Wednesday, February 28, 2018

A History Of Recent Supergirl Cancellations - Always At The Wrong Time

It was recently revealed that Supergirl #20 would be the last issue of the current title.

The book, like Super Sons, has been cancelled, one of the casualties of Brian Michael Bendis taking over the Superman books. Much like John Byrne, Bendis was taking the reins, wresting control away from the current creators, and breaking away to a new direction.

For fans of the current creative teams and the super-books, which is a fair number of us given sales numbers, this has been a lamentable decision.


DC's Clark Bull came out to reassure fans of these books that plans are in place and to be patient.

But I have to tell you, this makes zero sense to me. Because the Supergirl book has finally found its groove. The book has been excellent over the last several months, after writers Steve Orlando and Jody Houser tightened things up.



The book initially was trying to be all things to all people. Supergirl as DEO agent, as student, as adopted daughter of Eliza and Jeremiah Danvers, as CatCo employee. There were too many ingredients and not enough 'egg' to hold the comic omelette together. Moreover, the first arc involved the Cyborg Superman and seemed like a step backwards. And the Phantom King arc was a bit too confusing for me.

But with these in the past, Orlando and Houser concentrated on student Kara and inspirational Supergirl. She chooses Earth to inspire people and to be inspired. She'll always continue to help.

It finally was all clicking!

So of course the book is cancelled.

History tells me, I shouldn't be surprised.


Why doesn't it surprise me? Because when you look back at the last three Supergirl titles, the book was cancelled just when it was flourishing. It is like DC hates prosperity when it comes to Supergirl. Just when the story is coming around, just when the characters is finding her niche and being the hero she should be, the plug gets pulled.

Let's go back to the prior title, Supergirl volume six, the new 52 Supergirl.

Now this title suffered at the beginning with Kara being an Earth-hating loner who shunned Superman and wanted to live alone on the ocean floor. Suffice it to say, those early issues didn't work for long term Kara fans.

But the last year of the book was just about perfect. So, of course it got cancelled.

Looking at Supergirl #40, writer K. Perkins and Mike Johnson have her become a leader at a universal school for young leaders. She is worthy of her position, an inspiration for the heroes around her.

She is suddenly not just a hero on Earth but a galactic hero!

This was after Tony Bedard and Charles Soule used a 'Supergirl as Red Lantern' arc to surprisingly turn things around for the character.

Again, after years of Kara wallowing in anger, she was consumed by rage, only to come out the other side redeemed. In Supergirl #33, before heading off to the Crucible school, Kara has purged herself of the Red Ring, defeated the last World Killer, and finally declared Earth her new home.

See ... in that title she went from a surly Supergirl to a hero. Perkins had set up a supporting cast. Kara was back on Earth, her new home she swore to defend.

So DC pulled the plug.


Remember, that was the end of the New 52 Supergirl book.

There was a whole universe that ended before that to clear the decks for the universal reboot.

Sadly, the Supergirl volume five book was firing on all cylinders just prior to the New 52. So, of course, DC cancelled the book. (Okay, they cancelled all books.)


Supergirl #67 was written by Kelly Sue DeConnick (just at the beginning of her illustrious career). Linda Lang was a student at Stanhope Academy. She had made some fun, carefree friends. She was embracing her life as a student and she was definitely a hero in the world. She was part of the JLA.

Even DeConnick worried that people would forget this Supergirl because she had come so far. Because this was a self-motivated and independent Supergirl, being the hero she should be.

So of course DC cancelled the book. (I know ... I know ... they cancelled all books.)


But remember where that Supergirl had come from.

Remember that this title started out with a Dark Supergirl book. It devolved into 'crazy Zor-El, kill Kal-El' Joe Kelly nonsense, a run on the book that ultimately insulted Supergirl fans, a whole issue devoted to showing a 'perfect' Supergirl that Kelly insisted no one wanted to read.

Then, thankfully, Sterling Gates and Jamal Igle came on board and righted the ship. It was their still-influential run that brought Supergirl back to where she should be. She was a hero. Her life wasn't perfect but she loved her life. She was a smiling hero, still finding her way in the world. In their last issue, Supergirl #59, Supergirl even impressed her nemesis Cat Grant.

Yes, that Supergirl book had gone over 2 years with a heroic Kara involved in solid stories. So of course, DC abandoned the book.

But let's go back even further.


What about Supergirl volume four?

Well, I loved this book even if it featured the Earth angel/Linda Danvers/Matrix hybrid Supergirl.

But even this book had its ups and downs. I still contend that the first 50 issues of this book are one of the best long-form story arcs that exist in comic. It is a complicated, religious, quasi-Vertigo look at the place of faith in a world filled with super-heroes mixed in with a redemption tale.

