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Tuesday, March 7, 2006


Marvel Comics staged a telephone press conference on Tuesday, surrounding Fantastic Four #536, its ties to Civil War and writer J. Michael Straczynski's upcoming work in FF and Amazing Spider-Man.

Following are highlights:

* Editor Tom Brevoort said that there will be six "Road to Civil War" issues, Amazing Spider-Man #529-531, Fantastic Four #536-537 and New Avengers: Illuminati.

* Asked to give an explanation of Fantastic Four #536, he said that an object -- which turns out to be Thor's hammer -- falls from the sky and lands in Oklahoma.

Reed Richards is called in to examine it, and it turns out a now-resurrected Doctor Doom covets the item.

"It's the first step on the road to bringing back Thor into the Marvel Universe," Brevoort said.

* David Gabriel, vice president of sales, said that Amazing Spider-Man #520 sold out the day before it hit the stands. The second printing of the issue was printed at double the back ordered received.

* Brevoort said that every effort will be made to make sure releases fro Civil War are released in a timely and orderly fashion. "That being said it's a big old crossover with a a lot of moving parts," he said.

It's possible that is a major story element on reveal gets pushed back in production, that connective pieces will also be pushed back.

* Brevoort, who also edited House of M, said that Civil is "three or four times the scale of that." Individual writers were invited to participate in their titles. "Hopefully, it will bring attention to some titles and hopefully in a way that maintains the individual flavor of each book," he said.

* Posters based on the first issue covers by Michael Turner and Steve McNiven will be made available.

* Brevoort said that the three "Road to..." titles will be individual stories. "There will be one or two touchpoints," Brevoort said. "There's a press conference in Spider-Man that's on the television sets in Fantastic Four, but really the stories stand alone from each other."

* Asked how Civil War ties into modern realities, Straczynski said that studies have shown more relationships have been broken up in recent years because of political differences.

Such will be the case in the Spider-Man and Fantastic Four families with the super-hero registration of Civil War.

"In Fantastic Four, Reed goes one way and Sue goes another and a really strong emotional schism erupts," Straczynski said, nothing the team "will fracture in a large way."

"The whole circumstance comes home in a very personal way for the FF," Brevoort added.

* Straczynski said that Peter Parker represents the everyman and that he can look at everything through many different points of views.

* Asked about specific of the role of Thor's hammer, Brevoort said, "Wait and see. It will definitely be an time of interest. Thor will have a slot to fill in Civil War and immediately thereafter."

* Straczynski said the events of House of M will not play into Civil War.

* Staczynski said he's always loved the character of Doctor Doom. "There's a certain nobility," he said. "However odd or wrong, he thinks he's a patriot. He thinks he's trying to build a better Latveria. He has his own code of contact."

Stracyznski said the character has a moral compass. "Granted it points straight to hell, but he has a compass."

The writer also explained that Thor's hammer passes through space and time and opens a breach in Hell, through which Doom escapes. "He thinks he now has the capacity to do something with it," he said.

* Brevoort said a big dome is built around the hammer in Oklahoma. "They find this thing and can't move it," he said. "They deal with it exactly where it struck th Earth," he said.

* Gabriel said that there are plans to collect all the Civil War issues, but not before the end of the year. He said that all of the "Road to Civil War" issues will be collected into one trade paperback at the end of November or early December.

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