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Official: New DC Human Target title to feature the Justice League International

Human Target
(Image credit: DC)

Update: Tom King and Greg Smallwood's new Black Label DC title Human Target will debut in November, kicking off its 12-issue run, the publisher has officially announced.

According to DC, Human Target will be King's latest series to show off his "magic touch when it comes to plumbing the depths of the DC Universe and reimagining characters for a new generation of fans."

On November 2, Human Target #1 will go on sale, which DC calls "the DC Universe meets gritty detective noir," creating "a new legacy for DC's deadliest bodyguard."

And as Newsarama previously reported (see below) the late '80s era Justice League International will seemingly play a role. 

DC isn't saying how exactly, but the artwork they just released features a new take on the team in its iconic pre-selfie pose. Maybe it has something to do with Lex Luthor. 

"Christopher Chance has made a living out of being a human target—a man hired to disguise himself as his client to invite would-be assassins to attempt his murder," reads the details DC did share. "He's had a remarkable career until his latest case protecting Lex Luthor when things go sideways. An assassination attempt Chance didn't see coming leaves him vulnerable and left trying to solve his own he has 12 days to discover just who in the DCU hated Luthor enough to want him dead."

Covers to the debut issue will be illustrated by Smallwood, Trevor Hairsine, Danny Miki, and Jenny Frison. Check out the other series preview images DC released in our gallery:

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Human Target

(Image credit: DC)
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Human Target

(Image credit: DC)
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Human Target

(Image credit: DC)
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Human Target

(Image credit: DC)

Original story follows

The Human Target is returning to DC.

Writer Tom King has confirmed Newsarama reporting that he and artist Greg Smallwood would be collaborating on a new Black Label Human Target title for DC, further verifying the title will star Christopher Chance along with posting the cover.

"This Fall.

"Christopher Chance, The Human Target, wants to make something of it," reads King's latest tweet.

The writer earlier tweeted just a portion of the same cover showing the superhero arms but without any other information.

(Image credit: DC)

While there have been two characters that have gone by the title the Human Target in DC comics history, the new King-Smallwood title will star the second - Christopher Chance.

Created by the comic book brand names Len Wein, Carmine Infantino, and Dick Giordano in 1972, the character first appeared in Action Comics #419 as a backup story 'The Assassin-Express Contract.'

Most of his early appearances were in backup stories in Action Comics, The Brave and the Bold, and Detective Comics, and guest appearances. 

Inspired by witnessing his own father's murder when he was a boy, Chance is a private investigator, and sort-of bodyguard who as opposed to protecting individuals in danger of more powerful criminals and killers, disguises himself as his clients and assumes their identity to even the odds. 

The concept has inspired two TV series - a short-lived 1992 ABC series starring post-'Jesse's Girl' Rick Springfield and then a 2010 Fox series starring Mark Valley that aired for two seasons.

The character has also appeared a couple of times in the fifth and sixth seasons of the WB's Arrow played by actor Wil Travel, sometimes coming to the aid of Green Arrow's team. 

Writer Peter Milligan adapted the character for a 1999 Vertigo Human Target limited series, which was followed by a graphic novel Human Target: The Final Cut, and another Vertigo Human Target series that lasted 21 issues. 

Another DC Comics' Human Target series written by co-creator Len Wein was published to coincide with the 2010 TV series. 

And yes, while King has not confirmed the meaning of the arms in the cover, Newsarama understands there will be some connection in the title to the late '80s Justice League International era by J. M. DeMatteis, Keith Giffen, Kevin Maguire as many heroes represented in the image were part of that era.

Newsarama will report more details as they become available. 

Speaking of DC's former mature readers' imprint, Newsarama looks at 10 Vertigo comic books that defined the era.

I'm not just the Newsarama founder and editor-in-chief, I'm also a reader. And that reference is just a little bit older than the beginning of my Newsarama journey. I founded what would become the comic book news site in 1996, and except for a brief sojourn at Marvel Comics as its marketing and communications manager in 2003, I've been writing about new comic book titles, creative changes, and occasionally offering my perspective on important industry events and developments for the 25 years since. Despite many changes to Newsarama, my passion for the medium of comic books and the characters makes the last quarter-century (it's crazy to see that in writing) time spent doing what I love most.