Happy 75th birthday Superman! As a gift, this week you get a brand new summer blockbuster film and a brand new ongoing monthly comic book series! How’s that for perfect timing? It’s like it was planned or something!
Oh! And did I mention that the new comic book series is both written and illustrated by two of the biggest names in comics?
Vertigo Comics, rest in peace. Long live Vertigo Comics!
The evolution of DC Comics’ sophisticated-story publishing imprint continues this month with the release of another creator-owned work. And “evolution” is an apt word, as you’ll discover shortly.
Vertigo has, for the most part, abandoned itself of all DC character properties, bringing them into the larger fold that is the DC universe in order to share tales alongside world-recognized superheroes and super villains. That means that the imprint, current publisher of acclaimed titles such as Fables, The Unwritten and American Vampire, is more in line with Dark Horse Comics and Image Comics now, publishers of comic books that are owned by their writers and artists.
The latest addition to that publishing stable? Scott Snyder and Sean Murphy’s The Wake.
We’ve been here before. Sort of.
Flashback: It’s the fall of 1988 and I, along with thousands of other Batman fans, excitedly pick up the double-sized Batman #426. The Mike Mignola cover (along with a wave of advertising) promises that the “A Death in the Family” four-part storyline, written by Jim Starlin ad illustrated by Jim Aparo, would prove absolutely epic. The final page, a preview of what was to come promised that “Someone will die because the Joker wants revenge. But you can prevent it.”
Me? How? I’m just a reader!
That fall, DC Comics made readers writers – and the unprecedented responsibility of a characters life – or death – was in fandom’s hands!
A year in the making.
That’s how long it’s been that the fanboys and fangirls of DC’s “New 52” have been waiting for the return of Batman’s arch villain, the Joker.
Oh, yeah, you remember: the final scene in the pages of last September’s Detective Comics #1 - the scene where Joker really goes off the deep end and, as part of some sick, twisted scheme, has his outer epidermis savagely sheared from his face and left behind, pinned to a wall as a trophy – no – as a warning, for Gotham’s finest?
A “rebirth”, Joker called it.
We haven’t seen him since that issue. And now it’s October. 2012. And Joker’s back. You don’t get a better Halloween treat than that, do you? Yes you do!
There’s a trick to go with that treat!
Over the past twelve months, since the launch of DC Comics’ “New 52” wherein the publishing company re-numbered every title with a new #1, writer Scott Snyder has been crafting a Batman tale long in the making. Well, long in comic book terms.
You see, he’s gone back to the origins of Gotham and reshaped the architecture of what we, as readers, had grown accustomed to: that the city was Batman’s. That no one knew its streets, alleyways, buildings and history as well as the Dark Knight Detective.
Over the last twelve months, Scott Snyder has made an overconfident Batman weak with his distinct lack of historical knowledge. He discovers, in essence, that he doesn’t know his own city! And we readers have followed the character in his naivety, making for some startling – and amazingly fun – reading!
Armed with a bottle of wine and his friend (and Torontonian) Jeff Lemire of Sweet Tooth fame, we got a glimpse of one of the hottest comics writer today. With Jeff moderating, the panel started with Scott Snyder’s history. He originally wanted to go to Rhode Island School of Design but because of a differing class schedule he fell more into writing than art.
While Snyder got a book deal just out of college, it turned into a tough situation where a publisher’s expectations kept him chained to an awful book. To relieve the pressure he wrote super hero stories on the side. At his eventual book opening, Vertigo approached him to write one shots. It was a dream come true for him and his foot was in the door. He eventually pitched for American Vampire and won it but that was not before he was desperate to make the bills. At times he had to work where he could, even working at Disney as a janitor and eventually as a Disney character. Without his wife’s support he could not have transitioned into comics from the literary world.
More of Scott Snyder’s Comic-Con 2012 panel after the jump.
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The second episode of our Biff Bam Popcast! will begin livestreaming tonight at 9pm. Tonight Glenn Walker, Jason Shayer, and myself talk the summer blockbuster season so far, the latest issue of Scott Snyder’s Batman, Before Watchmen and more! Watch it below or click back later to catch the replay.
With all of the recent The Avengers film and Avengers vs. X-Men news making the rounds on various websites, newspapers, television commercials and radio spots these days, you’d think that DC Comics had ceased publishing comics.
The company that took the brave leap of restarting and/or rebooting all of their characters and titles last September with brand new first issues, has been publishing comic books a-plenty.
Of those fifty-two separate publications, Batman has been one of my favourites – but never more so than with today’s release.