Your 2022 Predictions, Part Two: Shadowlands.

§ January 11th, 2023 § Filed under predictions § 11 Comments

Hang onto your hats, we’re about to jump back into your 2022 comic industry predictions…you can see Part One here, and if you want to submit your own predictions for 2023, you can do that here!

William Gatevackes crashes in with

“1. George Perez’s diagnosis will lead to movement to get comic book creators healthcare for their golden years. It might actually make some headway.”

If there was one, I haven’t seen it, but like I said in Part One of this coverage, I don’t see everything that’s going on, so it’s possible I missed it. But given that well-established comic creatives like Peter David have to do a GoFundMe for recent health issues, I’m inclined to say not much has changed for folks in the U.S.

“2. There will be hints in films dropped of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and DC Extended Universe crossing over at some point. These will be inside jokes but might lead to something.”

Again, like I mentioned last time, there were DC hero namedrops in Eternals, which, granted, was a 2021 movie, but still. As far as I know, they haven’t done much more along those lines. A quick Google search reveals an alarming number of sites claiming that a DC/Marvel crossover movie is “possible.” Here’s a sample, but I’m going to suggest take any such reports with a giant grain of salt.

My guess, for this to happen at all, it would have to be like what happened in the ’90s when the comic market collapsed and Marvel and DC (and others) started doing crossover events to attract readers. When/if the superhero movie market starts failing, that may be the only time it’s vaguely possible such celluloid interaction could happen. But when you think of it as “Disney teaming up with Warner Bros.” that might put it in a slightly different perspective.

“3. A TV Series not adapted from the Big Two will become a “WALKING DEAD’ like cultural phenomenon.”

While there are quite a few comic-to-TV adaptations not from the Big Two, I don’t know if any have approached The Walking Dead when it was at its peak. Unless, like, Squid Games was based on a comic or something. Or was that 2021? Invincible was 2021, too, I think. The Boys? I don’t know. I think I’m gonna say Chainsaw Man, because what the heck.

“And I know you said only three but…
4. Mike Sterling will have a year free of health problems and continue to entertain his fans with his wit and humor.”

Well, I still haven’t got COVID, my eyeballs have been hanging together, and aside from a Christmas migraine, I’ve been okay. Now whether I’ve entertained with whatever I have that passed for “wit” and “humor,” that’s for you to judge.

• • •

Chris Gumprich cashes in the following

“1. Archie Comics realizes the true gold is in the pre-1990 comics and the digest reprints will exclusively focus on those.”

Archie’s focus seems to be 1) themed (like all-ages holiday or slightly edgier horror) one-shots, and 2) digests, which still seem to be a mix of newer material and a little of the older stuff from what I’ve seen. I imagine if you dig too deep, you start getting to the slightly racier stuff, and start getting cultural references in stories that today’s kids wouldn’t get. I mean, even that one story where they recolored a vinyl album into, apparently, a large compact disc, and redialogued the relevant balloons, wouldn’t quite fly now. “What’s a compact disc?” But then, kids might be able to relate better to vinyl, come to think of it.

“2. Matt Wagner announces he’s working on MAGE IV. No one believes him.”

I’d believe him. If he did it. Which he didn’t. But I’m still up for The Hero Disco-Dances whenever he gets around to it.

“3. DC relaunches a classic beloved character into their own series, then cancels it by issue 8.”

Well, there was the Aquamen series, which appears to have ended with #6, though I’m not sure if that was intended to be a mini-series or not. But then, a comic writer (was it Steven Grant?) recently said that pretty much everything is treated as a “mini-series” by default now, which I guess is probably self-evident by lifespans of books at the Big Two. Anyway, I’m seeing stories out there claiming “AQUAMEN CANCELLED” so I guess it was intended to go over six issues, maybe? I presume Aquaman still counts as “beloved.”

• • •

John Lancaster casts these in

“1. Friendly Frank’s will rise from the ashes to be the next competitor to Diamond’s comic book distribution.”

Might as well…more the merrier.

“2. Arnim Zola will finally be given his due and be made into a major villain, only to be ruined by the current crop of young writers that don’t understand Jack Kirby at all.”

Haven’t seen him too much this past year, but frankly I’d rather Marvel focus on him than Kang.

“3. Dial H for Hero will inexplicably become the next worldwide phenomenon…for about a week. Sockamagee!”

Oh, I wouldn’t say “inexplicably” if that happened, the premise (original and the ’80s revival) feels like it would be great for a TV show or cartoon. If it didn’t get called out as a Ben 10 rip-off, that is.

• • •

Daniel, who I hope is still reading, had this to say

“Marvel announces their own version of DC Fandome, which is effectively the beginning of the end of San Diego Comic-Con as the mega media convention it has become in the last 20 or 25 years (and will likely lead to it becoming the smaller version of itself that it was in the 1980s).”

With DC not doing a Fandome last year, it would have been a good time for Marvel to step up and fill that void. SDCC still does appear to be going strong, though. I don’t know what would unseat the San Diego show at this point, beyond a backlash against comics that drives down the show’s popularity and reduces its value to the city’s economy.

