As the rollout of DC Comics linewide September relaunch for its core DC Universe comics ramps up for a second week of announcements, the spotlight is shining on the Batman comics line. Traditionally the biggest and best selling branch of the DC Universe, the watchword's for the Dark Knight's adventures seem to be "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" as a number of new series feature creators well known to current Bat readers.
First up, DC's official blog The Source this morning confirmed that the longest-running titles in the company's canon would indeed be starting over with new #1s as "Detective Comics" #1 will start an adventure by writer/artist Tony Daniel featuring a new villain called the Gotham Ripper. On the other side of the legacy title divide, "Batman" #1 will serve as the new home of former "Detective" writer Scott Snyder, joined now by longtime McFarlane artist Greg Capullo. The post confirms that moving forward, Wayne will be the only Batman behind the cowl in the new DCU.
This news comes on the heels of a recent Tweet release of an incoming "Detective Comics" cover by current Snyder collaborator Jock, whose continuation on the line seems unlikely.
Meanwhile, IGN has the scoop that both "Batman & Robin" and "Batman: The Dark Knight" will see their own #1 debuts, however the current regular creative teams for the titles -- the team of Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason on the former and writer/artist David Finch on the latter -- will remain in place.
In that story, Batman editor Mike Marts confirmed that Damian Wayne will continue as Robin, and that Grant Morrison will continue to play a role in shaping the Batman line. However whether that role will include a "Batman Inc." title remains unknown -- especially with the word of Wayne's full time return to Gotham.
Finally, on the blogging and message board front, images from several new DC #1s have leaked online, and Comics Should Be Good has all the word on several new series including "Catwoman," "Nightwing" and "Swamp Thing" #1.
UPDATED: DC has released cover art and creative team info for "Batwoman," "Birds of Prey," "Batgirl" and more.
The Birds of Prey are Gotham City’s covert ops team, taking down the villains other heroes can’t touch. Mystery novelist ands comics writer Duane Swierczynski teams up with Jesus Saiz for BIRDS OF PREY #1, the first issue of the hard-hitting new series.
Meet Catwoman. She’s addicted to the night. Addicted to shiny objects. Addicted to Batman. Most of all, Catwoman is addicted to danger. She can’t help herself, and the truth is – she doesn’t want to. She’s good at being bad, and very bad at being good. Find out more about what makes Catwoman tick in CATWOMAN #1, written by Judd Winick and illustrated by Guillem March.
Batgirl’s going to have to face the city’s most horrifying new villains as well as dark secrets from her past in BATGIRL #1, the stunning debut issue from fan-favorite writer Gail Simone and artists Ardian Syaf and Vicente Cifuentes.
The highly-anticipated new series from the multiple award-winning creative team of J.H. Williams III, Haden Blackman and Amy Reeder begins in BATWOMAN #1.
UPDATED: As a final announcement, DC has released the following info on a new "Nightwing" series by Kyle Higgins and Eddy Barrows:
"After a tenure as the Batman of Gotham, Dick Grayson resumes his mantle as Nightwing! As Dick embraces his identity, Haley’s Circus, the big top where he once performed with his family, returns to Gotham - bringing with it a history of murder, mystery and superhuman evil. Nightwing must confront friends and enemies from his past as he searches for the source of an even greater evil."
As a capper to the day, three more DC series have hit the big time. First up, IGN has word on "Red Hood & The Outlaws" by by Scott Lobdell and Kenneth Rocafort featuring the team of Red Hood, Arsenal and Starfire as well as "Batwing" by by Judd Winick and Ben Oliver featuring the new Batman of Africa from "Batman, Incorporated."
And speaking of "Batman Inc.," The Source made a point to note that while the best-selling Grant Morrison title would not be one of the books launching this September, the writer did share this about the title's future, "'Batman, Incorporated' will continue through to Issue #10 and August’s shocking season finale that changes the Batman status quo yet again. The series will take a brief hiatus while I work on a major new project to be announced shortly. 'Batman, Incorporated' returns next year with me, Chris Burnham and Batman: Leviathan, the epic 12 part conclusion to my 6 year Batman saga. Don’t miss it!”
Stay tuned to CBR News this week for more on the DCU relaunch.