Robot 6

Marvel cancels Destroyers miniseries by Van Lente and Hotz

Destroyers teaser

Marvel has canceled Destroyers, a planned five-issue miniseries starring She-Hulk, The Thing, the Beast, Devil Dinosaur and other “monstrous” heroes. Announced in August at FanExpo Canada, along with the upgrade of Alpha Flight to an ongoing series, the project was set to debut in February from writer Fred Van Lente and artist Kyle Hotz.

Word of the cancellation surfaced this morning on Twitter, where Van Lente revealed “that series got the axe weeks ago.”

“There was no announcement,” he continued, in response to a follower’s question. “The book hadn’t been solicited yet, and just wouldn’t have. … The biggest bummer about Destroyers was Kyle Hotz had #1-2 pencilled, and it looked grrrrreat. Ah, well. That’s showbiz for you.”

The news follows the cancellations of Marvel titles Alpha Flight (co-written by Van Lente), Iron Man 2.0, All-Winners Squad and, just last week, Victor Von Doom, axed before its debut.

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63 Comments

Hmmm. I wonder what’s going on at Marvel, considering the recent layoffs and string of abrupt cancellations. Sounds a lot like they are trying to trim themselves down to a more sustainable size.

Yep, sure sounds like Marvel is trying to trim the fat, and one cannot help but wonder if that’s in reaction to DC suddenly taking the #1 spot from them. It’s a shame this is one of the books they cut, though: I’d have actually read it, and I haven’t read a Marvel book in years.

@Mike

You would probably be one the 100 other people who would’ve read it.

Bummer! I was excited to check this one out when it hit the stands.

I’ll never understand Marvel.

For years they’ve flooded the market with titles (a lot of which don’t sell) so they can push out competitors.

Now DC is doing the same and they’re panicking.

DC only has 52 ongoings in the DCU, still less than marvel even with the cancellations

yeah marvels trimming the fat so they can add another 5 avengers titles and another 7 event tie-ins and 1-shots.

To be honest, if DC’s sudden success causes Marvel to focus more on quality than quantity and price points, then it’s all for the better.

In short: they need to rethink their product a bit.

Fact: this is the first time I am reading 100% non-Marvel. Which is a pity, because I actually like their properties overall more than their competitors.

I hope DC will seize the moment and grab Fred Van Lente. He’ll be great on JLI. They can send Krul to Marvel in exchange.

Actually, Marvel has less ongoings than DC. However they always have more minis and tend to double-ship out the wazoo. So they always have more titles on the stands.

I guess Marvel is tired of taking chances on new mini’s and would rather keep doing more spinoff’s of already successful franchises…

So, of the two series Marvel announced at Fan Expo Canada, both are now cancelled. Did they just rush those announcements so they’d have something new to show at the con?

“To be honest, if DC’s sudden success causes Marvel to focus more on quality than quantity and price points, then it’s all for the better.”

I really don’t see how cancelling books of Spencer and Van Lante as opposed to, say, of Bendis’ will improve quality of their line.

I had already forgotten about this series until this announcement.

So probably just as well.

DC’s success hasn’t been sustained long enough to dramatically effect the way Marvel does business, so this isn’t due to DC’s current success. Day and Date was the boldest move DC’s made that would effect the way Marvel does business and Marvel did the same quickly. Furthermore, all the books haven’t been cancelled based completely on sales. Thunderbolts and Alpha Flight had similar numbers. Marvel isn’t a failing company and a lot of these tensions within the company were occurring before DC’s relaunch. Some of the layoffs/firings even occurred before September. The cause is clearly Marvel’s attempt to pad the bottom line to keep Disney from coming down on them.

Folks, it’s simple. Perlmutter is slashing budgets to make Marvel look better to Disney so they don’t give him the heave ho. These things are the results.

This is one of those cases where they should simply let the creative team finish it and send it to the vault.

I’ve been seriously cutting back my Marvel titles, but I would have bought this as a paperback.

Release them as trades.

Also, DC’s current ‘success’ was because of a sales gimmick. They destroyed their whole line and legacy for a cheap gimmick. Once the dust settles we’ll know if it was a true success or not. Marvel has nothing to worry about

I like Van Lente and most of the characters in this book, but this is the kind of title I’d only buy once the trade paperbacks hit the remainder bins. I’m more surprised it got a green light in the first place than I am about it getting canned. Same goes for Spencer’s Victor Von Doom story, really. It seems to fit with the teen-centric books that Marvel releases in digest format.

