English: Writer Brian Michael Bendis at a book signing at Midtown Comics Times Square in Manhattan, June 21, 2010. Photo by Luigi Novi. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
In a move that has caused waves among comic news reporters and commentators, Brian Michael Bendis, one of Marvel’s biggest names, has signed an exclusive contract with DC Comics. This is a bigger deal than you realize. Bendis is one of their most recognizable names. Through all his faults he also have a lot of strengths. This is the man who brought us Ultimate Spider-Man, kicking off the Ultimate Universe, and Miles Morales, an original Spider-Man in that universe who is now one of their most popular new characters, even appearing in the last two Spider-Man cartoons, including the current one. You have to wonder what Marvel did to lose this name at a time when many of their creator have been as controversial for their origins (novel writers rather than actual comic writers, and some of those writers may not even been comic fans) as they are their political writings within their comics.
Of course there’s a lot of speculation as to why Bendis would leave the company that made him famous. It’s not the first time in comics history, mind you. Jack Kirby, Len Wein, Gerry Conway, John Ostrander, Dan Jurgens, Roger Stern, and even recently John Romita Jr., have switched sides and sometimes even gone back to Marvel. It’s the nature of the business. Sometimes there are reasons, usually financial or creative, for someone to go to their rival. However, this move may really hurt Marvel Comics in the long run, if not the short run.