web stats

CSBG Archive

3/24 – Curious Cat Asks…

What do you think was the best ongoing series canceled due to low sales before 12 issues were published?

We3-5_edited.jpg

138 Comments

Aztek, The Ultimate Man. Definitely.

Dakota North, of course. Five of my most cherished back issues.

Thriller, by Robert Loren Fleming and Trevor Von Eeden. http://www.comicbookbin.com/thriller001.html

Chase

Though I think the Comic Book Urban Legends column confirmed it was really canceled because Mike Carlin disliked it…but my vote is Justice Society of America by Strazewski & Parobeck. Thankfully a version of the JSA that was even better eventually came along.

Heckler

Did Nth Man by Larry Hama and Ron Wagner make it past 12 issues? If not, that’s my vote.

What spurred this question by the way? The Order?

The Crew. It may not have been the best, but it at least had the most potential.

Joe Casey’s Deathlok. He was doing Matt Fraction before Fraction was Fraction.

Aztek, Chase, or Automatic Kafka.

@T – Nth Man went to 16 issues but deserved to go longer. If Marvel put together one of their oversize omnibuses of that, I would be all over it.

The Thing, by Dan Slott.

Empire Lanes by Peter Gross (I think)

Skull the Slayer

Jack Kirby’s New Gods and Forever People. They both only lasted 11 issues each. The only Fourth World book that made it past 12 issues was Mister Miracle, which kinda half-heartedly chugged along until issue #18.

Emissary

the 1st non-mini cloak and dagger
and echoing others here chase was pretty fantastic as well

Dan Jolly’s Bloodhound

Youngblood vol.3 by Alan Moore and Steve Skroce

(my gut first reponse is, of course “Your mom” – but moving past that…)

Chase. Or Young Heroes in Love. Or Vext. ARGH too many to decide.

But I’ll go with Chase.

Minx by Peter Milligan. I doubt his Infinity Inc will last 12 issues either.

I was going to second the vote for the Strazewski & Parobeck JSA, but Ben Herman reminded me that the New Gods books only lasted 11 issues. So I’ll say that.

Ooh, Vext! Yes!

Hard to argue with New Gods.

Crossgen’s “EL CAZADOR” was a fun series.

New Gods

OMAC

Devil Dinosaur

The Heckler

Justice Society (the only good JSA series!)

Brother Power, the Geek

Prez

Geez, there’s a lot. After more thought, I could probably come up with a bunch more…

Agree on Slott’s The Thing.

Nextwave was canceled after #12, otherwise I’d include it.

Stormwatch: PHD and Welcome To Tranquility had 12 issues?

The Boys was canceled after 6 issues, but then returned by another publisher.

Casey and Cammuncoli’s The Intimates, though it went REALLY off the rails once the cancellation was announced, so maybe not.

Also, second Prez and The Crew.

Does Gail Simone’s Deadpool count? She did less than 12 issues of that and Agent X combined, I think

Chronos.

Automatic Kafka.

Chase and Chronos.

Chronos was so much fun.

I wouldn’t say it’s the best of all time, but at the moment this question instantly brings to mind “The Order.”

Gail Simone did 5 issues of Deadpool + 9 issues of Agent X (with 6 issues of fill-ins on the latter), so it doesn’t count.

Ditto for The Intimates (12 issues), Young Heroes In Love (which lasted 16 or 18 issues), Stormwatch PHD & Welcome to Tranquility (12 issues each).

I’d go with Chase.

Matthew Lazorwitz

March 24, 2008 at 11:51 am

Chase, definitely Chase.

I’d say Major Bummer, but I think that went 15 issues. Such a fun book.

…. or was that a mini?

Henz_Be_Luvin_Me

March 24, 2008 at 12:02 pm

The Order has to be the most overrated critically-lauded title that was cut short.

Get that?

Xero. It went for twelve issues exactly. It put Priest on my radar for life.

Dalgoda
The Thing – Dan Slot
New Univseral

Aztek
Justice Society
and I’ll second on Bloodhound.

It may not be the best but Firebreather comes to my mind. I really liked these 4 issues.

Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E.