Michael M Jones

November 7, 2011 at 9:34 am

I would have bought the HELL out of this series and enjoyed it so much.
I also had Victor Von Doom on pre-order.
I was also reading and enjoying All-Winners Squad, Alpha Flight, and Iron Man 2.0.

Why does Marvel hate my money? Why do they hate fun? :(
Sigh.

Agreed that Marvel should think about possibly trying to just publish these as OGNs. Sure they don’t get to double-dip but they at least get a way of testing the OGN format for the less than A-List properties.

Skott sez…
“Release them as trades.”

I’d suggest releasing them as “digital-only exclusives”.
If the downloads sell, announce a trade pb and see how it goes…

@ Atomic Kommie Comics

Brilliant idea. I forgot the possibility of digital exclusives, which is something neither Marvel or DC seems to really be trying to push.

Imagine the projects that haven’t been announced that are probably getting rejected and cancelled…

With young Doom, Destroyers and Alpha Flight cancelled, Marvel should try lumping them all together in a weekly anthology floppy printed on cheap newsprint paper.

I wish people would give up on the dream of modern comics on cheap newsprint. That would save Marvel about 5-10% of the cost of production at best. Most of the costs of new material are on the creative and administrative ends, not printing.

What the hell. :( Jen Walters leads a cursed life.

@ Rich,

That’s not really true.

(A) Printing/reproduction costs are not inconsiderable. Paper is expensive. And while printing on newsprint would be less expensive than quality paper, it still wouldn’t make it cheap enough to make a low selling book financially viable.

(B) The physical reproduction and distribution of physical product is also a major cost, one that wouldn’t be significantly eased by using relatively cheaper paper.

Too bad, I’m always drawn to the titles that have a weird premise. Seeing Devil Dinosaur on the cover would have made me take a look. I feel like Marvel is playing it too safe all of a sudden. I don’t really want another Spider-man or Avengers title.

“I forgot the possibility of digital exclusives, which is something neither Marvel or DC seems to really be trying to push.”

Good. I’m one of the people who would only get it once it was actually printed. If it starts out exclusively digital but will definitely make it to print, that’s great, but I don’t want digital exclusives which may never see print.

It is very strange that they are axing all of these series before they even start or with Alpha Flight cancelling the ongoing. There are so many books to follow in the Marvel Universe. 5 or 6 Avengers titles, 9-10 X-Men titles. It’s crazy to try to keep up with all of these series that a lot of us love. I think I’d rather have one series from each title like Uncanny X-Men, Avengers, Fantastic Four, Amazing Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, etc. The main books are the ones I’m sure most of us read anyway. I know there are so many characters to keep up with, but think about how Chris Claremont handled all the different and diverse X-Characters during his run in Uncanny. Lol. Okay this is wishful thinking on my part I guess, but I’d rather follow one title of each of these characters rather than 20-50 titles lol. Especially with prices of comics being higher now. If they can bring out each main series at leas twice a month, just think how much easier and cheaper buying Marvel’s titles would be.

I am not sure about this. A. Only Real She-Hulk seems to be getting shaft by this be canceled. But also B. She was getting shaft anyway because for the fact that again grouped with monsters again and even tease that she might savage again. So maybe not a bad thing isn’t getting published. Sad that other then FF red wanna be She-Hulk will be appearing more. Which is STUPID!

Marvel hopefully…… are finally getting real. We are in the middle of a global recession and many of us are thinking about putting food on the table & keeping a roof above our heads.
The last thing on minds is going out & buying rubbish & pointless comics.
I hope they would end the contract of Bendis because he is pointless at the moment, however….. i see he’s positioned himself well with the Avengers. This man thinks he is bigger than Marvel….. he reminds me of the big brother contestants, (fame hungry) go and create your own characters to destroy & leave Marvel alone.

“Marvel hopefully…… are finally getting real. We are in the middle of a global recession and many of us are thinking about putting food on the table & keeping a roof above our heads.
The last thing on minds is going out & buying rubbish & pointless comics.”

right. i’m concentrating hard on only buying comics that will work hard and help pay the bills.

sounds like Disney is taking a more active role in seeing how they can make the billions they paid for marvel by doing some cost cutting. and now some comics. pity for was looking forward to see how thing she hulk and beast work as a team.

@ Kalorama

Oddly, you said my comment wasn’t true but I believe we made the exact same point. I never said paper is inexpensive, just that even using cheaper paper doesn’t result in a large drop in the overall costs of producing comic books–at least for Marvel and DC with their high page rates, large staffs,etc. Although their large print runs surely make the per-unit cost a lot less than for smaller publishing efforts.

I was actually going to buy that. What Marvel needs to do is stop doing so many miniseries and spin offs and assorted stuff that revolve around Avengers and X-Men or at least make them less bound to the main titles. It seems to me like lazy work on their part. Rather than try to push a new book or a new character or a character that isn’t that well known they just flood the market with umpteen numbers of Avengers books, which honestly is why I don’t try to read Avengers or Batman before the New 52. Comics shouldn’t be so interconnected they scare away potential readers. The price point doesn’t help either … instead of Avenging Spiderman why didn’t Marvel put Jo Mad on a book like Runaways or something like Alpha Flight or something. Try keeping a book afloat for more than ten minutes or if you’re not why not go the magazine approach and just renumber every year. They renumber their books every couple of years, why not just do it every year. Then every new #1 would boost sales … at least until people realized they had ten #1′s from the last ten years. Gimmicks won’t save comics, but neither will having Mr. Bendis write every Marvel book. Its cool that X-Men and Avengers are their ultimate books but why do all the spin offs seem to be required reading? I know you want to sell a lot of books but it makes more sense to sell 10 books to 50 different people than to sell 50 books to the same 10 Marvel hardcore fans.

Marvel doesn’t seem like a whole lot of fun these days.

DC should grab Van Lente. He’s a great writer but this is his third one in this year that have gotten canned. Wouldn’t mind seeing him in JLI or maybe Mister Terrific.

Despite the sales, Marvel should at least make an effort to finish the All Winners series.

Otherwise this sets a bad precedence, where readers may be reluctant to buy into a mini or maxi series because of the possibility of cancellation before being finished.

Given how well Mystery Men and the Marvel Project sold, and that The Twelve is finally being given a conclusion, surely there is a market for All Winners.

Anyone who doesn’t see the lost jobs and the series canceled BEFORE they even get published as a panic button move is in serious denial. Joey Q very publicly supported the New 52 when he was able to dismiss the move with a doubting chuckle. For the first time in a long while, DC is leading the pack, and Marvel desperately wants its lead dog perspective returned ASAP.

Since Marvel is trimming the fat what are the odds of scaling back the number of X and Avengers titles and the tons of tie-in minis for each event. I realize those are probably the big sellers so it is unlikely to happen but it would be nice to see a push for other properties and a decrease in the number of “must have” titles would, hopefully, free up cash for people to try out other stuff.

I bet that J. Scott Campbell Spider-man book is still on, though. :)

I think too compete Marvel will need to do something big. Unfortnantly, every book is a crossover it seems. Even the regular books and not being a Bendis fan, I don’t want to read another book about Luke Cage standing around with his arms crossed. Marvel needs to get it’s head on straight in regards to their writing as well as what books they put out. Spider-manis an unknown character to me. HE became so sometime after the first renumbering and continued during the magical Spider-stories and then… well, that was the worst thing I’d ever seen. Don’t need to go into it.

Is Cap the same Cap from Civil War? Stuff like that. That book is way over-rated.

I take no joy in initiating a tweet news about a mini-series I eagerly anticapted, getting cancelled and then making it to the comics press. :(

I wanted to buy this comic.

Come on, Marvel!

:-P

T_T

I’m really disappointed at this. Jen Walters is one of my favorite characters and I really don’t understand the Betty Banner/Red She Hulk push at the expense of a fantastic and very under used character. For a character with the history Jen has to be reduced to an after thought is a sad thing.

The One and Only

November 7, 2011 at 4:49 pm

First ALPHA FLIGHT gets shitcanned, now this. I was really looking foreward to this mini. Marvel’s mors monstrous heroes battling Kro, the Deviants, classic Marvel Monsters, and an unknown threat that’s coming back after taking out the dinsaurs.
Plus written by Fred Van Lente and the underrated art of Kyle Hotz. It sounded like my cup of tea. I guess Marvel did me a favor saving me a few bucks.

Marvel cancels a couple of niche titles and everyone acts like its a drastic line cutback.

I think Marvel is doing things differently (I can’t think the last time I saw a launch title of theirs advertised on the cbr homepage) but I don’t think they are all that scared. Their sales haven’t changed much, just their market share. They’re making more-or-less what they did a couple of months ago, its just that now DC is making much more.

And not to turn this into a Marvel/DC thing, but you know if Marvel relaunched the whole line, they’d do even better than DC.

I generally buy few if any Marvel comics, being unable to build up any interest in what little life they allow the creators to bring to the characters, but I had been planning on giving this one a shot. While some of the other cancellations don’t strike me as important, this and the Doom mini, both which gave us something a bit different than the usual, show me that we are likely just about to be doused with a bucketload of more Avengers and X-men related comics at the expense of trying anything new.
In response to Ian’s comment that Marvel would do a better reboot than DC did, while I’m not thrilled with the character takes in much of the 52, DC did indeed pull off a monumental project. Marvel, even if it wanted to, doesn’t have the editorial, production, or publicicity resources anymore to pull it off. Pearlman’s draconian way of running Marvel and the mood that he fosters makes it near impossible to produce anything on that scale, and even if editorial and production could make it happen, the higher-ups would never allow for the publicity budget called for. Having visited the Marvel offices in the past and again recently, seeing what once was (which wasn’t great but wasn’t horrible) and what is now, the horrible, cramped conditions under which editorial must work makes everyone unhappy and, so, less creative.

Way to go Marvel – the one book of yours that I was considering buying. I’m not surprised at all – gotta make room for more X-books…

It’s a shame, and I agree with the poster who suggested FVL head on over to DC. Would love to see him take over the reins on a JLI, or just about anything.

I wish Marvel would do something similar and cancel Avenging Spider-Man before it gets released. I don’t think the market is going to support it, ASM and Venom and Scarlet Spider, and I would much rather read those latter two than a Spider-Man team-up book. It’s not going to happen, so I just have to hope Scarlet Spider is worth reading and sticks around a while.

Marvel’s cutting back? Not counting Ultimate titles.
9 Avengers titles solicited for January, not counting an annual.
5 Spider books.
18 X books.
Meanwhile they are busy cutting back on ‘marginal’ books. I can remember when the last She-Hulk got canceled. They said it was a marginal book but a few books with slower sales are still going because they carry the tie-in with one of the above. Right now out of 15 books or so I get a month only 1 is Marvel. It was 3 six months ago and roughly half a few years ago.

Goodness! A She-Hulk series gets cancelled before it even started.

You’re right @XK

Maybe she should just retire, or join X-Factor..

I actually would have picked up at least the first issue of this. I think it looks like a lot of fun.

Disappointing that with all the other real crap Marvel’s putting out, something fun like this gets canned. Lovely.

And, like David K, I too would have bought this. Considering how little I’m currently buying from the House of Mouse, I’m actually not that surprised.

I don’t know if this was the right decision on Marvel’s part. I think one of the reasons why DC is really taking the lead in their new comics is because alot of their comics feature something Marvel does not : simplicity. People have already complained about all the crazy crossover-mega-event-tie-ins. Sometimes people just want to see their favorite character explored a bit more or a slam bang action book. SOoooo Marvel cancels these types of books and then presses into another slew of events (Point One? Phoenix saga 2012? HAMMMER war?)

Dangit, I love giant monsters, and I would’ve loved this if it had come out. Somebody PLEASE vote Ike Perlmutter out.

See you in six months, Destroyers!

Boooo.

One of the things I’ve learned in the past four years is that you don’t screw with Fred Van Lente’s work.

Given that two numbers of Destroyers were ready, i would like to propose a petition to push the Marvel to retrace its steps and allow the exit of this splendid miniseries, which boasts three valid artists to credits (Fred Van Lente, Kyle Hotz, Carlo Pagulayan); it may announce plans for cancelling them point blank, but only together we can change things

“And not to turn this into a Marvel/DC thing, but you know if Marvel relaunched the whole line, they’d do even better than DC.”

Translation: I’m not saying I’m partisan, but you know my side is much better than yours.

You do realize that the first part of that sentence is totally negated by the second part… right?

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