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MONDAY, JULY 27, 2009


SAN DIEGO -- DC Comics sprinkled in a few announcements -- Flash titles, the acquistion of T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents -- among its usual banter with audience members at the DC Universe panel at Comic-Con International on Saturday.

Panelists included DC executive editor Dan DiDio, vice president of sales, Bob Wayne, senior story editor Ian Sattler, and creators Andrew Kreisberg, , Eric Trautmann, Eric Wallace, Nicola Scott, Gail Simone, James Robinson, Scott Ian and Geoff Johns.

Following are the highlights:

* Wayne was presented with an Inkpot Award for achievement in comics arts from Comic-Con.

* DiDio previewed art from J. Michael Straczynski's first Brave and the Bold featuring Batman and Robby Reed from Dial H for Hero.

Straczynski had laryngitis and couldn't make it to the panel.

"This is a great time to have Joe working for us," DiDio said, noting his contributions to the development of the Red Circle Books. "To have him writing Batman for us right now is a good thing."

* DiDio said Doom Patrol is going back to the original team with the new series by Keith Giffen and Matthew Clark. "And you're going to see a lot of things, not just from the original incarnation of Doom Patrol, but characters from the Grant Morrison incarnation and several other variations of Doom Patrol through the years."

Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis and Kevin Maguire are reteaming for the Metal Men back-up. "It's something else various close to my heart," DiDio said.

* Johns talked about Flash: Rebirth, saying a new speedster will come out of the story and join the Flash family and it will lead into Blackest Night: Flash, which is drawn by Scott Kolins and will launch in December.

Johns will write the Flash monthly book after that.

* Mark Bagley's art for Justice League of America was shown, teasing a new lineup and setting up writer Robinson.

"At the moment, I don't think the team is everything it could be," Robinson said. "I think the team needs to be great again, the greatest team in comicdom, I believe."

Robinson said evens in Cry for Justice take place just before Blackest Night. Taking over with #38, Robinson said his first two issues will deal with Blackest Night.

"You're going to see a character I believe can be great is the female Dr. Light, and you're going to see her go against the Black Lantern, bad Dr. Light," Robinson said.

Robinson said the new team will include Mon-El in a new Superman-inspired costume based on events in the Superman books; Dick Grayson as Batman; Donna Troy, of whom he said, "I'm going to make her kick ass in this book"; and Hal Jordan Green Lantern.

The other characters are, for now, a mystery, with members being added until January, when "the real team kicks in," according to Robinson.

* The new JSA All Stars title was mentioned again, following a previous announcement.

* The Red Tornado mini-series introduces the rest of the Red family, Red Torpedo, Red Volcano and one more to be announced.

* DC has acquired the rights to T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents and will incorporate the characters into the DC Universe. Robinson said he couldn't wait to be part of the title.

* Ian talked about his two-issue Lobo mini-series with Sam Keith. "I think what Sam and I have ocme up with is going to be very pleasing to Lobo fans and non-Lobo fans alike," he said.

* Kreisberg on Green Arrow/Black Canary: "They're going to have a lot more conflict."

* DiDio said he felt the Red Circle characters could "operate and enhance" the DC Universe.

Trautmann characterized The Shield as "two-fisted military action" with the character showing up in hotspots over the world.

* Simone noted that Wonder Woman will appear in Secret Six, with a Black Alice appearance and "maybe a Secret Seven."

Teen Titans, under new writer Felicia Henderson with #75, will get a new line-up and have a couple of issues tie into Blackest Night.

* Wallace is the new writer of Titans and announced that Deathstroke will be the new leader of the team. "It's going to be pretty wild stuff," he said.

* Simone said the next two issues of Wonder Woman will have Wonder Woman and Black Canary going underground as cage fighters. "The costumes they come up with are hysterical," she said.

In the next year, Wonder Woman denounces the gods and readers will see her "more of a super hero than ever," Simone said.

* DiDio said DC has the rights to all the T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents characters.

* Sterling Gates will be writing a Kid Flash series.

* DiDio said Ambush Bug #6 should come out in "about a month."

* DiDio said the T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents will likely appear in other title before their own books.

* Johns said more about Ion will be revealed in Green Lantern Corps and Blackest Night.

* DiDio said there are "big plans" for Connor Hawke next year.

* Wayne said Wednesday Comics will be collected. Format was not disclosed.

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