In a new interview with Newsarama, “Superman” and “Action Comics” writer Phillip Kennedy Johnson talks about the differences between the two titles, whether he’ll be continuing on threads from Brian Michael Bendis’ run, and how he’ll define his run on the Superman books. Here are a few excerpts from the interview…
Q: What are the distinct differences between the two titles, and will these two titles continue to be connected in this way?
Johnson: The Superman series will feature both Clark and Jon; Action Comics will be more Clark-centric, although Jon will appear in that book too, alongside more of Superman’s cast. This March two-part crossover with Phil Hester will set up both series, but after that the two series tell two very different and independent stories.
Q: Will you be carrying over any threads from Brian Michael Bendis’ run?
Johnson: Yes. Superman’s identity as Clark Kent is still out there, and there are other threads from Brian’s run that we’ll continue with (but too spoilery to get into here).
But the biggest and most important plot thread is definitely Jon’s trajectory. Because of Jon’s role in the formation of the United Planets and his time in the future with Legion, he’s become a hugely important character in Superman lore. His power levels are also potentially even greater than Clark or Kara, so that alone makes him a very big deal going forward.
Q: What are some elements you feel helps define your new run from other Superman stories?
Johnson: If I had to sum it up in one word, I would say: worldbuilding. I think one element that put me on the Super-editors’ radar was the massive worldbuilding we did for The Last God at DC Black Label, and I’m trying to bring the same level of depth, scope, and intricacy to the Superman titles.
After all the time and energy spent recently in Metropolis, on The Daily Planet and the people who work there, I saw an opportunity to go really, really big, to tell an epic saga that spans galaxies, shows new races and cultures, and makes the DC Universe feel much older but also newer.
We’re putting together a Super-crew that you definitely will not expect, and they’re going to rock the DC Universe in a way I haven’t seen in a Superman comic since the Death and Return.