The writer of 12 Years a Slave is making a DC comic about marginalized heroes

Some of the most interesting glimpses into superhero universes have taken place from less conventional perspectives, from the gumshoe detectives of Gotham Central to the blue-collar construction workers of Damage Control. This winter, 12 Years a Slave screenwriter John Ridley will reexamine some of the most iconic moments of the DC Comics universe through the personal stories of John Stewart, Extraño, Vixen, Supergirl, Katana and Renee Montoya — all heroes from historically marginalized or underrepresented groups.

The comic book miniseries, titled The Other History of the DC Universe, will focus on “the lives of those behind the costumes, and their endeavors to overcome real-world issues.”

“I could not be more excited by the opportunity to excavate the canon of the DC Universe through a vast array of characters who’ve earned their seat at the table,” says Ridley in the DC press release. “I’m very impressed with DC’s commitment to making their history as reverent and urgent as it is engaging and entertaining for all its many fans.”

Ridley previously wrote a comic called TheAmerican Way for DC, which dealt with a black superhero joining a government-sponsored super-group in the 1960s. He is currently working on a sequel for DC’s Vertigo imprint.

He plans to discuss The Other History of the DC Universe in more detail at a DC in D.C. panel titled “The Many Shades of Heroism: DC Heroes Through the African-American Lens,” which will be streamed on DC’s YouTube channel on January 13th, at 11AM ET.

Image: DC Comics

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