Through the Ages: Transition in Comics Part Four by Jerry Whitworth
While Grant Morrison and Alex Ross helped nudge a new direction in the
comics industry, they certainly didn¹t get there alone. Two men who helped
push this new direction to what it is today are Geoff Johns and Dan DiDio.
Johns was an up-and-comer in the film industry mentored by legendary
director Richard Donner (Superman, Lethal Weapon series) when he met DC
Comics editor Eddie Berganza who offered Johns the opportunity to pitch
ideas. One of those ideas reached fruition with Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E., an
update on the DC property Star-Spangled Kid and Stripesy. However, his next
two projects at the publisher would provide much more fanfare. The Flash,
coming off a longtime critically-received run under scribe Mark Waid, needed
a fill-in team to cover the book while an ongoing team could be established.
Johns came aboard with the storyline Wonderland and fans enjoyed it so much,
DC found their new ongoing writer. When James Robinson moved on to work on
projects in Hollywood, Johns would replace his position as co-writer on JSA
with David S. Goyer and he struck gold again. Meanwhile, Dan DiDio, who was
a writer and story editor for Mainframe Entertainment (ReBoot, Beast Wars:
Transformers), was hired as an administrator at DC, first as vice president
of editorial in 2002 and two years later as executive editor for the DC
Universe. It was around this time DC Comics vigorously pursued exclusive
contracts for work at the publisher, including luring talent from Marvel.
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