Spoiler Alert: It's a New Year!1 of 12Ah, Autumn. The leaves turn color, the temperature drops, and the first solicitations of the new year start popping up, meaning I have just about 5 more months of accidentally typing “2014” in the headlines of solicits until I get it right.
DC Comics, as usual, is first out of the gate, with their January 2015 solicitations that reveal some new story lines, some major changes, some teases for the future, and one major return.
And about that - if you’ve avoided that Batman and Robin spoilers so far, and are genuinely trying to avoid it for the next two months, then skip the #1 entry here. And don’t follow Pete Tomasi on twitter or read any interviews with him. Or - yeah, you’re probably going to just have to give up the internet for the next couple of months, let’s be honest.
But for now, skip #1 if you don’t want spoilers.
Without further ado, and with respect to The Flash's 75th birthday (he got his own gallery, after all), these are the ten stories of note in the DC Comics January 2015 offerings.
Forget Who’s Who, Here’s What’s What2 of 12The guide to the DC Multiverse. If this was made thirty years ago, it would be infinity pages long. You could literally never stop reading it. Thankfully, DC has limited the multiverse to 52 universes nowadays, but the Multiversity Guidebook from Grant Morrison and basically every major artist that has worked at DC Comics in the recent past will still take 80 pages (at 8 bucks) to tell you about those.
This goes hand-in-hand with that big poster showing off the Multiverse given out at Comic-Con International: San Diego back in July, and it gives the full compendium of all 52 Earths, plus the extra-dimensional worlds like that of the New Gods and the Speed Force. There’s also a new comic story crossing over multiple Earths.
Tom Taylor Leaving Earth 2 Behind3 of 12Earth 2 no longer has Tom Taylor on the credits, instead listing his co-writer for December (as well as November and October), Marguerite Bennett, and one of her co-writers for World’s End, Mike Johnson as the writers for January’s issue.
It was probably inevitable, with the monthly series increasingly tied to the weekly series, that the creators directly working on the weekly would need to express control over the monthly, as well. We reached out to DC Comics, and they confirmed he is no longer a writer on the series as of January’s issue.
He’s also launching Superior Iron Man over at Marvel, and continuing the digital-first Injustice (also in a parallel universe) for DC Comics.
More War Teases4 of 12Futures End has been a great source for teases on the multiple wars that are coming up for the heroes of the DC Universe in the next 5 years of their time. January’s #37 (the cover to #38 is shown, was the only one of the month provided) looks to pull back the curtain even more, giving specific looks at what John Constantine and Amethyst’s roles in “The War” were. With Constantine currently on Earth 2 in the present day, that war could be creeping up on us faster than we thought.
Yes, New Power Girl is Joining the Teen Titans5 of 12The January solicitations reveal what we supposed back in September. Yup, the new Power Girl is joining the Teen Titans.
SUPERMAN Going Through Changes Again?6 of 12Young Kryptonian, have you started noticing your voice cracking, new feelings, and hair where there wasn’t hair before?
Yes, it seems Superman is going through some changes again, as the solicitation for Superman #38 by Geoff Johns and John Romita, Jr. promises “a new costume, new powers, and new friends and enemies!”
Sure, it sometimes seems the Superman can’t go more than a couple months without a major status quo change, but if these are actual, sticking-to-it changes, it would be the most significant since the dawning of the New 52 in September 2011. Batman will guest star in this issue, too, and it’s $4.99 for 40 pages, the same price and page point that Batman’s creative team (and fans) protested successfully.
Bluebird Debuts, Batman Eternal Catches Up7 of 12Remember when Batman #28 came out last Spring, jumping forward in time and “Spoiling” events of Batman Eternal? Well, in January’s Batman Eternal #43, the weekly comic catches up to the events of that special issue, and promises “a twist you won’t see coming!”
Just before that, Bluebird makes her official debut, too, so it looks like she won’t be working with Batman for all that long before their catch-up appearance. At 43 issues, January will see the series with only 8 or 9 issues left before the DC Spring 2015 event, so things should be speeding up considerably.
Substitue Batman vs Batman Send-Up in Grayson8 of 12Dick Grayson, one-time Batman, fights Midnighter, who was originally the Batman-avatar in the WildStorm universe. That’s what’s going down in the pages of Grayson #6, after being teased earlier in the series. What we don’t know is perhaps more interesting than what we do, however. What has Midnighter been up to since leaving Stormwatch? What is his particular beef with Spyral? And can a Batman wannabe really even hold a candle to a man who successfully protected the mantle of the Bat?
Any way you slice it, it should be just plain fun, something this series has been praised for and many other comics seem to have an issue achieving of late.
Classic Villains Return9 of 12Mr. Freeze in Arkham Manor, Anarky in Detective Comics, Ultrahumanite in Action Comics, Grodd in Aquaman.
The line-up of DC villains is starting to look a bit more familiar. While new villains are fun, and have been used to varying effect in the New 52 so far, there’s something comforting about a name and a character you’ve known for years coming back to haunt the heroes you love. And it’s not like things aren’t being switched up a bit, as evidenced by the Grodd vs. Aquaman match-up.
No Cancellations!10 of 12That’s right, the words “final issue” don’t appear once in the DC New 52 solicitations (yes, Fairest ends at Vertigo in January, but that was planned ahead of time). While there are definitely a few titles struggling or in the “cancellation range” where other books have gotten the boot, none of them are ending in January, and it’s refreshing. Seeing DC let some new titles or even just new creative teams have a shot to grow and nurture a readership is nice.
Of course, the cynic inside says this could just be a stay of execution until March, when it’s widely believed every book will be taking a month or two off during what’s both the anniversary of Crisis on Infinite Earths and DC’s big move out West in April.
And now, ahem, SPOILER ALERT for the next entry and Robin fans.
Robin Revealed11 of 12We’ve written a bit about this already today, but it bears repeating as easily the biggest news in this set of solicitations. As of Batman and Robin #38, Damian Wayne, son of Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul and dead for the last year and a half or so, will be back in the role of Robin.
Oh, and he has superpowers.
Now, many are calling foul on this, and think it’s all part of a larger ruse. After all, it sure seemed like in the Futures End world, Damian was dead and gone, right? Of course there were multiple clones of him around, one of whom decided to be a hero with the Teen Titans - could that Heretic have been the real Damian?
Anyway, it has some fans very excited, some quite upset, and some just perplexed - why build up so many Robin candidates, even going so far as to show one of them in the role in the future, just to bring him back after all? Any way you slice it, though, people are talking about Robin and what’s coming in January, and that’s good news for DC.
1 of 12
2 of 12
3 of 12
4 of 12
5 of 12
6 of 12
7 of 12
8 of 12
9 of 12
10 of 12
11 of 12
12 of 12