Here’s an entirely random question: What’s with the timing of Marvel’s new Avengers launches, in regards to the movie? Common wisdom – which, as we all know, may be a tautologous phrase – would suggest that you’d release a new #1 to coincide with the movie’s release (It’s what happened with Invincible Iron Man, The Mighty Thor and Captain America, I seem to remember…?), but when Marvel’s The Avengers hits theaters in May, Avengers Vs. X-Men will already be on #2 (Its third issue, remember; there’s #0 next month) and Avengers Assemble will similarly be at #2. Considering the risk of both launches selling out, that either means that Marvel will have an aggressive overprint/reprint policy in place for both titles – as they undoubtedly will – or whatever new audience might find itself in a store as a result of the movie won’t be able to find the two big entry points into the Marvel Comics Universe that are, in theory, aimed directly at them.
But thinking more about this, I wonder if the March and April (ish) launches of Assemble and AvX are actually timed to take advantage of the anticipation and advertising for the movie, rather than the movie itself; as awareness for MtA grows, so will – in theory – demand for the new books. Pushing AvX before the movie is actually released cuts down on the possibility of backlash based either on the amount of hype facing moviegoers or if the movie somehow, inexplicably, opens below box office expectations or turns out to disappoint fans (Not that I think either will happen, I should add). Maybe April is going to be as good as it gets for Avengers, in terms of excitement and awareness, and Marvel is being smarter than the average bear in placing AvX there. If nothing else, it’s better than the delayed Green Lantern prequels from DC last year, which saw the final release months after the movie had come, disappointed audiences, and disappeared from the big screen.