web stats

CSBG Archive

DC Reveals Their Teen Titles…

And there are some major surprises mixed in there!

First, they’re taking a “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach with Paul Levitz’s Legion, which is good…

Fabian Nicieza’s Legion Lost (about a group of Legionnaires being lost in time) is a tried and true idea (Nicieza has been doing some clever advertising for this book on message boards)…

On Scott Lobdell and Brett Booth’s Teen Titans, while I don’t care for the straps, I think the Red Robin outfit is actually a step-up. I did not like the cowl on Tim Drake.

John Rozum is a great writer, so I’m pleased to see him doing Static Shock with Scott McDaniel.

Finally, Rob Liefeld returns to the comic book that helped launch his career, alongside writer Sterling Gates…

98 Comments

I find your lack of criticism disturbing. That Teen Titans cover is godawful.

Well, after yesterday’s Dark awesomeness, today’s announcments were bound to be crap. Liefeld/McDaniel/ Lobdell… evil evil stuff. And, since Levitz currently bore me with his Legion, it’s only Legion Lost for my tryouts.

I actually read on Brett Booth’s Blog today that this isn’t the final cover for Teen Titans #1. It was something he whipped up for work meetings or some such. Still it looks pretty cool.

And before anyone says anything, notice the Gag that Booth drew into the picture? Kid Flash taped the “S” to Superboy’s back LoL it ain’t part of the outfit.

Dude, Rob Liefeld? When are people going to finally stop giving that guy work? His art is still crap, after nearly 25 years in the industry!

Liefeld’s work on the Hawk & Dove cover looks pretty good. It’s very subdued. Not over-the-top.

Legion and Legion Lost: Ok
Red Robin and Kid Flash: Ok
Static Shock: Ok
the rest: let’s see what happens
Hank and Dove: i’m hoping that will be a bad joke

So Teen Titans is now basically Young Justice under a different name? Annoyed, but whatever. At least it gives me a book to ignore amongst what’s been a surprising number of intriguing series. Shame it has to be my favorite team, though.

@dnwilliams I totally agree, that cover is terrible. The only good part of it is Red Robin… and even then it’s pushing it.

Which really upsets me because Tim Drake is one of my favorite characters, and now he’s in a team book that will more than likely have mediocre art. I honestly thought that the 30 rippling muscles in thighs were done with, but I suppose there are vestige groups hanging on. Why can’t the art be cleaner? A strong line instead of a scratchy one. A magic lasso that makes sense rather than looking like Spider-Man webbing from the 90s.

Oh well… I’ll still try it out and stop prematurely judging.

When Didio announced last week that they were trying to update these characters for the modern era, it appears he didn’t really the modern era is 2011, not 1997.

Brett Booth? Jim Lee redesigning the whole line? Liefeld? Bob Harras overseeing it all? Is this all a bid to attract unrepentant 90s Marvel/Image fans?

Oops, “really” should read “realize.”

On the good side, Static Shock looks to have potential. Not crazy about the costume, but it’s not bad either. Not a dealkiller at all.

Rob Liefeld: Bwa ha ha ha.

But everything else here looks promising. I actually think Teen Titans might be the perfect book for Lobdell. I’ve always loved McDaniel’s art, so I’m happy he’s on a book, and the two Legion titles both look solid.

Here’s what I’m interested in: DC announced that they’d have 52 new #1s. We’ve seen 39 so far. What’s left? Obviously the Superman family of titles, which will probably be 4 or 5 books. We still haven’t seen JSA, and I expect Outsiders and Doom Patrol to also be in the mix. Because James Robinson is thus far not on anything, I suspect he’ll be the JSA writer. It’s a title that would play to his strengths. Mark Waid has also been suspiciously absent.

That still leaves around 5 more titles that could be major surprises. Some options: Metamorpho, Wildcats, Majestic, Suicide Squad, Spectre (though if he has a title, it likely would have been announced yesterday), New Gods, Aztek (I could picture Morrison giving another go at this), Lobo, Zatanna, a new Secret Origins title, Power Girl (Amanda Conner on art?), Chase, and Young Heroes in Love (the return of Resurrection Man makes me think at least one more late-90s cult title will get another chance).

Furthermore, I still expect at least one more title to have an unexpected superstar writer. Bryan K Vaughan? Bill Willingham? Chris Claremont?

I love the new Red Robin and Kid Flash outfits.

Sam Robards, Comic Fan

June 8, 2011 at 11:49 am

This DC reboot/whatever has me thinking of trying one or two new books in addition to my GL haul.

Red Hood and the Outlaws is a must-get for me. I love Jason Todd, and they’re giving him his good costume back! Don’t get me wrong, the Quietly design was quirky and fun for a couple issues, but I like the design from Under the Hood best, which is basically the new design minus the big red Bat-symbol on the chest.

