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The future of the planet depends on the superheroes of the past — that’s the high concept behind Dynamite Entertainment’s upcoming revival of its Project Superpowers series, which features classic superheroes from the World War II era brought into the present day.
The new series, which launches with a 10-cent special issue, comes from writer Rob Williams (DC’s Suicide Squad and Unfollow, as well as 2000 AD’s Judge Dredd) and artist Sergio Davila (DC’s Injustice), and sees a return to concepts established 10 years ago by artist Alex Ross and writer Jim Krueger in Dynamite’s original Project Superpowers series; most recently, the title was used for an alternate-world take by writer Warren Ellis in 2015.
“In our new #0 you’ll see we’re introducing the new world via The (Death Defying) Devil and Green Lama,” Williams explained in a statement from the publisher. “We’ll flash back to introduce new readers to the team’s World War II origins and how they were brought to the present via imprisonment in Pandora’s box. And then it’s introducing a brand-new threat. One not so rooted in their history. The main players, which include The Black Terror, The Scarab, Masquerade, are going to have to form a new incarnation of the team. And The Spirit of the American Flag is hovering, watching, judging. … A new host is going to be taken.”
What makes Project Superpowers particularly interesting is that the characters aren’t contemporary creations aping period styles; heroes like the Green Lama, Black Terror and Masquerade were originally created in the 1940s by a number of different publishers, including Fox Comics and Nedor Comics, and currently exist in the public domain.
The first incarnation of Project Superpowers lasted two core series, as well as a number of individual miniseries spotlighting individual characters. The concept was later resurrected by Ellis in 2015, and most recently by Ryan Browne and Pete Woods last year, both of which used the characters outside of the framework created in the original series.
The new Project Superpowers series will begin in July.