Friday, July 31, 2009

SDCC 2009: Superboy by Francis Manapul

Here's my last pieces from the con, from Francis Manapul (former artist on LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES and upcoming artist on ADVENTURE COMICS starring Superboy). I loved Manapul's LEGION, but he's taken his art one step further with a watercolor type style on ADVENTURE COMICS. It perfectly suits Smallville's placid surrounding, "sort of a Norman Rockwell feeling," as Francis described.

I got two pieces from Manapul. The first is a quick sketch at the DC booth (with Krypto!), and the second is a more elaborate piece he did at his booth in Artist's Alley.

This ADVENTURE COMICS is going to be one beautiful book... and psst, Titans fans, expect to see Cassie, Bart and Tim within the first 4 issues. OK, so this Superboy commission is my favorite piece of the entire con!


SDCC 2009: Ravager by Josh Middleton

I love Josh Middleton's stuff. And he's almost impossible to nail down for a commission, since he works so meticulously. My patience paid off (after a few hours of waiting...) and I nabbed this Ravager by Josh at the Hero Initiative booth. Since he helped co-create the comic version of X-23, I thought Rose would be a good subject for him. After all, Ravager is sorta the "X-23 of the Teen Titans," right?


SDCC 2009: Deathstroke by Mike Huddleson

Mike Huddleson was the regular artist on DEATHSTROKE for the last 5 or 6 issues. They tried to revamp the title a bit, and even changed Slade's costume and de-aged him. I asked Huddleson to give me the "classic" Deathstroke he never really had a chance to draw. Nice piece, huh?


SDCC 2009: Team Titans by Kerry Gammill

I caught up with Kerry Gammill at the Vanguard booth, and was able to get a few commissions from him. Kerry was a go-to "fill-in" guy during the Titans Hunt saga, and he drew one of the very first appearances of the Team Titans, and also drew they Who's Who page. Gammill was supposed to be the regular artist on TEAM TITANS, but then Kevin Maguire stepped in and took over. Gammill even drew the first 6 or so pages of TEAM TITANS #1!

Anyway, I already had Kerry draw me Mirage at the New York Comic-Con, so now it's my mission to have him draw all the Team Titans. Here's Redwing, Terra and Nightrider.


SDCC 2009: Beast Boy by Jason Howard

Here's a commission from Jason Howard, who is currently drawing the excellent ASTOUNDING WOLFMAN book from Image. Since it featured a transforming creature, I thought Beast Boy would be a good character for Jason. Looks like I guessed correctly!


SCDD 2009: Lilith and Donna by Jamie McKelvie

Here's a commission from PHONOGRAM artist Jamie McKelvie. The Image comic is about a group on British club kids, so I thought .... how about Lilith and Donna circa 1971? After all, Lilith was a go-go dancer at the Canary Lounge. right?


SDCC 2009: Donna Troy by Terry Dodson

I was lucky enough to catch Terry Dodson doing some quick sketches. I had him draw Donna Troy, who he has recently drawn in WONDER WOMAN. And trivia: Terry also drew Donna during the last few issues of TEAM TITANS when he was just starting in the industry. Man, I love Dodson's stuff. This is a great quick sketch!


SDCC 2009: Robin by Cameron Stewart

I caught Cameron Stewart at the DC Booth, and he did this quick Robin sketch.


SDCC 2009: Cyborg by Kaare Andrews

I really love Kaare Andrews' stuff. It's very high-energy and animated. Kaare donated his time at the Hero Initiative booth to raise money for the charity, and I had him do a Cyborg commission. He really did a great job on this one.


SDCC 2009: Kid Eternity by Andy Suriano

Here's a commission from Image artist, Andy Suriano. Andy also drew a few issues of BRAVE AND THE BOLD (the series based on the cartoon). There was an issue he drew with Kid Eternity, and Andy wanted to draw him again ... but the Grant Morrison version of the character. This is one of my favorites from the show!


