Marvel's Time Runs Out Event Teases Possible Universal Reboot

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Marvel's Time Runs Out Event Teases Possible Universal Reboot

Marvel's Avengers books are jumping ahead eight months in time for an event bearing some similarities to DC's universal shake-ups.

Although Marvel Comics plays down the effects of aging, its characters have been part of a mostly continuous universe since its creation in the 1960s. It's a major distinguishing factor from competitors at DC Comics, who tend to reboot the universe and tells some new origin stories every few years. So far the arrangement has worked well, but according to the rumor mill Marvel might be setting up a very similar redesign. Heralded by various reality-breaking shenanigans within Jonathan Hickman's Avengers books, Marvel's Time Runs Out event will shake-up the entire company in May 2015. The exact nature of the change remains to be seen, but the similarities with DC's New 52 means that a reboot could very well be in the cards.

Jonathan Hickman's run on Avengers and New Avengers introduced alternate realities threatening to break into the Marvel Universe, raising the possibility that one world might need to end so another could survive. In DC Comics, these kind of events are guaranteed to at least alter the backstory of a few heroes if not an entire canon. Crisis on Infinite Earths, for example, merged countless realities into a single timeline, while Flashpoint's time-traveling premise gave birth to the New 52 universe.

At the Diamond's Retailer Summit in Las Vegas, Marvel teased that this storyline would come to a head in Avengers #35 and New Avengers #24 when both books jump forward in time by eight months. It's probably worth noting that DC is gearing up for its Five Years Later event in September, which is itself expected to impact stories in the current DCU timeline. With all the similarities, retailers are wondering whether Marvel intends to just give in and reboot, but we'll probably have to wait a real-time year before finding out what's planned.

Personally, I'm not certain a Marvel reboot is being planned, but it wouldn't exactly surprise me either. There are a lot of inherent problems when maintaining a massive continuity across hundreds of books, making it far easier to simply retell origin stories or dabble in parallel universes. That being said, breaking the core continuity now would be a bold move requiring the utmost of care, especially since similar reboots turned out to be problematic at best.

But since we're at the rumor stage and rampant speculation isn't going to make a difference, let's just pretend that Time Runs Out is building to a merging of the Marvel and Star Wars universes. Make it happen, Disney.

Source: Bleeding Cool


They are teasing a possable universe wide reboot and yet they have been making a big deal about the fact that they are going to kill off Wolverine?

I think most people are already rolling their eyes at that due to the fact popular characters never stay dead long but if they kill him off only to reboot the entire Marvel universe, if this happens then it would be the quickest character revival in comic history.

Oh fuck my life, no, please don't do this.

I know this centers on the Avengers but can we get a Guardians of the Galaxy/Star Wars cross over?

Nah just kidding, don't.

A reboot would get rid of all my interest in the books. It's like erasing history. DC can't go a decade without a reboot because they fear the continuity they let their writers constantly play with. If Marvel is worried about lagging sales, they should look in the mirror because it's them that is killing them. Book prices are outrageously expensive. If sales are dropping, that is precisely why

I wouldn't take too much stock into it. The source is from Bleeding Cool, a site that is more rumor mill than actual news. The Outhousers actually called them out on this crap.

Hopefully this is not true cause the last thing Marvel should EVER do is play DC's dumb-fuck game of "hit the reset button on our universe". If your writer or editor is too lazy to adhere to the continuity or lacks the actual talent to maintain the past, DON'T HIRE THEM! It's not that hard to catch up on the past. There is a reason wiki's exist and there are compassionate fans who can lend a hand (we exist, we just need to perform a final solution to the knuckle-draggers that give this hobby a black eye). Also, Moviebob pretty much covered this issue waaay back in a Big Picture episode. Continuity is not the issue, lack of marketing outside the comic book industry is!

No. Keep Star Wars away from the Marvel Universe. Keep Star Wars away from everything. I don't want super heroes or villains showing up that carry the ability to destroy a planet with their pinkie. Plus, there's also the fact that when a character dies in Star Wars, they stay dead (with only one exception that I can think of). I know this was meant as a joke, but I must squish the idea before it even has a chance. I'm sorry. Moving on...

