GENERATIONS – Coming Summer 2017

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Yes but Thunderstrike was Thor for a time. War Machine was Iron Man for a time. USAgent was Captain America for a time. It was only when Marvel brought back the originals were their codenames changed!

Something to think about with these new legacy heroes.

Also there was Spider-Man/Venom, Fantastic Four/Fantastic Force, Avengers/Avengers West Coast/Force Works, Ghost Rider/Spirits of Vengeance, etc. Not to mention numerous X-teams!

I think what it comes down to is marketing.  It's easier and safer to introduce a new character with an old name instead of introducing a completely new character and a new name.  Saves a lot of strain on the creativity part of creation and if it doesn't work just junk the new character -maybe with a spectacular death to spur the original to come back- and move on.

More than marketing, there's the matter of trademark protection--if Mar-Vell isn't selling enough to justify publishing him, toss him out and whip up another character to carry the "Captain Marvel' name and then it's just "rinse, lather, repeat" until they find one that sticks.  That said, I think there's also the matter of creators being unwilling to actually create new characters that will then be owned for all time by whichever corporation publishes them first (the characters, not the creators!), so we keep getting ever so slightly new versions of characters that have been around foe decades instead of, well, much of anything actually new.



Dave Elyea said:

More than marketing, there's the matter of trademark protection--if Mar-Vell isn't selling enough to justify publishing him, toss him out and whip up another character to carry the "Captain Marvel' name and then it's just "rinse, lather, repeat" until they find one that sticks.  That said, I think there's also the matter of creators being unwilling to actually create new characters that will then be owned for all time by whichever corporation publishes them first (the characters, not the creators!), so we keep getting ever so slightly new versions of characters that have been around foe decades instead of, well, much of anything actually new.


Right. Comic publishers own any new legacy characters outright and don't have to worry about paying royalties to the creators down the line. They are probably discouraging writers from creating anything new that might have a gray area in terms of ownership.

That creators are reluctant to create new intellectual property in work-for-hire situations is well documented. Throw in Robert Kirkman's huge success with The Walking Dead (which would not have made him rich had he done it at Marvel or DC) and the explosion of new titles by A-list creators at Image and indie publishers is the result.

Dave Elyea said:

That said, I think there's also the matter of creators being unwilling to actually create new characters that will then be owned for all time by whichever corporation publishes them first (the characters, not the creators)

I’m sure they would have tried to own the creators too if it wasn’t unconstitutional.

Seriously, this is why the creative juices are mostly going to creator-owned projects published by other companies. Some creators are getting rich instead of making the Big Two richer.

As it should be. As the income gap demonstrates, the American economic system is designed to hoover money up to the highest reaches, where the labor of those at "the bottom" -- about 90 percent of us -- creates the wealth, but we don't share in it. If creators can game that system, more power to them.

Well that would explain why there are so many super heroes with the same name.  No wonder marvel heroes  fight each other most of the time, the super villains must be too confused about who to actually attack.  Maybe with this latest marvel hero/hero battle (I mean the one after inhumans versus mutants -they really must be running out of groups to set against each other on flimsy excuses) some of the heroes with the same names will die and the super villains will know who to attack again.

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