A few days ago, I posted about how fan-favorite Batwoman artist Amy Reeder was leaving the title, citing creative differences. As one of the most celebrated comic artists currently working in the industry, Reeder’s departure from Batwoman was quite a shock and a huge disappointment for her and Batwoman’s fans. At the time, there weren’t all that many details regarding the reasoning behind her walking away from Batwoman. Now, Reeder and J.H. Williams III (the writer and co-artist of Batwoman) are both beginning to drop vague, yet fairly sharp explanations about what had happened.
Writing on her blog, Amy Reeder wrote the following…
I’m sure there’s a lot of curiosity about what exactly happened, which is understandable. But I can’t get too far into it–in addition to trying to be a professional and not burn bridges, it’s complicated enough that I find it difficult (and frustrating) to explain even to friends.
The jist of it, though, was that it was a bad situation, and kept getting worse and more intense until it became impossible. I am a long-term project kinda girl and I was so excited about being on Batwoman…I didn’t want to let go of it and fought until it was over.
It was bad enough that now I’d rather just be happy and move forward: I’m honestly very excited by the possibilities. All this has strengthened my resolve to do my own thing again–write, draw, color, letter. My work is, by nature, better as a full experience, and the process makes me so incredibly happy that I can’t stop drawing. Which also means more comics for you. Anyway, not saying it’s my guaranteed next step, but if there is a way for me to do that and pay the bills, I will.
While not naming names, it’s a safe bet that Reeder’s beef is with J.H. Williams III. As the writer of the book, and sometimes artist, it would seem that their two styles, and possible the work load arrangement, created a stressful and dysfunctional environment. Adding to the evidence that Williams and Reeder weren’t on very good terms, in his own blog post regarding the creative changes, Williams takes pains not to even mention the contributions of Reeder and goes out of his way to promote Trevor McCarthy, the incoming Batwoman artist. Here’s what Williams had to say…
Anyway, artistic shifts are happening on the second arc of Batwoman. Unavoidable, but thats the thing with monthly comics, things shift before expected sometimes.
But we’re glad we have Trevor McCarthy able to step in. His work for DC on other things has been really great, Gates Of Gotham, Nightwing to name a couple. All nicely done, so we’re enthused to see what he’ll do with Batwoman. Go check out his Deviant Art Galleries, some great examples.
And we get the treat of a Ben Oliver cover to grace Trevor’s first issue. While I will be doing covers 10 and 11, and return to interior art duties on issue 12.
In the comments to that post, Williams adds a little more, but still refusing to mention Reeder and, again, focuses on the incoming McCarthy…
Support of readers like you mean a great deal. And Trevor deserves to be given the same opportunity as anyone else. And he is really good. I just want the book to do well. And seeing that there is some ugliness being thrown around on other message boards on the creative change is rather disheartening. So again thank you for the support you’ve shown this book. We all really appreciate it.
However, as pointed out by Comics Alliance, Williams may have said a bit more about the situation in another blog post, that was published on the same day as the news of Amy Reeder’s departure was announced. Speaking in very vaugue terms, and not even referencing Batwoman or Reeder, here’s what Williams posted…
Some weighted stress inducing complicated botheration has slid off my very tired back. Dropping to the ground in slow-motion, but with enough impetus to hit the surface, cracking, crumbling into small dusty pieces. That I then can sweep up, carry out of the house, scatter in the garden so they can transform and grow into reinvigorated energy, without anything left of adverse emotions. Disavowed, sifted, filtered, cleansed. Releasing my mind from unnecessary tensions that should never have been there in the first place.
So do we know any more about why Amy Reeder left Batwoman? Not really. However, it would seem that whatever drama unfolded behind the scenes, it got so bad that either Reeder or Williams would have to go and, sadly, it was Reeder to ended up leaving. Nothing against J.H. Williams III, but he was not the reason so many people were reading Batwoman. His writing was good, but Amy Reeder’s artwork was great, something special and rare, even. As I said before, with Reeder out, I’ll no longer be reading Batwoman, as her art was the only thing that kept me coming back for more. Time will tell how much of an impact Reeder’s leaving will financially impact the book. My bet is that there will be a noticeable drop off in sales. We’ll see.
Filed Under: Comic Books