At last month’s D23 Expo, Marvel debuted a teaser for Incoming!, a December-shipping book that “will shape the future of Marvel Comics in 2020 and beyond:”
Today at #D23Expo, Marvel Comics Editor-in-chief @cbcebulski and Executive Editor @TomBrevoort unveiled "INCOMING," the comic that will shape the future of Marvel Comics in 2020 and beyond. https://t.co/z6dSUlLwGp #MarvelComics pic.twitter.com/A2gddERFT7
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) August 25, 2019
The teaser image included the silhouette of an armor-wearing, sword-wielding character, set against a cosmic background with a pair of menacing eyes looking on. Many fans on social media have speculated that the silhouetted character is Hulkling, a former Young Avenger who happens to be half-Kree and half-Skrull. Placing that character at the center of a cosmic Marvel story makes a lot of sense.
Today Marvel added to the mystery with the release of yet another teaser image for the upcoming Incoming:
This one features an image by an unidentified artist of The Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Valkyrie, Captain Marvel, and Black Panther gathered around a table in what appears to be a morgue. The table holds a body with a sheet over it. A pair of caucasian-looking feet stick out from under the sheet. The image is framed as a jigsaw puzzle piece, with other pieces of the puzzle appearing to be made from the previous teaser image. The teaser also reveals the release date for Incoming! as December 26th, 2019. Happy Boxing Day!
The obvious questions are: who’s on that table, and how does this image relate to the previous one? What does a murder mystery have to do with what otherwise looks to be a cosmic-level storyline?
The answers to the first question are informed by the answers to the second question. There are a few candidates who jump to mind. The first is Marvel Boy, aka Noh-Varr, last seen in the too-short-lived West Coast Avengers series. A member of the Kree race, Noh-Varr has at various times rebelled against his upbringing and worked to rebuild the Kree empire (and also declared war on Earth, but he seems to have come around from that). Noh-Varr is also a former Young Avengers teammate of Hulkling.
The other potential victim is much more personal for Hulkling. Billy Kaplan, aka Wiccan, is another former Young Avenger, and also the long-time boyfriend of Hulkling. Wiccan is slated to appear as part of the upcoming Strikeforce series, which features a team taking on the missions purportedly too EXTREME for the rest of the Marvel U. To be honest, Billy has always felt like an odd fit for that book—could he have been added to the line-up to remind more people who he is before he’s killed off? And if that’s the case, just how pissed will fans be that Marvel’s killed off half of what’s arguably their most prominent queer couple? Incoming indeed.
Surely there will be more pieces of the puzzle revealed in the coming weeks. Keep an eye out for those, and look for Marvel’s Incoming! in December.