Cornell Off STORMWATCH, Nicieza Off LEGION LOST and More Changes to DC Comics’ Creative Teams

Entering into the fourth month of DC Comics’ new era, we’ve learned of further shuffling in the creative rosters.

When the music stops...

Let’s break it on down:

  • In November Newsarama reported that Ron Marz would end his run on Voodoo with December’s issue #4, leaving scripting duties to Josh Williamson. Williamson’s most recent project is DC’s Uncharted tie-in, and he impressed last year with a top notch issue of Superman/Batman, pairing Damian Wayne with Supergirl. He begins his run on Voodoo with January’s issue #5.
  • Paul Cornell announced via Twitter that Stormwatch #6 would be his last entry in the series, though he remains on Demon Knights and the forthcoming Saucer Country for Vertigo. DC announced that Paul Jenkins will script a two-issue Stormwatch arc in issues #7 and #8, but a permanent replacement has yet to be confirmed.
  • Meanwhile, Fabian Nicieza ends his run on Legion Lost with February’s issue #6. His successor is former Marvel EIC Tom DeFalco, who’ll lead the series into a Teen Titans crossover involving the mysterious N.O.W.E.H.E.R.E. collective. You can read about a few more developments in the works over at DC’s Source Blog.
  • CBR reports another shakeup going on with The Fury of Firestorm, as Gail Simone exits to focus on the Batgirl ongoing after issue #6. Taking up the torch as co-writer is Joe Harris, author of Oni’s Ghost Projekt. Ethan Van Sciver remains on the writing team, and he’ll also fill in as interior artist for issues #7 and #8. Yildiray Cinar tags back in for #9.
  • Today, DC also announced that James Robinson and J.T. Krul will each contribute stories to Men of War #7, due out in March. They discuss their contributions on the Source Blog.
We’re just glad Keith Giffen gets to relax on this one. Man’s got a lot on his plate.


  1. As much as I’m digging Voodoo and Stormwatch (and definitely won’t be sticking with Stormwatch under Jenkins) all of those books got some of the more… middling… reviews so I’m not terribly surprised they’re trying to shake things up and get some stronger titles.

    I think it’s interesting they aren’t canceling any of these books but are changing teams up instead

    • Well, still too early to say they won’t cancel the books, I still think they are holding to that 6 month rule. But, constant writing changes may help and also hurt these titles as they can or will suddenly shift in tone and stories.

    • Oh some of these will absolutely be canceled at some point, I just think it’s interesting especially in the wake of Marvel canceling books before they’re even released. I appreciate that they’re at least trying to give books a chance to build an audience.

    • What’s funny is I’m sort of the same… finding enjoyment in the comics that got so-so reviews, and the ones people rave about seem to be overrated (not all of them, but a couple).

      Stormwatch I think is very under-rated.

      However, the titles with poor reviews are deserved.

  2. Maybe DC are only giving writers one arc to get the book right and if they don’t it goes to whoever gave the next best pitch before the new 52 kicked off. If that is the case, some of these decisions have been good: Krul off Green Arrow and Perez off Superman. It’s a shame about Cornell, I hoped he would have more time to find his groove with the Stormwatch cast.

    • It looks more like Krul and Perez bowed out early than were kicked off. Those changes were announced very early on. Marz and Cornell were probably more due to fan reaction and editorial direction changes. Gail and Ivan Brandon were editorial disagreements. Nicieza just had too much outside commitments. It’s not just black & white.

    • @CagedLeo730: What are you basing your “editorial disagreements” statement on? I figured Gail leaving Firestorm had more to do with her not gelling with Van Sciver as a writing partner. Gail made comments on Word Balloon about how Van Sciver and her had struggled to find an idea for Firestorm that worked, like for MONTHS struggled, before finally moving forward with an idea for the new 52. My guess is that Gail and Van Sciver were never really on the same page, but Gail had a hard time saying “No” to her good friend. Again, this is just my speculation based on nothing more than a few snippets of conversation and the final finished product that is The Fury of Firestorm.

  3. Giffen doesn’t have nearly enough books. Give that man ten more!

  4. So long, Stormwatch. On one hand, I want to keep reading a Cornell Stormwatch book, but on the other, this sort of thing make it easier to cut something. I like Demon Knights a bit better so as long as I have a crazy Paul Cornell team book I’ll be happy. Saucer Country sounds very interesting.

