I'm sensing a pattern here. What does it mean that a full SEVEN titles coming in May feature if not headline characters who are sons or daughters of existing Marvel characters? To be specific:
Skaar son of Hulk (Incredible Hulk)
Hiro-Kala, son of Hulk (Realm of Kings: Son of Hulk)
She-Hulk, daughter of Hulk and Thundra (Fall of the Hulks: The Savage She-Hulks)
Daken, son of Wolverine (Dark Wolverine)
Secret Warriors, progeny of Mr. Hyde, Ares, Dr. Druid, Griffin, Phantom Rider, Absorbing Man, and Gateway (Secret Warriors)
Spider-Girl, daughter of Spider-Man (Spectacular Spider-Girl)
And, of course, there's this one:
This isn't even counting the relatively recent creations of Young Avengers (and Melter of the Young Masters), X-23, Runaways, Captain Marvel(s), Valeria Richards, and most recent of all, the villains appearing in Avengers #1 (2010).
But, why? Has Marvel's backlog of characters led to the repetition of themes and brands to the point where legacy characters are inevitable, maybe even necessary? Have all our stories become exhausted so we need, in a literal and literary sense, some "new blood?" Is it a reflection on the current readership whose median age has shifted into being parents themselves? Is it a reflection on the current creative leadership who are a few generations removed from original creators and status quo?
Regardless of the reasoning for it, I'd argue that it is becoming so prevalent that we are entering, if not already have entered, a paradigm shift. I'd imagine this trend will continue, but there are implications that should be considered. Not only is this "not a new idea" anymore, but it may force a change in nature of the Marvel universe as a whole, the types of stories they can tell, and the kind of readership they will attract.
I'm sure I even forgot a few "progeny" characters that have appeared recently and/or are coming down the publishing pipe. Leave me a comment with any I failed to mention!