AUTHOR PROFILES: Geoff Johns

AUTHOR PROFILES: Geoff Johns

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Name: Geoff Johns

DOB: January 25, 1973 in Detroit, Michigan

Education: Graduated from Clarkson High School in 1991; Studied media arts, screenwriting, film production and film theory at Michigan State University, graduating in 1995.

Awards and Recognition

2002 Wizard Fan Award for Breakout Talent (for The Flash)

2005 Wizard Fan Award for Best Writer (for The Flash, Infinite Crisis, Green Lantern & Teen Titans)

2006 Wizard Fan Award for Best Writer (for Infinite Crisis)

2008 Project Fanboy Award for Best Writer

2009 Project Fanboy Award for Best Writer

2009 Spike TV Scream Award for Best Comic Book Writer

2010 Spike TV Scream Award for Best Comic Book Writer (for Blackest Night, Brightest Day, The Flash and Green Lantern)

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Geoff Johns, the son of Barbara and Fred Johns, grew up in the suburbs of Grosse Point and Clarkson. He is of Lebanese descent. As a child, Johns and his brother first discovered comics through an old box of comics they found in their grandmother’s attic, which included copies of The Flash, Superman, Green Lantern, and Batman from the 1960s and 1970s. Geoff Johns eventually began to patronize a comics shop in Traverse City, recalling that the first new comics he bought were Crisis on Infinite Earth #3 or 4 and The Flash #348 or 349, as The Flash was his favorite character – Johns now owns every issue of The Flash. As Johns continued collecting comics, he gravitated toward DC Comics and later Vertigo. He credits reading James Robinson’s The Golden Age as the book responsible for his love for the characters in that book, and for his decision to accept writing duties on JSA years later.

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After graduating from Michigan State in 1995 Geoff Johns moved to Los Angeles, California. In Los Angeles, Johns cold-called the office of director Richard Donner looking for an internship, and while Johns was being transferred to various people, Donner picked up the phone by accident, leading to a conversation and the internship. Johns started off copying scripts, and after about two months, was hired as a production assistant for Donner, whom Johns regards as his mentor. While working on production of Donner’s 1997 film Conspiracy Theory, Johns visited New York City, where he met DC Comics personnel such as Eddie Berganza, reigniting his childhood interest in comics. Berganza invited Johns to tour the DC Comics offices, and offered Johns the opportunity to suggest ideas, which led to Johns pitching Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E., a series based on the second Star-Spangled Kid and her stepfather, to editor Chuck Kim a year later. Johns expected to write comics “on the side”, until he met David Goyer and James Robinson, who were working on JSA. After looking at Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E., Robinson offered Johns co-writing duties on JSA in 2000, and Johns credits both him and Mike Carlin with shepherding him into the comics industry. That same year, Johns became the regular writer on The Flash ongoing series with issue #164. John’s work on The Flash represents one example of his modeling of various elements in his stories after aspects of his birth town, explaining, “When I wrote The Flash, I turned Keystone City into Detroit, made it a car town. I make a lot of my characters from Detroit. I think self-made, blue-collar heroes represent Detroit. Wally West’s Flash was like that. I took the inspiration of the city and the people there and used it in the books.”John’s Flash run concluded with #225.

<> at Mid Town Comics on August 30, 2011 in New York City.

