By Todd Allen
When DC released their solicitations yesterday, the dreaded words “Final Issue” were on the listing for G.I. Combat #7. Thus far, DC has liked to cancel titles in batches and then install a new “wave” of titles. Does this mean we’ve got some unannounced cancellations and a new batch of titles will be coming out in January? The New York Comic Con _would_ be a good time to announce a new batch of titles, after all. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the bottom of the “New 52” and see what’s happening… or not happening as the case may be. We’ll also see if anything in the December solicitation sounds like a wrap up.Sales estimates from August via The Comics Chronicles. Solicitation copy via DC’s blog.
- Captain Atom 10,445 (Cancelled)
- Voodoo 11,328 (Cancelled)
- G.I. Combat 11,797 (Cancelled)
- Grifter 12,400 (” Grifter and Voodoo vs. The Suicide Squad!” | “Is Amanda Waller responsible for all the bad things that have happened to Grifter? Will he stop shooting long enough to learn the truth?” | “Former Team 7 partners face off!”)
- Blue Beetle 13,325 (“Blue Beetle is stuck in outer space, deep inside Reach Territory. That shouldn’t be a problem, right?” | “Will Jaime be pulled into the war between the Reach and…Lady Styx?!”)
- National Comics Looker 13,475 (series of one-shots, none solicited for December – read into that what you will)
- Resurrection Man 13,741 (Cancelled)
- Fury of Firestorm The Nuclear Men14,137 (“Firestorm vs. Captain Atom!” | “Two of the most powerful heroes in the universe go head to head, and things are going to EXPLODE!” | “Don’t miss this issue’s shocking conclusion as the first hints of a disturbing new force in the DCU are seen!”)
- Frankenstein Agent of Shade14,679 ( “ROTWORLD: SECRETS OF THE DEAD” finale! | “Frankenstein vs. the last of the Colossi for possession of the soul-grinder, Victor Frankenstein’s unholy machine of destruction — but it’s the only hope against The Rot!”)
- Savage Hawkman14,745 (“HAWKMAN: WANTED” continues! | “Hawkman is a fugitive — and everybody wants to kill him for his Nth Metal Armor. Good thing Carter’s always ready for a fight!” | “Guest-starring Deathstroke!”
- I Vampire14,788 (“Mary and company continue to piece together the secret of what turned Andrew evil — and the answer lies with Cain, the first vampire!” |v”More secrets continue to flow from the events of issue #0.”)
- DC Universe Presents15,138 (“The New Black and Blue team-up of Blue Devil and Black Lightning continues!” | “Blue Devil’s suit is the source of his power, and it’s out of control!” | “Black Lightning has to stop him…hey, maybe killing him will do the trick!”)
- Legion Lost16,066 (“The lost Legionnaires must decide if they are willing to sacrifice millions in order to save billions!” | “Superboy and The Ravagers guest-star!”)
- Deathstroke16,772 (“A long dead memory from Slade’s past resurfaces, looking for revenge!” | “Will the legendary assassin known as Deathstroke finally be pushed past his breaking point?”)
- Demon Knights17,295 (“EVERYTHING changes this issue!” | “Merlin, Lucifer and a connection from the past to Stormwatch are all here…right before the team enters what could be their final battle!” | “So what happens next? Or should the question be when? And whose hands will the Black Diamond fall into?”)
- Batwing18,279 (“Batwing and Dawn battle Father Lost in the streets of Tinasha!” | “Father Lost’s new powers are proving too much for Batwing and his new ally…time for a last ditch effort that might just get them both killed!”)
UPDATE: Paul Cornell has debunked this on Twitter:
@comixace Demon Knights isn’t being cancelled. Could you state that, please? Rumours like this make stores order less.
— Paul_Cornell (@Paul_Cornell) September 18, 2012
Last time out, there were 4 cancellations: Captain Atom, Voodoo, Resurrection Man, and Justice League International. JLI may have been cancelled, not so much by overall bad sales, as underwhelming sales and we may see a newer, fancier Justice League franchise replace it. Still, if DC is looking to axe another 4 titles, Grifter, Blue Beetle and Firestorm look like they’re in a real sales pit.
That said, DC has been bending over backwards trying not to cancel Blue Beetle and it doesn’t sound like an end-point solicitation. End-point solicitations sound more like Firestorm, Legion Lost and Demon Knights. Grifter could be, as well. The Wildstorm relaunches have failed to strike a chord with readers. Stormwatch isn’t exactly burning up the sales charts and cancelling Grifter would leave the DCU with just Stormwatch and the not-yet-debuted Team 7 to launch the inevitable crossover that W.I.L.D.Cats will spin out of.
Maybe axing the very low-selling G.I. Combat is just clearing the deck for a new Justice League franchise. Then again, DC’s been drawing a line around 12K-15K (in Direct Market estimates) and there are titles in the danger zone.
Todd Allen wears a lot of hats. At various times he’s been (alphabetically), a bouncer, college professor, humor columnist, Internet producer and an NBA/WNBA Beat Writer, among other things. He’s the author of Economics of Digital Comics. You should probably read it.