|Mike Carlin, Eddie Berganza, Ron Marz, Bob Wayne|
The panel began with jokes and took a bit of time to settle down. "We're trying to decide if we should call Geoff Johns and hang up," Bob Wayne said after the panel members had taken their seats. "Do it!" shouted members of the audience. "Ask if he has Bendis' number!" yelled one fan, inciting more laughter. The panel proceeded to reach Johns on the phone and then quickly hung up on him as promised. Bob Wayne joked repeatedly that Johns was "busy with 'Teen Wolf 8.'" After some more jokes, the panel was again interrupted, this time by DC Executive Editor Dan DiDio, calling from HeroesCon in Charlotte just as the presentation was about to begin.
Mike Carlin continued, saying they were canceling "The Flash" with #13 and relaunching the title as "All Flash #1." The reaction to this news in Philly was seemingly mild, but Wayne continually held the phone up to the room and the raucous applause to DiDio's announcement in Charlotte was audible. Wayne and Carlin continued to joke about the possibility of canceling "The Flash." "Would we do that to you? It was only a year or so ago when we said times are always tough for Flash during a Crisis but we wouldn't do that, right? Anyway... #13 is the last issue."
At this point in the panel, Ron Marz arrived, announcing that he "heard DiDio's voice and felt compelled to follow." The panel then began to show art from "Countdown" and a series of titles they unveiled on the spot. The first of these was "Countdown to Adventure," edited by Eddie Berganza. The title was described as the return from space of Animal Man, Adam Strange, and Starfire all of whom were last seen in "52." The title also features a new character named Forerunner. The project is to debut in August.
|"Countdown to Adventure" and "Countdown to Mystery" #1|
The next slide was the third title of the hour with "Countdown" in the name. Wayne advised that fans should be on look out for "Countdown Presents: The Search for Ray Palmer." The title featues Jason Todd, Donna Troy and Kyle Rayner visiting the 52 new earths of the new Multiverse born out of the conclusion of "52." The new team will be called the Challengers of the Beyond, and the first issue of "The Search for Ray Palmer" will be written by Ron Marz and feature the Multiverse debut of the Wildstorm Universe.
|"Suicide Squad" #1 and "Infinity, Inc." #1|
At this point, the panel mentioned the possibility of calling DiDio again, but Wayne nixed it, offering instead the first digits of the DC President Paul Levitz's phone number before stopping with a laugh.
Other new "52" spin-off titles debuted were "Infinity, Inc." by Peter Milligan, the cover promo to which featured prominent "52" charcters Steel and his niece Natasha Irons, and a new eight issue "Suicide Squad" mini-series by John Ostrander.
|"Justice League of America" #13|
Another fan asked about the upcoming conclusion to Gail Simone's run on "Birds Of Prey" and whether Misfit's background would be covered before Gail departs. Mike Carlin's response was that "Gail's last page explains a lot about Misfit."
When asked about Starman, Wayne responded, "Wait for the end of the 'JLA'/'JSA' cross-over before we start talking about Starman."
In a turn toward the serious, Bob Wayne addressed the reasoning behind reviving Golden Age titles even if the content itself bore little resemblance to their predecessors, a question very relevant in a panel debuting so many old titles and characters with new twists. "It's about trademarks," he answered, plainly.
Wayne added, "Yes, obviously we're a business and I'm the V.P. of Sales so when you talk about art versus the commercial, sometimes I will lean toward the commercial side. But we obviously strive for both." Thanked for his candor, Wayne jokingly mentioned the bottled city of Kandor.
Lastly, when asked whether DC has all 52 worlds of its new multi-verse mapped out, Carlin replied that there is an entire chart in the DC office with a number for each. "Yeah, but I've seen that Chart," Wayne remarked, "and Disneyworld's on it." Carlin also reminded fans that they've still left room in that planning for unexplored worlds and there are still plenty of places left to go in the multi-verse.
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