After that first 50 issues, writer Peter David gave us a 2 year yarn, a sort of sequel to the first mega-arc, which seemed to drag.

But in the last 5 issues, David gave us Many Happy Returns an arc which wowed readers, sold out, had early Ed Benes art, and re-established some Supergirl lore. Things were clicking.

So, of course, DC cancelled the book.


Many Happy Returns brought a squeaky clean Silver Age Supergirl back into the DCU, teaming her up with the more mature, slightly jaded Linda Danvers. Imagine Super Sons done as Super Girls, where the difference between the characters both provide excellent story-telling moments as well as force the characters to do some introspection.

This storyline crackled. Older Supergirl fans got to see the original Kara back again. It seemed like the book was grabbing new readers.

So, once again, just when the creative juices are flowing and the characters were done right, DC cancelled the book.

Look, who knows what is going to come out of this latest 'reboot'. Who knows if Supergirl will have her own book? Who knows what the next creative team thinks of Kara. It just irks me that just when a Supergirl book feels right, the powers-that-be kick it to the curb.

I shouldn't be surprised ... should I.

36 comments:

Anonymous said...

Don't forget Supergirl's second book. She's being written as a mature, self-assured, independant woman finding out things about herself. She's handled by a competent writer who knows the character and respects her history. She's supported by a good supporting cast and bumps into villains who actually left their mark (Reactron, Psi, the Gang, Blackstar...)...

So of course the book is cancelled.

Every time it looks like Supergirl is ready for great things, DC cancels and -sometimes- reboots the character, ruining her momentum, putting her supporting cast on a bus and erasing her history, ergo, her foundations. And then DC complains the character isn't a big-seller.

"a whole issue devoted to showing a 'perfect' Supergirl that Kelly insisted no one wanted to read"

... and who looked right like Silver Age Kara. I'm still wondering who we must owe that middle finger to. Kelly? Berganza?

"Look, who knows what is going to come out of this latest 'reboot'. Who knows if Supergirl will have her own book? Who knows what the next creative team thinks of Kara. It just irks me that just when a Supergirl book feels right, the powers-that-be kick it to the curb."

Truly irritating.

John (somewhere in England) said...

Back in the late '60s I used to read the Legion of Super Heroes in Adventure Comics. In 1969, with little advance warning, DC shunted the Legion into the back slot in Action Comics, a decision which eventually cost them the services of Jim Shooter. They moved Supergirl from Action Comics into Adventure Comics. From Action Comics the Legion were dumped into Superboy, which nearly killed them altogether. When DC published The Legion of Super Heroes Archives volume 9 KC Carlson, who wrote the forword, had to lean heavily on speculation as to why DC had treated the Legion as they had because there was no rational explanation.

I didn't realise at the time that the constant chopping and changing for no good reason was a sign of things to come. Nevertheless, on that occasion there was a happy outcome. Although I followed the Legion into Action Comics, I continued to buy Adventure Comics and quickly grew to like Kara Zor-el. That was when I became a Supergirl fan.

KET said...

"They moved Supergirl from Action Comics into Adventure Comics. From Action Comics the Legion were dumped into Superboy, which nearly killed them altogether."

Well, it was a time for a little experimentation, as the late 60s saw DC Comics losing Mort Weisinger as Super-books editor-at-large. New editors, writers and artists were coming in, and some of the long-standing IP was starting to looks stale in comparison to Marvel.

However, Supergirl turned out to be a sales disaster as the main feature in Adventure Comics, according to Jim Shooter. Much of the experimentation that occurred from midway towards the end of her run on the book were literally acts of desperation (such as the fan costume contest), which mostly failed to jump start sales in the long run. Of course, then the publisher made the mistake of shuffling Supergirl into her first misbegotten solo comics series, which lost its editor before the first issue had even hit the news stands.

Any signs of character stabilization wouldn't fully return to the Girl of Steel's output until The Superman Family series, when original stories of the various characters within began taking precedence over Silver Age reprints.

"Don't forget Supergirl's second book. She's being written as a mature, self-assured, independent woman finding out things about herself."

Well, to Paul Kupperberg's credit, he placed the character in a setting that he personally knew something about, which was the Chicago area. However, de-aging Kara Zor-El back to college level probably seemed like a character regression to readers at the time, as sales still stagnated. Daring New Adventures was originally cancelled by DC so they could fold Supergirl into a series that would see her share top billing with Superboy...but of course, other events came up which would dramatically change the course of the Girl of Steel's history as a character in significant ways.


KET

KET said...

"It finally was all clicking!

So of course the book is cancelled.

History tells me, I shouldn't be surprised."

Yup, there certainly is a recurring pattern regarding Supergirl at her comics publisher.

