DC Comics: A New Era

Feb 012012
Authors: Corinne Winthrop

Boldly going where no comic-book industry has gone before, DC Comics wiped a clean slate with all 52 of its comic book series in late August. The entire line of DC titles underwent a major overhaul and has reset back to their original No. 1 issues, featuring the same iconic characters, but with an improved look.

Comic readers are now able to experience all the same major superheroes including Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash and even some more obscure characters, but from a whole different point of view. The comics have incorporated new story lines into each issue that fans have never read before.

“We really want to inject new life in our characters and line,” Dan DiDio, co-publisher of DC, told USA Today. He explained that DC is not necessarily starting all over from the beginning, but “at a point where our characters are younger and the stories are being told for today’s audiences.”

Political and social issues of the time will be a part of the stories directed toward today’s generation. “The origins are fresh — they relate to what’s going on in the world,” Eddie Berganza, executive editor at DC, said in a video on DC’s blog, “The Source.”

James Stewart, a clerk at Gryphon Games and Comics located on College Avenue, but better known as “The Comic Guy,” described how political issues have been portrayed through DC Comics in the past.

Around the 2008 presidential elections, DC created posters starring Barack Obama in a suit, ripping open his shirt to display a superhero costume underneath and the Superman symbol in the middle of his chest.

The relaunch began with “Justice League, No. 1” on Aug. 31, 2011.

“This is a great opportunity for those who aren’t familiar with our characters to jump aboard, to come join the party that is the DC universe,” Editor-in-Chief Bob Harras announced on the DC website.

In an attempt to grow its comic-book industry, DC is reinventing all new titles in hopes of bouncing back from recent years of decreasing sales. Jim Lee, co-publisher at DC, believes that the fresh look and new story lines will attract new readers as well as old fans.

“We’re trying to get people who have never even bought a comic book before excited about
the medium, excited about the stories, about these characters,” Lee said on “The Source.”

DC is also breaking new boundaries with the new line by giving readers the opportunity to experience comics online and through portable devices.

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