DC Comics Spotlight Articles for Product Shipping March, 2004

Tue, December 16th, 2003 at 12:00am PST

Comic Books
Jonah Weiland, Executive Producer/Publisher

Official Press Release

KINETIC

The DC FOCUS line - where real life and super-powers intesect with raw, unexpected results - continues in March with the hard-hitting KINETIC, written by Kelley Puckett (BATGIRL) with evocative art by Warren Pleece (DEADENDERS).

KINETIC's central character is Tom Morell, a sickly, disabled, ultra-loser facing the daily hell of high school. Worse yet, his sole means of emotional support is his loving but smothering mother who fears he'll drop dead at any moment. And the worst part is, she's right.

Tom's only escape is the super-heroic exploits of Kinetic, his favorite comic-book hero. But unbeknownst to Tom, he's got some powers of his own, and they're going to change his life - assuming they manifest themselves before Tom reaches the end of his rope and decides that life isn't worth living!

And next month, watch for the debuts of TOUCH and FRACTION, each of which were previewed with KINETIC in February's HARD TIME #1!

This project is supported with house ads and a minisite at www.dccomics.com.

KINETIC is an ongoing series edited by Matt Idelson. The 32-page issue #1 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 24 with a cover price of $2.50 U.S.

X marks the spot!


JLA #94: "THE 10TH CIRCLE"

The legendary creative team that produced some of history's most fondly remembered comics - Uncanny X-Men's John Byrne and Chris Claremont - reunites for the 6-part saga "The 10th Circle," kicking off in JLA #94 and shipping biweekly beginning in March!

In "The 10th Circle," written by Byrne & Claremont with art and covers by Byrne & Jerry Ordway (Fantastic Four), the JLA investigates a rash of child disappearances…but soon begin to disappear themselves! Before long, Superman is brainwashed and in the hands of a fanatic cult that worships an ancient, vampiric evil. With things looking dire, the JLA may just have to call on the aid of a mysterious new team that has been shadowing their every move…but are they a force for good, or evil?

This project is supported with a full-color promo poster, trade and house ads, and a minisite at www.dccomics.com.

JLA is an ongoing series edited by Mike Carlin. The 32-page issue #94 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 10 with a cover price of $2.25 U.S. The 32-page issue #95 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 31 with a cover price of $2.25 U.S.

SUPERMAN/BATMAN #8

A shocking 6-part story written by Jeph Loeb and featuring the amazing art of Michael Turner (Fathom) begins here!

The action kicks off with SUPERMAN/BATMAN #8, in a story that picks up after the cataclysmic events of issue #6 and introduces an important new character in the DC Universe. Batman has discovered something strange and mysterious on the bottom of Gotham Bay…something that appears to be a young girl. Little does he know that she'll eventually capture the attention of Superman, Wonder Woman and even Darkseid and his Female Furies!

Superman wants to care for her. Wonder Woman wants to protect her. And Darkseid wants to make her his new weapon. But who is she? And whose side will she end up on?

Don't miss this action-packed story brimming with the visual excitement that only Michael Turner and Aspen Studios can deliver!

This project is supported with an 8-page preview in Wizard #??, house ads, and a minisite at www.dccomics.com

SUPERMAN/BATMAN is an ongoing series edited by Eddie Berganza. The 32-page issue #8 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 24 with a cover price of $2.95 U.S.

RELOAD/MEK TRADE PAPERBACK

Two tales from master storyteller Warren Ellis in one great volume: an espionage thriller that pushes action to its ultimate limits and a tale of revenge set in a not-too-distant future in which robotic enhancements have become the latest rage! The RELOAD/MEK trade paperback is wholly unique, printed in a flipbook format with each story featuring a separate cover.

Paul Gulacy (CATWOMAN) & Jimmy Palmiotti (CATWOMAN, TWO-STEP) provide art for RELOAD, the story of Secret Service Agent Chris Royal. He thought the worst part of his day was going to be resisting the urge to smoke a cigarette, but before lunch, the President of the United States will be dead and Washington will be under siege…by a single woman! As thefourthrail.com says "RELOAD is important. You should read it."