But speaking of Marvel conventions, have you seen this?

• • •

Adam Farrar comes closer with

“1. New Miracleman. I don’t think I even believe it this year. But I can’t stop predicting it. It’s a sickness.”

IT ACTUALLY HAPPENED, ADAM. JUST UNDER THE WIRE.

“2. Jonathan Hickman will write at least part of one X-book after Inferno #4. It might just be a one-shot or collaborating on a key story.”

There was X-Men Unlimited: Latitude #1, released in March of last year, written by Mr. Hickman! My search also apparently turned up his name being attached to the late-in-the-year release X-Men Annual #1 (#1? honestly), but far as I can tell it’s only credited to another writer. What am I missing? I don’t have a copy right in front of me to check.

“3. Al Ewing writes a DC book.”

Not yet, but he has his own page on DC.Com…only one credit there so far (the 2012 anthology Ghosts, but there’s always room for more!

• • •

Shannon Smith forges this

“Comics with codes to redeem for credit towards NFTs and crypto. Satan laughing spreads his wings.”

Ew, gross, I didn’t see any but I bet someone must have. I’m going to consider myself lucky that I didn’t in case any are out there.

• • •

demoncat_4 hopefully will never change with

“1 dc will get its film act together with the first being a swamp thing film directed by del toro”

Sadly, not yet, but here’s hoping that’s part of James Gunn’s plans.

“2 dc will also try again for a swamp thing tv series and it will last long enough to finaly have the constatine swamp thing team up in live action directed again by del toro.”

Also not yet, but from your lips to God’s ears, demoncat_4.

“3 disney will annouce they are doing a howard the duck tv series to be directed by kevin smith with jason mewes as dr. bong.”

Also also not yet, but you know what? I’d totally watch that. I know we’ll never have Steve Gerber writing our favorite duck ever again, so what the heck, let Smith have a shot. Anyway, I feel like Marvel Studios is slowly testing the waters for some kind of new Howard media thing, so some kind of TV (probably not a movie) isn’t ass impossible as it had been in the past.

• • •

Jason A Sandberg kicks the following into my face

“1. Realizing that have caught lightning in a bottle, MARVEL will make the Al Ewing/Javier Rodriguez DEFENDERS into an ongoing title. There will be much rejoicing and mindbending across comics fandom.”

We did get a second Defenders mini out of ’em, anyway. That ain’t nuthin’!

“2. In memoriam for the loss of a beloved creative titan, MARVEL and DC will publish a deluxe hardcover reissue of the JLA/AVENGERS crossover by Busiek and Perez. Proceeds will go to the https://www.heroinitiative.org/

As noted last time, we did get a reprint but in softcover. Proceeds did indeed go the the Hero Initiative, however, so that was nice.

“3. 2022 sees the long-promised, long-delayed return of JUPITER. There will be a modest Indigogo campaign that leads to a growing grassroots readership, which organically builds as the years roll on. Mike Sterling gets comped a retailer box of the new JUPITER #1 and becomes the go-to West Coast retailer for JUPITER.”

I can’t help but htink you’re trying to promote Jupiter, by a certain Jason A Sandberg, available at this link or through the now-fixed sidebar ad on this site! Still waiting on that case of Jupiters, however.

• • •

Okay, that’s enough blood squeezed from a stone today…I’ll be back on Friday to continue the fun, so come back, set a spell, take a load off.

11 Responses to “Your 2022 Predictions, Part Two: Shadowlands.”

  • Jon H says:

    ” I don’t know what would unseat the San Diego show at this point”

    It’d probably require San Diego itself to suffer a precipitous decline or otherwise become a place nobody wants to be.

    For instance if full-blown drug cartel wars started to break out on the streets of San Diego at random.

  • Randal says:

    Yay! I know the title theme!

  • Thelonious_Nick says:

    “3. Dial H for Hero will inexplicably become the next worldwide phenomenon…for about a week. Sockamagee!”

    Oh, I wouldn’t say “inexplicably” if that happened, the premise (original and the ’80s revival) feels like it would be great for a TV show or cartoon.

    There was a very interesting mini-series done about 10 years ago by dark fantasy novelist China Mieville that could make for a great, weird TV version.

  • Chris V says:

    I’m pretty sure the X-Men Annual listing Hickman as being involved was an error. He’s not credited as having anything to do with the writing anywhere (Steve Foxe is the sole credited writer). I can’t see anything being used in the main plot as something Hickman would have helped Foxe with the plotting. It’s mainly a Firestar spotlight comic and Hickman wasn’t exactly using Firestar while working on the series. I’d like to argue it was an error based on a transcription mix-up with another X-Men Annual #1 (there have been enough of those now), but Hickman never wrote an annual while writing the X-Men. He wrote a series of Giant-Size X-Men #1, but those aren’t annuals. I’m just going to mark it down to being a mistake.

