X-POSITION: Phoenix, Upstarts & More Tear Up Bowers & Sims' "X-Men '92"
Although it seems like DC’s big relaunch announcement came out an eternity ago, it actually took the publisher less than two weeks to roll out the 52 titles and their creative teams for the big relaunch/reboot/overhaul coming in September. Now that the cats are out of their respective bags, I thought I’d see where various creators and characters will land after the reboot.
So I went back through DC’s August solicitations to see who was writing or drawing what, and tried to map everyone to their post-relaunch project — if they had one. However, looking at DC’s August solicitations, there seem to be several fill-in issues, so where appropriate I tried to map the most recent ongoing creative teams to their new projects (for instance, I consider Gail Simone and Jesus Saiz the regular creative team for Birds of Prey, even if they aren’t doing the last two issues before September hits). Keep in mind that I just went through the ongoing series and skipped over all the miniseries … of which there are a lot, what with Flashpoint winding up in August.
It’s also worth noting that although several creators didn’t appear in the “big 52″ announcements, that doesn’t mean their tenure with DC is necessarily over — some, like Frazer Irving, have said they have future projects that haven’t been announced. So I tried to note where creators have talked publicly about their post-relaunch plans with DC (or lack thereof, as the case may be). The same could probably be said for some of DC’s characters as well. Or, as Gail Simone said on Twitter: “Again, September is NOT THE END. There’s still plans for characters that we haven’t seen yet.”
So let’s get to it ….
Green Lantern titles: There is no Green Lantern title in August. July’s issue, #67, wraps up “War of the Green Lanterns” and is by Geoff Johns, Doug Mahnke and Christiam Almy — the same guys working on Green Lantern #1. Green Lantern Corps #63 is by Tony Bedard and Tyler Kirkham, while Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors #13 is by Peter J. Tomasi and Fernando Pasarin. The latter creative team takes over Green Lantern Corps in September, while the former moves to Green Lantern: New Guardians. As Sean Collins pointed out last week, not a lot of change here in terms of creative teams, although the GL books do have a new sister book in the previously announced Red Lanterns title by Peter Milligan and Ed Benes.
Booster Gold: Looks like issue #47 is the last one, which ties into Flashpoint. Dan Jurgens is writing Justice League International #1, starring Booster Gold, with artist Aaron Lopresti. And Jurgens is drawing the J.T. Krul-written Green Arrow.
Justice League of America: The book will drop “of America” from the title in September, as Geoff Johns and Jim Lee take over the series from James Robinson and … I guess the last regular artist was Brett Booth? Booth moves to Teen Titans, while James Robinson doesn’t appear anywhere on the big list of 52 titles. Which is … odd.
Between this, GL and Aquaman (with artist Ivan Reis), DC Chief Creative Officer Johns is tied with Teen Titans/Red Hood and the Outlaws/Superboy scribe Scott Lobdell for writing the most titles for DC come September.
Superman titles: Lots of changes here … Paul Cornell and Kenneth Rocafort wrap up the “Reign of the Doomsdays” storyline in Action Comics in September. Cornell moves on to Stormwatch and Demon Knights, while Rocafort moves to Red Hood and the Outlaws. The book’s previous artist, Pete Woods, is on Legion Lost. Meanwhile, Grant Morrison and Rags Morales take over Action Comics.
The “Grounded” storyline in Superman ends with August’s issue #714, by J. Michael Straczynski, Chris Roberson, Allan Goldman and Eber Ferreira. Straczynski’s not tapped to write any of the September titles, which isn’t surprising, based on the fact that he stepped away from monthly comics to work on the sequel to Superman: Earth One — another question entirely. In any event, the man they brought on to finish up “Grounded,” Roberson, isn’t on the list either. Roberson tweeted last week, “I’ve laid off alcohol & nicotine after Heroes, but I’m treating myself to a cigarette and beer, marking the end of my brief stay in the DCU.” He’s still writing iZombie for Vertigo. Goldman also isn’t on the list, while the book’s regular artist, Eddy Barrows, moves to Nightwing. George Pérez and Jesus Merino relaunch the the book in September as Superman: The Man of Tomorrow.
Two issues of Superboy arrive in August, by Jeff Lemire and a trio of artists. Lemire moves on from the title and will be writing Frankenstein and Animal Man in September, while Lobdell takes over writing Superboy with artist R.B. Silva. Artist Pier Gallo doesn’t appear to be doing anything for DC in September.
Supergirl‘s final creative team before the reboot, Kelly Sue DeConnick and Chriscross, aren’t working on any of the September books, although DeConnick did note that she was approached to pitch to them.
