Second Coming , an upcoming Vertigo series by writer Mark Russell and artist Richard Pace, has been cancelled by the publisher ahead of the first issue’s release date. The series, a biblical satire in which God sends Jesus back to Earth to learn how to be a better savior from Sun-Man, the world’s greatest superhero, was one of the first books to be announced as part of the relaunch of the Vertigo imprint. The first two issues had been solicited, with Second Coming #1’s FOC this past Monday and a March 6th scheduled release date.
The series had drawn criticism from conservative groups based on what they cited as a blasphemous premise. News outlets like Fox News and World Religion News covered the announcement of the book, and an online petition to DC/Vertigo to stop the release of the book has received over 200K signatures.
On Twitter, both Russell (whose first issue of DC’s Wonder Twins was released today) and Pace clarified that DC/Vertigo have returned the rights to Second Coming to them, and that the series will eventually see release from another publisher. The: DC/Vertigo’s cancellation of the orders for Second Coming, just so you know, DC did not do anything untoward to me. I asked for the rights back and they gracefully agreed. They’ve been a pleasure to work with and it will still be released, albeit with a different publisher. — Mark Russell (@Manruss) February 13, 2019 So Mark and I requested the rights back and DC is being very kind and generous about this. Stay tuned for further announcements about the series https://t.co/EnXM3C1vH2 — Richard Pace @ECCC & C2E2 03/19 (@rpace) February 13, 2019 The pair also also thanked the Vertigo editorial team for their hard work on the series. Also, re: Second Coming, I want to thank everyone at Vertigo who’s gotten it to the point where it’s as good as it is. Specifically, I want to thank Molly, Maggie, and Mark for all their support and hard work. Wherever it ends up coming out, know that this is still your book. — Mark Russell (@Manruss) February 13, 2019 Wholly agree. Molly was a champ on this, but everyone from Dan Didio and the rest of the Vertigo crew were stellar. https://t.co/vPjKbzDWRk — Richard Pace @ECCC & C2E2 03/19 (@rpace) February 13, 2019 The cancellation of Second Coming is the latest stumbling block for the relaunched Vertigo imprint. In December, the publisher cancelled another of its titles, Border Town , following allegations of sexual assault against the series writer.
No word yet on who will rise to the occasion as new publisher for Second Coming , or when the title will be resurrected. For people like me who were looking forward to reading the series, though, it’s heartening to know that it will still see the light of day eventually.
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