Saturday, November 29, 2008

Dan Didio Interview


There is a new feature on Newsarama in which fans can submit questions for DC Editor-in-chief Dan Didio. Newarama then picks the top 20 and interviews Didio around them.

Now there are a lot of Didio-haters out there. And I have to admit, it sometimes feels like DC is on shaky ground, both economically (as Marvel continues to dominate the market) and creatively as internal continuity seems to be nonexistent. So, I think it is pretty big of Didio to potentially face the slings and arrows of an angry mob. Here is the link for the last session.

http://www.newsarama.com/comics/110826-Didio3.html

As always, it is worth reading the whole piece; here are the Supergirl relevant questions.

1. Dan, let’s start this time with Superman. New Krypton is halfway through, and as you’ve said, the larger storyline will be felt through the end of 2010. Let’s talk about creative teams – are we going to see the same teams remain on the books for this two year stretch?

Dan DiDio: Actually, no. There will be some changes in the creative teams involving Superman. Let’s take it from the top – actually, with the one book that won’t see any changes: The Superman series will be keeping James Robinson and Renato Guedes will be the team on that title through 2009, but as the story begins in March, we should subtitle the story, “World Without Superman.” That’s the story James will be telling, and he will be leading the charge on the Superman title itself.
It had been hinted at, but now confirmed that Superman will be leaving his titles for a bit of time shortly after New Krypton wraps up. It seems like an odd time to do this since the super-titles have been getting such good press recently and are relevant again. Why chase off the new readers interested in Superman by offering a title without the main character? While it may have worked with 'Funeral For a Friend', I don't know if the market is stable enough right now to try this sort of thing. Still, at least Robinson and Guedes are staying on. Robinson made the Guardian interesting in his Adventure Comics one-shot, and I have never found the Guardian interesting.

Of course, if the story is good, I'll be happy. But I can imagine a migration away from the title by some readers.



In Action, we’re going to see some major changes – Superman will not be featured in Action Comics. The stars of Action will be the new team of Flamebird and Nightwing. Flamebird is a character we’ve seen, but this is the first time we’re seeing her in costume. Nightwing is a character that we’ve known in the DCU for a little while, but he’s new to the Nightwing costume as well. The team on that book will be Greg Rucka with Eddy Barrows. Eddy will be moving over from Teen Titans.

An Action Comics being headlined Flamebird and Nightwing? I am also a bit wary about this. I like Rucka's writing style and I think Eddy Barrows is great. But why disrupt this title, which has been the strongest of the super-titles?

We still don't know who Flamebird and Nightwing are ... although by then we should. At least Didio dropped some hints.

Flamebird is someone we have seen before but not in costume. That takes Linda Danvers off the list I guess. Someone here mentioned it possibly being Lana Lang which is a bit more interesting choice now given that comment, but I still doubt it is Lana.

And Nightwing is someone we have known for in the DCU for a little while but he is new to the Nightwing costume. Does that make Conner more or less likely. I think less likely.


Next after that, Supergirl will keep its team, with Sterling Gates and Jamal Igle.

Whew! At least we don't have to worry about another creative team upheaval in Kara's title.



We’ll be introducing a new series called Superman: New Krypton which will be written by Andrew Kreisberg and drawn by Pete Woods.


A New Krypton title? Well, that means at least some of the Kryptonians survive. Maybe a title based on a Rokyn like world? I have never read anything by Kreisberg so I cannot comment on him. But I like Pete Woods.


The big question is where Geoff Johns and Gary Frank are going. They will be doing Superman: Secret Origin as a miniseries coming up later in the year. We decided to run that as its own miniseries, different from what Geoff just did in Green Lantern. It gives them a little more time to work it, they don’t have to struggle against the ongoing schedule, and it won’t throw off the triangles on the covers which keep track of the story. They’ll be doing the definitive origin of Superman as we’ve seen it all take place, and incorporating the changes that we’ve seen or suggested since Infinite Crisis.

Superman: Secret Origins huh? And as a mini-series no less. Well I am glad that Johns and Frank haven't left the character all together. This might be DC's way of capitalizing on the successes of the super-titles now. By running this as a mini and Flamebird/Nightwing in Action (as opposed to Origin in Action and Nightwing/Flamebird as a mini) they might sell a few more books.

Newarama just posted the 6 covers. Stunning. For some reason, I really like the Daily Planet one. Here is the link to view the covers: http://www.newsarama.com/php/multimedia/album.php?gid=727

As someone who still thinks of Byrne's Man of Steel as the definitive origin (despite multiple arcs since then re-defining Krypton, etc) I am looking forward to this greatly. Hopefully this will streamline Superman's backstory enough to clarify what's what.

I am really amazed at how expansive John's touch in the DCU is becoming. Superman, Green Lantern, the Flash (with the upcoming Rebirth), JSA, Hawkman. Unbelievable.


I haven't seen one writer impact that many of DC's main characters since the early 70's when Denny O'Neil revamped Superman (the Sand Superman/no Kryptonite arc), Batman (back to Dark Knight roots), Wonder Woman (de-powered and in white jumpsuit) and Green Lantern/Green Arrow (social commentary) all around the same time.

Incredible!


2. A question that we can ask then – Superman: New Krypton – what’s that all about?

DD: Andrew Kreisberg – he was a writer on Eli Stone and is the writer on Green Arrow/Black Canary - he’s coming on board to join the team to tell the story that focuses on much of what’s happening with the 100,000 Kryptonians that were released from New Kandor.

NRAMA: Sounds like it would have an Astro City or Top 10 kind of feel – a story about a society of super-powered individuals...
DD: It would, but it has none of that [laughs]. The great thing about this is that with all the changes taking place, with the introduction of Greg and Andrew into the group, and Geoff concentrating at least for the time being on Secret Origin, we’re able to maintain a consistency of story. With James on the lead book, he’s been involved since day one in the New Krypton story, and he’s really taking charge and leading the whole direction of the Superman line during this time.

