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Max Ride: The Story So Far

Max Ride

By Sarah Cooke

Marvel’s Max Ride series, based on author James Patterson’s hit novel series, follows the story of a young woman and her team of brothers and sisters whom dangerous scientists expose to unethical experimentation for unknown reasons. With MAX RIDE: FINAL FLIGHT—written by Jody Houser, artwork by Marco Failla—premiering September 7, we wanted to take the opportunity to recap the story so far—although if you haven’t read it, we highly recommend doing so!

In the first series, MAX RIDE: FIRST FLIGHT—written by Marguerite Bennett, artwork by Alex Sanchez—Max and her adoptive siblings, Iggy, Nudge, Fang, Gazzy, and Angel, escape the lab where scientists had held them captive and performed tests on them their entire lives. As a result of the tests and some mysterious DNA splicing, the kids now possess wings and the ability to fly, as well as other powers that they’re beginning to discover.

But escaping the lab only begins their challenges. They find themselves on the run from the Erasers, beastly beings genetically designed by the scientists to serve as security guards for the lab. At one point, Max starts hearing voices in her head, telling her she has to save the world. But how, and from what? What does it mean?

Max and the group eventually track the shady activities of the scientists to a secret lab hidden in the underground tunnels of the New York City subway, and later to an address in Manhattan. There, they discover folders with information about their birth parents. Before they have a chance to find the folder for Max’s parents, though, Ari, the leader of the Erasers, breaks in and discovers them, and our heroes have to flee.

After a short breather, Max decides she’s tired of running from the scientists and wants to “take the fight to them,” and the team returns to the underground lab. Once there, they discover a “hatchery” of creatures who served as precursors to themselves—genetic experiments gone wrong. They set the creatures free, and are shortly intercepted by the Erasers.

The story picks up in MAX RIDE: ULTIMATE FLIGHT—written by Jody Houser, artwork by RB Silva—with Fang in critical condition. We quickly learn that Ari inflicted the injuries. In the hospital, the kids meet an F.B.I. agent named Anne Walker, who says she wants to help them. Reluctantly, they agree to stay at Anne’s house, once Fang proves well enough to leave.

Anne appears to have a genuine interest in the kids’ wellbeing, and makes efforts to care for them like a parent, even sending them to a regular school. For a while, life seems unusually normal for our heroes. They even share a Thanksgiving meal together. Although Max still feels puzzled by the voices in her head, she cautiously settles in to her new life, taking classes and seeing a movie with a boy. Eventually, they locate Iggy’s parents, and he goes to live with them.

Soon, though, the kids learn that that this supposedly normal life at least began as a setup. The scientists stationed disguised Erasers at the school to secretly watch over our heroes. Another fight breaks out and, with excellent timing, Iggy swoops in, fends off Ari, and helps the others make their getaway. Iggy’s parent’s it turns out, only care about selling him to the highest bidder.

As events progress, the group learns that a corporation called Itex might be behind the experimentation.  They go to the library to research the company. While there, Max gets knocked out by an impersonator who plans to spy on the others on behalf of the scientists.

While the imposter tries to pass herself off as Max and take over her role as leader of the group, the real Max wakes to find herself, once again, back in the lab. As she tries to fight her way out, the others show up. They had figured out the impersonator right away, but decided to follow the girl in order to find the real Max.

Lead scientist Jeb reveals that he created the impersonator as a replacement for Max after her earlier escape, and says he’s running a test to determine if she lives up to the real deal’s standards. Max and the replacement fight and, when Max has the impersonator in a vulnerable position, Jeb tells her to kill the girl, but the original refuses, and our heroes escape together, once more.

Meanwhile, in a classified location, the Erasers receive an order to “exterminate the failures and burn the rest.”

And on that mysterious note, the series leaves us with a cliffhanger as we wait for the premiere of MAX RIDE: FINAL FLIGHT.

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Go Inside Avengers Alliance: Season 2, Chapter 11

Marvel: Avengers Alliance: Chapter 11

Between the Serpent and his Worthy coupled with those pesky Incursions, there’s plenty to worry about in the world of “Marvel: Avengers Alliance,” meaning it will take your full efforts to help S.H.I.E.L.D. protect the planet—feeling up for it?

We spoke with Associate Producer Tony Sherrill about the newest Worthy, what to expect from missions, and much more as it relates to Chapter 11 of “Marvel: Avengers Alliance” Season 2!

Marvel.com: What are the big story advances for Chapter 11?

Tony Sherrill: Following the destruction on the Black Vortex [in] Spec Op 35, Odin has placed a barrier around Midgard, in hopes to prevent any unwelcomed visitors. Cul Borson’s plan to spread fear has been more than successful; having made the world a dangerous place filled with Incursions and the Worthy, the more powerful foes scramble for survival and will go to great lengths to make their escape.

Marvel.com: What can you tell us about the new Worthy for this chapter?

Tony Sherrill: In this chapter we introduce the last two Worthy: Worthy Black Knight, aka Mokk, Breaker of Faith and Worthy Ghost Rider, aka Greithoth, Breaker of Wills.

