DC Comics is going to begin 2024 with setting the foundation for how the rest of the year will go. A big foundational piece will be how the Titans: Beast World event. Along with that we will be getting our first look at the new direction for Action Comics that is titled Superman Superstars. Let’s take a look at the other big things to expect from DC Comics January 2024 comic book solicitations.
JASON AARON TAKES OVER ACTION COMICS
Jason Aaron isn’t stopping with just his Batman project when it comes to working with DC Comics. Now along with his Batman: Off-World series Aaron is also working on Superman’s Action Comics. DC Comics is certainly all in on working with Aaron. For Aaron’s part after working on the Avengers, X-Men, Spider-Man, Wolverine, Thor, Punisher, Hulk, and Star Wars, there wasn’t much more to accomplish at Marvel. Now he is taking that momentum to already work on projects with DC Comics two biggest character in Batman and Superman.
This also moves Action Comics away from the anthology series it launched as during Dawn of DC. Superman will be the sole star of Aaron’s story based on the solicitation for Action Comics #1061. This will start the new direction for the series, which is dubbed Action Comics: Superman Superstar, that DC Comics spoke about at New York Comic Con 2023. Based on how the announcement was done Superman is back as the lead of the series, rather than sharing the role with his Superman Family.
It’s a creative decision that is not surprising. While the idea of Action Comics being an anthology series is a great one that is filled with potential DC Comics never seemed committed to it. That was shown with how Superman was still the main driver of most of the anthology stories in Action Comics for the last year. That did not help sell the Superman Family as being able to carry the legacy that is Action Comics.
Which just created a self-fufilling prophecy that no one other than Clark Kent has some selling power within the Superman Family. It’s an unfortunate truth until DC Comics truly commits creatively and with proper marketing to propel the rest of the Superman Family to all be sustainable.
TITANS BEAST WORLD DEFINES DCU 2024
For as much as Knight Terrors was positioned as the Dawn of DC big event it is Titans: Beast World that is set to be the first event with massive ramifications for the DC Universe. A big reason for that is the emphasis on Amanda Waller in Beast World. Waller appears to be using this event to fully kick off her plans to turn the world against the superhero community. She appears to succeed as she’ll have at least half the world against the idea of superheroes.
This in turn sets up Beast World to define a lot about the direction for the DC Universe. This status quo of the idea of superheroes being challenged can impact most other comic books. Which could give a good direction for many to build off from that are just doing their own thing. Titles like Green Arrow, Superman, Flash, Hawkgirl, Shazam, and Birds of Prey can further this storyline from different perspectives.
If this is done well it can also further elevate the Titans importance to the DCU. It’ll further push the idea that they are the new Justice League as their events define the way the DCU goes. Which in turn can set up 2024 to be an even bigger year for the Titans than 2023 was.
SUPER SONS ADVENTURES IN TRINITY BABYSITTING
Thus far we have only got a brief glimpse of Wonder Woman’s future daughter, Trinity, aka Elizabeth Prince. But even with limited exposure thus far it doesn’t mean there aren’t big plan for Trinity, who has yet to be born in the main DC Universe continuity. To kick off 2024 we will be getting a Trinity one-shot that will see Lizzie as a young child being babysat by Damian Wayne and Jonathan Kent.
This’ll be an intriguing story as we know that in Trinity’s future DCU continuity when she has become Wonder Woman as an adult Damian and Jonathan are the Batman and Superman, respectively. This story can develop the big brother-little sister dynamic that Damian and Jonathan have with Trinity in this version of the DC Universe. Which would be a different take on all the other versions of the DC Trinity we’ve seen in other DCUs. And it’ll just be fun to see how the Super Sons do in a situation where they are made to babysit a kid.
On top of that the Trinity Special also is teased to set-up what her role will be in Tom King’s Wonder Woman run. There are a lot of things we still don’t know about Trinity. A big one is who her father is. Maybe we’ll get a hint of that. Or we could get a better understanding why King has decided to integrate Trinity’s future with what is going on in the present for Wonder Woman.
BATMAN’S IDENTITY CRISIS WORSENS
Both Chip Zdarsky and Ram V are emphasizing how in the post-Gotham War world that Bruce Wayne is not right mentally. In both Batman and Detective Comics series we see Bruce battling two inner-demons. In Batman it’s the Batman of Zur-En-Arrh personality that Bruce developed as a failsafe for himself. Then over in Detective Comics it’s the demon Azmer who has sent Batman on a mystical adventure.
While these two stories are different Zdarsky’s Batman and Ram V’s Detective Comics are both exploring Bruce’s mental health. All goes back to how over the last decade constantly going from one event after another has really taken a toll on Bruce. This comes after it looked as though the Batman Family was consistently fighting as a united front. 2024 looks to be a year where we will see Bruce Wayne’s mental health be a major story driver for at least Batman and Detective Comics’ books.
The question not answered from this is what it means for the rest of the Batman Family. Gotham War was supposed to create a new status quo for the franchise. But it doesn’t seem as though we see more than the normal from the January 2024 solicitations. Maybe we will see DC Comics announce what the plans are for Robin, Red Hood, Batgirls, Signal, and others for later in the year.
ROBIN LIVES REWRITES DEATH IN THE FAMILY
Almost 40 years later DC Comics is finally going to publish the alternate version of Batman #428. It will be the version of the story if Batman fans at the time voted to have Jason Todd live through the beating Joker killed him with in the original story. Based on everything said, DC Comics will not be doing any alterations to the original alternate version of Batman #428 that Jim Starlin and Jim Aparo created.
Given that DC Comics has decided to publish this in December 2023 it does create questions if they’ll leave it at just publishing this version of Batman #428. These type of decisions aren’t just one-offs. Given the notoriety of the Death in the Family storyline this version of Batman #428 could be one of DC Comics best selling single comics of 2023.
With that in mind we could see DC Comics pursue doing another Elseworld mini-series in a continuity where Jason Todd survived Joker’s attack. It’s not a story that hasn’t been done before but this is a chance to tell it in an official Elseworld story.