Newsarama has posted a graphic showing all the logos for the new DC 52 series. Included are the three Justice League logos. The default Justice League logo reminds me of the logo on All-Star Superman. The basic formula is a bold JUSTICE and a narrow lined LEAGUE with the third word, where there is one, emphasised by a perspective distortion. It works well for Justice League Dark, but I’m not so convinced about the JLI logo. It actually look me a while to realise that the mottling was the world map, but that may just have been the small size of the image.
DC has separating its new 52 books out into distinct brands (“Edge”, “Dark”, “Young Justice”, etc) and this panel was focused on the Justice League line of books (tagline “Worlds Greatest Super Heroes”). This naturally includes Justice League (writer Geoff Johns and aritist Jim Lee) and Justice League International (writer Dan Jurgens), but also books like Captain Atom (JT Krul), Green Arrow (writer JT Krul, artist Jurgens), Hawkman (artist Philip Tan), Flash (Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato), Mister Terrific (writer Eric Wallace), were also present – plus Johns in his capacity as the writer of Aquaman and Green Lantern. The panel was moderated by DC’s Senior Vice-President of Sales Bob Wayne and Executive Editor Eddie Berganza.
You can find an MP3 download podcast of the panel on DC’s website. There were quite a few creators present, but the JLI and JLI books took up most of the discussion.
Jim Lee introduced the Justice League:
It’s been a real delight working with Geoff [Johns], we’ve talked about working together for a long time. And it’s great to be on a team book again, honestly. I’ve been working on single character books for a long time. All those characters have side kicks and foils and things like that to interact with, but it’s predominantly a single flavour that you get out of Superman or Batman. Doing a team book gives you a completely different dynamic. It’s all about the interaction between all these iconic characters and Geoff is just a master at exploring the personalities behind the masks. The characters have different ideologies and personalities, it’s great having that interaction between characters like Batman and Green Lantern.
There is a lot of humour, I actually laugh a lot each time I read the script, probably in places I’m not supposed to be. I always learn something working with new writers for the first time, he’s [Geoff] really brought out the humanity in these characters. I hope you guys get a kick out of it.
Later in the Aquaman segment Geoff Johns touched on the humour element.
I’m really trying to inject some humour into all my books this time around from Justice League, to Aquaman, to Green Lantern get back to, instead of superheroes talking with other superheroes all the time, have superheroes interacting with real people.
Geoff on Hawkman:
He’s also a member of the Justice League. Everybody’s having a meeting and they’re all talking and a big mace falls on the table. They look up and Hawkman’s there. He sits down and goes “don’t worry, it’s not my blood!
How Cyborg can be a founding member of the Justice League given that he was originally a the Teen Titans character will be addressed in Justice League. Adding Cyborg to the team is about shaking things up, Geoff Johns said that:
I didn’t want to do the same seven that everybody predicts. The Martian Manhunter, well you’ll see where the Martian Manhunter is at, in the storyline, the origin, but, I like Cyborg, I think he’s a great character. I’ve written him for years and years in the Titans and Flash and I really think he’s a modern-day superhero. I don’t know if anybody in here doesn’t have an online identity, but he’s online and offline all the time.
Jim Lee was asked whether the Justice League costumes were “Paul Gambini originals?”
The design on Justice League. We wanted them to be obviously a team and we had a chance to design the costumes in a way that subtly suggests that they are team-like so there are similarities between the costumes. The high collars, I just think they look more regal more majestic. If you look at a lot of the more open-collar costumes, like Superman and Aquaman, [they] harken back to the late 1930s and 40s strongman kind of appearance. So it was just giving it an update.
It was also noted that Ivan Reis had put that a high collar on Aquaman before Jim Lee came to do the JLA costume redesign.
Another questioner brought up the Manhunter issue and Johns reiterated that J’onzz’s status will be addressed somewhere in the first arc (“there is a story to be had there”), but from a larger perspective there is an in-universe reason in the New 52 as to why there is only one alien (to wit Superman) on the Justice League. Geoff jokes that “When everybody see him they’re like “its a Martian!” and Hal’s like “hey dude”. The Manhunter will be in Paul Cornell’s Stormwatch.
- Why isn’t Dick Grayson carried over in a team, even through he’s now Nightwing? Johns said that Nightwing was left out of the Justice League explicitly because he was such a good team player – an anti-social Batman makes for more interesting drama.
- A woman questioner commented that condensing the DC timeline into five years must make it “really traumatic five years” for those who had to live through it. Geoff Johns said that would be addressed.
- We’ll be getting new villains in JL. Something like the Legion of Doom, but not called the Legion of Doom, will show up Justice League next year.
