Robot 6

Is Justice League #5 the first late book of DC’s New 52? [Updated]

During the promotional push for DC Comics’ “New 52″ relaunch, executives stressed steps were being taken to prevent late-shipping titles. We’ve already seen evidence of that commitment in the use of fill-in artists and some creative assists, but now it looks as if one of its titles is missing a beat — and it’s the biggest title the company has.

Justice League #5 was scheduled for release Jan. 18, according to the Previews catalog as well as the publisher’s own website, but recent information from Diamond Comic Distributors suggests it won’t make that date.

Issue 5 isn’t among the titles the distributor has scheduled to ship Wednesday … or the week after. Robot 6 emailed DC comment and a revised release date, but has yet to receive a response.

Although a late title clearly isn’t unheard of, this one is intriguing for two reasons: first, because it’s the flagship of DC’s “New 52,” and second, because the creators involved, writer Geoff Johns and artist Jim Lee, are also company executives who, at least indirectly, oversee the line editors whose responsibility it is to make sure books ship on time. It’s important to note the reason for the lateness can’t be connected to Johns or Lee; the blame could fall on any step of the production chain.

While DC hasn’t responded to our earlier inquiry, we did find a comment made by Co-Publisher Dan DiDio during the lead-up to New 52 regarding this this potential issue.

“[Timeliness is] more hard-line than in the past for several reasons, and one is that it’s the largest concern we’ve heard from retailers on a continual basis,” he said in an interview with Newsarama. “They’ve been concerned in the past about our inability to put out books on a consistent basis, especially the books that people are looking for.”

DiDio stressed that DC has a “contract with the retailers” and the fans for consistent releases, and admitted that sales have suffered when the publisher released late books in the past.

He specifically guaranteed “100 percent delivery,” which this delayed Justice League #5 would break from, saying, “There’s nothing more frustrating for me or any of the fans, I’m sure, to be excited about something then not be really sure when it’s coming out.”

Update (11:17 a.m. PT): A DC spokesperson responded that Justice League #5 is now scheduled for release on Jan. 25, just one week after its original date. The Diamond’s tentative shipping for Jan. 25 list doesn’t yet reflect that information.

Update (3: 38 p.m. PT): A DC representative has since tweeted: “We can confirm that Justice League #5 from @jimlee and @geoffjohns is indeed hitting shelves next week.”

Update (5:19 p.m. PT): DC has clarified its previous statement, tweeting: “Sorry for the confusion: Justice League 5 will hit shelves on January 25th.”



The question then becomes “Does JL stay a third week book, or does it’s schedule shift to the new reality?”

(Personally, I think it should just skip the entire month, which gives them pad for next time)

But, either way, it’s not a great example coming from the co-Publisher and CEO’s book, regardless of the reason or whoever is ultimately responsible


Correct me if I’m wrong .. but I recall reading, in the pre-New 52 hype-up, that ‘Justice League’ was the only title not expected to ship 100% monthly. Specifically, I think the article mentioned that the way DC would handle the already hectic schedules of Johns and Lee was by aiming for a release every four to six weeks?

a Jim Lee comic?? Late??? Noooo – not possible

… DC Universe Online isn’t going to play itself

Jim Lee having trouble sticking to a strict monthly schedule? Perish the thought!

Next you’ll tell me John Cassaday works slowly.

Jeremiah – I don’t think you’re correct on that one (no offense)

Rather, what was said was that they were going to lead the new 52 off with the first issue of Justice League because it was their marquee book written and drawn by their marquee talent. As such, it would ‘skip’ its normal release time (being the third week of the month) but subsequently ship regularly and monthly in that slot.

That meant a long break between 1 and 2, but it was at that point supposed to come out just as the others were.

Well, the time between the first and second issue was already 7-8 weeks.. They gave themselves some pad from the get go. Long term this does not bode well for Lee as a regular artist for this series if this somehow falls to him.. But considering how they’re handling deadline on other titles, it’s certainly possible the delay is the art. If he’s behind now, then #6 isn’t ready either.. And another pad of two months for the ‘fill in’ issues with Hu isn’t likely going to be enough time for Lee to get far enough ahead on another six issue arc. It’s a shame.. But if they can put egos aside, I’d recommend it’s time to get a consistent (and GREAT!) artist like Reis or Manke and switch them on to JL. Those guys put great art out every month, and keep deadlines… (Sorry Aquaman, but apparently we don’t take you seriously anyway, so we won’t mind DC putting your ace artist on the flagship title instead.. lol)

I love Lee’s art but I’ve been in the camp about deadline over artist since Hitch took 5 years to do 24 issues of Ultimates… It’s beautiful and consistent in retrospect ..and for the trade maybe they made more money in the long run.. Maybe not.. But initial sales took a big hit..

