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Thoughts on the Next Ten Announced DC Comics #1′s

DC has announced their next ten titles (launching with new #1s) and they’re an interesting mixed bag of creators.

Let’s see what we have!

First off, Cliff Chiang is amazing, so it great to see him get such a high profile book like Wonder Woman #1.

The cover looks great.

The writer on the book, Brian Azzarello, is awesome in his own right, and this pair worked on one of DC’s best series of the last five years, Doctor Thirteen, so I am officially pumped about this book.

I like Dan Jurgens, but Justice League International seems like a strange fit. He didn’t seem to mesh with the title when he FIRST wrote them, so he seems like a curious choice to relaunch the new series. But obviously, this is a new approach and he has done good work with his creation, Booster Gold, so I’m cautiously optimistic!

Really, one of the more interesting aspects of these 10 titles is the fact that of the ten books listed, three of them are written or co-written by creators you would typically think of as artists. And that’s not even counting Jurgens, who is actually drawing the Green Arrow re-boot with writer JT Krul (as Jurgens long ago established himself as a writer). As an aside, why have Brett Booth do the cover of Green Arrow #1 if you have Dan Jurgens doing interior art?

I absolutely adore Francis Manapul’s artwork, so if DC wants to give him Flash to write and draw (with Brian Buccellato), god bless ‘em…

Ethan Van Sciver as a co-writer with Gail Simone on a new Firestorm book? That was a surprise, but it sounds like a fun concept (Jason and Ronnie now being teen friends who get caught up with Firestorm) and artist Yildiray Cinar is great.

Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis will undoubtedly make Aquaman a top title. Johns made Booster Gold a strong seller, for crying out loud!

It is interesting that DC is trying out a new anthology. Good for them. I like anthologies, and Ryan Sook as the cover artist with a main story by Paul Jenkins and Bernard Chang? Sounds good.

Captain Atom, Hawkman and Mister Terrific, I really can’t say much about either way. I’ll have to see what happens, although I am quite pleased to see Mister Terrific finally getting his own comic (I’d like a better costume redesign, though)!

So far, nothing jumps out as a major problem and Azzarello/Chiang stands out as a major plus, so I’m pretty good right now (especially since the continuity changes seem to be particularly minor so far, unless you have some weird attachment to Firestorm continuity).

100 Comments

Glad to see more optimism. I think the fear of the unknown caused most of the hate for the DC2niverse, but things aren’t looking so bad now, are they? I mean, Several really intriguing titles coming out of the loop, with probably several more exciting surprises waiting in store. So far, I plan on buying 6 of the 11 titles, 2 of which I wasn’t purchasing prior to the relaunch.

Michael Sacal

June 2, 2011 at 11:47 am

“especially since the continuity changes seem to be particularly minor so far”

Wait two years, when they reboot it again, then two more years when they reboot it again, then two more years when they reboot it again, then two more years when they reboot it again, and then two more years when they reboot it again like they have continually done with the Superman titles for the last decade.

Ricardo Amaral

June 2, 2011 at 11:47 am

Dan Jurgens has said in past interviews he hated JLI. So I am very displeased with his choice. Love Aaron though. And apart from Azz with Chiang, it’s all very, very meh for such a huge rebooting.

[...] reports: CNN, Comics Alliance, The Beat, Comics Should Be Good.) Tags: Brian Buccelato, Francis Manapul, Relaunch « Annotations: Flash #278, [...]

“Everything you thought you knew is about to change!” Usually when you see that before a season premiere of a TV show, it means that desperation has set in and in trying to save the show, they have just dug its grave. So, the ‘hate for the DC2niverse’ comes honestly, as we have all seen what the end result of such claims usually end as and we really do not want to see a perfectly good product go away.

CautiouslyOptimistic

June 2, 2011 at 11:57 am

Maybe worth giving some of these a shot. I’m a huge Cliff Chiang fan. I’ll be totally honest, I don’t get Mister Terrific. The whole concept sounds like a bad after school special from back in the day. Firestorm also looks kinda ‘Meh’ too.

I just hope they re-power The Specter into the bad-@ss-mo-fo that he used to be. Crispus Allen has wussified him HUGE.

As someone who doesn’t read DC…I’m not sure how much of this selection will make me jump on, honestly.

So, Flash is basically a quarterly title, right?

Van Sciver and Simone is interesting; they have a friends, but they’ve had some massive political debates on each others’ message boards since they stand on opposite ends of the American political spectrum.

No, no, no. JLI should be written by Giffen/Dematteis with art by Maguire.
There’s just no other choice.

I’m happy that Guy Gardner is still around.

I’m also for Jurgens writing JLI. Booster Gold has been a great series and I’m hoping he keeps that energy going.

I am incredibly bummed about Jurgens getting the JLI book. He’s not a bad writer, but I find him to be aggressively mediocre; constantly readable but never truly enjoyable. I had assumed that Winick would still be on the title (although I’d secretly hoped they’d get Giffen and DeMatteis to continue on after this summer’s Retro issue). I’ll still get the book – it is the JLI after all – but I’m considerably less enthusiastic now.

I think I might buy Wonder Woman for the first time, ever.

Here’s hoping that the announcements get more impressive. On the whole, nothing overly incredible going on, and this artist-as-writer situation is getting annoying…anyway, some thoughts:

Justice League (Johns & Lee ) – Very exciting if they maintain a monthly schedule. I think Lee’s been working on it for the past two years, just to be on the safe side. His art also looked a little sketchier, so maybe he’s going to push a bit harder.

Wonder Woman (Azzarello & Chiang) – Very excited about this. Azzarello and Chiang do great work together, and I’m a sucker for Chiang’s sleek, clean artwork.