SDCC 2009: Ravager by Sean Galloway

Here's a Ravager sketch from Sean "Cheeks" Galloway, who is currently drawing TEEN TITANS in WEDNESDAY COMICS.


SDCC 2009: Risk by Norm Rapmund

I caught Norm Rapmund in Artist's Alley. he inked the latter half of Dan Jurgens' TEEN TITANS, so I had him draw Risk. He really liked the way this one came out!


SDCC 2009: Argent by Dan Jurgens

Now come the sketches. I caught Dan Jurgens at the Hero Initiatiive Booth, where he was doing commissions for charity. I had him draw my favorite Titan from his run: Argent. Turned out pretty nice!


Monday, July 27, 2009

SDCC 2009: DCU in Animation (and Nightwing News!)

OK, so I saw the sneak peek of GREEN LANTERN: FIRST FLIGHT. It's decent, but a little flat compared to WONDER WOMAN and SUPERMAN: DOOMSDAY. It didn't have the charm or spark of either of those movies.

But best news? Scroll down for some information about Nightwing in animation.....

ENI reports: " The writer, Alan Burnett, had several ideas for how to approach this origin of Green Lantern but many of the stories simply got too complicated. He decided to take it down to a basic police story, in the style of Training Day. Sinestro is assigned Green Lantern to break in as a rookie partner and he tries to sway him to his twisted vision of the Guardians and the Corps. It's that dynamic that drive the plot of the movie."

They also reports: "Superman/Batman - Public Enemies, is the next DCU animated feature. September 29, 2009, it will be available on Blue-Ray, DVD and On Demand. Kevin Conroy is the voice of Batman and Tim Daily is Superman. Power Girl will be in this feature, in one of her few animated appearances. Clancy Brown plays Lex Luthor."

They screened some footage from that one, and it looks pretty good! They did a nice job of evoking Ed
Ed McGuiness' art style. Also, Starfire is in this one, as part of Captain Atom's takedown team.

Update: Here an image of animated Starfire from CBR:

A fan asked about the possibility of a Nightwing animated feature, and "
Bruce TImm says it's even money that there will be Nightwing in the DC animated future."



Sunday, July 26, 2009

SDCC 2009: Geoff Johns on All Flash

And this weekend DC revealed he’s also writing a “Flash” ongoing series after “Flash: Rebirth” and “Blackest Night: Flash” are complete. It should also be noted that in conjunction with the most recent announcement, DC announced Sterling Gates, Johns’ long-time assistant who is now writing “Supergirl,” will be working on a “Kid Flash” ongoing, as well. No artist was named for either project.

CBR News: Geoff, speedster fans must be reveling in all this Flash news. On top of all your other projects, now you’re writing a “Flash” ongoing too.

Geoff Johns: Yes, It’s very exciting. I can’t say much just yet but I’m writing the “Flash” monthly, and it will come out after “Blackest Night: Flash” and “Kid Flash” by Sterling Gates will come on the scene after that. We’re going to be working in unison like Pete [Tomasi] and I work on “Green Lantern” and “Green Lantern Corps.”

We’re going to slowly dive into the Flash universe. And no one else knows this yet but the title of the first arc in the “Flash” monthly, ‘The Dastardly Deaths of the Rogues.’

Can you say whether it will feature Barry or Wally?

I don’t want to spoil “The Flash: Rebirth,” but all the Flashes in the Flash Universe will be major players in both Flash books.

I love working on The Flash. He’s my favorite character. And working on the movie and working on the comic at the same time is a dream come true for me.

See the whole article here.


SDCC 2009: Titans, JLA and Teen Titans

Big Titans News from the DC Universe Panel. Dick Grayson Batman and Donna Troy join the Justice League. (One of those silhouettes on the cover also looks suspiciously like Starfire). Kid Flash gets hs own series. Deathstroke becomes the new team leader in TITANS. And plans are afoot for TEEN TITANS.