On the flip-side, Ellis is joined by artists Steve Rolston (Queen and Country, Pounded) & Al Gordon (TOM STRONG) for MEK, a tale of cultural decay and murder. Sarissa Leon, one of the progenitors of mek culture, has returned home to find her city overrun with technological marvels - her "cyborg" children. But her return isn't for nostalgia - she's in town to investigate the murder of her former lover RJ Coin…an investigation that will lead her down a road she could never have predicted!

This project is supported with house ads.

o 144-page WildStorm trade paperback


o Suggested for mature readers


o In stores March 10


o $14.95 U.S

THE AUTHORITY: HARSH REALITIES TRADE PAPERBACK

The Authority was formed to fight the fights that no one else could. To set wrongs to right. To build a finer world.

Now, further exploits of this controversial team are collected in THE AUTHORITY: HARSH REALITIES, a 144-page Eye of the Stormtrade paperback featuring the explosive first story arc of the new ongoing series (presented in issues #1-4) as well as the stand-alone issues #0 and 5!

In this explosive collection, writer Robbie Morrison and artists Dwayne Turner, Tan Eng Huat, Sal Regla, and Sandra Hope put our heroes through some of their most fiendish adventures yet. From a rogue dimension bent on destroying the planet as part of an elaborate gamble, to an interdimensional corporation that has been strip-mining other realities, the Authority have their hands full like never before!

This project is supported with house ads.

o 144-page WildStorm Eye of the Storm trade paperback


o Suggested for mature readers


o In stores March 24


o $14.95 U.S

Y: THE LAST MAN - ONE SMALL STEP TRADE PAPERBACK

The adventures of Yorick Brown continue in Y: THE LAST MAN: ONE SMALL STEP, this third trade paperback collecting issues #11-17 of the critically acclaimed series written by Brian K. Vaughan with art by Pia Guerra, Paul Chadwick & Jos Marzn Jr. and a painted cover by J.G. Jones.

A Russian Soyuz capsule is coming down from the International Space Station carrying three passengers: one woman and two men. Could it be that Yorick won't be the only man on Earth for much longer? Even if the astronauts survive reentry, Yorick's group still must keep them safe from the mysterious male-killing plague - and the Israeli commandos hunting Yorick might make that a lot more difficult.

This project is supported with house ads.

o 168-page VERTIGO trade paperback


o Suggested for mature readers


o In stores March 17


o $12.95 U.S

Batgirl vs. Batman!


BATGIRL #50

For months Batgirl has worked with Batman despite growing feelings of resentment. In March's extra-sized BATGIRL #50, written by Dylan Horrocks with art by Rick Leonardi & Jesse Delperdang and a stunning cover by James Jean, that resentment finally explodes!

Fueled by the emotion-charging drug Soul, Batgirl goes on a rampage that brings her toe-to-toe with her mentor, exploding in a fury of fists and feet. This is it: the knock-down, drag-out fight you've been waiting to see! But who will emerge victorious, and what ramifications will it all have on Batgirl's future as a crimefighter?

This project is supported with house ads.

BATGIRL is an ongoing series edited by Michael Wright. The 40-page issue #50 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 24 with a cover price of $2.95 U.S.

BATMAN IN THE FORTIES TRADE PAPERBACK

Get ready for the latest collection celebrating Caped Crusader's early, formative adventures: BATMAN IN THE FORTIES! Featuring Batman stories from BATMAN #7, 15, 20, 31, 37, 47, 48, 49, DETECTIVE COMICS #27, 33, 38, 49, 80, REAL FACT COMICS #5, STAR-SPANGLED COMICS #70, and WORLD'S FINEST COMICS #30, this volume - which features work by celebrated talents including Bob Kane, Bill Finger, Jack Schiff, Jerry Robinson, George Roussos, Dick Sprang, Jack Burnley, Charles Paris, Winslow Mortimer and others - collects Batman's first appearance, as well as the debut of Robin and the first telling of the Dark Knight's origin.

