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CSBG Archive

Thoughts on DC’s Re-Organization of the “New 52″

As you might have heard by now, DC made a pretty clear statement today about how they will be handling the “DC Universe” in the foreseeable future. Their ongoing comics appear to be limited to 52 ongoings at a time, so if they launch a new title, that means a current title has to come to an end.

They are launching six new titles: Batman Incorporated, Dial H, Justice Society of America, World’s Finest, Ravagers and GI Combat.

Therefore, the six canceled titles are: OMAC, Mister Terrific, Static Shock, Men of War, Blackhawks and Hawk and Dove.

A few notes about these various moves…

1. When DC launched the new 52, they made a point to stress the diversity of the line. So it is notable that of the six canceled titles, they include two of their three titles starring African-American leads (four counting their African lead, Batwing) and their only Asian-American lead character.

2. With Justice Society and World’s Finest (which will star the Earth-2 Huntress and Power Girl), we also have total confirmation that Earth-2 exists. That should be interesting. It is cool to see Paul Levitz get a shot to write the original Huntress. And George Perez and Kevin Maguire swapping arcs? Awesome! Plus, it will be interesting to if James Robinson can re-create that Golden Age magic with the Justice Society (having a strong artist like Nicola Scott certainly helps!).

3. Ravagers brings Howard Mackie back to ongoing mainstream comic book work. The New 52 has seen a number of veteran writers return to regular work – Scott Lobdell, Ann Nocenti, Tom DeFalco and now Mackie.

4. China Miéville is going to be writing Dial H. It sounds like an interesting pitch.

I am sure you all have plenty of kneejerk reactions that you are dying to voice, so have at it! What are your thoughts on this announcement?

74 Comments

I just really wish they’d take Swamp Thing out of the DCU and put him back at Vertigo. :( Zero interest in the DCU other than watching to see if that ever happens. I was hopeful when I saw these headlines… oh well.

I am most looking forward to Dial H. It’s such a strong concept with so much potential, so hopefully it turns out great.

Also, with Huntress and Power Girl on Earth 1 (or whatever they call it) begin stranded from Earth 2 and part of the Legion also begin stranded in Legion Lost from the future, it looks like Earth 1 is a breeding ground for misguided travelers.

Dial H sounds interesting. I might check it out.

Not sure why they’re switching out one war book for another — since MoW was a 3.99 book, you’d think they could have worked this new stuff in through the back up stuff.

It’s nice to see that DiDio apparently didn’t “pull rank” for OMAC to survive (which I’d heard was the lowest seller, so presumably sales were a big factor in the cancellations).

The Earth 2 stuff makes me wonder if any of the other 52 worlds still exist. From what I heard, Tony Harris’s Whistling Skull will take place on one of the 52 worlds, and who knows about Morrison’s Multiversity.

If they are thinking that they’ll keep it to 52 ongoings, does that mean the new Batman Inc. is an ongoing? If so, will the book continue after Morrison’s run is over? Hmmm.

[...] read were two of the only books with black lead characters. (Two of only three in the new 52, according to CSBG.) One of them, Mister Terrific, let’s be honest was pretty dreadful. I’m not surprised. [...]

I’m not really sure what taking Swamp Thing out of the DCU really accomplishes except for unnecessarily isolating the character.

Minor point that whereas it seems like DC is “holding the line” at 52 titles — 6 out, 6 in — they haven’t said that’s their ongoing plan (thought someone said, maybe here, that was not necessarily the case). I don’t mind it, however, and I wonder whether DC could even reduce their number of titles even further. If they went down to 48 titles, would the internet cry “DC is dying!” such that they’re now effectively stuck with producing 52 series of one kind or another for the foreseeable future?

Surprised to hear Static Shock got canceled — I’m cynical enough that I figured Mr. Terrific and Batwing for the chopping block, but I thought Static was one of DC’s most recognizable African-American characters (what with the animated series). Granted, the book wasn’t very good.

But hey, China Mieville on Dial H? I’m there.

Not happy about OMAC being gone, I actually liked it. But the other 5 canceled titles failed to capture my interest…and my money, so I’m not particularly sorry to see them go, though I think Mr. Terrific and Static were just lost opportunities that got off to a poor start.

Of the new titles, Batman Incorporated, Dial H, Earth 2, and World’s Finest definitely have my interest. Not sure about Ravagers or GI Combat yet, though the latter has some interesting talent attached to it.