DC Universe Panel, as reported by CBR:

-- "Johns promised a new speedster coming out of "Flash: Rebirth" and running right into the "Blackest Night: Flash" series he's doing with Scott Kollins. And once "Blackest Night" ends, Johns will be writing a Flash monthly book. Johns later said that he wanted to do the same thing with the Flash franchise he did with Green Lantern. It's his favorite character, and to build the franchise Sterling Gates will come on to write "Kid Flash.""

-- "Art was shown for Robinson's upcoming run on "Justice League America" with artist Mark Bagley. A new lineup was teased of which Robinson said, "At the moment, I don't think the team is everything it should be. I want to make the team great again." With "Cry For Justice" taking place just before "Blackest Night," Robinson's run starts proper with "Justice League of America" #38 including two issues tying into "Blackest Night." "You're going to see a character I believe can be great...female Dr. Light against Black Lantern evil Dr. Light," the writer teased, adding that the new team will feature Mon-El in a new Superman-inspired costume, Dick Grayson as Batman and Donna Troy who "I'm going to make her kick ass in this book.""

-- "
When a fan asked for Johns to come back onto "Teen Titans" and work to "fix" the franchise, the writer said that Superboy, Kid Flash, Tim Drake and Wonder Girl will all appear in the first arc of "Adventure Comics" and that he had spoken with the new writers taking over both that series and "Titans" saying, "They're going to be really, really good books." Deathstroke will become the leader of the Titans team when Wallace writes "Titans" later this year."

DC Universe Panel, as reported by Newsarama:

-- On the JLA team: "
The team will have: Mon-El (in a new costume with a Superman "S" on it), Dick Grayson Batman, Donna Troy and Hal Jordan. The other characters are a "mystery," says Robinson."

-- "
Eric Wallace has joined the panel, talking about Titans. "We're going to have a new leader for the Titans, someone that you might be familiar with, by the name of Deathstroke: The Terminator," Wallace informs. Some brief talk about Teen Titans preceded the Titans dicsussion."

-- "
Johns says "I want to do the same thing with Flash that we've done with Green Lantern," adding that he's going to be doing Flash, and Sterling Gates will be writing Kid Flash. They'll be writing in close contact with each other, a la Johns on Green Lantern and Peter J. Tomasi on Green Lantern Corps."

-- "
Fan: "Ever since Geoff has left Teen Titans, that book has been a mess. Please come back to Teen Titans." Johns said that Bart, Conner, Tim and Cassie will be in the first arc of Adventure Comics."

-- "
Wallace pointed out that Felicia D. Henderson, new writer of Teen Titans, was in the audience, and that fans should be excited for her plans. Johns added, "I can't wait to read Titans and Teen Titans.""


SDCC 2009: Titans Tidbits

From the DC Nation panel:

-- "With Trigon removed, what is Raven good for? "Raven is going to be very important in Teen Titans soon," DiDio said."

From The Superman Panel:

-- "
Geoff Johns briefly ran down what would appear in "Adventure Comics," drawing laughter when he mentioned "the good Teen Titans." He also said, "If you don't like Krypto, don't read our book.""

-- "
Manapul liked that "Adventure" was a charming book "and I can actually show it to my mom." "It's like a Norman Rockwell comic,' Manapul added."

-- "Superboy Prime will appear in "Adventure Comics" #4-5, Johns said."

From Blackest Night Panel:

-- "
JT Krul's "Blackest Night Titans" will feature "a hell of a lot of dead Titans, as Titans fans know," Johns said. Berganza said that Ed Benes "makes death look really sexy.""


SDCC 2009!

Yes, Titans peeps. Another exhausting Comic-Con is now complete. A few Titans tidbits, sketches and other assorted madness. I'll be reporting and sharing some stuff the next few days...


