[Flash #170]Curious about Geoff Johns' run on DC Comics' "The Flash?"

Last Wednesday's new issue marks the beginning of the "Blood Will Run" storyline in the book, and marks the beginning of him writing as the book's permanent writer. (The previous Johns-written arc, "Wonderland," was written as a trial run for the permanent job.) It features a new look for the series, tweaks to the book's setting and apparently a fairly important change in the status quo of the Flash's supporting cast.

Of course, if you decide that's not for you, there's Johns' money back guarantee.

"Someone posted they didn't like the issue" on the Usenet, Johns told the Comic Wire on Saturday. "I offered to buy it back from anyone who didn't want it. So, yeah."

If you bought "Flash" #170 and want your money back, send the issue to:

    Geoff Johns

    4000 Warner Blvd. #102

    Burbank, CA 91522

Johns will send back the price of the issue, along with the cost for postage.

This isn't the first time that Johns has taken care of his readers out of pocket. Long-time Comic Wire readers may remember him giving out free copies of "Stars & STRIPE" #1 to those who sent him a self-addressed stamped envelope.

That initiative was a success, Johns said.

"I actually had to go pick up as many issues as I could find at the local stores. But it was great. Yes, the book ended, but I'd do it again."

[The Flash]This isn't the sort of offer one sees often, presumably because of the potential for one to bankrupt themselves doing it. Johns isn't too worried, though.

"I mean, CrossGen is offering a money-back thing I believe. Look, I may ultimately get some issues sent back to me -- but I believe so much in [penciller] Scott Kolins, [inker] Doug Hazelwood and [colorist] James Sinclair that I will stand by it."

Of course, having said that, Johns may not end up losing his shirt, as the response of the majority of readers (including those posting at CBR's own Flash message board) has been "amazingly positive. I'm psyched."

Among the changes made to the title are fairly dramatic ones to its setting of Keystone City. Once an Any Metropolis, USA (pardon the expression) like so many other settings for DC's iconic heroes, Johns plans on fleshing out Keystone, giving it a distinct skyline, street names and history. It also stands out for being an industrial town, as opposed to the apparently white collar industry towns of Metropolis, Gotham, Opal City, Gateway City and the rest.

"I went with the "blue collar" feel of Keystone for several reasons," Johns said, "We don't have that in DC, the word KEYSTONE itself needs to imply something -- in this case, the keystone of heavy industry and I think it reflects Wally West himself. A normal, not overly educated guy. Being born in Detroit also helps a lot.

"I just think Flash sums it up best -- 'I was BUILT in Keystone City.'"

And for "Flash" readers who aren't interested in that money back offer, Johns had good news for a poster on CBR's Flash board:

"Glad you liked 170 -- and trust me, Scott is not going anywhere. We're in it for the long haul and have plans all the way through 200."


Three things are inescapable for comics fans: Death, taxes and rumors of the long-awaited "JLA/Avengers" crossover book from DC and Marvel Comics.

The latest mutation of the "JLA/Avengers" crossover book rumor surfaced late last week on several comic news Web sites. Allegedly, artist George Pérez, long the anointed artist for the project, will be working on the book soon. Although he's gone exclusive with CrossGen, he has the right to do the "JLA/Avengers" project if the two companies ever work out their differences. (Legal disagreements unrelated to the project reportedly have stalled collaborations between the two.)

Rich Johnston's column at Silver Bullet Comics even went so far as to say that Pérez's former "Avengers" collaborator, Kurt Busiek, is currently working on the script and will be handing it off to Pérez in March.


"I am not working on a script," Busiek told the Comic Wire on Sunday. "I'd love it if there was forward motion on this, and I'd love to be involved if it happens. And I've been hearing rumors on this for years now.

"But I haven't heard that any deal's been signed, and I'm not working on a script."


[Planetary]Fans of "Planetary" artist John Cassaday's art may have missed out on his art in the gap since the last issue of the WildStorm comic, but 2001 looks to have plenty of his work on the way to comic shop shelves.

In addition to the "Planetary/Batman: Night on Earth" crossover (which is apparently part of the reason issues of "Planetary" have been fewer and farther between of late), Cassaday's art will be turning up in the Summer 2001 'Wildcats/Spartan' one shot (Cassaday inks, Joe Casey writing, John Lucas writing); the covers of "Transmetropolitan" #43-45, "Legion Worlds" and a six issue arc of "Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight;" "Planetary" itself (issue #14 is currently scheduled for a March 14 release) and three Planetary action figures -- Elijah Snow, Jakita Wagner and the Drummer, each with Planetary logo stands, are scheduled for a May 2001 release.



Sure, they've smashed a dictator out of his ivory tower with the keel of their interdimensional spacecraft, battled natural disasters on a Biblical scale, and even killed an alien being that might have been God.

But for the heroes of Authority and Stormwatch before them, the real threat was their old boss, Henry Bendix.

This summer, he's back, in a flashback issue of DC/WildStorm's "Monarchy" at least.

"Once again, thanks everyone for your continued support," series writer Doselle Young posted on DC Comics' official Monarchy board this weekend. "As this is my first monthly, I think its been really interesting to see how things shape up over the next few months. I think the book really begins to come into its own in the over the first few issues ...

"As I've said, we'll have a fill-in artist for Issue#5, which starts a brand-new arc kicking off with the first post-'Stormwatch' appearance of Henry Bendix ... as you've never seen him before."


If only it had worked this way in Florida.

Voters for the rec.arts.comics Usenet groups comics awards -- better known as the Squiddies -- should know have received confirmation of their votes by e-mail by press time. (If not, you've got the digital equivalent of hanging chad and need to write to questions@squiddies.org to see what's up with your vote.

Squiddies administrator Carl Henderson posted the news to the Usenet Saturday and said votes are being tallied now: "We will be finalizing the vote count over the next several days, and results should be released next week."


Here's what's news and press releases in CBR's Comic Brief since the last edition of the Comic Wire, now with twice the functionality of regular Comic Brief:

  • Ukrainian Artist Makes American Debut at SLG
  • The Coffin on the way to the big screen
  • Legion Worlds complete creative line-up announced by DC
  • CrossGen staff grows once again


A special thanks to Scott Tilson.

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