iFanboy Video Podcast

iFanboy #147 – Wildstorm

Show Notes

Ron, Josh, and Conor go back and look at what made Wildstorm great, with influential titles, like Wildcats and The Authority, as well as some of the superb creator owned work released by Jim Lee’s Image offshoot turned DC imprint.

We look over some of the earliest imaginings of the Wildstorm Universe, notable Jim Lee’s WildC.A.T.s, and its many offspring, like Gen 13 and Team 7. As the decade ended, we were introduced to the game-changers like Stormwatch and The Authority by Warren Ellis, as well as Joe Casey’s amazing take on volumes 2 and 3 of Wildcats.

From Alan Moore to Brian K. Vaughan, Wildstorm has been the home of many well regarded creator owned books, including the long running Astro City. Moore published his America’s Best Comics through the imprint, producing such classics as The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Top 10, Promethea, and others. Then Vaughan and Harris dealt with some serious issues with Ex Machina. More recently, Jeff Parker and Tom Fowler up the stakes with the fantastic Mysterius the Unfathomable.

The Wildstorm universe had some rocky restarts in the last few years, but with the most recent relaunch, World’s End, the classic books like The Authority, Wildcats, Stormwatch PHD, and others are firing on all cylinders, driven by great creators like Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning, Simon Coleby, Christos Gage, Neil Googe, and more. They’re some of the best superhero books on the market, and a lot of people are missing out.


Get Involved

Doing the podcast is fun and all, but let's be honest, listening to the 2 of us talk to each other can get repetitive, so we look to you, the iFanboy listeners to participate in the podcast! "How can I get in on the fun?" you may ask yourself, well here's how:

  • E-Mail us at contact@ifanboy.com with any questions, comments or anything that may be on your mind.

Please don't forget to leave your name and where you're writing from and each week, we'll pick the best e-mails to include on the podcast!


  1. great show guys, makes me really want to read everything WildStorm has put out, even the bad stuff.

  2. Wow, great episode.  I think I’m gona have to go out and get some of the recent wildstorm stuff….wow.

  3. Great episode.  For someone still in their first year of being full-on into comics, I’ve always dismissed WildStorm as being that company who do the type of superheroes that inspired Action 775 and video game comics (despite owning the first two trades Astro City and two Ex Machina trades, which I always think of as Vertigo)  I’d always written The Authority off as something written purely to be edgy and go against the standards (probably thanks to Action 775) but after this episode I think I might have to look into it.  Mysterius sounded pretty interesting as well.  Might even add the next issue of WildCATS to my pull list.

    And since I brought up Action 775, anyone who hasn’t read that REALLY needs to.

  4. I have been pissed at Jim Lee for years due to his selling out to DC, has there ever been a definitive reason given for the move? Like I know there was a problem the other founders had with Rob Lifeld at a point, or was it strictly a business decision.

  5. You sold me on DnA’s Authority.

  6. @k5blazer you’dhave to ask Jim Lee that, but I’m guessing it had to do with a check with lots of zeroes in it 😉

  7. @k5blazer I remember when it happened wizard did an article about it in which Jim Lee moreless said he couldn’t handle running the day to day operations of the studio and DC offered to buy it and remove the managment burden, and as ron said I’m sure there was a check with lots of zeroes.

    anyhow, I loved this episode, when I was younger I use to goto barnes and nobles and try to read some of the various wildstorm books and thought alot of them were great, but I also got terribly confused because at the time DC was very inconsistent with which titles it released to trade. After watching this episode I felt inspired to goto instocktrades.com and actually see what they have.

  8. Hmm, apparently D&A have left Authority.  So much for my interest in the current run.

  9. Who was the guy who kicked of Stormwatch PHD and why?

  10. @Slockhart – There are still plenty of good books to read if you haven’t read them.

    @Heroville – look up Micah Ian Wright on Wikipedia.

  11. You’ve convinced me.  The Authority: World’s End is now on my wish list.  I wasn’t really aware of any of this.  Thanks, guys.

