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  1. #16
    The Celestial Dragon Tien Long's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hybrid View Post
    That's interesting. Which ones live in NJ? I just always assumed everyone was in NYC (kinda like the superheroes they write about), since that's where their HQ is. Marvel has always had a distinct East Coast flavor, if not outright NYC. Of the legendary Marvel trio: Stan and Jack are native New Yorkers, while Steve is from Pennsylvania and moved to NYC later. In the '80s, many of the talent were from the East Coast such as Tom DeFalco (Queens), Ann Nocenti (NYC), Jim Owsley/Christopher Priest (Queens), Jim Shooter (Pittsburgh), Bill Sienkiewicz (Pennsylvania), Chris Claremont (Long Island), Frank Miller (Vermont), Ron Frenz (Pennsylvania), Bill Mantlo (Brooklyn), Ed Hannigan (Rhode Island), and Peter Allen David (New Jersey). There were definitely exceptions, like Walt Simonson (Tennessee), Louise Simonson (Georgia), Bob McLeod (Florida), Mark Gruenwald (Wisconsin) and John Byrne (Canada), among others, but an exception is exactly that.

    That may be why Marvel has always been oriented around NYC, because from the earliest days the creators were either NYC or close to it, and as they say "write what you know". If anything, the doors have only opened up today for creators from all around to be in Marvel, and I think the internet has something to do with it. But I'd be very interested to know which Marvel people were living in NJ.
    Ha, well, I can't say too much about the identity of these individuals. That could lead to people figuring out who I am and that is something I'd like to keep close to the vest. I'll just say that one of these individuals was an editor who is no longer with the company. I kinda chuckled a bit when I first saw him because, unless you're a comic book nerd, you wouldn't know he was an editor at Marvel. He looked just like a regular commuter reading a New York Post. The other wasn't an editor per se, but someone who worked in the marketing department. He saw me reading comics on my iPhone and offered some comics (employees at Marvel get free issues every Wednesday, of both Marvel and DC apparently). We ended up talking about Marvel the whole bus ride, which was super informative and enjoyable. I talked to him about what I had seen in Hong Kong and we talked about the Netflix shows, OMD/BND, and whether or not old characters should be replaced minorities.
    "I am a man of peace."

    "A man of peace...who fights like ten tigers."

  2. #17
    Astonishing Member j9ac9k's Avatar
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    I'm all for any writer who can write for a city other than NYC if they can really get us involved with that city. It's always difficult though because if that writer leaves, and a certain character is still based in that city, you'd need that other writer to be just as familiar. And if not, sure -you can just write hero stories that can take place in any city, but if it's not NYC, you'd get left out of a lot of stuff that happens. It might work best for a hero who can travel great distances easily, although I feel most Marvel heroes tend to stick to their 'hoods.

  3. #18
    Astonishing Member Raye's Avatar
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    I like it in a way, it keeps the characters close together for potential teamups and they can hang out with each other which is nice. But at the same time, I can't help but wonder why the villains don't go attack some OTHER city where theya re less likely to get their face punched in. concentrating all the heroes in one city is effectively leaving other places vulnerable, if the villains thought it through for a second.

    so I am fine with a good chunk of the superheroes being based in NY, but I'd like to see them branch out more, maybe have the Avengers send at least a couple heroes to assorted major cities to they're not left completely open to attack. And I have liked it in the past when a book is set someplace else, like Excalibur, Alpha Flight, West Coast Avengers, or Ant-Man while set in Florida. NY is fine, but i like to see a bit more than JUST that.

  4. #19
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    One of the first bits of advice a writer gets is 'write what you know,' which makes basing so many of their stories on or around the city in which they live seem sensible. I may not be a New Yorker, but I can at least identify some of the familiar landmarks or street and borough names they used to name-drop so regularly. (There feels like there's been less of that, over the years, with most shots of 'New York City' in the last decade being a kind of generic vaguely futuristic city and looking nothing like the actual buildings or skyline...)

    I like the sense of continuity it's got, the easy familiarity for someone who has grown up with Marvel, how even the passersby feel just a tad more 'real' than someone from some made up city like Metropolis, and, thanks to New York City being so varied, between it's boroughs, being able to give an assortment of tonal feels, from Hell's Kitchen to Manhattan.

    I do *also* like when stories go elsewhere. Alpha Flight, in Canada, was always a favorite. The X-Men and New Mutants might be in New York *state,* but, barring Hellfire Club shenanigans back in the '80s, had little reason to go into the city. Thor had adventures in Asgard, and the FF in the Negative Zone, and there was a West Coast branch of the Avengers, for a time, all of which were great to break it up a bit. Atlantis and Latveria and Wakanda and the Savage Land were out there for made up fantasy places, as well, even if the Marvel universe doesn't have a Gotham or a Central City.

    I see New York City as central to some characters. Daredevil and Hell's Kitchen are fairly well entwined, IMO. Others, not so much. The Baxter Building may have been home to the FF for practically ever, but it still feels more like a landing pad / central base for their occasionally cosmic travels.

  5. #20
    Extraordinary Member Zero Hunter's Avatar
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    It makes the Marvel U seem small. It also make the villains seem stupid. If everyone and their brother is in New York why are they there other than dumb writing. Even a low level clown like the Shocker could be a boss in some city like Miami or Atlanta just because no one is there. Marvel writer just have that attitude that the only two cities that exist in America are New York and LA.

