Rom: Space Knight is returning to Marvel Comics, at least for reprints of the character’s classic Marvel series from the 1970s and 1980s, after years of fan demand.
Marvel’s Rom comics, which were based on a Hasbro toyline, successfully incorporated the sci-fi hero into the Marvel Universe, including appearances by the character in other heroes’ series that haven’t yet been reprinted.
In this instance, Marvel will publish the classic Rom: Space Knight series in Rom: The Original Years Omnibus, with vol. 1 containing Rom # 1-29 as well as the character’s visiting appearance in Power Man and Iron Fist # 73.
The omnibus’ cover features a reproduction of the cover by renowned artist Frank Miller for Rom: Space Knight # 1 from 1979, as well as reproductions by Sal Buscema, Sal Miller, and George Pérez, as well as an alternative featuring artwork of Rom and the X-Men. Rom: Space Knight # 1 will also be reprinted in the Facsimile Edition.
Here is a gallery of the covers as well as some Buscema interior artwork:
(Image sourced from Marvel Comics)
After 75 issues and multiple annuals, the cult favourite series was cancelled in 1986. Rom made his final on-panel Marvel Universe appearance in 1994’s Incredible Hulk # 418, but only in his unarmored humanoid form because Marvel had lost the Hasbro licence.
The Space Knights themselves persisted in making appearances for many years, albeit under the slightly modified moniker of “Spaceknights,” which consisted of a modest 2000 series by the same name that included a character named “Artour,” who was indicated to be a license-friendly variation of Rom using a different pseudonym. Additionally, Venom Flash Thompson joined the Space Knight team in a 2015 television series named Venom: Space Knight.
After spending some time as a part of the generic Hasbro line from IDW Publishing, Rom finally returns to Marvel. Following this assertion, it’s unclear whether IDW, which last published a Rom comic in 2020, still has any licencing rights to the characters. The publisher’s licence with Hasbro for GI Joe and Transformers expired at the end of 2022, however it was previously stated that IDW will retain its rights to other Hasbro licences, including My Little Pony.
IDW had to undergo significant layoffs and reorganisation in order to avoid dissolution, therefore it’s probable that more changes to their licence have been made as a result.
Rom # 1 Facsimile Edition releases in September 2023, followed by Rom: The Original Years Omnibus Vol. 1 in January 2024.
View all of Marvel’s recently released August 2023 solicitations.
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