We’ve been down this road with the publishing company a number of times over the last few years, haven’t we? For us readers, it’s been a veritable tempest of reboots and changes, restarts and deviations for the DC Universe cast of characters.
But today isn’t just another iteration.
Today sees the comic book storytelling tempest fully in the hands of a master narrator.
Today, DC Comics has reached back into the late 1990’s in an attempt to revisit the success they had when they originally purchased the Wildstorm Productions comic book imprint: it’s titles, it’s characters, and, to a large degree, one specific creator.
Under the stewardship of the often-brilliant Warren Ellis, The Wild Storm #1 (finally) makes its eagerly-anticipated debut!
The Wild Storm #1
Written By: Warren Ellis
Illustrated By: Jon Davis-Hunt
Published by: DC Comics
A quick recap for everyone, so we can all move forward from the same page:
Although some might be able to tell you the story more succinctly (or in more depth, depending on how much you want to know), Wildstorm Productions was a publishing company founded in part by fan-favourite artist, Jim Lee, in 1992. It was one of the founding studios that gave rise to Image Comics – the publisher that all creator-owned comic book writers and artists currently flock to. (They are producing such great titles!)
Wildstorm itself published a number of popular titles back in the day, including WildC.A.T.S., Stormwatch and the Authority. It even gave rise to an off-shoot imprint called America’s Best Comics (ABC), which was curated by legendary writer Alan Moore, who also wrote many of the imprint’s monthly books.
Briefly put, in early 1999, DC Comics bought out Wildstorm, its titles and characters, and then folded the imprint in 2010. Flash forward through DC’s various New52, Flashpoint and Rebirth initiatives and Wildstorm is now getting a new lease on life – with titles existing in its own “Wildstorm”continuity outside of the proper DC Universe.
And that continuity is being curated by Warren Ellis, who is also writing the flagship series, The Wild Storm.
Ellis was one of the original writers in the old Wildstorm series of publications, chiefly on three acclaimed series: The Authority, Stormwatch and Planetary (a personal favourite).
The Wild Storm #1 sets off a longer-form story that promises to run in a series of Wildstorm-universe titles over the next two years: secret agencies, agendas and power structures that start from the dawn of man and reach throughout our inner solar system. Joined by the fantastic visual artist, Jon Davis-Hunt (2000 AD, Clean Room), The Wild Storm brings new iterations of classic characters: Grifter, Voodoo, the Engineer and Jenny Sparks into the twenty-first century. And new Wildstorm-universe versions of Apollo and Midnighter are not far behind. Might the characters of Planetary be on the storytelling periphery as well?
Knowing Warren Ellis though his writing, and being a fan of his works (the very recent Karnak and Moon Knight for Marvel Comics, for example), The Wild Storm will be a fantastical sci-fi, conspiracy-theory, superhero romp through the conscious and subconscious mind of human history.
And The Wild Storm #1 is the place where the tempest all starts.
So brave the wind, the rain and the lightning of any storm you currently find yourself inside of, and make the run to your local comic book shop for The Wild Storm #1.
There is no safe harbour for this kind of excitement!