Both companies are running their events at the same time, no shock there, but it does make me wonder which will fare better. Marvel is running Fear Itself, an Asgardian tale centring around Thor as well as Captain America. It’s going to affect the entire Marvel U, as every event does, but it’s really a big Thor/Cap tale. And I’m cool with that.
Then DC is doing a whole alternate universe thing centred around the Flash. It’s really going to affect the entire DCU, natch, as the whole universe becomes alternate. No one is the same, nothing is the same. Everything you know is wrong…etc, etc. That’s the set up.
Looking at both, I want to know the following: which will be better (for me), which will get better reviews (overall), and which will sell better (in the monthly format), and then replicate those questions for the tie-ins? It’s a bit hard to call now, what with only Fear Itself: Prologue having shipped, but these are the thoughts that keep me up at night.
I can only speculate, so here goes:
Which Event Is For Me?
For me, Fear Itself is going to be the tale I follow. I’m pumped mostly to see how Matt Fraction steps up to the plate with an event. I love his work (his old work) and have been pretty meh with his Marvel output of late. Can he produce a game changer with this story? I must know.
Plus, Stuart Immonen’s art. Gold and sold.
Flashpoint sounds good, I must admit – I always was a sucker for an alternative universe. But taking a universe I don’t know and twisting it still feels foreign to me. It’s almost like I want to be pumped for it but it just doesn’t work for me.
That’s a win for Fear Itself as the main series I devour.
Critically, it’s anyone’s game. Fraction can be one of the best writers in the business, at times, and Johns certainly knows how to make with big stories that please a certain sub-section of the fanlad audience. I want to believe Fear Itself will take this category but I worry Fraction is going to extend too far, not stick the landing, and this honour will go to Johns for a solid if not perfect effort. That’s my call, for now.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say Fear Itself will sell better of the two – though the sales charts of late would say I’m a chump for that thought but I’m sticking with it. Marvel readers are going to rally around Fear Itself because there’s nothing building into it; it’s just a big tale. Flashpoint is spinning out of something Flash related, which might turn off some readers if they are not interested in the character.
Then there are the tie-ins. They deserve attention too, people, so let’s all be attentive.
- Fear Itself #1-7
- Fear Itself: The Amazing Spider-Man #1-3
- Fear Itself: Black Widow #1
- Fear Itself: Deadpool #1-3
- Fear Itself: Fearsome Four #1-4
- Fear Itself: Homefront #1-7
- Fear Itself: Sin's Past #1
- Fear Itself: Spotlight #1
- Fear Itself: Youth in Revolt #1-6
- Fear Itself: The Worthy #1-8 (Digital only)
- Fear Itself: The Deep
- Alpha Flight #1-8
- Avengers Academy #15-19
- Avengers #13
- Herc #3
- Iron Man 2.0 #5
- The Invincible Iron Man #503-504
- Journey into Mystery #622-623
- Secret Avengers #12.1
- Secret Avengers #13
- Spider-Girl #8
- Throne of Blood: Birth of a Vampire #1
- Thunderbolts #159-163
I don’t think the tie ins are going to be all that awesome and I can only see maybe a few issues I’ll actually be seeking out. That’s really lame. And such a shame. Well, actually, there's just a lot of these, and most don't seem really necessary but I suppose that is good. If all tie ins are necessary then they're forcing you to buy more. I guess tie ins should just float in the periphery and lure in some but mabe not all.
I'll already be buying Thunderbolts and Journey Into Mystery. As for official tie ins, I'm curious to try The Worthy, because it is digital only. Fearsome Four does souns pretty cool, or at least Howard the Duck and Frankenstein do, She-Hulk and Nighthawk do nothing for me. Cullen Bunn on The Deep with a basic Defenders roster does sound pretty cool, and him on a Black Widow one-shot also works for me. That's probably about it for me.
- Legion of Doom
- Emperor Aquaman
- World of Flashpoint
- Hal Jordan
- Deadman and the Flying Graysons
- Deathstroke and the Curse of the Ravager
- Batman, Knight of Vengeance
- Citizen Cold
- Reverse Flash
- Grodd of War
- Green Arrow Industries
- The Canterbury Cricket
- Secret Seven
- The Outsider
- Abin Sur – Green Lantern
- Lois Lane and the Resistance
- Wonder Woman and the Furies
- Kid Flash Lost Starring Bart Allen
- Frankenstein and the Creatures of the Unknown
- Project Superman
If I want to enjoy some Jeff Lemire written Frankenstein then I can get in and enjoy the good times. I don’t even mind that there are so damn many of these titles, like someone sprinkled fertiliser into the Previews catalogue. I look at this list and see a few I can pick up if I so desire.
I think I want to buy me some Lemire-stein. As well as some Lois Lane chewing bubble gum and kicking ass. And as for Gorilla Grodd, yeah, I could probably do some of that. It appears that I’m more interested in trying a little bit of DC’s smaller characters rather than their big guns.
I think the Flashpoint tie ins will both sell much better and reach much higher levels of critical acclaim. I’d almost say it’s a lock.
Overall – That’s Fear Itself for the main series in quality and sales, but Flashpoint dominating in the tie ins. Will I be proven right…of course, I’m always right. But surely time will tell.
Fear Itself or Flashpoint, which side are you choosing? Obviously you can choose both, but what fun is that? I want you to pick a side. I'm picking Fear Itself. What's your poison?
NOTE: Thanks to Bleeding Cool for the banner image. And don't forget, kids, all opinions expressed within this article are speculation only. The events haven't even really started so I can't truly say just yet, not that it stopped me from trying.