Lying In The Gutters

Mon, July 24th, 2006 at 12:00am PDT

Comic Books
Rich Johnston, Columnist

LYING IN THE GUTTERS VOLUME 2 COLUMN 62

Welcome to the most popular and longest running comics column on the internet. In its various forms, Lying In The Gutters has covered rumours and gossip in the comics industry for twelve long glorious and quite scary years.

All stories are sourced from well-connected individuals and checked with respective publisher representatives before publication. Mostly. The veracity of each story is judged by me and given a spotlight - Green is the most reliable, Amber means there's likely an interest involved or the likelihood isn't set and Red means even I can't quite bring myself to believe it.

Lying In The Gutters is for your entertainment. Neither Fair Nor Balanced.

MOST ANNOYINGLY REPEATED PHRASE IN SAN DIEGO REPORTAGE OF THE WEEK: ""Worst kept secret" - basically any story that no one else published until now, apart from this column months ago.

WORD ON THE AISLES

[Yellow Light]Now, San Diego gossip usually takes a few days to filter across the pond, so look for the real dirt next week. But until then, here are a few snippets that have zipped along the express gossip vine (Thanks to people at The Daily Now for providing a couple).

"All-Star Batgirl" mini - not a definite, but it's in the planning stages and there's been talk with possible creators.

Peter Milligan will be working on a "Namor" project.

Look for an "Amethyst" project, with John Ney Reiber and James Owen.

"52" has been such a big success that there's talk at DC about it continuing it in some form or another, to keep the momentum, possibly as a bi-weekly.

Look for a "Foolkiller" book to be announced at WizardWorld Chicago.

Was George R.R. Martin seen at San Diego talking to Dan DiDio? I hear he could be a new credit on an upcoming DC project…

And a "Shadow" project with Chuck Dixon.

The working title for a new mini-series is "Death of the New Gods." Expect that title to be rather literal.

There's an emerging policy I've been told about at DC called "Seasoned DC." The idea is to reintroduce a crop of new, young, readers to artists and creators who have been around for a long time. The idea is to promote them as hot new talent, to reintroduce them to the DCU and its readers. Basically, what Marvel did with Bruce Jones.

Also spilling out of San Diego were the contents of Raven "The Gift" Gregory's lunch after a party at a bar on Friday night, passing out on the curb in a pool of his own vomit after a "hilariously" spiked drink. Which he then rolled around in before being manhandled into a cab. Raven has lost about four hours, if anyone has seen them and would like to give them back, contact this column.

THE CHICK FROM WONDER WOMAN?

[Yellow Light]Straight from the messageboards... , Natasha Henstridge up there for Wonder Woman.

"Natasha Henstridge has the first 50 pages of script.

"I saw the first 30 pages of the script in her gym bag and 2 days before she signed and fedexed a 4 page confidentiality agreement."

Okay, who's got the hair dye? We're going to need buckets full!

OWN LEE, THE LONELY

[Green Light]New Marvel series, "The Loners." Who are they? They're the Excelsior team from "Runaways." Why are they not called "Excelsior?" Because Stan Lee owns the trademark on that.

STORM IN A COMICSHOP

[Green Light]Recently, one individual attempted to buy every issue of the current "Storm" comic book from Orbital Comics in London. He was refused, as they only sell a maximum of 2 copies per customer. Is this some speculation trend we were unaware of?

No, this was Eric Jerome Dickey, the writer of said comic, trying to get copies of his own book. Bless…

SMALLVILLE DREAMING

[Yellow Light]There are potential "Smallville" spoilers upon us. Highlight the white spaces if you wish to sully yourself.

The JLA form in the new "Smallville" season. Perry White will have a relationship with Martha Kent.

The Superboy teasings within Smallville continue, with whatever wiggles they have to make to avoid the current ownership legal suit. The comics are lining up the status quo, with "JLA" #0 showing the funeral of Jonathan Kent flashforward and the Busiek/Johns Superman revamp reflecting the movie. Convergence, they call it.

We have Clark Kent creating a cement tunnel from his room to the outside - shades of Silver Age Superboy there. And while Tom Welling, at 28, is getting on a bit for playing the role, remember, Gerard Christopher was 32 when he played the character!

With the new Scooby gang consisting of Clark, Lois, Jimmy and Chloe, could Smallville be the new Press Gang?

SAN DIEGO THIEVING.

[Green Light]Original art from George Pratt from "Wolverine." Tom Spurgeon's backpack. Gregory's dignity.

If anyone has seen these items, please contact this column.

TITANIC DAZE

[Green Light]The cover of "Titans" #40 has been shrouded in mystery...

Until this version leaked out at the LITG boards...

UPDATE: Turns out the leak was stranger than reported. Weeks before the hidden cover was released by DC, creators Geoff Johns and Tony Daniel themselves actually posted the full cover themselves here and here.

