In a recent interview with Blastr DC Comics’ CCO Geoff Johns had this to say about how the Shazam character relates to DC’s Rebirth:
Will Shazam be getting his own book? What about Justice Society and Legion of Super Heroes? And what’s the strategy to rolling it out?
“There will be a Shazam book. Not by me, but they’re definitely doing a Shazam book. One of the reasons they’re double shipping, the advantage to double-ship, is to take the number of titles and contract it, and the number of characters. Get these characters right. Then, slowly, when you’ve made sure everything’s working in a great way, then Shazam comes out. Legion of Super-Heroes comes out. Justice Society comes out. Atom comes out. All the other books can come out. But it’s important to get them done right first. It is hard to launch 52 books, and make them all great. I think it’s better to focus on fewer characters, then expand it as the emotional base is back.”
It doesn’t sound like there is an aggressive time frame. I have major doubts that Johns can lead a project that gets the character right.
But I’m very encouraged to hear Johns commit to a
Captain Marvel Shazam title in print as well as hear him emphasize the need to get the character right (particularly when combined with his note that he won’t be doing the book).
If you haven’t already, be sure and give Episode 08 a listen!
The Super-Hero World Championship is On the Line!
A Super Jerk is what he is.
I got this question via Twitter today:
— Jamie Andreassen (@WiccanBeyond) April 8, 2016
Thanks a ton for asking Jamie!
Since Twitter is a limited forum (literally; 140 characters) I thought I’d use this space to answer more thoroughly and give others a chance to read it via this site. [By the way, if any of you reading aren’t familiar with DC’s Rebirth concept you can find out more here.]
My answer comes in tiers because I have both great dreams and limited optimism.
Tier 1 would be the ultimate package: we get a Captain Marvel whose historical identity has been restored. He’s named Captain Marvel, he’s working with the spirit of a Wizard named Shazam, and the creative team (specifically involving Doc Shaner) loves the character and is writing in the long established ethos of the character. We’d also get Mary, CMJ, and the rest of the Captain Marvel family back throughout the series. Cap is a sometimes member of the Justice League and gets called in from time to time, not always to settle down a rogue Superman.
Tier 2 would be (my attempt) at a compromise position. We’re stuck with the current Shazam name it appears, based on DC’s stated intentions. That means we also have a Wizard named… Wizard I guess. However, the creative team would calibrate the character according to Ordway’s Power of Shazam!, Morrison’s Thunderworld, and Shaner’s Convergence (which means they also wouldn’t buy the apparent editorial mandate at DC that everything be grimy in appearance and morally shady in narrative), providing the classic and yet modern take on Marvel’s characterization that has created generations of fans.
Tier 3 is the level at which I’ll become furious with the project if DC doesn’t have enough sense to incorporate (not at my suggestion but rather for the sake of sanity).
And here it is, the absolute bare minimum standard that DC Comics can and should do, both in their own interests and the interest of fans:
Have a Billy Batson who isn’t a self-centered jerk.
This post is going up simply because I found myself wistfully looking forward to the publication of Scooby-Doo Team Up #16 (5/4/16). Click the image below for a higher res version of the beautiful promo art – including the wonderful bonus of Mary and Jr.
If you haven’t already be sure to give Episode 07 a listen.
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So what happens when you launch a major character’s triumphant return to comics by picking up the story exactly where it left off two decades prior? Tune in to this episode of the Shazamcast, reviewing 1973’s Shazam! #1, to find out and don’t forget to check out the As Mentioned post for this episode’s visual companion pieces.!