I’m actually pretty excited about the new G. I. Combat. The War That Time Forgot and Haunted Tank are both cool series (anyone know if they are using the WWII or the modern version of the Haunted Tank?) but what really has me stoked is the Jonah Hex team of Palmiotti and Gray writing an Unknown Soldier series. Again, I don’t know which version of the character they are writing, but I hope all three series are the WWII versions. I am buying this for sure.

Minor point that whereas it seems like DC is “holding the line” at 52 titles — 6 out, 6 in — they haven’t said that’s their ongoing plan (thought someone said, maybe here, that was not necessarily the case). I don’t mind it, however, and I wonder whether DC could even reduce their number of titles even further. If they went down to 48 titles, would the internet cry “DC is dying!” such that they’re now effectively stuck with producing 52 series of one kind or another for the foreseeable future?

True, they are not locked into it, but it seems a pretty darn good indication that they’re going to be sticking with the “52″ thing, right? I certainly don’t blame them. It’s their hook, after all.

I’m still thinking that the “Huntress” miniseries we’re reading has been starring the Earth-2 version all along.

I’m actually pretty excited about the new G. I. Combat. The War That Time Forgot and Haunted Tank are both cool series (anyone know if they are using the WWII or the modern version of the Haunted Tank?) but what really has me stoked is the Jonah Hex team of Palmiotti and Gray writing an Unknown Soldier series. Again, I don’t know which version of the character they are writing, but I hope all three series are the WWII versions. I am buying this for sure.

While I do love me some Palmiotti and Gray, I am holding off on making any judgments one way or another until we see the GI Combat book. After all, if you asked me if a Blackhawks comic book sounded good, I’d have told you “yes” but what we ended up getting was…well….quite different than what I hoped for (let’s leave it at that).

I’m still thinking that the “Huntress” miniseries we’re reading has been starring the Earth-2 version all along.

Very possible. I guess I should say more “looking forward to seeing Levitz work with the Earth-2 Huntress in all of her trappings – the Power Girl relationship and her parental ties, etc.”

[...] titles are: OMAC, Mister Terrific, Static Shock, Men of War, Blackhawks and … Read more on Comic Book Resources (function() {var s = document.createElement('SCRIPT'), s1 = [...]

“True, they are not locked into it, but it seems a pretty darn good indication that they’re going to be sticking with the “52? thing, right? I certainly don’t blame them. It’s their hook, after all.”

Or DC has stumbled into a great formula for keeping sales high. Every six months they’ll cancel underperformers and replace them with new number ones to lure the collectors into buying them.

I’m still thinking that the “Huntress” miniseries we’re reading has been starring the Earth-2 version all along.

I haven’t read it but how is her personality in it? Is it similar to the pre-Crisis Huntress or the post-Crisis one? And does this mean that the Earth-1 Huntress no longer exists?

I would hope that DC avoids some of the more unfortunate trappings of the Haunted Tank — the Stars and Bars, the glorification of J. E. B. Stuart — especially with two of the cancelled books being Mr. Terrific and Static.

Their track record on having enough of a clue to stay out of PR diversity embarrassment isn’t especially strong.

Of the five cancelled titles, I’m only reading one of them (OMAC), but of course it’s one of the DC titles I find most amazing! I wonder if a letter campaign al a Manhunter can save titles anymore? After all, I was under the impression that OMAC was rising on the sales charts over the last few months thanks to strong word of mouth.

On the flip side, I definitely am going to pick up all of the new #1′s (aside from Ravagers, which is part of that terrible “teen-galaxy” of the DCNu). But an ongoing Batman, Inc. and an ongoing JSA and ESPECIALLY more Peege sounds fantastic. However…. why can’t we get Amanda Connor on Peege? Alas…

I wasn’t sure if I was going to stick with Static Shock for much longer. I guess my decision has been made for me.

I will definitely get Batman Incorporated and probably Dial H, not sure what format. GI Combat sounds right up my alley, but the creative team holds no interest for me.

All OMAC series are cursed to be canned at #8. It’s a cosmic law.

It is beyond me why DC keeps using the ol’ time machine to go back into its past to find “new” creators. Here is a wild idea, why not let writers and artists make the book they want and see what happens? Too much editorial/corporate interference, I think, is really hurting comics.

I, too, was struck by the fact that the diversity of the DC Universe was on the chopping block with the cancelation of titles like Mister Terrific and Static Shock. Maybe it was an editorial decision, maybe it was purely a numbers game. But I hope DC continues to bring in new characters who reflect a greater diversity.

