Superman, Milestone and Wildstorm

Superman, Wildstorm & Milestone Characters

WOW!!! I just got finished reading articles on Ownership and Rights to characters like Superman, and Milestone Characters. Now suddenly Im starting to understand some of the poor decisions DC has made of the past two years. From their choices of changing Superman, not using as many Wildstorm characters and to barely using any MIlestone Characters.

This all stems from DC's loss of partial rights of Superman. That unless settled with the Siegel Heirs, they will lose the use of much of Superman's origin in 2013. Such as his origin from rocketing off of the planet Krypton, Krypton exploding, Smallville, his Parents, Clark Kent identity, and even Lois Lane. So now I can understand the reasons for Ma and Pa Kent being dead if they can no longer use Smallville. The change to the Daily Planet and Superman not being with Lois. Because they can only use these properties until a certain date 2013. After that DC's hands are tied. Superman is becoming a different character in the New 52, and now I can see why. That it is to create and protect a form of Superman in the DC universe.

What got me looking into the Rights of DC characters, was the rumor that DC maybe losing the rights to the Milestone characters. With all the legal trouble they have received from the Siegel Estate, I can understand them not wanting to use other acquired properties such as Milestone and Wildstorm characters. They are trying to protect themselves from future lawsuits, and an unhappy fan base. If they placed a lot of Milestone characters in the DCnU, then they may have rip them all out of the comics at a later date. Causing an uproar among fans. And if they are already losing characters, they dont want to lose fans too.

I am not happy with the Siegel family. They are ripping Superman in half, for their own selfish causes. It was their father who helped create the character NOT THEM, and he was paid for the character. Through their actions, they may have caused a ripple affect that has left the DC universe weaker. Imagine if DC was not scared of lawsuits and could use their characters as they see fit. They have acquired many publisher owned characters over the years. Such as Fawcett (Shazam) , Charlton (Blue Beetle & Question), Milestone (Static & Icon), Wildstorm (Mr. Majestic, & Wild C.A.T.S) , and many more. I know, we as fans always say DC doesnt give Writers the creative control they want. But now I understand that even DC is limited by the law. Until I know more about the rights, I will not complain about DC not using Milestone, Wildstorm or any other characters that DC bought the Rights too. My only hope is that all this legal issues can be resolved and we end up with all the characters we know and love.

(Maybe the Milestone thing is rumor, we can only hope)

(* This Article was also created through the help of fellow ComicVine member "Xybernauts")

Thanks Xyber for the Help

28 Comments
28 Comments
Posted by xybernauts

Very interesting article. That makes sense. I thought they were just changing things up exploring new plot lines, but what you said seems to make alot more sense. I don't mind that the Siegel family wants a slice of that money tree pie, though. Wouldn't you do the same if you had the opportunity, I know I would? You could argue that the Seigel family is selfish, but at the same time you can argue why is DC comics and the Time-Warner conglomerate so greedy. But like you I'm also mad because these types of lawsuits discourage DC from using other great characters they own from other properties like Hanna Barbara (which you forgot to mention). Basically, I'm conflicted.

But haven't they been using alot of Milestone and Wildstorm characters (poorly I might add from what I've heard)?

Posted by TitanTempest

@xybernauts: Well I wouldn't mind that the Siegel family got a share. But this was already settled twice before, they have been paid, way too much by now. The only reason they were allowed to sue was because of copyright laws changing. So they get to cheat the system, because of laws that DC had no control over. I don't mind DC being selfish, its a business. It supports a whole ecosystem of workers, and when their selfish with characters it gives us DC fans better stories. Yeah, Im just disappointed with these lawsuits, especially if thats the reason Milestone characters where kept out of the reboot(New 52) for the most part. I don't know about Hanna Barbara lol. I was just speaking for the main DC universe.