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Talking Teen Titans With Felicia D. Henderson

CBR reports: Henderson, who confirmed for CBR News that she has left “Fringe” to pursue this and other projects, is thrilled to be writing one of DC Comics’ flagship titles. In her first comics-related interview, Henderson also shared her love for core members of the team, why she can relate to Static, and how stalking a well-known DC executive helped get her a dream job.

What about the team itself? The cover of your first issue features Wonder Girl, Blue Beetle, Bombshell, Static, Miss Martian and Aquagirl. Will this be your lineup moving forward?

Some characters will come, other will go, a villain will go on a terror, blah, blah, blah. What I can tell you is that this is absolutely the line up for issues #75 and #76. Sorta.

Share a few thoughts about what you love about each of the members, or what you’re learning to love about them as your sink your teeth into this project.

What I love about the characters has as much to do with them as pieces of a whole as it does about them individually. In other words, each of them represents an opportunity to tell great stories by exploiting the complimentary attributes of each, good and bad.

I love Bombshell because she still feels like an outsider who has the ability to mix it up, and because some problems and like yours truly, she’s got attitude issues.

I love Wonder Girl because she has no idea how amazing she is and therefore is having this crisis of confidence, but still has to lead and make decisions that will change the team forever.

I have a soft spot for Blue Beetle because he comes from a background that made him have to be tough to survive way before he had to be tough to fight crime. I’m really looking forward to re-examining who he is and the challenges and pain, literally, of living in his skin.

Static is special because he’s the male version of me – Pasadena, California as my Dakota. I was this kid growing up, except for the whole big bang explosion-turns-you-into-a-super-hero-ability-to-harness-electromagnetism part.

Aqua Girl and Miss Martian are also cool because they represent some additional serious girl power. And present opportunities for romance not with each other, of course.

Read the whole interview here.

Preview: Teen Titans #73

DCSource Blog has posted a preview of Teen Titans #73, which hits shelves 7/29:

Writer Bryan Q. Miller (Smallville), who’ll be kicking off the new BATGIRL series in no time, continues his jaunt through the Teen Titans world, as the team tries to rescue Wonder Girl from the new Fearsome Five, as the Calculator enacts his revenge on the team for not protecting his daughter. Plus, writer Sean McKeever and artist Yildiray Cinar continue to chronicle the solo adventures of everyone’s favorite one-eyed teen, Ravager, in the issue’s second feature. What more do you need? Preview pages? Sure.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Titans in October

Newsarama Offers an October preview....

TITANS #18 Written by Bryan Q. Miller Art by Angel Unzueta and Wayne Faucher Cover by Angel Unzueta With the Titans team slowly dissolving as members drift their own way, only the empath Raven recognizes the mounting disconnection. With her only friends drifting apart, Raven makes a surprising life choice that will affect the course of her strained relationship with Beast Boy. On sale October 14 * 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Written by Felicia D. Henderson; co-feature written by Sean McKeever Art by Joe Bennett & Jack Jadson; co-feature art by Yildiray Cinar & Júlio Ferreira Cover by Joe Bennett & Jack Jadson Guest-starring Beast Boy and Raven! With the Teen Titans unraveling at the seams, two former members must return to Titans Tower to help Wonder Girl right the sinking ship! If only it were that easy... And in the Ravager second feature, Rose uncovers a horrific black market. And she deals with it the only way she knows how: with blood. On sale October 28 * 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US

Written by Art Baltazar & Franco
Art and cover by Art Baltazar
The first rule of the All Pet Club issue is: Please tell everyone you see today about the All Pet Club issue! The second rule of the All Pet Club issue is: Please tell everyone you see tomorrow about the All Pet Club issue! After all, it's not just Pet Club – it's Pet Club in space!
On sale October 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.50 US

Written by J.T. Krul
Art and cover by Ed Benes & Rob Hunter
Variant cover by George Perez
With their backs against the walls of a battered Titans Tower, the few remaining Titans face their dead former teammates who have now become Black Lanterns! Meanwhile, one Titan discovers a secret weapon...but at what price? Don't miss this finale from writer J.T. Krul (JSA CLASSIFIED, Fathom) and superstar artist Ed Benes (JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA)!
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with two covers. For every 25 copies of the Standard Edition (with a cover by Ed Benes & Rob Hunter), retailers may order one copy of the Variant Edition (with a cover by George Perez). Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.