Aquaman (Johns & Reis) – If these two can’t make Aquaman awesome, then they better just bring the Batman: Brave & The Bold version into continuity.

Flash (Manapul & Buccellato) – Two untested artists writing the comic book that just led into the Universe-changing event? Hopes are not high for this one…

Firestorm (Simone/VanSciver/Cinar) – I like Gail. She’s like Peter David. Bright, clever, and woefully underappreciatd in terms of sales. Ethan is enthusiastic about comics (even if his art can be a little rigid at times), but the premise and costume change leave me unimpressed, and Cinar hasn’t really been doing anything overly exciting on Legion of Super-Heroes. Again, doesn’t seem like the best foot forward.

Hawkman (Daniel & Tan) – I like Philip Tan’s art — his characters look like more solid versions of Tom Mandrake’s work — but Daniel is a terrible writer. I don’t have high hopes.

Green Arrow (Krul & Jurgens) – I love Dan Jurgens’ art, but JT Krul is hit-or-miss, so this might be okay.

Justice League International (Jurgens & Lopresti) – Another bad writer/good artist combination. What happened to Judd Winick?

Mister Terrific (Wallace & Robinson) – Eric Wallace did a great job on Ink, and Roger Robinson is terribly underrated. This book could be awesome.

Captain Atom (Krul & Williams III) – Krul again? Okay, maybe he’s got a handle on this. I’m more concerned about Williams. He’s a consistent artist, pumping out comics on a monthly basis, but his characters are getting more and more awkward looking. Go back to his early days on Flash, or even Seven Soldiers Mister Miracle, and Williams might be the man for the job. JSA All Stars Williams should stay at home.

DC Universe Presents (Jenkins & Sook) – Paul Jenkins? I thought he was Marvel Exclusive. To me, this could be the sleeper information from the whole article. Sook’s dynamite, but if Jenkins is going to do some DCU work on a larger scale this might be great.

Firestorm intrigues me. I like Gail’s work, and I’ve always had a fascination for the character, but never really followed him. So, continuity changes shouldn’t annoy me there.

JLI, I’m on the fence about.

Is it just me, or does Green Arrow look more like the Smallville version of the character than the DCU version?

Theno

Remember five weeks ago when Justice League: Generation Lost and Firestorm’s story in Brightest Day both ended on cliffhangers that would presumably carry over into new ongoings? So were those cliffhangers written with the explicit knowledge they wouldn’t be followed up on, or this reboot such a last minute decision that Geoff Johns, the apparent architect of the reboot, had no clue about it when he wrote the ending of Brightest Day?

I’m left wondering what a Brian Clevinger penned Firestorm could have been like…

This is going to be one of those crappy reboots, where “stuff has changed, but not everything, but old stuff that you probably don’t really care about, or do, but we don’t, so who cares. No underpants for Superman!”

The description for Mister Terrific sounds more like a sci-fi adventure series than a straight superhero series.

If so, I’m in. I could go for some more variety in my comics.

I have to say that I am actually rather surprised and even pleased by most of these. I LIKE Dan Jurgens, and Booster, and I’m thrilled beyond belief that Winick isn’t going to be handling JLI. Oh, and Guy is there, which is also fabulous.

Azzarello and Chiang on Wonder Woman is fantastic, and Van Sciver and Gail Simone together should be interesting. And Aquaman will be gorgeous AND fun. So I haven’t a single negative here.

So far, none of these really ‘grab’ me. I like Gail’s work, but not Firestorm. Is that Dick and Donna in JLI, or do we just have one Batman on two teams? And what are the Titans going to look like? At this point Deathstroke could use a reboot, bad.

Cinar on Firestorm means he’s off of Legion of Super-Heroes (or Legion Lost, whatever the new title is called) which is not something I’m happy about. Also is it just me or does having two people with similar powers – Firestorm and Captain Atom – seem redundant?

This all looks completely terrible. Where’s T to gripe about it? :)

I don’t really see much to gripe about, but mainly because my standards for DC are so low that I expected much worse. Nothing here looks great, but so far nothing looks blatantly terrible either to me. So long as Didio doesn’t do much editorial interference and they don’t go crossover crazy or retcon themselves within the first two years I’m cautiously optimistic.

Isn’t anyone happy in this universe? Why is everyone frowning or screaming?

Anyway… I’m definitely buying Firestorm, Wonder Woman, and Justice League. I have to think about the rest.

So based on the JLI and JL pictures, Batman is losing his scallops on his gloves. That just seems wrong.

This batch of solicits really exposes the potential problem with this: DC has a very thin roster of talent.

- Justice League:: This will be fun for however long it lasts. I know that Johns and Lee each have their detractors, but it will be the first time JL has been the clear #1 book at DC since the Morrison-Porter days.
- The Morrison Superman title: Grant Morrison plus Superman is a sale to me.
- Wonder Woman: Azzarello & Chiang are a terrific team. It is great that DC is giving WW a priority.
- Aquaman: Johns & Reis make this worth at least a look to see what direction they are headed.
- The Flash: I’ve loved the look of the Barry Allen re-boot, but Manapul is a total unknown on the scripting side. I might wait for the reviews before I decide on this.
- Mister Terrific: I’ve heard good things about both the character and the writer. I’ll see what the reviews say.
- Firestorm: I like both Gail Simone and Firestorm, but am a bit confused about the role of Ethan Van Scriver. I don’t want to start following a Simone Firestorm and get stranded.
- DC Universe Presents: Terrible title, but an anthology might be fun with a new DCU.
- Justice League International: I’ve never much cared for Dan Jurgens as a writer and I’ve never loved the JLI without Giffen.
- Green Arrow: JT Krul has written some of the worst comics that I have ever read.
- Captain Atom: Ibid
- Hawkman: It is rare to have three different reasons to avoid a single title.

