Kevin Smith, filmmaker, comic-store owner and slacker icon, is returning to the world of comic books. He has been announced as the writer for a new Green Hornet comic book series from Dynamite Entertainment. This isn’t Smith’s first involvement with Green Hornet and his sidekick Kato. In 2004 he wrote a script and was in talks to direct the Green Hornet movie, before deciding against it. He will however, use his screenplay as a base for the new Hornet comic series. Alex Ross, David Finch and Jae Lee are on board as cover artists for the first issue, which should hit stores sometime this fall. Smith is also working on a 12-issue Batman story called “The Widening Gyre” drawn by childhood friend and Batman: Cacophony artist Walt Flanigan.
Smith has written several other comics, including critically acclaimed runs on Daredevil and Green Arrow. Yet due to his tendency for chronic lateness, he’s acquired a bit of a reputation with many comic fans. It once took 3 1/2 years for a six-issue series to see the light of day and another was flat out canceled after a single issue and years of waiting. So there’s little argument that this is a deserved reputation. I’ve given him a hard time for it in the past, but he seems to have learned his lesson from past mistakes. He completed all of the scripts for his last Batman story, “Cacophony” before it was even announced.
Late or not, Smith is a talented writer, so I’ll just try to focus on that. Neil Gaiman (as usual) said it best in a recent blog post about “late work” from writers, “People are not machines. Writers and artists aren’t machines…And sometimes, and it’s as true of authors as it is of readers, you have a life…And life is a good thing for a writer. It’s where we get our raw material, for a start. We quite like to stop and watch it. ” It’s tough to be mad at a writer for not producing after reading that.