MegaCon 2010: DC Nation Panel Report

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The first impression that comes to mind about Dan Didio is that the man has presence. He’s a ball of energy who’s excitement is only contained by his creative staff holding him back. On more than one occasion, he was talked off the ledge of letting a secret slip by one of his fellow panelists. The panel comprised of Dan Didio (Co-Publisher), Ethan Van Sciver (Flash: Rebirth, Green Lantern: Rebirth), Tony Bedard (R.E.B.E.L.S., upcoming Green Lantern Corps) and Jimmy Palmiotti (Jonah Hex, Power Girl).

Didio began the panel by explaining the new management roles and how he hopes it will create a more accessible and creatively sound DC Nation. In other words, “Everything you like about DC is Jim Lee’s doing. Everything you don’t like, that’s my fault.” 

Without breathing, he moves to get the panel started. 

“Batman... who’s reading the Batman family books,” he asked the crowd. He then proceeded to point at members of the audience that answered, asking them what they liked and what they didn’t. He used these moments to create an open forum, moving from topic to topic. Regarding Bat-family books:

-    Batgirl has surprised many of its success and the character will continue to be a prominent member of the universe.

-    Birds of Prey is returning with Gail Simone, but Stephanie Brown will not be a part of the book at first. The title will also launch in the Blackest Night aftermath and cross over with Brightest Day in places.

-    Red Robin is the breakout hit coming out of Battle for the Cowl and Didio hopes people will stay engaged in the story with the coming shake ups involving the return of Bruce Wayne.

-    A Batwoman ongoing was silently confirmed (thumbs up and winks).

Dan invited a couple dressed as Green Arrow and Black Canary onto the panel next to him to help him discuss the next topic.

“Now that it’s over. Justice League: Cry for Justice. What’d you think?” He looks to the Green Arrow sitting next to him, “Are you worried?”

Fan reaction to the ending of Cry was mixed in context, but the majority of the crowd is interested to see where it all goes. Didio attributes that to James Robinson’s compelling storytelling and lets us know that Green Arrow will be a character to watch for a time to come.

The discussion of late art was broached again. Didio looked to Van Sciver on his left and asked, “It’s worth the wait, right?” To which Van Sciver sat up in his chair and resounded, “Yes.” 

Didio went on to explain that it frustrating but they weigh it on a case-by-case basis. If the story can handle the wait, then the art will win out for future collections and consistency. However, if the art delay is responsible for a number of other titles being held back, then an executive decision is often made for the fill in or a jam session of artists.

Flash is the character to watch next with it’s creative team striving to make Barry Allen the premier Flash. It was revealed that early iterations of the new ongoing was almost like a team book with the whole Flash family, but they decided to make it more Barry focused. Didio joked about it being akin to the Hannah Barbara’s Wacky Races. Visions of Dick Dastardly dressed as Zoom danced in my head.

-    Bedard’s upcoming run of Green Lantern Corps will involve Soranek, John Stewart, Kyle Rayner and Ganthet but would reveal no other cast members.

-    Green Lantern Corps and R.E.B.E.L.S. will cross over, but more organically. Bedard revealed that the Vega System will get some new GL Members and hilarity will ensue.

-    Terry McGuiness, a.k.a Batman Beyond, will feature in his own mini this year with possibly more.

-    JMS’s upcoming run on Superman will be a “180 degree turn from where the book is now. It’s that dramatic.”

-    Similarly, JMS’s takeover of Wonder Woman will be an equally “radical and fascinating” change.

-    A question about the Spectre was purposely ignored.

-    Marc Guggenheim’ s upcoming run on Action Comics will compliment JMS work on Superman. It will also carry a Secret Origin of the Legion of Super-Heroes co-feature.

The panel was running short on time, so a lightning round of questions commenced.

-    Blackest Night #8 will have extra pages and contain a fold-out.

-    We’ll see more of Jaime Reyes, Blue Beetle, soon.

-    Ethan Van Sciver is working on something secret with Gail Simone and a creator owned property with Wildstorm.

-    Will the different colored Lanterns be featured in other books? Not yet, DC is working on getting them established first.

-    Grant Morrison’s Multiverse Project is moving forward. Didio hinted at his Earth-4 and Earth-2 storylines being great, but no timeline or release structure was provided.

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  • Bart Croonenborghs

    Bart Croonenborghs Mar 15, 2010 at 3:46am

    Not a very exciting people it seemed with lots of non-news :-s

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