Considered the crown jewel of DC Rebirth, All Star Batman was originally announced in March 2016 as a showcase for not only a treasure trove of artistic talent like John Romita, Jr., Jock and Rafael Albuquerque but also a home for Scott Snyder to continue his incredible run with the Dark Knight that started back in 2011 (pre-New 52) in Detective Comics.
Snyder has told CBR exclusively that the best-selling series will come to an end in September with the release of All Star Batman #14 but also shared that this doesn’t mark the end of his time with the world’s greatest detective. The New York Times best-selling writer confirmed that he will continue writing in continuity Batman stories with top-level artists like Sean Murphy, Afua Richardson, Lee Bermejo and Paul Pope but that they will appear in a new prestige-style format that he expects DC Comics will announce in the coming days or weeks.
Having just kicked off the mega-event Dark Nights: Metal with the lead-in, one-shot Dark Days: The Forge #1, Snyder remains a powerful voice in the DC Universe and hopes that his run with Batman can transcend title changes and format styles much like Grant Morrison’s landmark run with the Caped Crusader did that seamlessly transitioned from Batman to Batman and Robin to Batman, Inc.
CBR: We have some news for CBR readers today, and it’s bittersweet — All Star Batman is coming to an end.
Scott Snyder: That’s right. It’s hard because it’s not actually the end for me in a lot of ways. Essentially, I have started working on the arc with Sean [Murphy] already, and DC has been really excited about some new formats that they’re creating. Part of it is tied a lot of exciting editorial changes that they announced about a month ago. They’re creating bold, new initiatives – new lanes to drive in creatively – for creators to tell the kinds of stories like I was telling in All Star. They are artist-centric and a little bit left of center in ways that put the artist first, with a new artist format and with a new level of sophistication in terms of allowing for content that’s a bit more, how do I say this without spoiling stuff — adult, I guess.
How did this transition from All Star Batman to this new artist-centric format come about?
DC approached me and said, how would you like to take some of the stuff that you are working on with Sean and do it a new, prestige format? Instead of doing it monthly, why not do it in this format that would allow for it to be a bigger stage, both for Sean artistically, and to package the story in a new way and then allow every subsequent story that I was going to do with Paul Pope, with Afua [Richardson], with Lee Bermejo, be done in this format that really foregrounds the art – different paper size, different cut, the whole thing? In that way, it seemed obvious and a perfect solution instead of having them work month-to-month on a normal-sized, conventional comic, we could be some of the first people to try driving in this new lane for DC. I’m really, really thrilled about it.
That is good news. I was fearful when I heard that All Star was ending that the stories that have been teased since it was announced that were to be illustrated by industry all-stars like Sean, Afua and Paul Pope would be lost.
Again, it’s strange because the work just continues. These are the stories that I had left to do for All Star. I’m just doing them in a new format. As much as we are shuttering All Star for now as a monthly series, those stories are 100 percent coming out, and you’ll see announcements about them really, really soon. I want to be super, super clear: in no way does this mean that the story that I was doing with Sean Murphy isn’t coming. Instead, the whole reason for switching it over from the monthly series to a new format because of how excited he was about the new opportunities that came with this kind of initiative that DC is starting up and they are going to announce really soon.
And of course, there is my excitement to be a part of it, as well. It’s almost like you’re working on a monthly series, the opportunity comes to transform it or evolve it that allows the people that you’re working with a bigger stage with more creative latitude and a different kind of format and you decide [to do] that after a year-and-a-half and 15 issues in the traditional format. The whole point of the series has been to try new challenges as a writer, and write for different artists while changing my own style up, consistently. This is really just an extension of that same mindset. Ending All Star Batman allows me to write different page-length stories for different size pages in a different format and try new challenges by getting the story out there in the best way possible.
Is there anything that you can share specifically about the new format books?
No. [Laughs] I hate having to be so vague about what the initiative itself is, but until DC announces it formally, I can’t say too much about it, like what the name of it is, or what the exact definition of it is. But it’s a real thing that happening really soon that I think will excite a lot people. I am really proud to be a part of it.
And again, to clarify, these aren’t Elseworlds stories or “What If?” comics. These new stories are a further continuation of the big story that you have been telling with Batman since you started your run on Detective Comics with Jock and Francesco Francavilla back in 2011, and continued with Greg [Capullo] on Batman in The New 52.
100 percent. In fact, there are visions in the arc that I am currently doing with Rafael [Albuquerque] that connect to the story that I am doing with Sean. At this point, I feel that it’s just more of a larger conversation that I am having with the fans and the readership and with the character and with the mythology. It’s less about which book these stories land in, whether it was Detective first and then Batman and then All Star and now this new format that is coming — it’s the same theme. I loved the way that Grant [Morrison] was able to do that, which to a degree was way beyond anything that I could do, by moving from Batman to Batman and Robin to Batman, Inc. They all had a different flavor and different format and a different schedule, and yet they all spoke to the same ideas and sensibility that he brought to the character. That’s the hope here – to get to write in wildly different formats and series but have all of those different chapters be part of one big story, or one big exploration, of the character.
All Star Batman #11 by Scott Snyder and Rafael Albuquerque is available next week.