Two of DC's most-buzzed-about series, Batman: Damned and Doomsday Clock, have delayed upcoming issues, according to retailers.
Ryan Higgins of Comics Conspiracy tweeted out the news about Batman: Damned #3, originally set to go on sale on March 27. The issue, from writer Brian Azzarrello and artist Lee Bermejo, will be the final issue of the first-ever DC Black Label miniseries.
While sales have been brisk and fans are enthusiastic enough that Diamond Select Toys yesterday announced a Batman: Damned Vinimate, the series has had some stumbling blocks. It is most famous for having recalled its sold-out first issue after fans complained that Bermejo's art revealed full frontal Batman-nudity in one panel.
Doomsday Clock #9 has been delayed until March 6 (at least for now), marking the latest in a series of incremental delays for the issue, which will pit Superman against Doctor Manhattan. The Watchmen follow-up by Geoff Johns, Gary Frank, and Brad Anderson has been a big commercial success, but when it started to slip behind schedule early in its run, DC announced that the book would be going on a bimonthly schedule, shipping every two months rather than monthly.
Doomsday Clock #8 hit the stands the first week in December, with #9 originally scheduled for release last week. Now that it has been pushed back to March 6, that will make a full three months between issues. The story is set a year in the future of the DC Universe, and the original plan was for DC's comics to "catch up" to it by the time it concluded. That plan has likely been scrapped at this point, since DC has various other events, from Heroes in Crisis to the just-announced Year of the Villain project, in the works.
“Doomsday Clock is a very involved story and I didn’t think that the bimonthly schedule was favorable for the title,” said Jeff Watkins of Cloud City Comics and Toys in Upstate New York. “But our numbers have not decreased. We’re still selling out, and reordering, and still selling out of reorders.”
This has not been a good-news kind of day for DC and its readers; Higgins also revealed earlier this afternoon that Second Coming, the planned Mark Russell/Richard Pace series that teamed Jesus up with a thinly-veiled Superman analogue, had been cancelled amid protests from religious fans.
While both of these represent challenges for DC -- they are high-profile and best-selling projects, so certainly nobody wants to see them delayed -- they are also both being conceived as evergreen products that will do as well in the bookstore and trade paperback/collected edition market as they do in single-issue comic books.
More details on these books (and their release dates) as we know them.
ComicBook.com has reached out to DC for comment, but has not received a response.