DC Blogs "G.I. COMBAT"

It's a common complaint from creators working on canceled titles at Marvel and DC that the publishers didn't do enough to market their comics, contributing in some way to the book's demise.  Even in the context of the New 52--where creators and editors have spoken of the democratizing effects of the launch itself being an Event--some titles have gotten much more of a push than others. Some disappointed fans have speculated that the recently-canceled DC titles may have had somewhat less support than equally unpredictable books that are still hanging around.

Not so with G.I. Combat, which launches in May with the recently-announced second wave of New 52 titles. In the last two days, the war anthology--which seems to be poised to replace the outgoing Men of War and Blackhawks on DC's slate--has been featured twice on DC's blog The Source.

The first story ran as a companion piece to an interview with Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray which ran at Newsarama yesterday and focused on the Unknown Soldier, including these two pieces of previously-unseen art by Dan Panosian. "Within this 4-part story we will be introducing new readers to our take of one of the coolest and enigmatic characters ever presented, adding our own personal twist and turns to the legacy that we think will thrill the readers," said Palmiotti. "We are so thrilled to have working with us Dan Panosian and Rob Schwager , two masters of the craft. Comics are a collaboration in every sense of the word and we think with Dan on art and Rob on color, we have raised the bar once again, presenting not only a unique looking story, but a distinctive representation of atmosphere and storytelling that will instantly pull any reader right into the wild and heartbreaking world we are representing. Our hope is that what we present has a life beyond the four parts and that fans embrace our take on the Unknown Solider.” It may be something of a hard sell, given that the most recent take on the property--a Vertigo series by Josh Dysart and Alberto Ponticelli--was well-liked and, before that, the character had been largely out of circulation for years. But if there's one team that can do it, it's Palmiotti and Gray, who have managed to keep readers coming back for more Jonah Hex for years now.

It seems worth noting, as an aside, that the filenames on the images downloaded from DC's blog seem to indicate that the Unknown Soldier story was at some point intended to appear in Men of War #7.

Today's entry, which didn't have any art to accompany it, saw the blog talking to Major Bummer creator John Arcudi about his forthcoming Haunted Tank features in the title. Said Arcudi, "Using war as a backdrop for fiction has a kind of universal appeal; not for the action or violence, but because war puts people in extreme circumstances. Every emotion is amped up and that makes for compelling stories. Obviously, Haunted Tank is a concept that takes that 'extreme' even higher by introducing a supernatural element, but still, a lot of potential there as long as you focus on the players and not the play."

He also managed to dive headlong into one of the most baffling elements of the original series--that even though it's a war book and people are in constant danger, the ghost always felt a little bit like something you might find in Scooby-Doo. "What’s great about this particular incarnation of Haunted Tank is that DC wanted me to really make it haunted, with a scary ghost and everything!" Explained Arcudi. " The old stories with Jeb Stuart’s ghost are a lot of fun, but I have a problem making war ‘fun.’ This approach is suited to my talents and tastes.”

No word yet from J.T. Krul, who was reported to be heading up the series with the lead feature, The War That Time Forgot. The New 52 - The Second Wave will begin in May 2012, and ComicBook.com will be here to review all 52 of DC's major superhero releases that month, including G.I. Combat #1.