Batman's famed Rogues' Gallery is also on hand, with stories featuring the Joker, Two-Face, Catwoman and the Mad Hatter. Plus, this volume features an introduction by noted comics historian Bill Schelly.

This project is supported with house ads.

o 192-page trade paperback


o In stores March 3


o $19.95 U.S

BATMAN/POISON IVY: CAST SHADOWS

The Dark Knight's most alluring foe becomes the prime suspect in a murder investigation in BATMAN/POISON IVY: CAST SHADOWS, a 64-page Prestige Format Special written by Ann Nocenti (DAREDEVIL) with haunting painted art and a cover by John Van Fleet (BATMAN: THE CHALICE).

A new skyscraper in Gotham City casts a large shadow over Arkham Asylum, where Poison Ivy is being held. But the sudden lack of sunlight is driving her mad, since she can no longer grow the plants that are an important part of her therapy. And when a series of attempted murders of the building's developers and financial elite takes place, Batman immediately thinks Ivy is involved. But he's running out of time…and he's been infected with the same toxin as the developers! Is Ivy to blame - and will she help him?

This project is supported with house ads.

BATMAN/POISON IVY: CAST SHADOWS is a 64-page Prestige Format Special edited by Joey Cavalieri. It is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 31 with a cover price of $6.95 U.S.

DOOM PATROL ARCHIVES VOL. 2 HARDCOVER

The World's Strangest Heroes are back!

DOOM PATROL ARCHIVES Vol. 2, written by Arnold Drake with art by Bruno Premiani and Bob Brown and a new cover by Brian Bolland, collects the classic DOOM PATROL #90-97, originally published in 1964-1965. Experience what made this title legendary and thrill to the adventures of Robotman, Elasti-Girl, Negative Man and "The Chief!"

This hardcover Archive Edition includes classic confrontations with The Brotherhood of Evil, the Animal-Vegetable-Mineral Man, Dr. Tyme, Mento, General Immortus and more, plus an introduction by comics legend Roy Thomas!

o 240-page hardcover


o In stores March 31


o $49.95 U.S

FORMERLY KNOWN AS THE JUSTICE LEAGUE TRADE PAPERBACK

Unscrupulous businessman Maxwell Lord never misses the chance to cash in on a scheme, no matter how harebrained. And his latest plan is his wackiest yet: reuniting the classic 1980s Justice League!

FORMERLY KNOWN AS THE JUSTICE LEAGUE is a 144-page trade paperback collecting the best-selling, off-beat 6-issue miniseries by the JUSTICE LEAGUE creative team of Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis, Kevin Maguire and Joe Rubinstein!

Blue Beetle, Booster Gold, Fire, Elongated Man, Captain Atom and Mary Marvel make up the team that Maxwell Lord has set up in a suburban strip mall…but trouble soon arises, both from angry locals as well as the deadly Roulette! And don't forget (how could we?) galactic conqueror (and interstellar headcase) Manga Khan!

This project is supported with house ads.

o 144-page trade paperback


o In stores March 3


o $12.95 U.S

GREEN ARROW: STRAIGHT SHOOTER TRADE PAPERBACK

Oliver Queen travels down a road of deception, danger, and tragedy in GREEN ARROW: STRAIGHT SHOOTER, a 144-page trade paperback collecting award-winning writer Judd Winick's first story arc from issues #26-31, featuring art by Phil Hester & Ande Parks and a painted cover by Matt Wagner!

Star City is getting a facelift, but gentrification has its costs. Green Arrow has always been a man of the people, but now he has to prove it by combating corporate corruption…and little does he know that he'll have to prove it against a 3-ton ogre! Plus, Black Lightning pays a visit to Star City…but does he come as a friend or foe?