Mokk has a few new tricks up his worthy sleeve. As the Breaker of Faith he has three new status effects: Desecrated, Treacherous Tactics, and Damnation. Desecrated removes and prevents resurrection effects, prevents most healing effects, plus removes a large amount of health when it’s removed, similar to Doom. This attack targets all enemies. Treacherous Tactics is a two-round Team Buff that makes melee attacks apply Internal Bleeding, plus gain Hemorrhaging. This buff will also greatly reduce the damage taken from enemy attacks. Damnation causes Desecrated to immediately trigger, but will also prevent Desecrated from being applied again for 1 round.

As the last Worthy, Ghost Rider, who now wields a hammer at the end of his Damnation Chains, has a Breaker of Wills passive. This passive gives him a chance to preemptively counter with Cower and Agony, in addition to halving the damage from any non-Hallowed attacks. His Damnation Chains attack, now called Chains of Greithoth, has had the Dark Forces and Malignant Poison statuses added to it. Greithoth’s second action “Are You Worthy?” will do increased damage with its new Serpent’s Scrutiny property, to those deemed not Worthy. Weakened, Pyrophoric, and Intimidated have been added to his third attack, Feel The Burn, and Broken Will to his fourth attack, Will Breaker.

Marvel.com: As we build to the climax of this story, what challenges do our heroes face?

Tony Sherrill: It’s a very eventful Chapter. The Worthy are on a rampage in London. Red Skull seeking a new power source draws upon the power of Incursions with catastrophic results. Mephisto makes Kingpin an offer he can’t refuse, putting the inhabitants of New York in Jeopardy. M.O.D.O.K. constructs a dimensional portal, but unfortunately something is there waiting on the other side and it’s bad news. Hela seeks an alliance against the Serpent, but can the Queen of Hel be trusted? Many flock to Madripoor with the hope that the Mandarin, yes the Mandarin, can protect them from the Incursions. Just wait until you see Chapter 12 later this month.

Marvel.com: What new heroes and villains debut with this chapter?

Tony Sherrill: This is the chapter where, after all these years of hiding behind the protection of being an NPC, you finally get to punch Cul Borson in the face. Cul Borson is immune to Interrupts and of course, Fear-based statuses. Several of his attacks apply Fear, which can be applied five times, with a 10% chance per application for attacks to fail and cower in fear. With his Hammer Strike he has a chance to apply Contusion, which is a new status that applies Ravaged and up to three applications of Internal Bleeding. Yikes.

Marvel.com: Who takes center stage for the good guys during this chapter?

Tony Sherrill: This is all out chaos and S.H.I.E.L.D. is doing their best to contain it all. Heroes are fighting villains around every corner, in every alley, and on every rooftop. In this Chapter, five of the six missions have Epic Bosses; these make for some really great fights:

  • Mission 1 - Epic Mokk vs. Captain Britain                    
  • Mission 2 - Epic Man-Ape vs. Black Panther                    
  • Mission 3 - Epic Greithoth vs. Dr. Strange                    
  • Mission 5 - Epic Cul Borson vs. Thor (Jane Foster)                   
  • Mission 6 - Epic Mandarin vs. Iron Man   

Marvel.com: What are some of the Heroic Battles we can dig into?

Tony Sherrill: Heroic Battles are my absolute favorite, because they are customized fights that sort of work like puzzles and the [“Marvel: Avengers Alliance”] Designers do such a great job making each fight unique. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Mission 1 - Kamala Khan and Captain Marvel vs. X-Ray and Ironclad                    
  • Mission 2 - Drax and Cammi vs. Black Dwarf and Proxima Midnight                    
  • Mission 3 - Squirrel Girl vs. Targets                   
  • Mission 5 - A-Bomb vs. Abomination                    
  • Mission 6 - Misty Knight and Colleen Wing vs Beetle and Maggia

I saved Mission 4 for last, since this is the very first time we’ve introduced a new villain via a Heroic Battle. In this battle Ant-Man faces Yellowjacket and Crossfire! We also gave Ant-Man some new moves through an E-Iso called Growing, which is based off what is seen in the “Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War” movie. The fight starts off with Ant-Man fighting some grunts for the first wave, being his typical self, shrinking and stealthily attacking and such. In the second wave Crossfire appears and whenever Ant-Man performs an attack with either the Stealthy or Ants! properties, Crossfire will counter him, which is a huge pain in the Ants since every single one of his moves has one of these two properties. This is when Hank Pym steps in to help out poor Ant-Man and guides him in learning how to use his new Growth attacks. I hope you enjoy it.

Play “Marvel: Avengers Alliance” now and look for Chapter 11 coming soon!

Crossfire in Marvel: Avengers AllianceCul Borson in Marvel: Avengers AllianceGhost Rider as Greithhoth in Marvel: Avengers AllianceBlack Knight as Mokk in Marvel: Avengers Alliance

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Parminder Nagra Joins ‘Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ in a Recurring Role

Parminder Nagra (“The Blacklist,” “E.R.,” “Bend it Like Beckham”) has joined “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” in a recurring role, facing off with the organization as they continue to advocate for Inhumans!