Speaking of red, holy crap, was DC gonna get charged more if they used less red on that Teen Titans cover? Don’t get me wrong, red’s my favorite color and, being a Georgia Bulldog, I love how it goes with black, but that’s a LOT of red. I’ll still try it, though. I got out of Teen Titans not too long after Johns left (maybe around issue 50 or so?) and have been interested in getting back in. This seems as good a place as any to try it again.

Now that I think of it, there’s a lot of red in the surrounding Bat-family. Dick’s new costume, Jason new bat-symbol, Tim’s costume, Batwoman’s costume. I’m surprised Bruce and Damien don’t have some red in their costumes, given everyone else.

Also, Rob Liefeld? Color me confused. Oh well. I don’t care for Hawk and Dove anyway.

Red head kid flash? Say hello Wally

Not fond of what they’re doing with the Teen Titans. Brett Booth still looks like a drunk Ken Lashley and Scott Lobdell? Between those two and Rob Liefeld it’s like it’s 1996 all over again. Still, nothing apart from Teen Titans leaps out at me as being really annoying.

Sam Robards, Comic Fan

June 8, 2011 at 11:53 am

T. said:

“Brett Booth? Jim Lee redesigning the whole line? Liefeld? Bob Harras overseeing it all? Is this all a bid to attract unrepentant 90s Marvel/Image fans?”

You forgot about Greg Capullo (spelling?) on Batman! As well as Scott Lobdell and Fabian Nicieza writing various books (both of them being 90’s X-Men writers).

Red head kid flash? Say hello Wally

It’s Bart. DC said so already. Ever since he became Kid Flash they’ve gone back and forth with making his hair go from brown to red and back again. I’m guessing they’re using the reboot to make it now permanently red.

ehh
legion titles look ok
teen titans is a little disconcerting because i do like some of the new look on the guys side but i dont know who everyone else is plus wonder girl looks like a mix of her and arrowette.
static is cool but not a fan of liefield and his constipated characters.

Anyone else feels like they are going to make Superboy a complete dick? Anyone who has a sign taped on their back by their own choice has to be.

Liefeld. *sigh* How exactly are Hawks “straps” attached to his chest? Do we assume they are taped on? They don’t appear to be attached any other way.

I tend to like the Legion and Tim Drake, but there’s not a title here I’ll even try. I am, however, interested in how you give Superboy a tattoo. That deserves a Secret Origins issue of its own.

Oh my God, why are you guys complaining so much? I bet most of you are not even reading Teen Titans…I know I’m not, you know why? Because it’s awful. So any TT reboot is welcome by me.

And what’s the big deal about the art? Yes, it’s glossy, filled with muscles…and pretty sexy. I think we got to a point where we can have the subdued art of Alex Maleev and the 90’s art of Ed Benes all co-existing together. Why not? Diversity is the key. Besides, I think a teen-oriented comic is supposed to look a little sexy (as opposed to the boring art of Avengers Academy…can’t even remember the guy’s name).

Anyone else feels like they are going to make Superboy a complete dick? Anyone who has a sign taped on their back by their own choice has to be.

I think it’s a gag by Kid Flash. See the thumb pointing to Superboy’s back by Kid Flash?

Yep Liefield still can’t draw. This whole reboot just screams “Hey! Look how hip we are, our characters are younger now. That should draw in a younger audience right?” I’m going from about twenty titles to about six. Great job DC.

“When Didio announced last week that they were trying to update these characters for the modern era, it appears he didn’t really the modern era is 2011, not 1997.”

It’s really more early ’90s. Lobdell and Nicieza were gone by ’97, and two out of the four Image founders are involved in the reboot.

Anyway, Static Shock and Legion Lost are what intrigue me here the most. Although Liefeld’s cover for Hawk and Dove is a lot more subdued than, say, this:
http://www.coverbrowser.com/image/cable-deadpool/1-1.jpg

Yeah, this is definitely an “I love the ’90s” batch in a big way. How retro!

@Rockin69

I *am* reading Teen Titans, Superboy, and Red Robin right now, along with other books.

“Out from behind his desk”? Tim Drake not Wayne or Drake Wayne? Looks like Red Robin’s thrown completely out of continuity.

“Power house thief?” Huh?

These aren’t Bart, Tim, Connor and Cassie

So far DC’s gone from 7-9 to 1-2 books for me.

I said 1997 because 1996-1997 was the time when Heroes Reborn was done, and two Image founders involved in that are involved in this.

I can’t believe there’s not going to be a Young Justice comic capitalizing on the cartoon. This can’t be the sum total of teen comics, can it? Plus we haven’t seen Blue Beetle Jaime Reyes, have we? But he got a mention in the initial announcement–I think. Miss Martian, the new Aqualad… they’ve got to have a home somewhere.