Justice League International
Dan Jurgens introduced the new Justice League International:
The Justice League International is an officially United Nations sponsored group [that is] in part is a reaction to the JLA. Batman, Rocket Red, Fire, August General in Iron, Booster, Guy (kinda of in and out a little bit), Vixen, Ice, and its going to be a bit of a rotating membership. Because some of these guys think – and when I say “Guys” is that a clue – some of these guys might think that they deserve to be in a somewhat better group than JLI. So there is a little bit of coming and going as the roster changes and rotates, but it is a group that is put together in direct response to the JLA.
Aaron Lopresti is doing incredible artwork on this book, he’s knocked the ball out of the park page after page. It’s a lot of big open stuff as I think this page shows [the coloured page] and its one of those things that we’re really trying to bring back, I think a lot of action and movement into the DC Universe, lots of big visuals, lots of fun stuff. As you can see here too [surprised as second JLI page is shown], as we continue on JLI. Not yet coloured, but Aaron and inker Matt Ryan are really going fabulous work on this. There is just tremendous characterisation that is coming through in their artwork, all the figure work, and everything they do.
On the Batman’s inclusion in both teams:
With JLI – I’ve got to figure how to do without giving too much away – let’s put it this way: JLI is a sponsored United Nations organisation that it put together in response to the JLA right? Well the JLA kinda thinks that they have somebody attached to their team that the United Nations knows nothing about. So he’s [Batman] kind of the bridge between the two teams and it’s not like the Batman would ever do what the UN tells him to. So he’s there because he thinks that’s where he should be and building a bit of a conduit between the two groups.
Dan Jurgens later brought the JLI cover back up and pointed out that none of the characters, with the exception of Batman, were wearing masks:
One of the things we’re building in the new DC Universe, as it pertains to this group, is the idea that all these people are much more known than typical, and remember I said that Batman was there without the UN’s permission. They went though an exercise that said we don’t want people with masks and identities we don’t necessarily know, and we sure don’t want any aliens.
Issues about of the new line’s diversity was raised several times. Mister Terrific’s Eric Wallace stressed that the drive to increase diversity wasn’t limited to the headline characters, but there was also effort put in to increase the diversity of the supporting casts and the background characters.
The questions about diversity also prompted responses that revealed details that various writers may otherwise have held off until their books would have appeared. Dan Jurgens said that August-General-In-Iron had become one of his favourite characters in the JLI book. Geoff teased that there was a “smaller” character in Justice League who rhymed with “batom” (pretty much telegraphing that the Ryan Choi version of the Atom was to make an appearance).
There was an interesting and slightly tense debate on the prominence of, or lack of, women in the new DCU. This led Geoff to claim that DC has “by far and away more iconic and stronger female superheroes than any other company out there.” The questioner countered that most of those were “Girl” representations of “Man” characters and not adult “Women”. She made several very good points and the panel struggled to convince her that things were being addressed.
Just from my own survey of the Justice League books – Justice League International and Dark are both 50% male/female. The flagship JL title isn’t so balanced as it looks like just Wonder Woman, but there are other characters like Mera and Element Woman, who we haven’t seen yet so we may have to wait to pass judgement on that one.
It was unfortunate that Bob Wayne had to silence the audience at one point.
This week DC Comics published our first look at the new post-Flashpoint Justice League as part of a special DC Comics The New 52 supplement which was shipped free to comic stores and was given out at SDCC 2011. A version was posted online, but lacked the lettering which was included in the print version. The full lettered version can be found below.
A few observations
- The caption says “Five Years Ago” which marks a halving of the canonical 10-year sliding time line that’s been in place since Zero-Hour.
- Batman is circa Frank Miller’s Batman: Year One, e.g. he’s being hunted by SWAT teams in helicopters. He appears to still be an urban-legend again in this era.
- The highlighted knuckles on his gloves and the general look of the Batman redesign is very much like that seen in Batman: Arkham Asylum.
- The monster Batman is hunting down looks very much like one of Darkseid’s Parademons.
- Hal Jordan’s Green Lantern costume has the tunic length green-top he sported in Green Lantern: Rebirth and not the full body Gil Kane original from 1959.
- I like the way that Hal assembles the fire truck construct, he builds it out of its component parts as he throw’s it at the monster. You can still see the back of it being assembled as the front hits ugly.
After Cartoon Network released their SDCC schedule DC Comics have now released their schedule for the con with a massive blitz that includes a The New 52 panel one each day of the four-day convention. And for the first time in several years there will be a dedicated Justice League panel for the Justice League and Justice League International (plus the associated books).
