Some of DC Comics’ top talent sat down Thursday for the All Access panel at San Diego Comic-Con. On the panel were Mark Buckingham (Fables, Deadboy Detectives), Brian Buccellato (The Flash), Derek Fridolfs (Lil’ Gotham, Arkham Unhinged), Adam Hughes (Before Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan, Fairest), Geoff Johns (Aquaman, Justice League, Justice League of America), Jeff Lemire (Green Arrow, Justice League Dark), Gail Simone (Batgirl, The Movement), and Tom Taylor (Injustice: Gods Among Us).
DC Head Of Sales Bob Wayne opened the panel and introduced the members.
The previously released Trinity War trailer was shown. Johns said the video lays out the basic premise of Trinity War. Jeff Lemire mentioned that it’s interesting to see the Justice League Dark interacting with the larger DCU and that John Constantine is really the wild card of the series.
Lex Luthor will be the main character of Forever Evil. Some of David Finch‘s art was shown.
With Aquaman, Johns said he’s been asked if Aquaman will fight Sharknado. Johns said he will not, but that if he did, he would win.
Brian Buccellato came out wearing a Flash helmet and showed off his Flash tattoo. He talked about Forever Evil: Rogues Rebellion, saying, uninformatively, that the Rogues will rebel against something. The Rogues are not a typical villain team. They aren’t as serious, and they may not be as happy with the new world order of Forever Evil.
Jeff Lemire said Green Arrow will have a Zero Year tie-in with Scott Snyder’s Batman, showing Oliver Queen’s first encounter with a young Bruce Wayne. He also said the upcoming Count Vertigo issue during Villain’s Month is the darkest thing he’s ever written.
Lemire talked about Rafael Albuquerque’s upcoming run on Animal Man. He also hinted than Buddy Baker will be going on a space adventure.
Lastly, Lemire discussed his upcoming Vertigo project, Trillium, which he is writing, drawing, and coloring himself. The first issue will be a flipbook, which can be read from both ends. This will only apply to the single issue format, not the trade.
Next we moved to Fables, with series artist Mark Buckingham. Series writer/creator Bill Willingham is not present at the con. Buckingham said Willingham cleared him to say that Fables #134 will actually feature Bigby Wolf and Boy Blue (two characters who are currently dead). It’s not a dream or an alternate world. Buckingham, who lives in England, said that he and Bill usually talk in the morning. The upcoming “Camelot” arc will focus on Rose Red and her role as an embodiment of hope. Buckingham and Mike Carey, writer of The Unwritten, are both London based, so they were able to collaborate over beers. The Fables/Unwritten “crossover” involves both writers working with the other series’ artists. He said the two series worked well together because the both involve metafiction.
Gail Simone highlighted Batman’s getting punched in Batgirl #22, and lauded the art team of Fernando Pasarin and Jonathan Glapion as the best she’s ever worked with. Simone said that, in the fallout of Death of the Family and what happened with James Jr., all the characters are at their breaking point. From there, Simone went to her socially minded series, The Movement. She emphasized Freddie Williams II‘s role in giving the book a dark, gritty, realistic tone. She feels the book is a current take on a young superhero book, a modern Teen Titans. She also expressed her excitement at bringing Rainmaker, a Wildstorm Gen13 character, into the series.
Bob Wayne asked if Adam Hughes was intimidated by drawing Dr. Manhattan. Hughes joked that he was not, because Manhattan is a simple character to draw, having neither hair nor pants.
Derek Fridolfs is the co-writer of Batman: Lil’ Gotham. Fridolfs said he and series co-writer and artist Dustin Nguyen usually travel together to hashout the storylines. Then, each will take half the issue and write the script, before trading with each other to polish up. The upcoming issue of LG focuses on the Gotham City Comic-Con (Even Batman has trouble getting tickets).
Tom Taylor, who is from Australia, joked that he and Mark Buckingham are not used to being awake at the same time. He said he’s been given a lot of freedom in writing Injustice: Gods Among Us, describing it as the breakup of the World’s Finest friendship. The upcoming Injustice Annual #1 will be a Harley-Quinn/Lobo crossover.
From there, the audience was invited up to ask questions.
First, Geoff and Jeff were asked if there will be more fighting and interactions between Shazam and Superman. They said everyone will be interacting with Shazam soon, including Constantine. Both are con men, and will try to con each other.
Now that Captain Marvel is Shazam, the rest of the Marvel family will be getting new names soon.
Johns considers the end of Green Lantern #20 to be HIS definitive end for the series.
It was insinuated that Lemire may draw Animal Man at some point in the future.
While Green Arrow will eventually pair up with Black Canary, it won’t happen any time soon.
A Booster Gold cos-player asked when he will get his title back. Answers were noncommital.
Will Batgirl’s roommate’s transgender status become an issue in the series? Simone said she wanted to normalize the character. It will come up, but will not be central to the series.
They do play the DC Card Game from Cryptozoic around the DC offices.
Tom Taylor will maintain many of James Robinson‘s plot threads when he takes over Earth 2. The book will focus more on the new Batman of Earth 2.
That wrapped up the interview.
Stick with Unleash the Fanboy for all your news from San Diego Comic-Con.
Zac Boone’s hotel misspelled “pinot grigio” on the room service menu, but they still have given him a free night for his trouble. Follow him on the twitter.