They did SUCK Static up!!! but I didn't mind the Wildstorm Characters I think they have done a good job in integrating them into the DCnU. At least they get survive here, while before they were slowly fading off

Posted by cameron83

@TitanTempest: so superman is going to be a totally different character by 2013,wait....can you tell me what is going to happen,because this isn't the first superman lawsuit

Posted by TitanTempest

@cameron83 said:

@TitanTempest: so superman is going to be a totally different character by 2013,wait....can you tell me what is going to happen,because this isn't the first superman lawsuit

Like they can still use him. But they couldn't reference all the stuff I mentioned above. Im thinking they will prob buy the rights back from them but who knows. They can still use all that stuff until the certain date, its just afterwords they cant. Its prob why they are changing stuff and why they trying to pack all his origin in now. So that all the future questions people ask, can just refer back to these beginning volumes

*But Who am I to say what they are and are not doing????

Posted by cameron83

@TitanTempest: however i think DC is finding a way out of this,while still giving us superman

Edited by cameron83

@TitanTempest: but from what DC is doing,It still gives up superman we know and love....but just showing a new leaf,from what i see.But if that is his new costume then I will also be happy.

But like you said they can still buy back rights....and from what I am seeing in the new 52,he is still the same character,and the origins that they are giving are just as good.

Although i still hate the seigels for being Disgusting pretentious morons,who will not receive the benefits of superman when they "claim" him.People (most people) will like the new one (who is still the same character,with just as good/better origins IMO).

Their origin is just the big blue boyscout who people are used to and is a pushover,DC's will be better.And are they losing rights to wildstorm characters,oh well,doesn't matter (they aren't significant,only knockoff characters mostly besides static,and i think black lightning is better,but if their are new origins,I know I know i will most likely like the new origins better,and he still is the same character.The origins would be just as good and even better than that generic crap people are used to.)

Posted by name_already_chosen

@TitanTempest: Could you tell me the articles/sites where you found this out? I don't doubt you -- I just haven't been able to find it myself (which means it's probably in a very obvious place that I'm somehow overlooking by overcomplicating things!), and I would like to read more about this myself and perhaps bring it to the attention of my students.

Posted by TitanTempest

@cameron83: What they can still use is, his Armor, but he could never go back to the blue leotard. They can use kryptonite, Lex Luthor, his ability to Fly(but he could not leap a building), and anything that DC gave to him through their stories

*This could lead to the creation of Two different Supermen. One owned by DC, and the Other owned by Siegel family (whom they could sell to anybody)

Posted by cameron83

@TitanTempest: YAY,SO STILL THE SAME SUPERMAN..........YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

But DC has the opportunity to give him a better origin then the generic crap (the one people only like because they are use to it,but when someone else buys it,DC will be in an akward position).

So this is the time to give him a better origin (that is not only just as good,but even beter.And from what I see I can safely say that,atleast for me.Thank you for this article,and hopefully others can see it before they say DC is changing the superman they love.The pushover boyscout with the crappy,generic origin).This new superman I know for a fact i love,and has a better origin.But what of lois lane and jimmy olsen

Posted by TitanTempest

@cameron83: Well they prob wont change his origin because they are already telling it in the New 52. But they just wont reference it. Jimmy Olsen is there to stay, but I think Lois would be owned by the Siegel's.

But yeah it would be weird to see somebody like Marvel owning Superman. He wouldnt be like this Superman, but he would still be Superman. And thats just crazy talk haha

Edited by cameron83

@TitanTempest: OH,so we can still see him the same as he is,just won't be mentioned,no harm done then...thanks alot for the info and reassurance.I almost lost my mind,especially for my friend because he loves superman (and DC and so do I).But the origin is good,but the original one was just that he rocketed here when he was a baby,krypton exploded,etc...DC added so much more to superman,rather than that bland one.

What can they do to save lois though.Give her powers (nah,IDK,but we can see).But what happens to Milestone characters....wait,can you give me the other details from your article.Thanks again for the reassurance of my favorite (well actually batman is) character...

