Monday, January 31, 2011

Jonathan Hickman to write Icon book?

Saying that Jonathan Hickman is an influential creator at the moment would be an understatement. He is currently writing three popular titles for Marvel, including Fantastic Four which recently saw a much publicized death of one of them, and he was even called one of The Architects of the Marvel universe. That’s without mentioning his previous creator owned work that was also critically praised, although this particularly area has been lacking lately, probably from his busy schedule. This could soon change, and it may very well be for Icon, Marvel’s imprint for creator owned material. Hit the jump to find out more.

Who’s in Icon?

Icon has had a short but very memorable list of titles. It’s a very exclusive club to join, with only the most popular, and Marvel-exclusive, creators allowed to join in. As Ryan mentioned in his overview of the Icon imprint, it’s all about building a strong sense of brand, making sure the quality stays high and undiluted.

If one looks at Icon’s current output, you would find that three of the so-called “Architects”, that is to say, the most influential creators in Marvel stable, are already there. Ed Brubaker has Criminal and Incognito (both with Sean Phillips). Brian Bendis has Scarlet (with Alex Maleev), Powers and the upcoming Takio graphic novel (with Micahel Avon Oeming), and Matt Fraction has Casanova (with Fabio Moon and Gabriel Ba). It would make sense that the others would eventually join, particularly when all of them have a strong background in creator owned comics.

Where Does Hickman Fit?

Hickman has always stated that he would continue doing creator-owned for the foreseeable future. In our Fireside Chat with him, he mentioned that he would be releasing an anthology called PLUS! So far, we haven’t seen it, which considering Hickman’s busy schedule with his Marvel title, is totally understandable.

More recently, he also mentioned that his agenda was incredibly full. Again, he mentions a creator-owned project, which could be the same one, and that he was working in a graphic novel at the the moment that would take “take 8-9 months to finish”. This was back in July, so the time frame would be right for this to be close to finished.

Finally, this weekend while answering Formspring questions, when asked about creator owned work, Hickman had this to say...

Q: Do you plan on going back to creator owned books? if so, are you ever going to make the move to icon for creator owned material?

A: Of course, more coming up soon. It's possible I'll have some Icon work coming up.
Does this mean that the creator owned projects that Hickman was working in the past year will be released by Marvel through the Icon imprint? It would certainly be a smart move on their part, having all of a creator’s work under one roof. And now we also know that creators can release graphic novels through Icon, which is what Bendis is going to do with Takio.

However, if you were looking for more of Hickman’s art, you might be out of luck. In another question about his art, and whether he would be drawing a book, Hickman had this to say...

Q: When will you be drawing for marvel?

A: I can't see that happening any time soon. Sorry. Too busy.

What About The Rest?

Of course, this also raises the question of what is going to happen to Hickman’s previous creator owned titles, and what’s going to happen with the rest of the “Architects”.

Through the Icon imprint, Marvel has re-released previous creator owned material. The early trades for Powers were reprinted under the Icon imprint, and more recently they have been reprinting Casanova. To my knowledge, all of Hickman’s previous books are currently in print with Image. However, it might not be out of the question to re-release them eventually.

By the same token, Jason Aaron and Kieron Gillen have well known projects with Scalped and Phonogram. I don’t see Aaron moving Scalped away from Vertigo any time soon, but maybe new projects could be released through Icon soon. Gillen has repeatedly stated that a third volume of Phonogram is out of the question at the moment, that he and Jamie McKelvie are too busy with other projects. Gillen is quite busy as well with Marvel projects, but who knows what the future may hold for them.

In any case, I think this is exciting news, and I’m looking forward to see what creator owned projects Hickman and the rest of Marvel’s writers have planned in the future.

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IronFist Fan said...

Yes is about time Hickman got back to his creator owned projects. Though S.H.I.E.L.D feels like its own world, i am always down for his own stuff as well as nightly news sequel

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