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DC Comics has canceled Northlanders, Brian Wood’s well-regarded Vertigo series set during the Viking Age.
The writer confirmed an earlier report by Bleeding Cool, announcing last night on his blog that the title will end with March’s Issue 50. “It has a very loyal fanbase but the trade sales just aren’t cutting the mustard,” Wood wrote.
“I’m not going to eulogize the series yet and start thanking everyone, since I have the next nine or ten months to do that,” he continued. “While this news sucks, I consider it a triumph for everyone responsible that our depressing, often cerebral comic book about Vikings and history is lasting FIFTY ISSUES. It feels appropriately epic, and the eventual seven volumes of the series will hopefully stay in print forever (or close to that).”
Debuting in December 2007, Northlanders is a bit of a storytelling oddity, utilizing self-contained arcs to tell tales set at different times and locations, and with different characters, during the same historical era — the late 8th century to the 11th century. Wood has worked with a range of artists on the book, including Becky Cloonan, Leandro Fernandez, Davide Gianfelice, Ryan Kelly, Vasilis Lolos, Dean Ormston, Fiona Staples and Danijel Zezelj. Massimo Carnevale has illustrated all of the covers. A one-shot with Marian Churchland and a nine-part story with Paul Azaceta still remain.
“Please, retailers, do not cut your orders, and please, readers, don’t cancel your subs,” Wood wrote. “No story is getting cut short, nothing will be left hanging.”
News of the Northlanders cancellation follows word that the writer’s exclusive agreement has ended with DC. However, Wood says, “I don’t think these two are connected.” He also alluded to being dropped from Supergirl only days before DC announced its line-wide relaunch, writing, “I was not given a role in the recent DCU reboot after all but I think its an exciting idea and wish everyone the best.”
Northlanders #41 goes on sale on June 15.