D Eric Carpenter

January 12, 2012 at 7:40 am

I agree with the idea the the current Huntress mini stars the Earth 2 version. There have been a few references to her fondness for cats as well as the Bat Shadow from the last issue or so that seems to indicate she’s got the Catwoman/Batman connection going.

Is anyone really surprised by the cancellations? Back when the New 52 titles were announced last year, we were all taking bets as to which ones would be gone within a year, and I think the titles being cancelled were all at the top of the list then.

It’s disappointing that DC is losing almost all their titles with minority characters, especially after the complaints Marvel has had about the same thing in recent months. But to me it just proves how poorly planned out this whole project has been from the start. Personally, I still think that DC is going to return to a pre-52 status quo–or at least reveal that the pre-52 universe is still out there–within a year or two.

As for the new titles, I’m definitely up for a title starring Power Girl and Huntress, even if Levitz’s version of the character isn’t the strongest. (I know, I know…)

I’m still wondering who Robinson is going to torture/maim/kill in the first issue of Justice Society to get his story rolling. I’m just guessing, but my bet would be on Stargirl.

I’m not a fan of Miéville’s prose work, but the concept behind Dial H does sound interesting.

On the whole, this New 52 is dull dull dull…. They had me with Crisis on IE and stole a share of my comic pie from Marvel back in ’85 but I’m not 14 anymore, so it’s a good thing I find it dull. I mostly read Omnibi of classic story lines, anything by PAD, Alan Moore and the occasional surprise, like Uncanny X-Force. I’m not DC’s target audience. I am guessing, but the only reason for such a reboot would be to attract new readers, and bring a few of the old back to a leaner, more inter-connected line. However, when I started reading comics both companies combined didn’t put out as many as 52 issues and only cost 60 cents.
It makes no sense to eliminate the baggage of a long lasting timeline only to instantly create a landfill of it in a new one that too inaccessible as it costs more than it’s worth. Am I supposed to invest $96 this year collecting Animal Man and Swamp Thing? What do I do next year during the Great Animal Vs. Vegetable War crossover, that reaches out from the star studded space adventures of the Green Lantern Corps, through the heart of The Justice League (“A Team Divided”) to the realms mystic with The Demon Knights (and don’t forget the 4 issue Justice Society mini on the veggie-mammalian connection that explains it all).
How much of my money do they want and what are they giving me? Like I said, I’m not their target audience, though I spend $200 a month on comics. I’d prefer to re-read my 14 hardcovers of X-Factor. Even having to deal with the confusing jumble that is the X-Universe, he has been able to tell a straight foward story throughout.

Dial H and JSA will be on my pull list. Interested in World’s FInest but as I have a limited budget, it will have to knock off some other title from my list.

None of those cancelled were on my pull list. Mr. Terrific was my favorite character in JSA and Checkmate but this book just wasn’t doing it for me. Is it too much to wish he’ll be in the new JSA as well? I had been planning to check out OMAC after all the good buzz.

Wow, World’s Finest sounds like someone at DC was specifically asking “Hmm, what would be MBloom’s dream comic?” All I know about it is what was in this blurb and it’s already one of my favorite DC titles.

Ravagers, on the other hand, I’m a little wary of. I really love the new Teen Titans book and generally enjoy Superboy (although I do feel that it hasn’t built off of its strong opening as well as it could have), but Howard Mackie has never been one of my favorite writers. I’ll need to see some previews before I decide whether or not to pick that one up.

I don’t have really high expectations for G.I. Combat, given that DC’s other New 52 war comics were among the books cancelled to make way for this new wave. I’m guessing it’s much more a case of “readers aren’t really interested in war comics” as opposed to “readers aren’t really interested in THESE war comics.” This one has some great creators on it, though, so I’m willing to be proven wrong.

Did their bizarre “52 fetish” start with the 52 miniseries, arbitrarily becoming obsessed with the number simply because it was the number of a series that was named that because of the number of weeks in a year? Or is there some actual reason that pre-dates that?

I’m surprised they don’t raise the prices of the books to $5.20 and make them 52 pages long.

Count me among the shocked that Red Lanterns wasn’t on that list.

Dial H! I’m in.

@Jase
“I’m not really sure what taking Swamp Thing out of the DCU really accomplishes except for unnecessarily isolating the character.”