Most recently Superman/Batman has featured the work of Cullen Bunn and Chriscross, neither of whom appears on the big list o’ 52, with Joshua Hale Fialkov’s three-parter appearing in the final issues this summer. Fialkov will be writing I, Vampire in September.
The Bat-titles: Batman Incorporated goes on hiatus after August, but DC has announced that it will be back as a maxi-series next year. Morrison, as noted above, goes to Action Comics. The Bat titles themselves stay fairly consistent — Tony Daniel will continue to write and draw one of them as he moves from Batman to Detective Comics; writer Scott Snyder moves from Detective Comics to work with former Spawn artist Greg Capullo on Batman; and David Finch will continue to write Batman: The Dark Knight (a series he once drew as well) for artist Jay Fabok, who is slated to take over art chores with July’s pre-relaunch-resolicited issue #4. The only creators from those books pre-relaunch who don’t appear on the big list of 52 books are Jock and Francesco Francavilla, although Jock is apparently still doing Batman-related covers, while Francavilla will do “special fill-ins” for Snyder’s other writing project, Swamp Thing. Daniel has another project as well — The Savage Hawkman, with artist Phillip Tan.
Tomasi is also listed as the writer for Batman & Robin, a book he was announced as the regular writer for after Morrison left. However, since then the book has actually been written by several folks, including Judd Winick, David Hine and Cornell. Hine’s name doesn’t appear on the relaunch list. Winick and artist Guillem March, who worked together on B&R, will team up on Catwoman in September. Winick is also writing Batwing with Ben Oliver on art.
The last few issues of Batgirl have been by Bryan Q. Miller and Dustin Nguyen, while Pere Pérez is the artist for the last three issues before the relaunch. None of them are listed as creators on the 52 titles in September. In responding to a question on Twitter, Bryan Q. Miller said: “RT Anything new on the horizon for you at DC? @TreyKrimsin Maybe – but nothing in any way immediate.” The new Batgirl creative team is Gail Simone, Ardian Syaf and Vicente Cifuentes, with Barbara Gordon stepping back into the costume.
Red Robin ends in August with an issue that has Tim going after his dad’s killer, Captain Boomerang, since CB is back from the dead. Writer Fabian Niceiza is working on Legion Lost in September. The artist for the last arc, Marcus To, isn’t doing anything in September, while the book’s previous artist, Freddie Williams, is working on Captain Atom with Krul. Red Robin will appear in Teen Titans come September.
The characters from Gotham City Sirens — Catwoman, Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn — seem to have scattered into the wind; Catwoman has her own book in September, while Poison Ivy appears to be in Birds of Prey and Harley Quinn is heading to the Suicide Squad. Creators Peter Calloway and Andres Guinaldo aren’t on any books in September.
And speaking of Birds of Prey, Simone’s last issue is #13, as the July and August installments are by writer Marc Andreyko and Billy Tucci — neither of whom is working on September’s books. Simone will move on to Batgirl, as noted above, as well as Firestorm, which she’s co-writing with Ethan Van Sciver. Jesus Saiz, who took a break from the book after issue #13, returns to BoP for the relaunch in September.
So what happens to Batman Beyond? Honestly, I’m not sure. It isn’t listed as one of the 52 titles, but CBR’s interview with Adam Beechen last week seemed to indicate the book isn’t going away:
I do know what our next arc is going to be, but I can’t talk about it yet. I’m in the process of plotting it out, and I even know what the next arc after that will be as well as our next “Legends of the Dark Knight” issue. We’re in a pretty good place about what’s ahead of us, and if all goes according to plan, we’re pretty well set for the next bit of time. And we’re going to keep the team intact as long as we can and keep trying to crank out good stuff.
It’s worth noting that there’s also a Superman Beyond #0 in August; it’s listed as a one-shot, but c’mon, a zero issue in August? How can there not be a first issue in its future?
Wonder Woman: The somewhat-controversial “Odyssey” arc, which put Wonder Woman in pants, wraps up in August by Straczynski, Phil Hester, Don Kramer and Wayne Faucher. None of these four is listed as a creator on any of September’s books. Wonder Woman #1 will be by Doctor 13: Architecture & Morality collaborators Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang.
Hester was brought onto the book at the same time Roberson came onto Superman, when Straczynski decided to step away from monthly comics. And while neither of them appears to be doing anything in September, Hester said on Twitter that “there are a lot of moving parts here,” and “So much in motion right now, but it is appreciated” when fans asked about his involvement, or lack thereof.
