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1/06/2020 6:05 am  #1

"Imaginary" Handbooks Questions

Historical text from CxPulp:
04-12-2014, 02:20 AM
Hey, folks. As the instigator of the "Imaginary" Handbooks (or IH, for short) threads (and I hope I'm not stepping on anybody's toes when I do those), I wanted to ask folks here a question or three about future such threads.

1. Since this year is the tenth anniversary of the launch of the modern Marvel Handbooks, I started doing IH threads based on the tenth anniversary of the handbooks that were published in 2004, starting with the X-Men and then Spider-Man. The third handbook published that year centered on the Avengers. However, there's an Avengers movie coming out next year, and when last Marvel was still giving the greenlight to producing Handbooks (even though they weren't advertising them as such), the Avengers had been pretty well plumbed and covered in great detail. This isn't to dismiss what has happened in the Avengers titles since the "Avenger: Roll Call" handbook was published, but since there are some big storylines still happening in the Avengers titles that might be concluded by the time the next movie comes out, I wanted to ask: Should we do an IH thread on the Avengers to commemorate the 2004 handbook's release, or should we wait for the movie?

2. Not counting the decades-themed books, there seem to be three models for a handbook to follow: a) all-new or almost all-new entries with maybe one or two expanded entries, b) mostly all-new entries with some updates on previous entries (see: most of the movie-themed handbooks); or c) a combination of all-new entries, updates on previous entries, and entries that seemingly reprint previously done entries with maybe some new information added and/or new artwork for the main image (see Vampires: The Marvel Undead or X-Men: The Phoenix Force Handbook, or the full entries with new information included at the back of a number of Marvel trade paperbacks in the last couple of years). When I do the IH threads, I try to focus on IH's that would follow either models A or B. However, I've been considering some subjects that, at this point, might be possible only with model C. So the question is: Do you have a particular preference for a handbook model, or are you happy with a handbook as long as it includes at least some new entries?

3. Speaking of handbook models and subjects, which of the following subjects do you think would be best served by which model of handbook: Alpha Flight; Namor the Sub-Mariner; The Punisher; Luke Cage and/or Iron Fist (together or separately); Daredevil; The Hulk and/or She-Hulk (together or separately); Moon Knight; The Golden Age; or Squadron Supreme?

I know this is all purely intellectual exercise, and I certainly have no connection to Marvel Comics, so please don't anybody think this is announcing any actual handbooks coming up (if Marvel ever greenlights handbooks again). And again, I hope anybody who actually worked on the handbooks doesn't think I'm stepping on any toes with this stuff.
04-12-2014, 04:44 PM
1) I personally like the imaginary threads as well as the wish lists. As to starting an Avengers IH thread i say go ahead it will help give the forum some activity and there has been enough Avenger related books and new members to more fill a new Handbook. It can always be updated at the time of the movie.

2) My preference would be option A leaving the Updates/expanded entries to be done annually or quarterly in update books. That said i am happy with Handbooks regardless of format. Until recently i was about a 2 hour round trip away from a comic store and the only time i made a regular trip was the day a handbook related book came out.

3) Alpha Flight and Golden Age could easily fit option A with plenty of material not touched upon as yet. The rest could fit A, B or C with literally thousands of characters, teams ect. that have not really been profiled yet.
Andy E. Nystrom
04-12-2014, 05:40 PM
I don't have any strong opinions on format since these are all hypothetical, beyond maybe throwing in the odd index from time to time rather than just the Handbooks. I do agree that these threads are a good idea for one reason in particular: in the absence of new Handbooks, we need new topics, stuff that doesn't fall easily under the General Q&A thread to keep this section alive and not stagnating. I mean the Poster thread obviously needs a lot of work but beyond the occasional new profile sooner or later the Master List and Sightings wells are going to run dry, as will the general Index list once I add in the original George Olshevsky series. So we definitely need stuff like this to keep things active.

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