It accomplishes that I don’t have to worry about crossovers into the DCU and characters running around that I don’t care about. I think Swamp Thing functions really really well in his own isolated corner of the universe. I just have no interest at all in DCU, and I know I will eventually be annoyed by trying to just read one book and keep blinders on to the rest. Editorial also seems to mostly leave Vertigo alone…

*fingers crossed* that he gets back to Vertigo soon!
(Same thing with I, Vampire… would like to read that book as well, but not in the context of the DCU)

Yes to Batman Incorporated & Dial H,

Will try first few issues of Earth 2 (depends on which version of Robinson is going to write it – talented one or Cry for JUSTICE’s one), World’s Finest (Levitz’s LoSH is unbearably dull but his Huntress mini is kinda ok), GI Combat (I usually like P&G and Arcudi stuff… too bad Krul is main writer).

No to Ravagers (Mackie!? Really?)

And aside of OMAC I really don’t care about cancelled titles. Tried all of them ( even though Liefeld & McDaniel’s art has ability to make my eyes bleed) but not single one of them get to my pull list.

“it is notable that of the six canceled titles, they include two of their three titles starring African-American leads”

I don’t think it is, really. They didn’t sell, they got cancelled. Now if DC never ever tries another minority-led book ever, pointing to these and saying “Hey, we tried, nobody wanted them”, that MIGHT be notable. I’m betting that’s not going to happen. If they have another strong idea, they’ll try it.

People complained that the last run of Blue Beetle was kept going far longer than most people thought it deserved (not me), claiming it was due to them wanting to shove a minority character down our throat. So if they kept these books alive, THAT’D be seen as part of an agenda; instead, people will choose to see their cencellation as part of an agenda. flip a coin.

The goal is for everybody to be treated equally, including projects. If books don’t sell, they get canned. That’s fair.

Could they have tried to market them more to other places? Maybe. But they chose to market the new line as a whole. Again, don’t see that as being done on purpose to hurt one book over another.

Solely for the reading pleasure of a couple of lukewarm comic book fans I know, I read all of the 52 #1 issues and provided some thoughts on each one in the hopes that they might be excited enough to start reading a title or two on a regular basis. I ranked them each week and after all 52 issues had been released, ranked them all. In other words the same type of thing that every comic fan with a blog or access to a message board did in September and October. So when I reviewed the cancellations, I was interested to find that four of the six cancelled titles were very low on my list of #1 issues.

Hawk and Dove was, by far, the worst title I read of the New 52. I ranked it #52. Mister Terrific #49, Men of War was #47, and Static Shock was #46. I went into these with an open mind, and I feel I ranked them as objectively as I could. It seems that I was probably in the majority.

I find the Blackhawks cancellation interesting. I ranked it at #25 — the middle of the pack as far as I was concerned. Not a bad book, but not a great book. Perhaps there wasn’t enough of a hook for it garner a larger readership.

Like a few others, I ranked O.M.A.C. highly. It was #10. I really liked it, but even before it was published, I knew from the results of CBR’s survey that it was going to struggle to find an audience. I’m sorry to see it go, but I’m not really surprised.

As for the new titles, I wasn’t a big DC reader prior to the relaunch, so I don’t have much (or anything) invested in Batman, Inc. Morrison may need to dumb it down at first so that newbies like me understand what’s going on. Earth-2 and World’s Finest sound interesting enough for me to check them out. Also, I’ll check out Ravagers based on the strength of Churchill’s recent work. Marineman was awesome! Dial H doesn’t sound like my bag though and I’m being cautious about G.I. Combat as Ariel Olivetti’s work is really (really!) not to my taste. The back-up features intrigue me much more.

I’m really gonna miss OMAC it was way too much fun and the art was superb. Unfortunately I dont think any of the new titles are going to get my money. I mean, G.I. Combat might’ve made it, I loved the old stuff, but then they gave it to Krull so oh well

HAWK AND DOVE! CANCELLED? No!

This is really smart on a couple levels.

First, the discipline of “six in, six out” is a good one. Too many lower rung titles become running jokes. Cutting them quickly and as a group sends a message thatt DC isn’t going to hang with titles the market rejected. It is a bummer that Static Shock is in that group, but it was not very well done.

Second, using “seasons” to debut new titles is an extremely good idea. There is no way that we’d be talking about most of theses titles had they rolled out individually. It is a great way to get some attention directed toward non-standard fare.

Pesrsonally, I will probably buy the first issue (at least digitally) of everything except Ravagers. Both DIAL H FOR HERO and THE WAR THAT TIME FORGOT are concepts that could do well in updates. I am not sure why DC is giving JT Krul another shot after his run of flops, but maybe their faith will finally be rewarded.