But the Teen Titans characters seem to be GREATLY rebooted: “Tim Drake is forced to step out from behind his keyboard when an international organization seeks to capture or kill super-powered teenagers. As Red Robin, he must team up with the mysterious and belligerent powerhouse thief known as Wonder Girl and a hyperactive speedster calling himself Kid Flash.”

Doesn’t it *sound* like these are new characters? Like Tim has never been Robin before?

It sounds to me as if Tim will be more like he was when first introduced as Robin. He was a breath of fresh air back then, so I see that as a good thing.

“Oh my God, why are you guys complaining so much?”

Because it’s ugly, regressive crap like this that implies that DC is going to completely squander this opportunity to do new, cool stuff.

Oh GOD, the horror! What’s next, shoulder pads and pouches on everything?

GAH! Rob Liefeld…backfrom hell! Arrgh! My eyes!!!

Why is every character drawn by Rob Liefield always screaming?

That one Legion Lost chick with the monster arms and pointy ears is wearing a skirt. I thought that was verboten in the new DCverse?

Okay, I have a bizzare love of everything about the 90’s, but even I think this looks terrible. They appear to be completely redoing the Teen Titans, starting Superboy, Wonder Girl and Kid Flash all over again. That’s not good, and will really confuse everything. And Sterling Gates is a great writer, why is he stuck with Liefeld? WHY?

Legion and Static look good though.

@Sam robards, Comic fan

Since when is Nicieza bad? He’s one of the better 90s creators that moved onto one of Marvel best books (Cabel and Deadpool) and he was writing for DC before Harris became EIC.

There’s nothing bad about Capullo either, check out his DeviantArt gallery.

@Scud:

” I’m going from about twenty titles to about six. Great job DC.”

People really care what a guy called Scud thinks..not

Good job posting worthless crap, scud.

Also for proving DC’s fanbase is stupid and shallow.

The Liefeld thing doesn’t bother me because dude is so lazy. When’s the last time he did four months in a row of anything that came out in a timely fashion? I think him and Jim Lee are just marketing stunts here to attract attention. No way they can keep a monthly schedule for a whole year or more unless maybe they had big lead times. What I’m curious about though is who are they trying to appeal to with this? 90s fans who gave up the hobby and might be lured back?

To DC’s credit though, their nonsuperhero titles look quite good. I’m guessing that’s because Didio and Harras have the least interest in those and therefore end up micromanaging them less.

That being said i think this is the end of Sterling Gates career unless he’s off after two issues

Too bad.

I am sort of looking forward to the seemingly inevitable Todd McFarlane title.

Ricardo Amaral

June 8, 2011 at 2:34 pm

This relaunch is a way of DC saying: I don’t give a crap on creative teams – let’s pump franchises. And keep a very tight editorial hand on it, so let’s hire those writers that can everything we ask for.

I just know that I stopped reading Marvel when Lobdell took over.

I also can’t believe it. DC’s got the chance to reboot their entire universe, they could do anything, and what they do? A rehash of the 1990s. The worst aspects of the worst decade of superhero comics.

This relaunch is a way of DC saying: I don’t give a crap on creative teams – let’s pump franchises. And keep a very tight editorial hand on it, so let’s hire those writers that can everything we ask for.

Which is exactly how they ran the line before the relaunch, except with way less 90s-inspired visuals.

The reboot is a great idea, but not run by the same yahoos who were there before the reboot.

“Tim Drake is forced to step out from behind his keyboard”

Tim Drake=The Earth-nu Oracle?

Ah, Liefeld… Where every woman looks anatomically broken, and every man looks permanently constipated.

To be fair to Liefeld, Hawk genuinely is always screaming. Not much can be done about Dove, though. She looks half-unscrewed at the waist. Also her left breast is in her armpit.

But really, kudos to DC for giving the Internet yet another reason to write the whole project off sight-unseen: now we can say they’re actively seeking to repeat the entire 1990s based solely on two pictures and two names.

DC reboot: now with 50% more 90’s Marvel writers and artists? I know they’ve all moved on to other things since then and maybe it’s a facile argument, but they’re just missing Bachalo and… (little help) and I’m back in high school again. I’m kinda too ignorant to say anything too incisive, but seeing all those names together on one event seems like a peek back into Marvel’s stable from back in the day when I started collecting.

I am outraged that DC could even CONCEIVE of doing this to such a venerable institution as Hawk and Dove. They are iconic characters in the medium, and should only be illustrated by a tender and loving hand, well versed and steeped in their rich history. The legions of Hawk and Dove fans deserve better than this, for all of the loyalty and support they have shown both the company and the characters.

OUTRAGEOUS. Rob Liefeld is truly truly outrageous.