Chase, totally
I would also add newuniversal and Welcome to Tranquility but the first one is only on hiatus and Tranquility is supposed to come back after the Wildstorm events finish, so I don’t know if they count as “cancelled”

Even had Nextwave and Ant-Man not just hit 12 issues, my pick for best fast-canceled series goes to The Order.

And honourable mentions also go to the 14 issue District X and Excalibur series’.

Firebreather is coming back, Filrouge, so I’m not sure if it counts!

Most people didn’t seem to care for it, but I liked Giffen’s Suicide Squad series and was sad to see it go after only 12 issues.

I’ll second Thriller by RL Fleming and T Von Eeden.

gotta go with the flow …

The Parobeck JSA

Kirby’s New Gods and Forever People

Dan Slott’s Thing

Thriller (after Fleming and Von Eeden left, I basically considered it cancelled)

It’s too bad ‘Mazing Man ended at just 12; otherwise I would have put it at the tippity top. Same with Leave It to Chance.

Vext, Slott’s Thing, and Area 52. (Dunno if that last one counts, since it was a mini, but it ought to have come back at some point.)

The Order, fo’ sho’. It just steams me that there hasn’t been more of a reaction, but then I guess that’s why it’s getting cancelled, no?

Consider the Heckler seconded or thirded or whatever point we are at.

Warlock (M-Tech) by Louise Simonson and Pascual Ferry

or

The Giffen Suicide Squad

All the ones mentioned that I’ve read (Aztek, Order, Justice Society, Vext, New Gods) and I’ll add Druid. Warren Ellis wrote a text page stating that it was an ongoing series, not a 4-issue limited (which Marvel called it, maybe when sales for issue 1 came in).

Jubilee. Robert Kirkman laid some great groundwork, but I think people just don’t particularly like the character as she has been used. (I blame the cartoon.)

New Gods
Forever People
OMAC
Devil Dinosaur
Adventures on the Planet of the Apes
Omega the Unknown
Justice Society of America (1992)
Aztek: The Ultimate Man
Chronos
Thing (2005)
Fighting American (1954)

Chase

Xero – did it last 11 or 12?

The American – Dark Horse 80′s title

Kobra

Warlord? – it was originally cancelled after 2 issues…

Star Hunters

Xero lasted 12 issues. I checked before I posted it. I think it’s creator owned, and he was brain dead at the end of it, but Xero and the Closer organization would be great in Checkmate.

New Gods and Forever People are tied for number 1, followed by Ditko’s Shade the Changing Man at number 2, then Ditko’s Creeper and Blue Beetle runs. Honorable mentions to Stig’s Inferno by Ty Templeton and Barry Windsor-Smith: Storyteller by Barry Windsor-Smith (although I’m still pissed he didn’t complete the stories in the overpriced hardcovers he did years after the series ended.) A dishonorable mention to John Byrne for Danger Unlimited, cancelled because he didn’t like the sales pattern of higher orders for number 1 than subsequent issues.

61 posts into it, and nobody’s mentioned Viod Indigo yet. Wow.

I’ll add V/I to the list and give a +1 to the New Gods stuff.

Black Goliath had potential – Clairmont was writing it (IIRC).

Anyone remember Crystar? It actually blew, but there are good childhood memories in there.

OMAC and Omega the Unknown are way up there for me.

Do the Claw backups in Warlord count?

Gerber and Milgrom’s Guardians of the Galaxy.

Ditko’s Shade.

Omega.

Big Numbers.

Coyote.

I keep hearing these good things about Chronos — think I may check it out.

Sorry, I actually don’t know that Shade, Guardians, or even Omega was cancelled due to sales. And I’m not so sure “sales” is specifically the thing with Big Numbers, either.

Boy, I wish I had those ones back, though.

Honorable mentions to Stig’s Inferno by Ty Templeton and Barry Windsor-Smith: Storyteller by Barry Windsor-Smith.

I’d say Stig’s Inferno doesn’t qualify, because it wasn’t really cancelled due to low sales. I think I’ve read that Ty Templeton couldn’t continue with it after the death of Klaus Schoenefeld.

