Marvel has released a teaser image for a forthcoming new Defenders series. The image, which features artwork by Javier Rodríguez, shows the Masked Raider imploring Doctor Strange to bring a new Defenders team together. Members of the team from throughout the years, including Hulk, Valkyrie, Silver Surfer, Namor, and more are shown on tarot cards floating in front of the sorcerer supreme.
The inclusion of the Masked Raider could signal that writer Al Ewing is involved with the series. Ewing introduced a new version of the classic Marvel character in 2019’s Marvel Comics #1000 special, and the character appeared in that year’s Incoming! one-shot in another story written by Ewing, though he has yet to make any further appearances since then. The writer also helped spearhead 2018’s Defenders: The Best Defense mini-event, writing two of the story’s five one-shots including the finale. Ewing’s Immortal Hulk is apparently drawing towards its fiftieth issue conclusion, but Defenders could give the writer an opportunity to continue working with the character (if plans to do so are not already in place).
Putting Rodríguez on a title with ties throughout the Marvel Universe is a smart move. The artist, along with inker Álvaro López, has beautifully rendered key moments and characters from the publisher’s long history in the Mark Waid-written History of the Marvel Universe miniseries. His run as artist on the Saladin Ahmed-penned Exiles series also displayed that he can handle working with a large cast of characters, particularly during elegantly-choreographed action sequences.
Keep an eye out for more news on Marvel’s latest Defenders teams, which the publisher says will arrive “this summer.”