Friday, July 22
4:15-5:15 DC: Justice League
Moderator: Bob Wayne Editor: Eddie Berganza
Comics’ top talents – writer Geoff Johns and artist Jim Lee – team up for the first time ever to bring you the new Justice League, making its debut as part of the new DC Universe! Join Johns, Lee and DC Executive Editor Eddie Berganza as they bring together the talents behind the new JLA titles, including writers Dan Jurgens (Justice League International), JT Krul (Green Arrow), Eric Wallace (Mister Terrific), artists Francis Manapul (The Flash), Brian Buccellato (The Flash), Philip Tan (The Savage Hawkman) and more! Room 6DE
DC Comics have released the above promo-video and a list of frequently asked questions in trying to placate retailers who are nervous about September’s relaunch. They insist the initiative is “not a reboot, it’s a launch”, but then admit that it will undo some continuity while preserving the rest. The permanence of the change is also emphasized when they state that it is “not an ‘event,’ because events expire.”
However, the real meat of the FAQ is about sales incentives. These include:
- The October and November issues of Justice League Dark and Justice League International will be 100% returnable. This means that the retailers can return unsold copies to the distributor for a refund (minus a restocking fee).
- Justice League (vol. 2) #1 will have at 2 variant covers by David Finch (a 1:25 cover and a 1:200 cover).
- Justice League (vol. 2) will be a $3.99 book, but will contain additional content.
Additionally DC will allow retailers to stage midnight sales for Justice League #1 and Flashpoint #5:
Will we be able to have a midnight sale for JUSTICE LEAGUE #1 and FLASHPOINT #5?
Yes, we’ll offer a sale that begins at 12:01am (your local time) on 8/31. We’ll be announcing further details on this soon. This will be open to all accounts currently receiving comics on Tuesday for Wednesday on-sale.
UK retailers please note: Due to the Monday, August 29 Summer Bank Holiday, the midnight sale option will not be available to UK retailers.
Interestingly the poly-bagged print/digital JL #1 combo seems to be a running product and not just a launch stunt:
ill the $4.99 JUSTICE LEAGUE polybagged combo have the same cover as the standard edition or will it have a variant cover?
The cover on the polybagged Justice League will feature the same art as the standard edition, however it will have a different color scheme and a color burst calling out the digital code inside.
* Is the $4.99 JUSTICE LEAGUE polybagged combo pack only for JUSTICE LEAGUE #1, or will this continue to be offered each month?
* Is DC Entertainment going to offer the polybagged digital combo option on any titles other than JUSTICE LEAGUE?
We are only rolling this out on JUSTICE LEAGUE for now.
[via: Bleeding Cool]
Is this our first look at the full post-Flashpoint Justice League? Toon Tumblers are a merchandising company who produced DC and Marvel Comics branded glasses and pitchers. The above artwork was posted to their Facebook page as an SDCC exclusive. They’ll be producing a line of tumblers with a wrap around of the JL for SDCC.
The obvious guess would be that the figures to either side are other members of the JL. These include Deadman, Atom, an unknown woman, and Firestorm on the left and Green Arrow, Hawkman, a blond-haired woman, and Mera on the right. The blond could be Black Canary, but she looks like she’s not in a costume (she’s wearing a coat and scarf).
Jim Lee commented (somewhere I’ll have to dig it out and repost) that they were taking a slightly more corporate look on the Justice League costumes. You can see this with the collars on Aquaman, GL, Superman, and Batman, but also in the shape of the belts/waist detail on GL, Aquaman, WW, Superman, and the Flash. It’s not big stuff, but a lot of subtle stuff. The Batman look reminds me of that from Arkham Asylum and works well – he’s a guy who needs that type of protection – but I’m less sold on Superman’s segment look.
Updated to add that: female character on the left is identified online as Element Woman (DC Women Kick Ass) and the right-hand blond woman is possibly a character called Miranda Shrieve (Blog@Newsarama), both are Flashpoint characters.
[via: DC Women Kicking Ass]
September sees the end of the current line of DC titles and the launch of an entirely new set of book all starting from issue #1. Those new issues will have new writers and we’ve all been every excited about who is on which book. However, we shouldn’t over look the fact that the reshuffle also means that the current creative crews are being reassigned. I’ve tried to compile a list of who is heading where.
