Shane Davis on Volume 2 of Superman: Earth One

Shane Davis on Volume 2 of Superman: Earth One
Superman: Earth One, a modern day retelling of the Man of Steel's mythos, was a far greater success than anyone expected. Currently writer J. Michael Straczynski and artist Shane Davis are working on volume two. Newsarama caught up with the artist on the subject.
What follows are some excerpts from the interview:

NEWSARAMA: Do you think that this reached people outside the regular comics reading audience? Because it seems the format [a graphic novel] may have attracted a whole new audience.

SHANE DAVIS: Well, that's what I hoped for, going into it. I hope that's the case. I know some places, I was signing copies for nurses and doctors and stuff like that, that were wanting it for themselves. And maybe one out of, I don't know, like 10 people were saying, “This is a gift for my son for Christmas,” or something like that. I've seen it a lot at the Barnes and Nobles and other bookstores, so that's a different audience from regular Superman comics. People are ordering pretty heavy on it, and that's great. How that sustains, especially with more graphic novels continuing, remains to be seen. I really hope it finds its home with the newer audience, because that's really who I wanted to reach.

That was my goal: to reach new readers. I wanted to try to do the character justice, as far as re-envisioning him for today's audience.

But at the same time, I’m kind of surprised how cynical some older Superman fans were of the book. You would think I took away their normal Superman comic book or something. One of the interesting things that a fan had this big debate with me about was, “Where's Lex Luther?” And I’m like, “Well, Lex Luther isn't going to be in the book.” And he's like, “Well, why not? There's always got to be a Lex Luther.” So it's weird when you see those expected stereotypes come at you before the book's even done or printed. And then I kind of knew those people weren't going to be happy.

NEWSARAMA: Are you working on the second volume already?

SHANE DAVIS: Yes. I’m working on it now. I know where the story's going.

NEWSARAMA: Are you approaching the second volume in a different way? Or is it more of a direct continuation of what you did in the first volume?

SHANE DAVIS: It's weird because it is a direct continuation, but at the same time, it's kind of not, because what I have now is I have the Daily Planet Clark Kent. That's really not what I had in Volume 1. Daily Planet Clark Kent didn't step into being until the very end of the book. So in its way, I kind of have a new character that I’m focusing on, but with a lot of the same supporting cast.

NEWSARAMA: Is there anything you can tell us about the story?

SHANE DAVIS: I can tell you that there is going to be a classic Superman villain. And I've worked on some new designs for that, so I’m kind of stoked about that, and I hope fans will be pleased.

NEWSARAMA: Then to finish up, is there anything you want to tell fans about your work on Superman: Earth One?

SHANE DAVIS: Just thanks, and that I hope they like what I'm doing for the next one. I could never have expected the attention we've gotten for the first volume -- all the press. But the real test of its success, I think, isn't today's news. It's going to be the longevity of it – five years, 10 years from now. That's where I, myself, plan to judge the success of this, is where is it 10 years from now? That's my goal in the graphic novel -- not the quick sale, but the long-term sale. The long-term viability of it. So that's where, being the co-creator – my goals are set on that.

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