Marvel comics to read ahead of Phase 5 and 6 film and Disney+ releases including Secret Invasion and Ironheart
and live on Freeview channel 276
The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is officially in Phase 5, following the release of Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania fans are more excited than ever to see what will happen to their favourite characters, and what new big bad, Kang, is up to.
Phase 5 will see its second film released this year in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, this will be the thirty-second film of the historic Marvel Cinematic Universe which kicked off with Iron Man in 2008.
Many fans fall in love with their favourite superheroes on the big screen, but die hard followers know that these characters were around way before 2008. The success of the MCU has seen a huge surge in comic book purchasing, and that’s because the films are so tightly connected to them.
It’s not uncommon for one Marvel project to pull from multiple comic book runs as source material, and as fans grow desperate for more content they turn to them in hopes of finding out more information on what could happen.
As we enter the new phase, and see the build up to what could be cinema’s biggest crossover ever, many will wonder what source material will be used, not to mention it gives great incite into the newest characters coming such as Echo and the Young Avengers.
So, which comic books should you read ahead of Marvel’s latest releases? Here’s everything you need to know.
Where can you read these comics?
Fans across the world will be glad to know that they are likely to have a local comic book shop close by that they can go and support. Not to mention you’ll have exclusive access to people with the biggest knowledge on comic books, as well as the chance to find some of the rarest.
Additionally, Marvel launched its own digital subscription service which gives access to the full catalogue of their comic book business. The power of the universe in your hand, just don’t go all Thanos with it.
Secret Invasion is the next Disney+ series to hit the streaming platform from Marvel. The show seems to explore a similar plot to the 2008 comic series of the same name by Brian Michael Bendis and Leinil Francis Yu so it’s definitely worth a read. The comic focuses more on the Avengers dealing with the shape-shifting Skrull invasion, whereas the latest trailer shows Nick Fury very much going it alone.
However, Secret Invasion gives a great insight into the Skrulls and their plan.
Avengers: Secret Wars will be a direct sequel to Avengers: The Kang Dynasty as well as closing out the Multiverse Saga on the whole which kicked off with Disney+ miniseries WandaVision on January 15, 2021. With the way Phase 5 is going, from the introduction of the TVA it seems that the sixth Avengers film will draw from Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic Secret Wars series.
Secret Wars Omnibus collection 1-9 is a good place to start. The synopsis for the omnibus definitely confirms fans theories of where the MCU is headed and reads: “The Marvel multiverse is collapsing! Universes are colliding and realities are being wiped out! Earth 616 is destroyed as it merges with numerous other alternative Earths, creating... Battleworld! Who will survive?!! What will survive?!! Collecting Secret Wars #1-9 and material from Free Comic Book Day 2015: Secret Wars.”
Almost every recent Marvel project has involved a future Young Avenger or at least hinted to a team up. From Wanda’s children in WandaVision to Kate Bishop in Hawkeye, it is very much clear that a team up from the youngest generation of superheroes.
One of the best comics to start with to prepare yourself for this is the first collection of issues about the Young Avengers ever written by Allan Heinberg which is set after the events of Avengers: Disassembled.
The story follows Hawkeye, Stature, Patriot, and Hulkling, who are the first members of Marvel’s teen team, this comic shows their battle against a young Kang the Conqueror, who has already made his presence known in the MCU. Maybe Kang is the reason the Young Avengers form.
Echo made her MCU debut in the Hawkeye Disney+ series portrayed by Alaqua Cox, and quickly became a fan–favourite. Echo has her own TV show for Disney+ coming in Autumn 2023, and will also play a part in Daredevil: Reborn which is the reboot of the formerly Netflix series.
Those hoping to learn more about Maya Lopez should read Daredevil #9-#17 by David Mack Glenn Herdling, and Gregg Shigiel.
Guardians of The Galaxy
The final instalment of the iconic Guardians of The Galaxy trilogy is next on Marvel’s list of releases, coming out on May 3, 2023. From the looks of the trailer this film is going to be an emotional rollercoaster (yes we mean that scene of Peter screaming), from finally being introduced to Adam Warlock to saying goodbye to Drax as actor Dave Bautista confirmed he would not return to the character.
To get some insight into the upcoming film check out 1982’s Incredible Hulk #271 by Bill Mantlo and Sal Buscema. This issue gives you the origin of everyone’s favourite trash panda Rocket, which is heavily hinted at in the trailers for the upcoming movie.
You might think your best bet is to read the series of the same name, which is a great run so definitely give that a read. But currently there doesn’t seem to be much of a connection between them and the film.
In 2019, Clint McElroy and Ig Guara worked together on Marvel Team-Up and in issues 4-6 the mentor relationship between Carol Danvers and Kamala Khan is explored. This dynamic will no doubt be important to Brie Larson and Iman Vellani’s portrayal of the characters.
RiRi Williams made her MCU debut in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and her Disney+ series is very much on the way. Fans who can’t wait to find out more about the character will be pleased to know there is already a great 12-issue entitled Ironheart by Eve Ewing and Kevin Libranda.
The series was released in 2018 and will no doubt be one of the key source materials for the TV series picking up right after Riri has begun her role as Ironheart and is developing her superhero identity.