    The Stormwatch change could definitely be Cornell having too full a plate. But with the shake up on Voodoo it seems like editorial has a specific direction they want to take with the Wildstorm books.

  5. A lot of this has to do with keeping things on schedule I think. Also giving fresh writers a shot at really hitting a hot streak with a title isn’t a bad idea either.

  6. Cancellations will come. Each week with the DC books you definitely see a downward spiral on this site on those titles that are not proving popular (Hawk and Dove I’m looking at you!).

  7. I will say one good thing about DC’s writer switch-ups; This week’s Green Arrow, written by Giffen, was noticeably less horrible than the previous three by Krul. It sure isn’t going to be anybody’s pick of the week, but for the first time, I’m actually hopeful about the future of the series, especially with Ann Nocenti coming on in March.

    • Hey, way to stick in there with Green Arrow! I mean, I wouldn’t do it, but I am glad there is someone out there who is.

    • Now seems like a pretty good time to start reading DCnU Green Arrow. Giffen’s issue was actually pretty entertaining, and with Nocenti’s experience on Daredevil, she seems like a perfect fit to build up GA.

  8. I thought Men of War was cancelled as of issue 6?

    • After the initial sales exceeded their expectations I think TPTB changed their minds on the 6 issue rule. I think all series will be given at least 9 to 12 issues.

  9. A shame, because I was hoping for a nice long run of Stormwatch from Cornell. He seemed to have been a perfect fit.

  10. Okay this is why I shake my head at DC. This is the exact same problem they had with the old DCU. Creative teams leaving with only a handful of issues which doesn’t allow for anything to feel right. Either someone is pissing someone off, or DC just can’t keep people.

    • I respectfully disagree. These books (Stormwatch et al) were not working for the vast majority of fans. It is better to make the change than to hope that the writer/artist finds their footing. They have not gone to the step of cancelling the book; though, let’s not kid ourselves, that step is certainly coming next if these books don’t rebound.

      If anything, I think the new 52 has shown that fans will give lower-tier characters a shot if the books are given a big enough marketing push, and fans will continue to buy their book if the stories are compelling (see Animal Man and Swamp Thing). DC certainly gave all of their books a big marketing push, and the readers (thankfully) showed up. The problem is that these books were found lacking by most fans.

      It is not as if these books have flown under the radar and would benefit from additional exposure. Everyone and their brother tried these books, or read a review about these books, or talked to someone about these books. For the first time in my memory, the entire DC line up is kind of a known quantity because it has had so much exposure. Yes, a lot of this “knowledge” is based on one issue, but people have mostly made up their minds on these books. It’s going to take a writer/artist change and some positive buzz to bring people back. It’s a long-shot, but at least, I think, it shows that DC has faith in the characters. They haven’t pulled the plug on the book because I think they want them to succeed. That’s positive.

  11. This is a shame, because I was very much looking forward to a Demon Knights/Stormwatch crossover. It may still happen, but not with Cornell’s singular vision. Sucks.

  12. Have to admit was not enjoying Stormwatch and kept reading hoping it would get better. Will quit it now. Was enjoying Voodoo and will probably keep buying. Am I the only one reading Voodoo ?

  13. Must say I am very surprised at the Cornell/Stormwatch news. Though I admit that even while liking issues 1-2, I’d buy it but hold off reading it, knowing it was so dense/complex. Same with Swamp Thing & Animal Man; these books seem to be written so arc-y that reading single floppies isn’t enjoyable for me. If I’m going to dive into a single issue each month, I don’t want to have to re-read the previous two or three issues just to recall what’s going on.

    I really hope Cornell stays on Demon Knights – now that is one fun read every month!

  14. Incidentally – and maybe this isn’t the place for it but oh well – how many 52 books are you reading and which are your favorite? I’m currently at 7 but have only budgeted for 4 so I need to make some cuts soon. Animal Man is the only definite keeper right now but Swamp Thing may seal it after this week. The problem is too much good [which is only a problem when you can’t afford it] so these four need to be great.

    • My 52 books then and now?