Just repeating at this point, but:

Chase
The Order
Chronos
Justice Society of America

I liked Peter Cannon… Thunderbolt at the time, but I doubt it has aged particularly well.

“Best,” no — but I always wanted to know what was going to happen in issue #8 (and beyond) of LOGAN’S RUN. What was the secret of the Cubs?!!! Tell me, marvel, tell me!

Also have a huge soft spot for DC’s STALKER–THE MAN WITHOUT A SOUL (4 issues). Again, certainly not “the best”.

I second the motion for
Skull the Slayer (a terrific Marv Wolfman offering)
and
Omega the Unknown (no one wrote teens trying to fit in like Gerber!)

Thanks for this topic. I may seek out some of the titles mentioned!

Or else Measles.

Props to the folks who said Thriller, though.

Dan (other Dan)

March 24, 2008 at 3:06 pm

Automatic Kafka was great; Joe Casey and Ashley Wood became some of my favorites through that series.

At least they were warned of their cancellation so we got the very good issue #9 out of the deal.

Keith Giffen’s Vext, which couldn’t make it past issue #6 “Battling the one foe he can’t defeat– LOW SALES!

I’ll throw my hat in with those mentioning The Crew. The team finally gets together and–bam!–cancellation. Seven issues and out.

I like The Order just fine, but I have to admit, as much as it goes against the prevailing sentiment, all the praise does seem a bit overwrought. It’s been a competently mounted series (I still think Fraction has a lot of growing to do as a writer before/if he becomes a force to be reckoned with) but the pacing always struck me as a bit off as the whole “M.A.N. from S.H.A.D.O.W.” plot has progressed very strangely.

I liked Vietch and Edwards Question. I know it was a mini but they wanted to do a series and I liked it a whole helluva lot better than that new MontoyaQuestion crap.

"O" the Humanatee!

March 24, 2008 at 3:47 pm

I agree with a good number of those already mentioned (such as Omega the Unknown, Slott’s Thing, Thriller as done by Fleming and von Eeden), but am I the only one who liked Breach, which lasted 11 issues? I know that there’s a lot of negativity out there about Bob Harras, but I (who never read his Marvel stuff) thought Breach was a very well-constructed superhero story with nice elements of mystery, science fiction, and human drama. What made its cancellation all the more frustrating was that the first scene of the first issue was set something like “12 months later,” and then the rest of the stories were presumably building to that moment – which we never got. Instead, Breach was pointlessly killed in Infinite Crisis.

Breach also had very nice art by (for the most part) Marcos Martin.

I concur with The Crew and Dan Slott’s Thing (which I could only imagine would gather a new fanbase now that Slott’s moved on to bigger and better… Things? Aw, the pun…).

I’d also add the Erik Larsen/Joe Bennett Nova series from 1999 (only 7 issues!!!) and Larsen’s Defenders series from 2001. Funny coincidence that two Erik Larsen series came to mind, I guess.

I’m trying not to post on these things any more, but I felt compelled to vote for Dark Dominion and pretty much all other Defiant Universe comics (Warriors of Plasm made it all the way to 13, so I guess it wouldn’t count). All featured interesting characters with great art and very strong writing.

I was surprised to find I enjoyed DC Comics’ Bloodhound.

Kinetic and Fraction from DC Focus were good, also.

Vincent Paul Bartilucci

March 24, 2008 at 4:20 pm

Chronus and the Strazewski & Parobeck Justice society were already mentioned so I’ll go a bit further back and say DC’s Rima, The Jungle Girl.

Master of Soup

March 24, 2008 at 4:23 pm

Batman

As much as I love Chronos (and I do love me some Chronos; here’s hoping Morrison uses him in Final Crisis), the series wasn’t cancelled due to low sales. DC was willing to give the series more time to build a base, but after Archie Goodwin’s death, writer John Francis Moore decided to pull the plug himself.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

March 24, 2008 at 4:44 pm

Automatic Kafka, without a doubt.

Thriller lasted 12 issues. Hey, who else is gonna plug my website?

Also, let me second all the CHASE mentions, and add some of my own which I haven’t seen:

MAJOR BUMMER,

TIMESPIRITS,

STARSTRUCK, and

GEMINI BLOOD!