On sale October 28 - 3 of 3 - 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Written by Geoff Johns
Art and cover by Ivan Reis & Oclair Albert
Variant cover by Ethan Van Sciver
Sketch variant cover by Ivan Reis
Summer’s hottest event explodes in this critical issue! Hold on to your power rings, because the secrets behind the Blackest Night finally stand revealed! While Earth is evacuated, Hal Jordan embarks on a brave journey to the darkest depths to uncover the truth behind the Black Lanterns! You won’t believe what he uncovers!
Continuing the best-selling epic from superstars Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis!
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with three covers. For every 25 copies of the Standard Edition (with a cover by Ivan Reis & Oclair Albert), retailers may order one copy of the Variant Edition (with a cover by Ethan Van Sciver). For every 100 copies of the Standard Edition, retailers may order one copy of the Sketch Variant Edition (with a cover by Ivan Reis). Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
On sale October 21 • 4 of 8 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US

Written by Kevin Smith
Art by Walter Flanagan & Art Thibert
Cover by Bill Sienkiewicz
Variant covers by Gene Ha
As The Dark Knight stalks the night preying upon Gotham City’s criminals, Bruce Wayne spends his days getting reacquainted with former girlfriend Silver St. Cloud. Plus, Batman learns the name of his mysterious masked ally. From superstar creator Kevin Smith and guest-starring Aquaman, the New Teen Titans and Deathstroke the Terminator!
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with two covers. For every 25 copies of the Standard Edition (with a cover by Bill Sienkiewicz), retailers may order one copy of the Variant Edition (with a cover by Gene Ha). For every 50 copies of the Standard Edition, retailers may order one copy of the Sketch Variant Edition (with a cover by Gene Ha). Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
On sale October 28 • 3 of 6 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Written by Geoff Johns; co-feature written by Geoff Johns & Michael Shoemaker
Art by Francis Manapul, co-feature art by Clayton Henry
Covers by Francis Manapul
Superboy is back and hunting for Lex Luthor! He can’t find Luthor on his own, and he needs help from his best friend Tim Drake, a.k.a. Robin. But Tim’s now traveling the globe under the alias of Red Robin! The boys’ reunion isn’t all smiles and hugs, as Conner discovers that Tim has been hiding a great many secrets from the newly returned Boy of Steel. And they’re secrets that could destroy their friendship!
Plus, in the Legion of Super-Heroes co-feature, the intergalactic odd couple known as Sun Boy and Polar Boy team up to figure out what’s up with the menace trying to destroy the universe.
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with two covers. For every 10 copies of the Standard Edition (with a cover by Francis Manapul), retailers may order one copy of the Variant Edition (with a cover by Francis Manapul and renamed and renumbered ADVENTURE COMICS #506). Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
On sale October 14 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US

Written by Keith Giffen; co-feature written by Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis
Art by Matthew Clark & Livesay;co-feature art by Kevin Maguire
Cover by Matthew Clark
Variant cover by Matthew Clark and Kevin Maguire
Remember Mento? Yeah, that guy – goofy helmet, lightning bolt on his chest. After reading this issue, it's a sure bet you won't forget him again any time soon. Oh yeah, and the resolution of that whole "black hole" thing from last issue adds a kinda-sorta new member to the Doom Patrol roster. As for everyone's favorite Metal Men, it's the dynamic debut of Douglas, Robot Hunter! We're too good to you.
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with two covers. For every 10 copies of the Standard Edition (with a cover by Matthew Clark), retailers may order one copy of the Variant Edition (with a cover by Matthew Clark and Kevin Maguire). Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
On sale October 7 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Titans Sales Watch: June

DeTroyes from ComicBloc has posted another excellent sales analysis:

June sales estimates have now been posted. Time for the monthly sales analysis.

