Category Archives: one more day
Most everyone involved in the comic book world, and those who are just well informed about pop culture, know about the big doings if DC Comics this month. The eight decade old comic book company is relaunching their entire line of comics, starting with all new #1 issues with mostly new characters and continuities. One of those most anticipated and in some cases dreaded is Superman.
In reviewing DC’s new 52 initiative, many of the titles looked impressive or at least interesting to me – except for one. Superman. Beyond the erasure of the Lois and Clark marriage (shades of One More Day), I found the previews simply visually unappealing. Now this isn’t the first time Superman has been rebooted, and it won’t be the last, but I don’t mind telling you I’m worried, just a little.
The advanced images for the new Superman were not promising. Either of them. Just for the record, we are getting two distinct Supermen, even though they are the same person. Action Comics will be exploring the early years of this new Superman while the Superman title will be telling current tales of the man of steel. Action will be featuring an angry and careless young man, almost Peter Parker-like, whose superhero costume consists of a red cape, a blue shirt with the red S shield on it, and jeans and boots. I hate this look.
Whenever I see it, especially the promotional image, I am reminded of the Earth-One Solomon Grundy, whose only wish was to fly like Superman and was given a cape and sent to the moon, where the lower gravity allowed him flight. That’s what I see whenever I see that shadowy image. It’s not a good memory. The current day version of Superman wears a bizarre segmented armor version of the original costume, with new red belt, and sans underwear-on-the-outside pants. It should be noted however, that at least this version, in the pages of the new Swamp Thing #1, acts like Superman. Just don’t get me started on the guy who shows up on the last page of Justice League #1.
The protagonist in the new Action Comics #1 is a brash young man, who while doing good, is dismissive of the police and is an arrogant grandstanding wisecracker. What’s most intriguing about what may be a polar opposite of what most folks may want in their Superman – is that the real Superman does shine through. It’s all there, baby, you can still see our hero underneath this kid’s immaturity.
This is the work of writer Grant Morrison. Often controversial, but always showing a passion and love for the comics of his youth (and mine as well), Morrison is notable for writing what I consider the best Superman in decades in the mini-series called All-Star Superman. Even in other comics like Final Crisis, Superman Beyond and JLA, he shows that he understands what Superman is all about, should be all about.
I have faith in Grant Morrison, despite this unorthodox representation of the man of steel, I have faith that we will eventually see this punk kid mature into the Superman we know and love. And as the author of “Supergods”, as well as the above-mentioned comics, I think Morrison is the man to do it. For those who doubt, have faith, Superman is coming, back.
After a bit of a late start I met up with Comic Widows co-horts Anthony and Ray. We began with a strategy meeting regarding some interviews planned for the day. And trust me, it was nowhere near as cool as it sounds, but we were taking it pretty seriously.
In the midst of our war council we also interviewed the young lady we were sharing the pressroom with at the time, Nicole Boose. We also learned she was with Marvel editorial and reviewing art portfolios at the con. Very cool lady, and pleasant informative interview.
As the pressroom overlooked the con floor we also did some costume spotting. From our vantage point we got to see quite a few good ones, and of course some bad ones as well. Among the former were several Marvel Girls in the Neal Adams green mini-skirt, a bright-green Riddler, a foam rubber Galactus, what might have been Nightwind from the Legion of Super-Heroes, Dr. Strange, the prerequisite dozen Stormtroopers that show up at every con, and a bald Robin. Also throughout the day there were many others spotted – a pair of Tomb Raiders, Zatanna, the cast of the new Indiana Jones flick, a baby Batgirl, a flat-chested Power Girl, and, ahem, a tranny Power Girl. And then there was also The Blob. Oh wait, that wasn’t a costume.
Then we hit the con floor and did a kinda noisy interview with Jared Barel of Loaded Barrel Studios. They do a startling and unique melding of photography and comic art that needs to be seen to be believed. They call it making ‘live-action graphic novels’ and it looks great. Check them out, it’s terrific stuff. I really did like their work, and really, it’s not just because they were giving out Twizzlers and Tootsie Rolls at their booth, but let’s be honest, that never hurts. Lessons to learned for other folks with booths at these cons.
After exploring the floor for a bit I ducked into the Crisis Now panel in the midst of questions and answers. Dan DiDio was in the house and mocking and ridiculing the characters we all love as if that was his job. Oh wait.
Several different things were addressed while I was there. When questioned on “Batman RIP,” DiDio repeatedly said in staccato fashion, “Batman dies!” then rescinded, “Batman doesn’t die, but he’s gonna wish he was dead.” Other items – the Milestone characters are not available for DC to use, but never say never. We will see Christopher Kent again. Apparently there is an unannounced Zatanna series coming at some point.
