Brian Michael Bendis Taking Over “Action Comics” and “Superman”

Taking Over the Reins on Superman with New MAN OF STEEL Weekly Miniseries in May, New SUPERMAN #1 and ACTION COMICS #1001 Ongoing Series in July

Last November, best-selling writer Brian Michael Bendis set tongues to wagging in the comic book world when he announced that he would be joining DC Entertainment as part of a “multifaceted” deal. Today both DC and Bendis have revealed the first details on what he has in store for fans.

Bendis’ first DC story will be with fan-favorite artist Jim Lee in ACTION COMICS #1000 (on sale April 18), but this is only the beginning when it comes to his relationship with Krypton’s Last Son. On May 30, Bendis debuts MAN OF STEEL, a six-issue weekly miniseries. Featuring six interconnected covers by Ivan Reis and Joe Prado, this series will shake up the classic story of Krypton’s final days and Kal-El’s path to becoming an iconic hero, introducing a new villain that knows a terrifying secret behind the destruction of Superman’s homeworld. Bendis’ story will feature an incredible lineup of artistic firepower, including Ivan Reis, Evan “Doc” Shaner, Ryan Sook, Kevin Maguire, Adam Hughes and Jason Fabok. A prelude to MAN OF STEEL by Bendis and artist Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez will be available on May 2, in the DC NATION #0 preview sampler.

This July, more fireworks are in store for fans with not one, but two Superman-themed titles, both written by Bendis. July 11 debuts SUPERMAN #1, with art by Ivan Reis. The conclusion of MAN OF STEEL will leave both fans and Superman reeling, and the debut story arc will dive deeper into its consequences, building on popularity already generated by co-writer Peter J. Tomasi and co-writer/artist Pat Gleason. On July 25, ACTION COMICS resumes with issue #1001; with art by Gleason, Bendis will deliver stories that are more character-focused, introduce new characters (both heroes and villains) and spotlight more of Clark Kent and his role at the Daily Planet. ACTION will also take a closer look at how the actions of Superman impact the DC Universe.

In an exclusive interview with Forbes.com, Bendis gives a few more details…

While keeping as much secret as he could, Bendis was willing to give us a little hint about what to expect from the miniseries. “The Man of Steel story will debut a huge new villain, a blockbuster villain who connects deeply to Superman’s origin story and to his birthright,” Bendis revealed. “We’re going to dig in very hard, this is one of my goals, to be a additive to Superman as possible. The characters we debut right away, including this new villain, will send ripples of horror across the entire Superman family and beyond!”

After Man of Steel‘s publication, Bendis will take over writing duties on the monthly titles Superman and Action Comics. The Superman monthly will relaunch with a new issue #1 on July 11, while Action Comics picks up with issue #1001 on July 25, and each will have a different approach and tone. While the main Superman title will be an adventure-driven book, Action Comics will delve into Clark Kent’s daily life.

But when the two regular monthlies pick back up, things won’t be the same in Superman’ world. “The fallout of Man of Steel #6 is enormous,” Bendis insists. “It’s some of the biggest status quo changes to Superman literally since Crisis. So we’ll be launching Superman with a brand new #1, and that’s going to be very Superman-focused and big DC action stories. Action Comics will be launching with #1001, I’m very happy to say, and that will be focused more on Clark and Metropolis and the Daily Planet, and how the world of Superman effects the world of DC.”

Bendis sounds energized as he lays out the extent of his plans, and credits the creative freedom of his deal with DC for helping galvanize his imagination. “It’s pretty elaborate plotting and I’m excited about it,” he said. “It’s all new toys, all new characters – we’ll be introducing a lot of new characters, both heroes and villains. DC set up a situation where my partnership with them is so exciting, it inspires me to create as many new thing as possible. And Superman is long overdue for it.”

That said, it’s important to understand this will not be a “reboot” of the character or his world, something that might disturb some fans and purists. “For those who are worried, they should not be,” assures Bendis. “The last runs on Superman by Dan Jurgens and Peter Tomasi and Pat Gleason have been phenomenal runs, and my run will be following their runs. We’re not throwing anything out, we’re not abandoning anything, we’re following what’s been going on and taking it to surprising new areas.”

Read the complete interview at Forbes.com.

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23 Comments on "Brian Michael Bendis Taking Over “Action Comics” and “Superman”"

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Nate1986
Member
I cannot wait for this. 2018 is of course Superman’s 80th Anniversary, and we’re getting a crap ton of Superman goodies by one of the industry’s amazing talents. Now for the elephant in the room, as seen with the cover, the trunks: I only felt the trunks were problematic when the reasons for it as time moved on into the modern world kept getting smaller and smaller until it didn’t have any reason to exist anymore. The redesigns were great (hell, even what they had in mind with the Superman V films were fine), from the comics to other media,… Read more »
liheibao
Member

Trunks forever!

MattComics
Member

Don’t know that I trust Bendis with this.

..but I’m enjoying the Ivan Reis art.

