The Viking-esque addition comes courtesy the creative team of writer Jason Aaron (current scribe of Thor, go figure) and artist Chris Bachalo. In an interview with Marvel.com, Aaron and Bachalo say they’ll focus on the character’s unique position in the Marvel U, along with the weird visuals and environments that he inhabits. The first issue will “feel very familiar,” Bachalo says, but “it’s not going to stay that way.” If the battle axe wasn’t enough, Entertainment Weekly previewed Bachalo’s concept art of the Strange wielding a bow-and-arrow and shield. In that interview, Aaron explains:
We don’t want him to just be the guy who stands there and shoots magic energy out of his hands. We want him to be able to dive into different kinds of fights. So we’ll see him use his power and use a lot of different weapons in very different ways. And yeah, Chris is having a blast with that, the way he draws, a very active superhero version of Doctor Strange.
On the cosmic end of the Marvel U, the publisher also announced a new creative team and cover for Captain Marvel. Writer Kelly Sue Deconnick—who is largely responsible for Carol Danvers’ long overdue rise in rank and A-list status—will depart the series to focus on other projects. Hoping to maintain the character’s jet fighter momentum, will be writers Tara Butters and Michele Fazekas, who, as the showrunners of the excellent Marvel’s Agent Carter, know a thing or two about about well-written, kick-ass heroines. The series will follow Captain Marvel, now an Avenger and a Guardian of the Galaxy, in her new role as the planet’s first line of defense against extraterrestrial threats. In an interview with Fast Company, the book’s editor Sana Amanat elaborates on that balance:
This is really meant to be the next level for Captain Marvel. Carol is really meant to be a soldier and a commander, and also a diplomat. We’re really trying to build up this space complex and this space world. You’ll really feel like there’s an extension of the Avengers world into space, but not necessarily lost out in the Guardians of the Galaxy cosmos. It’s rooted in Earth but also an extension into the galaxy.
Kris Anka will serve as series artist, bringing a streamlined and functional design to the character. And whether they like it or not, this new creative team will help set the tone for the character’s 2018 film, which is looking on track to bring in more recruits for the rapidly growing Carol Corps.