(I’m including Generation Lost and Young Justice in this as Gen Lost becomes JLI and YJ has a crew refresh a month before the big DCU rejig. )
Before & After Table
|Old Title||Old Crew||New Title||New Crew|
|Justice League of America (vol. 2)||James Robinson & Brett Booth||Justice League (vol. 2)||Geoff Johns & Jim Lee|
|Justice League: Generation Lost||Judd Winick & Aaron Lopresti/Joe Bennett/Fernando Dagnino||Justice League International (vol. 3)||Dan Jurgens & Aaron Lopresti|
|Young Justice (vol. 2)||Art Baltazar/Franco & Mike Norton||(continues)||Greg Weisman/Kevin Hopps & Christopher Jones|
|Justice League Dark||Peter Milligan & Mikel Janin|
- According to Bleeding Cool Pre-Flashpoint JLA writer James Robinson, who is noticeably absent from the list of DC reboot writers, is already working on a new comics project with several issues already written. Robinson has previously said he has a Shade series in development and was in-line for the Hawkman series before it was given to Tony Daniel.
- Pre-Flashpoint Justice League: Generation Lost writer Judd Winick will be writing Batwing (African’s Batman) and Catwoman.
- Art Baltazar and Franco were the writers of the first six issues of Young Justice (YJ #6 ships in July). They continue to write Tiny Titans for DC’s Johnny DC line.
- Pre-Flashpoint JLA artist Brett Booth becomes the post-Flashpoint artist on Teen Titans. His last JLA issue was #57 so one assumes he’s already moved onto those duties.
- Pre-Flashpoint Generation Lost pencil and ink team Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan are moving over on to the new Justice League International title making them the only Justice League creators who are carried over after Flashpoint.
- The other two Generation Lost pencillers Joe Bennett and Fernando Dagnino will respectively be moving on to Deathstroke and DnA’s Resurrection Man.
- There is no word in the September listings of the inkers Jack Jadson and Raul Fernandez.
- Mike Norton was the artist for Baltazar and Franco’s Youngo Justice run. He isn’t listed in DC’s September listings, but continues to pencil Fear Itself: Youth Revolt for Marvel Comics.
Justice League (vol. 2)
From the USA Today article:
Starting this summer, the publisher will re-number its entire DC Universe of titles, revamping famous characters such as Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and others from its 76-year history for a more modern and diverse 21st century.
The first book to be released under this new era: Justice League No. 1, out Aug. 31, a series by writer Geoff Johns and artist Jim Lee that reunites the famous lineup of Batman, Superman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Wonder Woman and Aquaman.
Johns promises a focus on the interpersonal relationships within DC’s trademark superteam. “What’s the human aspect behind all these costumes?” he says. “That’s what I wanted to explore.”
This should be really good – some of the highlights of Blackest Night were the Barry Allen and Hal Jordan interactions. This will be the second volume to be called just Justice League – the post-Crisis on Infinite Earth series was also called that before it was rebranded as Justice League International (there is a still a previously announced JLI series lurking around somewhere). The JL series launches in the same week as Flashpoint #5.
Updated 01/06/2011: A second USA Today article included more details on the JL series:
Guided by writer Geoff Johns and artist Jim Lee, Justice League will begin its first year with an updated secret origin reflecting DC’s new initiative, giving the group a reason for coming together that it lacked when the league first appeared in 1960. And while it will ultimately boast 14 members, at its core will be DC’s A-list do-gooders: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Green Lantern and Aquaman.
The original image that DC released was a crop of the above image and didn’t show the Flash or Cyborg.
This is also a revamp. Jim Lee from the article:
This was a chance to start, not at the beginning, but at a point where our characters are younger and the stories are being told for today’s audience.
In a letter to Comics Retailers DC goes into a bit more detail on the changes:
We are positioning ourselves to tell the most innovative stories with our characters to allow fans to see them from a new angle. We have taken great care in maintaining continuity where most important, but fans will see a new approach to our storytelling.
Some of the characters will have new origins, while others will undergo minor changes. Our characters are always being updated; however, this is the first time all of our characters will be presented in a new way all at once.
A new approach to storytelling? This could very well be as major as the post-Crisis on Infinite Earths reboots or as minor as the post-Infinite Crisis relaunch. I do have concerns about what the status quo will be. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I was struggling with my more pessimistic tendencies on this one. I’ve see too many relaunches and reboots at DC before. I hope it will be brilliant, I know the people involved should ensure that, but we’re really going to have to wait and see how this one plays out.
Day and date digital
The reason for the relaunch given in the article is a complete, linewide shift to day-and-date digital distribution. I read all of Generation Lost digitally so I’m use to it, but they will have to do something about the price point. $2.99 for a digital comic is too high if you don’t have some sort of download to hard-disc option – it’s just too much money to lock into one company’s digital vault.
Prediction for the next few years: Comixology will be bought by somebody big, really big. Given that Amazon bought Audible I could well see them making a play for Comixology, if the digital comics market continues to expand.