While talking to Kotaku about DC’s moves into new forms of digital comic storytelling, DC co-publisher Jim Lee was also asked about the current state of creator and editorial relations, something’s that’s been a popular topic on Bleeding Cool recently.
Evan: A lot of readers who were on board with the re-launch feel some of the energy has waned from when the New 52 reboot happened. I personally feel as a reader like a lot of the creative direction is coming from the top down and not more organically from creators themselves. They’ll get a head of steam but then an event is scheduled and stuff gets derailed. Can you talk about that a little bit?
Jim: I can talk a little bit of the perception of that. I would say it’s not necessarily reflective of a reality in that we’re not going to go out and publicly state what’s happening behind the scenes. To me all the coolest products I have done commercially and critically are all products that were collaborations between editors and creators. That’s ultimately how the best stories are produced.
The company has to reserve the right to want to take character in fresh bold directions and I think creators need to reserve the right to tell the stories they want to tell and it’s all about the interplay between that. I’ll tell you some of the most successful comic book runs were instances where there was tension between the creative groups.
It doesn’t always have to be everyone is singing and dancing in step down the yellow brick road. There’s cool things that happen when you pair people unlikely creators together in teams when you have editorial teams challenging the creative teams and vice versa. I would say it’s a little overblown and I can’t really speak to what’s really happening behind the scenes. But I would say that’s one take on it.
I’ve certainly heard that explanation given before regarding DC’s current working practices – and have expressed as much. One proponent of this however, changed their mind once it started happening to them…