  12. Very much enjoyed the episode. I remember getting into Stormwatch and Wildcats v3.0 all those years ago – principal reason being that neither DC nor Marvel was giving me mature (not porn) superhero fix.

    Wildcats 3.0 is particular was really something new… a corporation that was genuinely trying to do good things for the people…



  13. Nice episode….where’s Planetary?

  14. Thanks for answering my question guys…Josh especially for the email I sent. Just wanted to help you guys cover all the bases.

  15. I’ve read most of the recent Authority and Wildcats stuff, like last year, and hated it.  I’m glad you guys did this so I could check out other ones that I’d be interested in.

  16. hey everyone this is my first comment ever here on ifanboy . ( is there a "hey i am new topic"?)i really dig the show  so i just read the authority stuff written by millar and wondered if there is anything i need to read before buying the new stuff. i heard about something calles revolution or evolution??anyway great show. greeting from germany keep up the amazing work


  17. Actually, I just read the first two Authority trades by Ellis and Millar and while I did enjoy the Ellis ones quite a bit that opening Millar story was just terrible. Every obnoxious thing that I hate about his writing was on full display there. The new Authority stuff by by DnA, on the other hand, sounds really good so I might just have to check in with these characters once again.

    Of all the Wildstorm Universe characters though, I am probably most familiar with Gen 13. It’s funny, I thought the opening Gen 13 run by its original creators was pretty much terrible but there were at least two very good and pretty overlooked runs that I don’t know if you guys are familiar with. John Arcudi teamed up with none other than Gary Frank for a couple of years of really good character based adventure stories that make you really like these characters. There was also Adam Warren’s run, which had art of varying quality, that had a realy kinetic, youthful feel to it. If you get a chance, they’re both well worth seeking out.

  18. Gage started PHD.  Micah Ian Wright was Team Achillies.

  19. @convoy83 – thanks for clearing that up for me.  I can’t fault anyone for admitting that they were doing too much and made a choice to ease that load in order to work on their craft.  And based on that if DC came calling with a check that had several zeros on it, sounds like a win-win for all involved.

  20. I’ve only read a little Wildstorm (EX MACHINA, a lot of the America’s Best Comics line, and some of Ellis’ AUTHORITY run), so it was great to get a bigger context to those stories and find out a little more about, well, everything. And thanks for the good use of pictures from the comics as you talked. I know that you always do that, but since I had such limited knowledge on this topic, I found it extra-useful.

    Thanks so much, guys! 

  21. BTW…if i remember correctly, Jim Lee first separated Wildstorm from Image and published by his own for a while, then sold to DC Comics.

  22. Wooooooo WildStorm!


    Other items of note include Warren Ellis’s Red, Mek, Tokyo Storm Warning, Desolation Jones, and Global Frequency; the Adam Warren era Gen13; The Cliffhanger line; etc.


  23. @Tork – Well played…

  24. Yay!  Some Wildstorm love!

     For all of you asking for Wildstorm info, check out the Wildstorm Resource Wiki:



  25. So can we expect an episode on Planetary soon. I think it deserves a bit more then a mention…eh eh?

  26. I… I never really liked Planetary…

  27. Planetary and Desolation Jones were the only ones I feel were overlooked in what was a pretty comprehensive look at Wildstorm. I seem to remember you guys doing an ABC episode or maybe just an Alan Moore episode which covered that in more detail.

    The Ellis and Millar runs are some of the best superhero comics ever written and deserve to be on everyone’s bookshelf. You can get them in either 4 tpbs or 2 Absolutes (although the Absolutes may be difficult to come by these days). 

    I’ld also really recommend the Coup D’Etat and both Authority: Revolution trades by Ed Brubaker. They take place roughly between Sleeper Season 1 and 2 and there’s a great Sleeper one-shot with art by Jim Lee in the Coup D’Etat trade that gives a lot of info about Lynch waking up from his coma.

