Marvel Comics has released more details on Free Comic Book Day: Avengers/X-Men #1, one of the publisher's three titles available on FCBD this spring. Not only will Avengers/X-Men #1 act as a lead-in to the X-Men's second annual Hellfire Gala, but readers will also witness the introduction of a brand-new Marvel hero. The FCBD issue sets the stage for Judgment Day, a summer crossover event featuring the Avengers, X-Men, and Eternals. Eternals and Immortal X-Men writer Kieron Gillen and artist Valerio Schiti are the creative team on Judgment Day, with Gillen also providing a story in Avengers/X-Men #1.
Writer Gerry Duggan and artist Matteo Lolli are teaming for an X-Men story in the FCBD title, which leads into the Hellfire Gala one-shot. Duggan previously revealed that instead of this year's Hellfire Gala serving as an X-Men crossover event, it will instead be told in a standalone issue. "#XMenVote ends soon. You'll see more of ALL the candidates whether they win or not. We let you in on the vote b/c it's fun. Please go easy on each other. It's a cruel world, be kind, and read the X-Men Hellfire Gala one shot to learn who won," Duggan wrote on Twitter as the polls closed for voting on the next member of the X-Men. Fans were able to vote on the last X-Men member ahead of last year's Hellfire Gala, with Polaris winning the vote. This year, fans had the opportunity to vote for Armor, Avalanche, Bling!, Firestar, Gentle, Gorgon, Micromax, Penance, Siryn, and Surge.
Avengers/X-Men #1 also sees the debut of a new hero named Bloodline. Writer Danny Lore and artist Karen Darboe will tell Bloodline's introductory story, though no information was given on whether Bloodline will be aligned with the Avengers, X-Men, or neither. Its possible Bloodline could have a connection to the Eternals, since Judgment Day puts all three factions at war with each other.
"The X-Men have achieved immortality and mutants have taken their place as the dominant species on the planet. The Eternals have discovered long hidden knowledge about their species, including a devastating truth about mutantkind. The Avengers have come into direct conflict with the Celestials and are currently using a fallen Celestial as their base of operations, slowly unlocking its secrets…," Gillen said earlier today regarding Judgment Day. "When the Eternals brazenly target the mutant nation of Krakoa, the Avengers try desperately to de-escalate a potentially apocalyptic war. But this is no simple conflict. The Eternals' purpose cannot be denied and mutantkind's future will not be threatened. And after the opening battles, new players and revelations for both sides will emerge as the inhabitants of the Marvel Universe are JUDGED by the greatest power they've ever come into contact with."
He added: "I looked at everything in Eternals and Immortal X-Men and everything else all the X and Avengers writers have done and thought... yeah, this is an event. In fact, an event is the only way to do justice to this. The Beach Boys' Brian Wilson described the music he was reaching for as Teenage Symphonies to God. I think that's what the best Marvel Events aspire to be, and it's what we're aspiring to here. I want the scale. I want the heartbreak . I want a book that wears its heart on its sleeve even as it puts a fist in your face. I want something Wagnerian in its volume as emotional as God Only Knows."
Will you be picking up Free Comic Book Day: Avengers/X-Men #1 for its Hellfire Gala and Bloodline stories? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!
FREE COMIC BOOK DAY: AVENGERS/X-MEN #1
Written by KIERON GILLEN, GERRY DUGGAN & DANNY LORE
Art by DUSTIN WEAVER, MATTEO LOLLI & KAREN DARBOE
Cover by VALERIO SCHITI
Variant Cover[1:1000] by PEACH MOMOKO