Few comic book writers have conquered the Marvel Universe like Brian Michael Bendis. But after two decades charting the trajectory of the publishing line, writing some of the company's greatest characters, Bendis is moving on to the Distinguished Competition.
The prolific comic book creator will begin his exclusive contract at DC Comics with a collaboration with Jim Lee on their flagship character Superman, as part of the unprecedented Action Comics #1000. But Marvel attempted to keep Bendis, and the writer recently revealed what was pitched to him to keep his talents at the House of Ideas.
While speaking on the Word Balloon podcast with John Siuntres, Bendis revealed that he was offered the opportunity to work on two of their highest profile characters, but he was more concerned with ending the various long-running stories he was helming.
"Legacy felt like these stories could be the 'last stories' for these characters Riri (Ironheart), Miles (Spider-Man) and Jessica [Jones]," said Bendis. "[Executive Editor] Tom Brevoort came to me with offers to write Deadpool & Wolverine and some other big projects. Tom was being ambitious, but it felt like the mountain had already been climbed."
The writer has only tackled Deadpool in event comics and as a guest star, but has never had a substantial run with the character. But Bendis made the (at the time) controversial decision to add Wolverine to the Avengers in his New Avengers run, alongside Spider-Man, making Earth's Mightiest Heroes comparable to DC's own Justice League lineup by including Marvel's most popular characters.
Though he wrote the Best There Is At What He Does once more in his Uncanny X-Men and All New X-Men comics, the character was a supporting character at best. It's interesting that Marvel offered him Wolverine, considering the character was still dead and Marvel only teased his return in the Marvel Legacy one-shot. The publisher's plans to revive the character apparently were part of editorial initiative, and not because a creator came up with a good pitch to bring Logan back.
And while Deadpool comics have been consistent sellers and the character's profile will likely rise much more with the release of the new movie, there's little Bendis could do with the character that he hasn't done on his Spider-Man titles over the last few years.
He himself recognizes that he's reached the summit at Marvel, and the only thing left to do is climb once more with an entirely different library of characters. It'll be interesting to see what he can accomplished with Superman, Wonder Woman, and the rest of the Justice League over at DC Comics.