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NYCC: Bendis Brings New Series & Old Friends To DC

Brian Michael Bendis has always brought excitement to his own spotlight panels, and his final one of New York Comic Con was no exception as he released a slew of new projects and details for his DC Comics work.

The writer started by showcasing art from his Jinxworld line of creator-owned books. He highlighted Pearl which he’s creating with his Jessica Jones co-creator Michael Gaydos. The artist joined Bendis on stage to talk about the story of tattoos and the Yakuza, and the pair announced that the book will now continue beyond its initially planned mini series format and become an ongoing thanks to strong sales orders. ”I’m having so much fun experimenting,” the artist said. “I can only see it getting better.” In the second arc, Pearl will travel to Japan to take on her tormentors.

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Lomgtime collaborator Alex Maleev joined the panel to show off a look at the next arc of Scarlet where the next American Revolution breaks out in Bendis’ home of Portland. The pair also spoke briefly about how DC had tried to recruit them for Batman during their Daredevil days but it never being the time. When that time will come has yet to be seen.

Wonder Comics comes this January, and Bendis welcomed Patrick Gleason to the stage to share the already announced news that the Superman partners would launch the line with a new Young Justice. “I’d been thinking about Young Justice all year thinking of the TV show coming back and going ‘Why aren’t they publishing this?’” the artist said.

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Many new characters are on tap for the series including new-to-the-team hero Amethyst of Gemworld. “Everytime a Crisis happens in the DC Universe, something weird happens in Gemworld, and now they know whose fault it is.”

A totally new character is Jenny Hex — the descendent of Jonah Hex who discovers a trunk of mystery and will be introduced in the very next issue if the Wal-Mart Batman series by Bendis and Nick Darington.

Another new character that is being created by Bendis and Gleason for the line is a “Green Lantern hacker” inspired by Gleason’s desire to make a character smart enough to hack into a power battery and take it over and Bendis’ inspiration after meeting a Bolivian teen who can build machines like Tony Stark.

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Another new character who will appear in their own series is Naomi with joining panelists David Walker and Jamal Campbell joining as Walker explained how the character was conceived while Bendis was ill in the hospital — a young woman of color who’s growing up in an all-white town who begins to look into her own pre-adoption past to discover a secret that will introduce a whole new mythology to the DC Universe with ripple effects stretching across Wonder Comics and other books.

Two new series that will join the line reinvent classic DC kids concepts for the modern era: The Wonder Twins and Dial H for HERO. The former will be written by Mark Russel and illustrated by Stephen Byrne, the latter of whom joined the panel. Bendis joked that the man who made The Flinstones a hit book will have plenty of weird things to do with the powers of animal and water forms in a drama where a teenager brother and sister awkwardly share a psychic rapport.

Dial H will be written by Bendis’ longtime friend Sam Humphries with art from Joe Quinones who joined the panel to show off his first cover and explain their approach. The artist well known for his chameleon-like versatility said that many of the new hourlong heroes created by the dial will be inspired by various forms of comics from classic manga to indie comics to ‘90s Image titles. Bendis called the dial the greatest MacGuffin in the DCU and shared that everyone will be chasing after its new owner Miguel. The writer also revealed that the series will address the fate of former dial owner Robbie Reed.

As the floor opens to questions, Bendis revealed many behind-the-scenes details of incoming books. He said that his first call after pitching Young Justice was to the owners of Milestone Entertainment to see if they wanted him to put Static on the team to keep him active while they prep the relaunch of that world. They said no thanks, but Bendis remains excited to see the new Milestone debut.

In upcoming issues of Superman, young Jonathan Kent’s story will see pages drawn by his Age of Ultron collaborator Brandon Peterson. Asked if Lor Zod AKA Chris Kent was on the table for his run, he said yes but would not confirm if that meant there was a plan.

A fan asked if Bendis had plans for any big events at DC, and he replied that for him, all events should come from story ideas first, and so for now he is focusing on building up his stories in his ongoing titles.

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