The only thing I don’t like in all this is Azzarello as a writer, mainly because I hate his “too cool for school” noir dialogue style. It always comes off way, WAY too pleased with itself. But he usually plots well so we’ll see. And Chiang’s art more than makes up for it.

I hope Karl Keschl is on a book.

I think the real test for me is:

1) how they handle the 2nd and 3rd generation heroes like Dick Grayson and Tim Drake.

2) how much Didiocy they retcon. A total retcon of Identity Crisis alone would make all this worth it. An added bonus would be a retcon of Countdown.

“Hey, guys, how can we make the Flash even FASTER?”

“More Lightning bolts?”

“Yes. ON HIS HEAD.”

“SO COOL.”

Isn’t JT Krul horrible? I bought the first GA (he’s one of my faves) and thought the plot was interesting and everything else (dialog, pacing, new characters) was awful. Every preview since seems to confirm that impression. Is it just that the first 6 pages of each of his comics sucks and the rest are good?

Totally agree with T on Azzarello’s painful “hard boiled” style, but maybe he’ll have to do something differet w/WW?

Booster Gold’s costume redesign is unbelievably bad; why? Ditto Firestorm(s).

Why no Winnick on the JLI stuff?

Why was Rob Liefield allowed to redesign Cyborg?

Mr. T series sounds fun.

hugeknot – even when Azz lets up on the godawful hardboiled noir style, he still gives off that way too pleased with itself vibe in his dialogue, like when he did that Doctor 13 mini. I know a lot of people liked it, but when I read it I could hear the writer giggling to himself at how clever he thought he was being.

DC could have come up with an alternative to a big reboot. They didn’t. They could’ve done these ideas of mine, and correct me if I’m wrong if these would or wouldn’t work:
1. Put recap pages in their books. Makes it a little easier for newer readers to see “the story so far.” Marvel does that all the time!
2. Just before the opening and after ending of one of their movies, they could put up a little disclaimer that says something like “To learn more about the characters depicted in this film, visit your local book retailer or comic book retailer, or go online at www.(insert DC or Marvel website).com.” It would actually ENCOURAGE people to find out more about the characters they may or may not necessarily love.
3. Put out more of those “Saga” or “Reading Chronology”-type books so they get the ideas of what the characters have been through. From there, they can decide where to jump into the stories.
4. At a movie screening, do a promotional thing where you get a free “origin” or “Handbook”-style comic with your ticket purchase. They have a starting point because of that.

Those methods would have been WAY better that a company-wide reboot; they could make some money off of that, and get newer and younger readers at the same time. Putting them in more general retail outlets would also help, as pointed out earlier. I was in a Barnes and Noble the other day, and lo and behold, they just put in two racks dedicated to comic books in their magazine section for all to see!!! And there’s more titles on those two combined aimed at a variety of ages and demographics.

“So long as Didio doesn’t do much editorial interference and they don’t go crossover crazy or retcon themselves within the first two years I’m cautiously optimistic.”

So, you’re not optimistic at all, is what you’re saying.

Acer, your problem is that you’re a guy who is undaunted by lots of continuity and the idea of having to research it, and you’re trying to put yourself in the mindset of the average joe, who ISN’T like that.

I’m a longtime comic reader and even I can’t deal with DC’s continuity. You can’t assume everyone is like you. This reboot is actually going to make me try DC comics again for the first time in years. Recap pages wouldn’t accomplish that.

I know a lot of people are angry at the past 10 years of comics “not counting.” For some of us, that’s exactly what’s appealing about this.

Ricardo Amaral

June 2, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Acer

I don’t think a reboot is bad per se, but it should be more than just “restarting” the books with younger characters. Yes, digital is the big thing here, but we should’ve seen it coming.
Thing is: it is still the same old thing. There is no sign that DC will “rethink” how comic book should be made to a new audience. This was the most important thing they should think of when rebooting. They haven’t. DC editorial doesn’t know how their readership will be. I bet Earth One got them by surprise, but the graphic novel done-in-one big chapter seems much more interesting these days than whatever they want to pull as monthly. There are very few books that should survive as monthlies, to be frank. Are they doing anything like it? Doubtful.
But again: it’s all about DC editorial inability to understand the new climate. It takes more than more JT Krul books to make it a lasting strategy.

Keep in mind people, this is only about 1/4 of the total line. It’s way too early to make assumptions about the whole line based on this. I know it looks like more of the same because some of the names are people associated with recent bad stories like JT Krul, but I assume they’re saving the biggest and more radical announcements for later on.

So basically the same people who pushed me away from bunch of DCU titles (Krul, Daniel, Wallace) are going to push me away from another bunch of new DCU titles. And here I’ve thought that changes are coming…

I am more of a Marvel reader so I don’t care that DC is doing another reboot. What I care about is same day digital delivery and if they actually try to advertise this outside of comics.

A 2 minute blurb on an all day news channel or the nytimes covering this NOW is worthless come August. I would like to see ads in papers and magazines that aren’t comics related for liek 2 weeks leading up to this re-whateverthey’recalling it. Heck, maybe even a tv commercial or two that says something like “Don’t know where to start with OTHER comic companies? We’re starting NOW! Come get us on Wednesday.”

Otherwise, it’s just more marketing towards the people that are already buying your stuff.

I’m also hoping for an eventual decrease in price for digital but I’ll take what I can get.

