Marvel Comics was originally going to advertise the Secret Empire comic book series on TV, but some negative public reaction to the very existence of the storyline — despite having a silver lining, according to Marvel EIC Axel Alonso — seems to have scuppered that plan, as well as various other activities in renaming and rebranding a ton of stores with Hydra livery.
But that media buy may well be spent on a related project.
The Generations books, as promoted to retailers at the Marvel presentation at the Diamond Retailer Lunch earlier today at San Diego Comic-Con, does indeed emerge from the Secret Empire storyline. Described to Bleeding Cool as coming out of "a unique point in Secret Empire (possibly with the cosmic cube and perhaps the Red Skull) that creates a Twilight Zone-type Vanishing Point where newer heroes can interact with their classic counterparts."
They also showed retailers a promotional video of Generations, which will be edited down to 30 seconds and is intended by Marvel Comics to be aired as a TV commercial.
And although the existence of the books, seeing classic characters standing alongside their modern day equivalents, is tied in deeply with Secret Empire continuity, people who just pick one up won't even see that aspect of the story, The intention is that the Generations books will be perennial evergreen products; one-shots that can continue to sell to people intrigued by either the classic or the modern versions of these characters.