British comics and sci-fi writer Paul Cornell wrote the relaunch of the monthly Wolverine series for Marvel NOW with Alan Davis and recently relaunched it again for All-New Marvel NOW, with a storyline that has seen Wolverine deal with his missing healing factor. Upcoming issues will lead up to the promoted Death Of Wolverine series, to be written by Charles Soule and see the Wolverine comic come to its end.
But why isn't Paul Cornell finishing the story he began? That was the question I received several times after the news was announced, including from some senior industry figures.
Well, I understand that he pitched for the book, but the higher ups didn't go for it. And, after asking Mark Millar as a courtesy (knowing he'd say no), Marvel went for Charles Soule's pitch for the book, after his Inhuman outline had gone down so well.
I'm not sure, but it's possible the amount of comics crediting Soule as writer in September might hit double figures…
But, remember, this is the way that Marvel does things. The Death Of Wolverine storyline was decided in February last year, as Bleeding Cool reported at the time, at a creative summit – one that Paul Cornell didn't attend. While DC Comics have a reputation for micromanaging comics, repeatedly editing, re-editing and re-re-editing until publication , Marvel are generally happier to let most creators do their own thing – as long as it is within an arranged framework. It's not uncommon for creators to be told, get characters from the current point A to a point B that they have editorially chosen, they don't care how it's done. But they have to get to point B.
Sometimes, as John Byrne once opined, you are a cog in the machine…