In Steve Rogers’ America, mutants have their own territory, New Tian—a win for Homo Superior, who traditionally find themselves “hated and feared” in the Marvel Universe. But tensions rise in this new world order—tensions detailed in the June 14-debuting SECRET EMPIRE: UNITED by writer Jim Zub and artist Ario Anindito.
We spoke with Zub about the role mutants play in Secret Empire, who you can expect to see in the halls of New Tian, and more!
Jim Zub: New Tian is a mutant freehold of sorts, but not without complication. Mutants may have their own territory, but any peace they have with the Hydra Nation is tenuous at best. On the ground and in the halls of power, there’s trouble stirring.
Marvel.com: And which merry mutants find themselves living in New Tian?
Jim Zub: I don’t want to give too much away, but there’s a really interesting cross section of members from pretty much any mutant team you can name. Expect to see Xorn, Archangel, Sebastian Shaw, and Magik, among others.
Marvel.com: Speaking of Xorn, I hear he’s in charge of New Tian. How does he keep the peace with Hydra after what they’ve done to America?
Jim Zub: Xorn is in an unenviable position, trying to maintain the gains New Tian represents for his people while abhorring what Hydra represents and their tactics. Whether that peace can be maintained is one of the big plot points we cover in SECRET EMPIRE: UNITED.
Secret Empire: United #1 cover by Ryan Stegman
Marvel.com: What’s it been like working with Ario Anindito?
Jim Zub: Ario is wonderful! His work has rock solid storytelling without sacrificing action-packed panels; I know readers are going to eat up. This [story] is filled to the brim with excitement and unexpected turns and Ario is delivering the goods.
Marvel.com: Between THUNDERBOLTS, upcoming issues of UNCANNY AVENGERS, and now this series, you’ve been drafted, so to speak, into Secret Empire on a pretty big level. What’s it been like, working on a Marvel event like this?
Jim Zub: Thunderbolts touched on Civil War II, so I got a taste for the kind of teamwork involved in these kind of line-wide events, but this time it’s much more extensive. I’m enjoying the challenge of carving out stories that stand on their own while also strengthening the overall vision of the event.
The Marvel Universe exists because of stories that share a common space, evolving with creative synergies between old and new ideas. Being part of that, contributing and collaborating to create something unexpected and entertaining, is a blast.
Survey the scene with Jim Zub and Ario Anindito on June 14 with SECRET EMPIRE: UNITED!