So why was there no cover image in Marvel’s March solicitations for Nemesis, the new creator-owned series by Mark Millar and Steve McNiven? Especially when this one had been promoted previously?
Turns out that DC Entertainment didn’t take kindly to the constant references to Batman in the CBR interview with Mark Millar, especially the “What If Batman Was The Joker”, “What if Batman Was A Cunt” mentions by Millar that the CBR message boarder BladeOfTheMortal picked up and ran with.
Anyway, DC people decided that this image was a little too Heath Ledger for their liking. They got in touch. And the legal standing of this sort of thing was made clear.
So, no new cover in time for solicitation. And everyone probably trying to be just a little more careful from now on…
UPDATE: Mark Millar denies the story by confirming it, saying “One of my friends at DC legal dropped me an informal email back in December saying that someone in editorial was a bit worried by the Batman and Joker mentions in an interview to promote a creator-owned book. They politely asked if I could avoid using those names as it was creating a bit of grief for them and I agreed, saying that’s absolutely fine. Steve and I chatted after, wondering if the cover was a little too much too and we decided to ditch it and do another one. It was entirely our decision and a gesture of goodwill, which the lads at DC appreciated. This has never been anything beyond a couple of friendly, informal emails.”