Firing Or Resignation Of The Year – The 14th Annual Rumour Awards

Were they pushed or did they quit? Whatever the circumstances, they've gone, moved on. Who's departure made the most impact in comic books?

wackerSome were internal. Steve Wacker departed Marvel Publishing for Marvel Animation, confirmed this year but announced on Bleeding Cool at the end of last. CB Cebulski also left Marvel Publishing for a promotion in Business Affairs.

Marvel associate editor Ellie Pyle moved to DC/Vertigo as the musical chairs games continued.

Gail Simone left Batgirl as a result, it seems, of conflict with editor Katie Kubert. But Kubert also left DC Comics for Marvel Comics, leaving Simone realising she could have stayed after all. Paul Levitz, once president and publisher of DC Comics, walked off the Earth 2 weekly comic World's End, as a result of similar disagreements. Justin Jordan left Green Lantern: New Guardians because he felt he was done, and his Luther Strode artist Tradd Moore left Ghost Rider to work more on their creator owned title. and Jon Layman walked off Batman Eternal a few issues in as his schedule was suddenly full of TV Chew. While, in the opposite direction, Brian K Vaughan quit his TV show Under The Dome to concentrate on his comics.

As far as hiring goes, Tom DeFalco was brought on to edit Convergence in the summer, before being dropped and replaced by Marie Javins – something still not confirmed six months on. And Scott Lobdell found his solo writing gig on the weekly title reduced to something akin to "plot" …

There was Jennifer Williams, allegedly fired from a comic store after raising concerns regarding sexual harassment, though Harrison's of Salem countered with their own narrative. We were left to draw our own conclusions as the story hit the local news.

As we were with Roc Upchurch, who left his creator owned title Rat Queens as a result of our investigation into charges made against him of assaulting his ex-wife.

There was Bill Purcell, who claimed he was part of San Diego Comic Con while making physically threatening tweets to guests of the show – and then told everyone he had quit.

But the winner had to be DC Comics as a whole. Diane Nelson's decision to move DC Comics lock, stock and two smoking portfolios from New York to Burbank will have the biggest impact in the US comic industry bar none. Not only have most employees chosen not to join DC in the trip westwards (and provided Marvel, Valiant, Dynamite, Karen Berger/Judith Regan and more with plenty of new employees to choose from) but their presence on the west coast has given employees at IDW, Boom and Image plenty of opportunity when it comes to contract renewals, with rising employee costs as a result. DC editor Kyle Andrukiewicz moved to Valiant as well as Marvel editor Tom Brennan, while Marvel editor

Significant departures include Bob Wayne, who gave an emotional goodbye to retailers at San Diego Comic Con after twenty-eight years at the publisher. Will Dennis who has spent plenty of time at comic cons schmoozing future plans. But the most significant was not a departure at all. Superman editor Anthony Marques uniquely quit DC to… draw a Dark Horse comic. And Mike Marts left as Batman editor to become Marvel Executive Editor of the Xbooks.

Mark Doyle, promoted to Batbooks editor to keep Scott Snyder on board Batman, and who has reinvented the Batline as a result, gets prime position for neither resigning nor being fired, but staying in the job and moving his family from coast to coast. Which also led to his wife, and Marvel editor and CB's recent replacement as Talent Manager, Jeanine Schaefer, choosing to resign from Marvel Comics in the spring

You will also have read about all these departures, firings and quittings first on Bleeding Cool. I get the feeling, with Burbank burgeoning, that there will be plenty more to report in the next few months…

  • About Rich Johnston

    Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.

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