Just ahead of DC Comics’ DC in DC event this weekend, the publisher announced that Oscar-winning screenwriter John Ridley of 12 Years a Slave fame will write The Other History of the DC Universe. The prestige mini-series, branded in the press release as “literary,” aims to re-contextualize key moments from the history of the DC Universe through the eyes of its marginalized heroes.

According to the announcement, The Other History of the DC Universe will feature heroes including Green Lantern John Stewart, Extraño, Vixen, Supergirl, Katana and Rene Montoya, among others. The press release takes pains to emphasize that the series will focus on “the lives of those behind the costumes,” hinting at a more grounded look at the fantastic universe the publisher traditionally presents.

“I could not be more excited by the opportunity to excavate the canon of the DC Universe through a vast array of characters who’ve earned their seat at the table,” said Ridley.  “I’m very impressed with DC’s commitment to making their history as reverent and urgent as it is engaging and entertaining for all its many fans.”

Ridley is currently penning The American Way: Those Above and Those Below for DC’s Vertigo imprint. The series, which is a continuation of Ridley’s and Georges Jeanty’s Wildstorm iteration of the concept, is a period piece that focuses on a black American hero named the New American fighting for justice amidst the background of the racially split political landscape of the 1970s.

Indeed, while the concept of The Other History of the DC Universe hints at an auteur exploration of the publisher’s lineup akin to cartoonist Darwyn Cooke’s The New FrontierThe American Way‘s focus on social justice issues and marginalized communities sheds further light on what themes and ideas we’re likely to see explored in The Other History.

Ridley will be at DC in DC this weekend to discuss The Other History of the DC Universe at a panel called “The Many Shades of Heroism: DC Heroes Through the African-American Lens.” The panel is expected to live stream on Saturday, January 13, at 11 a.m. ET on the DC YouTube channel.

The Other History of the DC Universe is expected to begin in winter 2018, following the conclusion of Ridley’s current run of The American Way. No artist has been announced at this time.


  1. Oh, if he can manage to make Extraño relevant, interesting, and not cringe-worthy…that’d be an accomplishment in itself…

  2. Extraño was already revamped in Midnighter, I believe; I wasn’t buying the book, but from what I gather his appearances were well received.

    I’m extremely intrigued by this project — I hope it gets an artist that’s up to the challenge.

  3. Thank you for your wonderful article. Where else could anyone get that kind of information in such an ideal way of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I am on the look for such information.

  4. Legit none of those characters are marginalized, Super-girl has a TV series and is featured in the Injustice game, same for John Stewart who was in my generation of justice league cartoon, Katana was used in Suicide squad, Rene Montoya is another Jim Gordon. Vixen is also a character in Injustice as well, and is doing really well with the comics. Extrano is all you have. I know this direction is going to be bad for DC comics because marvel did the same is now horrible. Please reconsider. Don’t ruin these characters or include any agendas that’ll turn away the fans.

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