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The I’ds of March 2012

The concept is this, for the Ides of March, I tell you things that I’d have done in certain comics!!

But don’t worry, I’m not talking about simple 20/20 hindsight things like pick a famous bad storyline and just say, “I wouldn’t have done that.”

No, I mean more like tweaks and nudges, stuff like that.

You can check out past years’ I’ds to see what I’m talking about, or just read on!

First off, my #1 “I’d” from last year was for there to be a Fables spotlight series. Well, guess what, there is a Fables spotlight series out now! Woohoo! I guess I best use my “I’d” power wisely!

I’d add Robotman to the cast of Frankenstein, Agent of SHADE

Matt Kindt did an amazing job on Robotman in My Greatest Adventure. So if he is taking over Frankenstein, Agent of SHADE, then he should bring Robotman with him. He would fit in perfectly to the weird tone of Frankenstein. Do it, Matt, I know you want to!

I’d return the original Amanda Waller

I really just don’t get the concept of re-doing Amanda Waller. She was perfect as she was. I would not have taken away one of her most distinct feature, the fact that she was a badass big black woman.

I’d explore the faculty of Wolverine and the X-Men a bit more

One of the consistent problems with the X-Books in general is that there are just so many goddamn characters in the books, even with them split into two groups now. So I appreciate the difficulty Jason Aaron has in juggling so many characters, and really, I loves me some Wolverine and the X-Men, but I’d like to see Aaron explore more of the faculty of the school. The main faculty get a slightly disproportionate share of the book’s focus, I think.

I’d have a crossover in the DC Universe

I am not always the biggest fans of company-wide crossovers, but I’d like to see the various members of the DC Universe interact just so we can get a sense of how they all interconnect. Who remembers what of who? I am curious!

I’d bring back Daniel Killgore’s roommate in Haunt

Obviously, Joe Casey is going for essentially a complete break from what Haunt was before he took over, which is totally fine. Haunt is an interesting comic. However, I think it’d be interesting to keep one aspect of the old series around, namely Daniel’s nerdy but pretty quirky roommate around. She could work as a nice common contrast to the rest of the craziness of the book.

I’d make Static a Titan again

Now that his book is over, DC can’t just let Static fade into limbo! Add him into the Titans!

I’d bring Candace Nelson back.

Candace Nelson, Foggy’s younger sister, hasn’t been killed yet (at least I don’t believe she has) and come, Foggy’s younger sister who dated Matt Murdock! How is that not a good character to have running around as a supporting cast member in Daredevil? Come on, Mark, you know you want to do it!

My pal, Graeme Burk, wrote in with an I’d he’d like me to mention. Here is Graeme’s “I’d”…

I’d have had two Wonder Woman books in the New 52

The New 52 relaunch gave us a new take on Wonder Woman by Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang. Steeped in mythological lore and horror, it’s a dark, intense book that’s definitely has a specific take on Wonder Woman.

But I think DC missed a trick. Just as they have Superman and Action Comics giving different takes on Superman (indeed different time periods for Superman) and Batman, Detective Comics, The Dark Knight and Batman and Robin doing different types of Batman stories they should have had two Wonder Woman books.

So we’d have Wonder Woman, with the darker, mythological, T+ rated, version we currently have and Sensation Comics, which has a more superheroic take on the character, with battles with the Cheetah, Dr. Psycho, Silver Swan et al. A little less intense, maybe even a little funnier (or even quirky), more for the all-ages stream of readers.

It would have not had put all its eggs in one basket, so to speak, with a specific interpretation of a tentpole character of the DC Universe, allowed DC’s premier heroine to have exposure in a book not steeped in blood that under-12s could read and, frankly, given us another book with a strong female character, which has been a deficiency of the new 52 to begin with.

I asked you folks on Twitter for your I’d suggestions. Here are a few…

Candy Dax

I’d love to see black canary introduced to the green arrow series (not to say its already amazing)

Alex Hern

I’d have Jessica Drew in USM examine more the fact that she IS Parker.

Ryan Fisher

I’d make Nightwing blue again!

Beau Rossel

I’d give Daredevil a different job. Maybe a private detective or legal consultant to a large corporation.

Now you all share your I’d’s in the comments section!

41 Comments

I’d take Power Girl’s new costume and reverse the leggings and sleeves – full sleeves, bare legs. It would break up all the white and make her costume look less plain.

sandwich eater

March 15, 2012 at 4:50 pm

I’d limit all characters to one ongoing series each. (They could have 2 if one was an all-ages title outside the core continuity.)