    Since watching this podcast I’ve bought both DnA’s Authority and Alan Moore’s WildC.A.T.s online – the iFanboy crew is gonna bankrupt me! 🙂

  28. I was a huge Wildstorm fan when I picked up WildC.A.T.S. issue one back in the day because I had just gotten into Image comics with the first issue of Spawn and it was a refreshing change to the DC or Marvel universes I have been trying to get back into Wildstorm because I got out of it for a while. I have just started reading The Authority and I am loving it.

  29. @Josh Color me sad faced. Great show none the less. Really want to check out World’s End now.

  30. I’ve been reading the four core Woildstorm books since World’s End, and I have found it hit or miss.  So for the first time since the reboot I didn’t pick up Authority this week (I had planned to drop the entire line).  Now maybe I will reconsider.

  31. I just saw on the wildstorm blog that they mention it video

  32. i meant this not it

  33. I’ve always loved Mr. Majestic, esp. those issues written by Joe Casey with art by one of my favorite artists Ed McGuinness. Those were big, cosmic Superman stories in a time when the Man of Steel himself was being grounded, and saddled with the baggage of creators who, I think, were a tad too self-aware, too concerned with his big blue boy-scout image. And what I love about Mr. Majestic is, in spite of his power set, he is not Superman. He doesn’t have that human herritage, instead he’s very alien, from a warrior culture no less. I sort of liken the character to "Klingon Superman."

    Just my two cents on my favorite WildStorm character that’s not related to "Ex Machina" or "Astro City."


  34. I went a picked the new issue of Wildcats up today (friday) after watching the podcast. I have read everything since worlds end and had just kinda gotten tired of it and decided to drop the line. Man I am glad I reconsidered! The newest issue is great and I’m looking forward to the next issue!

  35. Always loved Wildstorm and read all the core titles for years.  Gage’s run on Stormwatch: PHD is one of my favorites on any series.  Also, Welcome to Tranquility was a blast and I can’t wait for new stories there.  Thanks for spotlighting this awesome line.

  36. Wow I haven’t picked up a Wildstorm for over a decade.I miss those years of Jim Lee’s WildC.A.T.S. and J. Scott Campbell’s Gen 13. Even though the comics from that time were a bit trandy as far as the superhero genre goes. Quick question for you three, have you guys ever read the the "Fire from Heaven" storyline back in the late 90’s. If so, what are your thoughts on that story arc? See you guys Wednesday!

  37. In the early 2000s I was completely hooked on Authority, Planetary, and WildCATs. Wildstorm has a history of great material.

    Filip Sablik
    Publisher, Top Cow Productions
    Get a FREE Witchblade trade from http://www.instocktrades.com !

  38. Damn ifanboy, I dont have money for the awesome books you speak of!  The Authority, Sleeper, rekindling the flame for Ex Machina and Astro City…Don’t you guys know I don’t have money for this!?!

  39. Inspired by this episode I bought and burned through Warren Ellis’ Stormwatch and Authority runs in about a week. Fantastic. I absolutely loved how original and just plain interesting characters like Jack Hawksmoor and Jenny Sparks were and Hitch’s art is great on the whole run.  Plus the Aliens/Stormwatch/Wildcats crossover was maybe the greatest inter-company crossover I’ve ever read.  

    My only disappointment was that the Ellis/Hitch team only ran 11 issues on the Authority. The 2nd trade is 1/2 Millar/Quitely and I really did not care for the direction Millar seemed to be taking the book and especially how he completely undermined the Apollo/Midnighter dynamic by making Apollo edgier and more aggressive and liberally peppering in the jokes about their relationship.

  40. Marvel douche thing? Care to explain that Josh?

  41. @Mangaman its refers to the controversy over a fake ad in an issue of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

  42. I really love the Wildstorm univers but like many dropped off after Worlds End. Guess I will have to go back and get those trades.

  43. Yes!!  Wildstorm!!  I’m sure all you guys had no idea they’d be gone before the year was out, did you??

  44. I like the wildstorm brand. i kind of want that universe to pop in and out of DC but i totally understand why that wouldn’t happen. this is another episode i really like. thanks

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