    Even the arguement that is makes it better for crossovers doesn't really hold up anymore with the amount of teleporters and super fast transportation the heroes have these days.

  6. #21
    Astonishing Member Ptrvc's Avatar
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    Hulk really only strays into New York for crossovers. Most of the time he's kicking around the West Coast to the Midwest, and up to Canada. A lot of time in the Southwest specifically.

  7. #22
    Astonishing Member Ptrvc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raye View Post
    I like it in a way, it keeps the characters close together for potential teamups and they can hang out with each other which is nice. But at the same time, I can't help but wonder why the villains don't go attack some OTHER city where theya re less likely to get their face punched in. concentrating all the heroes in one city is effectively leaving other places vulnerable, if the villains thought it through for a second.

    so I am fine with a good chunk of the superheroes being based in NY, but I'd like to see them branch out more, maybe have the Avengers send at least a couple heroes to assorted major cities to they're not left completely open to attack. And I have liked it in the past when a book is set someplace else, like Excalibur, Alpha Flight, West Coast Avengers, or Ant-Man while set in Florida. NY is fine, but i like to see a bit more than JUST that.
    Maybe they just get shot in other cities?

    If you're not bullet proof, some cop or citizen in small town USA is just going to blow you away while you're giving your big villain speech.

  8. #23
    Ultimate Member Lee Stone's Avatar
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    It made sense when Marvel first started, and up into the '70s, because it wasn't too overly populated.

    But into the '80s and '90s when the characters multiplied greatly, NYC could be quite crowded.

    They tried the west coast. Several times, actually. West Coast Avengers, Champions... Spider-Woman spent time there, as did Werewolf by Night and She-Hulk.

    But what happens when those books get cancelled?
    Same thing that happens to books featuring characters on other planets. They're forgotten. And considered 'frozen'.
    It's assumed that since there's no current title featuring that location, nothing worth talking about is happening over there.

    In the years following the cancellation of West Coast Avengers, can you really believe that all that activity in the area during that long run just suddenly stopped because their book was cancelled?
    "There's magic in the sound of analog audio." - CNET.

  9. #24
    Incredible Member Hybrid's Avatar
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    Nowadays it might also be a matter of practicality for the writers. Setting them away from NYC means distancing them from everyone. That in turn can lead them to be pretty isolated and thus limiting crossovers, especially as far as events are concerned.

    The Runaways are a pretty good example. Them being in Los Angeles means the other heroes have little presence in their book and vice versa. In their original 18 issue run (a classic btw), the only established characters to have a presence were Cloak and Dagger, and even then only a few issues. They’ve had other crossovers, like with the Young Avengers in Civil War and Secret Invasion, and have met other heroes, but most of them happened when they went to NYC.

    Granted, the Runaways as said are great, and I think of them as an indie series set in the MU especially since it was made by BKV. However, other heroes may not have that benefit. So that’s why I doubt they’ll be spreading everyone anytime soon.

  10. #25
    Astonishing Member Raye's Avatar
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    Though, I don't think every book/character really NEEDS constant access to crossovers/teamups with the rest of the MU. Some of them are just fine off in their own little corner, and there's no reason that little corner has to be in NY.

  11. #26
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    There's also a matter of making their earlier stories show their age, moreso than usual for comics. When you have a fictional city like Gotham, you'll occasional get dated references like pop culture references and technology. When you set something in a real world, you also tie it even more to the culture of that city at that time in history.

    Hell's Kitchen at the time comics were first printed was far from the best place to live. Hell's Kitchen today, while still has problems like all neighborhoods do, is miles more pleasant than the 1960s.

  12. #27
    Incredible Member Hybrid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raye View Post
    Though, I don't think every book/character really NEEDS constant access to crossovers/teamups with the rest of the MU. Some of them are just fine off in their own little corner, and there's no reason that little corner has to be in NY.
    Yeah, I said it works for the Runaways, but they’ve always been unique in the setting of the Marvel Universe. They have their own style, and were made from the beginning to be an unconventional take on the genre. They’re also interesting enough as a cast and premise to hold their own.

    However, other characters may not have that going for them. Marvel has always done well in having the heroes play off each other and make the setting feel shared. Even Kamala, her big deal not being in NYC, is still pretty close being across the bay and all. The issue with making a comic about a new hero in, say, Chicago is that the hero and their cast would have to be made whole cloth. Without support of the wider universe, you can see how things would fall apart fast.

  13. #28
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    I mean, I don't see how villains would want to go to other towns or cities. In NYC, they know which lawyer will get them out of prison the quickest, they know the good hiding places, they know who they can get gear from, they know when Spiderman will be on patrol and where, they know which villains are working where and who they can get help from, etc.

    Working anywhere else means going into a very unfamiliar situation.

  14. #29
    Astonishing Member Panic's Avatar
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    It's like Doctor Who tending to stick to Britain as the centre of world invasions, London in particular - it's easier for the production crew, but as the audience has expanded world-wide it is less desirable and makes less sense. Much like seeing London invaded is more fun and more relevant for those of us who live near enough to visit London regularly, I suspect people who live near New York or are familiar with it find Marvel's stories being based there more fun than those who live far away/have never been.

  15. #30
    Incredible Member Hybrid's Avatar
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    Not true, I’m from the Northwest and I’ve always found it to be part of the Marvel charm.

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