I’d have “Elf with a gun” shoot Gambit square in the face.

Expanding on your comments regarding Wolverine and the X-Men, there are plenty I’ds I have for Jason Aaron. I’d have him realize that just because he’s doing a Marvel X-Book, doesn’t mean he should go completely over the top and avoid any dramatic weight. I’d also have him tone down the self-conscious wackiness of concepts like the pre-pubescent Hellfire Club and “Planet Sin”, which become more annoyingly stupid than endearingly stupid. And I’d have him focus more on the faculty, but I’d also have him develop the students beyond their comedic stereotypes ( For example, Idie as politely referring to mutants as monsters, Kid Gladiator as being an arrogant bully, Quentin Quire as being snarky but ultimately having that heart of gold, etc.)

I really want to like the book, because I’ve enjoyed Jason Aaron’s work elsewhere and it has two excellent artists. But it’s not coming together, sadly.

I’d agree with Graeme on the 2 WW book thing. Hell, do a third one with WW2 stories (if that’s still in the mythos anywhere).

I’d make it so most Marvel and DC stuff interests me again. It just hasn’t lately.

I’d finally work on my damn want lists and go hunting. (Ok, that’s totally my own personal thing.)

I’m pretty sure Static is being added to the Titans. He’s already shown up as Red Robin’s tech guy. (Still hate that name. Superheroes should not share names with burger joints.)

Oh, and I’d have X-Factor Investigations research who Hope’s biological parents were.

I’d make the new 52 Superman likeable. I understand that he’s supposed to be a quiet loner, but where he used to be bland, now he’s bland and unlikeable.

I’d have DC publish some all-ages superhero books. Hell, I’d have them publish books for different age groups. They’ve already sectioned off the nDCU into grouping, give each grouping a aging.

I’d have Marvel and DC both start offering decent creator packages. The last interesting new characters in the Marvel U were from the 70s… that’s ridiculous. I’d love to see some vibrancy re-enter the mix. And that means making it worth the creators’ whiles.

Sorry, having one of those days.

On a more upbeat note, more in keeping with the spirit of this post, I would have kept Jim Wilson around as a usable character in the Hulk books. Lots of potential insights and storylines there that could have been used over a longer period of time than what they did.

On the DC side of things, I would have made this whole New52 thing just a small corner in their already existing Multiverse that we’re only seeing now because of Flashpoint and eventually their real characters will be coming back.. Can I still hope this is what will really happen? Please? Come on, throw me a bone…

I’d have Wally West, ya know, exist.

What I’d do is something that seriously needs to be done with modern comics so that they can actually GET BACK into the mainstream economy and public eye:

Commandment #1: Cut the bloodlust and the ‘sex sells’.

Commandment #2: Drop the necrophilia. I want a moratorium on character deaths for a while, I am so SICK of character deaths without meaning.

Commandment #3: Make the male and female characters STAND UP STRAIGHT instead of ending up in various T&A poses all the time.

Commandment #4: Re-emphasize the ratings on a book’s cover so the right level of book gets into the hands of the right reader.

Commandment #5: Get comics back on the newsstands of grocers, toy stores and drugstores, but not just any comics, the kind that’s a perfect fit for the kids with their parents.

Commandment #6: End the archaic and draconian ‘work-for-hire’ aspect of the comics industry and put something more beneficial to both companies AND creators in place–the co-ownership deal. The company owns half, the creator owns half. It’s as simple as that. It also applies to contributions made by a creator to a long-running character’s mythos.

Commandment #7: I’d draw up some ground rules for comic book events, with chief among them being that each would only be put out EVERY FOUR YEARS. The schedule of the Olympics, basically. AND I’d also enforce the following: a) They finish within the year, b) the tie-ins must be few in number AND actually add something to the story, and c) The big bag of the story MUST fall, AND there must be reprocussions from said event that LAST.

Commandment #8: I’d ensure an equal male-female creator ratio at all times, not out of tokenism, but out of a desire for equilibrium in storytelling. Also, I’d order them to check their egos at the door.

Commandment #9: I’d make it a priority to market not primarily one, not two–but EVERY character in the stable.There’s an audience out there for every character, that is a true fact. To do so: supplement the main line of comics with “Who’s Who” or “Handbook”-style books that are updtated every year. Make the advertising work on different levels, that actually ENCOURAGES people to seek the books out.

