Beatty Takes Over Ruse...
After a tumultuous
year and a half that substantially changed CrossGen Comics' approach
toward creators, Mark Waid has left the building, quitting his last
remaining title, Ruse. Actually, Waid literally left the building
months ago, after growing uncomfortable in his job as writing supervisor
at the Florida-based publisher.
Before that move,
all creators had to work in the CrossGen compound in Tampa exclusively.
This policy caused many writers and artists to uproot from across the
country to take part in the grand experiment of CrossGen founder Mark
Alessi. Waid dropped a high-profile gig writing JLA at DC to
work on Crux, Sigil and his beloved Ruse, as well as oversee
the work others were doing.
At the same time,
CrossGen brought George Perez on board, allowing the artist time away
from his exclusivity clause in order to work on the long-awaited JLA/Avengers
When Waid stepped
down from his behind-the-scenes duties, he, too, was allowed to work
outside of the compound while still telling the adventures of Simon
Archard and Emma Bishop in Ruse. Marvel quickly hired him to
take over Fantastic Four, though his first issue of that title
has yet to ship. Rumors burned hotly that Waid was unhappy at CrossGen,
fanned by the writer's refusal to accept a Harvey nomination for his
work on Ruse.
Both sides denied
any problems, but there was no denying Waid's drifting away. Crux
and Sigil transitioned over to the pen of Chuck Dixon. And now
with issue #13 of Ruse, that title will be written by Scott Beatty,
whom Dixon recommended after working with him on Joker: Last Laugh.
Waid and CrossGen
cite the usual "creative differences." Ruse had always been described
as an equal collaboration among writer and artists. " Since the team
wanted Ruse to go in a different direction than I did, we decided
to part ways," Waid commented. "It's unfortunate, but these things happen
in a dynamic creative environment." He went on to praise Beatty as a
writer he respects. "Obviously, Mark helped to set the bar very high
on RUSE," noted Beatty, repaying the compliment.
Aside from last
fall's Joker cross-over, Beatty has also penned Robin: Year One,
Robin, and several Secret Files for DC. He will begin
work on Batman: Gotham Knights starting with issue #33.
Beatty will work out of his home in Pennsylvania, as CrossGen has him
writing only the one title. Is CrossGen going to become more like the
Big Two, de-centralizing its artistic staff?
As for the future
of Ruse in particular, penciller Butch Guice offered, "the whole
team is excited to welcome Scott Beatty aboard. He comes very highly
regarded by Chuck and others, and from what we've seen so far, the book
won't miss a beat."
Maybe not. But
we're going to miss Waid, and though we'll try to give Beatty the benefit
of the doubt, some of us are still stinging from that Joker thing.
this and more in the Fanboy forums.