As King understood the situation behind Nightwing, #30, DC decided not to print the original story it had commissioned from James Tynion IV and Meghan Hetrick because executives thought the firm was publishing a lot of elegies lately. They asked Seeley and King to produce a replacement that was less funereal than a story set at, well, a funeral.
Because that issue was already slated to be an extra-long 30 pages, Seeley and King divided their story into three distinct sections that were sent out to three different pencilers: Javier Garrón, Jorge Lucas, and Mikel Janin. That’s how tight deadlines are met in a collaborative art form.
Looking ahead, DC’s big crossovers continue to do mischief to storytellers’ schedules. King wrote one alternate-future issue that was to be tied into the “Future’s End” event but numbered like a regular Grayson issue. Then the company changed its collective mind, and that will be Grayson: Future’s End, #1. As headaches go, that’s a minor one, and there’s probably serious marketing thought behind DC’s decision. But it’s interesting how such tactics are still being worked out on the fly.
Finally, there’s been a lot of discussion among fans about the fact that Dick Grayson is carrying a gun in his job as a spy. King told me that Grayson, #3 (following that “Future’s End” issue) will have “the gun go off.” As in Anton Chekhov’s playwriting axiom that if we see a gun on stage in Act I, it has to go off by the end of the show. How will Dick’s gun go off? What will be the consequences? That, of course, is part of the story.
In addition, King promised his explanation of why this Dick Grayson chose as Teen Wonder to dress in stoplight colors.