      I knew I wouldn’t keep every 52 #1, but I requested everything I was interested in: Aquaman, Wonder Woman, DC Universe Presents (because of Deadman), Batman, Tec, Nightwing, Swamp Thing, Animal Man, and Resurrection Man. I reserved Red Lanterns, but flipping through it, I put it back on the stand without reading. Books I picked up AFTER they came out because of great reviews (aka iFanboy): The Flash, Demon Knights, All-Star Western and Catwoman. Books I now read after four months (and after getting my subscription list monetarily balanced for other good stuff): Batman, Tec, Nightwing, Swamp Thing, Animal Man, Wonder Woman, and The Flash. I would still love to read Aquaman, Demon Knights, All-Star Western and Catwoman, but I can’t afford it, plus, I’m sure my library will get the trades. I can wait.

    • Then: Batman, Detective, OMAC, All Star Western, JLI, Stormwatch, Resurrection Man, Swamp Thing, Animal Man, Demon Knights, Frankenstein.

      Now: +Wonder Woman, +Catwoman, -Stormwatch, -Resurrection Man, -Detective.

    • I started with all the Batbooks, All Lantern books, GA, Aquaman, Hawk & Dove, Swamp Thing, Animal Man, Catwoman, Storm Watch, Flash, Batgirl, Batwoman, Red Lanterns, and Demon Knights.

      I dropped Demon Knights because I felt the pacing was too slow and added Voodoo. Glad I did.

  15. I’m honestly not sure if I will want to continue with Stormwatch if Paul Cornell isn’t on it :/ His take has been awesome and I’d love it to continue, oh well, they have me until #6 I guess.

  16. I’m excited for the Legion Lost/Teen Titans crossover. I also heard Superboy will crossover as well. I’m not reading Legion Lost, and I hope I won’t have to buy tie in issues.

  17. I love Paul Cornell on Demon Knights, but I’m glad he’s leaving Stormwatch. Maybe someone else will be able to make it shine.

    I’m disappointed that Ron Marz is leaving Voodoo. It was my surprise hit of the new 52. Other books are certainly better, but I don’t think any have exceeded my expectations like Voodoo did.

    After struggling through three issues his of Green Arrow, I can’t believe anyone would give JT Krul at writing anything.

  18. Wonder if there’s any chance they could get Warren Ellis to come back and write Stormwatch? His work on it was amazing. I was enjoying Cornell’s run – it was very “Ellis” in its weird ideas.

    Robinson could be good on MoW, not sure about Krul.

    I’m surprised Simone is leaving Firestorm so soon, but I didn’t enjoy what I read of it, so maybe that’s for the better. I guess these changes are better than having the books cancelled!

  19. The Jim Lee/Dan Didio train keeps rolling on, leveling anything good in its path and replacing it with the ’90’s. Remember “gimmick” covers? Shiny foil, lenticular frames, holograms and the like? Remember poly-bags and trading cards? You’re favorite heroes going “dark”? The New 52 seems like another ’90’s gimmick, and it’s one that may be failing. Well, maybe ‘flailing’ is more accurate. I’m still reading a few of the titles, and I’ve found that there isn’t anything in them that couldn’t have been done in the OLD DCU. So why the change? Why the reboot? To get attention in a sagging market. Gimmicks.

    Now, here they are, scrambling to find footing when the gimmick doesn’t work like they thought it would. And it doesn’t seem like they’re learning their lesson. Tom DeFalco on Legion Lost? A writer of suspect ability on a book featuring a team readers have shown little interest in during ANY of their lastest runs? I knew DeFalco’s style was clumsy and bloated back when I was 10 and had no idea what “good” was.

    I’m sorry to those of you who are pulling for the New 52 to succed and may take umberage with my bad attitude here, but
    for me, this is one more step toward DC going back to what it was, Green Arrow with a beard and a couple of kids, Catwoman knowing the name of the (Bat)man she’s shagging and Superman with his underwear on the outside of his (non-armored) costume. But, lest I come off as a grouchy-ass old fart who hates and fears change, let me know if and how I’m wrong here. I promise, all opposing viewpoints are welcome, and I won’t bite.

    • I guess I dont view the New 52 as any more of a sales gimmick then Crisis on Infinite Earths was, or maybe I do…. Crisis and Who’s Who were the jumping on point for me which has continued over 25 years now. A number of people will start with DC’s New 52 and continue on for years. Every event, since the old JLA/JSA team ups, were designed to bring people on board. Are they a bit more commercial about it now? Sure… but we also have more venues for advertising those events. Comics aren’t considered for kids anymore….they’re marketed towards people with the funds to spend on them. We talk on message boards and get instant reactions from them which we didnt have 25 years ago.