Adventure Comics and Legion of Super-Heroes: Paul Levitz will continue to chronicle the tales of the Legion, while Fabian Nicieza will write a Legion Lost series. Adventure appears to be gone. As for Adventure artist Phil Jimenez, a DC-exclusive creator, he tweeted, “Hey, comic readers — thanks for all the inquiries! I’m not a part of the big DCU relaunch, but I’ve got a few cool tricks up my sleeve!” followed by “Fun stuff! Hopefully announced by SDCC!” And artist Yildiray Cinar is working on the previously mentioned Firestorm book, as Francis Portela takes over Legion of Super-Heroes.
Jonah Hex: Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Grey will continue to tell the tales of the ugliest bounty hunter in the west in All-Star Western. They’re joined by artist Moritat.
Green Arrow: J.T. Krul will continue to write Green Arrow, joined by artist Dan Jurgens. Artist Diogenes Neves moves to Demon Knights, written by Cornell.
Secret Six: Simone has confirmed that issue #36 is indeed the last, as the characters Deadshot and King Shark move on to the new Suicide Squad book. Artist J. Calafiore is not listed as working on any of the 52 titles.
Zatanna: According to Paul Dini on his LiveJournal: “A few folks have asked me about the future of the Zatanna book at DC. I don’t know what plans DC has for it after this August, though I can confirm my last issue is the current one, #13.” Issue #13 came out in May. Solicitations for issues #14 and #15 list Dini as the writer, while Beechen is listed as the writer for August’s issue #16. So … I’m not sure what that means.
Responding to a question about the relaunch, Zatanna artist Jamal Igle tweeted, “I wasn’t invited to participate.” The character will appear in Justice League Dark.
Justice Society and Power Girl: I guess this explains why the description for the new Mister Terrific title didn’t reference the Justice Society. Apparently issue #54, by Marc Guggenheim and Jerry Ordway, will be the last. Neither Guggenheim nor Ordway was listed as working on any of the 52 titles, although artist Tom Derenick, who drew the recent issues #51-53, will team with Ivan Brandon on Sgt. Rock and the Men of War.
Power Girl, meanwhile, ends with August’s #27 by Matthew Sturges and Hendry Prasetya, neither of whom is listed as working on any of the 52 titles. The series’ previous writer, Winick, is working on Batwing and Catwoman, as noted above, while artist Sami Basri is working on Voodoo with Ron Marz.
Honestly, I was half-expecting a round of Justice Society titles to be announced at some point — Justice Society, Power Girl, maybe Star Girl or Starman. Maybe they’ll be tapped as mid-season replacements? On the other hand, the description of the Morrison/Morales Action Comics relaunch offered by DC’s The Source blog — “This momentous first issue will set in motion the history of the DC Universe as Superman defends a world that doesn’t trust their first Super Hero” — would appear to preclude the existence of a team full of World War II-era heroes that predates Superman’s generation.
Teen Titans and Titans: Teen Titans writer J.T. Krul is penning two books come September, Captain Atom and Green Arrow. But I’m not seeing Nicola Scott or Doug Hazlewood on anything, though. That can’t be right; someone at DC get on that, stat.
Titans writer Eric Wallace is working on Mister Terrific; Fabrizio Fiorentino isn’t on anything. Deathstroke gets his own title in September, while Arsenal will join Red Hood and Starfire in Red Hood and the Outlaws.
T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents: I was kind of wondering about the long-term future of this one even before the reboot. Which is too bad, as it’s also one I really enjoyed. Writer Nick Spencer is exclusive to Marvel now, so his name wouldn’t be on any other DC book, while the regular art team of Cafu and BIT will work on Grifter. Recent issues have featured art by Mike Grell and Nick Dragotta, who aren’t listed on any of September’s books.
Xombi: With John Rozum working on the new Static Shock series, I would have assumed that was it for Xombi. But someone asked about it on his blog, and he responded: “… I still can’t comment one way or another. Check back periodically, but in the meantime, please take a few minutes to write a letter to the powers that be at DC about what you think about Xombi and send it to them via snail mail. It has an impact. It’s what led to the current run of Xombi in the first place.”
At the very least, maybe they’d let Rozum and artist Frazer Irving wrap up the series in the new anthology title. Speaking of Irving, he tweeted: “For all interested parties, I do have a post-relaunch DC gig but it’s a secret at the mo And Gutsville still needs finishing…” More Gutsville is a plus for sure.
Flash: Flash‘s current run ended in May with issue #12 by Johns and Francis Manapul. The title will return in September sans Johns and with Manapul and Brian Buccellato sharing art and writing duties.
So there you have it, DC’s September books through the filter of their previous line-ups … and I still didn’t hit every single book that’ll come out in September. And based on some of the comments from various creators about additional projects beyond the 52, now I’d just really like to see what DC’s October looks like …
In the meantime, what September books are you going to get? Head over to CBR and take the survey!