Putting James Robinson in the od Roy Thomas seat strikes me as a good idea. Nicole Scott is a nearly ideal partner. Huntress and Power Girl as a team is such a no brainer that I cannot believe it has taken this long. Paul Levitz comeback as a writer has been underwhelming so far, but his old Helena Wayne stories were terrific.

The other minor down note is the call for “more Batman” before the first year of the new 52 has run. It is not a confident move, but at least BATMAN, INC. is sure to be good.

Has anyone else noticed that Ravagers sounds exactly like Avengers Academy? Super powered teens trained to be villains, might turn out to be heroes.

I don’t understand why they are cancelling a war book, Men At War, and replacing it with another one, GI combat.

The only real surprise in the cancellation is Static Shock, which sounded like a sure thing. How did they mess it up, I wonder?

As for the others: war books are a tough sell these days, Hawk & Dove mainly seemed to have Rob Liefeld as a selling point (polarizing as that is), Mister Terriffic was a gamble, and OMAC struck me from the start as Didio wanting to have some fun.

I do agree that keeping it at 52 is probably not the best idea, because the first time they change their line-up to *not* feature 52 books, people will read way too much into it.

@ Doron:

If you assume that your target market is males 18-34, then you look at what other media they are consuming. Number one on your list is video games. One of the major video game categories is war (Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six and others unaffiliated with Tom Clancy). There is reason to believe that you could have a hit war property outside the Direct Market that could scale to multiple platforms. Plus, DC has a ton of war themed IP to be exploited.

It makes total sense.

What doesn’t make sense is that aren’t making the same effort in other genres, like fantasy (Stalker, Klaw), or sci-fi (Adam Strange) or even humor. Also, developing a non-superhero franchise is never going to work with back-bench talent. They should be throwing money at Garth Ennis and letting him do whatever he wants.

1. Any word when Gail Simone gets her second book?

2. How long until Lucien Gates gets brutally murdered and replaced by a returning Ray Terrill?

Too bad Static Shock is out. And too bad Graham Nolan is out of a regular work.

@Dean Hacker

All good points. Still I believe the Modern Warfare or Battlefield players didn’t decide to not purchase Men at War, but instead probably never knew about it. Replacing it with another war comic written by a bottom shelf writer is not going to help things. But maybe I am wrong.

Also I would kill for an Adam Strange book.

No surprise that JSA is getting re-launched. That was only a matter of time.
I can’t believe they’re doing Dial H, though I like it.
It looks like a war genre swap between GI Combat and Men of War.
It’s disappointing that they’re dropping three minority titles. I especially like Mr. Terrific (in spite of the name) and think he has potential, if handled properly.

Jeremy Aron Patterson.

January 12, 2012 at 10:45 am

I am pissed that the Global Guardians are not included among the second wave!

Jeremy.

To comment on a earlier comment by BeccaBlast:

I would extremely disappointed if they DIDN’T have the Confederate trappings of the original Haunted Tank. Otherwise, we’re getting the Gulf War M1 version that we got over in Vertigo which was… mediocre to say the least. If we want to talk diversity, even the Haunted Tank had Gus, a black guy, as their loader (and later second gunner) and there was no racial conflict. He was a valued crew member that served through the end of the war.

Yes, historically, there was racial discrimination in WWII. This isn’t reality. This is a comic. I just want a good story with the characters that I grew up reading and without getting it tramped and neutered in the guise of being politicially/racially/socio-economically/whathaveyou correct.

@doron

I would kill with you for a Adam Strange comic

“True, they are not locked into it, but it seems a pretty darn good indication that they’re going to be sticking with the “52? thing, right? I certainly don’t blame them. It’s their hook, after all.”

Brian,

I brought this up another board, reacting to this story but with this news of six cancellation quickly replaced with six new titles to keep the total at 52 it’s become somewhat apparent to me, that DC could easily be setting itself about to produce book-like comics (similar to the price & format of the aforementioned L&R) and release a new book every week. Hence the 52 titles for the year’s 52 weeks.

I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking that this (now) archaic practice of pumping out 22 page stories every month and charging upwards of $4 can’t possibly last. Especially with the addition of the digital format emerging as another venue. Let’s face it, about the only reason the monthly comic continues to exist is to keep comic shops alive.