DC have some good artists, no doubt but letting a bunch of artists like Manapul, Finch and Van Sciver write books … sounds like Image all over again. Fail

Yeah, letting your star artists write books is a terrible strategy. What the heck was Marvel thinking letting Simonson, Miller and Byrne write books in the 1980s (not to mention Starlin in the 70s)? A total retroactive “fail” for Marvel. DC, too, for letting Keith Giffen write comics.

Ricardo Amaral

June 2, 2011 at 2:09 pm

But Brian, these artist you mentioned were at the top of their game, with at least 10 years of solid work behind. Most of them working as co-plotters. Giffen didn’t start writing on his own for at least 15 years. I think it is a fair game to say it is a bit more like Image than Marvel in this case.

Francis Manapul has been doing mainstream comics for a decade. Tony Daniel was doing mainstream comics for over 15 years by the time DC let him write a book (and had written a series for Image already). Ethan Van Sciver has been doing mainstream comics for over a decade.

And of the three, only Daniel is writing a book solo (and has been writing a solo book for a couple of years now, so obviously DC knows what they have with him) – the others are working with co-writers.

It is a perfectly logical strategy. Manapul is one of DC’s very best artists – if the guy wants to write and draw a comic, I’d sure let him. Just like Marvel was quite willing to let their star artists write books if they wanted to.

Yeah, letting your star artists write books is a terrible strategy. What the heck was Marvel thinking letting Simonson, Miller and Byrne write books in the 1980s (not to mention Starlin in the 70s)? A total retroactive “fail” for Marvel. DC, too, for letting Keith Giffen write comics.

What is the batting average, I wonder?

Miller, Byrne and Simonson were huge successes at Marvel. Howard Chaykin and Mike Mignola have been great. I forget about Giffen, since he is so often a co-writer. I am not personally a big Starlin guy, but I know lots of people are.

In the middle, you have folks like Jim Sternanko. His output as a writer-artist was revolutionary, but he wasn’t able to sustain it for very long.

However, there have been a ton of outright failures. None of the Image guys could really create their own scripts. None of the folks that DC has converted in recent years have shown much of an aptitude for it, so far.

I guess that I tend to forget the writer-artists whose work I enjoy started out as artists. However, I never forget picking up a terrible comic for an artist that I am enjoying only to discover that the same person has become a terrible writer.

In defense of DC, when Marvel gave artists a chance to write in the late 70s and 80s, they took artists who were good storytellers and had them replacing writers and editors who were doing a poor job. When Marvel did it in the 90s, they used artists who weren’t even good storytellers and had them replacing writers and editors with great track records who were doing great work.

Right now with DC, I see no harm in giving the artists a chance to write because similar to the Shooter era, the writers and editors are dropping the ball anyway. What do we lose by giving DC artists more work? One less JT Krul or Dan Didio written book out there? I’ll live.

Has anyone else noticed that the “new” concept behind Captain Atom is to make him into Dr. Manhattan?

“Captain Atom has all the power in the world, but no hope of saving himself. Charged by nuclear energy, possessing vast molecular powers, he has the potential to be a god among men – a hero without limits. But the question is this: Will he lose himself in the process? ”

That sounds like Dr, Manhattan. I know Cap was the original basis for Doc, but still this is a complete rip off of Alan Moore’s spin on things by a terrible writer.

[...] Read the rest here: : Thoughts on the Next Ten Announced DC Comics #1?s – Comic Book Resources [...]

Mr. T looks like he is heading to the Blue Oyster bar in that costume. And I thought Cyborg looked stupid…

It seems to be the same costume, but I hope it’s not the same batman in both the JLA and JLI. Hopefully it’s Bruce in the A, and Grayson in the I. Even more hopefully that DC clears up exactly what Batman/men will be in the DCU come September. I have a feeling that it will just be Bruce, though, and DC knows that no one will be buying the remaining Dick as Batman books if that info is shared right now.

@ T.

The problem is that, as a consumer, I know to avoid a book written by JT Krull irrespective of who is drawing it. With Francis Manapul writing his own scripts, I am lost.

The good news is that being lost matters less with day-and-date digital, since I don’t have to decide ahead of time. I can read the reviews and buy it the issue if they are good.

Ricardo Amaral

June 2, 2011 at 2:34 pm

George

This has been Captain Atom’s logic much earlier than JT Krul’s. James Robinson did this, Winick also. In fact, even during Bates run this has been hinted. But I expect a lot of ham fisted dialogue from now on.

Manapul is a Flash fanboy who works at an immense pace…If anyone can write and draw a monthly book I would put money on him.

While I’m not a fan of this reboot, I do hope DC takes this opportunity to integrate the Red Circle, Milestone, Quality, Fawcett, and Charlton characters right off the bat. Hopefully characters like Captain Marvel/Shazam, Blue Beetle, The Shield & The Mighty Crusaders, Static, Icon, Freedom Fighters, etc. play a role in this relaunch and aren’t relegated to afterthought status somewhere down the line.

Eliot Johnson

June 2, 2011 at 2:39 pm

Wonder Woman should be awesome. Others not so much, but hopefully there will be a winner or two in there. The Flash will look nice anyway.

Man, those are some silly-looking Firestorm outfits. More so than usual, even.

I loved Doctor 13. Unfortunately it’s the only thing Azzarello’s written that I really liked, and I have actually read a lot of his stuff hoping something else would catch my fancy .

