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Marvel’s Head of X Jonathan Hickman Exits X-Men Line

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Marvel’s Head of X is abdicating his position. Jonathan Hickman (along with the art team of RB Silva, Pepe Larraz, and Marte Gracia) turned the X-Men into the hottest superhero franchise in comics when he relaunched the line via the dual House of X and Powers of X miniseries. He went on to help chart the course for a large and cohesive X-Men line featuring six or more titles at a time. He helmed the ongoing X-Men series and relaunched the New Mutants series. But he has since moved on from both books and we now know that his upcoming X-Men event Inferno, which will provide answers to questions posed in those earliest miniseries, will mark his exit from the X-Men line.

“Oh, plans have changed entirely,” Hickman tells Entertainment Weekly. “When I pitched the X-Men story I wanted to do, I pitched a very big, very broad, three-act, three-event narrative, the first of which was House of X. And while this loosely worked as a three-year plan, I told Marvel upfront that I honestly had no idea how long the first part would last because there were a lot of interesting ideas that I had seeded that other creators would want to play with, and so, we left this rather open-ended. I was also pretty clear with all the writers that came into the office what the initial, three-act plan was so no one would be surprised when it was time for the line to pivot.”

He continues, “However, I also knew that I was cooking with dynamite, and it was very possible that what I had written in House of X, and the ideas contained within, was not actually the first act of a three-act story, but something that resonated more deeply and worked more like Giant-Size X-Men, where it would represent a paradigm shift in the entire X-Men line for a prolonged period of time. So, during the pandemic, when the time came for me to start pointing things toward writing the second-act event, I asked everyone if they were ready for me to do that, and to a man, everyone wanted to stay in the first act. It was really interesting, because I appreciated that House of X resonated with them to the extent that they didn’t want it to end, but the reality was that I knew I would be leaving the line early.”

And so Hickman’s tenure will come to an end. The X-Men will go through a process similar to the one that led into Hickman’s time as Head of X, with a weekly X-Men event series starting in January that will lead into another X-Men line-wide relaunch. As for Hickman, he’s moving onto his ‘Next Big Marvel Thing.”

What do you think? Let us know in the comments. Inferno kicks off in September.

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