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J.H. Williams III Talks ‘Batwoman’ Delay, Unveils New Cover Art

Following last week’s surprise news that Batwoman #1 would not go on sale April 6 as previously indicated, series co-writer and illustrator J.H. Williams III has released a statement of reassurance that declines to actually explain the delay. However, the superlative artist did promise readers that all is well behind-the-scenes and that work continues on what is quickly becoming the most anticipated new series DC Comics has released in years.

That Batwoman #1 would not ship on April 6 was something of a shock to readers and industry observers, given the fact that the issue was already delayed once before. What made the new delay even more surprising was that DC had just last week released both online and in select comics a multi-page preview of Batwoman #1 that included the April release date just a day or two before alerting retailers that orders for that issue as well as Batwoman #2 were cancelled.

The launch of Batwoman is eagerly awaited. The character’s previous outing in the Detective Comics storyline now called Batwomnan: Elegy, also illustrated by Williams, was one of the most lauded superhero comics of 2010. Additionally, Batwoman – real name Kate Kane – is the highest profile openly homosexual superhero in American comics, and the debut of her eponymous series will be seen as a landmark publishing event.

A seemingly disappointed but no less determined J.H. Williams III took to his blog on Saturday to discuss the situation, offering no answers for the scheduling setbacks but plenty of background details for everyone who’s curious to know how this most idiosyncratic project is progressing.

Well, its obvious to many that Batwoman’s release has been pushed back yet again. This was not our choice, and as to why, I’m not at liberty to really discuss. So the release may be farther away now, but be assured that work is still commencing. The upside to a later release means that gives us plenty of time to get a lot of issues done. Amy [Reeder] has turned in some variant cover work for the series and has shown us thumbnails for issue 6, looks really nice. So while I’m moving forward, she is too, we’ll have my arc done and hers well on it’s way to completion by the time this thing rolls out. The only real downside is that solicits were pulled on us twice, making readers heads spin, wish that didn’t happen, but it has, lets just make the best of it. I’m fast approaching the middle of issue 3′s interior art, Haden and I’ve started working on script for issue 8, the first 5 covers are done, and Dave [Stewart] has had issue 2 in his hands for his special magic touch.

As a special treat for unhappy fans, Williams revealed (quite naughtily, really, given the rather formal unveiling of new artwork practiced by most comics publishers) the theretofore unseen cover of Batwoman #3. To sweeten the consolation, Williams provided not just the finished piece, but also the sketch, black-and-white and logo-less stages of his illustration.


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