just ripped off each other.

    So my reaction is : Sure, why not ? It does seem like they know what they’re doing, and a change of mood will be nice, after all the grim’n gritty we’ve had. Let’s it’ll be something different and good.

    • Navarre
      January 27, 2010 at 11:33 am — Reply

      As far as the illustration goes, I agree it looks cheap. The edging on the characters against the gradient background looks like they drew each character and then layered them in. There is no shadow or depth to it at all.

      That’s weak.

  12. January 27, 2010 at 1:30 pm — Reply

    Anyone notice that’s NOT Steve Rogers as Captain America, but apparently Bucky instead? That’s got me interested though, and I’d like to see where this goes next, but I agree with the previous sentiments – its a tad over-optimistic.

    • ~wyntermute~
      January 27, 2010 at 3:47 pm — Reply

      Steve Rogers: Director of Shield. What makes _me_ curious is where does our favorite non-female Fury (Nicholas, that is) find himself?

  13. Downbylaw
    January 27, 2010 at 2:29 pm — Reply

    Wait! I thought ALL Avengers titles were supposed to end when SIEGE ends?!?! Just another reason why I have stopped purchasing the mainstream lot and have started reading the walking dead, the boys, irredeemable, for Deadpool.

    • td
      January 27, 2010 at 8:58 pm — Reply

      All the current Avengers titles ARE going to end–New Avengers, Mighty Avengers, Dark Avengers, and Avengers Initiative, exactly as Marvel said. Then Avengers #1 will start–no one ever said there would not be another Avengers book, and the expectation amongst everyone has been that there would be a new Avengers book (or books) of some sort.

  14. ~wyntermute~
    January 27, 2010 at 3:48 pm — Reply

    WOOOO!! I see Ken Hale prominently featured, and that is all I need to see. ATLAS RESURGENT!!! ^_^

  15. January 27, 2010 at 8:17 pm — Reply

    I love how much we’re all reading into this promo piece. :)

    Maybe the need for optimism isn’t just on the part of the creators?

    • Kevin Breen
      January 28, 2010 at 3:51 pm — Reply

      I agree that the need for optimism isn’t just on the part of the creators. The whole country has moved into a newly optimistic, more “heroic” if you will, age. A lot of the better alternative books have picked up on it. I’ve been waiting for mainstream comics to pick up on it.

      • Kirtley
        January 28, 2010 at 11:34 pm — Reply

        I’m just waiting for the next big event in comics to start up. My guess is that there will be a handful of new heroes that will immigrate into the U.S. from Mexico and other countries and will start saving lives. Next, the current superheroes will all get really mad and start yelling that “They took are jerbs!” and they’ll want to build a superhuman resistant wall between the U.S. and Mexico. Ha ha! Just taking the Law and Order approach, you know, stories ripped from the headlines. It’s always an option…

  16. Rome
    January 27, 2010 at 10:33 pm — Reply

    No way is that the new Avengers team. Its only a promo pick with some of the highlights of Heroic Age in it.

    I’m actually pretty psyched for this. It’s about time we get some real heroics back in our titles.

    I know no one is talking X-men, but I do like the look of Beast and hope we get some more/different/better X stories with this new push. I guess we’ll see.

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