DiDio admitted that 2007 was not a year where everything was clicking as well as possible. And he added that it’s his job to make this year as great as possible. He also confessed that Steve Wacker leaving for Marvel was a huge loss for DC.
The Devil also said that Death of the New Gods was a celebration of Jack Kirby’s work on the New Gods. Wtf? Kill them to celebrate them? In answer to the next question, DiDio stated that Final Crisis will involve all Flashes. A fan asked “Even Bart?” and DiDio answered “All Flashes.” Just don’t kill Jay Garrick like you killed the Martian Manhunter, okay? Bastards. And during the lightning round he answered “Yes.” to the question of whether barry Allen was coming back.
Same room, a bit later, Cup O’ Joe with Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Quesada, standing room only, much like the DC panel before it. In attendance – (duh) Joey Q, Fred Van Lente, C.B. Cebulski, Tom Brevoort and another person whose name I didn’t catch – he didn’t talk much and ran the slide show though. The slide show announced Marvel Zombies 3 where the fan fave monsters invade the Marvel Universe proper, due in September.
Old news came with slides depicting the new Devil-Slayer series by horror novelist Brian Keene and Stephen King’s The Stand also starting in September. Mystery pics of Lady Bullseye followed (and of course quickly leaked to the internet) who Ed Brubaker is introducing in Daredevil. Nice art, but seemingly just a female version of Bullseye. Yawn.
Um, who brought the baby to a panel? Who brought a baby to a convention? Please just make it stop crying. Great parenting there, folks. Although he/she stopped crying, I wondered if the wonder-parents were still in the room when J.Q. dropped an F-bomb later on in the hour.
Then came, predictably, questions and answers. There will be more Squadron Supreme, written by Howard Chaykin, with a demented twist, and Greg Land on covers. And no, Land on covers is not the twist. Speaking of twisted, there’s been a big secret in the undercurrent of the Ultimate Universe, to be revealed in Ultimate Origins. Something major in their lives is a huge falsehood. Maybe the secret of why Ultimates 3 is so late will be revealed.
More “One More Day” backlash reared its ugly head and Joe explained that all of Spider-Man’s history is intact, save that he and Mary Jane didn’t get married on their wedding day. Something happened and that story just hasn’t been told yet. Joe says he’s seen it and it’s great. In response to another question, Tom B said that Peter and his Aunt May did in fact live at Avengers Tower. Some racy humor about May and Skrull Jarvis followed unfortunately. Either way, Joe and Tom certainly seem tired of doing OMD damage control; it’s in their faces.
My friend Ray hit Joe Q with a good one. He referenced the difference between two Jack Kirby reprint volumes, one from DC and one from Marvel – the difference is that DC paid the Kirby estate royalties and Marvel did not. Joe kinda dodged the question, saying that he doesn’t discuss Marvel policy in public. He added that Marvel is currently working with the Kirby estate and that should speak for itself.
Other items included that Baron Zemo was coming back, and a new Thunderbolts writer has been chosen but unannounced – could these be related and Fabian Nicieza is coming back? There is a Runaways film in development with Brian K. Vaughn involved. There are possible plans for the female Bucky from the Onslaught universe. The sequel to Marvels is coming in October. Whoever is left at the end of The Twelve will remain part of the present MU.
Quesada coined the term “Marvel lifestyle” for the fact that now Marvel does their own comics, movies and videogames – in response to a question about digital comics. I like it. Joe also claimed that he thought Spider-Man 3 was a pretty good movie. “Maybe one villain too many.” Wow, you said a mouthful, Joe.
At the close of the panel, the 18 carat gold Iron Man cellphone was given away. Over $1500 was raised for the Hero Initiative on the raffle for it. Great job, folks!
At this point, I was toast and had to go home, home to my super-cool Avengers glass that the Bride had gotten for me earlier in the day, and home to the Bride too, of course. But I’ll leave you with another quote, this one a bit dated, but it was shouted by a guy in a Nightwing t-shirt exiting the men’s room earlier this afternoon. “Hey, I found Ray Palmer!”
Coming in March to the CW on Saturday morning we have the new animated adventures of out favorite wall-crawler, “The Spectacular Spider-Man.” It should be noted that, much to Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Joe Quesada’s sinister glee, this Peter Parker will be a young Spider-Man, and decidedly unmarried.
I wonder if we’ll see Mephisto in this series?