Warning: The following contains spoilers for recent issues of Superman: Son of Kal-El and Nightwing, both on sale at DC Comics.
2021 has seen massive changes in the life of one of the comic book world’s most iconic heroes. DC Resident Man of Steel Superman has gone to the stars on a mission of cosmic significance, leaving his half-Kryptonian son Jon Kent to take his place. Since serving in his father’s place, Jon has proven to be a hero for the next generation in his new series, Superman: Son of Kal-El, living up to its new motto “Truth, justice and a better future”. Jon Kent turned out to be bisexual in the famous movie Superman: Son of Kal-El # 5.
CBR had the chance to speak exclusively with the author of Superman: Son of Kal-El, Tom Taylor, on what happened in the life of this new hero. Taylor also teased the next step for Jon Kent in Superman: Son of Kal-El N ° 6, coming out of the comic book stands at the beginning of January. The comic book creator also briefly discussed his current run on DC’s Night wing – which was recently chosen by CBR as the best comic book of 2021 and is now available in a paperback for fans.
CBR: You’re known for writing comics that take place outside of regular continuity, like Injustice, Deceased, and the pursuit Dark Knights of Steel. What are the main differences between undertaking a project like this and writing comics in continuity? Like Superman: Son of Kal-El and Night wing?
Tom Taylor: I think the biggest difference is when you work outside of continuity there is no limit to what you can do. But when you work in continuity, you can’t break the toys. You can’t decide to stab Batman this week. By continuity, you can do things that shock everyone. No one feels safe around my comics (which I enjoy) and the loss feels more permanent.
That said, the settings and limitations you get in the continuity comics are one of the things that make them so fun. Sometimes having an endless web is intimidating, and you can guess yourself a million times. If you’re working in the sequel, you’ve got to find some other way to hurt Batman or make people fear Superman, and that allows the creativity to flow.
What Happens In The Life Of Jon Kent As We Enter Superman: Son of Kal-El # 6?
A little, in fact.
Jon was attacked from everywhere. He was attacked by Henry Bendix on the Isle of Gomorrah, who amplified his powers to a point where he could no longer control them. He saw and heard too much and traveled all over the world running himself to save people. He finds someone who doesn’t need his protection in Jay Nakamura and ends up sharing a kiss with him at the end of Superman: Son of Kal-El # 5, which gets everyone talking.
What can you tell us about the mysterious group of villains that appear in Superman: Son of Kal-El # 6?
The group is linked to the Isle of Gomorrah, led by Henry Bendix, who has a very big project.
We saw a hint at the end of the Superman: Son of Kal-El Annual when Lex Luthor contacted Henry Bendix at the end and said he was on board for something called “The Rising”. Over the next few issues, we’ll see exactly what The Rising is, how much of a threat it poses to the entire DC Universe, and how Jon Kent and Jay are caught in the center of it all.
What made Wildstorm character Henry Bendix the right person to use as a villain in Superman: Son of Kal-El?
I have been a fan of Wildstorm for as long as I can remember. I was a writer on one of their titles, The Authority. I have always been drawn to these characters. We were looking for a nation to center this story around, and the idea for Gomorrah and Bendix came up. We had a generic villain for a while, but we liked the idea of someone who’s an outsider wins an election and becomes a dictator. This is the perfect role for Henry Bendix, given that the Isle of Gomorrah has experimented with people and is known to have created his own overpowered people.
Let’s talk about Night wing. During your run, Dick Grayson came across as very human in a way we’ve never really seen before. He adopted a dog and he does great things with the money he inherited from Alfred after his death. Was it all on your own or was something that happened organically?
A bit of both.
When I came across this book, I said this is how I see Nightwing. Dick Grayson is the most human character in the DC Universe – alongside Superman, Jon, and Clark. He’s the heart of the DC Universe, and I wanted to show how he uses his heart to change his city and the people around him. That’s how I’ve always seen him. I’m not trying to change it in any way.
I think that part of her character was told by people like Devin Grayson when she was working on Knights of Gotham, as well as people like Chuck Dixon, Scott McDaniel, Peter Tomasi, and Kyle Higgins, who really helped put Dick’s voice at the forefront of his character. We have seen what he represents and who he represents. We’re just taking what has already been developed to another level in his first story arc, “Leaping Into the Light,” when he inherits money and uses it to be an even greater force for good. It’s just who he is, not just as a hero but as a person.
Superman: Son of Kal-El # 6 is written by Tom Taylor and with illustrations by John Timms. The issue goes on sale Jan.4 from DC Comics.
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