This project is supported with house ads.

o 144-page trade paperback


o In stores March 24


o $12.95 U.S

JSA: THE LIBERTY FILES TRADE PAPERBACK

Get ready for JSA: THE LIBERTY FILES, a 264-page ELSEWORLDS trade paperback collecting the 2-issue JSA: THE LIBERTY FILES miniseries as well as the 2-issue follow-up, JSA: THE UNHOLY THREE, written by Dan Jolley & Tony Harris with art and cover by Harris & Ray Snyder!

In JSA: THE LIBERTY FILES, the "Owl," "Clock," "Bat" and a host of other very familiar costumed characters battle for the safety of the world. The story continues in THE UNHOLY THREE, set eight years later, as the Bat, the Clock, and Clark Kent take on two ex-KGB operatives code-named Parasite and Steelwolf responsible for killing American covert agents in Berlin. Can the Unholy Three stop them before they find the Trigger, a mystery device which could end all life on Earth?

This project is supported with house ads.

o 264-page ELSEWORLDS trade paperback


o In stores March 24


o $19.95 U.S

SHAZAM! ARCHIVES VOL. 4 HARDCOVER

All it takes is a single magic word…

Get ready for SHAZAM! ARCHIVES VOL. 4, a stunning new hardcover archive collecting the classic CAPTAIN MARVEL ADVENTURES #4 and #5, plus stories from MASTER COMICS #21 and #22, WHIZ #25 and AMERICA'S GREATEST COMICS #2, featuring the work of William Woolfolk, Mac Raboy, C.C. Beck, and more!

In the early 1940s, the success of Fawcett's Captain Marvel began to rival that of Superman - The World's Mightiest Mortal had become a super-hero to reckon with. And with that popularity came deeper mythology and new characters such as Captain Marvel, Jr., and the Lieutenants Marvel, both of whom appear in this volume, along with a guest appearance by Bulletman.

THE SHAZAM! ARCHIVES VOL. 4 follows this development of the legend of Captain Marvel and features page after page of classic art. Also included in this volume is an insightful introduction by Fawcett Comics authority P.C. Hammerlinck.

o 196-page hardcover


o In stores March 3


o $49.95 U.S

TEEN TITANS: A KID'S GAME TRADE PAPERBACK

Witness the dawn of a new era in TEEN TITANS: A KID'S GAME, a 192-page trade paperback collecting the best-selling TEEN TITANS #1-7, written by the fan-favorite Geoff Johns with art by Mike McKone and Marlo Alquiza, additional art by Tom Grummett, Nelson DeCastro and Kevin Conrad, and a cover by Michael Turner!

Witness the gathering of a new team of Teen Titans and their initial battle against an old, familiar foe: Deathstroke! The reasons behind his actions prove shocking to the team, and before the teen heroes can even get their feet on the ground, they must reencounter the cult of Brother Blood. Plus, an introduction by Johns and Profile Pages from TEEN TITANS/OUTSIDERS SECRET FILES #1!

This project is supported with house ads.

o 192-page trade paperback


o In stores March 31


o $9.95 U.S

A GREGORY TREASURY VOL. 1 TRADE PAPERBACK

Get ready for an all-new manga-sized volume collecting the first two volumes of creator Marc Hempel's classic series!

A GREGORY TREASURY VOL. 1 reintroduces us to Gregory, a lovable, institutionalized boy in a straitjacket who speaks only in vowels. Sharing his small cell is a mortality-challenged rat named Herman Vermin and a cheese-fixated mouse named Wendell. Together, they manage to generate more entertainment than a roomful of stand-up comics (at a fraction of the cost)! Hempel (artist of THE SANDMAN: THE KINDLY ONES) leaves no foible undrawn in this masterful study of human (and rodent) character.

o 176-page black-and-white trade paperback


o Suggested for mature readers


o Measuring 5" x 7 3/8"


o In stores March 31


o $9.95 U.S

ELFQUEST: THE GRAND QUEST VOL. 2 TRADE PAPERBACK

DC's re-presentation of classic Elfquest material continues with ELFQUEST: THE GRAND QUEST VOL. 2, a new digest-sized, black-and-white trade paperback collecting ElfQuest #5-9, written by Wendy and Richard Pini with art and a new cover by Wendy Pini.