Static Shock looks like it could be good. I really like the new Red Robin costume. A hell of a lot more than the new Nightwing costume anyway.

My thing with Red Robin’s costume: are the feathers attached to his arm like Falcon or the Vulture, or is it a feather shaped cape? The former would be awful but the latter could be cool. All the straps and pouches are way too busy though (yes, look closely at the best area, there are indeed pouches.)

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 8, 2011 at 4:39 pm

First, they’re taking a “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach with Paul Levitz’s Legion, which is good…

Thank Christ!
There will be one title I read that’s more or less the same!

Fabian Nicieza’s Legion Lost (about a group of Legionnaires being lost in time) is a tried and true idea (Nicieza has been doing some clever advertising for this book on message boards)…

This could be cool.
I had been expecting a series about the 90’s Legion, last seen travelling around the mutliverse, hunting for survivors of interdimensional mishaps – but I can see that doesn’t really line up with the idea of a fresh start.
(Tangenting, but DC could do a lot worse than taking another look at that 90’s relaunch of Legion – I think it was a very good job at relaunching an old series for new readers).

On Scott Lobdell and Brett Booth’s Teen Titans, while I don’t care for the straps, I think the Red Robin outfit is actually a step-up. I did not like the cowl on Tim Drake.

I just don’t know what to think about this one. Lobedell did good with the early Generation X, but that art is giving me bad 90’s vibes.

I like Tim – though unsure about the wings. A recent Red Robin storyline sent Tim into a virtual reality internet thingy, and the costume they gave him in there – Red Robins, but with no cowl, and a more Robin mask – looked great for the character.

That said, I don’t like the look of that Superboy or Kid Flash.

John Rozum is a great writer, so I’m pleased to see him doing Static Shock with Scott McDaniel.

Bleeding Cool has it that McDaniel is co-writing.
Not sure what to make of that.

Finally, Rob Liefeld returns to the comic book that helped launch his career, alongside writer Sterling Gates…

I wanna say ‘Yay! Sterling Gates!’ but it’s just not coming to me for some reason.

I like Tim – though unsure about the wings. A recent Red Robin storyline sent Tim into a virtual reality internet thingy, and the costume they gave him in there – Red Robins, but with no cowl, and a more Robin mask – looked great for the character.

That was a great costume. But I guess it looked too modern and not 90s enough so DC didn’t use it. If I’m not mistaken, Jim Lee designed ALL the new costumes right? Or is it just most? Because with the exception of Nightwing’s most took a turn for the worse. But I guess I have to give him props for not putting thongs on the female characters, even outside their pants.

John Rozum on Static Shock seems to confirm that Xombi is done. I’m still not ready to accept that information.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 8, 2011 at 5:01 pm

dl316bh:

So Teen Titans is now basically Young Justice under a different name? Annoyed, but whatever. At least it gives me a book to ignore amongst what’s been a surprising number of intriguing series. Shame it has to be my favorite team, though.

I’m, a bit lost here – that’s pretty much the same team that’s currently in Teen Titans, and although they weren’t always the team of the book, is the same team that Johns relaunched the book with, quite a few years ago.
I just figured the loss of Young Justice to make way for Teen Titans had pretty much healed over by now.

T:

Is this all a bid to attract unrepentant 90s Marvel/Image fans?

Whilst I don’t think it’s a desirable target market, if they got all those fans back into comics and onboard, doing 90’s sales numbers, everyone involved would get big bonuses and be hailed as heroes by their corporate owners.

Third Man:

I actually think Teen Titans might be the perfect book for Lobdell.

I think it could be a good fit as well. Lobdell’s been absent from comics for awhile, so hopefully he’ll come back with a stornger skill set.
He always did small adventures, or sitting around and talking well. His problem for me was the longer/bigger stories – he often seemed to fumble at the finish line. I’m hoping either he’s fixed that himself, or that the editors will take a hands on approach.

I’m slightly worried though, that with the amount of artists co-writing or just writing books, that other artists might decide to stop following directions from the writer and start drawing what they want.
It comes to mind when talking about Lobdell, after his Wildcats relaunch (that led into the Joe Casey run). It was very disjointed, and whilst fun, was very oddly paced – and then it came out that apparently, the artist had just started adding in action scenes to draw, including a giant robot in the first issue, which wasn’t in the script.

Mark Waid has also been suspiciously absent.

As he has been a few years.
He and Dan Didio reportedly don’t get along so well, or at least, really butted heads during the last couple of years Waid was at DC.
It’s a shame though, because he would be a perfect writer for this sort of thing.

Sam Robards, Comic Fan:

You forgot about Greg Capullo (spelling?) on Batman! As well as Scott Lobdell and Fabian Nicieza writing various books (both of them being 90?s X-Men writers).

