IB: Let me ask you, do you feel the effect of this climate of sensationalism affecting what you still read? My purchasing habits are similar to yours and I’m in constant fear that the books I dig are headed for the chopping block because no one gives a damn about a self-contained book that his its own stories to tell. Real stories, not just a series of “explosive” events tethered together ever so slightly amongst various books. That’s another thing I worry about. The skill to write a real thorough story is losing its value when the interconnectedness of a shared universe can be used as a crutch.
JL: What worries me is almost the opposite: as sad as I’d be to see a book like Blue Beetle get the chopping block, I think it’d be worse if someone at DC thought the best way to “help” the book is inextricably tie its storyline to Countdown. An example might be something like Punisher: War Journal, which had a pretty great first issue, and then got incredibly blah for me: I can’t tell if that’s because I really don’t like the current team’s take on the book, or if the book never got a chance to develop a take that wasn’t tied to whatever big event was happening in the Marvel Universe. And now that (if I remember correctly) sales are going down, and the tie-ins to Civil War and the Death of Cap are over, how hard is going to be for the team to avoid tying the book into Secret Invasion or whatever big event Marvel’s got coming down the pike?