Um guys, just saw a very good reminder for why it’s probably okay it’s *one week* late- Jim Lee and his wife just had a baby. A baby! Please withhold your nerd rage

Didn’t Jim Lee’s wife have a baby in the last week or two? 5 months and 1 hiccup is perfectly fine with me.

Besides all the above, isn’t Jim Lee off the book after #6? I thought Gene Ha was taking over art.

Man Jim Lee must have about 30 babies – for all those delays on AS Batman

FYI – Diamond’s retailer-side site is reporting Jan 25th for Justice League #5. I imagine the public-side site doesn’t update as quickly.

Jeez what idiotic scumbags fans can be. This is the first delay in a long time. And it’s a one week delay, not one month. Cut them some gotdamn slack.

Odd though that yes he does have a lot of kids I think 5-7ish. But that’s neither here nor there. What’s frustrating is when I went to the dcnu retailer summit Jim said he was on issue 5. That was in June. What happened?

“Cut them some slack?” ….ninja please, DC should cut the fans some slack with the $3.99 price tag.

Don’t “ninja” me, buddy. If you don’t like the price, nobody’s forcing you to buy their books. If they continue with the delays, I will be the first to bash the hell out of them, but if it’s not and this is just a one time thing for the forseeable future, then I don’t see why we shouldn’t show some understanding.

Not that I doubt that Justice League might have slipped, I will point out that for some reason one issue of Supergirl (I think it was #3?) disappeared from the Diamond list. Not that JL and Supergirl are on the same level of attention, but there is precedent.

@Johnny stop being a brainless apologist. Lee has a long history of delays. If this were his first delay, you would not see reaction like this

Jimm Lee is back on issue #9

@dumdum I know Lee’s history with delays. But like the article says it may not be his or Geoff Johns’ fault. It’s their flagship title and I would guess it’s the main comic they would try to be always on time. I’m not brainless apologist nor do I blindly defend them, I’m simply showing understanding for the moment. Like I said if this does turn out to happen as often as it happened in the past, I would be more than happy to give them the crap they deserve. But not so far. Fans shouldn’t jump on any company’s case the second something like this happens.

It’s Jim Lee, we all expected a delay at SOME point. I’d much rather a delay than a fill-in issue, always.

I can’t believe that these creators aren’t robots! Argh! I want my money back.

From DC Comics official Twitter:
We can confirm that Justice League #5 from @jimlee and @geoffjohns is indeed hitting shelves next week.

So fans were once again complaining for nothing. Wow, what a surprise.

now we can go back to complaining about how mediocre this book has been

Yep, and I would once again say we’re not supposed to buy it if we don’t like it.

I don’t buy it. Don’t buy $3.99 books. Don’t buy gimmicks and events. Don’t buy stuff that features rushed art and mediocre writing

But I’m sure you’ll apologize for all of those things just like you do for Lee’s chronic tardy pencils

No, I will not. Anyone can say wtv they want, usually I’m glad fans stand by their opinions and can be passionate in their criticism. Sometimes though I’m annoyed with how overboard they go with it, and as in this case start to bitch their asses off with the news not even being true. So you can dislike Lee or the JL book all you want, but don’t tell people who defend something you don’t like that they are brainless apologists, cuz that way you don’t sound much different from the classless fans I talked about earlier.

THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING!!! This is proof positive that the entire New 52 concept is flawed and doomed to fail! Somebody crack the internet in half quick!!!

But yet you’ll complain and make snide comments about it on the internet, post after post, right?

Ahh, how the internet brings out the petulant child in so many seeemingly-reasonable people. Their fingers lightly touch the keyboard, and within seconds the brain switches to “emotional fraility of a 4-year-old”. It’s like frickin’ magic. Or demonic possession.

Carlos D’Anda now filling in for JL # 8… The Sky’s not falling.. Just now being drawn by others…

Jim’s drawing issues 1-6. Then Ha and D’Anda are both doing single issues stories with issues 7 and 8. Jim is back for the next multi-issue storyarc with issue 9. No big deal really. And I don’t think issue 5 missing a week- if it indeed does- is a big deal also since the Lee family had a baby.

Sorry to interrupt the conversation, but I’m reading quite a few of the new 52 right now and I need to drop a few, anyone mind giving their opinion on which 3 of these series are better?
The Flash, Captain Atom, Detective Comics, Justice League or Teen Titans?

People, you make it sound like it’s Battlechaser’s #10. It’s probably one week, maybe two.

And… from DC Comics official Twitter:

Sorry for the confusion: Justice League 5 will hit shelves on January 25th.

So the first late book is from 2 of the people running DC…. theres irony for you. So the double standard is still in affect. Sad really.

Lee also has to draw issue #6. If that is late I’ll be cancelling this title. Hell, I may just cancel it even if it isn’t late. Johns writing has gotten so decompressed it ain’t funny. We’re lucky to get 2 scenes an issue. Its starting to piss me off. On top of that we are getting majorly short changed to the extent I feel like I’m reading a Marvel book $4 for a 20 page comic.

