Marvel's November solicitations come out this week, but the Nick Bradshaw variant cover for X-Men: Battle of the Atom #1 is already making the rounds, and it's got one fan who hasn't read a comic since 2003 extremely excited to read an event comic based on the premise of heroes fighting other heroes.
"I'm extremely excited to read an event comic event based on the premise of heroes fighting other heroes," said Amber Mitchell, a lapsed fan of Marvel comics, and the X-Men in particular. "I really liked Secret Wars, so I think I'll probably enjoy this too."
In Battle of the Atom, a ten part event that will run through All-New X-Men, Uncanny X-Men, X-Men, and Wolverine and the X-Men, the team of original X-Men starring in "The Great One" Brian Bendis's All-New X-Men will get involved in a dangerous battle, leading some of the X-Men to believe the teens should be sent back in time immediately before they mess up the time stream. Meanwhile another group of X-Men will believe that the time-displaced heroes are here for a reason. The two sides will clash and the Marvel Universe will never be the same (until the following super-mega-crossover event starts six months later).
"That variant really pulls me in," explained Mitchell, who became interested in reading comics for the first time in ten years after seeing the cover on the internet. "Cyclops is one of my favorite characters. While sometimes forced to make tough decisions, he's a true hero who does what's best for his friends and his people, so I'm excited to read about a meeting between a young Scott Summers and the older Scott, who I'm sure is a highly respected member of the superhero community in the Marvel Universe today."
"Add to that, this whole heroes vs. heroes thing, and I'm all in," she admitted. "Of course, I'm sure they'll all work things out in the end, but I'm so sick of seeing heroes fight villains, ya know? Heroes fighting with each other must be very refreshing for Marvel's readership."
For Amber, the concept of Marvel superheroes having a philosophical disagreement and turning it into a bitter war that will have lasting repercussions for the entire Marvel Universe is fresh and new. After all, Amber hasn't read Civil War, or Schism, or Avengers vs. X-Men, or, to a lesser extent, House of M, Avengers Disassembled...
"I'm especially looking forward to seeing both sides in the conflict presented sympathetically, with both having valid points, so that the reader can choose a side and feel like their side is treated fairly by the writers," Mitchell continued. "It's not like Marvel will inexplicably portray one side as mustache-twirling villains or fascist maniacs."
"I mean, if Marvel were to take one or more of my favorite characters and suddenly have them start acting like power-mad lunatics, culminating in a longtime hero killing his mentor using the powers of an evil cosmic bird force, while simultaneously treating a morally ambiguous, hairy Canadian as a sort of Mary Sue who's always right about everything and who is trusted and looked to for guidance by every other character in the Marvel Universe despite his deeply flawed personality, history of kiling his own children, and numerous known attempts to bang other characters' red-headed girlfriends," she elaborated, "then I probably wouldn't like that very much at all."
Um, we hate to tell you this, Amber, but...
"But I'm confident they wouldn't do that," Mitchell interrupted. "Not Marvel. Not the House of Ideas. They're better than that."
Well, we hope you're right, Amber. We hope you're right.
X-Men: Battle of the Atom #1 hits stores in September! Check out Nick Bradshaw's variant cover below: