Doug Glassman, who Tumblrs at '80s Marvel Rocks!]
As realities collapse and merge and the Ultimate Universe makes its own stand against our heroes on Earth-616, Marvel is set to go through a massive change. Gone is the standard Earth-616 ... actually, all of existence is gone. The one place left in the universe is the Battleworld, a patchwork planet assembled from bits of remnant alternate universes. A slew of titles will take place on this strange new world and many of them have direct connections to older stories. I've created the following spreadsheet to track the announced Secret Wars tie-ins and to pair them with suggested trades to read beforehand. I owe IGN and writers Jesse Schedeen and Joshua Yehl for this constantly updated article that accumulated the many series announcements.
Before you look through the Google Docs spreadsheet, I have a few things to mention. Several titles won't be ending for Secret Wars and those have been excluded from the spreadsheet. These are the newer, more experimental and artistic titles, specifically The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Howard The Duck, Black Widow, All-New Hawkeye, Spider-Gwen, Ms. Marvel, and Punisher. (Yes, I just called a Punisher book "artistic." I'm surprised as well.) These books will have a "Last Days" arc as a tie-in to the big event instead, so the natural recommendation for all of these books will be their first trades.
The "Personal Interest Index" column is my own personal interest in a given title. These ratings are not indicative of Collected Editions as a whole, nor are they meant to be a definitive recommendation. For instance, you'll find it unsurprising that the one Rick Remender book, Hail Hydra, has a "1" rating on the PII while Siege, by the often controversial Kieron Gillen, rates a "5" from me. Feel free to leave comments about titles you're interested in or other trade recommendations, but please do so using the comment function and not by editing the spreadsheet itself.
Next week: Ultron Unlimited. I promise.