Thanks to Murray for bringing this to my attention. In his latest 20 Questions column at Newsarama, Dan DiDio says this about the Legion:
6: Going almost hand in hand with continuity – it seems that one would demand the other, a fair number of questions from readers concerned scheduling. It seems that it’s cyclical – it gets on track, falls off track, you give a broad statement about how you’re fixing it, and this time it will stick, it gets on track and then falls off again, and you give another, “This time we really mean it” statement. What’s the deal?
DD: You’re absolutely right. We do everything in our power to keep these books on track. We’re coming off a very big election year, and if I was running for office, I would tell you that every book for 2009 is on schedule, and each book has the creative team that will make it possible. The reality is, we are constantly juggling the schedule based upon the needs of the creative team, and the needs of the schedule, and we are weighting the value of each, and we wait and make choices based upon who’s involved in the process, and how important it is to maintain the schedule and maintain the consistency of the product.
Case in point - Final Crisis. As I mentioned in the last interview, it’s essential for us to have the last issue of Final Crisis come out in the month of January. Therefore, we are moving heaven and earth to make the book come out in the month of January, because so much follows.
Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds has an impact on our line because of the bits that take place at the conclusion of the series, but that impact does not occur until later in the year. So we are less aggressive to holding that particular book’s schedule than we were the lead book in Final Crisis. So therefore, you’re going to see Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds with months skipping in order to complete the story, but Final Crisis will be pushed to make sure it hits as close to its schedule as possible. ...
9: Back towards the subject material of the comics themselves – you mentioned Legion of 3 Worlds, but as we’ve reported, Legion of Super-Heroes ends with issue #50. Can you give any word as to where things are headed for the Legion in 2009? Obviously, in the Legion of 3 Worlds, there is a progression of events that’s suggesting a definite status quo change for the Legion...
DD: Legion of Super-Heroes has been a key franchise to the DC Universe since the ‘60s. It’s appeared in Adventure Comics, Superboy its own series, guest starred in a number of books, they’re going ot be appearing in Smallville very shortly, and have had their own animated television series. To think that after the cancellation of the series with #50 and after the conclusion of Legion of 3 Worlds that we have no plans in place would probably be a mistake.
We’re playing it kind of quiet now because we want Legion of 3 Worlds to play out so people will be excited about the conclusion, and from that conclusion, follow that story to others where those characters may or may not appear.
The bottom line is that Legion of Super-Heroes is a key franchise of the DC Universe, and it will never sit still or quiet for long.
Speaking of the delays, L3W #3 is now scheduled for Jan. 14, 2009 and issue #4 is scheduled for Feb. 25, 2009. Issue #5 has not been solicited yet but should come out sometime before July 2009. (Thanks to Ranse for the tip.) (Update: when I said July I was making a joke. I have no knowledge of when the final issue will come out.)
A couple of key quotes from DiDio I want to repeat and put in boldface:
To think that after the cancellation of the series with #50 and after the conclusion of Legion of 3 Worlds that we have no plans in place would probably be a mistake.
Legion of Super-Heroes is a key franchise of the DC Universe, and it will never sit still or quiet for long.