In this installment of the classic ElfQuest saga, Cutter's tribe has happily melded with the Sun Village, but the elf chieftain still has a ways to go with Leetah, the beautiful healer. Cutter also decides the only way the elves will survive the encroachment of humans is for all the scattered elf tribes to be reunited. With Skywise, Cutter sets out on his journey, which includes a visit to the Forbidden Grove, an eerie locale that hides danger!

o 224-page black-and-white trade paperback


o Measures 5" x 7 3/8"


o In stores March 17


o $9.95 U.S

CARTOON CARTOONS DIGEST-SIZED TRADE PAPERBACKS

The stars of the Cartoon Network can all be found in this fourth set of trade paperbacks in DC Comics' new line of digest-sized collections! CARTOON CARTOONS VOL. 1: NAME THAT TOON! And CARTOON CARTOONS VOL. 2: THE GANG'S ALL HERE! each collect 110 pages of stories from CARTOON CARTOONS, DEXTER'S LABORATORY and CARTOON NETWORK STARRING, featuring the glories of Dexter's Laboratory, Johnny Bravo, Cow & Chicken, Courage the Cowardly Dog, Ed, Edd n Eddy, and I.M. Weasel! As Johnny Bravo would say, "Man, that's pretty!"

These can't-miss volumes feature the work of a barrel of great creators, including Genndy Tartakovsky, Craig McCracken, Danny Antonucci, Robbie Busch, Jesse McCann, Dan Slott, Mo Willems, Angus Bungay, John Delaney, Vincent Deporter, Tim Harkins, Mike Kazaleh, Neal Sternecky, Sholly Fisch, Chuck Kim, John Rozum, Bill Alger, Scott McRae, Bill Wray, and more!

o 112-page trade paperbacks


o Measures 5 1/8" x 7 9/16"


o In stores March 10


o $6.95 U.S. each

PLANETARY: CROSSING WORLDS TRADE PAPERBACK

Three stunning stories…three fantastic artists…one brilliant writer. Three PLANETARY crossovers - each written by Entertainment Weekly's "It writer" Warren Ellis - are presented together in PLANETARY: CROSSING WORLDS! This 160-page volume, sporting a new cover by John Cassaday, brings together the following tales:

o PLANETARY/THE AUTHORITY, featuring art by Phil Jimenez (WONDER WOMAN, New X-Men) and Andy Lanning, pits the world's most visible team against the world's most covert team.

o PLANETARY/JLA, featuring art by Jerry Ordway (TOM STRONG), takes place on a world very much like our own, but also very different. On this world, Planetary is not who we know them to be…and neither is the JLA. Or are they?

o PLANETARY/BATMAN, featuring art by Cassaday (PLANETARY), brings the members of Planetary to Gotham City on a mission to track down a serial killer. And that's where they run into a hero who shouldn't exist on this world: Batman!

Complete your PLANETARY collection with this perfect companion volume!

This project is supported with trade and house ads.

o 160-page WildStorm trade paperback


o In stores March 17


o $14.95 U.S

THE MAXX BOOK TWO TRADE PAPERBACK

Sam Kieth's critically-acclaimed psychological exploration of a bizarre hero continues in THE MAXX BOOK TWO, a 160-page trade paperback collecting issues #7-13 of the groundbreaking series originally published by Image Comics plus a short story from Darker Image #1.

With a painted cover, stunning imagery and plot by Kieth, plus additional dialogue by collaborator William Messner-Loebs, THE MAXX mixes reality with whimsy to tell the continuing saga of the Maxx and his soulmate/confidante, Julie. THE MAXX BOOK TWO presents beautiful rendering coupled with eclectic stories of the human spirit forced to deal with extraordinary events - as only Sam Kieth could deliver!

