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As we all know, DC is now a west coast company, and there’s a lot of changes happening. Co-publishers Dan DiDio and Jim Lee have been doing the press rounds with a series of interviews conducted at SDCC for various outlets, and in the Comic Book Resources edition it seems like stability is the new word:

While DC is bringing in so many new creators, you’ve got new projects with creators like Marv Wolfman and Len Wein. How deliberate is that balance?

DiDio: It’s really finding the best creators for the best projects. Look at the marketplace right now: There is a proliferation of comic books out there. You can see 400 titles on a monthly basis. We want to make sure we have the best talent pushing forward — we’re looking at the entire talent pool now, and saying, “Who’s best to execute our books? The best interpretation, the best voice, the ones that are able to push this character moving forward?” Our goal is never to be in a position where we are restarting, relaunching a line, ever again. Quite the opposite. What we really want to do is build on what we created from the launch of New 52, take what existed beforehand, integrate that in, to give us the best interpretations of the characters that organically move forward, and are all part of one big continuity, that is DC Comics.


Given the constant upheavals of the Crisis Era—one year later, five years later, final this, infinite that—this sounds like a bit of a sea change. Nü DC has sported fairly modest crossover/events since Convergence, and granted, its only been a few months, but previous Septembers were the launching point for various largeish eventish things, from the original New 52 itself to Trinity War to Forever Evil and so on. Darkseid War and Robin War are happening or in the works but they are a bit more limited in scope, so far anyway. Maybe we’re entering the War Era?

The new staff is one third old timers, one third previous West Cost employees and one third all new, all different staff, so the new DC philosophy is still evolving. Given the realities of the industry, one can’t entirely fault the previous approach of endless electroshock therapy to jolt a jaded readership/retail community into a “what is going to happen now??!??” mindset. But in just a couple of years, comics readers who like a reliable monthly experience of reading about their preferred characters seems to have taken hold as the targeted audience. Stan Lee was a big proponent of the illusion of change to keep people coming back. At the very least, in order to have a status quo to throw into chaos for dramatic effect you need to actually establish a status quo with some sense of stability. Maybe it’s just time for the DCU to become a comfy, reliable place.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. I hope your interpretation is right, but I think it’s a big leap to extrapolate “Our goal is never to be in a position where we are restarting, relaunching a line, ever again” into “no more event titles.” Events like Forever Evil, big as they were, weren’t relaunches in any way. There might be a little break, and the crossovers might be a little less omnipresent — not reaching into books like Bizarro or Prez, perhaps — but they’ll come around again, executed with various levels of skill, as always. Hopefully, they’ll be no more invasive than is sensible, but crossovers are at the heart of the shared universe concept. Hopefully the new ones will just tell a story, though, however big, and not try to upend the universe every summer.

  2. Having a goal and being able to achieve it are two very different things. If sales stay high and the audience is responding to what they are doing, then there’s no reason for a relaunch. But if things get bad and they need the combination of a jumping-on point and lots of attention, it could still happen.

  3. I think Didio is just saying what he thinks we want to hear. He is gonna reboot/relaunch, the moment he has issues with the new line. Whether it is in 3 years or 5. It is just easier than publishing well written projects.

  4. I have a hunch that we are going to see this ‘jumping the shark’ behavior continue for quite some time, with more and more frequent jolting of the comics lineup. Readers today have no patience or attention span for development.

  5. In the 19th century they would have summed up Dan DiDio in one short easy sentence.

    That man is an ass!

    Nothing else comes close to summing up his talent and wisdom.

  6. DC only moved 2.08m units inside the Top300 in July. That numbers was 2.15m in July 2011, right before the reboot, and 2.23m in July 2010. DC YOU in its second month managed to only have 4 titles in the Top30 plus a MAD MAX book. At 23.4% their unit share in July was their worse EVER while dollar share was the second worse EVER behind Mar h 2015. Marvel is 15% ahead now when they were about 6-7% before the New52. Why does the Didiot still keep his job?

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