LOVED Doctor 13!! I seriously hope Wonder Woman doesn’t disappoint. I’m a huge fan of Cliff Chiang, it bums me out that there isn’t much he’s worked on, so I’ll be getting this as long as he’s drawing it even if the story sucks, because I’m an idiot like that. Though I won’t be surprised when DC do what they always do and fill the run with crappy fill in issues. That’s happened so frequently to my beloved Dini/Nguyen run on Detective & SoG, it drives me nuts.

Can’t believe Chiang even makes that costume work! Or at least look cool, the stupid choker and upper-arm bracelet don’t work…The rest of the costumes may as well have not been redesigned at all, they’re no better.

I’m thrilled with the re-boots. I’ve been looking to save money, now I have a good place to complete my collections.

I’m not interested in re-interpretations of the characters I love. When they were done right the first time, re-boots just seem like a perverse way for DC to make money. And every re-boot so far has just made DC more convoluted and confusing.

The Crazed Spruce

June 2, 2011 at 3:07 pm

I’m just wondering, do you need an iPad, or some kind of tablet, to download these comics, or can you do it (legally) on a laptop? ‘Cause if I need a tablet, I’m screwed. Much as I hate the idea of rebooting the whole line, some of these titles seem damn interesting.

After the bleedingcoolnews revelation that DC finds women’s bodies (particularly their legs) pornographic while still emphasizing male muscles bulging out of tight costumes, I sincerely hope DC’s push to save their sagging sales fails miserably. DC has been soooooooooooooo bad for the past few years now and these gender hypocrisies are among the clearest examples why.

I look forward to Johns giving “secret origins” to Aquaman’s shirt and gloves and having a different limb or cast member get gorily lopped off or eaten every few issues.

@ The Crazed Spruce:

No problem. Comixology works everywhere.

On the costume topic. When I was growing up and loving comics I copied and traced figures. How simple it was to draw Flash, Atom, Batman. Now as a kid growing up you would have to learn how to draw Firestorm and bad collars. Oh and when did Mr. Terrific get in the NBA? Nice ink.
Keep it simple kids. We can all count 30 costume changes that did nothing to perk up sales, it just made everyone aggrivated.

I generally agree, but Firestorm is a weird example.

He’s always had an overly complicated costume.

Some Morrisonesque writer should write a Maxi-Series ultimate crossover called Crisis in the DC schizophreniaverse…. detailing how the Marketing Suits constantly juggle their characters about, passing them off to insane creators (the best creators need to be a bit crazy), seemingly on a whim… utilizing the energy of the chaos to generate sales (rather then the energy of a well ordered plot… best exemplified by how Walter Simonson turned a wing helmed boorish chump into 45 issues of gold). Instead of the typical parody of the superhero dealing with the psychological angst of being twisted and used by his/her creator/god: the focus would be on the reader/fan…. completely disgusted by the lack of competence within the editorial/godhood of the company which distributes half of his childhood hobby.
It’s silly to be a complaining fanboy, but obviously: DC considers their characters to be silly! They clearly have no love for them, and use them willy-nilly for whatever marketing scheme they feel can gain headlines, and garner curious buyers.
The final of the Crisis in the DC schizophreniaverse would be the end of the entire line of DC Comics. They could produce digital stories and trades. THERE IS NO POINT IN MONTHLY SERIAL STORIES THAT CHANGE THEIR REALITY EVERY TWO YEARS!!!!!!!!

I’ll just wait and buy the quality stories in trades from Amazon next year. Or the company can give them to me now, while their marketing dept. creates the buzz for it’s release and guarentees a sale.

I’m getting a Quantum and Woody vibe from the new Firestorm concept. This is not by any means a bad thing…

Hugo Sleestak

June 2, 2011 at 3:57 pm

I don’t know about the rest, but the Hawkman revamp pic I’ve seen just looks awful. The spiky mask, giant talons and open mouthed rage are completely alien to the elegant being of order that Hawkman always was (at least until the “barbarian with wings” version began to be marketed some years ago). Really, it looks like a 1990′s Image knockoff of Hawkman.

Hey WackyWally,

You should try reading Giffen’s Ambush Bug. It wasn’t out even all that long ago.

…Ambush Bug: Year None that is….

I’m one of those people who gave DC the benefit of waiting until they announced concrete news before I decided if I was for or against this but after their decision to put Manapul on Flash as writer and artist. I’m very against this, Flash should be a flagship book written and drawn by DC’s best giving him the keys after Flashpoint is a horrible mistake. One that’s basically already caused me to drop several of the Flashpoint tie-ins in response. I had hopes that DC learned from their past mistakes on Flash but it appears the braintrust hasn’t learned a damn thing. I’m just waiting for the other shoe to drop with Green Lantern before deciding if I even care to continue to read any DC comics after Flashpoint right now i’m pretty pissed off with this new DCU.

Yeah Ambush Bug…. Great series, with a commentary completely ignored. Maybe. There are wonderful stories written today in the comic genre. What the Big Two have over the independents…. is the continuity of a long lasting interconective universe. they need to learn how not to throw the continuity away.

Mike Loughlin

June 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm

Dear DC,

I will give you my money if you make a good Green Arrow comic. I’ve done it before, and I want to do it again. It looks like you could use my $2.99 a month or $15 a trade. It’s yours when you make a Green Arrow comic that doesn’t suck.

Yours truly,
Me

Has Krul written any good comics? Seriously? I’m so disappointed that Green Arrow, my favorite DC character, is being written by him and drawn by Jurgens, one of the most boring artists around. I know he has his fans, but I didn’t like most of the Dan Jurgens comics I’ve read.

Wonder Woman & Superman: yes, please. I may even buy them in single issues if they’re not $4.99. Mr. Terrific, Flash, and DCU Presents could be good. I find Geoff Johns’ writing not to my taste, and don’t need to check out anything he’s involved in. Firestorm and Hawkman not written by John Ostrander don’t interest me.