Commandment #10: I’d ask comic shops to work WITH us to make the industry grow and flourish, and that they need to do their part to make it happen. Stop scalping books, clean their places up a bit more, be friendly and helpful with customers, etc.

At DC:

I’d put Animal Man in Orange/Blue with the Black leather jacket again. It’s just an aesthetic thing; it works for me more than white/blue. That’s literally my only complaint with that title.

I’d Blue and Gold it up over in JLI. No reason not to have Ted working as some sort of JLI PR guy/financier a la MaxiPad Lord.

I’d put together a new Seven Soldiers of Victory title: let’s drop Frankie from the group as well as Zat and Shining Knight… add Kate Spencer, maybe Garth (as Tempest) and the newer Crimson Avenger. Cut Red Lanterns from the 52 and give the SSoV to Marc Andreyko.

I’d do this. Ethan Van Sciver. Plastic Man.

At Marvel:
I’d bring back the Exiles. I miss ‘em (the good version of the team: Mimic, Morph, Blink).

I’d churn out more in the saga of Earth X. Again, I miss it. It was fun, it was epic in scope, it had lots of cosmic-level awesome going down, and I loved loved LOVED the Earth X Daredevil.

I’d can a Captain America title, X-Men Legacy, Avenging Spider-Man, an Avengers title, an Iron Man title… let’s consolidate!

I’d offer a very special contract to whoever could convince Peter David to write a Great Lakes Avengers ongoing.

At other companies:
I’d tell Image to make Kirkman write more Invincible. Make it a monthly, not a “well, whenever”ly.

I’d tell Dark Horse to use their BioWare licenses to write a Mass Effect ongoing not related to the game storyline. Just have some Citadel fun with a talented writer.

I’d get Garth Ennis to do more Boys, especially Wee Hughie. That sounded wrong. Forget it.

I am not always the biggest fans of company-wide crossovers, but I’d like to see the various members of the DC Universe interact just so we can get a sense of how they all interconnect. Who remembers what of who? I am curious!

The problem is most of the people at DC are curious about how everything interconnects as well, since it’s one of the biggest rush jobs in history. Superboy existed before, no wait, now he’s brand new because we can’t fit him into the timeline. Martian Manhunter was in the League, wait, it’s already been contradicted. Teen Titans existed, no wait, they didn’t ever exist before after all.

I’d have them flesh out a bible for the individual books first before even thinking of doing a crossover.

I’d save the “Batman: Brave and the Bold” comic from cancellation and give it the kind of marketing the New 52 books have been getting. I’d have similar books for all of the DCU’s heavy hitters, including the JL, and an “All Star Comics” series that would feature different characters that couldn’t sustain a series on their own. There really needs to be a full line of kid-friendly DC books, not just one or two, and they need to some marketing muscle put into them. I’d reprint several issues at once in digest-size collections on a monthly basis, also utilizing the vast backlog of similar material such as “The Batman Adventures,” and do whatever it took to get them displayed on the racks by the checkout counters at grocery stores just like the Archie digests are. The “kid-friendly” books are often much better than the “real” DCU books anyway, and they would sell better than such titles do if they had anywhere near the support the main DCU books get.

@Drunken Fist
EXACTLY!!!! The only “kid-friendly” line of comics they’re making right now are just a bunch of bits based on Cartoon Network Shows: Looney Tunes, Cartoon Network Action Pack, and Scooby-Doo. That’s it. It’s demeaning!

I’d bring trunks back to the DCnU.
I’d age Damien to 14-15 and change up his costume a little.
I’d give Static another chance with a different creative team. Loved his guest-shot in Teen Titans, so maybe just add another teen book to Lobdell’s plate.
I’d give Vibe and his kid brother their own title.
I’d resurrect Zatanna’s old title virtually intact.
I’d add Icon to the JLI as the ‘Superman of Africa’
I’d bring back Wally as Flash’s partner, somehow. Not as Kid Flash but a new ID; probably Quicksilver, Impulse, Reflex, something like that.

I’d zip up catwoman’s costume
I’d put Zuriel and Etrigan together
I’d bring back Justice League Elite and make Cass a member.
I’d find ways for characters to reveal things about themselves that dont rely on touching a magic lassoo
I’d make Klarion the witch boy and Kamandi team up
I’d have Squire and Spoiler go on a romp through Europe.
I’d have Damien tell everyone who stupid Earth 2 Flash’s costume is
I’d explore the city of Vanity
I’d have Franzer Irving draw some pirate ghost stories

I’d start a new volume of Xombi.
I’d give Martian Manhunter is own book.
I’d get Plastic Man a book, or a spot in a book.

