Saturday, October 13, 2012

NYCC 2012 Superman Panel

On Thursday evening, the New 52 Superman panel was held at the New York Comic Con. The panel members included editors Matt Idelson and Eddie Berganza; writers Grant Morrison, Sholly Fisch, Andy Diggle, Scott Snyder, and Mike Johnson; and artists Tony Daniel, Mahmud Asrar, and Jim Lee.

The panel didn't necessarily shed a lot of light on the long term stories for the characters, instead hinting at some of the issues in the near future. As the end of Grant Morrison's Action Run, the 'H'El on Earth' crossover, and the beginning of Diggle's and Snyder's runs on their respective books are all shrouded a bit in mystery, there weren't many specifics given. Instead we got something of an overview of the creators approach to the characters as well as some sprinkled in hints and reveals.

There are a couple of nice transcriptions/reviews of the panel over on Newsarama:
and at Comic Book Resources:

As always, I recommend reading their entire coverage to get the full scope of the panel. That said, there were some parts of the panel which stuck out which I thought I would highlight here.

First, as the Morrison run on Action is ending, some blurbs from the master himself"

From Newsarama
Action Comics #15 will feature a "Super Doomsday," said Morrison, a combination of the two characters that makes Superman's life a bad place to be.

"I was originally going to just do 6 issues, but when I had started I realized I needed 17 issues to back my story up. I really enjoyed doing the one-offs, if I could change anything at all, I think I'd try to do every issue as a complete story, I think that's really fun especially for Superman"

 From CBR:

A fan then wanted to know if in the New 52 Universe Superman had died.
“Yes!” Morrison said as the audience laughed, adding that he felt that entire period still happened and he wrote with that in mind.

I think we all knew when we read Action Comics #9 that the 'Super Doomsday' abomination of Superman would eventually break free from between the wavelengths where that Earth's Superman placed him. I think Morrison wrote that faceless, mass marketed, broken Superman as an indictment against the current comic world. That issue, only the pure good of Superman could defeat him. I hope that in this issue, Morrison cements the current DCnU Superman as that same sort of pillar of hope.

The comment on rethinking his run as a possible series of one-off stories is interesting and smacks a bit of All-Star Superman which was separate stories with an overlying plot. This Action run has, at times, had the magical feeling of All-Star Superman despite being rooted in continuity.

And lastly, I like that Morrison says outright that this Superman has died (I assume by Doomsday). There is a lot of history in the years between this Action run and 'the present'. I wonder if Morrison feels about Superman the way he does with Batman ... that all the comic stories have 'happened.'

From CBR:

To a fan who wanted to know about the evolution of Superman/Clark Kent over the years, Fisch said that to him the most important part of Superman is, “He gives everyone someone to look up to,” Fisch said, adding, “He’s a good guy, and that, to me, is the core of it...when you come down to it, he’s a hero.”

There is also some stuff from current back-up feature writer and Action Annual #1 writer Sholly Fisch as well as some spiffy pages from the latter. Fisch and Morrison have gelled nicely, meshing the back-ups and main features. Here, Fisch echoes what I think about Superman. It probably is why I have enjoyed his stories so much!

On to the Supergirl news!

From Newsarama:
Berganza started talking about Superman and "H'EL ON EARTH." which will feature the Justice League coming to help out on something "really big." "We have Supergirl coming in to help... or not. They're not one big happy Super family, and you'll see a lot of changes there in this story."


Supergirl will meet up with The Flash in her tie-in issues, which Johnson says will be called "The Fastest Girl on Earth".  Asrar said he was really excited that the first guest star is The Flash, he's "really excited to draw the Flash and superspeed."

I have to take almost everything Berganza and Idelson say about Supergirl with a grain of salt and some antacid. They always seem to imply that she isn't a nice character or a hero. She's here to help ... or is she. These are the same folks who touted her alienation/isolation/lack of affection ... none of which has been a depressing dominant feature of the main book. Even the jab about the unhappy family seems off the mark. I hope that in this instance they are overstating things again. They haven't known the tone of the book up to now ... so I'm not worried.

And seeing Asrar draw the Flash will be a treat. Even on this cover, the elongated appearance of the lead leg on Barry implies speed. Great.

I do like that the JLA gets involved in H'El because something big enough to get the whole Super Family attention should get theirs too.

From CBR:

Speaking about “Supergirl’s” role in “H’el On Earth,” Johnson said that Kara, “Desperately wants to cling to the life she had...but we’re also going to evolve her relationship with Superman, which has been up to this point mainly punching.”

Hmmm ... doesn't this just sound better. An 'evolving' relationship. That is different than 'not helping'. It means moving towards a better place.

From Newsarama:

"I'm excited to flex some different creative muscles, with people flying through the air, bursting through buildings... coming out during the day, I haven't done a lot of that stuff in a long time," said Daniel referring to his long stint on Batman titles.