Oops, never mind on the Major Bummer. It lasted longer than I remembered!

Gemini Blood. Good sci-fi with an interesting premise and good art.
Manifest Eternity. It was a crazy combo of magic and sci-fi with absolutely amazing artwork by Dustin Nguyen.

Justice Society of America by Len Strazewski & Mike Parobeck

My vote goes out to Torres & Miyazawa’s Sidekicks. It was like that movie Sky High, except for that it was actually fun.

Oh, Void Indigo, natcherly.

…Batman?

Guess.

I’d chime in on Chase, New Gods, Creeper, and Justice Society. I’d also add Hercules Unbound, a nifty concept that combined Greek mythology with post-apocalypse/ruined-Earth SF… and I just wrote about the original run of Secret Six a couple of weeks ago. I REALLY wish they’d do some kind of collected edition combining those books and the Action Comics Weekly sequel by Pasko and Spiegle.

The entire Hercules run was going to be included in the Atomic Knights Showcase but DC pulled the plug on the book. Pity.

Loren said “…but after Archie Goodwin’s death, writer John Francis Moore decided to pull the plug himself.”

Really? I thought I read (in an interview with the artist) that Chronos got canceled because it had low sales and Archie was no longer around to champion it. Archie had believed in the potential of the book and had kept it going prior to his death.

I could be completely wrong though.

The Order, Chase and Ant-Man

Of those not yet mentioned:

Gerber’s Hard Time: Season 2 (I think this should count)
Ellis’s Hellstorm: Prince of Lies
Ellis’s Druid

Isnt the Order officially cancelled because Matt didnt want to keep on writing without Kitson?

Andrew Collins

March 24, 2008 at 7:47 pm

Technically it lasted THIRTEEN issues, but DC’s version of the Phantom in the late 80′s was pretty entertaining. I recently read it for the first time and was sorry to see it ended just when it was getting some momentum going. Good stuff from Mark Verheiden and Luke McDonnell.

Oh I forgot another one — “Gate Crasher”. Not only cancelled but cancelled with an unresolved cliffhanger ending!

I cannot figure out why this one failed — really funny dialogue and crazy sci-fi written by Mark Waid and art by Amanda Connor!!!!

And I’m not so sure “sales” is specifically the thing with Big Numbers, either.

I think it was hearsay from Dave Sim I heard sales dropped dramatically between issues 1 and 2. Moore has said he has the story mapped out on a giant sheet of paper. I’m sure Bill Sienkiewicz has his price for finishing it, and the circulation drop after the first issue didn’t cover it.

I’d heard good things about Just a Prilgrim and Gatecrasher, but I have to admit the spiteful part of me is glad Wizard (or Gareb Shamus or whoever) no longer publishes its own comics.

Automatic Kafka. I loved that thing. I also dug Casey’s reboot of Wildcats but it lasted more than 12 issues.

The Minx. Peter Milligan is very under-rated.

Ditko’s Shade The Changing Man but atleast it had pretty good Vertigo revival. Well atleast until the American Scream storyline ended and things got unfocused.

g.

Another vote for Chase, with Chronos a close second.

I loved the 4 issues of DC’s Stalker. Stalker made my top 10 DC characters. I’d also include Crossgen’s Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang and the Negation War.

Khaldoun Omar Abbas

March 25, 2008 at 12:25 am

Chronos
Heckler

Gee, if I’d known that everybody else was gonna vote for Dakota North, I wouldn’t have wasted my vote on something so obvious.

Druid, the follow up to Hellstorm.
I think the Power Company hit 18, but that was a great series.

Breach. Damn, that was a good series. As “O” said it was a nice blend of sci-fi and drama that I thought was unlike anything else published at the time. The worst thing about it being cancelled at #11 was that one of the previous solicitations promised the series building to a “you’ll never believe it” #12 issue – and they couldn’t even do that.

Bernard the Poet

March 25, 2008 at 5:36 am

Matt, I loved Dakota North too. It is almost the only comic that managed to be cool.

2001: A Space Odyssey by Jack Kirby.