      Events and sales boosts aren’t the enemy…they’re what keep our titles running….its easy to get fatigued of restarts but for companies like DC and Marvel, they’re also the lifeblood.

      I’ve found with DC’s New 52, though I started reading nearly every title the first month…..the whole event has helped me find which titles I’m truly passionate about. I was always a primarily DC..and I still am, but I’ve never signed on to more then one or two Marvel titles at a given time, and now that Im paring DC down to the ones I feel more strongly about, I find myself exploring Marvel more and even trying Image, Boom, and a couple other independent more often….SO…Did DC accomplish its goal? Im more fanatical then ever about DC’s titles that IM passionate about…but Im also checking out the industry more all around.

    • Thanks for the feedback. Let me ask you: As a DC guy, how do you feel about the new iterations of the characters you’ve followed all these years? Are you excited about the changes? Is it a deal for you at all?

      It’s appropriate that you bring up Crisis. I remember reading about how angry many fans were that characters and stories they loved were changed or erased completely, as if they never happened. In a smaller way, I kind of feel like one of those fans now. It’s like DC is telling us,”All that stuff you were reading and really enjoying? Forget about it. Some of it happened, some of it didn’t. We’ll let you know. Also, Superman’s a weenie now. It makes him more relatable.”.

    • I sort of feel that every 20-30 years its sort of natural for them to do something to wipe the slate clean….it doesn’t really bother me. I was more bothered by how rushed and forced some of the stories wrapped up. I dont like ALL the new iterations of characters. Im devastated that they threw out Oracle and Stephanie Brown’s Batgirl….I hate that Green Arrow is so bland and lifeless now….

      However the trade-off is some fantastic new titles…. Animal Man and Swamp Thing are my top two favorite books of the relaunch where a year ago I would never have considered reading horror or anything other then traditional clean artwork. Id never cared to read Swamp Thing prior, and Animal Man was a character I enjoyed but never a favorite. In addition, Wonder Woman and Aquaman have never been better….Flash has finally founds its legs after a few awkward years. Resurrection Man is appropriately back in a new telling. Batman is still cranking out some of the best stories ever.

      Superman didnt need a relaunch to make him a weenie….his walk across America last year did that for him, and that was before the relaunch, but before that, he had some of his best stories ever with the whole Brainiac saga and the New Krypton story line. Many people felt that powering him down for John Byrne’s retelling did that for him back in 1986….Me I just thought it was a cool jumping on point and I read it straight through for most of my comics reading. I may not care much for the Superman title right now but I still get a charge out of Morrison’s take in Action Comics.

      My feeling on it really isn’t any different then Connor, Ron, and Josh’s view…. those stories still happened. You can still go out and find those stories in back issues. Noone can tell you that a story you read, didnt happen….you can’t unread it…its still there. Rather than focus on the stuff you dont like, reach out and find new characters you do like. If you find a current title on DC’s rack right now that you get hooked into, you wont have to look up more then 4 issues in the back issues to get caught up….it doesn’t get much easier than that.

      Besides that….people were revamping characters even before the relaunch. A new writer comes on board and doesn’t care for the current status quo, he re-jiggers the origin. Somewhere in between John Byrne’s run on Superman and Geoff John’s run on the character, a whole lot of stories got swept under the rug….that was pre-relaunch, but I dont feel cheated they dont exist in continuity. I still read those stories.

      Besides, if we didnt throw out continuity that didnt fit anymore, then we’d be looking at Batman at about age 40 (though 50 more likely)…and Nightwing at about 29-30 years old.

      Sorry to go off on such a long diatribe, but I guess a lot of this is stuff that Ive been thinking about over the last couple years and especially since New 52.

    • RecksDeud: Someone could correct me, but I thought the idea behind the new 52 (aside from a few mainstays) was to remove all the burden of all that old continuity that stood in the way of new readers. These new 52 stars were to be COMPLETELY NEW VERSIONS of those characters. Anyone who had no idea of who Superman was (yuk yuk) could come on board and what they read in the new Superman and Action IS Superman. Not a guy with all that history. Not a new guy putting on the suit. You can accept that there was a previous guy who had that history, but this is a new version, with nothing to do with the past. If this is the case, I wouldn’t call this an event, but it is a promotion.