T., you’re right about me. The reason I’m so undaunted is…I never got into comics till 2008. I barely read any of the stuff going on outside the 80-page giants, one-shots, certain storylines like the recent Justice League arc “JLA: Omega”, and the TPB’s of previous stories. Same thing goes for Marvel stuff. I’m a part-time fan. In terms of my top ten, comics are about 8 or 9. #1 belongs to Godzilla. I mainly grew up with the cartoons, so I have a big appreaciation for both the DCAU and the MAU. They’re how I got to know the mythos of characters like Batman and Spider-Man, and they seemed to be more cohesive than regular comics. In terms of comics, I mainly go for anything involving Godzilla, Transformers, and GI Joe (though for the latter two, I stopped after I couldn’t figure out the direction IDW’s taking those series, and thus only their new Godzilla has my attention). Once I started reading more of the Big Two, I constantly used Wikipedia to get more info on what they did before all the stuff right now. I barely know what goes on in the mind of a typical fan like all you guys. I can just make guesses and inferences. I’m a pretty neutral fan, I don’t favor one company over the other. I just don’t like certain actions taken with a character I’ve grown to love. I was pretty ticked when I found out Batman had been killed, and at first I thought it was in Batman RIP, it took me weeks to find out it was in Final Crisis.

When I was growing up, my idea was that DC and Marvel, all comic companies, constantly create characters all the time. That was the stereotype I followed, and it was present even in cartoons. I still think that to be what they’re supposed to do other than make money. I still think that even with this move, DC (and Marvel) have to deal with the fact that, even with movies and cartoons based on their properties out there and seen all the time, they just won’t measure up to videogames, various electronic devices, bad tv shows, and other things will keep distracting people young and old alike from picking up their books. Even when they do digital, some other thing on the Ipod or Ipad will distract them from a DC Comics or Marvel Comics app.

I’m surprised that DC or Marvel, beforehand, never bothered to do this: survey people and kids in this country to see if kids ACTUALLY read comics or play with action figures anymore. Maybe that would’ve been a factor in their decisions then.

DC is giving so many artists the chance to be writer-artists (artistes?) that I am really optimistic that at least one of them will turn out to be a Miller or a Simonson. Even a 70s/80s Byrne would be good.

I have to admit, I am very intrigued by the Wonder Woman title. As noted by someone above, Chiang’s art makes her new costume work (I would get rid of the choker though). JLI could be good … but I really wished DC took a chance and promoted Hawkgirl over Hawkman – I loved Hawkgirl in JL & JLU in the DCAU.

10 titles at $2.99 (I’m guessing)…. that’s $30.00 saved so far. While some of the creative teams sound interesting, the titles just don’t jive for me. The JLI cover looks great though. Nice to see August General in Iron from the Great 10 being used. Thank goodness the international heroes aren’t being wasted and left in comic limbo. Let’s see if the next 10 offer up anything interesting.

I think changes in costume are a good thing. Who goes around wearing the same thing day after day?

I find myself enjoying reading about this a bunch. I’m not going to buy a single one of the titles, but I do like reading the hype.

And, Brian, I think your Miller, Simonson, and Byrne analogy doesn’t hold up if you look at the context of the times, but I need to think of a smart way of saying what I mean. So can we retcon this article so that I thought of a smart way of saying it an hour ago and we all agree with me? Okay. Thanks. :)

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 2, 2011 at 7:50 pm

That’s such a weird list, I can only assume DC is sitting on the big one’s until closer to the day.
I mean, there’s some that intrigue me, and others I’ll check out, but nothing that’s making me go ‘HOLY SHIT!’.

Jack Tango:

Aquaman (Johns & Reis) – If these two can’t make Aquaman awesome, then they better just bring the Batman: Brave & The Bold version into continuity.

My personal hope had been that they were going to reset the current universe into more of a Batman: B&B framework – where the heroes are all the same, but they kick so much more ass in every way.

T:

The only thing I don’t like in all this is Azzarello as a writer, mainly because I hate his “too cool for school” noir dialogue style. It always comes off way, WAY too pleased with itself. But he usually plots well so we’ll see. And Chiang’s art more than makes up for it.

He avoided that with Dr 13, although from your latter comment I see you weren’t a fan – I can see where you’re coming from, though I don’t think it was quite as smug as you feel, it was a little smug.
That said, if he can bring his plotting skills from that – balls to the wall crazy – then it could be a good book.

I doubt you checked it out, but his Flashpoint: Batman mini had a noir feel, but without his usual noir dialogue tendancies.

Hugeknot:

Isn’t JT Krul horrible?

Pretty much – though his Teen Titans has been alright.
His opening arc was pretty good, though the second arc is rather slow and boring – Damian was in the first arc as Robin, and I think the character stirred all the others up quite well.
Since Tim Drake came in and Damian left, the books been noticeably more bland, with Nicola Scott’s art as it’s saving grace.

Acer:

1. Put recap pages in their books. Makes it a little easier for newer readers to see “the story so far.” Marvel does that all the time!

In my opinion, those recap pages are eyesores.
Who wants to open up a comicbook, and see a page of text?
The first page of comics should grab the reader in, not bore them with a plot summary.
Use the medium you are telling the story in to catch us up – it’s really not that hard.

Nigel:

I’m thrilled with the re-boots. I’ve been looking to save money, now I have a good place to complete my collections.
I’m not interested in re-interpretations of the characters I love. When they were done right the first time, re-boots just seem like a perverse way for DC to make money. And every re-boot so far has just made DC more convoluted and confusing.

