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X-Men Writer Responds To ‚Too Many X-Comics‘ Criticism -BB

Jonathan Hickman, the man responsible for the current X-Men relaunch, has spoken up to defend the number of comics being published. The X-Men relaunch has proven to be a tremendous success, translating into strong sales. October 2019 delivered the best month in three years for the Direct Market, with Hickman’s X-MenPowers of X, and House of X books all driving sales. The top 10 best-selling comics of 2019 included three X-books.

And yet, Marvel Comics appear to be sabotaging their own success story. The X-books are already double- or triple-shipping each week; one week in December saw no less than five issues release on the very same day. This effectively forces the different X-books into a fairly brutal „Survival of the Fittest,“ with readers forced to choose which titles to follow.

Related: Wolverine’s Biggest X-MEN Reboot Mystery Has Been Solved

Jonathan Hickman, the man behind the relaunch, has taken to Twitter to defend the current strategy. „The goal of the X-Office is to build a line where every kind of X-fan can have a book they like,“ he explained. „The expectation was never that you have to buy ‚all the books‘ to follow along. It never will be. Yes, we’ve built a cohesive line where everything is interconnected, and yes, we will do X-crossovers and X-tie-ins, but those are the exception and not the rule.“ In Hickman’s view, every reader should „buy what you like. Don’t buy what you don’t like.

On the face of it, Hickman has a persuasive argument. What’s more, his position is reinforced by the fact that the X-Men line has frequently been a lot larger than it is at present. In reality, however, it’s impossible for a reader to know which books they’re going to enjoy if they don’t pick up the first couple of issues of every title. What’s more, Hickman seems to be suggesting that every X-title has a clearly defined target audience, but it’s not easy to identify just how that works. That idea also carries some unpleasant implications, given the recent announcement of an X-Factor title that’s unusually diverse; it feels as though that’s the book for readers who care about diversity, potentially allowing the rest of the line to ignore it.

Meanwhile, Hickman seems to not entirely understand just why X-Men readers are particularly perplexed by the size of the current range. The truth is that readers are still trying to understand the new status quo, and any issue could introduce a new element or adapt it in a new way. Excalibur is rewriting the history of the mutant race; Fallen Angels has introduced a post-human force who, in most timelines, has ultimately rendered both mutants and humans extinct; Marauders has revealed the X-Men are expanding to more new mutant nations as a result of population growth. With the X-books now so closely interwoven, any one of these plots feels significant, and could have major repercussions in the future. It really isn’t quite so easy as Hickman implies.

Source: Twitter

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