However, this time around, they can't really blame it on lack of sales for her current solo run. This time, it seems more like it's being put on the sidelines in order to draw attention to Bendis' arrival on the Superman line. Plus, there still seems like efforts are being made to incorporate elements from other media presentations (such as television and movies, as well as previous notable comics series) into the mix of new comics, in order to add some semblance of familiarity to the proceedings of present story-telling. in other words, they don't seem to be writing today's comics stories in a vacuum of their own making anymore.

SyFy's Krypton television series (which content-wise, seems geared to be a live action update on those old "World of Krypton" stories of yore) may also have something to do with what the revamp is up to. A proposed Metropolis TV series (by the folks who currently making Gotham) may also be an upcoming factor that's possibly being worked in. DC's present output doesn't seem just about the comics anymore.

KET

Gear said...

They couldn’t really blame the end of the Perkins/Johnson run on sales either, much like now they were in the mid-20k sales range then too. But like now, that run was cancelled for reasons outside of sales, and though we never were really told what those reasons were I always assumed it was the new TV show that left editorial confused about what they wanted to do.

For me the biggest frustration over the years is the lack of continuity, but not in the normal comic book definition but between runs. It’s the characters, scenarios, villains, and settings that are introduced, then tossed aside and never referenced again when the next run starts. Sometimes it’s as if the previous run never existed, and what we got was a soft reboot even if that’s not what it was called. It makes it hard to keep one’s enthusiasm up, and I know for a fact that a lot of fans of the character I talk to are lost when that happens due to the un-met expectations of those things never appearing again. Even having read Supergirl for so many years I still have that reaction. Where’s Reign, Siobhan, Michael, Crucible and the other students, the relationship with the Lanterns? Or for the pre-Flashpoint run Lana, Linda Lang, Lois, the students and college introduced by DeConnick? Enthusiasm wanes when all that is left behind, and readers drop away. I hope we’re not going to be asking the same questions about the current cast and storylines.

And all that ends to Supergirl continuing to have the reputation of not having a Rogues Gallery, friends, or a sense of place (Daily Planet, Batcave, Fortress, etc.) because they all go away, never to be seen again.

I’m going to try to keep an optimistic outlook, though the total lack of information about the book is frustrating. And I’ll read what they give me. But honestly, I’m not particularly interested in a book with her a co-star, or on a team, or as a baby-sitter to Jon and Damian, without a book of her own.

I hope they have a good plan, because I’ll still be on board. Just not with her being put in the DC Orphanage.

Again.

Anonymous said...

Yes, it's a big mess which hinders the characters. And the fault lays mainly with DC. In "Superman Family" #168, a fan's letter says: "I gratefully acknowledge that you've taken Supergirl out of her recent slump by giving her a new job and location, but I hope you won't stop there. Continue to build on Linda Danvers' side-- that side of her personality has been totally "blah" since Mike Sekowsky left the strip."

Obviously, his expectations weren't met; but his letter shows even back then, SG fans knew their heroine was being mishandled. And that was before Kara was banned for eighteen years instead of getting developed further like the rest of Superman's supporting cast. It's hard to care for new supporting characters, relationships and villains when long experience tells you they'll be chucked out during the next reboot, and maybe Kara herself or her familial relationships will be thrown away.

Bendis tells Kara'll be a big player (a statement which has caused furor among some fanboys over Superman Homepage who still think Superman should be the sole survivor and are even disgusted with her appearance in the new Man of Steel) and she's a blast to write. He can be exaggerating or lying, but he'll hopefully write her right and build up her relationships with Clark, Lois, Jon, Jimmy, Lana... which she lost when the universe was rebooted)

Anonymous said...

"...which has caused furor among some fanboys over Superman Homepage who still think Superman should be the sole survivor and are even disgusted with her appearance"

What kind of Superman "fan" believes that the canon version of Superman is Krypton's sole survivor? You would have to discard just about every version of Superman except a few years. Honestly my guess is that what they are really saying is "I'm a terrible person who doesn't want an empowered girl hero to be awesome as my male role model. I claim she should be erased due to to last survivor idea, but I really have no problem with Zod, Jor-El, the people of Kandor and the other heap of surviors who have been part of the Superman comics I claim to love."

KET said...

"But like now, that run was cancelled for reasons outside of sales, and though we never were really told what those reasons were I always assumed it was the new TV show that left editorial confused about what they wanted to do."

Looking at the time between the ending of that run, and the long wait before the Orlando run began (with Sterling Gates' Adventures of Supergirl series serving as a sort of stepping stone between them), I think it's perfectly justifiable to consider that DC editorial was simply waiting for the TV series to point them in the right direction....after all, they had largely been flailing with 'modernizing' Supergirl for so long that the character was becoming devoid of her iconic symbolism and stature at various times.

