Joe Quesada's Cup O' Joe panel started with a phrase from Marvel Comics' Quesada, who said he'd "waited 15 years to say." "Hello New York!"
He was joined by Jim McCann, who offered occasional confirmation on various subjects, and served as projection master supreme from his laptop. As always, the panel consisted of some plugging and an open forum, with Quesada stressing, "This time is your time."
The first slide showed Spider-Man's new costume – "The costume you love to hate or hate to love, whatever you want to call it," said Quesada.
Top Cow and Marvel are joining up with a "wonderful packaging deal" that gives Marvel the ability to use the Top Cow resources. Tyler Kirkham's work on "Amazing Spider-Man" #530 was showcased.
Mark Silvestri is "working on a huge project" with Marvel this year.
"Captain America" by Ed Brubaker was given a simple plug by Quesada, "Buy this book!"
Plans for "Daredevil" were briefly discussed. "Matt Murdock is in jail" is the title. Quesada added, "Kids…bad things happen in jail!"
"Iron Man" with Daniel Knauf (writer/creator of HBO show Carnivale), and his son Charlie (a screenwriting "Marvel geek") was profiled and Quesada conceded that, "Ellis and Granov took a long time. It's coming out monthly again, I promise you!"
Quesada discussed the future wedding between Black Panther and Storm. "My favorite part is the bachelor party, and there WILL be a bachelor party."
"Fantastic Four" will bring about a death in the family, which has been the subject "of much controversy on the internet," said Joe. He continued, "For those three guys out there, 'Chill, man!'"
"Runaways / X-Men" by Vaughan and Young will be Marvel's offering on Free Comic Book Day. Quesada told the excited crowd, "You can applaud, you get that for free." An image appeared immediately thereafter with the tag-line, "Now killing Alpha Flight every month!" The audience roared its approval.
Interior Art from New Avengers #17 by Mike Deodato, Jr. was also shown (below).
Quesada then took a moment to "bring up a young buck of an artist," John Romita, Jr. Laughter ensued as the former "Young Hunk of the Month" took the stage. Described by Quesada as the "World's Greatest Comic Book Artist," Romita "has re-upped his exclusive" with Marvel. "It involves more than Johnny just drawing for us," said Quesada, alluding to "The Eternals" in June 2006 with Neil Gaiman. Romita added, "I thank Joe" for the opportunity to work on Eternals.
Quesada said "one of the things Neil is doing with Eternals is [tying] it in to the fabric of the Marvel Universe. The Eternals will be that other race" we need in the universe.
The first question of the Q & A session began with whether Stephen King would be contributing soon. Quesada answered, "2007. [He's] absolutely coming! Dark Tower."
An audience member mentioned that "Runaways / X-Men" was first announced with artist Seth Fisher, who has since passed away. Quesada responded "Unfortunately…Seth passed away at the end of his Iron Man story. [He was] a brilliant talent. Skottie Young…will be doing the art."
Will Thor return to his own series? "No, I can't tell you anything about Thor," Quesada said, but he suggested fans look to Fantastic Four for answers.
Regarding a Peter David exclusive, Quesada offered, "Right now he's doing X-Factor with Wonder Man coming out."
A fan asked, "Why did it take so long for Spidey to become a full time Avenger?" Quesada said, "I don't know, I think it just took us a little time to come to our senses."
"Ultimates 3" is "scheduled for later on this year."
So, what is the future of the Punisher in MAX and regular universe? "I think in the future he kills people, but I don't want to spoil…there's some interesting stuff happening in the regular universe. You're going to see him in an interesting role."
In regards to the idea of villains assigned to heroes in Millar's Spider-Man, Quesada offered that "Mark will be playing with some more of that in Civil War."
"Besides Front Line we'll have two" Civil War tie-ins. There will be one mini-series" in Civil War that will take the place of a book that is going on hiatus." That book is Young Avengers, which will be reborn as "Civil War: Young Avengers / Runaways."
When asked about hints that an "Avengers" book will be launched later this year, Quesada vaguely responded, "There's really not much I can say about it right now. It's too early to discuss. There's some mayhem coming to the world of Avengers."
New plans for the Ultimate Universe? Quesada said "I can't get into details. You guys have probably heard me talking about the big crossover, but I'm just going to leave it right there."
CB Cebulski's "Dakota North" is "not in the schedule just yet," but the character will appear before the series (note: she's already appearing in "Dardevil").
What are the plans for the Sentry after the mini? Joe said there had been "some talk about Sentry on-going. He's around."
Is Patriot going to get any real powers soon? Says Joe: "I can't answer that right now. We thought about leaving him a drug addict because I like the message it sends out to kids. I don't like smoking in our books, but shooting up is COOL!" The audience erupted into laughter.
Why no "Marvel Essentials: Sgt. Fury"? Quesada deferred to David Gabriel: The "first "Masterworks" just came out." An "Essentials" is coming next.
When asked if there was any chance of seeing Marvel heroes outside of New York, Quesada said, "We're really kinda focused on the ones in New York. More than anything, New York offers you the best landscape for superhero fights. It just makes for better story-telling. I think you'll see more of a global picture with respect to Civil War."
Will Marvel feature any new genres along the lines of westerns or romance? "We're doing apes! I don't think we have anything scheduled yet. If anybody's got some good ideas…we're listening."
What is Rawhide Kid's future? "There is a mini-series I'm getting a pitch on…by Ron Zimmerman. The 'Fabulously Magnificent Seven!'"
Are there any plans for the Inhumans? Quesada said, "Yes, there are plans…but it will probably take us 12 months to get there."
The inevitable question about the New Warriors was asked, and Quesada advised, "Read Civil War #1"
Will there be any "Marvel Zombies" follow up plan? "No follow-up plan. We do know they are in 'Ultimate Fantastic Four.'"
How about Brubaker's books and his role in the Marvel universe? "He's very good friends with Brian…Ed knows continuity as well as Tom Breevort."
Professor X is due for a comeback.
There are plans concerning Jeph Loeb, but Joss Whedon is simply staying on "Astonishing X-Men" right now.
When asked who Quesada would most like to work with now that Stephen King has successfully come to Marvel, Quesada said, "Shakespeare. I would love to get Steven Hunter."
When asked about the whereabouts of Speedball, John Romita, Jr. asked if the question was "rhetorical," and Quesada added that they were considering optional names such as "Speed" and "Ball."
The only detail about Kirkman and Hester's new book was that "it has Wolverine on one page."
Brian Michael Bendis appeared to answer a question regarding the inconsistency of Nick Fury's recent appearances, offering "No comment," but he did advise that readers check out the "Illuminati Special."
The audience was then treated to an extensive trailer promoting "Civil War," complete with chilling images and ambient music. The promo ended with an image of Captain America's bloody shield and drew "Ooohs" and "Aaaahs" from the crowd.
Bendis responded to developments between Tony Stark and Peter Parker by saying, "It was something Straczynski came up with…Tony sees a little bit of himself in Peter." When asked if Parker needs a hero, Quesada was shocked, "Why not?!"
Bendis went on to answer a question regarding Free Comic Book Day with this advice: "If you shoplift, every day is Free Comic Book Day."
Ronin "comes back big time" in "New Avengers" and will be a supporting character in the new "Spider-Woman" ongoing series.
Bendis drew groans from the audience when asked about a Wasp/Yellowjacket reunion. "Hasn't he slapped her enough?"
The final question of the event was replied to by Bendis, who enthused that "No book at Marvel will be more seismically changed after "Civil War" than "New Avengers."
CBR's coverage of the New York Comic-Con is Sponsored by Comics Unlimited.