You may have noticed a trend here at The Source. We like to show cool art once it appears in our inbox. SUPERMAN Group Editor Matt Idelson and his assistant Wil Moss, coincidentally, like to forward us cool art. It works out nicely.
So, to close out this Monday, we've got three covers from SUPERMAN artist Renato Guedes. The covers, for ACTION COMICS ANNUAL, SUPERMAN ANNUAL and SUPERGIRL form a loose triptych image. What's better than a Guedes image? Well, three.
ACTION COMICS ANNUAL, which hits 6/17, features the origin of Nightwing and Flamebird, from writer Greg Rucka and Pere Pérez.
On 8/19, SUPERMAN ANNUAL #14, by James Robinson and Javier Pina, delves into the past of Daxam, the home planet of Mon-El, from its roots as a Kryptonian colony to it's Earth connections. Could the planet Mon-El always saw as peaceful be anything but?
And on 9/2 we have the SUPERGIRL ANNUAL, by Sterling Gates, Fernando Dagnino and Raul Fernandez, gives readers a look into the lives of the two ladies of the Superman family -- Supergirl and Superwoman. What's a day like for Supergirl in her secret identity? Also, what drove Superwoman to become the threat she is now?
Click below for some Guedes goodness.
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Here's hoping everyone had a relaxing weekend. In case you weren't chained in front of your computer, here are a few of the things you may have missed while enjoying two days or rest.
• AIN'T IT COOL NEWS unveiled an exclusive first look at BATMAN AND ROBIN #1, by Grant Morrison and artist Frank Quitely. Keep your eyes peeled for a few more sneak peeks at the first issue in the coming days.
• Pete Tomasi talks to NEWSARAMA about the road to BLACKEST NIGHT. The site also talks to writer Keith Giffen about the newly-announced MAGOG series, and to the supremely talented J.H. Williams about Batwoman's upcoming stint in DETECTIVE COMICS.
• Remember that time back in March, where BATMAN Group Editor Michael Marts talked to IGN about his very neat photo board, featuring key characters heading into BATTLE FOR THE COWL? Well, now that the major event is over, the board has changed, which means Marts once again drops hints as to where your favorite characters are going, in a chat with IGN's Dan Phillips.
• And last, but certainly not least, THE NEW YORK TIMES unveiled their Graphic Novel Bestseller list for the week of May 23. Of note: SUPERMAN: NEW KRYPTON, BATMAN: THE KILLING JOKE, BATMAN R.I.P., JOKER and BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS all made the list.
Hey folks! As usual, we have our regular “From the Editors” post coming your way. Being the diligent worker we all know and love, Matt Idelson managed to give us his entry early, as he made his escape to the distant land of Barcelona. Enjoy...
Spring has reverted to summer here in New York, which would be a nice thing if I could have class outside. Alas, I have a job to do, and panic’s starting to set in. The offices close early today going into Memorial Day weekend, and of course we’re closed Monday. Which means aside from Tuesday, I’ll be out of the office for a week and a half, attending a convention in Barcelona.
Tops on the priority list is putting a wrap on ACTION #878, the first of a two-part story by Greg Rucka & guest artist Diego Olmos that introduces us to a new pair of Kryptonian sleeper agents. Once I’m done giving the lettering a final pass, it comes down to waiting for the trusty and reliable Rod Reis to keep feeding us pages of color to go over. I know already that assistant editor Wil Moss and I will be reviewing pages over the course of the weekend so Rod can have the final colors ready for us when we come in Tuesday morning.
Not far behind that is keeping things moving on the ACTION ANNUAL, which comes out the week after ACTION #878. Greg’s done a very different story for this one, and it’s coming together beautifully. Pere Pérez, who knocked it out of the park with the GUARDIAN SPECIAL last fall, is doing all 40 pages of this one, and it’s pretty awesome. Right now I have to start reviewing Mazi’s colors for the book—they’re gorgeous, but of course I have to go over them with a fine-tooth comb and make sure everything is as it should be. The guy can color, though, no question!