Posted by TitanTempest

@cameron83: Now this is all just Speculation, I have no inside info. Just rumors that were going around the internet and small excepts from the legal cases that people can get there hands on. We will never know what goes on behind closed doors at huge companies. But I just thought it would be interesting to share "What could be going on?"

- Hopefully this article is Dumb and everything will be ok this time next year I for one sure hope so!!!

Posted by name_already_chosen

@cameron83: Actually, there have been both articles and books written which (among other things) praise the innovation and creativity of Superman's origin story. To this day, Kal-El's origin as an infant rocketed from a doomed planet to become a superhero/savior of Earth (with all its mythic resonances and its parallels with both Moses and Jesus) is considered one of the best superhero origins around by the experts. So I am surprised by your argument.

Edited by turoksonofstone

@TitanTempest: Superman rights revert to heirs in October-November 2013.

I for one cannot wait. Milestone was a joint venture between DC/Milestone during the height of the Creators rights explosion and the creators of Milestone may have wisely taken precautions to protect the properties from being wholly owned by DC. While this may seem bad it is actually good!! The characters may have a chance to shine if they can be removed from DC's control, Superman and the Milestone characters both. Marvel has a similar situation with the Ultraverse characters and must pay the creators to use them despite having 50% ownership, this is why you don't see awesome characters like Rune and Prime being used at Marvel. I actually explained all this last year or the year before but everyone was in denial. snicker. You may see Smallville/Kents/the REAL Superman etc. in late 2013 early 2014 from a publisher other than DC or Time Warner might wise up add six zeroes to the $135.00 they paid for Superman and get to keep him. Either way the good guys win.

Edited by turoksonofstone

I'm pretty sure DC purchased the Wildstorm properties from Lee and completely owns them outright. They are safe. DC though should stop fronting like they own the Quality characters though since they actually only own Plastic Man and Blackhawk with the rest of them being Public Domain. Blue Beetle(Original not DC versions), Marvel Family(not Black Adam though) all Public Domain. They should stop hoarding characters and work on the remaining Icons they actually do own....and Marvel too had better watch it's back I hear the Jack Kirby heirs are also ready for another go-round. lol

Posted by Twentyfive

What I want to know is that if these people gain their rights back, what will they do with the characters? I don't see anything happening to Superman after DC loses his rights (heaven forbid that though). I just see it as people wanting to claim the most popular character in the world for themselves.

Same thing with Milestone. DC was the company that brought Static to people's televisions a decade ago. They also brought Milestone characters to Young Justice. If they gain their rights back, I doubt there will be any chance of seeing them at all. Where will the financial backing come from?

Posted by TitanTempest

@turoksonofstone: But I like the Milestone characters at DC. I think The New 52, reminded DC how much people want to see these characters. If they didnt use them, because of a legal issue, thats pretty sad. I love the idea of Superman, Icon, Mr. Majestic and Shazam all living in the same universe. They are four characters that have similar skill sets, but that are divided by their own personalities. If the rights go back to the heirs, then they will most likely fade away. The comic marked is fluctuating right now, and this could leave Milestone characters in a big bind. As far as Superman being reverted back. He wont be the Superman we love, He will only have his origin story. What is a Superman character without Lex Luthor, Jimmy Olsen, and YEESH!! Kryptonite. I would rather the characters stay at DC, to be utilized as Fan demand rises ( And a $135 back then was good money, for a character. They would not been able to grow and expand on him like DC did, for a character they didnt have to put any risk into. DC later paid them more through royalties and stuff, so I dont see DC as a evil corporation against two young writers)

@Twentyfive: Like Twentyfive said. They are starting to use Milestone characters within Young Justice. This is just a small step in the right direction. I mean did you ever think, Swamp Thing and Animal Man would ever be a huge hit like this. Maybe they are waiting for the right time with the right writer, that will cause these characters to "Rocket" haha off. Im hoping DC

Posted by turoksonofstone

@Twentyfive said:

What I want to know is that if these people gain their rights back, what will they do with the characters? I don't see anything happening to Superman after DC loses his rights (heaven forbid that though). I just see it as people wanting to claim the most popular character in the world for themselves.

