Airbag Industries

Infinite.

DC, the comic magnate owned by Time Warner, and who’s catalog of characters include Superman, Batman, Starman, and Wonder Woman is revamping their entire universe, starting today.

“Our characters were created in the 1940’s and 50’s and 60’s,” Dan DiDio, the DC Comics vice president for editorial, said. “There’s a lot of elements where we’ve had a disconnect with the reader base of today.”

Readers now, Mr. DiDio said, “are more savvy, and they’re looking for more complexity and more depth for them to be following the stories on a monthly basis.” A crucial phase of the campaign starts today with the release of “Infinite Crisis,” the first of a seven-part monthly series that will bring together all the story threads – and the superheroes – that have been evolving in separate series over the past three years.

Toward the end of “Infinite Crisis,” the characters will be catapulted a year into the future, some emerging with significantly new outlooks. To explain their transformation, next May DC will begin publishing “52,” a yearlong weekly series set in “real” time chronicling the gap in the heroes’ lives. By the end of the process, DC hopes to have recreated a universe of superheroes more in keeping with the times.

DC Comics has done this before but for different reasons. The results divided the comic fan base some not so happy, others quite satisfied. Interestingly enough, artist George Perez will take command of the pencils during the Infinite project just as he did twenty years ago with the original DC universe snow-globe job.

I would shrug this off as just another DC stunt to sell more books, which it still is of course, but the writing talent selected might make for an interesting ride and outcome.

Tapped to do this work are renowned comic writers Greg Rucka, Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison and Mark Waid. Rucka does great work with a noir taint and he’s likely the one who will add the ‘grit’. Johns and Morrison have a way of crafting a good story lines with massive threads — Johns tells a good superhero story while Morrison has the ability to bring out left field and slam it on top of your head. Mark Wade is the co-creator behind the huge hit, and excellent read, Kingdom Come — painted by Alex Ross, it’s close to being coffee table quality.

Too long has it been since I’ve walked into the comic shop. These days I get my fix from the occasional graphic novel or trade paperback but this might be worth taking a look-see.