This project is supported with house ads.

o 160-page WildStorm trade paperback


o Suggested for mature readers


o In stores March 31


o $17.95 U.S

THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS ACTION FIGURES

Frank Miller's seminal work on the gritty, ground-breaking DARK KNIGHT RETURNS changed the landscape of comics forever and inspired a new generation of comics creators. Now, DC Direct celebrates that immortal series with a quartet of figures beautifully sculpted by Tim Bruckner that capture the look and feel of Miller's Batman, Superman, The Joker, and Robin!

o THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: BATMAN ACTION FIGURE measures approximately 7 3/8" tall, features multiple points of articulation and comes with a Batarang with rope. This figure also includes a sidewalk base and comes packaged in a 4-color window box.

o THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: ROBIN ACTION FIGURE. which portrays Carrie Kelly as the Dark Knight's apprentice, measures approximately 4 7/8" tall, features multiple points of articulation and comes with a slingshot and rope. This figure also includes a sidewalk base with street lamp featuring a glow-in-the-dark street lamp and comes packaged in a 4-color window box.

o THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: THE JOKER ACTION FIGURE measures approximately 6 5/8" tall, features multiple points of articulation and comes with a two pistols and a Joker doll. This figure also includes a sidewalk base and comes packaged in a 4-color window box.

o THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: SUPERMAN ACTION FIGURE measures approximately 7 3/8" tall, features multiple points of articulation and comes with alternate hands holding a crushed Bat-armor helmet and a Kryptonite arrow. This figure also includes a sidewalk base and comes packaged in a 4-color window box.

This project is supported with trade and house ads and a full-color promo poster.

The DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: BATMAN ACTION FIGURE, DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: SUPERMAN ACTION FIGURE, DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: ROBIN ACTION FIGURE, and DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: THE JOKER ACTION FIGURE are advance-solicited, sold separately and arrive in comic-book stores July 21, 2004. Please consult your retailer for pricing information. Retailers please note: The DARK KNIGHT RETURNS: BATMAN, ROBIN, THE JOKER and SUPERMAN ACTION FIGURES are intended for individual sale to consumers, but are sold to retailers in Inner and Master Case assortment as well as singles. Consult your retailer Order Form for packaging details. This product is being offered simultaneously beyond the comic-book specialty market.

TEEN TITANS #9

Raven's back…but what are her motives?

The mysterious Titan's return sparks a series of changes for the young heroes in TEEN TITANS #9 - written by Geoff Johns with art by Tom Grummett & Marlo Alquiza and a cover by Mike McKone & Alquiza - the first installment in the 5-part "Raven Rising" story arc!

As the Titans settle in for another weekend together, the first task on their agenda is teaching Bart - the new Kid Flash - to drive. But a fun, relaxing adventure quickly becomes a nightmare as Raven returns with Brother Blood in tow! Don't miss the start of what's sure to be the next classic TEEN TITANS story!

TEEN TITANS is an ongoing series edited by Eddie Berganza. The 32-page issue #9 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 17 with a cover price of $2.50 U.S.

BATMAN #625

Batman's "Broken City" is about to go up in flames, as the creative team of 100 BULLETS brings the acclaimed 6-part saga to a breathtaking conclusion!

In BATMAN #625, written by Brian Azzarello with art by Eduardo Risso and a cover by Dave Johnson, a physically and mentally spent Dark Knight finally catches up with criminal mastermind Angel Lupo. But when Batman discovers the dark secret behind the murder of a young boy's parents, his world is turned upside-down…and only The Joker can put things right!

Don't miss the thrilling end of the story arc everyone's talking about!

BATMAN is an ongoing series coedited by Bob Schreck and Will Dennis. The 32-page issue #625 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 31 with a cover price of $2.25 U.S.

THE FLASH #208

Some familiar friends and foes speed back into the life of the Fastest Man Alive in THE FLASH #208, a self-contained issue written by Geoff Johns with stunning art by Howard Porter & Livesay and a cover by Aspen Studios' Michael Turner!