Greg Capullo is actually pretty decent news. I’m not a fan of the scratchiness and cross hatching that got into his work, but if you look at his X-Force, early Spawn days, or the mini-series Angela, he’s quite a talented artist and storyteller – I’d say he’s probably got the strongest storytelling chops of most of the image artists in the 90s.

Nicieza was at DC on various books for a few years before this, so it’s not such a shock.

Rockin69:

I bet most of you are not even reading Teen Titans…I know I’m not, you know why? Because it’s awful. So any TT reboot is welcome by me.

I am.
JT Krul is surprisingly good on it – reminds me a bit of Sterling Gates on Supergirl – and Nicola Scott is on art.
Any book with Scott on art cannot be called awful.

T:

To DC’s credit though, their nonsuperhero titles look quite good. I’m guessing that’s because Didio and Harras have the least interest in those and therefore end up micromanaging them less.

I think it could be less down to personal interest, and more that the characters in these books aren’t already being exploited in other media, so they can be a bit more wild, and take chances on them – something you can’t risk with some of the bigger properties.

I like Tim – though unsure about the wings.

He just better hope the Falcon doesn’t find out about them, or he won’t be keeping them long.

That Teen Titans cover is one thigh pouch away from being the best 90s parody I’ve ever seen.

Jason Barnett

June 8, 2011 at 7:01 pm

can enough people complain to get that TT title scrapped before it even shows up? Cause art or not it is a seriously horrible idea, especially in a shared universe.

John Trumbull

June 8, 2011 at 7:05 pm

DC is employing Rob Liefeld while refusing to hire Steve Rude? Seriously?

Someone mentioned something about another 90’s Marvel artist. Were you thinking of Joe Madureira? Pretty sure he was on Uncanny while Bachalo was on Generation X. Andy Kubert was doing plain old X-Men at that time too.

Travis Pelkie

June 8, 2011 at 7:14 pm

Wait, weren’t Hawk and Dove both women most recently? Or is Liefeld that bad at anatomy? Oy.

And I agree with John Trumbull. Although wouldn’t it be sweet if one of the remaining titles was Rude on a New Gods thing? Not likely, I know, but man… I think Rude is unfortunately too slow to do more than, say, a mini, and I think he has been moving away from comics to painting and stuff.

And re: the flashback to the ’90s: DC higher ups seem to forget, probably 80-90% of those ’90s books that got sold are STILL bagged and boarded, waiting to go up in value.

I’ll end on a positive — Legion stuff looks cool, I always have liked them, and Rozum on Static Shock sounds worth picking up. Will Xombi continue? Howzabout an ongoing Midnight Mass?

DC’s still got about 5-10 announcements/official confirmations to make, so hopefully they’ve been hiding one or two more wowzers.

It may be an overeaction, so far it’s only 3 books that have 1990’s art. But, as far as I’m concerned, that’s 3 books too many. I am not as worried about Nicieza, Lobdell, Jurgens, etc. as representatives of that time period. As writers, they were secondary figures at best. My worry about them is that they’re all mediocre, though Nicieza has the potential to be better than that, and Lobdell has often been worse than that.

It’s just that it makes no sense. You want to rejuvenate your comics, get new readers, and the best way to do that isn’t aping a style that has been 15 years out of fashion. And worse, a style that has few fans, and lots of haters, according to polls I’ve seen in this site. Even most people who ARE nostalgic about the 1990s admit that a lot of it was garbage.

All right, that’s it, I’m calling it now. Harras has decided to redo everything he did in the ’90s and this is an extremely elaborate AoA. These changes are more random than CoIE and Zero Hour combined.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 8, 2011 at 8:06 pm

Wait, weren’t Hawk and Dove both women most recently? Or is Liefeld that bad at anatomy? Oy.

They were, but the original (?) Hawk came back in Blackest Night.

And re: the flashback to the ’90s: DC higher ups seem to forget, probably 80-90% of those ’90s books that got sold are STILL bagged and boarded, waiting to go up in value.

Yeah, but they made profit off of all those bagged and boarded copies.
The speculator bubble was bad for retailers and speculators when it burst, but the companies made gang-busters off of it.

DC’s still got about 5-10 announcements/official confirmations to make, so hopefully they’ve been hiding one or two more wowzers.

Hopefully there’s more Paul Cornell books to come!

Rene:

I am not as worried about Nicieza, Lobdell, Jurgens, etc. as representatives of that time period. As writers, they were secondary figures at best.

That’s true – but they seem to have done what they were told, and wrote some of the highest selling comics of the time.
If you’re trying to please the exec’s up stairs, you could do worse than assigning books to the writer of Superman #75, the writer of Uncanny X-Men #300, and the writer of X-Force #1.
Taking only sales figures reached into account, those three guys are golden.

Seriously weird!