My focus is broken when Wil, associate editor Sean Ryan and editor Liz Gehrlein pop in for our daily session of updates, problem solving and movie reviews. Today I discover that neither Liz nor Sean had seen “Taxi Driver” before the past weekend. I am appalled. Some of our discussion centers around actual work, in this case some ideas Geoff Johns has had for his contribution to the upcoming SUPERMAN SECRET FILES. Geoff has an alteration in mind that opens up some interesting possibilities …
The gang leaves to do their thing, and I get back to ACTION – but wait! An excellent colorist who goes by the name “Blond” has accepted our offer to color the upcoming SUPERGIRL ANNUAL since our regular SUPERGIRL colorist, Nei Ruffino, is way too busy. That’s the good news. The bad news is that this means I have to establish a pay rate for him—I’m guessing he won’t do this for free out of love for the medium.
Oh, look – it’s almost 1. Gah! Clearly I’m not getting out of here when the offices close. That’s cool—I have the best job in the world anyway. Leisure and cookouts can wait. Especially when I get an email from David Macho in Spain, with Santiago Arcas’ colors for the first installment of our Captain Atom co-feature, which will debut in ACTION #879. David says in the email that we’ll be stunned by what we see. He wasn’t kidding!!!!!! Man, I can’t wait for that issue to come out. The readers are definitely in for a treat!
The phone rings and Jim Fletcher of DC Direct fame is on the line with some Superman-related questions, mostly of the “will this character be around a year from now?” variety. They do really cool stuff down there, and I’m eagerly awaiting my Mike Carlin action figure.
Cue a discussion over Rocket Reds with SUPERMAN artist Renato Guedes, figuring out what the tomb of Zor-El is going to look like with Pete Woods, going over lettering corrections for SUPERGIRL #42 with Sterling Gates, a new idea from Geoff (him again?!?) about the end of SUPERMAN: SECRET ORIGIN #2, annnnnd the end of the day has finally arrived! Well, it’s 1 o’clock somewhere …
Happy Tuesday, Source readers. It's been a busy few days here at the DC offices, with tons to discuss and point you to. So, let's hop to it.
• Over at NEWSARAMA, Dan DiDio answers the latest batch of fan questions, and shares more details on DOC SAVAGE, BLACKEST NIGHT, ADVENTURE COMICS and the new cover design for books featuring co-features. See above for a visual aide. Also at NEWSARAMA, James Robinson and Greg Rucka share some info on the August Superman crossover, CODENAME: PATRIOT.
• BATTLE FOR THE COWL is speeding toward its final issue, and IGN's got a first look at the third issue. Not to mention a peek at the BLACKEST NIGHT stuff hitting in August, along with the cover to BLACKEST NIGHT #2.
• Speaking of James Robinson, COMIC BOOK RESOURCES sits down with him to talk about JLA: CRY FOR JUSTICE.
• And congrats to the VIXEN creative team of G. Willow Wilson and CAFU, for their Glyph Award victory in the Fan Award For Best Comic category.
How about a little news with your coffee?
This August -- ACTION COMICS #880, to be exact -- will see Julian Lopez (ORACLE: THE CURE, BATMAN AND THE OUTSIDERS) step in as the regular series artist, just in time for a crossover with the other Super-books. I could summarize the plot of said crossover, or hint at stuff, like Superman maybe returning to Earth, or New Krypton/Earth relations hitting an all-new low, but that'll just make you impatient for August, right? Not to fear. We have some sketches from Mr. Lopez to tide you over until then.
Superman's been drafted into New Krypton's Military Guild, so it's starting to look like General Zod might have finally put the Man of Steel under his control. But when an order comes down commanding Kal to commit an act of brutality, Superman has to choose between his duty and what's right. Click below for some pages from the issue, featuring a snazzy Howard Chaykin variant.
SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #2 hits on 5/6.
You've gotten a peek at a few of the upcoming co-features over the last few weeks, including MANHUNTER, RAVAGER and THE QUESTION, but there's still one that hasn't seen the light of day: CAPTAIN ATOM, co-written by James Robinson and Greg Rucka with art by CAFU, who you first saw in the pages of the recent VIXEN mini-series. Who is this Captain Atom? How does he fit into the DCU? We'll let the story speak for itself, which kicks off in ACTION COMICS #879, in July.
Ah, dawn in the city. I start going through emails. Renato Guedes has sent us pencils for pages 9-10 of SUPERMAN #688. Wow, these are gorgeous! Renato has been nice enough to draw this critical scene first, as we’ll be flashing back to it in SUPERMAN ANNUAL #14 a couple of months later. Some more gorgeous pencils are in from guest-penciller Fernando Dagnino for SUPERGIRL #41—man, he’s SO good. Looking at our schedule, however, I’m thinking it might be more logical to ask Fernando to draw the upcoming SUPERGIRL ANNUAL rather than ACTION #878-879.