Oops!

CIVIL WARRIORS

Another dot to join on last week's Marvel "Civil War" Directors Cut spoiler expose. Matt Adler, one of the alternate version posters, is a credited writer on "Marvel Spotlight." As was one of the others, John R Thomas. Could "Marvel Spotlight" be the common link in the disinformation campaign? Rather apt really…

THE LIST

[Green Light]The Jewish Chronicle recently ran an article on comic books and graphic novels. Including "A Jew In Communist Prague," "Rabbi's Cat," "Quitter" and "Brownsville" were featured. Well researched, in depth, and without a "Ker-Pow" in the headline. In a sidebar, they recommended a few comics to readers, "Maus," appropriate, "The Plot," again you see where they're going here, "Watchmen," slight divergence but hey, "Sandman," prominent Jewish creator there and "Preacher."

Yeah. That last one will prove popular down the synagogue. Has someone been reading too much Cerebus?

Hat tip to Lee Barnett, who has kicked off his "Fast fiction project" (see past contributions from Ellis, Simone, Young, Gibbons, Dunbier and Tony Lee.

SWIPE FILE

[Green Light]Sasha Baran Cohen as Borat at ComicCon talking about "Astounding Woman."

Grant Morrison's "Mother Of All Champions" as seen in "52" and "The Great 10"…

… who can give birth to a litter of 25 super-soldiers about every three days…

RETURNING TO SUPERMAN

[Yellow Light]Lt. Marvel has been reading the Superman Returns adaptation with a pad and pen, looking at plot points that made the book but not the film - and vice versa.

Not In Movie: A whole introduction to the Superman origin and Superman in a space suit flying his ship. There's two pages of Superman flying to Krypton and giving the order to go home that looks like it was in the movie. The space suit is a silver version of Superman's costume sans the cape.

Smallville scene: Clark reads Lois's column (the words are in the captions). Somehow, Ma is sending post cards on Clark's behalf. Clark meets Ma's beau; and Ma is moving to another state! Clark has to be talked into going back to Lois.

Fortress of Solitude scene: Lex figures out where Superman's ship would've been parked. Lex reveals that he is behind the Krypton "discovery" and thus, Superman's disappearance.

Lois-Superman rooftop: Discussion of the Lane column.

Superman goes to Fortress: Superman calls for his father (Jor-El), saying he is so alone. He then sees he's been robbed.

Lois captive on the boat scenes: Lex throws dynamite into the pantry Lois and her son Jason are locked in. Lois manages to open a vent and throw the dynamite down the vent and now the boat is sinking.

Not In Book: Luthor gang returns to mansion: The great dog joke. Probably cut for space. The dogs are completely missing from the book.

Plane resuce scene: The Superman: the Movie line about the safety of flying.

Lois captive on the boat scenes: Any sign/dialogue that Jason is Superman's kid. Lex's loaded question to that flying piano to Superman talking in the kid's bedroom.

Lex's final fate: May have been cut for space. Or may have been added to the movie at the last minute.

While Bald Steve has been spilling more on the "Superman Returns" DVD at The Bendis Board.

"Apparently, those scenes I mentioned on the original thread were supposed to be held back for a double-dip-style bilking of the fanbase, but due to the fact that Superman Returns didn't have the cultural impact (seriously, that's what WB was hoping for: The next Star Wars) the suits had hoped for, they're planning on throwing in the towel and including everything that was filmed and completed with the debut DVD release. Only an official press release will comfirm of course, but that's straight form the horse's mouth as of today.

"Also, wanna know Singer's deal? Believe me, when you read this you will understand why he jumped the X-ship when he did. Ironic that Rantner ended up kicking his ass:

"1. 10-12 million dollars just to direct.

"2. 10% of the worldwide box office gross.

"3. The lion's share of the merch (Lucas-style) and a fat slice of the DVD sales. According to my boy, this deal will drop close to 50 million fucking dollars in Singer's bank account when it's all said and done. Dude is all set.

"It is not slated to be released in 3D at this time."

LINKS OF THE RICH AND FAMOUS

[Green Light]Batman The Musical

The Enemy Within

Rachel Blake at Nerdprom.

Boy Layton on ending Iron Man.

San Diego Mail for Kristen Bell.

David Arquette… Tripping.

Natalie Portman Not A Mighty Duck.

CHASING LOIS

[Green Light]Slice-Of-Superman

SMALL PRINT

Discuss this column at the Lying In The Gutters Forum.

Contact me on richjohnston@gmail.com or on AOL Instant Messenger as TwistRich.

You can also write to me at 8 Robin Hood Lane, Kingston Vale, London SW15 3PU ENGLAND

Or call me/text me on 0780 1350982 from the UK or 01144780 1350982 from the US.

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