As always, sales estimates courtesy of ICv2:


Issue # / Release Month / Year / # Units Sold / +/- Previous Month

Teen Titans (Ongoing)
#71 May 2009 3,734 n/a (NOTE: REORDERS!!)
#72 June 2009 32,512 -1,598
(see note below concerning these numbers!)

Titans (Ongoing)
#14 June 2009 32,321 -2,022

Tiny Titans (Ongoing)
#17 June 2009 8,640 -204

Superman/Batman (Ongoing)
#61 June 2009 38,228 -1,303 w/The Justice Titans



Teen Titans: OK, this is going to take some explaining. You may remember that last month the following sales figures were reported for Teen Titans:

Teen Titans (Ongoing)
#71 May 2009 30,376 -5,036

Note the 5k drop. That seemed a pretty steep drop-off, far more than the title has been trending for the last few years. A variety of reasons were speculated, but even so, that still seemed like an ominous number. It didn't seem likely that there would be any significant reorders, since none worth recording have ever shown up before. But low and behold, a significant number of re-orders (or more likely, lagging orders that for some reason did not get figured into the original May numbers) did show up in the June numbers. This means that the May numbers for Teen Titans #71 now officially look like this:

Teen Titans (Ongoing):
#71 May 2009 34,110 -1,302
(May - 30,376; June - 3,734)

A much smaller drop-off, and one that fits much more securely in the title's general trend. Still not great, considering where the title was, but at least not as much as was originally feared.

Titans: As I originally predicted a few months ago, Titans has now officially dipped below Teen Titans in sales numbers. This has happened not because of better sales for Teen Titans, but because Titans drop-off numbers have been generally steeper than Teen Titans have been. *sigh* Titans #14 was a "Day in the Life" issue, so the dip was pretty much expected. The real test will be next issue, which will have the return of Tempest and is being billed as a Blackest Night tie-in. Still, the numbers keep going down, which does not bode well.

Tiny Titans: While I don't think its bad news, I would point out that the sales numbers for June were the lowest they've ever been for this title. Still, for a Johnny DC title, those numbers are quite healthy. And the compilations sell very well, so there's no chance this one is going anywhere.

Overall: The sales numbers have resumed their downwards trends. While they haven't reached cancellation levels yet, both titles are starting to run out of room. With permanent writers announced for both titles we can hope that those numbers will stabilize, but if so, it has to happen soon.



I had at least one request to keep tracking the numbers on Vigilante, so here they are for June:

Vigilante (Ongoing)
#7 June 2009 11,483 -7,394

Wish I had better news to report on this title, but I don't. Vigilante has gone right back to the numbers it had prior to "Deathtrap", and that's a shame.

Cancellation by the end of this year. Sorry, but that's my prediction.


Eric Wallace's Titanic Task

In his first interview about his new “Titans” assignment, Wallace told CBR News he hadn’t discussed the interworkings of the two titles with [Teen Titans writer] Henderson just yet, but teased the two teams will be crossing over in the months ahead.

You also mentioned you were a big fan of the legendary Wolfman/Pérez run on the original “Teen Titans.” Have you been plowing through those back issues in preparation for this assignment?

Definitely. I love those stories, but I hadn’t read a lot of them in over a decade, so I wanted to brush up my familiarity with the world. Now I don’t plan on copying any specific storylines, but I do want to recapture the sense of immediacy and deep characterization they gave to their tales. And of course, throw in tons of action, because I really like to see things blow up.

“Titans” #14 focused on Cyborg. Will Vic Stone be a major player during your run? And if so, what makes him such compelling subject matter?