As Wally West tours the new Flash Museum, the Flash "family" - including the new Kid Flash and old standby Jay Garrick - forces themselves back into his life. Will Wally struggle with his rediscovered super-hero identity? And while Wally revisits his past and present life, Ashley Zolomon pays a visit to her husband, a man who played a big part in changing Wally's life: Zoom!

THE FLASH is an ongoing series edited by Joey Cavalieri. The 32-page issue #208 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 31 with a cover price of $2.25 U.S.

IT'S A BIRD…HARDCOVER

Steve has just been given the opportunity every comic-book writer dreams of: the chance to write Superman. Only it's an assignment he couldn't want less. To Steve, everything about Superman is ridiculous. To write about the Man of Steel, Steve must believe he could exist…but he can't.

Steve's story is the focus of IT'S A BIRD…, a semi-autobiographical original VERTIGO hardcover graphic novel written by former SUPERMAN writer Steven T. Seagle with exquisitely painted art by Teddy Kristiansen (SUPERMAN: METROPOLIS, HOUSE OF SECRETS). IT'S A BIRD… isn't about how Metropolis's defender would function in the real world, but how he does function in the real world. Our world, where he's just a fictional character.

How does anyone relate to a Man of Steel - much less Steve, with his own fear of death and the specter of a family history of a terrible illness hanging over him? Steve tears through every cultural and symbolic component of Superman's importance, leading to a series of stories told in a variety of styles that form one provocative question: How does the most important heroic icon of the 21st century affect our lives?

A Superman story that doesn't feature Superman at all, IT'S A BIRD… is perhaps the most realistic Superman story DC Comics has ever published - a story about the character's profound power as a fictional ideal.

This project is supported with an 8-page preview in VERTIGO HORIZON.

IT'S A BIRD… is a 136-page VERTIGO original hardcover graphic novel edited by Karen Berger and is suggested for mature readers. It is advance-solicited and arrives in comic-book stores April 14 with a cover price of $24.95 U.S.

COUP D'TAT: AFTERWORD

As the dust settles, catch up on the aftershocks of February's COUP D'TAT with COUP D'TAT: AFTERWORD, a 32-page Special featuring write-ups and art by top talent, including Mike Carey, Ed Brubaker, Whilce Portacio, Sean Phillips, Carlos D'Anda, and more! The COUP D'TAT: AFTERWORD features a pair of 6-page previews of red-hot upcoming WildStorm projects: WETWORKS and SLEEPER SEASON TWO, plus various character bios and pin-ups.

WETWORKS, a new monthly series written by Carey (LUCIFER) with stunning art by series creator Portacio (STORMWATCH: TEAM ACHILLES), expands the lore of the popular 1990s series. The holes left in the Bleed following COUP D'TAT now serve as gateways to other realities. Dane, team leader of the original Wetworks, is reactivated to investigate…and his chilling discovery could represent the greatest threat mankind has ever known!

SLEEPER SEASON TWO, by Brubaker and Phillips, picks up the story of Holden Carver. In the wake of COUP D'TAT, the American intelligence service is desperate to find him. They have one lone ace-in-the-hole agent who could possibly bring him in…but is it worth the cost?

This project is supported with house ads.

COUP D'TAT AFTERWORD is a 32-page special edited by Scott Dunbier, Ben Abernathy and Alex Sinclair and is suggested for mature readers. It arrives in comic-book stores March 10 with a cover price of $2.95 U.S.

The defender of the swamp returns…


SWAMP THING

The seminal SWAMP THING was a landmark series - one that helped pave the way for the VERTIGO imprint and fostered a new style of comic-book storytelling.

Now, that legendary character is poised to return to the VERTIGO fold in a new ongoing series written by Andy Diggle (THE LOSERS) with breathtaking art by Enriqu Breccia (BATMAN: GOTHAM KNIGHTS). This all-new ongoing series combines all the gothic horror and thought-provoking stories long associated with Swamp Thing with something cool for both new and old fans of this classic DC character.

The Swamp Thing long ago made peace with his strange destiny. Formerly Alec Holland, a human scientist who died by fire, he was reborn as a "plant Elemental" - guardian and champion of the Green - ultimately becoming one with the planet Earth itself.

