As fans, who hasn't thought about reviving a long-lost favorite? We've all had thoughts about a second season of Firefly, a continuation of a beloved comic book series like Nextwave, or the sequel to Dredd that never materialized.
Sometimes we just need to vent about it. It sucks that it went away, and we want it back. Other times the concept is so good that it just needs a second chance (or third, or fourth...). Then we have the times that something is left on a cliffhanger that we just NEED to have resolved.
So these are just some of my thoughts about series that deserve another chance.
Team up series in comics are a long-time favorite of mine. I love the feeling of a shared universe, and what better way to do that than a series dedicated to teaming up various heroes.
DC has had several- for example, The Brave & the Bold was largely a Batman team-up book, and DC Comics Presents was Superman centered team-ups. Marvel has had multiple- several volumes of Marvel Team-Up, Spider-Man Team Up (by various names) and even just-released Guardians Team-Up. My favorite of all of these though is Marvel Two-In-One.
The funny thing about that is I've never read an issue of MTIO. There's two reasons I love it without having read an issue though, and I think they both are damn good reasons for reviving the series.
The ever loving blue-eyed lead.
Unlike Marvel Team-Up, which featured Spider-Man in most but not all of its issues, Marvel Two-In-One had one lead character, none other than Benjamin J. Grimm, the Thing.
If any character is Marvel Comics' everyman, it's Ben Grimm. A victim of circumstance (and maybe his friendship with Reed Richards), Ben was mutated into his rocky, orange form after a rocket test flight went horribly wrong.
Although Ben was a key player in the Fantastic Four, Marvel saw his popularity, and took advantage in the best way. Ben starred in a solo animated series (in which his transformation was the result of magic rings, not cosmic rays). He was the frequent focus of Fantastic Four .
Ben was likable and relateable. He loved his Aunt Petunia. He mentored kids in his old neighborhood of Yancy Street. He was a college football star. The only thing kids couldn't relate to was the fact he was a giant orange rock monster. And the fact that, thanks to time travel, he was actually Blackbeard the pirate, but that's a story for another day.
After the success of Marvel Team-Up, a companion series was natural, and Ben was a no brainer for a lead. He'd already been in any situation you could think of (see the last sentence of the previous paragraph), so teaming up with heroes other than his FF teammates was perfect. In one issue, he could team up with the X-Men's Angel to fight in the dungeon of doom (I don't know what that is, but I want to read it!). In the next, he could be taking the Sandman out for happy hour and convincing him to give up his villainous ways (a change that would stick for YEARS).
Ben was a character that you'd love to do either thing with, and his stories varied wildly thanks to that. He was a hero you always wanted to hang out with. If Spider-Man was you, the Thing was your cool older brother or uncle that you'd give anything to hang out with, no matter what you were doing.
The stories were Marvel Team-Up's insane little brother.
Thanks to the previous point, Marvel Two-In-One was nuts. While Marvel Team-Up was at times weird (Spidey once teamed up with Red Sonja, who had possessed his wife's body), the series was mostly straight forward team-ups with other heroes. Ben teamed up with everyone in almost every situation.
Okay, that cover was a joke (the actual team up with with the Sphinx, an obscure Nova villain), but given the nature of the series a team-up with Batman was not the weirdest thing to ever happen. It wasn't even close.
The book was very much an anything goes situation. He teamed with villains, monsters, obscure Z-listers, ordinary kids, heroes from the future, legends from WWII, alternate reality heroes, mutants, and Inhumans, often right after, or even in the same issue as current Marvel stars like Spidey, Captain America, the Vision, and Thor. Hell, he even teamed up with himself twice!
The series was a creative dream, and just plain fun. Even for someone like me a little too young to have read the series during publication, you only need to look at the covers to imagine the insanity happening inside.
Ben Grimm needs to be unleashed upon the true insanity of the Marvel Universe once again. I really hope it happens soon.