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Debuting in 2003, 1602 was a collaboration between Sandman creator, Neil Gaiman, and Andy Kubert that reimagined the superhero universe happening a whole lot of years sooner than conventional canon. In the method, they launched a bunch of variants of basic Marvel characters, a few of whom deserve a re-assessment.

1602 is one in all Marvel’s most underrated alternate actuality storylines — and effectively price greater than only a few visits. If readers are fortunate sufficient to get one other probability to return to the seventeenth Century Marvel Universe, it ought to be with a concentrate on the X-Men of this unbelievable timeline.

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The world of 1602 was one the place the standard Marvel heroes and villains debuted on the daybreak of the seventeenth century, in a world of much less superior expertise and the place previous world powers remained in charge of the globe. The authentic collection served as a strong introduction to loads of variants of Marvel characters, together with a spymaster Nick Fury, Doctor Strange and his spouse Clea, a time-displaced Captain America, and loads of others. Some of essentially the most compelling although had been the scholars of Carlos Javier, a Spanish recluse who used his sources to create a secure area for folks like him — mutants. However, on this world, they had been often known as Witchbreeds (a time period that has been adopted in modern-day Otherworld) and hunted with much more dogmatic fervor than in most realities.


The scope of 1602 and expansive forged meant there have been solely a handful of mutant characters launched — with variants of the founding 5 X-Men working with Javier. Meanwhile, Javier’s counterpart was the Grand Inquisitor Enrique, secretly this world’s Magneto. Having gained a strong place within the Catholic Church, Enrique did his greatest to guard Witchbreeds who might go as people (such because the Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch, and Toad). Eventually uncovered, Enrique and his allies ventures to America across the similar time as Javier and his allies. The story ended with the fact staying intact as a present to Uatu, who witnessed Enrique departing — leaving his youngsters, Petros and Wanda, with Javier as he made a brand new house for them within the New World.


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This world has been revisited a handful of occasions through the years — with a direct sequel collection introducing 1602 variants of Iron Man and Green Goblin. The Spider-Man and Fantastic Four of this timeline obtained their very own miniseries storylines, as effectively. A model of this timeline additionally appeared in Battleworld throughout Secret Wars.– with Angela transversing the world and encountering variants of Venom, Enchantress, and the Guardians of the Galaxy. Angela additionally encountered a handful of Witchbreed throughout her travels, however the X-Men have notably not gotten their very own stand-alone storyline — which is a disgrace, as a result of the Witchbreed makes for an enchanting strategy to the franchise.


At its coronary heart, 1602 was a method for Neil Gaiman and Andy Kubert to think about a extra simple and classical tackle the Marvel Universe. With an enormous pool of characters and dramatic stakes immediately afforded to the Witchbreed and their plight, there are many tales to dive into with the 1602 variants of the X-Men. It might discover the destiny of Enrique, who might have gone on to create his world’s Acolytes. The enlargement of a seventeenth century Xavier Institute within the “new world” might be used to discover the inherent contradictions of the founding of the United States — a land of freedom that also enslaved and managed a lot of its inhabitants.


A potential new Witchbreed led story might even play up on beforehand established ideas, utilizing them as a method to introduce loads of different basic heroes and villains to the setting. 1602 briefly teased the existence of the Phoenix rising up because of Grey’s demise and will dive into how a far much less superior world offers with cosmic forces. It might even dive into the occasions of the Secret Wars miniseries, which positioned Javier as the brand new king of England. 1602 is effectively price one other go to — and the X-Men would make a perfect focus.

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