Doesn’t make an odd kind of sense that DC could be “testing the waters” right now, seeing what characters/formats are working and what’s not. Then eventually they could release a 50-100 book at maybe the $12.99-$14.99 format and price each week. One week Superman, the next Green Lantern, the next JLA, etc…

This way, a DC fan/reader who may spend $15 each week on 4-5 DC comics could spend the same amount for a larger, complete story book. I think readers would be more apt to buy more diverse books this way.

Course, I could be completely wrong…..

Is 52 Dan DiDio’s lucky number?

I’m actually looking fordward to all of these new titles except for GI Combat.

I will miss OMAC. A fun comic with great art, just like the olden days!

Fordward? Sorry for the typo.

I would love to buy G.I. Combat, but I don’t think you could pay me at this point to pick up a JT Krul comic, so I’ll be skipping it. Sorry to see OMAC is cancelled. It and Batman are by far my 2 favorite titles of the new 52.

Out of the cancelled titles, did any of them have more than 1 creative team on them? Kind of hard to judge whether a war comic is really a tough sell, or if people just didn’t like that specific team’s take on it. Same with Mr Terrific and Static Shock. Seems like if they really want to promote diversity in the DCU they would at least try switching up the creative teams on those books and see if the result is any different.

You know, until other people started pointing it out, I hadn’t noticed that DC had cancelled 2 of their 4 titles with a black lead. Then again i immediately think of Static as the cool kid from the TV show and Mr Terrific as the smart guy who used to run the JSA as opposed to thinking of either of them as “black superheroes” first, and everything else second.

The new Static was a wasted opportunity. I’d've swapped the original art teams for Static and Green Arrow. Virgil needs the cleaner art that Jurgens can do, while Scott’s frantic art style could have better hidden how little was going on in GA. :/

OMAC was great. A pox on everyone that didn’t read it because Didio wrote it. >:(

The other four canned books were crap. Who cares if they go.

Of the new lot, I’m down for:

Batman Inc. Natch

Dial H. The previous attempt at this series “Hero” was one of the better revampings i’ve ever seen in comics. If this comes close to that one, it’ll be a hit.

World’s Finest. Levitz can write the Huntress very well, and two of the best artists ever on comics will be drawing it.. Total buy.

Earth 2. My JSA collection includes singles of the 70s run of All-Star Comics and every Archive, mini or ongoing after that. I’m in.

I’ll give G.I. Combat a go. I love all of the originals, so hopefully this isn’t the dud that Men of War turned out to be.

I’ll pass on the other one. I already dropped Titans and Superboy, no reason to grab their companion book too.

Surprised more of you aren’t “balls to the wall” excited that China Mieville’s writing a book. I’m fairly new to him, just finished his two Bas-Lag books, Perdido and Scar. In reading them I thought, with his imagination and depth, he’d be great in this medium. Can’t wait to see the visuals.

I am not a big fan of Dan Didio overall, but even I can admit his OMAC was great.

I predict an unexpected backfiring that will occur from this reboot is that while a linewide jumping on point has a lot of potential for bringing in new readers, it also provides a chance for a linewide jumping off point as well for everyone, new and old readers included.

I’m bummed that O.M.A.C. is cancelled as it was one of the best titles they put out and honestly, one of the riskier titles given the character. However, China Melville as writer on DIAL H is pretty damned exciting news – and I’m all for G.I. COMBAT — which hopefully could include the characters from MEN AT WAR on a backup arc somewhere along the line.

I am slightly shocked that titles like CATWOMAN and RED HOOD & THE OUTLAWS are still being published though.

Six titles I didn’t buy have been cancelled, and I love the concepts for the six new books. This didn’t work out for me at all! Except that I will get more fun stories.

It is really interesting that DC has latched onto the “52″ number and are now effectively tying themselves to that number of DCU titles. I bet all the writers will be paying attention to sales figures over the next six months. I expect some massive stunts this summer.

According to the December sales figures, Catwoman and Red Hood are both doing pretty well, actually. They are listed at #39 and #41 on the sales chart, or #21 and #23 among DC’s New 52 books, making them solid mid level performers. Catwoman sold 41k copies in December, while Red Hood sold 39k. Both titles outsold Daredevil, Mighty Thor, Secret Avengers and Wolverine. These are Diamond distribution numbers, of course, so they only reflect the direct market, but there it is.

http://www.comichron.com/monthlycomicssales/2011/2011-12.html

Well Static would have been a great book if it had a better writer and artist, just took it of my pull list yesterday, Mr. Terrific was crap, OMAC was apparently good but I wasn’t into it, Hawk and Dove sucked, Men of War was clearly going to be cancelled, and Blackhawks wasn’t my type of book and kinda was bad but I though it was doing a little better. In all OMAC was the only one that should have continued, and Static needed a major retooling. All the others I don’t care much about. As for the new books I’ll pick up Earth 2 for sure and test out the others, but I probably won’t get World’s Finest or GI Combat.

