DC’s All Access: Justice League – NYCC Panel Recap

Geoff Johns and Jim Lee at NYCC 2011

Who would have thought that thousands of fans would be want to catch up with Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman and their best friends at New York Comic Con? The panel kicked right off, welcoming Justice League writer Geoff Johns, and JL artist Jim Lee. The relaxed team showed off some pages from Justice League #2, including a super-speed fight between Superman and Flash that drew huge cheers from the crowd.

Justice League #2

Also shown off? Art with Aquaman, to which a fan shouted out, “Will he have any land-based powers?” Johns shot right back, “Yeah, he can kick your ass.”

And the last bit was a shot of the new take on villain Darkseid, who is a little different than we knew him. “He has a thong,” joked Johns.

Next up was Dan Jurgens to chat about Justice League International. The new villain facing off against the JLI is named Paraxis, and he shows up in issue two. The team will have to split up to take care of threats all over the world.

Then it was over to Aquaman – to huge cheers from the crowd. Johns plugged that in issue two, Aquaman is fighting in an airplane, the plane explodes, and Aquaman finds himself in the middle of a desert. The crowd cheered. The first arc is about a new race called The Trench, and the first year of stories centers on the mystery of who sunk Atlantis.

J.T. Krul and Brian Azzarello

Then it was time to chat about Wonder Woman with writer Brian Azzarello and artist Cliff Chiang. On the recent news that Wonder Woman’s origin was changed, Azzarello said, “We didn’t change it, we enhanced it. I didn’t want the controversy to be about her pants. I wanted it to be about her genes.” The whole audience, simultaneously, said “Zing!” (OK, Not true.) Azzarello proceeded to go through the slides with his usual dry wit, explaining pages by saying, “You don’t know who that is. That’s Wonder Woman. That’s her using her lasso. Next slide.”

So it was on to The Flash, with writer/artist Francis Manapul. “We’re utilizing every aspect of the comic book to tell a story, from the writing, to the art, to the colors,” said Manapul. “How do you defeat the fastest man alive? You make him sit still.”

This was followed by The Savage Hawkman with writer Tony Daniel. Did they show off some art? Yes, they did. Did Daniel talk about it? He did! “It’s been a privilege to tell this story, and to reinvent him for fans,” said Daniel. “The core essence of this title is action.”

Eric Wallace, writer of Mister Terrific, was up next, and talked about how Mr. T will experience adventures everywhere, including outer space. This was followed by Firestorm, and again, a few pages were shown off, followed by J.T. Krul talking about Captain Atom.

Last up was Ann Nocenti, who’s taking over as writer of Green Arrow. “Well, obviously, when you look around the room, I’m the token female,” said Nocenti. “I think there was some kind of pressure on DC to get more women, but I’m happy to be the token.”

She continued: “I’m going to give Arrow a Typhoid class girlfriend.” For those newer readers to which that sounds inexplicable, she’s referring to Typhoid Mary, a Daredevil character she created.

Then we moved to audience questions!

– Starting in Justice League #5, Gary Frank and Geoff Johns will be doing a back-up story called “The Curse of Shazam,” which will potentially launch a new Shazam ongoing.

– Asked whether New 52 sales are just to older comic book readers, Bob Wayne said, “We signed on with Nielsen, and we’ve been doing a survey of readers. We’re interested in learning about it, but we think from anecdotal stuff that we’re not just reaching the people we were reaching before.”

– Talking about the Starfire controversy, Lee said, “We’re doing fifty-two books, so not every book is to everyone’s taste. That said, I think it’s really great to hear the feedback, because that is part of comic books. We’re throwing a party, and its up to you to let us know if the nachos are not to your taste.”

– Johns told a story about why he likes Cyborg, which was inspired by a time when was working on Flash, but didn’t have a lot of use for the character Jesse Quick. So, he traded her for Cyborg with the Teen Titans writer, and fell in love with him.

At the end, Jim Lee added that he felt like Ann Nocenti wasn’t given a fair introduction, talking about her long runs on Daredevil, Longshot, etc. “I know she was being semi-facetious, but her hiring was in the works before San Diego Comic-Con. We hire women not because they’re women, but because they’re fantastic, terrific talents.”

So there you go! Everything Justice League, all the time. We’ll see you back here at MTV Geek for more from NYCC–but before you go, check out a video interview we shot with Jim Lee and Geoff Johns at the show:

NYCC 2011: Jeff Johns and Jim Lee Talk The New 52

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