Following up on the November 2015 alt. cover event that paired classic Looney Tunes cartoon characters with DCU super-heroes, DC will delve a few blocks deeper into Toon Town this July with publication of six special issues teaming characters from the two universes in actual stories.
It’s not the first time DCU heroes have met denizens of the Warner Brothers cartoon stable, of course. The two realities first cross over in the Superman & Bugs Bunny four-issue limited series, courtesy of writer Mark Evanier, with Joe Staton manning the art chores.
But the new specials promise a more nuanced approach, with specific pairings by top talents.
After teasing the upcoming event in mid-July, DC Comics released full details this past week — with cover images and solicitation copy — via an exclusive arrangement with Comic Book Resources. While some of the specials appear to portray the Looney Tunes crew as per their traditional model sheets, most of the interpretations appear to be taking a cue from DC’s recent Hanna-Barbera re-imaginings.
The specials will all be 48 pages. A cover price was not given for any of the books, but DC has recently issued 48-page comics at $4.99. Still, the company has traditionally kept books featuring the Warner Bros. characters at its lowest current price point.
Here is what we can expect:
BATMAN/ELMER FUDD SPECIAL #1
(on-sale June 28)
Written by current BATMAN scribe Tom King, with art and cover by Lee Weeks (THE BATMAN CHRONICLES).
SYNOPSIS — “After a chance meeting with billionaire Bruce Wayne, multi-millionaire Elmer Fudd’s obsession quickly escalates into stalking Batman through the dark alleys and high-class social settings of Gotham City.”
NOTE: This cover drew particular praise from the UNCHARTED panel Friday at the Emerald City Comic-Con, according to coverage by Newsarama.com. Based on online commentary from fans, it does appear to be the most highly anticipated of the specials.
JONAH HEX/YOSEMITE SAM SPECIAL #1
(on-sale June 28)
Written by Jimmy Palmiotti (HARLEY QUINN), with art and cover by Mark Texeira (JONAH HEX/HEX).
SYNOPSIS — “When miner Yosemite Sam strikes it rich, word gets out as everyone comes gunning for his wealth, including the notorious Freleng gang! To protect himself and his his new riches, he hires bounty hunter Jonah Hex—but the man protecting him may be his worst nightmare!”
NOTE: I believe this will mark Texeira’s first work on DC’s preeminent western character since the mid-1980s. Palmiotti’s Harley book remains red hot, so this special promises to be a hoot-and-a-half.
LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES/BUGS BUNNY SPECIAL #1
(on-sale June 14)
Written by Sam Humphries (GREEN LANTERNS), with art and cover by Tom Grummett (SUPERBOY) and Scott Hanna (GREEN LANTERN CORPS).
SYNOPSIS — “The Legion of Super Heroes always thought they had taken their inspiration from the 21st Century’s Superboy. But when they try to bring that hero into their future time, the team discovers to their surprise the caped champion isn’t who—or even what—they expected!”
NOTE: The most traditional depiction in this batch of specials, as least based on the cover. Grummett is, in my opinion, a perfect match based on his ’90s Superboy run and an ability to make teens look like teens. Of course, Legion fans are a persnickety lot, and those on a couple of LSH-themed Facebook pages are already complaining that Ultra Boy’s chest icon is colored wrong, and that he is not exactly known for wearing gloves.
LOBO/ROAD RUNNER SPECIAL #1
(on-sale June 21)
Written by Bongo Comics co-founder Bill Morrison, with art and cover by Kelly Jones (BATMAN: GOTHAM AFTER MIDNIGHT).
SYNOPSIS — “Wile E. Coyote travels to the far reaches of space to hire Lobo to hunt down and kill his greatest nemesis of all time, The Road Runner. When the Coyote and Lobo are after you, the Road Runner realizes, if they catch him he’s through.”
NOTE: With Morrison writing, this promises to be a treat, while Jones appears to be giving is a hyper-realistic Road Runner. Although I have never been a fan of Lobo, and despite my deep, abiding love of all things Legion, this may be my most anticipated of the specials.
MARTIAN MANHUNTER/MARVIN THE MARTIAN SPECIAL #1
(on-sale June 14)
Written by Steve Orlando (JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA) and Frank Barbieri (LOBO), with art and cover by Aaron Lopresti (DEATH OF HAWKMAN).
SYNOPSIS — “Martian Manhunter tries to halt Marvin the Martian’s determination for world domination. J’onn is conflicted with his own Martian identity as he attempts to stop the hapless, determined Marvin from blowing Earth to bits in order to gain a clear view of Venus.”
NOTE: Possibly the most, “Well, dug,” pairing of the lot, there would probably have been rioting in the streets had DC not considered this match-up. And, with Lopresti at the drawing board, it’s sure to be a beautiful book.
WONDER WOMAN/TASMANIAN DEVIL SPECIAL #1
(on-sale June 21)
Written by Tony Bedard (R.E.B.E.L.S.) and drawn by Barry Kitson (LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES, with a cover by DC co-publisher Jim Lee.
SYNOPSIS — “Not since the twelve labors of Hercules has a Greek warrior faced as great a danger and as destructive a peril as the Tasmanian Devil!”
NOTE: It remains to be seen just how much Looney Tune there will be in this particular Devil, as Lee’s cover makes him appear like any central casting monster the Amazing Amazon might face in her own mag. Still, this appears to be the special generating the most fan interest after the Batman/Elmer Fudd book, even if it has the most non-specific synopsis of the lot.
Well, that’s the run-down DC fans. What do you think — love the concept? Hate it? Are there any pairings you would have preferred? Me, I’d have thought a Flash/Speedy Gonzales team-up would have been a natural. Tweety Bird/Black Canary would have worked for me, too, as would Green Lantern Corps/Duck Dodgers.
Let us know what you think, are these already on your pull list, or are they a hard pass? Sound off in the comments section, below!