"It's hard to care for new supporting characters, relationships and villains when long experience tells you they'll be chucked out during the next reboot..."

It's certainly a common recurring issue with our heroine. Seems like every new creative team comes on board with the misplaced ideal of 'leaving their mark' on the character, when perhaps the better thought should be respect for Supergirl's already established place over the years as an original 'girl next door' heroic archetype.

"Bendis tells Kara'll be a big player..."

Well, let's hope so....otherwise, they'll have us Supergirl fans with LONG memories wondering what he did wrong, which unfortunately, includes a LONG list of comics creator and editorial casualties who couldn't keep up with the continuing evolution of the heroic female in modern society.

KET





Anj said...

Thanks for the great comments.

Hard to wrap my head around this. I can see the idea of letting Bendis get his feet wet. But why cancel? Why get a new team? That makes no sense. Put on a hiatus!

And yes, good answers for the other cancellations. But not great.

We’ll have to wait and see.

Martin Gray said...

Terrific piece, Anj, and some great comments. If only Kara had a champion at DC/Warner’s highest levels, Diane Nelson, say - someone to keep her profile high, squire her so she gets the attention the character deserves.

It’s pretty obvious that while individual creators such as Orlando or Perkins or Gates want to do well by the characters, they don’t have the power to protect her from circumstances outside her own ambit.

Anonymous said...

Well trust me I was there when Linda Danvers quit KSF-TV in San Francisco in Adventure #424 for the Imperial Glory of a self titled comic that was naught but a doorway to oblivion.
Sometimes the enemy of the perfect is the good...and once again a "perfect creative" is getting in the way of a good book with a loyal fanbase.
Stops and starts that stop again are pretty much the hallmark of the character by now, I begin to think we need to somehow make this work for us...how I cannot yet say.

JF

William Ashley Vaughan said...

I'm hoping that Bendis at least keeps the Danvers as Supergirl's parents. If it were up to me, the new Supergirl/Titans plot would be a slightly older and more experienced Supergirl-two or three years older and in college-forming a new Titans team to combat a menace uncovered by the DEO extensive enough to require a team to oppose it. After triumphing, the team would undertake a new mission-to train the heroes of tomorrow. Needless to say, this would be a Supergirl who would have served in the Legion of Superheroes in the interim between the old and the new series and now has experience as part of a team. Everything in the Orlando run would still be in continuity. Ben would work as a scientist for the DEO under Shay Veritas. He would also be the DEO liason with the Titans and still Supergirl's boyfriend. The team would be sponsored by the DEO with Supergirl as the leader.
I could be wrong, but I suspect that that Bendis will incorporate the Orlando and some of the New 52 Supergirl continuity into Man of Steel and then build on both going forward.

Carey said...

There is one piece of potential optimism in the continuation of the Supergirl: Rebirth story: Cyborg Rebirth. Cyborg was supposedly cancelled with it's January issue, #20. But it is continuing in April but is continuing in April with new numbering. From what i understand, there has been no official confirmation that Supergirl is cancelled, simply that it won't be available in May and that Orlando has wrapped up the story he intended to tell that started in the Supergirl Rebirth launch. And Orlando's co-writer, Jody Houser, has been very silent on the issue. Considering the specials being used to wrap up the current Superman and Action arcs in May to clear way for the Bendis relaunch, is there a possibility that Supergirl is on hiatus and will return after Man of Steel ends so as not to distract from what Bendis intends for the Superman edge of the DC universe? (Or, indeed, because DC doesn't know what his plans are at the moment)

Having said all that, there is little evidence to suggest Cyborg's relaunch isn't some kind of mini-series that DC thinks would sell better as a continuation, but at least it's a clue that things may look up for Kara. Or maybe I'm being wilfully optimistic.

Really nice article on Supergirl's cancellations over the years. The only thing I'd add is that Supergirl, like our other mutual favourite, the Legion of Superheroes, has always had the misfortune of being the subservient partner to Superman's comics and, more importantly, its editorial office and primary writer. So even when there haven't been cancellations we still have their story arcs being affected by what is happening with him. In the Legions case, it's the absence of Superboy and the tortuous reboots that incurred as a result. In Supergirl its the absence of any other survivors of Krypton from the same period, followed by the New Krypton behemoth a few years back (which was made readable for me purely by the genius of Gates and Igle).

Carey said...

Oops, my previous post was supposed to say Cyborg is continuing with its former numbering. Sorry for the brainfritz

Professor Feetlebaum said...

Thanks for the (somewhat depressing) history lesson. If and when DC decides to start another Supergirl title, maybe fans should place bets on how long it will last before the inevitable cancellation. If past record is any indication, it won't be long!

