Welcome to the most popular and longest running comics column on the internet. In its various forms, Lying In The Gutters has covered rumours and gossip in the comics industry for twelve long glorious and quite scary years.

All stories are sourced from well-connected individuals and checked with respective publisher representatives before publication. Mostly. The veracity of each story is judged by me and given a spotlight - Green is the most reliable, Amber means there's likely an interest involved or the likelihood isn't set and Red means even I can't quite bring myself to believe it.

Lying In The Gutters is for your entertainment. Neither Fair Nor Balanced.


[Yellow Light]I understand that Jim Shooter will return to DC Comics in the summer, working on a "Legion of Super-Heroes" title.

This is the same super hero team that Jim Shooter first wrote when he was 13 years old.


[Yellow Light]I have word from a fairly well connected fellow, that Sean McKeever will be writing a new Marvel comic - "New Warriors."

You may start your geekout-ing…. now.


[Green Light]Two weeks ago on Wednesday, Allan Heinberg posted the following to his MySpace page, concerning "Wonder Woman."

The truth about WONDER WOMAN.

Hey, everybody,

According to the good people at DC Comics, WONDER WOMAN 3 is scheduled to arrive in stores next Wednesday, November 22. Please know that everyone involved (both creatively and editorially) regrets the delay between issues, but since WONDER WOMAN is a labor of love for all involved, we're extremely grateful to DC Comics for allowing us the extra time and to the book's loyal readers for their patience and understanding.

Hope you enjoy it,


Very shortly afterwards, it disappeared, without explanation. The delays I've been told are down to considerable rewriting - based in part on internet comments made by the same people who are now decrying its lateness. How's that for irony.


[Yellow Light]In the New York Times over the weekend, DC Comics announced their new female-friendly comics line, "Minx." It's an interesting choice to name the new line. Checking the definition, I found a number of definitions, including the more modern "a pert, impudent, or flirtatious girl" as well as the less modern "a seductive woman who uses her sex appeal to exploit men." Certainly, the name is meant to raise attention, regardless the definition.

And congrats to LITG-favourite, Andi Watson, whose pitched-in-2003 comic "Clubbing," a London-based mystery set in and around nightclubs, drawn by Josh ("Dead@17") Howard is to be published next year. Four years folks, that's the current length of the pipeline.

I've also been made aware that Marvel are actively looking to create female-friendly titles for next year and are actively seeking out female talent. Could 2007 be the Comics Year Of The Woman In Comics? Or rather The Year That Marvel And DC Rediscovered That Women Have Money, Too?

The timing of the announcement is unfortunate for DC, as it occurs the weekend after Valarie D'Orazio's posted her blog "Goodbye To Comics" which continues to cause hushed discussion in the hallways at DC Comics. It's also spawned considerable discussion in online forums, both with readers expressing considerable support and sympathy for Valarie with concern about her treatment, but also those who've noted the inherent bias in her writing as it comes from a disgruntled former employee.

It may be easy to dismiss this kind of report as a one off or just the perspective one flawed person, but when compared to the experiences and observations of Joe Illidge, LA Williams, Johanna Draper Carlson and others not quite so linkable, questions are certainly raised.

Regardless, it's clear that despite some advances within the comics industry, it's still a very difficult career for women to work in, coming up against institutionalized sexism. But, as the industry expands with more and more book publishers joining the original graphic novel arena, the future looks brighter -- albeit maybe only slightly -- for women.

Because it's not just the comics that need to be more female friendly.


[Green Light]Concept art from Tony Lee and Szymon Kudransi's "Bloodbourne - Bite Of The Living Dead." Lord Malachi and Beliar.

"Dawn of The Dead" meets "Blade," apparently. Vampires versus a world of zombies. I think that's what you call a rather high concept.


[Red Light]Is Dave Gibbons creating designs for the "Watchmen" movie? No. Mr Gibbons tells me, "I have spoken to Zack Snyder about visual aspects of the proposed movie, but I certainly haven't created any new designs."


[Green Light]David Lloyd is currently in Brazil, taking part in a panel discussion about architecture. He's researching the city of São Paulo for a Brazilian comic book series "Illustrated Cities." I think. More here and here.


[Green Light]If you recall, last week I mentioned a rather prominent US comic artist had designed an ad campaign for Renault? Well, you all guessed right - it was Joe Quesada. Well done everyone.

Here's a bunch of Joe's ads for Renault. Thanks for sending them over, Joe!

[Green Light]From my MySpace forums, I understand that Jim Starlin's DC project to follow "Mystery In Space" will be "New Gods."


[Yellow Light]From a Grant Morrison Newsarama interview:

NRAMA: I must know, what happened to The Bulleteer between Seven Soldiers #1 and 52 Week 24 where she goes from being a severely reluctant hero to someone who joins a version of the Justice League (a rather makeshift version, but still)?

GM: Beats me. She's found her way into the regular DCU as a kind of cipher who crops up when writers need a 'lame' hero to stand around in crowd scenes. I have no control over how people handle the Seven Soldiers characters in my wake.

So. just how much of "52" is Grant Morrison writing anyway?


[Green Light]Mazzuchelli



[Yellow Light]From the LITG Forum and Scans Daily, referring to a story from two weeks ago, a very rude Captain America indeed.

Podcasting a Civil War.

Stewart Lee on political BBC TV comedy show "Have I Got News For You" on the controversy over British Airways asking a stewardess to stop wearing a cross pendant:

"What about people who have to wear a cross as part of their work uniform?"

"Like who, Stewart?"

"Like the X-Men."

Just as I finally succumb and buy the "From Hell" hardcover from Top Shelf, Eddie Campbell talks about a possible new version of the book for 2008, with a "Gull Catchers 2" added to the appendix. Bastards.

And this is what I've been up to at work of late.


Discuss this column at the Lying In The Gutters Forum and add your request to what you want from future columns.

Visit my MySpace as I discuss next week's column through the week.

Check whatever I'm selling on eBay ... new stuff every week all the way up to Christmas.

Contact me on richjohnston@gmail.com or on AOL Instant Messenger as TwistRich.

You can also write to me at 8 Robin Hood Lane, Kingston Vale, London SW15 3PU ENGLAND

Or call me/text me on 0780 1350982 from the UK or 01144780 1350982 from the US.

EXCLUSIVE: Buffy, Angel Covers Welcome Third, Top Secret Buffyverse Title

More in CBR Exclusives