San Diego Comic Con is without a doubt the biggest event on the industry's calendar, and people will be flying from around the world to attend panels, watch trailers, meet creators, and make friends. This year's event is bigger than ever, with so much going on every single day that it can be difficult to sift through all that information and decide how to spend your time.
With the event only days away, we've looked through the schedules and hand-selected some of the best events happening on Thursday and Friday for fans of comics, collectibles, TV and film, so you can be sure you don't miss that must-see panel or signing.
With only two issues out already, Detective Comics has already become the standout title of DC's Rebirth line. The focus on the Batman family has not only put together a team of characters that I don't think we've ever seen together, but it's opening up the door for some bold new relationships --- and the return of a few that we haven't seen in a while.
And when the third issue hits next week, that's exactly what we're getting. As Batman is brutally attacked by the seemingly unstoppable soldiers of the Colony, Batwoman is questioning her pace in training the next generation of Gotham City's vigilantes --- and she talks through her problems in a visit from Renee Montoya. Check out a preview!
With Detective Comics #934, James Tynion IV, Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Adriano Lucas and Marilyn Patrizio ushered the Batman Family into DC's brand-new Rebirth era --- but it's not exactly a version of the Batman Family that we've ever seen before. Instead, with a new villain in town targeting Batman's sidekicks, partners, and associates, the Dark Knight put together a new team led by Batwoman to train them to survive a conflict that has already left Azrael critically injured.
But with a new team that includes classic sidekicks, new versions of old favorites, and at least one supervillain, it raises the question of just how these characters were put together. So with the second issue of his new run just over the horizon, ComicsAlliance spoke to Tynion about his choices for the new roster, his goal of redefining the relationship between Batman and Batwoman, and who his all-time favorite character is.
One of the more interesting things about DC's practice of throwing out its existing continuity every once in a while and starting over with a new reboot is that it never quite gets to Batman himself. Sure, there are bits and pieces that are changed --- as the years go by, you lose elements like Joe Chill and Carter Nichols, until someone decides they want to bring them back again, for instance, and you might even get something as extreme as Zero Year coming along to supplant Year One --- but there's never really the kind of clean break with previous continuity that you see with Superman or Wonder Woman.
Instead, the core of what's going on with the character always carries over into a shift in focus, a new direction that brings one of those elements to the forefront in a new way. And this week, when Detective Comics returned to its original numbering under James Tynion IV, Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Adriano Lucas and Marilyn Patrizio, that's exactly what happened. It's the same Batman that we had before Rebirth, but with a new emphasis on his relationship to his extended family of sidekicks and partners. And it turns out that it's exactly what I wanted out of a Batman comic.
Earlier this week, Boom Studios announced The Backstagers, a brand new young adult series by James Tynion IV and Rian Sygh that delves into the mystical and magical world that lives behind the theater curtain, and stars the stage crew of a private boys school. As the play comes together around them, no-one else knows how weird and wacky things can get backstage, and not even the crew themselves know what they'll stumble onto next.
ComicsAlliance caught up with Tynion and Sygh to talk about the world of The Backstagers, creating all-ages fiction for people that need it, and teen romance. Also, we've got a ton of early development sketches by Sygh, and three covers to The Backstagers #1 by Veronica Fish, Bridget Underwood and Rob Guillory!
Boom Box, Boom Studios' young adult imprint, has been one of the go-to places for top quality comics that not only provide representation for people who often don't see themselves reflected in the stands at their local store, but also provide excellent stories in and of themselves. The likes of Goldie Vance, Jonesy and Giant Days are some of the most consistently fun and exciting comics being published right now, and today we learned of a brand new series joining the fold.
Announced as part of a piece at The New York Times celebrating the imprint, Backstagers by James Tynion IV and Rian Sygh follows a group of theater crew kids from an all-boys private school who get whisked away to an alien world. The new series is described by the Times as a mirror image of the acclaimed hit seriies Lumberjanes, and promises to be just as diverse, welcoming, and exciting.
When you get right down to it, this was the sort of thing that pretty much had to happen. I mean, if you're going to take advantage of having a premise like a Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles crossover --- and I think the past few months have shown us that James Tynion IV and Freddie E. Williams II are definitely up for the challenge --- then eventually, you're going to want to make some new mutants and have them fight Batman. It's the most logical, toyetic, ridiculous and amazing thing you possibly could do, and as the series hit its final issue this week, that's exactly what they did.
So in case you missed it, well, Mr. Freeze is a polar bear now, and it's kind of my favorite thing.
In the mid-eighties, DC Comics tried a bizarre experiment known as the DC Challenge, a story told by twelve different creative teams over twelve comics, with the catch being that each issue would end on a cliffhanger that the next team would have to get themselves out of. Announced at Emerald City Comic Con, DC is reviving the series in the form of Kamandi Challenge, thirteen creative teams over twelve issues telling one complete story with the classic Jack Kirby character, Kamandi: The Last Boy On Earth.
The original DC Challenge featured the likes of Elliot S! Maggin, Mike W. Barr, Dave Gibbons, Gene Colan and so many more legendary creators. and featured the additional caveat that they could use any DC Comics characters, except ones they were currently working with elsewhere. The series culminated in a jam-packed final issue which was divided among six of the previous creative teams.
This week marked the final issue of Batman & Robin Eternal, and while we're still close enough to it that the honeymoon has barely even started, let alone ended, I'm pretty sure that I can declare it to be my all-time favorite weekly DC project.
The shorter run benefited the project, but it was the story that made this comic great. It weaved its way through Batman's long history of sidekicks --- a history that pretty much introduced the very concept of sidekicks to the world of superhero comics --- and ended up looking at Batman, Robin, and what those characters mean, in a way that I'm not sure any other story has.
DC Comics hosted a special livestream event at WonderCon in Los Angeles on Saturday afternoon to unveil the creative teams behind its DC Rebirth event, which relaunches the entire DC Universe line with new issue #1s and multiple double-shipping titles. The relaunch will set the future course of DC Comics at a time when fans are wondering whether the company will embrace a new and diversifying audience or double down on serving a shrinking core audience.
The event was introduced by DC All Access host Tiffany Smith, with DC co-publishers Jim Lee and Dan DiDio and chief creative officer and Rebirth chief architect Geoff Johns introducing and interviewing the creative teams as they joined them on stage at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
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