Same thing with Milestone. DC was the company that brought Static to people's televisions a decade ago. They also brought Milestone characters to Young Justice. If they gain their rights back, I doubt there will be any chance of seeing them at all. Where will the financial backing come from?

If the heirs fully recover Superman, he could end up at Image, Dark Horse, or Marvel as a licensed property or they could build an all new Comic Universe around him. Milestone the same thing though I doubt demand would be as high as for Superman. Lex Luthor? Superman would be fine without his classic tropes pretty sure DC fans are accepting the character as he is now so They should have no problem accepting the Golden Age version when he comes back.The heirs version would be more similar to pre-DCNU version. lol Jimmy Olsen is was and always will be a lame concept. This could be the best thing that has ever happened to the Superman property.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous
@TitanTempest: um, they'v been using a lot of WIldstorm characters 
Posted by Twentyfive

@turoksonofstone: Cool. Thank you for the comment. I did not know some of those things. I don't want Superman to go. He belongs in the same Universe as the other most famous hero, Batman.

Posted by Twentyfive

@TitanTempest: Thanks for the words. On the topic of Milestone; I never really saw their appearance in YJ as a result of legal issues. If that is the case, then this might be a good thing either way, because we get to have our favorite characters appear under one publisher or another. Eventually.

Rocket is getting married in the YJ-verse. I wonder to whom, and I am excited to find out.

Posted by TitanTempest

@turoksonofstone: But the problem is they wont get all of Superman, they are only getting what Siegel and Shuster created. So just his original works. So they cant get anything DC created like, some of his powers, Lex Luthor (and every other villain he has ever faced Braniac, Bizarro, Zod, Mxyzptlk, Doomsday,ect ), Kryptonite, and all the history. They wont have the Superman we know, but the Superman that was created in 1938. Unless they bought him from DC, and we know thats not going to happen lol. Im sorry but I think this would be the worst thing to happen to Superman.

@Jonny_Anonymous: lol I know they have been using Wildstorm characters, but they dont want to bring them to the forefront. Like Mr. Majestic, he would be great to add as one of the leading characters, but they dont them to over shadow Superman and other DC characters. I love that they created a Team 7. And I cant wait for a Wild C.A.T.S book, maybe a Gen 13. :-)

@Twentyfive: I agree, I want Superman in the DC. And I hope your right, I hope Milestone characters will grow, even though Id prefer them with DC. I loved JLA: When Worlds Collide volume, and Im hoping for a future when that will happen again

Edited by TitanTempest

Well looks like it may not come to pass now. DC may be keeping Superman safe. Babs just wrote a article about the Shuster court ruling today >>>>> http://www.comicvine.com/superman/29-1807/warner-brothers-wins-court-ruling-in-rights-to-superman-case/92-704347/#4

Though the Siegel Estate, may still cause trouble. But because of the ruling on Shuster, DC may have more favor in the next court appearance

Posted by Black_Claw

Now we'll have to see if the rumors of DC losing milestone are true or not.

Posted by TitanTempest

@Black_Claw said:

Now we'll have to see if the rumors of DC losing milestone are true or not.

Man, I hope not Claw. That would suck, I want Milestone to come out with a bang in DC and Stay >_<

Posted by Black_Claw

Same here, I really want Static and Icon to be A listers in DC. They just need good creative teams.

Posted by RazzaTazz

Nice blog I will be including it in the community spotlight this week.

Posted by TitanTempest

Late Update: Superman is staying with DC, at least for a good while! Not saying that the Shuster and Seigel heirs wont try again. But fingers crossed!!!