All of the announcements so far seem like they have been aimed straight at my 53-year-old-fanboy heart.

Today, I barely recognize the characters.

OMFG! They should NEVER let Jim Lee redesign any costumes… They are horrible, up and down the entire line.

From the looks of things, it appears that DC is tired of being the #2 comic company and is shooting for #7 or 8 instead.

From the looks of things, it appears that DC is tired of being the #2 comic company and is shooting for #7 or 8 instead.

Zing!

Hoping Wonder Girl’s costume is similar to this as it’s a great change for her. And keep the Supes tattoo on Conner, totally works.

The only appealing title out of this bunch is Teen Titans. I think Brett Booth is a great, yet underated artist. Nice to see him getting put on some main titles at DC. And I have to say I love the 4 new designs of the core Titans (who are the other 2?), Especially Superboy! The tee shirt and jeans were driving me crazy! And Kid Flash just looks really slick! ;)

Bummed about Leifeld on Hawk and Dove, I just don’t like his art. :( Its a shame, because I have really been enjoying their journey through, BN: Titans, Brightest Day and Birds of Prey.

Every day DC has made me excited about a coming book… until now.

Not a single one of thes looks interesting and a couple of them (Titans and Hawk & Dove) look downright terrible.

Funky, the ultimate proof of their mediocrity is this: even though they wrote the best-selling comics of that time, people still don’t consider those comics as authorial work. Probably anyone could have written Death of Superman or X-Force #1 and it would have sold just as many copies.

That’s true – but they seem to have done what they were told, and wrote some of the highest selling comics of the time.
If you’re trying to please the exec’s up stairs, you could do worse than assigning books to the writer of Superman #75, the writer of Uncanny X-Men #300, and the writer of X-Force #1.
Taking only sales figures reached into account, those three guys are golden.

As someone who bought all those books and was admittedly totally suckered in by the speculator craze of the era, let me tell you that whoever wrote those books had absolutely zero input on my buying decision. It was just consumer mob mentality. And I actually like Jurgens and Nicieza for the most part. I just don’t think they had much to do with those sales figures. Many people I knew from that time, friends of mine, never even opened and read their copies of the aforementioned books for fear of them losing value, so I’m very sure the writing had little to do with it.

Funky, the ultimate proof of their mediocrity is this: even though they wrote the best-selling comics of that time, people still don’t consider those comics as authorial work.

I will say this, I don’t think those guys are mediocre. Nicieza wrote some good books when he wasn’t in the X-office, Lobdell to me was minimally responsible for the plots on the X-books since they were so editorially driven, but what he was responsible for, dialogue, was IMMENSELY better than Chris Claremont’s dialogue. And I actually liked some of Jurgens Teen Titans work and Superman work. It’s just that their names to me aren’t enough to sell me on a book because their track records indicate that they’re more than willing to churn out editorially mandated dreck if asked. They aren’t the types of writers who would refuse to do that. So based on their names alone I am not sure what to expect. I don’t know if New Warriors Nicieza is showing up to write or X-Men Nicieza. Hopefully the former.

Sam Robards, Comic Fan

June 9, 2011 at 7:50 am

GL said:

“Since when is Nicieza bad? He’s one of the better 90s creators that moved onto one of Marvel best books (Cabel and Deadpool) and he was writing for DC before Harris became EIC.

There’s nothing bad about Capullo either, check out his DeviantArt gallery.”

I never said Nicieza or Capullo was bad. I was just pointing out that they are strong associated with early-mid 90’s Marvel.

Welp, the answer to the mystery of where J’onn is in the JL is that he’s in Stormwatch instead.

I think that’s silly to ruin the chance to do a proper Big 7 JLA reunion by putting J’onn in Stormwatch. Why not just do what they did back in the day when they had Flash serve on both Justice League Elite and Justice League America and what Marvel is doing now by having Luke Cage, Wolverine, and Spider-Man serving on multiple teams? Just have J’onn on Stormwatch AND JLA.

T., I do like Fabian Nicieza’s New Warriors. But I have problems with everything else he wrote. I think there is some innate brightness in the New Warrior’s characters that compensates for Nicieza’s usual writing tics. And there is also the basic Nicieza plot that he has used a dozen times: tragic bad guy with poorly defined psychic powers that causes the heroes to experience their greatest fears (or comfront their own darker selves), and ultimately the heroes realize that the bad guy just needs a hug and then everybody’s pain is healed or something.

As for Lobdell, really? I thought he was MORE verbose than Claremont, except he was, well, a bit boring. Claremont was talky but also had lots of stuff happening all the time. Truly, Lobdell lacked the Claremontisms and the BDSM fetish, but I suppose that only made him more boring. And man, did you ever read Lobdell’s final issue in the X-Men? Iceman versus Bastion? The WHOLE issue is one big speech by Iceman about tolerance and why bigots like Bastion suck. There is one page there that is all speech balloons. Iceman literarily talks the villain into defeat. It’s like Lobdell is doing a Claremont parody, but I have the sinking feeling it was no parody.

