While industry star Andy Kubert (“Batman: Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader? “) was a featured guest at Fan Expo in Toronto – and boasted one of the longest queues when it came to autograph seekers – the artist was noticeably absent from the DC Nation and DC Universe panels on Friday and Saturday.
That was too bad for fans eager to learn more about “Flashpoint,” the 2011 Flash-centric mega event he’s illustrating for DC Comics, which is written by superstar writer Geoff Johns. Teased in the closing two pages of “The Flash” #1 in April 2010, all that is known about “Flashpoint” so far is that it features the speedsters and whatever threat they’re up against has somehow changed the futures, pasts (or alternate realities) of Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman.
Having flown back to New York immediately following his Saturday signing, CBR News spoke to Kubert earlier this week from his office at The Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art in Dover, New Jersey, but unfortunately there were still scarce details he could share about his highly anticipated collaboration with Johns.
The artist responsible for a landmark run on “X-Men” in the 1990s also responded to Dan DiDio’s Fan Expo musings where the DC Co-Publisher teased that he would love to see Kubert – who illustrated Grant Morrison’s stories featuring Bruce Wayne’s son in “Batman” #666 and #700 – draw a Damian Wayne miniseries.
CBR News: We’re not sure what you can say just yet, but the big project you have coming up is “Flashpoint” with Geoff Johns.
Andy Kubert: I can tell you everything from the beginning to the end, including all the characters from Day 1 – the whole thing. I hope you have enough tape! [Laughs] No, really, the only thing I can say about it is that it is a project that I’m working on with Geoff Johns. That’s all I can say. Oh, and that it has The Flash in it.
Fair enough – it is a year or so away. In the meantime, can you tell us about hooking up with Geoff? Was it a result of the experience your brother Adam had with him on “Action Comics” for the “Superman: Last Son” arc?
No, actually it came about a while ago. I was talking with [DCU Co-Publisher] Dan DiDio and he just asked me if I would be interested in working on The Flash for my next project. I said, “Sure. I would love to.” I knew nothing else about it. I didn’t know who was writing it. I didn’t know where the story was going. I had no idea, but I was definitely interested in it. It turned out Geoff was writing it, and Geoff and I always talked about wanting to work together on a book. It just worked out this way.
Are you a long-time fan of The Flash?
Oh, yeah. I used to read him growing up as a kid when my dad would bring home comics. All of Carmine Infantino’s “Flash,” I read them. I read all of those. I loved them.
Can you say if it’s Barry Allen or Wally West you’re drawing as the lead in “Flashpoint,” or perhaps even both? What about the other speedsters, like Jay Garrick and Bart Allen?
I can’t talk about anything about it. Nope.
With DC, readers usually fall into two camps: Superman or Batman. What is it about The Flash that you think resonates with fans?
He’s pretty much an everyday guy, I think, and he has everyday problems, kind of like Peter Parker. He’s just a character that hits home with a lot of people. He did with me.
There have been lots of different methods and techniques used to draw speed over the past 70 years, dating back to Jay Garrick’s first appearance in “Flash Comics” #1. How are you approaching speed in “Flashpoint?” Have you been developing your own way to execute superspeed?
Yeah, not only through the line art itself, but you can do so much with computer effects now too. That will be all under my direction, and whoever does the coloring on it will add a lot to it. There are so many different avenues that you can take with it now beyond the black and white line art. There are Photoshop things you can do and things in general that you can do to make it look really cool. We’ve been developing some new stuff along the way, too.
You’ve started drawing “Flashpoint,” and we’re looking at next summer for a release date?
Not too sure exactly when it’s coming out, but it’s around that time.
Sticking with projects you can’t talk about, at Fan Expo, Dan teased on Friday night during the DC Nation panel that it would be cool for you to do a Damian miniseries? Do you agree with his sentiments?
I loved that character, Damian, from the start. I loved doing him in “Batman” #666 and again in “Batman” #700. So for me, it would be a natural to work on him again.
But nothing to announce?