Or, to briefly sum up Supergirl's comic history: 1974-cancelled; 1984-cancelled; 2003-cancelled; 2011-cancelled; 2015-cancelled; 2018-cancelled.

Remember the little signs that would pop up in Tex Avery cartoons?

MONOTONOUS, ISN'T IT?

And don't forget DC DOUBLE COMICS (Supergirl and Superboy) which was cancelled before it got started.

This latest cancellation would be easier to take if sales had been bad. I would not be surprised if all this has hurt the character over the years. Potential new readers might be reluctant to buy a new Supergirl comic if they expect it to be axed any time at all. Or they might perceive Supergirl as a "loser" character who can't sustain her own title.

Hopefully, we'll soon get the word from DC as to what their intentions are regarding Kara. Maybe after Bendis's Man of Steel series is over.

Anonymous said...

"What kind of Superman "fan" believes that the canon version of Superman is Krypton's sole survivor? You would have to discard just about every version of Superman except a few years."

Exactly.

The "Superman Homepage" site is inhabited by Post-Crisis fanboys who hate Kara for "taking Superman's uniqueness away from him" and make a ton of excuses for disliking her such like being "Superman 2.0" or "annoying"... which is funny because if they really think she's isn't different from Superman then they're implying Superman is annoying.

The funny part is when they state they don't mind Kara In-Ze or Linda Danvers for being "different" when they are based on Kara per Bruce Timm and Peter David's statements.

"Considering the specials being used to wrap up the current Superman and Action arcs in May to clear way for the Bendis relaunch, is there a possibility that Supergirl is on hiatus and will return after Man of Steel ends so as not to distract from what Bendis intends for the Superman edge of the DC universe? (Or, indeed, because DC doesn't know what his plans are at the moment)"

Let's hope that is the case and Kara's book is merelt taking a hiatus.

"This latest cancellation would be easier to take if sales had been bad. I would not be surprised if all this has hurt the character over the years. Potential new readers might be reluctant to buy a new Supergirl comic if they expect it to be axed any time at all. Or they might perceive Supergirl as a "loser" character who can't sustain her own title."

I agree fully.

Anonymous said...

"Bendis tells Kara'll be a big player"

Spoken more or less like every solicitation. Diamond Previews makes you salivate over EVERY issue, right? Designed to tempt. Every character and every story is made to sound critical. You'd spend many hundreds of dollars a month if you really believed all the stuff that is promised.

No character that only makes appearances in team-up books is a big player, and we won't be happy if Supergirl doesn't continue in her own book.

The problem is, with all that is said to be on his plate at DC, Bendis can't possibly have time to write a Supergirl title, and DC may not want to risk writing an inconsistent version of Kara until it's clear what the Bendis take on her is. And it may take him six months to a year to develop the character enough for editorial to be ready to give her solo title to another writer.

Martin Gray said...

A depressing thought, but reasonable - remember how the New 52 Superman creative teams had to keep their wheels spinning while Grant Morrison worked out the backstory in Action Comics? That book was hobbled from the off.

Anonymous said...

This blog post has been noticed in Reddit:

https://www.reddit.com/r/Supergirl/comments/80w6un/a_history_of_recent_supergirl_cancellations/

Anonymous said...

While that tweet which stated that we should loop Supergirl with the rumours regarding Titans and teen Titans, I am not sure how to think about it- will she be looped in with the Titans? Or is it implying that Supergirl will merge with the superman books, just like Titans and teen Titans will. Regardless, team affiliations are good, but for me, solo titles are better

This post really made me sad, cause it's true, something or the other always happens to her book, especially when it has hit its stride and more often than not it has got to do with Superman. Bendis has a history of being inclusive of female characters and for bringing in more diversity, so I hope, that he works whatever magic spell he has for DC's sake.

While going through the solicitations, I noticed that legion is being rebooted (all courtesy of the tvshow) and maybe Supergirl will make an appearance there as well, but I am afraid that they will make her permanent and thus remove any impact that she may have on the present.

KET said...

Okay, back again for a few replies:

"Hard to wrap my head around this. I can see the idea of letting Bendis get his feet wet. But why cancel? Why get a new team? That makes no sense. Put on a hiatus!"

Well, the fact is that DC HASN'T put out any official 'FINAL ISSUE' mark on the current Supergirl run. Click-bait sites always want immediate feedback, so they're usually overly quick to immediately jump to conclusions. Carey is correct in that the publisher has merely taken the book off of a regular schedule at present, and that Steve Orlando will be wrapping up his time writing the book. So it's entirely possible that DC may have a new creative team being lined up; but they're not ready to make any announcements yet, until Bendis gets going with the Man Of Steel mini-series. Seems to be the most logical situation, given what we know at present.

