Robot 6

13 years later, Chase finally gets collected

In a blog post titled simply “Finally!,” J.H. Williams III notes the inclusion in DC Comics’ solicitations for November a listing for a trade paperback for Chase, the woefully short-lived 1998 series he created with D. Curtis Johnson.

The title came out of the same experimental era at the publisher that produced such comics Young Heroes in Love, Aztek: The Ultimate Man and Hourman, and introduced us to Cameron Chase, a cynical, cigarette-smoking agent with the newly introduced Department of Extranormal Operations.

I’ve written before about my love for Chase, which was a wonderful looking glass into the workings of the DC Universe, with Cameron providing an outsider perspective on the actions and lives of superheroes.  She had ties to a costumed character and frequently interacted with the capes-and-tights set — from Batman and Nightwing to Alan Scott and Klarion the Witchboy — but she wasn’t part of that world. Well, not that she’d admit.

Cameron and the DEO far outlived Chase, which unfortunately ended with its tenth issue, part of DC’s “One Million” event. The character had a prominent role a decade later in Manhunter, while the Department of Extranormal Operations, also created by Williams and Johnson, has become a fixture of the DC Universe, even appearing in the Green Lantern movie.

Chase was one of those series that came out at time when almost everything new from DC was getting the axe within a year due to slow sales,” Williams writes on his blog. “Ironically, as we were getting chopped, a groundswell buzz was happening around what we were doing, but unfortunately not in time to save the series. In all the years since then, Chase The Series had garnered a cult status, becoming almost more popular after its death than when it was alive.”

As Williams’ “Finally!” title suggests, this is the first time Chase has been collected; I tracked down the full run several years back at Mid-Ohio Con, where all 10 issues were bagged together for a decent price. The 352-page trade paperback goes well beyond that, though, collecting Batman #550 (Cameron Chase’s first appearance), plus a bunch of stories from the Secret Files line. It arrives in stores on Dec. 21.

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Comments

9 Comments

I like that DC is collecting this, but I LOVE that they’re doing these really fat collections (one-volume Sinestro Corps, No Man’s Land re-issues).

Funny, just read 1 and 2 yesterday.
Well, I wasn’t exactly thrilled.

Average stuff. Just like Aztek.

George Bush (not that one)

August 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm

Average is great after reading so much dreck. The standards in comics are pretty low.

Already pre-ordered this book a couple of months ago. I came to love Chase through the late, great Manhunter series.

I’ve been tracking down the individual issues in cheap bins, and will continue to do so, but I’ll also get this.

This book may well seem average now… but at the time this was the way books would look in the future in style and story. This book (as with most of the D-list titles at the time Aztek,Ressurection Man;Hourman;Manhunter this list does go on) was a gem in the midst of the regular stuff that DC and Marvel and Image was putting out at the time….

Here is hoping this collection sells well enough that DC looks at this title as one of the future replacement for the in evitable stumbles any of the New52 will have.

Wish she and Jack Cross at least made a cameo or a guest appearance on Justice League Unlimited, they would’ve been perfect for that. Which actors do any of you think would make good voices for them?

The 90’s produced some jems didn’t they? The few series you mentioned are great examples.

So hearing this is great news – its just a shame I spent $8 a few months back for the DC presents trade that included 4 issues.

The best part about this collection is that they’re throwing everything in. The 10 Chase issues are tough enough to track down, but each of those Secret Files? Those are even trickier. I’ve always been partial to the JSA story about how long it takes for news to spread among superheroes.

And for all the mention of Cameron appearing in other issues, don’t overlook the solicits for November’s Batwoman #3:
Horror! Batwoman faces the terrifying villain stalking Gotham City’s children. Can she defeat the gruesome monster in time to save the city’s most innocent victims? Intrigue! Kate Kane unearths a ghost she has tried hard to bury, even as the D.E.O. closes in on Batwoman. Can Kate outrun her past and Cameron Chase? Romance! Kate’s relationship with Detective Maggie Sawyer continues to evolve. But will Kate’s nocturnal activities cause a rift between the two?

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