But it’s funny that I like Lobdell in Generation X. Perhaps because it’s was not so editorially-driven, and Lobdell’s emo writing works better (and looks less pathetic) with teen heroes.

Yeah, some of this looks crap, but if there’s a market for this stuff then fine.

Personally I’m happy with the DC “Dark” stuff and the rumoured Grant Morrison Superman title, so a few lame looking titles doesn’t bother me at all.

Rene –

The three Nicieza books I read were New Warriors, Thunderbolts and X-Men. Liked the first two, disliked the third. You seem to have read much more Nicieza than I did so you may be right.

And there is also the basic Nicieza plot that he has used a dozen times: tragic bad guy with poorly defined psychic powers that causes the heroes to experience their greatest fears (or comfront their own darker selves), and ultimately the heroes realize that the bad guy just needs a hug and then everybody’s pain is healed or something.

Wow, sounds like the same basic Wolfman Teen Titans plot that I hate. Which makes sense because I think I recall him being a big fan of New Teen Titans.

As for Lobdell, I read maybe a half dozen of his X-books but I found the dialogue much better. But then again, I REALLY hate Claremont’s dialogue tics. Love his plots, but hate the dialogue. I didn’t see anyone using terms like “Weather Witch,” “Psi Witch,” or anything “witch.” No “no quarter asked, non given.” No “your choice, your funeral.” And the jokes were better.

I eventually quit by X-tinction Agenda because I got frustrated and sick of all the convoluted mysteries so again, so you probably know better than me.

It’s just that their names to me aren’t enough to sell me on a book because their track records indicate that they’re more than willing to churn out editorially mandated dreck if asked. They aren’t the types of writers who would refuse to do that. So based on their names alone I am not sure what to expect.

Amen.

The one quality that every single announced writer has in common is that they are good soldiers. There are some super-talented that are good soldiers and some total hacks that are good soldiers. There are some up-and-comers, some solid pros and some folks whose best days are probably behind them. What is plainly missing are the pot-stirrers, or anyone that is going to chip in their own point-of-view unless they are directed to do so.

That could be a catchy motto. “DC: We do as we’re told.”

I think/hope there will be a lot of innovation in the dark line. Whether or not they sell is a different story.

"O" the Humanatee!

June 9, 2011 at 9:57 am

Just thought I’d throw into the mix something I haven’t personally read anywhere. My LCS guy said yesterday that he thinks these changes are mandated from higher up than the likes of Didio, Johns, Harras, or Lee – maybe Diane Nelson? That’s not to say that Didio et al. aren’t responsible for most of the execution of that mandate. (He also said he was “disappointed” with DC’s digital day-and-date plans, since he feels they will undermine retailers – but he wasn’t willing to go so far as “betrayed.”)

I agree with everybody who says that the creators on most of the new titles are mediocrities who will be good soldiers. (buttler: Love the motto!)

That said, I’m glad that there are some good writers who are sticking around, notably Cornell and Snyder.

T., I think Lobdell was not so bad at the beginning. You missed the worst of his excesses.

Gradually, the X-books started getting that “leading nowhere” vibe. Lot of issues with the characters just moping around in the X-mansion contemplating their navels. Say what will about Claremont, but at least his stories had plenty of action.

Scott Lobdell was kind of a pioneer, in a weird way. That kind of superhero series that you’ve read for six months and then you realize there is barely a fight? I think Lobdell may have started it.

So you had 3 issues of frantic, non-stop crossover action, and then 3 issues of moping around the mansion, then another crossover, another moping, another crossover.

I can’t say I miss him.

Rene – I see what you’re saying re: the soap opera dialogue, but as far as no action or forward plot movement happening between crossovers, I’m not sure how much of that is to blame on Lobdell and how much of that is to blame on editorial From what I understand, editorial created the big story beats that were meant to happen in the crossovers, so the writers usually just treaded water between the crossovers. That’s not to say that Lobdell isn’t responsible for a lot of the bad plotting, but rather that I’m not comfortable placing most of the blame on him.

You may be right. Lobdell isn’t completely to blame.

Still, writers like Peter David were able to do interesting stuff in the between-crossovers issues (then again, X-Factor was often less involved in the crossovers).

Still, writers like Peter David were able to do interesting stuff in the between-crossovers issues (then again, X-Factor was often less involved in the crossovers).

Peter David left specifically BECAUSE of how the crossovers screwed him over (specifically, he had stories to tell that kept getting bumped because of the crossovers. To make it up to him, they gave him a double-sized issue to wrap up his big “Legacy Virus as AIDs” storyline, only to then say, “Oops, sorry, we need that double-sized issue for another crossover.” That was the proverbial final straw).