I’m going with The Crew, it was just hitting its pace when it was cancelled.

Splint Chesthair

March 25, 2008 at 6:34 am

Aztek: The Ultimate Man

La Cosa Nostroid, the Scud spin-off that ended on a cliffhanger

Omega The Unknown

The Holy Terror, a supernatural Mexican wrestling series with art by Phil Hester that only got two issues from Image

Did Crossgen’s The Path last more than 10 issues? If not, that

SanctumSanctorumComix

March 25, 2008 at 6:50 am

THRILLER
hand’s down.

That was one AWESOME series.

After reading the replies, I also recalled how much I liked DRUID, but I’m pretty sure that was always INTENDED as a mini (and continuation of HELLSTORM – which WAS canceled, but a good portion of THAT comic SUCKED until later issues).

So, yeah… THRILLER.

~P~
P-TOR

Omega The Unknown. Way ahead of its time.

The biggest bummer is we’ll probably never know now how it was all intended to play out.

Young Heroes In Love is one of my favorites of all time, but I think it went 18 issues so it can’t be counted.

Off the top of my head, Aztek is the leading one. Nextwave if you count things that made it to 12.

Dasbender,

Really? I thought I read (in an interview with the artist) that Chronos got canceled because it had low sales and Archie was no longer around to champion it. Archie had believed in the potential of the book and had kept it going prior to his death.

Here is the interview with artist Paul Guinan that tells the whole story of the cancellation, and says it was Moore’s decision.

Oooh, definitely The Thing by Dan Slott.

Aztek, Omega, Slott’s Thing (oo-er)I totally concur with but no love for Pete Bagge’s Sweatshop ???

I’m having a hard time deciding between Chronos and Terror Inc.

Does Nightmask count? I can’t remember if it had 12 issues or 11.

Theno

124 entries, and my choice hasn’t been mentioned!

Bat Lash, by Argones, O’Neil, and Cardy.

ClanDestine

Chain Gang War

Death’s Head Gold;
ClanDestine;
The Order;
Jubilee.

@SanctumSanctorumComix:

No, from what I understand, Druid was to be an ongoing in which Ellis and Manco could start over without the supposed “baggage” of Hellstorm. Ellis was mightily pissed at having yet another series yanked out from underneath him, which leads into the final page of Druid, which is the most bitter thing I think I’ve ever read in a comic.

Will

FunkyGreenJerusalem

March 25, 2008 at 6:48 pm

They even pulled a text page Ellis had written for the final issue of Druid to make way for a letters page – he used to have it up on his site.
But yeah, it was meant to be an ongoing, hence the complete destruction of everything within in the final pages.

The Order. Hands down.

But it is followed by Jubilee, the Crew, and Chase.

I don’t quite get the huge love for Chronos. Anyway it was 12 issues so it doesn’t count.

I’d love to nominate Black Condor, but that managed 12 issues too – and Haywire which managed 13 issues.

Chase seems like the clear winner to me. New Gods created some great characters, but I couldn’t put it on the same level as Chase.

I think Primal Force didn’t make it past 12 did it? Then again, I just re-read it and found I didn’t enjoy it as much as I recalled…..

never mind. :-)

Oh yeah, forgot Clan Destine. Well, technically I believe it did go 12 issues, but only the first 8 count (Davis left after that).

The Intimates

I think Primal Force didn’t make it past 12 did it? Then again, I just re-read it and found I didn’t enjoy it as much as I recalled…..

Primal Force made it to 14. It was the first series I collected to be cancelled. And as my first exposure to Red Tornado, it took me a long time to get used to him as anything other than a mysterious mute robot.

my votes:
Xero by Priest
Aztek by Morrison

I know I’m late to the party, but I’d have to say Hulk 2099. I recently saw all ten issues in a bargain bin, and I’m kicking myself for not grabbing them right away. (Electricity be damned!) I know it didn’t quite live up to everyone’s expectations, but it was an excellent representation of a futuristic Hulk.

Leave a Comment

 

Categories

Review Copies

Comics Should Be Good accepts review copies. Anything sent to us will (for better or for worse) end up reviewed on the blog. See where to send the review copies.

Browse the Archives