If you aren’t interested in reinterpretations of characters you love – and they got it right the first time – wouldn’t that have meant you stopped reading DC around the late 50′s?
EJ:

I was for or against this but after their decision to put Manapul on Flash as writer and artist. I’m very against this, Flash should be a flagship book written and drawn by DC’s best giving him the keys after Flashpoint is a horrible mistake

Manapul is a name outside of comics thanks to the tv show he’s on, and a big name in comics because of his art.

I think Flash is the perfect title for an artist/writer – it needs to be a very visually driven book.

One that’s basically already caused me to drop several of the Flashpoint tie-ins in response.

You’re dropping titles from a self-contained storyline, because you don’t like one creator on a book that’s coming out of it?

Acer:

I’m surprised that DC or Marvel, beforehand, never bothered to do this: survey people and kids in this country to see if kids ACTUALLY read comics or play with action figures anymore. Maybe that would’ve been a factor in their decisions then.

They did waaaay back when.

Action Figures must still be played with – there’s still aisles of them in toy shops and K-Marts, so someone must be buying them.
I bet they’re more of a moneymaker than comics.
And I don’t think we need a survey to tell us kids don’t read comics – but I think we can blame the publishers for that.

Stefan Wenger

June 2, 2011 at 9:28 pm

So of course Morrison’s Superman is going to be awesome, but as to the rest… just a big WTF from me.

Wonder Woman, Mister Terrific and Captain Atom could actually be cool, but none of these are “eureka!” selections… and the rest of these announcements leave me just totally scratching my head about why on Earth DC would be desperate enough to make such a drastic gamble as to relaunch their whole line and to do it with (so far) primarily mediocre writers.

Jurgens on JLI!?!? Tony Daniel instead of James Robinson?? I guess Bob Harras really is in charge now. The guy did about as much as he could to ruin Marvel 15 years ago and he just might do it to DC too.

FunkyGreenJerusalem,
Why wouldn’t we need to survey them? Surveys are done all the time to determine product quality. They do it with food, they do it with clothing, furniture, tools, everything, just to see if people are interested or not. They certainly could’ve determined the fate of comic books as “kid stuff” by conducting a survey to see if kids still bought them or not. Then we could have had an indicator of where the industry was going. Like I said (and counting the fact you put about the publishers), videogames, bad television, countless electronic devices, and other fads and trends are also to blame for being distractions from comic books, and regular books for that matter. We live in an age now where anything newly-introduced can become obsolete in the blink of an eye, and it sickens me so. I myself am a bit of what I’d call a “nexus consumer”, where while I do buy or use new things I still use old ones (I still even watch videotapes, play a Gameboy Color, and use both a Walkman AND a CD player to listen to music).

I’ll buy Wonder Woman and the Morrison Superman.

Anything else I should happen to read, I’ll read in library trades, barring excellent reviews across the board.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 2, 2011 at 10:09 pm

Why wouldn’t we need to survey them?

Because we know they aren’t buying them!

Surveys are done all the time to determine product quality. They do it with food, they do it with clothing, furniture, tools, everything, just to see if people are interested or not.

That’s more focus testing, which is usually done with much smaller groups, so you can get them discussing the product, and get a more detailed view of how people see the product.
That’s not the worst idea in the world at all – maybe WB has been doing this since putting Diane Nelson in charge, and this is the result of that. I’d be very surprised if it would come from DC to find out what kids, or non-comic book readers think or want, as Marvel and DC haven’t seemed to care about that since the 90′s.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 2, 2011 at 10:12 pm

The guy did about as much as he could to ruin Marvel 15 years ago and he just might do it to DC too.

Did he?
A lot of the damage to Marvel was done before he became EIC.
Not all his initiatives were great, and some were downright terrible, but most of the damage to Marvel came from the business folk getting in the way of the creative folk.

interesting teams picked espically can not wait to see what Gail does with firestorm. though the whole thing looks to be headed for a new dc implosion if it bombs and also setting things up for another crisis of the dc universe.

With all due respect to Jurgens, who created one of my favorite characters in Booster Gold, the JLI without Giffen, DeMatteis, and Maguire is an unfunny joke.
oh, and i totally agree that it’s wrong for Bats to lose the glove fins.
Even as a hardcore DC guy (with my only Marvel comic being the hardcovers of X-Factor by Peter David), best of luck to DC here. With the exception of the Morrison Superman, they’re going to need it.
*sigh*

No major problem? Try JT Krul continuing on Green Arrow.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 2, 2011 at 11:26 pm

oh, and i totally agree that it’s wrong for Bats to lose the glove fins.

He’s lost the yellow oval again as well – Jim Lee must really hate that yellow!

FunkyGreenJeruselum wrote: “In my opinion, those recap pages are eyesores.
Who wants to open up a comicbook, and see a page of text?
The first page of comics should grab the reader in, not bore them with a plot summary.
Use the medium you are telling the story in to catch us up – it’s really not that hard.”

Personally I prefer the recap pages, I often find it takes me out of the story when a bit of dialogue is only there to remind the reader what has been happening.

I think in general this news is really exiting. I’m more of a Marvel reader (for super hero stuff) and have often wanted to get into a bit of DC but felt a bit daunted about where to start. This may give me a jumping on point but if it turns out to just make the continuity even more convulted rather than a clean reboot that would maybe put me off further.

Kind of a bland reveal for my tastes. I might buy the anthology title, and I like Cliff Chiang and Francis Manapul enough that a few good reviews can win me over, but nothing here really grabs me. I hope the next batch is more enticing.

