The roll that DC Comics has been on all year is something that they will look to continue as they begin 2019. To help get their 2019 off to a strong start we are going to see the beginning of their Wonder Comics line with Young Justice and Naomi releasing in January. Along with that there looks to be some big events taking place in the two big DC Comics events, Heroes In Crisis and Doomsday Clock, to start the new year. Let’s check out all the big things we learned from DC Comics January 2019 solicitations.
YOUNG JUSTICE RISES
After revealing that Young Justice will be returning under the Wonder Comics publishing line DC Comics isn’t not having us wait long for the series. While team comics have never been Brian Bendis’ strength as a writer Young Justice could be a different story. The reason I say that is because of the great job Bendis did writing Ultimate Spider-Man. As that series progressed Bendis was able to show how well he could write several young heroes as Ultimate Peter Parker and Miles Morales teamed with a wide array of heroes in that series.
Adding to the interest level for Young Justice is to see how much of the post-Flashpoint continuity Bendis will use. Tim Drake’s Robin seemed guaranteed to stick to his post-Flashpoint continuity given how James Tynion spent a lot of his Detective Comics run to fix Tim’s character. The same can’t be said for Superboy, Wonder Girl and Impulse, who have not been seen since Rebirth started. It would not be surprising if all the Young Justice heroes except Tim Drake got a soft-reboot by Bendis since so much of the New 52 versions of these characters was horrible.
BRIAN BENDIS BRINGS NAOMI TO DC UNIVERSE
Naomi is a brand new character that Brian Bendis is introducing to the DC Universe. Given Bendis’ background in introducing new characters Naomi could turn into the DCU’s version of Miles Morales and Jessica Jones. It would not be surprising to see since Bendis excels at writing characters that have a blank slate. That is exactly who Naomi is. If Naomi is as successful as past work by Bendis then DC Comics will have a brand new character that can break through the glass ceiling.
BLACK LIGHTNING LEADS THE OTHER HISTORY OF DCU
Black Lightning is a character that DC Comics is investing a lot into. Along with Black Lightning’s TV show we are seeing the character get an elevated status in the DC Universe. First it was having him become the leader of the new Outsiders that Batman has assembled. Now Black Lightning will be the first one to be spotlighted in the brand new mini-series “The Other History Of The DC Universe.” Each issue of this mini-series seems to focus on different DC Comics characters that have not been seen a lot post-Flashpoint.
The announced characters along with Black Lightning are Karen and Mal Duncan, Tatsu Yamashiro and Renee Montoya. While I applaud DC Comics dedicating a mini-series to lesser known or used characters it is odd that they are pricing The Other History of the DC Universe at $7.99. Given how many great comics DC is already releasing a single comic priced at $7.99 is a tough one to add to a pull list.
AQUAMAN NO LONGER KING OF THE SEA
Kelly Sue DeConnick looks to be making a strong mark at the beginning of her Aquaman run. Though the first issue hasn’t been released DeConnick seems to be taking Aquaman out of the typical ocean setting. What this exactly means for Aquaman as he sets out on a journey to find a mysterious woman from his visions is anyone’s guess. But as with her Captain Marvel run, I’m confident it’ll lead to some interesting stories. And with Aquaman likely to get a bump from the movie releasing in December this is a good chance to rewrite the perception of the character, something that has been going in the last few years.
BATGIRL GETS POLITICAL
We are living in a time that it is tough to avoid anything political. Everything some form of politics in it. Which is why it has been surprising that we haven’t seen DC or Marvel explore that in their stories. January changes that as Mairghread Scott will have Barbara Gordon get involved in the world of politics. While it may be controversial there is a lot of potential for this political focused story to do something different with Barbara and Gotham City. It would definitely help the Batgirl series set itself apart from all the Batman Family comics on the market. Hopefully that potential is tapped into if Scott does go deep into this storyline.
WANNABE BRUCE WAYNE RETURNS
One of the best Batman stories in recent history was the one that Tom King wrote in Batman #38. In that issue King introduced a new villain that turned out to be a kid who was trying to make his backstory the “same” as Bruce Wayne. Flipping the script in having the kid turn out to be a Bruce Wayne villain rather than Batman made the story compelling enough. The way King executed on the concept put it over the top as one of the best stories King has written in his Batman run.
Now King will revisit that as the kid will be returning in Batman #62. With everything that has happened to Bruce in the last few months this is the last thing he needed to happen. That fact should make the kid’s return even more compelling than his introductory issue.
DOCTOR MANHATTAN VS. THE ENTIRE DC UNIVERSE
The build up to having Doctor Manhattan full appearance in the DC Universe finally happened in the recent issue of Doomsday Clock. In his big appearance Dr. Manhattan revealed that he had a vision of the future were he and Superman had a fight. While that was something we all expected to happen when Doomsday Clock was announced Geoff Johns revealed that Dr. Manhattan can’t see a future beyond his fight with Superman.
While we don’t know what that will mean for the future of the DC Universe we will start to see Dr. Manhattan take on the heroes of the DCU in Doomsday Clock soon. And from the cover of Doomsday Clock #9 that will not be a good thing for the DCU heroes as we see that Dr. Manhattan seemingly took them all out and only leaving their costumes behind. That is a scenario that is believable given Dr. Manhattan’s God-like powers.
WALLY WEST’S HEROES IN CRISIS FATE FINALLY ADDRESSED
In the last few weeks we have seen the DC Universe rocked by the events of Heroes In Crisis. The events in that comic have been addressed in other comics as Green Arrow and the Titans dealt with Roy Harper’s death. Oddly no one seems to have reacted to Wally West supposed death in Heroes In Crisis. That brought to question if Wally West was actually killed in Heroes In Crisis #1.
Finally in January 2019 The Flash Annual #2 will address Wally’s death. It is odd that it is taking so long for such an important character’s death to be addressed. Even with Wally fate being addressed in The Flash Annual #2 we do see Wally in his Flash costume on the cover of Heroes In Crisis #4. While Wally is not shown to be conscious the mere fact that he is on another cover of Heroes In Crisis leads to question his fate and role in the big DC event.
MERA REPLACING AQUAMAN IN JUSTICE LEAGUE
With Aquaman on a journey of self-discovery it seems that DC may be removing him from the Justice League series after Drowned Earth. To help fill Aquaman’s void it looks like Mera will join the Justice League. At least that is what seems to be implied by the fact that she is on the Justice League Annual #1 cover and is not stated as a special guest in the solicitation. This wouldn’t be a surprise since DC Comics has been slowly elevating Mera’s status within the DCU as one of their badass warrior characters. Being a member of the Justice League will fast track that character elevation in a way that does not look out of place.
TITANS HUNT FOR RAVEN’S SOUL
With Nightwing out of commission there is a big question as to how the Titans will deal with the Source Wall energy crisis without their leader. Dan Abnett will continue to deal with that in January as the Titans finally clash with Mother Blood and the Blood Cult. The build for Mother Blood and the Blood Cult has been slow so it’ll be great that Abnett will going all in on this story. Having it involve the story involve the Titans trying to retrieve Raven’s soul-self will be a good way to knock out two birds with one stone. And hopefully we see one or two of the Titans rise up to fill the big leadership void that exists on the team.