Yes… and no. I can’t really go into that too deeply yet, because exact storylines and how they affect the characters are still being developed. I can say that what makes him so compelling for me is his duplicity. He’s a man trapped in a computerized body. And in the modern computerized age that’s a huge advantage in every way, except when it comes to being a man. By that I mean affairs of the heart and all the other interesting stuff that comes with being human.

By the way, if there’s anything I specifically want to do on my run of “Titans” it’s to make sure that readers can recognize the characters on this team as deeply human. That means they’ll have flaws, they’ll get into arguments, some of them might even sleep with each other or at least try really hard to, and of course they’ll occasionally need to have some laughs and blow off some steam. After all, they’re not teens anymore, they’re adults, and it’ll be my responsibility now with these upcoming stories to write them that way.

Another character you admitted great affinity towards was Red Arrow. What do you love about Roy Harper?

What’s not to love about Speedy? Yes, I actually used to read “Teen Titans” as a kid before the Wolfman/Pérez run. You know, back when the Joker’s daughter was a member? And Hawk and Dove were around? Actually, they were my older sibling’s comic books, but I used to borrow them and read them after school. So I’ve actually been following Roy for a long time as a fan.

Read the whole article here.

I haven't really formed an opinion on Wallace one way or the other. It does seem like everyone at DC keeps talking about these "big plans" for the Titans, yet the two titles have been in flux for some time now....

Friday, July 03, 2009

Geoff Johns on Blackest Night Titans

In his discussion of Blackest Night, Geoff Johns has some things to say about Blackest Night: Titans:

NRAMA: There are several three-issue mini-series that tell the stories of characters like Batman and Superman and The Titans. Why that choice?

GJ: These stories are being told because they have a clear reason for being told. Blackest Night: Titans has a clear reason that fits into the bigger DC Universe story of Blackest Night.

And there's so much emotional material to get out of that. I mean, Superman and Superman of Earth 2 – there's a lot that James Robinson is getting out of those two characters. The same with the Titans. You've got Beast Boy and Terra. So there's just story potential and emotional potential to explore these characters, each very differently, by looking at the people that they've loved and lost, or feared and lost. That's the reason for the various mini-series that tie into Blackest Night.


GJ: So in the case of Blackest Night: Titans, which I think is going to be the sleeper of all the mini-series, it's not there so much to explain who Terra is, but it's there to explore Beast Boy and the Titans through Terra and through the other deceased Titans. It's to explore who these characters are now through who they were and where they're going next.

Sounds... interesting?

TITANS #15 Preview: Tempest Returns

The DCU Blog has posted a preview for TITANS #15.

My magic blogging eight-ball just said “Blogging Will Be Light,” so I’m going with that. Oh, and it’s a holiday weekend. So, yes. This’ll be it for today. But, we bring you some more fun news from the DCU editorial gang. Specifically, TITANS editor Brian Cunningham. What say you, BC?:

“When is Tempest coming back?”

More often than not, that’s been the question fans have asked since TITANS launched last year. A fair query, since Tempest has been AWOL from the DC Universe for seemingly longer than the Jonas Brothers have been alive.

So when we here at DC started discussing the mega-event called BLACKEST NIGHT with writer Geoff Johns, we all figured, “Let’s bring back Tempest in style.” So, bam, he’s smack in the early pages of BLACKEST NIGHT #1. If that’s not style, I don’t know what is. (This coming from a guy who still wears shirts from 1996. But let’s stay on topic here.)

Okay. So, Tempest is in BLACKEST NIGHT. Huzzah! But then we figured, “Wait. Let’s find out where he’s been first. What’s kept him from appearing all this time?” That’s where TITANS #15 comes in. We find out exactly where he’s been and what he’s been doing. It’s pretty heavy and not for non-swimmers.

