Connecting efforts across various stages of media is often considered “corporate synergy”. DC Comics continues to capitalize on their success on network TV in regards to kicking off comic books intended to cater to similar audiences. Yesterday (December 14) both ICv2 and IGN have revealed that DC Comics will be launching “Legends of Tomorrow” and “Adventures of Supergirl” comics next year to link up with upcoming (and current) TV shows on the CW Network and CBS, respectively.
“Supergirl” has recently debuted on CBS and is set to get a full season order, which has led indirectly to DC Comics’ latest digital-first series, “Adventures of Supergirl”. Written by veteran “Supergirl” writer Sterling Gates and drawn by artists such as Bengal, Jonboy Meyers, Emanuela Lupacchino, and Emma Vieceli, “Adventures of Supergirl” will be a 13 chapter digital comic book series which will be released on every Monday starting on January 25. By sheer coincidence, the “Supergirl” TV show airs Monday nights on CBS. While the comic won’t directly tie into the continuity of the TV show (unlike some of the “Arrow”, “Flash”, or “Smallville” digital first comics), it will feature similar elements such as the exploits of Kara Danvers working for “CatCo” (the company owned by Cat Grant) and fighting enemies such as Vril Drox and Psi. Bengal will pencil, ink, and color the first three chapters of this series. Unlike most of DC Comics’ digital first series, “Adventures of Supergirl” won’t be sold as individual comics afterward; instead DC will publish a trade collection of the series once it is completed later in 2016. The latest volume of her ongoing series was canceled earlier this year, but it stands to reason that a relaunch of it may happen next year with this digital series testing the waters for it.
Meanwhile, “Legends of Tomorrow” (which is a spin off of “The Flash”) is set to premiere on the CW Network in January, and DC Comics is capitalizing on it to kick off yet another attempt at an anthology comic book series. Starting with a near eight issue debut issue in March, “Legends of Tomorrow” will collect stories which were originally planned as a series of mini series featuring classic creators on long time franchises. These include “Firestorm” by Gerry Conway and artists Eduardo Pansica and Rob Hunter, “Metal Men” by Len Wein with art by Yildiray Cinar and Trevor Scott, “Metamorpho” written by Aaron Lopresti with art by Aaron Lopresti and Matt Banning, and finally “Sugar & Spike” by Keith Giffen with art by Bilquis Evelv. Many of these projects have been rumored for some time, and presumably issues have already been written and drawn, with DC trying to figure out the best way to package them in a way which may reap sales. Anthology comics have been a tough sell in the American comic book market. Arguably the most successful have been “Marvel Comics Presents” and “Dark Horse Comics Presents”, and both of their peaks were in the late 80’s to mid 90’s. Aside for “Firestorm”, none of the characters featured in the anthology will be in the TV show, which adds weight to the notion of this being a new package for some projects already in the can which DC Comics’ sales executives worry won’t be profitable. The series begins on March 9.