  • Adam Farrar says:

    Two out of three! That probably beats my previous record by… two.

  • Thelonius:I think Mieville’s DIAL H was the best thing to come out of the new52. If HBOmax can pull off PEACEMAKER as a hit, anything is possible with the right people. (If you never read HERO by Will Pfeifer from the 00s, do so. There is a trade of the first six issues. A couple of done-in-one stories about addiction to being a hero with no time limit, and an adult Robby Reed shows up towards the end.)

    Mike Sterling: Honestly, I’m happy at the 12 issue maxis. If you recall OMEGA MEN was going to be cancelled but the fans got DC to run all 12 issues. Maybe the same with AQUAMEN.

    I hope everyone had a decent end of year/start of year. Peace out.

  • Jon H says:

    I was going to joke that there should be a grim and gritty take on Dial H for Hero but I guess the Mieville mini was grim and gritty and funny.

  • Sean Mageean says:

    All this talk of “Dial H for Hero” brings to mind Plastic Man no. 13, from June 1976, which features a very funny “Dial H for Hero”-related story by the great Steve Skeates, Ramona Fradon, and Bob Smith. The story is titled: “If I Kill Me, Will I Die?” Robby Reed, who is suffering from amnesia (and hadn’t been seen in a DC comic since 1968), is working at the resort where Plastic Man and his gang are on vacation, and a rusty H-dial causes Robby Reed’s hero forms to turn evil–including an evil Plastic man doppelgänger.

    Speaking of Plastic Man, James Gunn should really read all of the old original Jack Cole Plastic Man stories from Quality Comics and get a film or streaming Plastic Man and Woozy Winks project rolling–with Jim Carrey as Plastic Man and Paul Giamatti as Woozy Winks.

    And while I’m on a Plastic Man rant, here’s something interesting…the last issue of the the original Quality Comics Plastic Man run was in December of 1954–so he outlasted The Marvel (Shazam!) Family–which ceased publication after January of 1954. Barry Allen debuted in October of 1956, so that’s almost two years after Plastic Man ceased publication. But if DC hadn’t sued Fawcett Comics out of existence and the Marvel (Shazam1)Family had kept chugging along throughout the 1950s and the ’60s (just like Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman) and making good money for Fawcett, and if Quality Comics had managed to keep Plastic Man and Blackhawk going throughout the ’50s and ’60s (instead of selling its intellectual properties to DC Comics), would we even have had a Silver Age of comics as we know it? Or would Gardner Fox and Julius Schwartz simply have revived the JSA iterations of The Flash, Green Lantern, Hawkman, Atom, etc. beginning in 1954 ?

  • Sean Mageean says:

    Slight revision to what I wrote before…it turns out the last “Golden Age” issue of Plastic Man published by Quality Comics was no. 64 — which actually had a cover date of November 1956 — so that means that o.g. Plastic Man lasted one month beyond the publication of Showcase no. 4, which was the debut of the Silver Age Flash (Barry Allen)–which had a cover date of October 1956.

    In July 1966 Plas would make his DC Comics debut in House of Mystery no. 160 as one of the characters Robby Reed uses the “H” dial to become (and, on a side note, Reed would become a Bullet Man–the Fawcett Comics character– rip-off called “The Human Bullet” in HOM no. 157). Then DC would launch its first short-lived Plastic Man comic in December 1966.

    Anyway, a “Dial H For Hero” streaming show would be intriguing…maybe each season could depict a different iteration of the concept/franchise from the various decades.

    I think James Gunn should also consider a “Challengers of the Unknown” streaming series or film triptych. Harrison Ford is aging out as Indiana Jones, and if Gunn stuck with the original Jack Kirby characters and concepts, DC could possibly beat Marvel to the punch before a new Fantastic Four film comes out and establish the “Prof,” “Rocky,” and “Red”(which Kirby and Lee basically repurposed as Reed, Ben, and Johnny for the FF) and Ace as globe and dimension and inter-steller hopping trouble shooters and explorers…and bring June Robbins into the mix (as the Sue Storm Richards analogue). There could be cameos by Rip Hunter, Cave Carson, and The Sea Devils. And if Gunn really wanted to full throttle on the Kirby krackle, the Challs could have adventures where they time/space travel and meet the New Gods, or Kamandi, or OMAC, or Etrigan the Demon.

    Angel & The Ape, The Inferior Five, and Metal Men should also get streaming shows.

  • Snark Shark says:

    “Peter David have to do a GoFundMe”

    Not a shocker. I know John Ostrander had some serious health problem at some point, also.

    “my eyeballs have been hanging together”

    THAT DOESN’T SOUND RIGHT.

    “Arnim Zola”

    He may not have had a resurgence, but MODOK sure did!

  • David Conner says:

    FWIW, I think the references to DC in the MCU are clearly just acknowledging that characters like Superman and Batman are iconic fictional characters in their universe just like they are in ours. Nothing more, nothing less, but I like it as a little tip of the hat to the people who created and defined the genre.

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