Still, writers like Peter David were able to do interesting stuff in the between-crossovers issues (then again, X-Factor was often less involved in the crossovers).

Don’t forget, Peter David’s original X-Factor run during the Harras days only had to deal with one crossover, and it played a big part in driving him off the book. He was frustrated enough to leave by the time the next crossover rolled around. I think the books today, while still written by committee, are much more flexible and allow a lot more input from writers than they did in Harras’s day.

By the way, I’m not saying Lobdell may not indeed be as mediocre a plotter as you say. I’m just saying that so much of the X-office’s plotlines at that time were dictated by Harras and company that it’s hard to know how much plot to blame on him.

For example in one of Brian’s urban legends about Onslaught, I believe he was told that there was going to be an upcoming crossover in the coming year about a super badass called Onslaught, but he was given no info about who he was, what his power set was, what he looked like, nothing. Because editorial themselves hadn’t figured it out. So he wrote the story where Juggernaut gets punched and lands and just screams the word Onslaught, because he had absolutely nothing else to work with, not even enough to drop red herring clues. I imagine much of his run was like this, operating half in the dark, so it must have been hard to move many plotlines forward.

Jason Barnett

June 9, 2011 at 3:32 pm

I can’t believe they’re attempting to integrate a book like Stormwatch into the DCU. Frankly I think anti-heroes are pretty done anyway but with multiple Justice Leagues, The GLC, and even countries like China having superteams they wouldn’t be able to stay a secret and would be dealt with pretty heavily.

Well, Scott Lobdell’s Generation X was kind of good.

But even if the best possible interpretatio of Lobdell’s role in the 90’s X-Books turns out to be the correct one, it’s still strange for DC to assign a “kind of good” writer from the 1990s to their Teen Titans reboot.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 9, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Rene:

Funky, the ultimate proof of their mediocrity is this: even though they wrote the best-selling comics of that time, people still don’t consider those comics as authorial work. Probably anyone could have written Death of Superman or X-Force #1 and it would have sold just as many copies.

Maybe and probably.
But these were the guys who wrote those issues, and if you’ve got to re-launch a line, and please new corporate bosses, putting guys who you like working with, and who have all written comics that sold millions, isn’t the worst strategy ever.

T:

It’s just that their names to me aren’t enough to sell me on a book because their track records indicate that they’re more than willing to churn out editorially mandated dreck if asked. They aren’t the types of writers who would refuse to do that.

Which types of writers refuse?
Because honestly, it’s very rare the person wouldn’t just be replaced on the book if they did that.
Also, EVERYONE was doing what they were told in the 90’s – Warren Ellis wrote books with gimmicks and crossovers, Alan Moore did at Image, Morrison did in JLA – it was only really in the Jemas era where writers seemed to have any kind of power over editorial.

Rene:

But it’s funny that I like Lobdell in Generation X. Perhaps because it’s was not so editorially-driven, and Lobdell’s emo writing works better (and looks less pathetic) with teen heroes.

I think he had more control over the direction of the book, and also, he stuck to smaller scaled story lines.

T:

I eventually quit by X-tinction Agenda because I got frustrated and sick of all the convoluted mysteries so again, so you probably know better than me.

I got into comics after that point – just after X-Cutioner’s Song was my introduction to the X-Men.
Loved it till I figured out those mysteries had no end point.

For example in one of Brian’s urban legends about Onslaught, I believe he was told that there was going to be an upcoming crossover in the coming year about a super badass called Onslaught, but he was given no info about who he was, what his power set was, what he looked like, nothing.

Actually, I believe Lobdell just wanted to write a one-off story, and in it, Juggernaut had been beaten by someone named Onslaught – Lobdell was going to figure out the details later. THEN editorial decided it was going to be a huge big villain for a crossover.

That Teen Titans cover is disgusting. I like Bret Booth’s art but I have no interest in those characters. Why tarnish the name Teen Titans with that team?

FunkyGreenJerusalem

June 10, 2011 at 12:40 am

That Teen Titans cover is disgusting. I like Bret Booth’s art but I have no interest in those characters. Why tarnish the name Teen Titans with that team?

That’s not the actual cover.

But, the actual cover isn’t much of an improvement.

It is an improvement, though!

Ethan Shuster

June 10, 2011 at 6:14 am

Yep, I do agree that much of this looks like typical 1990s over-designed costumes. And the Teen Titans image (not the cover, I guess) is like some bad ’90s looks, but drawn better. If that makes sense.

Is this another company’s attempt to get teens to read comics, even though their readers are now mostly 35 year old men?

Why would someone want to mess with the Kid Flash costume? it’s one of the best designs of all time.

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