I don't know...DC hasn't been having much luck with their reboot from what I've been hearing. And plus, didn't they just announce that Wolverine was going to actually die? That's a huge move, and I applaud them for doing it if it turns out to actually be him dying and dead. But this? This would cheapen the entire thing. If you want to shake up the Marvel Universe, then keep it going, but start doing what you plan to do to Wolverine: let long-running characters die, or retire. Start bringing in new blood and new heroes without constantly falling back on the old ones. Like what was done with the alternate Sipder-Man universe where Miguel (is that his name?) is Spider-Man now. Do that, don't reboot the whole thing.

Yeah, if Feige saying they have 28 years of movies planned, I seriously doubt Marvel is going to be rebooting much of anything without horribly messing with movie continuity...

Didn't they JUST do this with Marvel NOW? They may have a serious shakeup in the Status Quo (for a few years) but this is way too fast for a reboot, even DC waited longer then that. I mean hell, NOW just started, the Issue #1 of a lot of comics are still up on the shelves of comic book stores. This is either a massive misinterpretation of an event crossover or the biggest misstep Marvel has done since letting the writers do whatever they wanted during Civil War and forgetting that no, you need to keep things consistent when dealing with something like that.

Yeah, if Feige saying they have 28 years of movies planned, I seriously doubt Marvel is going to be rebooting much of anything without horribly messing with movie continuity...

They have plans to make movies in the MCU until 2028, which would make it 20 years of continuity, but the comics don't effect the MCU anyway so it's not a big deal in that regard.

Now was not so much a complete retcon of continuity as it was a starting or jumping on point. The point was to basically simplify the referenced continuity and frontload information in order to make jumping on easier for someone who hasn't been reading comics for 30 years.

The last thing Marvel needs to do is do a DC style burn it all to the ground and start over. Marvel has always been a little more accepting of smaller moving retcons along the way to keep things reasonably current and yet not mess with core stories. (ie Tony Stark's origin shifting from Vietnam / Southeast Asia to Afghanistan). Just jetison some of the true crap in a quick painless way and move on. 'Hey Spiderman didn't you used to have a bunch of clones?" "Nope it was all just a bad dream caused by a late night burrito meal from a truck." DONE! You could wipe out most of the 90's this way. Better yet don't bother retcon'ing anything... just never mention or reference the 90's ever again... you know, kind of like they do now.

No. No, just no. This won't make it easier for new readers, it'll make it harder, since any old stories they want to pick up won't mesh continuity-wise with the new ones that -- provided the reboot worked as it should -- got them into Marvel in the first place.

You know, I'm kind of wishing this is a continuation of the Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe series.

Why? I hate reboots with a passion, if you want make up new stuff and see if it can out sell the old fine but no reboots please....

Just replace "paint" with "industry franchise" and you'll understand my position on this:

Reboot = years of not having to come up with new ideas as you can spend a lot of time just re-inventing old ones. It's like fanfiction, potentially interesting, but you know goes nowhere.

Doubt it's the case though. The Avengers have been playing alternate timeline / future a lot lately, so it's probably al that crap coming to a head.

Not gonna happen.
Marvel isn't stupid enough to reboot.

CAPTCHA: vorpal sword


Don't do this!


I'm JUST starting to get used to the status quo. I just got to know what the Civil War was all about, and what the initiative was and who Kamala Khan is.

DON'T hit the reset button now! I've just gotten invested, dammit!

If they're going to do this, hopefully they do it better than DC did. I still dont know who Damian Wayne is or why I should care (Well, I do, but because of Wikipedia, not the New 52). Five Bat-books is still incredibly confusing and daunting to the uninformed.

They are teasing a possable universe wide reboot and yet they have been making a big deal about the fact that they are going to kill off Wolverine?

Sounds just about like Marvel.

Yeah, if Feige saying they have 28 years of movies planned, I seriously doubt Marvel is going to be rebooting much of anything without horribly messing with movie continuity...

Really? I think the opposite. Just imagine how they could mold continuity to the cinematic universe.

Not that it's necessarily a good thing....

