Marvel Studios may not be at San Diego Comic Con 2023, but that doesn't mean that Marvel fans will miss out, especially if you're a regular comics reader. This year, the House of Ideas is highlighting some of its most interesting current and future runs in an exclusive panel entitled Marvel: Heroes, Hulks, and Super-Soldiers.
The panel features Captain America writer J. Michael Straczynski, Moon Knight: City of the Dead writer David Pepose, and the writer behind the latest horror-centic Hulk run, Phillip Kennedy Johnson. If you're into modern Marvel comics, this panel is a must-watch
And oh yeah, did we mention marvel is teasing the announcement of an all-new Punisher at this panel? Yeah, get ready.
Can't make it to SDCC? Don't worry, Popverse will be live in the room for this panel to break the biggest news and the most interesting insights about the whole thing. You can follow along live with our play-by-play, or come back later for a beat-by-beat recap of the entire thing.
Follow along to the Marvel: Heroes, Hulks, and Super-Soldiers panel from SDCC 2023, as it begins Friday, July 21 at 3:00 PM PST, 6:00 PM EST.
How is everyone doing? This is Joshua Lapin-Bertone, sitting in the front row waiting for the Marvel gang to take the stage. Panel starts in 13 minutes!
– Joshua Lapin-Bertone
Lights just dimmed. Maybe we're starting early!
Yes, we are. Marvel decided to start early. Here we go! Nick Lowe pumping the crowd up.
David Pepose, Phillip Kennedy Johnson, and J. Michael Straczynski just came onstage. Lowe is noting that this is JMS's grand return to Marvel.
C.B. Cebulski has arrrived. The party is ready to begin.
Lowe pumping up JMS's return by listing off some of his historic runs, including Amazing Spider-Man.
"It has been just terrific. It has always felt like home to me for a very long time," JMS on his Marvel return.
When Marvel offered him Captian America, JMS immediately said yes. He noted that he would sneak Cap into his Amazing Spider-Man whenever he could.
"As much as I like playing with the big toys, I'm a character guy." - JMS on his style. His Cap run will focus heavily on New York City.
Captain America will be facing eviction, and forced to borrow money from Iron Man. The run will deal with rent control. Flashbacks focusing on Cap's past growing up in NY after his parent's death.
"I wanted to figure out what made Steve Rogers the character he would become." - JMS
The flasbacks will also deal with the rise of the Nazi party in NY. JMS tracled the time period, and realized it would have been happening during that time in Steve's life.
Surprise! A video trailer for JMS's Cap run is being screened.
According to the trailer, the run will have other Marvel heroes like the FF and Spidey stop by. Don't forget, JMS had great runs on both of those characters.
Spider-Man will show up in Captain America #2.
"It's the first time I've written Spidey since the early Cretaceous period," JMS jokes.
Phillip Kennedy Johnson is now talking about his Hulk run. He wanted to bring Hulk back to his movie monster roots.
"I want to see a story that is a metaphor for addiciton. You've got a guy who is afraid of his darkest compulsions," PKJ said.
"If I only I could control this side of me" - Johnson on what drives Banner.
"I really love folklore and mythology. Comic books are our mythology. I don't remember a time when I didn't know who Hulk was," - Johnson.
"I'm introducing a ton of folklore that I'm hoping will outlive these issues." - Johnson.
Johnson promises lots of monsters, from original creatures to the return of classic Marvel monsters.
Incredible Hulk #6 cover shown, which features a World War II era version of Ghost Rider.
Cebulksi sings the praises of Nic Klein, who is penciling Incredible Hulk.
"His monster designs are just terrifying," Nick Lowe adds.
Johnson wants to get into the monster mythology from old issues of Silver Surfer and Thor. (Johnson really loves classic Marvel monsters)
David Pepose is on deck to talk Moon Knight: City of the Dead.
Pepose pitched Tom Brevoort the idea of introducing the MCU verison of Silver Scarab into the comics.
(If you read the first issue of City of Dead, then you've seen her introduction and it's awesome)
*Scarlet Scarab! Sorry, typing fast.
Oooh. David is announcing something new....let's see what it is...
A slide has been displayed asking WHO IS THE PUNISHER
New series by David Pepose with art by Dave Wachter.
"The man might be different, but the punishment remains the same," Pepose says.
Brevoort had the idea that this would be the Danny Ketch of Punsiher.
The new Punisher is Joe Garrison, a SHIELD agent who loses his family.
"Every page is spectacular, I can't wait for you all to read it," Pepose says.
"Existing fans of the Punsiher, fans that want to join in, we want you all at the table," Pepose says.
Fan Q-n-A is starting. Nick Lowe is reminding everyone that they have no Marvel Studios spoilers.
Little girl asks "What human would you like to turn into a Hulk."
"Not my 5 year old Harry. He already destroys enough of my house," Nick Lowe.
Nick Lowe, "I would love to see Margot Robbie's Barbie turn into a Hulk!"
When asked about dream projects, Phillip Kennedy Johnson says he wants to do a Marvel version of inglourious basterds. CB jokingly approves the pitch.
A fan asks about Charlie, a character who appeared in the first issue of the new Hulk. "Charlie is a character from Kentucky. The story is a lot about Hulk and Banner, and I wanted to see them interact with someome else. Someone who sees themselves as weak and hates themselves." - Johnson says. "Hulk becomes her hero. She wants to be like Hulk. She hates the things about Banner that she hates about herself. She's our window into the new relationships between Hulk and Banner."
A fan notes that Pepose's Hulk annual touches on the same themes as Johnson's run. "That issue encapulates the things I love about comics," Johnson says.
The connections weren't intentional, but the writers did share notes as they broke their stories.
JMS is asked if he would ever did another run on the Twelve. "I would love to do something more in that universe," JMS.
"There is always room for more," Cebulksi.
A young boy asks about where they drawer their stories from. "I try to write in my character's voice until I'm drawn towards osmething. It's a little bit of trial and error," Pepose says.
"There are lot of monsters in Hulk, and all represent some part of my life," Johnson adds.
Another fan asks why they wanted to be comic writers.
"I tried all the stable jobs, and they didn't work out," Pepose jokes. He then goes through a history of jobs he tried, including comic book reviewer.
"I took a leap of faith, and wrote my first comic script."
"It's the best job I've ever had. I've never had a bad day," Pepose adds.
A young boy asks the panel to review Rogers: The Musical. This should be interesting.
"I have no seen it," Cebulski said. "Our director of sales saw it, and said it was amazing."
Lowe asks the kid to sing a song from the musical.
"I could, but I don't want to," the kid answers. The audience erupted in claps and laughter.
JMS is asked about how he approaches characters that have been around for generations.
"My job is to ask the non-obvious question and be counter intuitive," JMS answers.
A fan asks about underappreciated books.
"One of the books I'm most proud of is the Jed McKay Black Cat series. I think the book is brilliant," Nick Lowe.
"Runaways is just such a great book that stands the test of time," C.B. answers.
"Ed Brubaker wrote an issue of Captian America with Gene Colan, which was so good," Johnson recalls.
"Peter David's X-Factor and Immortal Iron Fist by Fraction," Pepose. The titles showed him how you could play with genre.
A rabbi is discussing comics and superheroes with the panel. She has been including superheroes in her sermons for decades. She is asking about finding hope and heroism in the real world. "History bends towards justice, but it is only does that because of what we do. It doesn't do that passively," Johnson says.
Panel is wrapping up. Thanks for joining us. Looks of cool stuff announced. What are you the most excited for?