With the spiritual guidance of Geoff Johns, writer J.T. Krul plumbs the depths of Garth’s soul, while also setting him up for his future in the DC Universe, which we’ll see in BLACKEST NIGHT and in the BLACKEST NIGHT: TITANS mini-series. With gorgeous art by José Luis and J.P. Mayer, I really feel that we’ll surprise people. The last page of TITANS #15 alone should certainly provoke a strong reaction.

So mark you calenders for July 15 when TITANS #15 goes on sale in comic stores. In the meantime, check out this exclusive excerpt below. It’ll whet your appetite for more Tempest. And quite possibly some shellfish.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Didio Names TITANS Creative Team

This from Dan Didio's 20 Answers:

4. Felicia Henderson was announced as the new Teen Titans writer. She’s new to comics, so what qualities does she have, in your view, what suits her to the job, and what body of work do you look at to gauge that?

DD: I’d met Felicia several times over the last year or so, and primarily, our discussions centered around the fact that she’s a huge comic fan and enjoys what we’re doing. Quite honestly, I look at her body of work over the years, but one of the things that I found most interesting is over the last couple of years, her work on shows like Fringe and Gossip Girls. She has a unique voice and a unique style, and brings a fresh set of eyes to our characters, and will hopefully bring us new ideas and stories, and even though we’re constantly working on story ideas and direction, a new sensibility and a vibrancy to the book. That’s what we’re striving to do day in and day out.

The bottom line is that she’s an incredibly talented writer, and I feel lucky to be able to give her a shot at working with us on this book.

5. Is there a similar announcement about the Titans creative team coming up?

DD: I’m sure there will be shortly.

NRAMA: Got a ballpark on time?

DD: How about right now? We’re happy to say that the team that’s working on Final Crisis Aftermath: Ink right now, Eric Wallace and Farbrizio Fiorentino will become the new regular team on the series after the current stories wrap up, but when they do come on board, expect dramatic changes in the world of the Titans.

9. Are there plans for Donna Troy outside of the Titans titles?

DD: Donna has a reunion with her family in Blackest Night: Titans #1.

NRAMA: Her family’s dead.

DD: Which is why it makes sense that she meets them in a Blackest Night

"Dramatic Changes"? Again?

What do we think of this? Do we like the new creative team on TITANS?

Preview: Adventure Comics #1

At the DCBlog.

Geoff Johns. Francis Manapul. Superboy. Adventure Comics. Enjoy.


Batwoman & Flamebird Family History

In the WordBalloon podcast , Greg Rucka mentions that Bette Kane (retconned as Kate Kane's cousin rather than niece) will appear in Kate's origin story, beginning in Detective Comics #856:

Rucka: "When we put [Batwoman] in 52 we did it in was in response to the [New York Times] thing...and consequently there were certain problems that had to be reconciled for her to be Betty Kane's aunt ...there has to be (a sibling relationship to Kate)... so they are now cousins'll see Betty in #856.""

First, it's "Bette" not "Betty." Unless we're ret-conning her name again.

And, I dunno.... Bette is like, what? 23-25 years old? And the new Batwoman (Kate Kane) is what, mid-30s? She could be her aunt OR her cousin. Pretty simple and non-convoluted. Kate's brother (Bette's father) could be 10-15 years older than Kate.

I do prefer the "aunt" angle, though. It created a nice mirror to Bruce/Dick, so I don't see the need for the "cousins" thing. With Batwoman's brother as Bette Kane's dad... that's a more interesting dynamic to me, especially if they bring Bette's dad onto the canvas and develop him as well. Whatever HIS story is, it could create some interesting story dynamics between Batwoman and Bette.

Maybe Kate was the "baby" of the family; The spoiled youngest child. Maybe she had a bunch of wild teen years. Maybe her older brother resents her, because he was the responsible one. Maybe he doesn't like Kate's influence on his daughter. Maybe he resents the fact that Bette likes "Aunt Kate" more than her own parents. Does he even know Bette was/is Flamebird? What happened when he found out, if he did?

I think having Better's father/Kate's brother open up more story possibilities than "cousins"