Batman Incorporated? JSA? Power Girl? China Mieville’s Dial H For Hero? I am grinning like an idiot right now. If DC replaces Red Hood and the Outlaws with a Cass Cain series drawn by Amanda Conner, I will take it as evidence that Bob Harras is stealing my thoughts. :)

Maybe it was an editorial decision, maybe it was purely a numbers game.

It’s a numbers game. 5 of them were the lowest selling titles of the new 52…The only surprise is that Captain Atom, as the 6th lowest selling title, didn’t get cancelled. Hawk & Dove took that spot. There’s a thread at CBR’s DC forum that’s been discussing the “bottom rung” for a while now.

A lot of titles that people are surprised weren’t cancelled, (Batwing, Red Lanterns), have decent sales. There’s no need to be surprised.

And for the record, all six titles were selling under 18,000 by ICV2′s numbers.

Brian, you state “They are launching six new titles: Batman Incorporated, Dial H, Justice Society of America, World’s Finest, Ravagers and GI Combat.”

To me, that looks like they are RE-launching six OLD titles. Big difference. Instead of giving us something totally new, once again they are regurgitating old properties, with a new look.

For the rest of eternity DC has sentenced us to seeing infinite iterations of titles like World’s Finest, GI Combat, the Losers, Unknown Soldier, Justice League, House of Mystery, Secret Six, Birds of Prey, All-Star Western, My Greatest Adventure, etc., not to mention the individual super-hero titles. I’d say they’re stuck in a big rut.

Out of the cancelled titles I was only reading Static, and I did think it sucked. Sucks harder that they didn’t just change the creative team or something though.

I’m glad that DCOmniverse responded to my post, because it gives me a chance to clarify my point — and he was polite and respectful about it, so we oughta be able to avoid a flame war. Ain’t that nice when that happens?

The original HT had everything you said — my point was only that bringing that back, especially in the context of cancelling Mr. Terrific and Static, would give DC an appearance of insensitivity, which they have blundered into often enough. Appearances and juxtaposition is usually all it takes to get people screaming; then nobody listens.

I was unaware of an updated Tank — and I thought the animated one, from Brave and the Bold, with Stuart himself driving and the Tank somehow playing “Dixie” was a riot — but it sounds more like a badly executed plan, rather than an inferior one. Do we really need the Stars and Bars to have a Haunted Tank? Stuart was a deeply flawed hero at best, like any person who is very good at warfare. Wasn’t the series really Stuart and his descendent coming to grips with that? If done rightly, this could be as good as Enemy Ace.

Of course, if it doesn’t sell, in eight months DC will probably dig up the GI Robot — but thanks for listening!

randypan the goatboy

January 12, 2012 at 6:44 pm

I have to admit no amount of shock about Hawk and Dove. When i originally saw the name “rob liefeld” on the project I looked up to see the vultures. I was going to be generous and give it a full year…I love to be surprised. i have to admit that i was expecting a few cries of racism over the sole blue superhero having his book cancelled. The blue man is constantly being held back by the man and as a fellow “blueball” i am sick of it…In all seriousness i was surprised about static shock…i just thought that book would sell/ the character has survived for a lot longer than any other character in the dakota verse and with him having his own show once i just assumed a following for a hero with that kind of stamina

So, the New 52 body count starts!

Which will be the last New 52 book standing in 6 or 7 years, still keeping the numbering from September 2011? Probably one of the core big books like JLA or a Batbook, but place yer bets now!

@ Nigel Wolford:

All DC really is a big pile of old titles (or I.P.) that can be used in different media, including comics. Smart creators have been saving the new stuff for titles that they own for a couple decades. It is hard to blame them when looking at the cases of Siegel & Shuster, Jack Kirby and the rest. “New” characters have mostly been limited to derivative properties, like Spider-Man’s clone and Batman’s third-cousin-on-his-Mother’s-side-but-with-an-attitude.

The problem is that good, new(er) ideas rarely have any life beyond their original creators interest in them.