But suddenly, the time for peaceful co-existence has come to an end. Now stripped of Alec Holland's human conscience, the Swamp Thing seeks to restore balance to the natural world - by destroying his own daughter, Tef - herself a powerful Elemental - and his loving wife Abby. And HELLBLAZER'S John Constantine knows that when beings with this much power square off, humanity always ends up getting caught in the crossfire.

After the 6-part opening storyline, "Bad Seed," the series will be written by Will Pfeifer (H-E-R-O, AQUAMAN), who has major tricks up his sleeve.

This project is supported with a full-color promo poster, a preview in VERTIGO HORIZON, house ads, and a minisite at www.vertigocomics.com.

SWAMP THING is an ongoing VERTIGO series edited by Will Dennis and is suggested for mature readers. The 32-page issue #1 is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on March 3 with a cover price of $2.95 U.S.

HELLBLAZER: SON OF MAN TRADE PAPERBACK

After setting the comic industry on its ear with the compelling and bizarre adventures of Jesse Custer in PREACHER, acclaimed writer Garth Ennis turned his attention to another roguish VERTIGO character: John Constantine.

Now, Ennis's final Constantine adventure is presented in HELLBLAZER: SON OF MAN, a 128-page VERTIGO trade paperback collecting HELLBLAZER #129-133, illustrated by Ennis's PRIDE & JOY collaborator, John Higgins, with a cover by Glenn Fabry (PREACHER covers).

John Constantine's pulled a lot of shady stunts over the years, but perhaps none as bad as the time he "resurrected" organized crime boss Harry Cooper's 5-year-old son, Ronnie. Since his magic couldn't actually bring someone back from the dead, Constantine brought "something else" into Ronnie's lifeless body. Now, 15 years later, he's got to deal with the ungodly consequences of his actions as the grown-up Ronnie prepares to bring an unprecedented evil into the world.

This project is supported with house ads.

o 128-page VERTIGO trade paperback


o In stores March 10


o $12.95 U.S

BATMAN JAPANESE IMPORT COLLECTOR ACTION FIGURES

New BATMAN COLLECTOR ACTION FIGURES, never before available in the U.S., are on the horizon! Manufactured by Japanese toy company Yamato, these action figures were licensed by DC Comics for distribution in Japan only in 2003. Now, for the first time, DC Direct brings you these finely detailed, multi-accessoried collector action figures of Batman, Robin, Harley Quinn and The Joker!

Each figure is limited to only 5,000 pieces for the U.S. and Canada. Additionally, each figure comes in its authentic Japanese packaging, with character-specific accessories and a randomly inserted reproduction card featuring famous BATMAN and DETECTIVE COMICS covers. Because these figures are for collectors, each is designed with limited articulation for maximum aesthetic quality. Only DC Direct is authorized to make these available to the U.S. and Canadian markets under special arrangement. Don't miss out on this opportunity to own a distinct Japanese vision of the Dark Knight!

The BATMAN JAPANESE IMPORT COLLECTOR ACTION FIGURE: BATMAN, BATMAN JAPANESE IMPORT COLLECTOR ACTION FIGURE: THE JOKER, BATMAN JAPANESE IMPORT COLLECTOR ACTION FIGURE: ROBIN, and BATMAN JAPANESE IMPORT COLLECTOR ACTION FIGURE: HARLEY QUINN are retro-solicited, sold separately and arrive in comic-book stores February 25, 2004. Please consult your retailer for pricing information. Note to retailers: The BATMAN JAPANESE IMPORT COLLECTOR ACTION FIGURES are intended for individual sale to consumers, but please be advised that these are sold in Master Cases of eight only. Each Master Case is evenly packed, and contains two Batman figures, two Robin figures, two Harley Quinn figures and two Joker figures. This product is only available for sale in the United States and Canada. Each figure is limited to a 5,000-piece run for the U.S. and Canada. If orders exceed inventory, orders will be allocated.

 
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