Why did DC Comics remove Kevin Maguire from Justice League 3000?
Update: 11 August 2013 – Brian Bendis announces Kevin Maguire as the next Guardians of the Galaxy artist
In a surprise announcement, superstar Marvel Comics writer Brian Michael Bendis has announced that Kevin Maguire will be the new Guardians of the Galaxy artist. According to Bendis, Maguire will be taking over the penciling duties for Guardians of the Galaxy effective with issue #10.
In a post appearing over at his Tumblr blog, Brian Bendis broke the news regarding Kevin Maguire coming over to Marvel as the Guardians of the Galaxy artist, writing…
As I have made it very clear on this tumbler I think artists like Kevin are a national treasure and should be treated as such by publishers and readers alike. as Matt fraction said at dinner last night he is probably one of the most influential comic artists of this generation but doesn’t get enough credit for it. you can see his influence in a lot of places.
we have been talking about working together on an off for a while but the stars never aligned. I am not exactly sure what happened to him this week but I would like to thank whoever it was that made it possible for Kevin to join me on guardians of the galaxy number 10. which I hope will be the first of many projects together.
I may have just announced something I wasn’t supposed to
Original post: 10 August 2013 – Kevin Maguire fired as Justice League 3000 artist
DC Comics has fired artist Kevin Maguire from Justice League 3000. Maguire broke the news himself earlier this week, when he sent out a tweet saying that he had just lost the job. After removing Kevin Maguire from the book, DC announced that Howard Porter will be the new Justice League 3000 artist. Additionally, as a result of the switch, the new comic book series will be delayed, not launching until December.
I think I was just fired
— Kevin Maguire (@maguirekevin) August 8, 2013
Anyone have any comics they need drawn?
— Kevin Maguire (@maguirekevin) August 8, 2013
As I mentioned when the Justice League 3000 comic book was first announced, one of the selling points to the series was that it would be reuniting Kevin Maguire, Keith Giffen, and JM DeMatteis. Those three were the creative force behind the Justice League relaunch back in the mid-80′s and had a run on that book that is considered to be an all-time classic by many. So why did DC Comics fire Kevin Maguire from Justice League 3000 before he even had the chance to draw the first issue?
Obviously, DC Comics isn’t talking. However, Justice League 3000 co-writer Keith Giffen did give some insight into why Maguire was switched out for Howard Porter, telling Newsarama…
The guy who nailed the character designs on the interior of the book? The guy who teamed with Grant Morrison to make JLA a hit? This is what they call a no-brainer. Welcome aboard Howard. I think this is the beginning of a beautiful collaboration.
Based on this quote, it seems the answer to why DC fired Kevin Maguire is because it found someone better…at least in its opinion. And the fact that Giffen calls the move a “no brainer” seems to indicate that he, as one of the writers of the book, agrees with the decision to fire Kevin Maguire.
In a response that he posted over at Bleeding Cool, Kevin Maguire made it clear that DC’s decision to fire him from the Justice League 3000 comic book came as a painful shock, writing…
Well, I don’t want to make any big deal about it but I suppose I should say something. This is, as I tweeted, very humiliating. Obviously, I was looking forward to working on a fairly high profile book. I haven’t had a top ten book since the ’80s and I thought this would finally be my shot at doing one. But it’s DC’s book, it’s their property, they can do whatever they want with it. They don’t owe me anything. I’ve been told they wanted a book that was “dark and gritty”, so I’m perplexed as to why they chose us for that. We did exactly the kind of book you would expect from us. Lots of action and humor. And I turned down a [Brian] Bendis X-Men project to do ‘JL3K.’
As for my doing other projects with DC, they offered me a four page story and a 10 page digital first story. They’re paychecks, so I’m grateful for that, but they’re no ‘Justice League’ #1. I really don’t want to do back ups and fill-ins for my career. So, right now, I’ll do the four pager and then I think that’ll be it for me and DC for a while. I’ve received some interesting offers from other companies. Marvel generously offered me an issue of a cool book, so I’m going to do that for now, then see what happens. I was supposed to do Baltimore Comic Con next month with [Keith] Giffen and [J.M.] DeMatteis, but I’ll be canceling that for obvious reason. Apart from the fact that I no longer have a project to promote with them, Giffen’s Newsarama quote, which I’m certain had no intended malice, still kinda stung. That’s it. That covers all I have to say about this. It’ll be forgotten news by next week and we all move on with our lives.
Ouch. Clearly, drawing Justice League 3000 meant a lot to Kevin Maguire. I’m glad to hear that he has other work lined up, but DC trying to offer him a four page backup story and a ten page “digital first” story to draw instead of Justice League 3000 seems more like a slap in the face than anything.
Personally, I would have liked to see Kevin Maguire as the artist for JL3K. If for no other reason than it would have been awesome to see him drawing the Justice League again, I think he should have been given the chance to work on at least the first few issues. It’s not as if his artwork is second rate by any stretch of the imagination. This just seems like, in my opinion, another example of DC Comics treating its talent like sacks of meat. Once again, its manic indecisiveness and lack of class is on full display.
What are your thoughts on DC firing Kevin Maguire from Justice League 3000?
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