Dan pops his head into my office and wishes me a good morning. Communicate with Fernando’s agent, David, by email and put forth my suggestion. He’ll get back to me. Most of the other emails are either updates on work progress or artists stating their availability.
I go through the lettering for SUPERMAN #687 one last time in preparation for the book to be sent off to the printer, then look over the latest inked pages from Pere Pérez for June’s ACTION ANNUAL. Really, really great stuff! Man, I’m lucky. Get an email from Greg Rucka saying how happy he is with the pages as well. Greg’s up early this morning—must be ‘cause he has kids.
Jamal Igle drops me an email—he’s back from two weeks in France with his wife and daughter. I should have been a penciler. Enjoy a chat with Gary Frank regarding SUPERMAN: SECRET ORIGIN #2 and the cover he’s working on for SUPES: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #5.
While on the phone with Gary, Pete Woods submits a design for a new character who will be playing a progressively larger role in the Superman books over the summer. All I can say is, “WOW!” I don’t know how he does it time and again, but Pete nails it on the first try.
Assistant Editor Wil Moss strolls in with some last-second questions regarding the SUPES #687 coloring, specifically involving a scene deep in the heart of Metropolis’s sewers, were Atlas currently hangs his hat. As usual, he raises an excellent point, and splits to let colorist David Curiel know what we’re thinking. Then he returns with Editor Liz Gehrlein and affable Associate Editor Sean Ryan—must be time for our daily group meeting. We review the state of our respective books, running proposed solutions by each other, then get to discussing the various pitches we’re considering for a very-down-the-road 80-page book. In the process, we eliminate a few repeating beats in a couple of the stories and see a theme for the overall book emerging. Also in the process, a good twenty more emails show up.
The lunch hour arrives, which means eating at my desk and attempting to catch up on email. I also spend a bit chatting with James Robinson, who is putting the finishing touches on a Captain Atom story he is co-writing with Greg. He, Greg and I then share our thoguhts—via email—on the initial designs that come in from the Captain Atom artist, CAFU. Simply stunning! We explore steering some of the architectural designs in a slightly different direction.
All of the sudden it’s 1:30, which means it’s time for the weekly Superman writers’ chat. Liz, Sean and Wil reemerge from their offices to join me, and we phone up Greg, James and SUPERGIRL writer Sterling Gates and begin a very focused discussion on our next crossover between the Super-books in August. What these guys have come up with is simply amazing, and I’m getting more and more excited about the event. About five minutes in, Geoff Johns joins us—in person! Geoff’s taken up temporary residence in our fine city while constructing the upcoming BLACKEST NIGHT epic. I choose not to ask Geoff who’s feeding his dog, just in case he’s forgotten about that. The call ends at around 2:45, but that’s only because we editorial people have a meeting coming up which we need to prepare for.
3:00 on Wednesdays means it’s time for our weekly staff meeting. Part of the focus each week is on the general status of the many books coming out from now through about 12 weeks down the line. Dan also goes through a couple of top-secret items with the full staff, then fills us in on his trip to Seattle’s Emerald Con. Sounds like a great show, and the fan response he got is really gratifying to hear.
The rest of the day is divided between returning emails, finding reference for artists, taking stock of the status of our covers and solicits for the next catalogue cycle with Wil, and preparing as best we can for what awaits us tomorrow.
5:30 rolls around and I head for my long train ride home, during which I’ll be reading Greg’s latest script pages for the ACTION ANNUAL and a short story by James for the upcoming SUPERMAN SECRET FILES detailing the humble beginnings of a certain Project 7734.
Here at The Source, one of our goals is to bring you, the reader, behind the scenes and straight into the creative process. With that in mind, here's a glimpse at the preliminary designs for Batwoman, from the desk of the amazingly talented J.H. Williams. Now, we've seen our share of interior sneak peeks for Batwoman's upcoming stint in DETECTIVE COMICS, but this is a first look at the steps taken to bring Batwoman to the finished page. We dare you not to click.
DETECTIVE COMICS #854, from Williams and writer Greg Rucka, hits in June. Oh, and here's the cover for July's DETECTIVE #855...