DC Comics is contracting its universe. Again.
It’s not quite the DC Implosion of 1978, but the roster of titles is shrinking from 52 to 49, and the “New 52” moniker is going away — even as the company says continuity will remain the same and therefore this is not another reboot or relaunch. And, in fact, DC is launching a whole slew of new titles — including a few mini-series — to replace the dead ones, and rebranding some existing comics with new titles.
Apparently, DC just wants to shed the “New 52” label — maybe Warner Bros. lawyers are big on truth in advertising now? And there is only a net loss of three titles, following the cancellation of a bunch of comics with the March solicitations.
As of June 3, DC’s post-New 52 comics line will be 24 titles and 25 ongoing comics that will retain their numbering (Yay, no new “collectors’ item” No. 1 issues!).
Since DC will be introducing 24 new titles to supplement its ongoing series this summer, that means something (okay, a lot of somethings) has to go.
Here are the titles being canceled in the wake of DC‘s “Convergence” storyline in April and May:
- Aquaman and the Others #11
Arkham Manor #6
Batman Eternal #52
Earth 2: World’s End
Green Lantern: New Guardians #40
Infinity Man and the Forever People #9
Injustice: Gods Among Us – Year Three #12
The New 52: Futures End
Red Lanterns #40
Secret Origins #11
Star-Spangled War Stories Featuring G.I. Zombie #8
Swamp Thing #40
Trinity of Sin #6
World’s Finest #32
It’s a shame that Swamp Thing wasn’t able to hang on, and I suppose there will be no need for an Earth 2 title after “Convergence.” We shall see.
Now that DC Comics has had a year to shake down its “New 52” company-wide relaunch, Marvel is poised to get into the act with its own rebranding, called “Marvel NOW!”
It looks like things start hitting the fan in October when, according to solicitations, Marvel cancels nine titles — including some surprising ones — and launches a new flagship comic and a movie tie-in miniseries.
The following issues, shipping in October, will be the final issues of these series: Captain America #19, The Mighty Thor #22, Incredible Hulk #15, Invincible Iron Man #527, Fantastic Four #611, FF #23, Uncanny X-Men #20, New Mutants #50, and X-Men: Legacy #275.
You’ve probably noticed that “Green Lantern Gay” has been one of the top Trending Topics on Yahoo and a lot of other web pages over the last few days, either for good or bad reasons, depending on your point of view. I think it’s for the better.
As part of the “New 52” initiative begun almost exactly a year ago, dedicated to relaunching all of DC Comics’ superhero titles with new No. 1 issues and rebooting or “refreshing” the characters, the decision was made to recreate Alan Scott, the legendary first Green Lantern who debuted way back in 1940, as gay. Previously, Scott was happily married and had two children: a daughter and a son who happened to be gay. When Alan was reimagined to be much younger, the gay son, a superhero in his own right, known as Obsidian (His daughter was also a heroine, known as Jade.) was rendered moot, so writer James Robinson decided to make Alan himself gay in the new comic book series Earth 2.
DC Comics has taken its lumps lately (deservedly so) for changing its logo and pursuing prequels to the sacred text that is Watchmen, but I thought I’d step back and talk about DC is a positive light for a change. The New 52 project – in which DC relaunched virtually the entire line with new issue No. 1s – has proven to be mostly a success, in the sense that a lot of the books are interesting again. So I’ve picked out one that I like to start the discussion: Frankenstein Agent of S.H.A.D.E.
S.H.A.D.E. stands for the Super Human Advanced Defense Executive, and it is a government agency changed with dealing with weird stuff in the DC Universe – so far, that means fighting a lot of monsters. The organization is run by Father Time, with the help of science adviser Ray Palmer (who may or may not be the Atom in this continuity). In a brilliant bit of inventiveness, Palmer miniaturized the S.H.A.D.E. headquarters, which presumably makes it more difficult to find – and damn hard to attack!