      However, when I was a kid, I had no problem buying a new Marvel Team-Up or Spidey or whatever knowing there were 100+ issues before the one in my hand. I guess that was because of the great quickie bio boxes at the top of the page, and stories were done in one. I didn’t have to know what had happened the month before. And, a lot of DC books at the time were running older stories in their Giant Size “60 pages for 50 cents” kind of books. If too much current continuity was the reason why DC did this, then my theory above needs to be true.

      I will say this about “this guy doesn’t exist:” Maybe 10 years ago, I was reading a Batman letters column and someone had a question about Bruce’s activities in the 70s. The editor at the time, forgot his name, said point-blank and rather bluntly. “This is not that Batman. He doesn’t exist in this continuity, and neither are his stories.” I guess he was sort of referring to “Crisis.” This pissed me off in that I grew up with Batman in the 70s. The stories DID exist because I read them? I lived through them! And this Batman, whether one wants to believe it or not, makes decisions, has personality traits, etc. that were gained through his experiences back in the 70s and before. How do you explain that Mr. Editor? Needless to say, as the iFanboys would call it, don’t worry about continuity. Just enjoy them as you want to. And that’s what I do. If DC wants to get new readers by introducing a brand new Wonder Woman, Flash, Aquaman, etc., they need to stick with it. Hard to do when most of your fans know Alec Holland/Swamp Thing’s history, but oh well.

    • Sorry about the typos above. I get really into it when I’m writing about continuity and my history of comic reading.

    • @Skyfire124: Wow. No apologies necessary, and that wasn’t a diatribe as far as I’m concerned. In fact, it was almost like you reached into my head and pulled out my thoughts: Oracle was a great, integral character in the Batman world, and Steph Brown as Batgirl was one of my favorites. You’re judgement of Green Arrow is dead-on. He used to be a fire-starter, now he’s just another young guy with some toys, a bunch of money and even more one-liners. If I’m being honest with myself, I’m looking forward to Ann Nocenti taking over that book. I’m hoping she’ll bring something fresh to it.

      You’re right about a lot of things I’m not taking into consideration: Animal Man and Swamp Thing are really good, and I didn’t think I was going to care for them. Wonder Woman is really unique, and Aquaman is a character I never thought I’d like. And I completely forgot about Superman walking the United States like a sad-sack hobo in a cape. I REALLY liked the Braniac and New Krypton storylines. I dropped the book after JMS got his hands on it, and that had NOTHING to do with this relaunch I’m so negative about.

      You’ve given me a lot of food for thought, and I appreciate your insights. The way they wrapped up the stories I was reading DID feel rushed and forced in a lot of instances, but I guess taht was something that couldn’t be avoided if they wanted to get this relaunch underway. Maybe I should just cool my jets and give the New 52 another chance.

      @stevetwo: In all honesty, I really have been trying to do like the guys say and not worry about continuity. I also think I’ve been failing at it miserably. What you say about Batman in the ’70’s, and what it means to you, is how I feel about the DC stories I’ve been reading since I was a kid. But you’re right, I can go back and read those books while still enjoying what’s out there now.

  20. This worries me very much about Stormwatch. Cornell is doing such a great job with it, but for Jenkins the last thing I remember reading by him that I enjoyed was his Inhumans max-series for Marvel. I hope they find an appropriate permanent for Stormwatch that will pay respect to what Cornell is doing for the series.

  21. Tom DeFalco?!?

    Bob Harras has pulled out his rolodex!

  22. There goes my second favorite new 52 book after Batwoman. Sad to see Cornell go. The only reason I can imagine him leaving the book is because he thought he wanted it, but really didn’t. Its hard for me to think editorial would shaft him after such a strong start. Though next to impossible, Morrison is the only other writer I can imagine doing well on the book.

  23. Man, what a bummer about Stormwatch!! I’m really loving it, and I felt like Cornell really had a long story planned. Major bummer. Who’s this Jenkins guy?

  24. Hmmm, while Stormwatch kept just missing greatness for me, I did enjoy it and each week it came out it was on the top of my to read list. (I didn’t get to the store this week, so I haven’t read the new issue). I was hoping for a long run by Cornell, though I was wondering about his workload once you add his new Vertigo title, and would rather lose him on this than Demon Knights which is one of my favorite book right now. I’ll give the new creative team (whoever they are) a chance, but I don’t know, I could use a cut in my pull list. It was Cornell writing the title that motivated me to try the series in the first place . . .