From CBR:

“[Superman] will do absolutely everything he can, and that’s absolutely inspirational. You don’t have to move planets to be inspirational, you just need to do what you can.”
Andy Diggle and Tony Daniels talked a bit about their work on Action Comics once Morrison moves on. Both seem excited about working on the book (as seen in prior interviews). The inspiration quite also reassures me that Diggle isn't going to take this to a dark place.

Of course the biggest news was the 'surprise announcement' that Scott Snyder and Jim Lee are headlining another Superman book, as yet unnamed. Snyder is the big gun at DC right now, making Batman the best selling title. And Lee is ... well ... Lee. So this book should be huge.

From Newsarama

Lee said, "2013 is the 75th anniversary of Superman, so we were talking about adding an additional book to the family. We were waiting for the right creative team to come along - I didn't hire myself I promise."
Snyder said "We're going to try to deliver to you the biggest and most kick-ass Superman story we can. I'm writing the features and the back-ups. It'll be big and gamechanging but have a lot of intimacy, a lot of American History. This is the Superman story I'd tell if I could only tell one before they kicked me right off."
I am sure more interviews are around the corner but it was interesting to see these early 'rah rah' comments.

As for me, having missed the boat on Batman, I can't wait to read what Snyder brings to the Superman family.

I didn't want to crib from these sites too much. There is a lot of info on the Action Annual, Superboy, and Superman Earth One Vol 2 in these reviews of the panel so folks should go there for news on those topics.

Any way you slice it, it should be a big big year for the Supers.


valerie21601 said...

It sounds like it's a real mixed bag for the Super family this upcoming year.

I dearly hope they aren't going to do will Supergirl be a villain or a hero story line. The way the synopsis are reading and the sneak peeks have me really worried.

Unknown said...

The new 52 Supergirl has been fantastic! ...easily the best of the Super family of books by far. I am excited for the new Superman tile with Snyder and Lee but geeez DC, DO NOT screw up something that is clickin' away just fine. All this news has gotten me nervous also.

Its tough to imagine Flash being portrayed as the deviant character so does that mean they're going to make Kara look like the accidental deviant by default?! "Silly young and dumb Kara from another planet ends up doing evil bidding unwittingly because she is naive and immature and couldn't fathom fully the overall issue at hand." Ughhh

Yes she is comparatively young, perhaps one of the youngest superheros in the DCnU, but I love it when they have her doing clever and calculating things when she melted the integral part of Tyco's space station right at his feet or found the weak spot in that nano technology suit ...a clever Kara is a cool Kara and a more interesting Supergirl if you ask me.

(And other than that bust statue, it would be nice if we could have a head-to-toe New 52 Supergirl figure or something...)

Anonymous said...

Anyone wanna bet that the main outcome of the "H'el on Earth"storyline izzat the public will completely distrust &fear Supergirl once and for all a'la "The Incredible Hulk"?
Keep in mind that for some creatives Supergirl's sinking metaphoric fortunes only burnishes Kal El's sterling reputation.
Just sayin'


valerie21601 said...

When we finallysee the Supergirl part of the H'El storyline we'll know for sure. I get the feeling if they do go the will she or won't she be evil route or the gravely mistrusted hero route like Anj suggested.

There could be a serious sales slump. Many older fans have lived through it and don't want to do it again.

So far it looks like there will be three issues of the Supergirl series dedicated to it. If I remember a Newarama article right. The writers don't know how many issues it will take to tell their tale.

I get the feeling if they keep doing excessive crossovers between the three series just to figure out what is going on in their main favorite title people will get upset and drop it.

valerie21601 said...

OOOPS!!! Sorry, I meant JF not Anj.

Anj said...

Thanks for the comments.

My hope is that 'H'El on Earth is a turning point for Kara the other way, a time when she finally admits Krypton (and its ways) are gone and it is time to embrace Earth.

I certainly hope the Hulk angle doesn't become reality!!

Martin Gray said...

On the one hand, I'd like Morrison's 'everything happened' angle for Superman; on the other, I never liked the Doomsday story, even though the next couple of years were superb, and they gave us Kon-El. Blimey, it's not like Superman even died, he just snoozed underwater and grew a mullet (a fate far, far worse than death).

I agree that Idelson and berganza should no longer worry us, I reckon Kara is going to get generally sunnier over the next couple of years. And then, please, no more lengthy Superman Family crossovers - the new Kon-El, especially, needs time to develop away from the other Super and teen books.

Anj said...

I agree that Idelson and berganza should no longer worry us, I reckon Kara is going to get generally sunnier over the next couple of years.

I swear I don't know if they read the book sometimes. Maybe they are told to make it sound edgier than it is. I would hope they wouldn't be so pandering.