Around this time last month, renowned artist Milo Manara and Marvel Comics came under fire for their variant cover for ‘Spider-Woman’ #1 that featured an over-sexualized Jessica Drew. Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso later apologized for the cover and promised to be “extra-vigilant in policing their content and how we use them in our marketing,” but stated that there were still plans for Manara variants in the future.
Things looked bleak for the famed erotic artist this week when news got out that his name had been removed from solicitations for ‘Thor’ #2 (which features the brand new female God of Thunder) and ‘Avengers and X-Men: AXIS’ #1 where he was in line to contribute more variant covers. Many sources such as Comic Book Resources and Newsarama reported the news and attributed the cancellation of the covers to the recent scandals, however, that does not appear to be the case.
Bleeding Cool uncovered that Manara’s upcoming variants have simply been delayed rather than cancelled due to his workload on his graphic novel titled ‘Le Caravage,’ which follows the life of Italian artist Caravaggio. Because his schedule was filled by this passion project, Manara was unable to meet Marvel’s deadlines and his covers were simply pushed back because the company was happy to wait for them. This was confirmed by senior Marvel executives C.B. Cebulski and Tom Brevoort in a series of tweets to the outlet praising them for digging deeper:
More shoddy, speculative articles from the comic book “press” today. Thank you, @bleedingcool for being the one site to check facts first.
— C.B. Cebulski (@CBCebulski) September 23, 2014
— Tom Brevoort (@TomBrevoort) September 24, 2014
While some fans were quick to label the “cancellation” of Manara’s covers as #ComicGate and reporters took this report to be fact because no one was commenting on the news, it was all simply a case of miscommunication. There’s no need to cry controversy over this situation just yet. But time will tell just how “extra-vigilant” Marvel Comics will be from now on with their covers, variant or not, and we’ll see if scandal continues to follow the acclaimed artist during his time with the House of Ideas.
Are you disappointed to hear that Milo Manara’s upcoming variant covers for ‘Thor’ and ‘AXIS’ aren’t cancelled? Or are you pleased that the artist is still able to contribute to these new Marvel titles? Sound off in the comments below.