DC has attempted to freshen their line through buying defunct properties over the years. They bought the Fawcett line (the Marvel Family), the Quality line (Plastic Man, Blackhawks), the Charlton line (Blue Beetle, the Question, Captain Atom and Nightshade), the Wildstorm line (WildC.A.T.S., The Authority) and the Milestone line (Static Shock, Xombie). The problem is that very few of those properties were sold at anywhere near their sales, or creative, peaks. Worse, DC has had a scattershot approach to merging them into their line. None of them have been big hits in their home, but at least they were new-ish blood.

You would have thought that the “New 52″ relaunch would have been an opportunity to re-think how all those unrelated characters could work together as a universe, but I have not seen the slightest indication of that.

Well count me in the pro “Jeb Stuart” haunted tank catagory. Unless you want to take a Vietnam era Sheridan and have Phil’s ghost complaining about how crappy a tank it was. :-)

Two things:

1) No shock here at all as to which titles are cancelled, as there was no way something like Men of War, no matter how good it may be, was going to stick in this current market.

b) Howard Mackie is back? Really? The 90s have truly set in.

I can’t wait to read the internet outrage in ten years when Chuck Austen is writing books again.

“1. When DC launched the new 52, they made a point to stress the diversity of the line. So it is notable that of the six canceled titles, they include two of their three titles starring African-American leads (four counting their African lead, Batwing) and their only Asian-American lead character.”

It’s notable in that they are peddling the same old lies as they have for decades, and executing them exactly the same way

@Dean Hacker

“You would have thought that the “New 52? relaunch would have been an opportunity to re-think how all those unrelated characters could work together as a universe, but I have not seen the slightest indication of that.”

How they work together is that they all appear in books under TW/DC’s logo and then eventually crappy movies come out about some the characters and money goes from people’s pockets into the pockets of TW/DC

@Michael

“You know, until other people started pointing it out, I hadn’t noticed that DC had cancelled 2 of their 4 titles with a black lead. Then again i immediately think of Static as the cool kid from the TV show and Mr Terrific as the smart guy who used to run the JSA as opposed to thinking of either of them as “black superheroes” first, and everything else second.”

Look at Martin Luther King, Jr. here, solving all of DC Comics’ terrible race problems in one fell swoop. Why . . . there were never any problems to begin with! It was all a dream

@Vinnie Bartilucci

“The goal is for everybody to be treated equally, including projects. If books don’t sell, they get canned. That’s fair.”

The problem is that the current strategy for DC and Marvel alike is more of the same, tons of it, and so they now cater almost exclusively to a shrinking audience that is frightened of anything else, and that audience will never desire anything new, so they’ve effectively prevented themselves from moving their books out of the 1970s

Personally, a lot of this news is good for me., For one, I’m a huge JSA/Earth-2 fan, so TWO books set in that universe/with those characters means I’ll probably end up picking them up for a while. Next, the Ravagers book interests me despite Howard Makie being attached to write; for one, I like Ian Churchill, and second is that I’ve been really enjoying the Lobdell trio of books, and something that adds to them would be great. I’ll try this book out for a while, and depending on quality and how much it ties into the other teen hero books, I may continue to get it. And while I had absolutely no interest in the pre-relaunch Batman Inc, this new version has me interested if only for Chris Burnham’s art. Plus, I’ve been getting all four Batman titles so far, so why not a number 5?

Finally, H&D getting cancelled is awesome! Not that I dislike Liefeld (hell, when people bring up his “controversial” status, I’m in the much smaller group that loves his art), but because he’s going to a book more suited to him – Deathstroke, the character that Rob’s most famous creation, Deadpool is based on. This seems like the perfect book for his style of art AND writing. For one, he’s the violent anti-hero, which seems to be Rob’s favorite archtype, and the only he writes decently. Second, Rob’s at his best drawing tons of gaudy details, equipment/armor, guns and knifes – something the character’s had since Perez first designed him. Next, Rob’s always wanted to do a Teen Titans book, and since DS is their #1 villain, I may end up getting another tie-in into the Lobdell teen-books. Finally, I’m hoping Art Thibert will stay on as inker using his old school style, and thus a lot less scratchy looking. I tried the first few issues of this book out, but I found them incredibly bland despite all the action. Say what you will about his art, but I’ve always thought Rob knew how to do an action comic.

@Schmakt: Damn, i hate hipsters

I hope they take Hulk out of Marvel as i really don’t give a fuck about 99% of the Marvel characters.

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