We're always giddy when Marvel or DC announces that an exciting new creator is taking over the writing or art of a favorite character, but there are even more talented creators that the Big Two could be drawing from. Here are just a few of our favorites.
Top image from Brittney Williams' The Daily Planet Files.
Now many of these folks, in addition to producing amazing fan art and fan comics, are successful professional artists in their own right, and they may not have the time or inclination to work for DC or Marvel; we'd just love to see those publishers give the superhero stories and artwork these folks produce a try. And it's certainly nowhere close to a comprehensive list. Please name any artists you think would be a good fit for the Big Two in the comments!
Yale Stewart, in fairness, has been doing some work for both Marvel and DC. He did an extra in Nova #100 looking forward to Nova #1000, and he wrote a series of early reader books featuring members of the Justice League. But what we really want to see is a regular series along the lines of his fan webcomic JL8, imagining the members of the Justice League as kids. Someone please pay him to do this.
Mike Maihack is the creator of the fantastic Cleopatra in Space, and in his spare time, he draws amazingly fun Batgirl/Supergirl comics. They're single-page comics, but we would love to see a full story featuring this pair in Maihack's hands.
Every now and then, we come across a project and ask ourselves, "Why on Earth doesn't this exist as a Big Two comic?" One of those projects is Brittney Williams' The Daily Planet Files, which imagines the day-to-day life of the staff of Metropolis' top newspaper. She's working on a comic version of the idea, and even though we haven't seen the dialogue yet, we're in love with the way she draws Lois Lane.
Marco D'Alfonso is a recurring favorite at Comics Should Be Good's weekly drawing challenges. We're especially fond of his Deadpool/Boba Fett team-up comics. Now that they're owned by the same parent company, this could happen, right? We don't care if it isn't canon.
If Marvel Comics wants to capitalize on the popularity of the Marvel movies, they should look to the webcomic Steve Rogers' American Captain. The creator (who prefers to remain uncredited) explores the emotional relationships between the Marvel movie versions of the Avengers team. It's a relatively quite comic, taking place in the space between adventures, but it has its place in the new, broader world of Marvel entertainment.
The Question and the Birds of Prey get a fun ride in Tattered Remains, a fan comic by writer Valerie Renee and cartoonist Krystal Beisick. You want more female creators working on female characters? Here are two ladies who are doing the job.
Sometimes it just takes the right creator to revive a character or a team that has fallen by the wayside. Copra creator Michel Fiffe put his own spin on DC's Suicide Squad with his fan comic DEATHZONE!, which ComicsAlliance named one of their top comics of 2012. Just look at that artwork.
Edit: My mistake, Fiffe works at Marvel now as a writer on Marvel's All-New Ultimates! Nice.
Bill Walko already lampoons superhero conventions with his webcomic The Hero Business, about a PR firm serving superheroes. While it would be neat if his PR firm could work with real Marvel or DC superheroes (instead of ersatz versions of popular characters), Walko has put his hand to other superhero ideas, such as a revamp of Amethyst: Princess of Gemworld.
Caanan Grall's comic Celadore was actually published under DC's now-defunct Zuda webcomics imprint, and now he makes one of my personal favorite webcomics, Max Overacts. But his art style and incredibly charming dialogue would be perfect for an all-ages or young adult book, and every now and then, he churns out fanart that shows just how delightful his superhero comics would be.
Okay, I don't know if there is any way that DC could possibly snag Aaron Diaz given that he's already very busy with his own webcomic, Dresden Codak. I just know that I'd love to see an Elseworlds comic featuring his rebooted Justice League.
The same goes for Kate Beaton's Wonder Woman.