After a 10 year court battle between Neil Gaiman and Todd MacFarlane over the ownership of several characters, we are finally seeing the ramifications and fallout. Angela, a character created for the pages of Spawn (an Image comic), will make her debut in Marvel Comics in the final chapter of the Age of Ultron event currently playing out at newsstands and comic shops.
The lawsuit, started in 2002 by Gaiman, ended in a settlement at the start of 2012. It was clear that things were going in Gaiman’s favor as he won motion after motion and came out on top for several important rulings on other characters. In the end, the settlement left both men with 50% ownership of the Angela character. What we are seeing here is that it may have been a bit more specific than that. It could be surmised that Gaiman was awarded 100% ownership over the name and character, whereas MacFarlane got ownership over the look and design. This would explain the high-profile overhaul that Joe Quesada has given Angela.
Say what you will about Quesada as an editor, but the man was and will always be a great artist. I think the new design captures the character pretty well while dispensing with some of the goofier parts of her attire. After Ultron, she will be following Gaiman over to the Guardians of the Galaxy series with Brian Michael Bendis and art by the extremely talented Sara Pichelli.
Press Release after the jump
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