Well, that explains who the writer is. I am glad that there is still a guiding force from the super-team like Robinson around to make sure there is at least a consistent feel to the titles.



3. Moving to Supergirl for a moment...issue #35 basically reset the character, and is showing us the “real” story of what’s been going on with her. What’s your take on what Sterling is doing with the character?

DD: Sterling is one of the rising stars here at DC. You always get the question of where are the new writers coming from, and who are the talents we’re looking to grow, and Sterling is definitely one of them. We just put him under an exclusive contract as well, because we have a lot of belief and faith in his abilities. He’s done a great job with Supergirl - he’s been able to take what’s been going on in the Superman books and bring that level of focus and depth to Supergirl and I feel as if he’s really solidified the direction of that series. The great part also in New Krypton, we’ve had the introduction of Supergirl’s parents in Kandor – that really helps to build a strong supporting cast for that series, and Sterling has a great handle on what to do with that book. He’s the writer for the future of Supergirl.

Congratulations to Mr. Gates for scoring the exclusive tag. I am glad to hear that Didio has such faith in his abilities on Supergirl because I have been very pleased with the first 2 issues.

Now is not the time to rest on laurels though. The first two issues of Supergirl under the new team were basically the reset button. Now we need to move forward. I am really looking forward to the Superwoman arc as it is sort of the first pure Supergirl storyline we will see from the new team.

4. Getting back to one of your announcements - Superman: Secret Origin. You called it the “definitive origin,” and I’m sure that already has some fans rolling their eyes. Superman: Birthright was a few years back and said to be the same thing, and there have been tweaks and adjustments in the line before that. Can you give us some clues on what makes this origin “definitive?”


DD: With the Superman books following Infinite Crisis, we made some suggestions as to some of the changes that might be occurring within Superman’s origin and who he is. There were a lot of things that have been changed over a period of time, and what Geoff has done, what Geoff always does so well is that he incorporates so many of the various aspects of Superman’s origin to what I feel is really a clean, definitive take on the character as he exists today, and more importantly, how we will continue to present him in the years to come.
The John Byrne changes were important and strong when they occurred back in the ‘80s, and I feel that Geoff’s origin is going to make that same imprint now, for 2009 and past that.

Well, at least all the minor changes and inconsistencies are noted and hopefully will be dealt with. I have been floored with the excellence of the Johns/Frank team, so I don't expect anything less from them here.

Anyways, there is a lot to look forward to in the coming months, so expect a whole lot of reviews here.

7 comments:

Heath Edwards said...

this was an exciting interview. i'm most excited about greg rucka coming back to superman. i really enjoyed his previous run, and hope he can bring back the level of seriousness he brought to the superman title, at the time...
i'm a bit concerned, too, about the 'superman: new krypton' title, as i've never read anything by kreisberg, but i've enjoyed 'eli stone', and pete woods does a good superman. i hope some more of the idea behind the title comes out, as it does sound very vague...
all in all, i am looking forward to this coming year in superman :)...

TalOs said...

GREAT RAO ON A CRACKER!!!

Anj, dude! You're gonna be so flat out come reviewing all of these new Super family themed titles on top of our main girl's own that you wont know whether you're coming or going ah! I mean, YIKES!!!

Anonymous said...

I dunno, I can't see "Nightwing and Flamebird" carrying Action Comics for very long unless the artwork and writing are superlative from the git-go. It isn't like the team has this huge untapped fan base that DC wants to bring in from the cold.
As for the revival of Adventure Comics all I ask is that Supergirl make a guest appearance or two...just for old time's sake.
I'd ask for the red shorts and slippers but I know that is just too too much.
:D

John Feer

Anj said...

this was an exciting interview. i'm most excited about greg rucka coming back to superman. i really enjoyed his previous run, and hope he can bring back the level of seriousness he brought to the superman title, at the time...

Thanks for the post.

You have mentioned Rucka's run on Superman in the past and I have to admit I still haven't read any of it.

What arcs would you recommend by him ... I'll try to score the trades.

Anj said...

Anj, dude! You're gonna be so flat out come reviewing all of these new Super family themed titles on top of our main girl's own that you wont know whether you're coming or going ah! I mean, YIKES!!!

I suppose I will continue to review the titles most relevant to Kara. My guess is that the Nightwing/Flamebird title will have some links. And the Superman titles will as well.

And, should Zor-El/Alura be part of the New Krypton title, I suppose I will review that too.

So only Secret Origins has no Kara feel to it ... but it is done by the spectacular Johns/Frank team. So I will probably review that.

Yikes ... I guess I am going to be reviewing a lot.

Anj said...

As for the revival of Adventure Comics all I ask is that Supergirl make a guest appearance or two...just for old time's sake.
I'd ask for the red shorts and slippers but I know that is just too too much.


Thanks for the post.

I'll take the shorts/slippers look over the other variant costumes every time.

It will be interesting to see if Kara has any role with the new LoSH.

Heath Edwards said...

Thanks for the post.
You have mentioned Rucka's run on Superman in the past and I have to admit I still haven't read any of it. What arcs would you recommend by him ... I'll try to score the trades.


greg rucka's run has been collected mostly in the following trades:
Superman: Unconventional Warfare
Superman: That Healing Touch
Superman: Sacrifice
Superman: Ruin Revealed

though there are different storylines, the whole thing can be read as one big epic, which was great, as it didn't seem anyone was doing that sort of thing at the time (in the titles i was reading). except for 'sacrifice', which is an infinite crisis tie-in, the books really meld together, and rucka did some great stuff with his characters, even though he seemed to focus on new ones...