"It’s pretty obvious that while individual creators such as Orlando or Perkins or Gates want to do well by the characters, they don’t have the power to protect her from circumstances outside her own ambit."

Unfortunately, this is often true in regards to comics writers, as artists usually get more sway on what content is displayed the comics they work on. However, being that it is a collaborative process, who is responsible for what isn't going to be cut and dried, so to speak....editors have to clear the stories for eventual publication through higher-ups as well.

"I could be wrong, but I suspect that that Bendis will incorporate the Orlando and some of the New 52 Supergirl continuity into Man of Steel and then build on both going forward."

I am optimistic that this is the probable scenario that will emerge, since Bendis' revamp success will be dependent on how it fits in with the rest of the comics DCU already still being published.

"While that tweet which stated that we should loop Supergirl with the rumours regarding Titans and teen Titans, I am not sure how to think about it- will she be looped in with the Titans?"

Strongly suspecting that it's merely Bleeding Cool click-bait speculation, given that Greg Berlanti's Titans TV series is apparently 'the crown jewel' draw for DC's upcoming streaming service. Certainly, there's been a LOT of great casting buzz going on about it in the last couple of weeks (meaning Rapaport Casting is doing stellar work once again). Can't really see much benefit in combining Supergirl with Titans in comics form again, as the properties probably won't ever cross over in other media (since the latter isn't a CW endeavor). Different DC editorial offices as well.


KET




KET said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
KET said...

This news just in: DC is coming to SXSW in Austin, TX, March 9–18. One of the main features will be a celebration of Superman's 80th Anniversary, with Jim Lee, Dan Jurgens, and Brian Michael Bendis all slated to attend. Also, WB-TV will be showing off a few things, including previews of Syfy's Krypton series. Wouldn't be too surprised if some hints about the upcoming Superman line revamp are dropped during this event.



KET

Professor Feetlebaum said...

"...The fact is that DC HASN'T put any official 'FINAL ISSUE' mark on the current Supergirl run."

Good point. Checking the listing for Trinity 21 and 22 in the February Previews, and the listing for Super Sons 16 in the March Previews, both have the notation "FINAL ISSUE".

No such notation for Supergirl 20.

Granted, it don't prove nothin' one way or another, but it's something. DC really should clear this up.

As for Super Sons, according to Tomasi on his Twitter page, there will be a Super Sons/Dynomutt Special out the last week of May.

Anonymous said...

Found some information in a Forbes interview with Bendis.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/markhughes/2018/02/01/exclusive-bendis-to-write-superman-revive-jinxworld-and-oversee-new-custom-imprint-at-dc-comics

Some key points:

"The Man of Steel story will debut a huge new villain, a blockbuster villain who connects deeply to Superman’s origin story and to his birthright," Bendis revealed. "We’re going to dig in very hard, this is one of my goals, to be a additive to Superman as possible. The characters we debut right away, including this new villain, will send ripples of horror across the entire Superman family and beyond!"

Despite the long interview, Supergirl is never mentioned by name, only as part of the Superman family who suffers horror as Superman digs into his birthright. Yeah, I'm not too happy about how this sounds.

"The fallout of Man of Steel #6 is enormous," Bendis insists. "It's some of the biggest status quo changes to Superman literally since Crisis.

Oh, are we talking about CoIE, good memories. Either way, we know that Superman, Superboy and most likely Supergirl comes out alive after this. So, what might happen? An interesting thing is that Lois is never mentioned once as being part of the next Superman or Action Comics iterations. Given how heavily she is currently featured that leaves room for speculation. I really hope she isn't next female to pay for a Superman arc.

"So we'll be launching Superman with a brand new #1, and that's going to be very Superman-focused and big DC action stories. Action Comics will be launching with #1001, I'm very happy to say, and that will be focused more on Clark and Metropolis and the Daily Planet, and how the world of Superman effects the world of DC."

No real mentions of the Superman family in any of the Superman titles which is a shame, but on a positive note he seems to guide Action Comics away from being the Superman Self-Title 2 it has been so far during rebirth.

"The last runs on Superman by Dan Jurgens and Peter Tomasi and Pat Gleason have been phenomenal runs, and my run will be following their runs. We're not throwing anything out, we're not abandoning anything, we're following what's been going on and taking it to surprising new areas."

This gives hope that no character will die as part of the "enormous fallout", but what will be the big status quo change be then? Also, note that once again he only mentions Superman and his writers. For someone taking the reins of the whole Superman family the recurring omissions of Kara is frustrating. It's hard to believe a parent loves his children equally if he only ever mentions one child except when someone else explicitly beg him to talk about it.

"I have a lot of goals for Superman," he says, "one of which is to help turn Metropolis into something as provocative and unique as Gotham City is. I think everyone will agree Gotham is one of the most built and best places in all of fictional cities, and Metropolis should follow suit"

This could be really great. I just hope that it becomes a City of Tomorrow and not a Gotham 2.

