When Marvel started dropping teasers for their next major crossover event, Secret Empire, not long ago, it quickly became apparent that Steve Rogers would somehow be central to the plot. After all, the current shield he wields was being used in the promo images.
Now, the House of Ideas is ready to pull back the curtain and formally announce the event series set to be written by, not surprisingly, Nick Spencer, who currently pens the ongoing Captain America: Steve Rogers. Not only that, but fan favorite artist Steve McNiven is slated to lend his distinctive pencils to the project. As of now, 9 issues are scheduled to encompass the ambitious story arc.
As many of you are likely aware, Rogers had his history rewritten when Kobik, a living Cosmic Cube, managed to make him an agent of Hydra during the resurrection process. Needless to say, this creative decision caused an uproar among fans, but Marvel has stood firmly behind Spencer in the time since.
Furthermore, the moment many have been waiting for will soon arrive when Rogers’ true nature is revealed for all the Marvel Universe to see, something the publisher’s Senior Vice President, Tom Brevoort, discussed with ABC News:
“Steve has been kind of lining his dominoes up around the Marvel Universe to be able to make his move and bring about a Hydra revolution, a takeover. At the point of ‘Secret Empire,’ they are ready to go. That’s the moment we hit as we go in.
“His plans and Hydra’s plans will have begun to unfurl. We are done with the covert portion, the buildup portion of the program, ‘Secret Empire’ is the pyrotechnics, the big Michael Bay blockbuster, huge colossal struggles and battles across the Marvel Universe, with all of our key characters and players taking on a big role.”
With S.H.I.E.L.D., Hydra and a Chitauri army backing Rogers, it comes as no surprise that as many superheroes as possible will be joining forces, hence the “United We Stand” banner. Editor-in-chief Axel Alonso had this to say regarding the matter:
“We saw this as the rallying cry, where we could have everyone — Avengers, Guardians, Defenders, X-Men, Spider-Man, Deadpool — all rally against this thing and unify the universe into the future.”
Secret Empire #0 is scheduled to arrive in comic shops this April, with issue #1 following in May.