Bottom line – Its a snails pace story, that is way to expensive.

Being one week late usually has nothing to do with the artist and is some sort of printing snafu.

@Duder – if your comment was pointed towards me – yes, I will complain about fan reactions like that. I usually don’t waste my time to acknowledge the overblown internet bashing by any type of fandom but sometimes stuff like this get under my skin. So they have a one-week delay and automatically let’s jump on their throats. Well sorry, I’m not cool with that. Imo a person who considers himself a fan would show at least a little understanding and not start to bitch his ass off at the very second something like this happens. Lee has a history with delays, but that doesn’t mean this is the case here. I think it’s wrong to start trashing these people whenever we see fit. That’s the final thing I say about this situation.

One week late is no big deal, I don’t think, but what it REALLY says to me is – “If Jim Lee is still drawing THIS issue after all that lead time, then how late is #6 going to be?”

I’d say that maybe Lee is taking the extra time to learn to draw more than one male face and one female face, if he hadn’t been doing that very thing for the last 20+ years. I swear, if it wasn’t for the costumes and hairstyles you could not tell any of the male characters apart aside from Cyborg. So I guess he does an african-american face too. That’s three. But his asians and anglos and hispanics are all drawn with the same face and he draws square jaws for everyone.

Not to mention pretty much identical physiques as well. The Flash should not look as buff as Superman. Nor should Batman, but to a lesser degree. The Flash needs to look like he can MOVE. Not like he is in the running for the Mr. Universe title. And Batman needs flexibility. The kind that that much muscle does not allow.

Using the same basic model so much tells me that Jim Lee got real lazy on his art skills a long time ago and is just coasting by rather than trying to refine his talent. He looks to have lost his artistic discipline. Something that his missing so many deadlines over the years also just screams out to me. Yes, he is talented. Yes, his stuff does look good in general. But that is what he is coasting on. I challenge him to either evolve his skills or get out of the way for artists who will.

and petulant fanboys stomp their little feet yet again…..

Actually – “Dave” – blindly defending creators when they do careless stuff would make you more of a fanboy than anyone

You want great looking art (according to you), each character face to look unique, great sequentially flowing panels, detailed action scenes and backgrounds (but not too detailed, because OMG that’s soooooo 90s), new storylines that don’t contradict or remotely copy decades and decades of previous stories, advance the characters at the same time as keeping them the same, AND you want it every 4 weeks like clockwork, thinking that there’s some imaginary endless supply of “said artist” that can do this AND wants to do this for an audience just like YOU?

Wow. Get over yourselves.

zram – yeah, why should professionals be expected to deliver a quality product

ps – I loved Lee’s art on AS Batman – but the thing about all his faces and physiques looking the same is spot on

One week late isn’t bad, probably a printing error. It’s definitely not stopping me from getting in on the 25th.

dumdum – read my post again, dumdum. Completely missed the point, unsurprisingly. It’s not about the quality. It’s not even about the artists. I’m done with this crap.

I’m reading and loving The Flash, Captain Atom, and Justice League. I never read Detective, and Teen Titans just wasn’t my cup of tea.
BTW, I get my comics once a month via Internet service, so a one week delay means nothing to me.

Nate: Keep the Flash. Keep Teen Titans. The last bit is a toss up between Justice League and Detective. I love Justice League, but the reaction has been…lukewarm from other fans. If you feel the same way, I see no reason to keep it.

Chris McFeely: I don’t know much about the production side of comics (and no one else posting in this does either), but…as a guess? I’d say that if the delay fell on Jim OR Geoff, it’d be much longer than a week. If Jim were still pencilling pages that would mean the inker, colorists, and letterers still had to do their jobs and while I’m sure they’re talented people, I don’t think they’re THAT fast.

zram: Co-signed.

The blame could fall on any step of the production chain-but of course. It must be the letterer! Jim Lee will be late to his own funeral…

Dropped. ill just download it.

@SageShini and @Chris B thanks for the help, I’m definitley keeping Flash and Captain Atom, you guys read any of the Batman series, Nightwing and Action Comics? ‘Cause I’m reading those too, could use some help deciding too haha.

And I gotta agree with Sageshini, I don’t think Johns or Lee is at fault for the delay, someone farther down the production line probably skrewed up.

@dumdum “DC Universe Online isn’t going to play itself”

Can’t… Stop… Laughing…

Oh, thank you. I needed that.

All this complaining isn’t gonna help the process of making comics much. Jim lee is a very busy Man yet between hid responsiblies he is busting his ass on justice league. Oh well life goes on if u can’t wait on Jim & Geoff then find something else to read winners!

Scott Clark would be my choice after #6….Flashpoint Wonderman #1 had absolutely amazing art in my opinion.

Number 6 is now late also!!!! WTF guys!! Pull your heads out! You charge 4 dollars for a few pages of comic and can’t even get them out on time.

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