I'm not a fan of the idea, but the Tribunal's dead, the Phoenix is dead....sorta, except for some nonsense with the cancerverse, in the future, and now Uatu's dead. This might explain why the new X-men - time-lost teenage Scott, Jean & Co can't go back - the universe is collapsing behind them, basic Dr. Who logic. Oh whatever, blow it up, or better yet, have Franklin step in and say "No More Multiverse". If they want to make it a thing where they retell old stories, lets slap a deus ex machina in there that's a repository for the events of the old verse. In Heroes Reborn, it was Franklin Richards. In House of M it was Layla Miller. Age of Apocalypse, it was Bishop. That way if things don't work out as they hoped, they have an exit strategy.

On the whole "Universe breaking" story, did anyone else notice that the latest universe set to go kaboom has carbon copies of the Justice League to face off against Marvel's Illuminati? I know it's kinda Marvel's thing to prod DC a bit by beating up Marvel versions of DC characters but come on, it's almost old hat after what happened with the Sentry. Hyperion's even an avenger now just cuz 2 super strong god beings on the team weren't enough.

You don't need to reboot a universe. Look at DC, they rebooted and they've gone to complete crap.

So will this 8 months leap tie in with the main comic afterwards? Image did something interesting when it first started, they brought out issue 25 early for a number of titles. This was an official issue 25 like reading a comic from the future. An the current issue (say 15) would eventually lead up to events in that issue 25.

I wouldn't discount it, comics creators will do anything to sell books, and the whole "let's reboot, or shake up the continuity" is now a stock trick. As a general rule one of Marvel's big selling points has been not doing this to the same extent, though it's threatened to do it a number of times.

I'd imagine the whole idea is that they want to make the continuity of the comics match up with the movies more, and have seen people fairly accepting of "the Cinematic Universe". They however probably want to be able to have just "The Marvel Universe" without having to worry about the distinctions. Especially seeing as like pre-Crisis DC they have parallel dimensions which include all the incarnations and separate universes (Ultimate, Zombies, etc..). In theory I could see some marketing hot-shot deciding that they could do a "Crisis" type event and then decide to take what they think is the "best" of the various universes and put them together.

I just can't see it going over well though, as half the point of "Marvel" and what has kept a lot of people loyal was them staying away from this garbage, and keeping characters more or less stable across several generations now. Rebooting the universe just for millenials would be the idea, but at the end of the day they rely on the deep pockets and nostalgia of Gen Xers and Baby Boomers to keep these characters going, and the new generation has already kind of embraced them as they are, differences from the movies included.

I anticipate we might see something like this, along with claims that things will stay that way, followed by a backlash full of tons of publicity, probably timed to coincide with "Avengers 2", and eventually Marvel will "back down". Either that or they will use it as an excuse to borderline retire the publishing end of their business and focus entirely on other kinds of media properties which are supposed to be a lot more valuable (at least for the moment) anyway.

Not to mention that a big part of doing any such reboot is to make things more politically correct, and less controversial. I've noticed for example the whole "Lobo" reboot that was even linked to here (a DC character), with the new version missing the point of what made the character popular. That was probably done in part because of some of the more controversial aspects of the character, other than the violence, such as one of his powers being complete and total immortality given a divine technicality in neither Heaven or Hell being willing to take him. Now if you know DC's cosmology from having followed "Sandman" and such you can see how this kind of thing can happen, before you even get into Lobo. With Lobo though, to explain why things work this way your pretty much dealing with metaphysics that could offend some viewers just by mentioning Heaven and Hell (or seeing them interact with Lobo). Unlike say "Hellblazer" which an be done as a horror movie totally separate from the DC universe, Lobo is a character that kind of needs to interact with regular super heroes and "high camp" goings on to really work. The new version is more friendly to mass media properties down the road, and seems like a boardroom compromise, but one that of course is not likely to go over well with people who liked the character to begin with. The point here is that in going this way Marvel is likely to cause a lot of problems like this, and given it's more serious tone (on average) and that it's strength is it's relative continuity I don't expect a reboot to last.

Nope. Rebooting is what you resort to when you have run out of original ideas.

Comic book fans are a fickle bunch. Reboot is how you lose, not gain customers. Just ask DC.

Comic book fans are a fickle bunch. Reboot is how you lose, not gain customers. Just ask DC.