I’m also a little disappointed with all the artist-written books. I don’t think it’s fair to compare Miller, Byrne, and Simonson with guys like Tony Daniel, Ethan Van Scriver, and David Finch. The old timers did some amazing storytelling in their artwork. I won’t say it stood to reason, but it wasn’t so far-fetched that they would be able to carry those skills over to scripting. On the other hand, it seems risky business to trust an artist like Finch to write good stories, when his storytelling already leaves something to be desired in his area of profession.

Re: Recap Pages: Sorry for the double post, but I had to weigh in in favor of recap pages. A writer of monthly comics is given precious few pages to tell a story; why waste any of them rehashing old news? Besides, most comic book writers are unwilling to put forth the effort and page space needed to deliver the information gracefully. Recap info almost always feels forced and inorganic anyway, so it makes more sense to get it out of the way on a recap page which the reader can skip at his leisure.

And to address Funky’s point, the recap page doesn’t have to be a text wall. Thor: The Mighty Avenger had lovely recap pages composed of panel excerpts from previous issues, similar to a “Previously…” montage on television.

My only caveat is that many comics with recap pages wind up spending their first five pages parroting the same info again. This is so annoying and defeats the purpose of the recap page. Please editors or whoever, if your title has a recap page, make sure your writer knows this, so readers don’t have to see the same plot point repeated half a dozen times.

Speaking of Peter David (as one of the first posters was) – wouldn’t be AMAZING to see him writing a DC book again!!! Why only have one great David title a month – when we can have two!! ;)

Chris Kaufman

June 3, 2011 at 6:10 am

I’m a comics retailer in Louisville and this is the most exciting event to help push sales that anyone has ever done. It looks like DC and WB got together and said let’s get this right. We shall see. If comics are staggered in foot traffic should increase tremendously, the creative teams should keep them coming. Grant Morrison on Supes again.

Waiting for the word on Batman…

Mike Loughlin

June 3, 2011 at 6:14 am

Pure supposition here, but I’m pretty sure Peter David has a history of disagreeing with editors and/or other higher-ups. I don’t think he’d fit in with Didio’s editorially-driven DC.

Finch, Van Scriver, et al can’t be compared to Miller, Byrne, Simonson, Mignola, Chadwick, Kieth, etc. because they didn’t come up in the business during a time when storytelling was prized over illustration. The early Image era and its fallout pushed clarity and effective writing to the side in favor of spectacle and pin-up shots. I’m not the biggest Shooter fan, but I think late-’70s/early-’80s Marvel was a good training ground for artists to learn about story structure.

Keeping in mind that it’s too early to judge fairly, my first impressions:

Azzarello on Wonder Woman doesn’t seem a fit to me- most of the stuff I’ve seen him do has been gritty crime stories. The cover doesn’t help- I see blood on Diana’s sword, so it looks like they’re emphasizing the killer-warrior-over-superhero aspect again *sigh*. And I’d be impressed about her facing a rain of arrows if not for the fact she used to block hails of BULLETS with easy. Don’t like the art much either, looks kinda sketchy.

Does the new JLI mean “New version of the Bwa Ha Ha League” (which Didio had destroyed so disgustingly early on in his reign) or “International Hero Team with League members?” I’d prefer the latter. I think Jurgens can make it work. Hopefully it will reintroduce former Global Guardians characters (another interesting but much-abused group of DC characters) besides Fire and Ice.

Firestorm actually sounds interesting, and while the art looks over-the-top (not the costumes, that’s a given) it could be fun to read with Gail scripting. (Just don’t add any musical numbers! :P )

I think a regular anthology book is a great, even necessary thing for most comic companies: how are you going to know which of your hundreds of characters are going to be the Next Big Thing unless you try them out? And while most probably might not sustain their own miniseries, a feature in such a book might, especially with a good regular creative team. (Mr. Terrific, as much as I like him, should also have been tried out first before giving him his own series.)

But again, my biggest fear is: can this new take last long before they start killing people in gross ways (and that includes innocent bystanders, not just existing characters) for cheap shock, or otherwise saying “Life Sucks despite the superheroes”? Only way to know is to wait and see…

Only people who never read “Extreme Justice” could describe the new Booster costume as bad. It’s just the last one with extra piping. Of course, some people had extreme Pavlovian reactions to Diana wearing trousers.

Obviously this is going to suck and be shit and awful, or at least that’s how history will record it. It’s a ballsy move and it’s already kind of paying off with the Not-We (ie non-comic fans have heard about it and are considering looking into it), but it’ll fail because the fans, even while they clamour for change, fear and hate it when it comes. And they already treat everything in comics as terrible until proven innocent anyway. Whatever the quality of the comics themselves, whatever changes and decisions are made, it’ll be torn apart within a year and everything will be very quietly changed back.

Oh, and who on Earth is the brunette in the bottom left of the JLI cover? Please, please tell me that’s not the Canary without her wig.

Looks like Donna Troy.

Since you all seem to hate these creators (especially JT Kruhl) don’t buy the books or better yet you come up with ideas and write your own stories. You’re all legends in your own minds. I’m sure you are all so good, and that’s why you don’t work for a comic book publisher. Jesus Christ get something that resembles a life!

If you all didn’t put creators so high on the alter the books might be cheaper as well.

Is it just me, or does that Van Sciver Firestorm look Jurgens-y?

@Stefan:

You know they’re mediocre because?

Do you have John Brynes pre-cognitive abilities? :P

@Greek: Yes because DC’s business runs on some hardcore fanboys who wouldn’t buy any of these and they wouldn’t sell at all

get real, all of these creative teams shows that dc have at least made their line of books tighter or near tighter to Marvels.

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