"Let's just say there's a last-page reveal that's probably gonna break the Internet."
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That's how Marvel's Axel Alonso describes "Legacy," a new initiative that will take things back to the comic book company's iconic history, all while keeping an eye on the future.
It all begins this fall with "Marvel Legacy No. 1," an over-sized, one-shot special that's 50 pages in all. It's written by Jason Aaron with art by Esad Ribic and features a special, 4-panel, fold-out cover by Marvel Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada.
Alonso, Marvel's editor-in-chief, told ABC News that this is a book that is going to send shockwaves throughout the comic book industry.
"That story functions as a preview of what's to come. It's chocked full of twists, surprises, Easter eggs, and let's just say, a last-page reveal that’s probably gonna break the internet," he said. "It's a big moment, something we continually get asked about. We are going to answer that question."
Easter eggs -- hidden nods to longtime fans -- are at the core of what "Legacy" is attempting to do, Alonso said. The content will be exciting for new fans, but will also pay off in a different way for hardcore fans of the Marvel Universe.
"With 'Legacy,' we want to tell stories that are accessible to all, but remind readers of Marvel’s rich history,” he said. “To drive that point home, a number of our titles will return to their original series numbering, and our stories will invoke that history, reminding readers of connections between characters they may have forgotten about, and ushering in the return of some big characters who’ve been missed. Above all else, we want to inject our comics with a massive dose of fun."
He continued, "I think 'Legacy' will also prove that absence does indeed make the heart grow fonder."
"Legacy" will also finally answer some of fans' questions about their beloved characters, including if the universe is big enough for Miles Morales and Peter Parker to both be Spider-Man. The same will be answered about whether Riri Williams and Tony Stark can both be Iron Man.
The key here though, Alonso said, is that there are no old characters or new characters, there are just Marvel superheroes.
"Legacy" will follow another initiative, "Secret Empire," where the heroes finally get caught up to speed on what readers have known for months -- that Captain America is actually a Hydra agent. Alonso said that series will be a rallying cry and unifying factor for the heroes before we get to "Legacy."
"None of 'Legacy' hinges on the death of a major character at all," he added. "A lot of this may hinge on some resurrections. If there ever were a time to bring back characters, it would be during the 'Legacy' era."
The series will span the entire universe and touch on the "glory days" of characters like Odinson, Squirrel Girl, Spider-Man, the Avengers, America Chavez, Iron Man, Moon Knight, the Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain Marvel, Luke Cage, the X-Men and many others.
The aesthetic of "Legacy" will be a trip for longtime fans as well, with little vestiges from the past like the cover value stamp and corner box art that Marvel used years ago.
"As a kid, I remember ruining some of my comics by cutting out the value stamp," Alonso admitted. "I had 'Incredible Hulk' No. 181 and I cut the value stamp out, what was I thinking?!"
That issue was the very first full appearance of Wolverine in 1974.
"We are going to remind generations about that history," Alonso promised.
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