I’d have had Avengers: Childrens Crusade play out just a little bit differently. Instead of just having everyone stand around the corpses of Cassie Lang and Kid Vision and shrugging their shoulders, I would have split the action into three parts.

Part one: Heroes trying to tech and magic to keep Cassie alive. It could still end with Cassie dying, but at least show the characters actully tried.

Part two: Iron Lad, not convinced the heroes have the capability to save Cassie, returns from the future with an army of Growing Men. Big fight in the hospital car park as most of the assembled heroes try to stop Iron Lad. Again, this could end with Kid Vision dying.

Part three: In a boardroom somewhere on the hospital grounds, Cap and Cyclops try to hash out an acceptable solution to the returned Scarlet Witch. Ends in a stalemate, with Scott threatening to kill Wanda the next time she puts a red shoe out of place.

I’d have them flesh out a bible for the individual books first before even thinking of doing a crossover.

Well, yeah, that’d be my hope. That if they did a crossover, they’d have to flesh a bible out.

@Acer – Regarding the Who’s Who/Handbook: It’s called “DC or Marvel Comics Database”. Let a fan whose passionate about a certain character write the bio and history.

I’d introduce Terry McGinnis into the DCnU. Not as Batman Beyond but maybe as a sidekick to Nightwing.

Similarly, in the near future I’d introduce Miles Morales into the regular Marvel Universe. I wouldn’t call him Spider-Boy (especially because it could be interpreted as racist) but I would bring him in as a teen sidekick for Spider-Man (Kid Spider?). Pete has a lot of Spider-ladies in his life but not very many Spider-dudes to hang out with or mentor.

I’d do more with Firestar. There’s a generation of people who think she’s a big time superhero because of Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends.

In the same vein, I’d figure out soemthing to do with Artemis Crock in the DCnU.

(Main theme – I’d do more with characters introduced in outside media and universes)

I’d make a rule that characters can only be on ONE Avengers team at a time. There’s 4 or 5 times and a whole universe of heroes, so Spider-man doesn’t need to be on two squads.

I’d make Songbird an Avenger. And I’d go back to her Bagley-er look, with the longer hair and more streamlined costume. Avengers Forever promised big things for Songbird and I’d like to see that promise fulfilled.

Agree 100% with Alex Hern, there needs to be more exploration of the fact that Ultimate Jessica Drew is really Peter Parker, and how the fact that Peter Parker is dead affects her. She’s him, only she’s not him, only he’s dead, so who is she?

I’d make the Shroud an Avenger

I’d remind writers that Grant Morrisson let Damien Wayne’s personality develop over the years and he shouldn’t always be written as the angry killer that his father doesn’t trust. He became more than that while he was Dick Grayson’s Robin.

I’d get Roger Langridge, Chris Samnee, Matt Wilson and Rus Wooton back together to continue (or at least properly finish) “Thor: The Mighty Avenger”.

I’d have Ed Brubaker wrap up his Captain America run. He could do a big finish and it’s time Captain America had a new flavor.

I’d have a Young Wonder Woman comic where the little princess gets into adventures.

I’d have a new Amethyst title.

I’d have IDW release “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures: The Forever War” and then follow it up with a continuation of the title with the old crew.

I’d get Patrick Gleason onto a title not written by Peter Tomasi. With his ability to capture character acting and creepy atmospheres I thought he would be great on a Batman title and he is, but I’d like to want to read words that aren’t Tomasi’s flat dialog. Gleason would be great on a Swamp Thing title as long as something was happening or perhaps a Marvel cosmic title (if Marvel were interested in those).

…And I’d support Drunken Fist’s idea of reprinting recent all ages comics in digest format at grocery stores.

…And I’d support Ryan Fisher to make Nightwing blue again. That’s his color. He doesn’t stand out among the Bat-Family now.

X-Men: Legacy is basically there to look at the rest of the faculty, but yeah I get what you mean.

I’d definitely not let our readers decide anything, apparently …I haven’t seen this many bad ideas since I was on okcupid.

@Joe Rice

That joke is bad enough to sound like something Shooter McGavin would say.

@Frank
I want DC and Marvel to be vigilant about characters, they should be accountable for keeping track of changes and share said changes with the public. A timeline, a “History of the ___ “, ANYTHING that documents changes over time for a fictional universe.

I’d have The Spectre appearing somewhere in the DC universe. It’s a shame that character is no where to be seen.

