We’re already well acquainted with the Ultimate Marvel Universe here and we’re getting more intimate with good ol’ 616 every day, but I had to ask over at the CBR Forums to see if there were any Alternate Marvel Universes (that saw separate publication) that I’d missed.
CBR Forum user Plawsky was kind enough to list a bunch of them for me. Based on his list, I’ve started laying out an attack plan for how all these books will be worked into this website.
Definitely a head scratchier. There are similar things going on the DC list though – the worst offenders are the DC animated books, though there were a ton of one shot Elseworlds. The Wildstorm Universe, though it had some crossovers, is basically a separate list.
What I did is basically include them by release date with a kind of “Elseworlds” interlude at the end of each year. That way, if in the next year a title traveled to one of those universes, you would be familiar with it. Likewise, if the Elseworlds referenced recent events, you would read it after those events.
I think I can do the same with a bunch of this Marvel stuff – The What If? style of book is basically an elseworlds type thing, and many of them seem to reference very recent events (like what if civil war, etc.)
I’m pretty limited to doing ONE list, at least, in a straight forward 1. 2. 3. type order (no branching, technically) because the other lists would all be dynamically generated from that one. But there’s no reason that a book couldn’t have all kinds of tags.
Squadron Supreme/Supreme Power: These I may include by release date (maybe bunched up to read in a row instead of by exact date), but will probably give them a tag that will generate a list like the DC Animated Universe
Marvel Zombies: I think there are four trades including the army of darkness crossover? I may just include these on the ultimate marvel list, since they’re an offshoot, right? Maybe on the main list as well though, jumbled together as an extended “What If?”
Marvel 1602: This one I’ve read. I think it can be read any time after the release of the first 1602, so I’ll just put the three volumes there. You should be familiar enough with the characters by that point, but it doesn’t influence future continuity (or universe crossovers) as far as I know, so it will just tagged as “What If?” as well.
MC2 (M2?): This one I know a bit about (After picking up a spider-girl trade and being totally confused once). Basically it’s a future where you can read about the kids of current marvel heroes. Spider Girl is parker’s kid, and so on. I think these could be jumbled up and placed by release date – fun to read but not essential to continuity. They have their own continuity, but all the titles except for Spider-Girl were canceled pretty quick, so I’m not worried about it.
X-Men/Factor Forever: I’ll probably place these in at the time of release – short alternate universes can probably be treated as “What If?” stories. Is this related to Avengers Forever? There is also that whole Age of Apocalypse arc, but that’s in continuity right so… there are a LOT of marvel stories that concern alternate universes and futures, actually, hah.
New Universe: Since there’s so little, it can be placed in at the date like the others.
Marvel 2099: I’d like to jumble these together around their release date. I was really into the floppies as a kid for some reason and I think though they take place in “the future” they work best at the time they were written.
Amalgam Universe: This is kind of a crossover so will be treated the same way it worked in the DC unvierse
Marvel Mangaverse: Again, treating it a lot like DC Animated – maybe in a couple of Mangaverse interludes if there is a lot of it.
Marvel Noir: Will probably put these in together a lot like the DC books that were based on old films (Metropolis, Nosferatu)
Marvel Adventures: Since they’re not in continuity with each other, may bulk them together by the ones they ARE linked to.. and then date? Not sure if there is enough to warrant a separate universe list, especially if they don’t even interact.
There will probably be a 616 list that includes just 616 titles, with any crossover, OOC, What If?, or Alternate Universe stuff taken out, but a master list with everything in as well.
So.. Feels good to have a game plan. Will change, I’m sure, as I get more and more books ready. Any feedback? Any significant publications that we’ve missed?