Rich Johnston scooped The Source by a few minutes with the news that Marvel event veteran David Finch (ULTIMATUM, AVENGERS DISASSEMBLED)has signed a two-year exclusive with DC. There he’ll write AND draw a big project of his own. Finch previously worked on a DC/Top Cow crossover but has never worked directly on a DC character., (The Batman sketch is from his own private sketchbook.) CBR does the entrance interview and detects genuine enthusiasm:
Another under-appreciated aspect of DC that Finch hopes to explore is the larger-than-life tone of DC stories, which can range from gritty detective tales to sci-fi superhero epics. “[That] really touches on the central appeal for me of the DCU. The setting for a story plays such a major part in the narrative, and being able to create in such vivid colors is very exciting. Buildings, cars and environments can be so much more over the top. They can be futuristic and bright, or dark and dirty with wild pipes and gargoyles, and any kind of mixture in between. There’s just so much more dramatic effect that I can get from such wild environments.”
Johnston paints this in a wider view of a return to the “exclusive wars” that pounded the Big Two back in the middle of the last decade.
Exclusive deals ensure that companies get the full use out of certain creators and prevent competitors from using them. In return, creators can gain higher page rates and guaranteed work for a period, as well as a number of employee benefits. There have been exclusive wars between Marvel and DC in the past, it looks like they be about to begin again.
It is likely that DC Comics Entertainment will paint this as part of the new direction of the company. Of late they have not been as aggressive about exclusive deals, but I understand this has changed considerably in recent months, with a number of Marvel creators telling me that they’ve been approached with some very enticing deals.
Spicing up the DC brand with some bright new acquisitions is definitely a good way to spark 2010.