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DC Comics news: Top brass move to California and a team-up with General Mills

Superheroes and sugary cereal are a dangerous mix!
General Mills

Senior DC Comics brass move west!

Back in November, it was announced that in order to continue the corporate synergy between DC Comics and Warner Brothers' film and TV divisions via the enterprise that is DC Entertainment (run by Diane Nelson), the comic book staff would soon be expected to move to California by 2015 to put all of the DC heads within one area. Now, it stands revealed that among those have been: co-publisher Dan DiDio, editor in chief Bob "Bankruptcy" Harras, "Vertigo" executive editor Shelly Bond, and group editor Editor Berganza.

Not all of DC Comics' upper level editorial figures have been willing or eager to move across the country; some have left DC Comics for other opportunities. Editors Wil Moss and Mike Marts left DC Comics and joined Marvel Comics since December. Alex Segura, former DC Comics executive director of publicity, has been hired by Archie Comics to essentially perform a similar role for their "Red Circle" superhero imprint. Former DC Comics writer, editor, and president Paul Levitz has since been hired as publisher of "BOOM! Studios". On the other hand, co-publisher/top artist Jim Lee and chief creative officer/top writer Geoff Johns have long been based in California.

DC Entertainment organized in 2009, the same year Disney made their announcement of purchasing Marvel Comics, in order to better position the characters and licenses within DC Comics for multi-media projects. Although DC Comics have maintained a presence on TV since then and efforts to expand into the realm of video games have increased since then, their attempt to compete against Marvel Studios in film has seen mixed results at the very best. The past few years, especially since the "New 52" era began in fall 2011, have seen a lot of accusations of editorial chaos by creators who have since fled the company, including Rob Liefield. It will remain to be seen if the situation irons once once all vital positions are next to the L.A. division.

DC Comics teams with General Mills cereals to expose kids to comics!

Children were the primary targets for mainstream comic books for most of their history in America; it has only been since roughly the mid 1980's - ushered in by DC Comics works like "Watchmen" and "The Dark Knight Returns" - that comics have seemed to become too "extreme" or "grown up" to appeal to them in as great a number. While DC Comics makes strides to keep the young involved with comic book tie-ins to various cartoon series and TV shows, as well as "digital first" comics with more upbeat stories to appeal to the tech-savvy ("Batman Beyond", "Smallville", "Batman '66", "Adventures of Superman"). Now, for the first time since 2011, DC Comics has teamed with General Mills cereals to offer free comics in select boxes of certain brands of children's cereal.

Throughout March and April, select boxes of "Cookie Crisp", "Lucky Charms", "Trix", "Reese's Puffs", "Cinnamon Toast Crunch", and "Honey Nut Cheerios" will have one of four comics featuring the "New 52" version of the Justice League in their traditional costumes having "all ages" style adventures. All of the stories offers "part one" of a story, with the second part also offered for free on the main "Big G Cereal Heroes" website. Veteran comic book scribes Joshua Williamson, Dan Jurgens, and Norm Rapmund have all worked on stories which lack the "extreme maturity" of most traditional DC Comics - the crass nudity, shock value violence and obsession with continuity which clogs most "normal" DC Comics. More people (kids especially) eat cereal than read comics, so this is a good way to try to spark more new readers onto the hobby as well as promote reading. One only hopes those "new readers" will be thrilled afterward to try the rest of DC's blood soaked comics for four dollars a pop.

There seems to be a disconnect, quite frankly. Different versions of these characters and their stories are offered in different mediums. TV and film reach more eyes than comics, but even those can be as diverse as "Justice League Unlimited" to "Teen Titans GO!" to "Man of Steel" to the latest Greg Capullo "horror and gore" issue of his Batman run. DC Entertainment wants to forge these all into a whole, and it remains to be seen if their efforts to bring in new readers with one form of their product and then offering them another form of it every Wednesday will bear the fruit they wish it to.

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