After a little bit of a delay, Batman and the Outsiders, the new ongoing series by Bryan Hill and Dexter Soy featuring Black Lightning and Katana training Bat-sidekicks Signal and Orphan, finally hit stores this week. But one person who is decidedly not a fan of the new series, and in particular the new role for Black Lightning, is Black Lightning creator Tony Isabella.
Isabella took to Twitter yesterday to write:
And to follow it up later with:
And responding to a remark about DC's apparent reluctance to put Black Lightning in his own solo series despite the character having his own television show, Isabella said that's only because DC has no say in what ends up on television.
And also responded to tweets that the character's name, Black Lightning, is itself racist.
To be even more completely accurate, here's how Isabella described the creation of Black Lightning in an interview after a Bleeding Cool article about artist Trevor Von Eeden's Black Lightning TV show check sparked a disagreement between Isabella and Bleeding Cool Rumourmonger-in-Chief Rich Johnston:
Well, I guess I do share information with Trevor Von Eeden from time to time, because we have been friends. And one of the reasons that when I wrote the new credit line as part of my agreement with DC Comics, I included Trevor, and the official credit line is "created by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden," and that was meant to be ambiguous. As Trevor knows, I do not consider him a co-creator of Black Lightning. I consider him the primary designer of the costume, but there's no getting around the fact that elements of that costume were designed by Bob Rozakis, Joe Orlando, and myself. So he's not the sole designer of the costume. But knowing that Trevor had sprained his wrist recently, and I had just received a check from DC—and I won't go into what that check covers, because that's between me and DC Comics, just as it should have been between Trevor Von Eeden and DC Comics—but the fact of the matter is, the characterization that that check was my payment for my participation in the TV show, is erroneous. And although I got a rather snarky little note from Rich Johnston telling me that Trevor had every right to share the check with them, which, again, I think was irresponsible of Trevor to do that and for Bleeding Cool to publish it, the fact of the matter is that if they had characterized their story as "this is what Trevor got paid," they still would have been wrong, okay, they still would have been wrong, but it wouldn't have involved me. But the various headlines said "this is what the creators of Black Lightning got." And as the creator of Black Lightning, I can tell you that from the headline on, that's erroneous.
When all was said and done for the day, Isabella wrote:
But he returned the following afternoon to explain how he would write the series himself, as well as to point out that a DC executive agreed with him that the series is "out of character."
As for Batman and the Outsiders writer Bryan Hill, he seems to be taking it in stride:
Batman and the Outsiders #1 is in stores now.
Batman and the Outsiders #1
(W) Bryan Hill (A) Dexter Soy (CA) Tyler Kirkham
When the quest for justice drives Batman into some morally ambiguous areas, he calls in the most moral man he knows: Jefferson Pierce, a.k.a. Black Lightning, and his team of operatives known as the Outsiders!
Several years ago Batman personally put the Barrera family into hiding after they suffered through terrible experiments at the hands of an organization called the Ark. Now all but one of them have turned up dead…and Batman needs to locate Sofia Barrera before the wrong people get their hands on her-and her surprising power! But it wouldn't be Batman without a hidden agenda, would it? And when Black Lightning, Katana, the Signal and Orphan find out what Batman is really up to, their every loyalty will be called into question.
In Shops: May 08, 2019