When Dan DiDio Was Going To Put Mark Waid In Charge Of DC Comics

From an interview between Tom Spurgeon and Mark Waid, talking about working as an editor at DC Comics  under executive editor Dick Giordano;

I was actually offered this job about four or five years ago at DC. Dan for a while wanted to move on to a different part of the company. He invited me to take the job, and I went up there and had serious negotiations. We talked about it. Unfortunately, it fell through on some counts that had nothing to do with me. For that week I thought that was the next step of my career? Tom, I felt ten feet tall every day. I really felt like, “Man, this is it. I’ve been watching the Yankees since I was six and I’m finally on the mound, pitching.” Not because I felt, “Everything is broke and I have to fix it.” Or “Oh boy, I get to play with all of these fabulous toys.” It wasn’t quite that simple. It was more of a sense of having gotten to a point where I’m almost as good a teacher as I am a writer. I yearn to be able to work with younger creators and pass along what I know. That doesn’t mean I have all the right answers, and doesn’t mean I’m necessarily going to teach the right things. I’m going to be wrong in a lot of my philosophy, too. That’s just the way it is. I enjoy that part of the job. I would have enjoyed the idea of sitting down with that stable of characters and that stable of writers and having a meaningful dialogue about here’s what I think you’re trying to do, and here’s how I might be able to help you accomplish that. I think I have enough experience under my belt that you can take my suggestions seriously.

A DC Comics run by Mark Waid would have been an interesting beast. He might have let himself write Superman as a treat. Grant Morrison would probably got more of his pitches though. And there would probably have been less JMS.

In 2008, Waid was editor-in-chief at Boom!, and was saying the likes of “I go through periods, genuinely inexplicable to me, where I’m dead to DC. It always cycles back around.” By 2009 he was telling us, about 52 edited by Steve Wacker;

The biggest challenge was actually, wisely, kept from us by Steve. EIC Dan Didio, who first championed the concept, hated what we were doing. H-A-T-E-D 52. Would storm up and down the halls telling everyone how much he hated it. And Steve, God bless him, kept us out of the loop on that particular drama. Siglain, having less seniority, was less able to do so, and there’s one issue of 52 near the end that was written almost totally by Dan and Keith Giffen because none of the writers could plot it to Dan’s satisfaction. Which was and is his prerogative as EIC, but man, there’s little more demoralizing than taking the ball down to the one-yard line and then being benched by the guy who kept referring to COUNTDOWN as ‘52 done right.’

Bob Harras as the current Editor-In-Chief is probably keeping that situation the way it is. So what do you think a 2013 DC would look like if Mark Waid had been in charge for five years?

Bleeding Cool's coverage of San Diego Comic Con 2015 is brought to you by Valiant's BOOK OF DEATH #1 – in stores July 15th. Visit ValiantUniverse.com for more information.

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