BMoore25
Editor

Yeah I’m quite terrified of what would happen if he just stops caring about continuity and does whatever with the character, I’ve heard very positive things about his writing, it’s just one of the caveats to his writing skills are continuity issues, as in sometimes he just ignores continuity altogether, but here’s hoping the great stories continue

s-shield
Member
I feel like I’ve been here before. A writer famous for decade-long runs on characters comes to Superman, I get really excited, and then they’re gone in a year and a half. It happened with Geoff Johns. It happened with Grant Morrison. I really hope it doesn’t happen here. Bendis is always a fun writer, and at times is a great writer when he’s fired up or has a personal investment in the character. That seems to be the case here, and I would love nothing more than for him to do a ten-year long, Ultimate Spider-Man level run on… Read more »
bhof
Member
I was VERY nervous until I saw this wasn’t a reboot. I’ve been extremely happy with what Jurgens and Tomasi/Gleason have done. I’m still a bit nervous about their runs ending, but not nearly as much as I was. I’m also very excited. Johns and Morrison wrote some of my favorite Superman runs, but I definitely felt like quality declined after each left. Hopefully Bendis will do well and stay on a while. Or at least pull a Byrne and lay a foundation for more great storytelling after his departure. Also, I think it’s really dumb to restart Superman’s numbering… Read more »
Jeremiahboor
Member

Not only do they leave quick but most don’t fare that well on the book in the first place. I’m thinking Azerello, Busiek, Robinson, JMS, Simone, Yang, Diggle, Lobdell, and Perez.

I’ve been looking—in vain—for long term, high quality writing since Loeb left Superman, like, 14 years ago?

Bendis could be the answer, or just another to tack on the list.

NeoRanger
Member

I cannot even begin to guess what changes to the status quo “since Crisis” this could probably be. I’ve heard it all before and we’ve pretty much done everything before. At least, I do find interesting the relationship they’re trying to build between the two on-going titles.

MattComics
Member

Basically is it going to be
SUPERMAN by Brian Bendis or is it going to be superman by BRIAN BENDIS!

docreeler
Member

If you don’t like Brian Bendis, you can still read Super Sons.
I don’t have an opinion either way on Mr. Bendis and what I am about to write is no reflection on him, but I will definitely miss Dan Jurgens. He is by far my all-time favourite Superman writer.

Kal L
Member
I have a very Deja Vu feeling about this… Last time something like this was done/promised was 1986 mini series by John Byrne coincidentally also titled “Man of Steel”. Glad to see the red trunks back, though I was enjoying the current look also. One wonders if the events of Doomsday Clock will lead to this new “direction”… Similar to what Crisis of Infinite Earths did back in 1986. As for Bendis, he has been very hit and miss for me with what I’ve read of his work in the past. He works best on street level characters in my… Read more »
Jeremiahboor
Member

25% excited
25% anxious
50% nervous

He could be great. He could be dismal. Seems like Superman always gets screwed in these situations. Like writers never bring their A game when expectations are high. We’ll see.

Jeremiahboor
Member

I am looking forward to the emphasis on the Daily Planet cast. I think that’s when the book is at its best.

MattComics
Member

Well really I think it’s having that balance. You spend time at the Daily Planet and then you can have the fun of when he changes to Superman and back again. Plus, with Daily Planet cast it’s nice that not everybody important in his life is a superhero or superpowered. I think of it as “mortal contrast”.

By having that, it makes each more interesting than they are on their own IMO.

supermilt
Member

Man I wish I still collected the print comics. This is going to be such an exciting time to be a Superman Fan.

MattComics
Member

It’d be more exciting if they weren’t looting his mythology for tv shows while treating him like Kryptonite.

Duke
Member

RIP Superman, this clown ruined Marvel and now he’s going to destroy the greatest hero ever.

liheibao
Member

This is going to sell like hotcakes. Now, will it be any good????

svillar13
Member

I’m a little worried I really like Jurgen’s and Tomasi’s runs respectively. They have really nailed Superman’s character. I haven’t been this happy with Superman comics for a very long time and I’m talking about from way before Flashpoint cause New Krypton and on was very dismal for me.

I hope Bendis brings his A-Game and yeah I am glad they aren’t rebooting the character again.

Super El
Member

Bendis is said to be at his best in regards to street level heroes like Jessica Jones, Spider-Man and Daredevil.

His handling of characters like Ares and She-Hulk have left me worried that he’s going to do the same with Superman.

Still tho, I haven’t seen a writer campaign this hard for the character in a while. Good to know that there is still some actual passion for the character after having writers shift focus to others or treat him like some second choice and such. I hope he does well, all things considered.

Duke
Member

If only you guys knew what kinda person Bendis is you wouldn’t be excited for this. He ruined Marvel and he will ruin Superman unless he’s kept on a tight leash.

Read about what he has done to Spider-Man, Iron Man, Iceman and many other characters at Marvel.

Then wait for your depression to kick in

MattComics
Member

All the stuff with fallout and biggest status quo changes yada yada , does it always have to be “everything you know is wrong!” How about a writer coming on the book with the intent of just telling some good Superman stories?

kal-bert
Member
Does this mean that Dan Jurgens quits Action Comics after issue #1000? If this is it, then really bad news for me. I’d better have New52’s suit if it means Jurgens stays in Action. And all know how much I hate that suit. But I like them starting to focus a little more in Clark and the planet. I’ve been feeling that his life as Clark, the whole Clark not just “Clark Kent, father and husband” has been missing. The only part Jurgens failed to bring us. The other Superman comic does it even worse turning Superman into a “Sideshow… Read more »