Fans Outraged Over Marvel Comics’ Team up With Arms Manufacturer

Comics publisher is releasing a special edition comic with Northrop Grumman

Marvel fans are outraged and disappointed by news that the comics publisher is publishing a limited-edition comic book as part of a partnership with Northrop Grumman, one of the largest military contractors and arms manufacturers in the world.

Marvel announced the partnership in a tweet early Friday morning, urging fans to visit its New York Comic Con booth on Saturday afternoon for more details.

Marvel was otherwise mum on what the partnership entailed, but Bleeding Cool reported that the publisher is releasing a special edition comic featuring a Northrop Grumman-branded superhero team: the Northrop Grumman Elite Nexus (or N.G.E.N.). Further, the comic will feature the private military contractors’ heroes teaming up  the Avengers. See the cover art here.

Fans were incensed by the association of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes (The Avengers) with a manufacturer best known for drones and bombers, and several major violations of environmental laws for which the company has paid millions in fines.

Fans were particularly incensed by Marvel-produced advertising comparing fictional Stark Industries to Northrop Grumman.

Some fans compared it to Marvel’s “Secret Empire,” a recent, very controversial crossover event in the comics in which Captain America was revealed to be an agent of Hyrdra (in the Marvel universe, an offshoot and continuation of WWII-era Nazis). Others bluntly declared the partnership to be “propaganda for the military-industrial complex.”

Meanwhile, Marvel canceled plans for its “The Punisher” panel this week following the Las Vegas shooting, which left at least 58 dead and hundreds injured.

You can check out some of the responses below.