There were a significant number of new comics announced at this year’s Chicago Comics & Entertainment Expo (C2E2), but one piece of news dominated the convention: Frank Miller returning to Batman for The Dark Knight III: The Master Race. Miller is co-writing the Fall 2015 series with Brian Azzarello while an unannounced creator handles the artwork, and judging by the subtitle, readers should expect more of the heavily political, borderline offensive content of Miller’s recent work like Holy Terror!, which itself began as a Batman story. Otherwise, the convention was light on DC news, with most of the publisher’s panels teasing the already-announced runs kicking off in June after Convergence.
As expected, most of Marvel’s news revolved around its upcoming Secret Wars event and assorted tie-ins: Howard The Human is a one-shot by writer Skottie Young and artist Jim Mahfood that reimagines Howard The Duck as a human private investigator in a city full of animals; Secret Love is a romance anthology featuring work by Michel Fiffe, Felipe Smith, Jeremy Whitley, Katie Cook, and Gurihiru; and Hank Johnson: Agent Of Hydra teams Curb Your Enthusiasm executive producer David Mandel with Secret Avengers artist Michael Walsh for a humor-driven series about the Deadpool supporting character.
Marvel’s ubiquitous peace-keeping organization S.H.I.E.L.D. has its 50th anniversary this year, and Marvel is celebrating with a variety of one-shots by creators like David Walker, Kathryn Immonen, Jody Houser, Chelsea Cain, Matt Rosenberg, and Patrick Kindlon. The ongoing S.H.I.E.L.D. series by writer Mark Waid will feature unseen pages by Marvel masters Jack Kirby and Jim Steranko in issue #9, and Jonathan Hickman and Dustin Weaver’s long-delayed S.H.I.E.L.D. miniseries will conclude this September.
In terms of new series, Drax from Guardians Of The Galaxy will get an ongoing title co-written by wrestler CM Punk, although the rest of the creative team is yet to be announced. With Gamora and Groot also receiving ongoing series this year, this means every member of the Guardians now has a solo book in the works. But the biggest announcement from Marvel was Miracleman By Gaiman And Buckingham, reprinting Neil Gaiman and Mark Buckingham’s long out-of-print issues of Miracleman before the two creators finally conclude the story they started well over 20 years ago. This is what Marvel’s acquisition of the Miracleman rights has all been leading up to, and it will be very interesting to see if the creative team can deliver a satisfying conclusion decades after their original run.