What are your thoughts?

Martin Gray said...

Sorry Anon, while you’re waiting for Anj... I know your fears come from a good place, love for Kara, but honestly, it’s like you’re looking for the worst possible spin on everything Brian Bendis says. I’m not a big fan of his Marvel work, but I do believe he loves Superman, and people who love Superman usually love Supergirl too. There’s nothing we can do to turn back DC’s decision to turn the Superman books over to Bendis, so why not hope for the best... DC publicist Clark Bull says there’s a plan for Supergirl, and I don’t think he’d be saying that if said plan meant Kara was being written out. As has been pointed out above, maybe the Supergirl book isn’t being cancelled. Likely it’s being relaunched with input from Bendis. We’ve seen that when there is a relaunch longtime fans don’t take to, the true - good, positive - Kara always reasserts herself, so let’s see what happens.

I get the worry. I’ve lived through every Supergirl cancellation. But why not hope for something great, send some positive energy out there?

And from what Bendis was saying in his Word Balloon interview, I’m sure Lois is safe, he really seems to respect her character and role in the Superman Legend.

garyb said...

Found an update on the Twitter:

https://mobile.twitter.com/BRIANMBENDIS/status/966505238285856768

BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS
@BRIANMBENDIS
Kara is a HUGE part of the new Superman books. and man, is she a blast to write. we're going to get VERY deep into her character in the new stories.

dated 9:49P< Feb. 21, 2018


which was in response to this question:

Kenny Kraly Jr.
@kennykraly
I hope that #Supergirl will have a big role to play in @BRIANMBENDIS 's run on the #Superman books once he takes over later this year for @DCComics . Remember Kara is a big part of #Superman 's family history


Anonymous said...

Change can be good. I actually liked much of Kara (2004) and Kara (2011) better than Kara (2016). Joe Kelly tried something different, to be sure, and while it mostly failed, it's not as if "bad Zor-El" was so totally repudiated by DC that they never wrote an evil variant of Zor-El again! (Hint: They did.) And is Oz still Jor-El? I can't keep that nutso story straight. If you are part of the older El generation, you are going to be written as a real or hallucinated villain from time to time.

Starting with Kelley Puckett and on through the long run of Gates and Igle, plus others who followed, the rest of that run of Kara (2004) was, on whole, I thought, excellent. The good stuff was around for 27 issues before cancellation (replaced almost immediately by New 52). And during those 27 issues, Supergirl appeared several times a month in other books - New Krypton, JLA to mention two - it was a good time to be a Supergirl fan.

That run featured a lot of truly great stories and art.

And left us with mysteries that cannot be answered: her bike shorts red, or blue, do they have a gold seam, and how long are they? Does he skirt have a gold bottom seam? How long is the gold part of her cuffs? Chalk it up to "She wears some when the others are in the laundry.)

New 52: I connected to the anger and suspicion; I thought her depiction as alien and angry made sense. The costume grew up me - first, the cape's collar, and finally the suit bottom could be drawn to make sense (almost).

Kara (2016): I've enjoyed it, but quite as much. Maybe it's less exotic than the others.

So for me, there is stuff from earlier runs that I wouldn't mind seeing find their way into new material.

As for that Bendis meangingless tweet:

"Kara is a HUGE part of the new Superman books. and man, is she a blast to write. we're going to get VERY deep into her character in the new stories."

"Supergirl" is not a Superman book. She wouldn't need to be a big part of the "new" Superman books if she had her own title. C'mon

And as I wrote earlier, "we're going to get VERY DEEP into her character" is Previewese for "We'll have a wordy couple of panels of thought boxes where she reflects on some choices she's made, or bucks up to get over some momentary lack of confidence."

Wasn't Bendis going to talk at this weeken's Emerald City Comic-Con? He announced there would be much more news maybe tomorrow. That will be helpful! We can come back here and parse it for more insight.

Anonymous said...

Bendis interview just ended at ECCC. Mostly chitchat about Jinxworld, his illness, Marvel and Superman. Supergirl was only mentioned in the capacity of the TV-show, so we have to wait a bit more for what happens with her in the comics.

Anj said...

Boy. Amazing comments. And discussion.

Looks like we’ll need to wait and see.

I’ve decided to be optimistic.

Anonymous said...

Summarizing a few points from 2 blogs reporting on the ECCC appearance (CBR and Newsarama; can't find any version up on YouTube yet). Most of this is from CBR:

Superman and Action will be continuing from the stories that are currently being told.

His take on Clark Kent is that it is significant Clark chose to be a reporter to service justice. Truth, justice, the American way even, under siege now - these were cliche just 5 years ago, but are worth fighting for.