He co-wrote a Beast Boy limited series with Ben Raab in 2000 and crafted the “Return to Krypton” story arc in the Superman titles with Pasqual Ferry in 2002. After writing The Avengers vol. 3 #57-76 (Oct. 2002-Feb. 2004) and Avengers Icons: The Vision #1-4 (Oct. 2002-Jan. 2003) for Marvel Comics, Johns oversaw the re-launch of Hawkman and Teen Titans. Johns was responsible for the return of Hal Jordan in 2005 as the writer of the Green Lantern: Rebirth mini-series and subsequent Green Lantern ongoing title. Johns was the writer of the Infinite Crisis crossover limited series (Dec. 2005 – June 2006), a sequel to 1985’s Crisis on Infinite Earths. Following this, Johns was one of four writers, with Mark Waid, Grant Morrison, and Greg Rucka, on the 2006-2007 weekly series 52. In 2006, Johns and Kurt Busiek co-wrote the “Up, Up and Away!” story arc in Superman and Action Comics. He then reunited with Richard Donner on the “Last Son” storyline in Action Comics with Donner co-plotting the series with his former assistant. The Justice Society of America series by Johns and artist Dale Eaglesham began in February 2007 and six months later, he and Jeff Katz launched the new Booster Gold series. That same year, Johns helmed the critically acclaimed “Sinestro Corps War” storyline in the Green Lantern titles.He wrote the “Final Crisis” one-shot Rage of the Red Lanterns with artist Shane Davis and collaborated with Gary Frank on Action Comics.Johns and Frank produced the “Brainiac” storyline in which Superman’s adopted father Jonathan Kent was killed and retold Superman’s origin story in 2009’s Superman: Secret Origin. Also in 2009, Johns teamed with artist Ethan Van Sciver on The Flash: Rebirth miniseries, which centered on the return of Barry Allen as the Flash and wrote the Blackest Night limited series.Commenting on Johns’ creation of such concepts as the Blue Lantern Corps, the Red Lantern Corps, and the Indigo Tribe, DC Comics writer and executive Paul Levitz noted in 2010 that “One of Johns’ sharpest additions to DC mythology is the notion that the Green Lanterns are but one color within a rainbow spectrum, and that the other hues have their own champions. Folding in old concepts and inventing new ones, Johns has established limitless story possibilities.” Johns is also the principal writer of the DC Universe Online massively multiplayer online role-playing game.

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Johns was named DC Comics’ new Chief Creative Officer on February 18, 2010 by DC Entertainment President Diane Nelson. a position that Johns stated would not affect his writing. He then co-wrote the Brightest Day series with Peter Tomasi. In September 2011, following the conclusion of Johns’ mini series, Flashpoint, and the crossover storyline of the same name, DC Comics instituted a program called The New 52, in which the publisher cancelled all of its superhero titles and relaunched 52 new series with #1 issues, wiping out most of the then-current continuity. Johns and artist Jim Lee, DC Comics’ Co-Publisher, launched the line with a new Justice League series, written and illustrated by Johns and Lee, respectively. The series’ first story arc was a new origin of the Justice League, which depicted the return of DC’s primary superheroes to the team. Johns’ contributions to The New 52 includes an ongoing Shazam! backup feature in Justice League that began with issue #7, as well as the relaunched Aquaman and Green Lantern monthly titles.

Johns and Gary Frank collaborated on the Batman: Earth One graphic novel, an out of continuity story, released in mid-2012, which served as the first in a series of graphic novels intended to redefine Batman. In 2013, after writing Green Lantern for nine years, Johns ended his run with issue 20 of the New 52 series, which was released May 22, 2013. DC Comics’ All Access webcast announced on February 4, 2014 that Johns would be writing the Superman series which would be drawn by John Romita Jr. The Johns/Romita Jr. team was joined by inker Klaus Janson. In July 2016, Warner Bros. confirmed that Johns was promoted to president of DC Entertainment while still retaining his position as chief creative officer and reporting to Nelson.

Reading Recommendations

The first 4 volumes of Aquaman. It’s a lot I know. But they are phenomenally written and expertly drawn masterpieces. Geoff Johns made Aquaman cool again!

Vol. 1: The Trench, Vol. 2: The Others, Vol. 3: Throne of Atlantis, Vol. 4: Death of a King

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Blackest Night was hands down one of the greatest crossover events to ever come out of the DC universe. Geoff Johns expanded the whole Green Lantern mythos into a great big universe.

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Flashpoint and it’s companion “World of Flashpoint” stories were amazing. In fact, Flashpoint is what kicked off the New 52 – the current DC continuity!

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And last but not least, Infinite Crisis. This is the event that stole my heart for Geoff Johns. This event was THE best event in DC history. At least in my opinion. Its broad scope, intense action and entrancing storytelling are quite an experience, In fact, I challenge any non-DC fans out there to read this event and NOT become a DC fan. It’s impossible. It’s just too awesome!

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Edited and Arranged By: Michael Nunneley

Sources include: Wiki

Support these comic book charities. It’s a great way to give back to the comics community we know and love.

The Hero Initiative.

https://www.heroinitiative.org/

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Comic Book Legal Defense Fund

http://cbldf.org/

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