Writer Donny Cates has made it clear that the upcoming event series King in Black will tie into almost all of this Marvel comics to date, and the first previews of the series reveal appearances by multiple Avengers. Written by Cates with pencils by Ryan Stegman, the crossover event will see Knull, the creator of both All-Black the Necrosword and at least two alien races — the Klyntar (symbiotes) and Exolons, arriving on Earth and taking his fight to....literally everyone. In a new interview Cates opened up about how it's "all hands on deck" for the event, which includes the X-Men and the island nation of Krakoa.
"You'll see the Avengers, the X-Men, Namor, the Fantastic Four, Black Cat, Doctor Strange. Pretty much everybody!" Cates told CBR "There's obviously a reason I've been threading the tapestry that I have been with books like Silver Surfer: Black and Thor. So, if you can think of someone they're there. No one is looking up at the sky, watching a billion dragons make landfall and going, 'Eh! I'll sit this one out.' It's a big deal from Latveria, to Wakanda, to New York, and beyond. This is a non-optional fight."
The "all hands on deck" approach wasn't limited to the fictional characters that populate Marvel's comics either as Cates made sure to pay tribute to all of his creative collaborators at the house of ideas that have also contributed to the event with its various tie-in stories.
"I also have to give (props) to Dan Slott, Jason Aaron, and Gerry Duggan who kind of pulled double duty with his work on the X-Titles and the other books he writes. Also to Chip Zdarsky, and really everyone at Marvel," he added. "About five years ago, I walked into my first Marvel summit ever as a freshman writer and when it was my turn to share my plans for Venom I sat there for an hour and outlined every single arc of the book. I went through to King in Black and beyond. Those plans have remained unchanged, and it was very ambitious and foolhardy of me at the time to assume that I would get that long of a run and assume that people would enjoy this crazy Knull story. But again I want to give as much praise as possible to my fellow creators and the editorial staff at Marvel. Because when it came time to plan for the King In Black we had a big summit and it was very much a Lord of the Rings, 'You have my axe' situation, where everyone jumped in and played."
The event kicks off with King in Black #1 starting on Wednesday, December 2. In addition to the flagship King in Black series later this year, the event will stretch out into exclusive mini-series tie ins and even stories within some of Marvel's monthly books. December brings not only King in Black proper but also one shots King in Black: Iron Man/Doctor Doom and King in Black: Immortal Hulk #1, mini-series King in Black: Namor, while also tying into Spider-Woman and Venom (naturally).
January sees the event continue with more King in Black, one shot King in Black: Black Knight, new mini-series King in Black: Planet of the Symbiotes, King in Black: Return of the Valkyries, King in Black: Gwenom vs Carnage, and King in Black: Thunderbolts, and tie-ins to ongoing titles like Daredevil, Deadpool, Guardians of the Galaxy, Savage Avengers, and S.W.O.R.D.