2004 Will Be “The Year of Superman”

Newsarama is reporting that DC Comics is taking some bold steps to rejuvenate their flagship character, Superman.

Jim Lee and writer Brian Azzarello will be the new creative team on Superman starting in March of 2004. Writers Greg Rucka and Chuck Austen are set to take over the other two Superbooks beginning in 2004. Grant Morrison, Art Adams, Matthew Clark and Bill Willingham are the other creators announced on various Superman projects in 2004.

It’s been quite clear to me for some time now that something, anything must be done with the Superman books. I started buying them all again a few years ago when DC announced their first big creator revamp, bringing on the likes of Jeph Loeb, Joe Casey, Joe Kelly, Ed McGuinness and Mike Wieringo. I was very excited about the creative prospects for one of my favorite characters, but except for a few exceptions, the Superbooks had the same problems that they always had: more than any other books, the Superbooks had such a tight editorial clamp that nothing new or interesting ever happened in them. What’s the point of bringing on interesting and talented people if you’re going to tie their hands? I was extremely disappointed.

There was a time (like when Grant Morrison, Mark Millar, and Mark Waid submitted a proposal to revamp the Superbooks and were sternly rebuffed) when DC editorial was of the opinion that Superman is bigger than any creator. Obviously, that’s not the case. Hopefully, this time DC has learned their lesson.

Now, if they can just find a way to undo Clark and Lois’ marriage…


  1. That’s good news, I guess. I buy and read all the Superman titles, and have found much to like about them. I think Ed McGuinness was one of the best things to ever happen to the book, and I think Luthor-is-president storyline has been terrific. (Sometimes, I think a homocidial maniac like Luthor would be better than the homocidal maniac we actually have.)

    My one fear of any Superman revamp is the danger of turning the book into what it’s NOT. So … please, no black leather jackets, big guns, pesimissim, grim-and-gritty crap. There are too, too many comics that take that cheap and sleazy way out. If anything, Superman should be bright and vibrant and positive.

    Just my quick thoughts….

  2. I agree that the President Luthor idea was a stroke of brillance, but personally, beyond that, not much good has come out of the Superbooks the last few years.

    I always thought that Superman was handled better in other books like JLA and books that he guest starred in.


  3. i don’t think superman has needed a line of books for a long time. i agree nothing great has come out of the S-books in awhile, they have done the re-vamp time and again. sure this one sounds like they are pulling out all the stops with the creative teams, but how long can that last. i say they should focus on one or two books and they don’t ever have to cross over. maybe keep superman and turn action into like a legends of the darknight kinda book. telling or re telling his early adventures.

  4. the revamp is this decade’s new “#1 issue”

  5. There was the famed Action Comics 775, which was supposed to usher in a new era of Superman, but it was more of the same after that. Even Action 775 was a comment more on the state of comics, especially the Authority type of trend than a change in the way of Superman.

    I think for a lot of these “name” creators working on Superman, it’s their bread and butter book, where they make a lot of money and use it for the chance to get paid well to work on something “easy” and then use the money to work on something more esoteric. Still, Superman, well written or not, will remain the same, as decreed by the Time Warner office of Stangancy. They don’t want a new Superman comic. If it’s not losing money, and keeping the status quo alive, they’re happy. Good creators on the book is just a way they keep breathing a little life back in the corpse that on one can really save.

    I also agree that the Luthor as president story idea is absolutely brilliant, but I don’t know what they’ve done with it. I’ve read some issues here and there and they weren’t bad, but I didn’t keep reading, so take that as you will.