(Wasn't the old premise that Clark wanted to hear news reports quickly so he could dash into action? Or am I making that up.)

Newsarama adds this from the Q&A:

"Give somebody a reason who has never read a Superman comic a reason to buy yours, that isn't 'because you're writing it.' Bendis put over the artists working on it. 'It's beautiful, it's truthful, and written from the heart.'"

All this sounds good to me.

The CBR and Newsarama summations make no mention of Supergirl even in the context of the TV show, which is itself a second-level dismissal, right?

Anonymous said...

Oh boi, I am literally not feeling an iota of optimism about all this. As an above commentator said, all that tweet by bendis about 'digging deep into Kara's character' and all seems exactly like she will get a few panels where she gets to do some internal monologuing and I am sure it will be done purely to support just Superman's story.

I have no reason to be optimistic at all, the fate of her book is being kept in the dark, again she is being relegated to a supporting character in Superman's book, apart from her tvseries there is no mention of her in the upcoming Krypton tvseries or even in the interviews bendis is doing. Kara is not Jon, she isn't a character who has been around for just a few years and as such saying that since Jon wasn't mentioned so it's fair that even she wasn't is a deep disrespect to her past, which by now I have come to expect from DC.

Also why not just give Supergirl, a nice cozy place in the legion- Superman has JL, the bats have birds of prey or Titans; since DC is so intent on going retro and back to their roots, giving legion back to her seems like a good idea too, especially since the tvshow is going it like that.

Nothing more to say, except to wait and watch.

Martin Gray said...

Anon wrote: ‘Wasn't the old premise that Clark wanted to hear news reports quickly so he could dash into action? Or am I making that up.)’

Spot on. The thinking is that in today’s world of news instantly disseminated via smartphones and tablets etc a newspaper environment isn’t needed. Indeedy, being in an office surrounded by people brings problems in that he has to make excuses to get away. He could just be sitting at home and monitoring for trouble. So another reason is needed for Clark to choose the news media.

Gear said...

Maybe he does it to stay in touch with what’s going on in the day-to-day life of the world and its people. It would be easy for someone like him to float god-like above it all, disconnected from everything, only touching things when someone needs to “save the day” from a big disaster. Reporting, and the news business, requires him to dig in at a deeper level than he might otherwise.

And I seem to remember a story where he said chose writing because it’s a challenge, that unlike most things he does he has to slow down, think about things from the standpoint of his readers, and work at it a bit. We all want challenges in life, that’s probably a lot harder for a Superman to find.

Then again, this might just be my head cannon pretending it’s a memory. ;)

Thayse L Couto said...

I really hope that the news about the cancellation is not true in the end, I liked Bendis twitter about exploring Kara's character in Superman's book because let's be honest they are family even if some people do not like it and should interact, but this can be done without the cancellation of the HQ,so I pray for the best and not another disappointment.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of the issue where Bendis makes his debut, the array of Action #1000 covers are neatl. Maybe we can have a poll to find out who is ordering which? (DC would like everyone to order all $71.91 worth of covers!)

I have to pre-order this week at my LCS.

The 1960s cover is goofy, exactly as befits that era - I ordered itl. The 1960s Supergirl appears at least 3 times. (And you can kind of see right here why DC wanted to kill off all of these extra super-animals, super-vegetables and super-minerals.) Who can identify every character on this cover? I'd love to hear!

Tthe 1980s variant by Joshua Middleton is the only one not yet available for preview, but I ordered it as well, sight unseen, because his work is always stunning. I can't imagine him producing anything but stellar work.

Since he's doing the the 1980s cover, we could get the iconic often-shown Crisis image of Superman holding Kara. Which could be great or panic-inducing!

He did some great Supergirl covers for the 2005-2011 series.

Here are the ones he blogged about:

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2010/02/supergirl-50.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/10/supergirl-49.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/09/supergirl-48.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/09/supergirl-46-and-47.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/06/supergirl-45.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/03/supergirl-42.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/03/supergirl-41-process-pics.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/02/supergirl-41.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/01/supergirl-40.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2009/02/supergirl-39.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2008/11/supergirl-38.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2008/10/supergirl-37.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2008/08/supergirl-35.html

http://www.joshuamiddleton.com/2008/06/supergirl-34.html

Just an incomparable run of covers. Is there one better?

Bengal did a dozen nice B covers in the current title, but they don't compare to Middleton's, and most of the A covers of the current title have been, I felt, marginal. Overly cluttered.

Artgerm's are great, but not as long a run as Middleton's. Not even close.

Anyway, Middleton's remain my favorites - another of many reasons why I think fondly of the 2004-2011 Supergirl title.

I know Anj always complimented these covers.