DC Comics Confirms Six ‘New 52′ Cancelations and Six New Titles
Blackhawks, Hawk and Dove, Men of War, Mister Terrific, O.M.A.C. and Static Shock are the first cancelations of the New 52, DC Comics' aggressive initiative to reinvigorate its publishing line with an aesthetic overhaul that saw the company launch or relaunch all superhero titles from issue #1. Notably, all six of the cancelled series were newly created for the New 52, as opposed to relaunches, and will conclude with April's issues #8.
Also confirmed on Thursday was what DC is calling the Second Wave of the New 52: six new titles beginning in May including World's Finest by Paul Levitz and George Perez and Kevin Maguire; Dial H by China Miéville and Mateus Santoluoco; G.I. Combat by J.T. Krul. and Ariel Olivetti; The Ravagers, a Superboy and Teen Titans spinoff by Howard Mackie and Ian Churchill; Earth 2 by James Robinson and Nicola Scott; and the return of Batman Incorporated by Grant Morrison and Chris Burnham.O.M.A.C., Static Shock and Men of War were ranked favorably when ComicsAlliance reviewed every #1 issue of the New 52 last September. Written primarily by Ivan Brandon and drawn by Tom Derenick, the relatively realistic Men of War was among the few critical darlings of the line, earning particular praise from author and comedian John Hodgman (Brandon confirmed last month that he'd leave the title with issue #6). O.M.A.C. is a favorite of the Internet cartooning community and its cancelation will come as a blow to fans of its Kirby-esque dynamism. The cancelations of that book, along with Static Shock and Mister Terrific, reduces the already low number of minority-starring superhero books by three.
Impressively, DC is replacing the six cancelled titles with six new ones, although that number includes the return from hiatus of one of its most missed series, Batman Incorporated. The storyline of the title's final cycle is described by USA Today as depicting "the popular Caped Crusader and his army of global crime fighters against former flame Talia al Ghul, with their son Damian (who also is the current Batman sidekick, Robin) caught in the middle." Morrison told USA Today, "It's like Kramer vs. Kramer, but they've got thermonuclear capability."
Also not unexpected is Earth 2, the previously announced Justice Society-related project by former JSA and Starman writer James Robinson and artist Nicola Scott. What is very surprising is World's Finest, which instead of starring Superman and Batman as has been the case traditionally, will feature Power Girl and The Huntress. Written by Huntress co-creator Paul Levitz and drawn by George Peréz and Kevin Maguire, this series will come as a welcome to treat to longtime DC fans.
G.I. Combat would seem to be a base of operations for all of DC's disparate military-themed concepts, including the Unknown Soldier the War that Time Forgot and the Haunted Tank. The book will come with backup stories by creators including Justin Gray, Jimmy Palmiotti, Dan Panosian, John Arcudi and Scott Kolins. It's unknown at this time what will become of the new Sgt. Rock created in Men of War.
All the "Second Wave" titles come courtesy of established comics pros except for Dial H, which is written by fantasy novelist China Miéville (the Bas-Lag series). DC's The Source blog describes Mieville's work as a "bold new take" on the "Dial H for Hero" concept, whereby an ordinary person is becomes a temporarily superpowered being. The author told USA Today, "Part of the sign of the New 52 growing up is that it can afford to stretch its wings a little bit and so some things that are a bit more left field. There's room for a lot of different inflections in this vocabulary."
The New 52's first cancelations occur in April with issues #8, and the Second Wave books in May.