SDCC 2017: Vertigo Comics & John Ridley Panel


Vertigo Comics is back at Comic-Con International: San Diego and they’re bringing with them one of the most acclaimed and successful writers, John Ridley. In their panel, the screenwriter talked about his newly launched sequel of the American Way. There was also news about some of Vertigo’s ongoing titles such as Astro City and Savage Things.

The panel was kicked off by Vertigo’s Executive Editor Mark Doyle and brought out Vertigo Group Editor Jamie Rich. In the panel, Rich focused on finding creators that can provide a unique voice and unique space. Then, Academy Award winning writer John Ridley took center stage and talked about American Way: Those Above and Those Below, the sequel to American Way. He also reminisced on when he first published the first series at WildStorm ten years ago and how he got his start with WildStorm by doing an Authority story, and then a Warblade story.

American Way talks about a black astronaut that gets powers, set against the Civil Rights movement of the 60s. The sequel picks up in the 70s according to Ridley, channeling the Civil Rights leaders of the area archetypes of the main characters. Ridley also said that the story will ask questions relevant to politics, but “it’s about respecting the fact that we as a people, and we as a nation repeat ourselves.” John Ridley also said that the story was heavily influenced by Denny O’Neil and Deny Cowan’s Question series.

Also, Georges Jeanty, who originally drew the series, has returned for the sequel. “I could not do it without him,” Ridley said. “The art evolved to a more raw, edgy setting and is not parodying 1970’s art.” Ridley also praised Jeanty for how the art portrays the time period, and his extensive research. Colorist Nick Filardi is also on the team and developed a very 70s specific color palatte. John Ridley said that his creative partners, “ask questions about things that make me think about the story in a different way.”

In the panel, Harley Quinn creator Paul Dini also joined, which he discusses the Eisner Award nominated Dark Night: A True Batman Story, which came out around the time of last year’s SDCC. It tells a story about Dini’s experience of how he recovered from a robbery and attack that had a profound effect on his life.

The panel was also joined by Scott Snyder which talked about American Vampire, which Mark Doyle describes as Vampires as one way to explore American history. Snyder mentions that American Vampire is about “everything he loves and fears” about American History. He also mentions that there are a few more arcs and then American Vampire will “transform into a different kind of series.” Snyder also says that it is not done and it can spread out in different “tributaries.” American Vampire takes place in the 70s which follows a new breed of vampires that originates in America. The story will also reveal that all monsters in the American Vampire will be traced to one single bloodline.

After that, a video montage was played, celebrating the 75 years of Vertigo Comics. It showed previous Vertigo series and other original art.

There you have it. The panel for all things Vertigo. For news all about SDCC 2017, be sure to stick around here at DC Comics News.

Reigh Carlo

Reigh Carlo

An aspiring Writer and Poet with high hopes to bring justice and truth to all people and to help others at all cost, just like the superheroes in comic books.