Nagra will play a powerful political figure who is outspoken in her distrust of Inhumans and the threat they pose to society.

She joins fellow new cast members Gabriel Luna and Jason O’Mara, who will play Robbie Reyes and the new Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. in the upcoming season.

“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” returns September 20 in its new timeslot, 10:00 PM ET on ABC, for its biggest season yet. Stay up to date with the latest by following @AgentsofSHIELD on Twitter and liking "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." on Facebook!

Parminder Nagra Joins Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

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Stroll Through Harlem with Luke Cage in All-New Images

See the new images above and watch "Marvel's Luke Cage" when it debuts only on Netflix on September 30.

After a sabotaged experiment leaves him with super strength and impenetrable skin, Luke Cage (Mike Colter) becomes a fugitive trying to rebuild his life in modern day Harlem, New York City! But he is soon pulled out of the shadows and must fight a battle for the heart of his city — forcing him to confront a past he tried to escape. See Luke, his allies, and his adversaries in the pictures above.

Watch "Marvel's Luke Cage," streaming only on Netflix September 30! Make sure to follow @LukeCage on Twitter and like "Marvel's Luke Cage" on Facebook for all the latest news and updates.

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Marvel NOW! Hear This: Prowler

Prowler

You may have left your heart in San Francisco, but Prowler might just lose his entire life there this fall.

Writer Sean Ryan and artist Jamal Campbell take Hobie Brown to the city by the bay to endure tourists on the pier, 49ers fans, and a multitude of bad nicknames for the town as Prowler takes a brand new job with a surprising boss who may or may not go by the name of a scavenger animal and boast a pelt of green.

We caught up with the writer who gladly revealed Prowler’s new employer and considered Hobie’s true essence.

Marvel.com: The Prowler has been around for nearly 50 years now and spent a large amount of that time intertwined with Spider-Man. From the encounter with Spidey that first set him on the path of a hero instead of the villain he intended to be to now when he is acting as Peter Parker's bodyguard/stand-in. Considering that, how do you, as a writer, establish Prowler as a character apart from Spider-Man without ignoring the richness of that relationship?

Sean Ryan: That’s definitely been the biggest challenge in writing the book. Prowler is one of those comic book characters that seem to exist when people need him to show up, if that makes sense. So because of that, he has a history that is pretty all over the place. He was a villain, and then a hero, and then he was mercenary working for Silver Sable, and then he was back working with Spider-Man.

At the beginning of this series, he’s working with the Jackal. The first thing I’m trying to figure out in the series is, why does Prowler seem to bounce around from thing to thing? What’s he looking for that makes his decision making so erratic?

Marvel.com: Overall, how would you describe Hobie Brown as a character? What are his essential elements?

Sean Ryan: He’s tough and restless. He grew up struggling to make ends meet, so he’s got a hard edge to him. But as I said earlier, he bounces around from thing to thing. He’s agitated about something he can’t quite put his finger on. I feel like there’s always a level of frustration going on inside of Prowler.

Marvel.com: Another interesting aspect of Prowler is that he, on his own, has a great gift for invention, developing all the tech and tools that make up his costume. How much of a role, if at all, does that aspect of Prowler play in your story?

Sean Ryan: A pretty sizable chunk. Obviously, just in his every day running around as Prowler, using tech and tools is how he is able to even be Prowler; he doesn’t have super powers. He’s a guy that has had to rely on his smarts.

But also, being an inventor is where he started out. Before Spider-Man, before he was Prowler, he was just this hopeful inventor. And maybe he’s forgotten about that.

Marvel.com: Given how few solo adventures Prowler has had over the years, he does not have much by way of a rogue’s gallery or supporting cast. How will the book build on either or both of those? In the early going, can readers expect any familiar faces?

Sean Ryan: That’s something I definitely want to do with the series, give Prowler a strong supporting cast. Early on in the series we’ll see the new female Electro, the old Madame Web, and even the new Madame Web, Julia Carpenter. Hopefully we’ll be able to get more people in as we keep going.

Marvel.com: Where are you setting PROWLER; not just in terms of the actual physical place, but also the feel and energy that you want the setting to have?

Sean Ryan: We’re setting it in San Francisco, at least for the Clone Conspiracy tie-in arc. I know it’s not exactly accurate to the place now, but when I think of the San Francisco in this arc, I always picture the San Francisco from “Zodiac.” Obviously, our story doesn’t take place in the 70’s, but I’m hoping the story can have that same dark vibe. A small, mysterious city on a peninsula that feels like there’s nowhere to escape.

Marvel.com: How would you describe the tone of the series? What kind of feel are you going for early on?

Sean Ryan: I’d say especially for the first arc that ties into Clone Conspiracy, it’s got a 1970’s, paranoid thriller kind of feel. There’s an uneasy vibe I’m trying to go for. Prowler is working for Jackal when the series begins, so already things seem…off. Then for Prowler, things start to get weirder and start to close in on him. He’s being torn in different directions, so hopefully it all starts to feel pretty suffocating.

Keep up with the latest on Marvel NOW! with Marvel.com and our social channels!

Prowler

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