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Saturday, August 9, 2003


ROSEMONT, Ill. -- With DC Comics editor-in-chief Dan DiDio claiming "this is the direction we're taking Superman from this point forward," the publisher laid out its plans not only for Superman, but for Metropolis on Friday at Wizard World Chicago.

WildStorm's Jim Lee, who is joining writer Brian Azzarello for a 12-issue stretch of Superman, teamed with DiDio to form what he called "SuperStorm," a new vision for the Superman titles, which include new creators and new spin-off titles.

"We heard the fans," DiDio said. "They felt Superman wasn't working."

The new lineup was in the works for some nine months and was put together before Grant Morrison - who has been rumored to be involved with Superman - signed his exclusive with DC. DiDio said the "toy chest is open" for Morrison.

Here's a rundown of the Superman books:

* As recent revealed, Superman is written by Azzarello and drawn by Lee. Lee said to look for some new villains.

* Adventures of Superman is written by Greg Rucka, with art by Matt Clark and Nelson DeCastro.

Rucka said Adventures will focus on Clark Kent as a reporter.

"Clark's put himself on as the crime beat report and Perry White's not his editor," Rucka said. "He works from 10 at night until six or seven in the morning. He's out chasing police cars, and that's an interesting place for Superman to be.

"Contrast that with the fact that Lois is covering the President."

Rucka, who also writes Wonder Woman, said the two characters will be getting together but not to expect any romance, likening their relationship to siblings.

* Action Comics will be written by Chuck Austen, with art Ivan Reis and Marc Campos.

Austen said he's bringing a more "down-to-Earth" approach to Superman.

"I'm trying to make him something we can relate to as human beings," Austen said. "Clark is not a perfect guy."

Austen said Lois Lane won't always have time for Clark. "He goes to Lan to vent his feelings.

As evidenced by preview art released by DC, Gog from Kingdom Come will be showing up.

* Lex Luthor: Man of Steel is written by Azzarello, with art by Lee Bejermo. The book takes Luthor's viewpoint of Superman being the bad guy. "Writing Luthor, there's an affinity that I feel," Azzarello said with a sly smile.

"From Luthor's point of view, we are only one bad day away from disaster," said Vertigo editor Will Dennis, who is assisting in the "SuperStorm" production. "When Superman gets up on the wrong side of the bed, where does that leave us?"

* The Question is written by Rick Veitch and drawn by Tommy Lee Edwards. According to Lee, Vic Sage will be a reporter who is an old acquaintance of Lois Lane.

* Vigilante is written by Micah Ian Wright, with art by Carlos D'anda.

Lee said this is an update version of the character, one who will combat white-collar crime and runs afoul of both Luthor and Superman. The book will also tie into The Question.

* Superman: Birthright, by Mark Waid and Leinil Yu, continues to fill in the holes of Superman's history.

Waid said the fourth issue features the first meeting between Clark and Lois.

"When he sees her, something's go to click right then," Waid said. "He has to fall in love right there and I think we hit upon something."

* Superman/Batman, by Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness, continues after the sell-out of its first issue. Editor Eddie Berganza said that story seeds planted earlier in the Super-titles will develop in this book.

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