On Mr. Sean T. Collin's blog he had a blurb about an interview with new Marvel Editor in Cheif Axel Alonso, and I made a comment on the post that I thought was worth sharing here:
Ah, the "It has to count" line of thought. The one that prevents us from ever really deviating from a standard norm for our heroes for too long. Yes, we had Dark Reign, where the world was turned upside-down. However, didn't things reset to just how they were in the 2000s after this 9-years-or-so line of time where the Avengers ended, heroes fought, aliens invaded, and Osborn ruled the U.S.? We are pretty much back to exactly how we were at the start. It's okay, it just means that even when risks are taken with characters the odds are good they will just end up back as they originally were. Hell, they got rid of Spider-Man's multiple-decade long marriage to Mary Jane just to make him more like the young fellow he was at the start of his adventures.
Maybe this is why I sometimes prefer the out-of-continuity stories, because I know people can take more risks, and anything truly can happen because the story doesn't "count" and things that would never happen in the "normal" universe can occur. Alonso mentions the Punisher VS. The Marvel Universe comic as one of their excursions into "out-of-continuity" tales, and I especially liked that story. Here's hoping we actually have more tales that don't have to "count" to be enjoyed.