Marvel's New Hip-Hop Variants Homage Future, Czarface


Marvel has a new crop of collectible hip-hop variant covers, keeping the company firmly in the middle of the venn diagram of rap music and nerdom. This time around, artists Consequence, Future & Zaytoven, Masta Ace, Blackalicious, and Czarface get the Marvel treatment with recreated album covers on the first issues of Hawkeye, Thanos, Inhumans vs. X-Men, Slapstick, and Marvel’s new kaiju series Monsters Unleashed.

The hip-hop variants have been one of Marvel’s most successful collections over the last year, since their debut at the beginning of 2015’s All-New, All-Different initiative. Currently, Marvel is moving towards its newest publishing move Marvel NOW!, which has already begun in some ongoing titles, but it’s clear the hip-hop covers aren’t going away any time soon. Earlier in October, Marvel published a coffee table book collection of all its hip-hop variants.

These new covers from Marvel are only the latest revealed this month alone. A few weeks ago, Marvel unveiled covers that paid homage to Missy Elliot’s Under Construction, Nas’s Life is Good, and Dr. Dre’s Compton, the pseudo-soundtrack for last year’s Straight Outta Compton for Invincible Iron Man, Black Panther: World of Wakanda, The Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows, Venom, and Iron Fists.

Check out the covers below. First, there’s Cullen Bunn’s Monsters Unleashed featuring art from Mike Deodato and Frank D’Armata, which pays homage to Future & Zaytoven’s Beast Mode.


Next, there’s Jeff Lemire and Charles Soule’s crossover extravaganza Inhumans vs. X-Men with the hip-hop cover from Wilfred Santiago that references Masta Ace’s Sittin’ On Chrome.

Marco Rudy was inspired by Blackalicious’s 2002 summer album Blazing Arrow with his Hawkeye #1 cover for Kelly Thompson’s upcoming run, putting Kate Bishop front and center.

Slapstick, the Marvel Universe’s avatar for vintage cartoon hooliganism, is getting his own series from Fred Van Lente and Reilly Brown, while his hip-hop cover comes from Rahzzah and Consequence’s 2007 debut Don’t Quit Your Day Job.

And finally, Czarface’s own homage to comics, Every Hero Needs a Villain, goes full circle with Mike Del Mundo’s art of Thanos for Jeff Lemire’s newest series starring the purple demagogue.

These covers hit shelves along side their book debuts in November and December.

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