BOSTON: DC's "Crisis Counseling" Panel @ Wizard World

Dan DiDio, Greg Rucka, and Bob Wayne conducted another "Crisis Counseling" panel to a packed room at Wizard World Boston Friday afternoon to discuss the buildup thus far to "Inifinite Crisis" and to discuss their vision of the future of the DC Universe.

In homage to the Boston crowd, Dan DiDio mentioned that he was a New York Mets fan and hated the Yankees just as much as anyone else in the room, a comment which gathered a great deal of applause. Once the commotion died down, an abashed Greg Rucka noted that he was from Oregon, and so he followed the Mariners, so he had no dog in the fight.

Once the baseball talk ended, Dan DiDio announced that because this was the last Crisis Counseling Panel to convene before the distribution of "Infinite Crisis" #1, this was his "last chance to be vague, lie, and beat around the bush." Both DiDio and Rucka encouraged people in the crowd to post completely fabricated stories on the Internet in order to build controversy. In particular, Rucka seemed intent on starting a rumor that as a result of "Infinite Crisis," Black Canary would become a man. How this would affect her relationship with Oliver Queen was left up in the air.

After that, DiDio took a few minutes to discuss his vision for the DC Universe. In particular, he wants fans reading DC books to get the feel of a fuller, richer universe. He indicated that this is one of the reasons why the four miniseries leading into "Infinite Crisis" tended to focus on second-tier characters-- to build the sense of a great world.

Then the panel was opened up to a Q&A session.

  • One member of the crowd asked if there was a chance for DC to revive the idea of anthology series. DiDio commented that although he personally loved anthologies, the problem is that they don't sell very well. In fact, Bob Wayne pointed out that even in their heyday, anthologies didn't sell as well as ongoing stories did.
  • Another fan asked if "Infinite Crisis" was going to destroy the current continuity and replace it with a new baseline. DiDio immediately responded that "Infinite Crisis" was "not another baseline attempt." Rucka emphasized this point, saying that, "We like our continutity."

    One thing DiDio did point out is that as a result of "Infinite Crisis," the incongruities in continuity since "Crisis on Infinite Earths" would be resolved by the new series. Rucka went further and stated that "Infinite Crisis" was, in fact, a sequel to "Crisis on Infinite Earths," "in the same sense that 'The Two Jakes' is a sequel to 'Chinatown,'" said Rucka.

  • Another fan asked what the future held for Donna Troy. DiDio responded that Troy would be returning in many different series, as she will be recruiting DC heroes on an "important mission" involving the fate of the universe.
  • The discussion then turned to whether the black kryptonite seen in "Superman/Batman" would be significant in "Infinite Crisis." DiDio simply stated that "that's a Jeph Loeb question." Rucka quickly followed by saying, "And therefore deserves no answer." After the laughter died down, DiDio clarified that the question of the black kryptonite would be resolved in the pages of "Superman/Batman."
  • Another announcement made during the panel is that Marv Wolfman will be writing a "Secret Files for Infinite Crisis," which will explain how the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" and the intervening years all feed into "Infinite Crisis," including incongruities in continuity. Dan DiDio remarked that this was the "strongest 'Secret Files' I have ever seen."
  • When asked about how Jason Todd's return would affect "Infinite Crisis," DiDio replied that his origins spin from the nature of the "Infinite Crisis," but that the Jason Todd story would be primarily resolved as a Batman story.
  • When asked whether there was any in-house debate over whether Wonder Woman should have killed Max Lord, Rucka responded, "Like you wouldn't believe." But in his mind, "Wonder Woman is a warrior, and warriors kill."
  • This discussion led into a deeper discussion of the nature of "Infinite Crisis." The basic idea, as the panel described, is that Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman are the "pillars of the DC Universe." According to DiDio, "Infinite Crisis" is primarily about what happens when "…those pillars stop holding the universe up." The conflict between these characters is primarily one of vision-- all three of them are working for the greater good, but all of them have a different idea as to how that should be accomplished.
  • Rucka also discussed the question of Jim Corrigan in the pages of "Gotham Central." He wouldn't discuss any possibility of Corrigan taking the mantle of the Spectre, but he did say that the ending of "Gotham Central" #37 is going to "blow people's minds."
  • One fan asked how the events of "Infinite Crisis" was going to affect "JLA." DiDio responded, "That assumes that there's going to be a 'JLA' book after 'Infinite Crisis.'"
  • Another fan asked what the significance of Psycho Pirate's apparent return was, since he was supposedly killed in "Animal Man." DiDio responded that Psycho Pirate's return was part of the ongoing story, and that "you can't have a Crisis without Psycho Pirate or a dead Flash." A short while later, when someone asked where Wally West would be found a year from now, the answer was simply, "In back issues." Whether these were serious remarks or an example of a fabricated story the company hopes propagates on the Internet, we'll leave as an exercise for the reader.
  • Several questions were simply answered by Dan DiDio by saying, "Next question." These questions included: Is Martian Manhunter dead? Will the Superman of Earth-2 return? Will there be multiple Lex Luthor's? Will "Infinite Crisis" feature Alexander Luthor and the Monitor?

  • When asked if Infinite Crisis would bring the DCU back to a system of multiple Earth's, DiDio simply said, "I'm not going to answer that."

Titans #33

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