Precisely. DC's New 52 failed to do its job, and the "new, accessible" universe is now infinitely more complicated than it was before the reboot, a massive number of fans were alienated compared to the new readers that only bought #1 issues, and, almost universally, every last single character apart from Aquaman was WORSE than before the reboot (poor Starfire and Lobo).

Marvel NOT rebooting their universe every few years and making all these new characters and stories I had recently loved invalid and non-canon is one reason I prefer Marvel comics... even if I have been waiting well over a year for my favorite hero Nova to fly back into active duty.

Isn't that why they had the Ultimates? So they could change/put new spins on characters without the 60 years of baggage?

Never having been a big comic reader (but always having been a marvel fan), I only recently caught up with most major events of the last 10-15 years. After hunting down compilations of many major events, I can't imagine trying to get into a rebooted continuity.

But since we're at the rumor stage and rampant speculation isn't going to make a difference, let's just pretend that Time Runs Out is building to a merging of the Marvel and Star Wars universes. Make it happen, Disney.

If they want to include Kyle Katarn or Mara Jade in The Avengers 3 I'd be totally down for that! I mean, since they've been pseudo erased for Star Wars canon they might as well get used somewhere else kick-ass.

Reboots are hot stuff in the entertainment industry right now, so it's not out of the question. Plus, Marvel has too much continuity for ALL of it to be expected to count.

Heck, maybe this event will solve that last problem. Retroactively split the various threads of Marvel's vast continuity into groups of alternate realities, weeding out the dumber or more problematic eras so the editors can determine what the "real" history is based on what works best, what people remember best, and what people like.

Thought Inferno was cool? That totally happened. Thought Spider-Man getting Captain Universe powers during Acts of Vengeance was stupid? That was an alternate reality. Daredevil's yellow costume? Never existed. Spider-Woman raised by a space cow? Nope. Thor was a frog man that time? He sure was. Asgard was transported to a spot high above New York City for a while? No. Gwen Stacey + Norman Osborne? Nuh-uh. Hank hit Jane? No. Peter Parker married Mary Jane? Coin-flip. Civil War? Never. No more mutants? Alternate universe. Heroes Reborn? Isn't that already an alternate universe?

Anyway, you get the idea. The awesome, radical, brilliant idea.


I honestly doubt they'll reboot since they've always avoided it and are perfectly happy to just retcon things rather than completely undo their entire continuity. Not to mention DC's New 52 was a dismal failure on almost every possible level. I guess that's to be expected when your universe wide reboot reboots some things, not others, and leaves any explanation for how and why some things are still canon utterly contrived and impossible to believe even by comic book story telling standards.

Anyway, I truly hope they don't reboot. Marvel has been doing some damn fine work amongst their best titles for years now, and to undo it for the sake of trying to grab a few new readers who don't give a shit anyway is just not a good idea. The people who want to read about their favourite characters will do so regardless of how hard it is to jump right into the middle of something. I started reading comics when I was 4 or 5 years old for example. Did I know the entirety of Superman or Spider-Man's back stories? Fuck no. But I knew Richard Donner's Superman was one of my favourite movies, and Spider-Man could web swing and climb walls. I didn't need to know anything else to get into it and I figured out the rest as I went along.

The one thing that actually stands against them doing a DC style reboot is believe it or not Disney. There is a reason IP owners like Lucas, Henson and Marvel sold out to Disney in particular. They tend to be very careful stewards of IP, and as a general rule frown on things like wholesale reboots. They have a stronger history of building off of the past, maybe giving it a new spin, and updating and moving forward from there. They may jetison some specific bits over the years (such as the EU) but typically frown and wiping everything out and starting over. Because that "everything" is what holds value to them. Not simply the characters but the history. While the editors at Marvel might wish to dive into a New 52 style reboot, I think their corporate overlords will take a lot of convincing. I somehow suspect that the current instructions around the Marvel offices are "You dudes are LOSS LEADERS. DO NOTHING TO FLUCK UP THE MAGIC MOVIE MONEY MACHINE!"

This is why I can never fully get into comics. The "reboot threat" always looms about ready to fuck everything up.

God I hope not, especially considering how the New 52 over at DC turned out...

Is Peter talking to the devil again?

So It isn't just Star Wars Disney is retconning things out of existence for.

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