+ I’d shake things up for the Avengers family of books and have 4 ongoings: Avengers, Avengers West Coast, Avengers Academy, and an anthology book called “Avengers Assemble!” that would have various short stories featuring different characters from different eras and be a spotlight on new, upcoming talent or indie creators.

+ Likewise, I’d have a Spidey anthology book “Web of Spider-Man” and a Marvel villains anthology book “Masters of Evil” that would spotlight Spidey adventures and various baddie adventures, respectively.

+ I’d have Mary Jane Watson exit the Spider-Man books for a time and date a high-profile Marvel celeb, like Tony Stark or Hercules or something. MJ is a fun character and should be allowed to grow and move on!

+ I’d do a year-long story arc where Storm gets pregnant–a person whose emotions control the weather having pregnancy-related mood swings? Look out!

+ I’d start a “She-Hulk and The Lady Liberators” book–a fun, wacky title with a small cast and a few rotating members: She-Hulk, Monica Rambeau, Hellcat, and Firestar are the main group with 1 or 2 rotators and with Pepper Potts and Kate Kildare as supporting cast. C’mon, it’d be neat!

I’d re-kill Barry Allen and put Wally West back as The Flash.

I’d restore Peter and Mary Jane’s marriage.

I’d bring back Ultimate Peter Parker.

I’d let Roger Langrdge and Chris Samnee finish up Thor The Mighty Avenger

I’d put Kathryn Immomen and Sara Pitchelli back on Runaways. They’re 4 issues together looked very promising before being so abruptly cancelled.

I’d find some way for a publisher to pick up all those unfinished manga titles that TOKYOPOP dropped when they closed their doors.

I’d have taken my cues for the New 52 more from the various animated versions of the characters, such as Batman, Superman, Justice League Unlimited, etc. Doesn’t mean it has to be completely g-rated, but it would give newcomer fans at least a starting point with being able to recognize the characters.

I’d add Harley Quinn and Deadshot to the list of characters DC didn’t need to re-design, along with Amanda Waller and the Jim Lee-added seams to the JL outfits…

I’d demand more compressed storytelling.

I’d ratchet back Wolverine’s healing factor so injuries had some kind of an impact on him.

I’d have a Dr. Strange comic with lesser Marvel monster and magic characters in backup stories.

Forgot a few

I’d bring back the Hulk Family or whatever it was they called them. There should be lots of interesting stories to mine from shoving Bruce, Betty, Jen, Rick, Marlo, Lyra and Skaar in a minivan and driving them cross country. “Hard-Travellin’ Hulks.”

I’d bring back some of the Ultraverse characters:
I’d introduce Mantra as the mysterious new apprentice to Doctor Strange
I’d add Prime to the ranks of the Avengers, mostly so the big guns could watch over him since he’s way too powerful for Avenger’s Academy
I’d bring in Prototype as an associate or even rival of Tony Stark
I’d use Lord Pumpkin and Rune as recurring villains for Ghost Rider and Dr Strange.

I’d find someone to adapt the original Team 7 miniseries into a screenplay and make a movie out of it. Because it would be awesome.

I second Blue and Gold in JLI, and I’d put Kyle Rayner on JLA. I always liked him a lot better on the League, he seemed like the only character guys like Kelly and Morrison bothered to do characterization. And lets be honest, he isn’t be used much (1 book with six other Lanterns) and he isn’t be used that well.

I’d also have Marvel bring back Mar-Vell in a crossover that put the emphasis on Marvel Cosmic and maybe bring him back to fight Thanos (the one guy he SHOULD be coming back from the dead to fight) instead of just for a shock moment in AVX.

Finally, because of the X-treme X-Men news, I’d institute a rule at Marvel that if your book has X-Men in the titles, none of the featured characters are main characters in another book/ members of another X-Men team. When you have six 616 books called X-Men, there should be no overlap. Wolverine gets a pass though because A. he’s been really good in WatXM and Wolverine, B. he’s known for it and C. he makes too much money for Marvel and I’m trying to be realistic with my I’ds.

I’d fire Dan Didio and Joe Quesada and introduce 7-year term limits for whomever’s in charge of DC and Marvel.
I’d make comics less continuity-obsessed and less concerned about catering to fanboys in their 30s and 40s and make sure titles were genuinely accessible to ALL AGES.
I’d get comics out in more mainstream points of purchase, so that they can become impulse buys again.
And, as long as I’m excerising all this supreme power of mine, I’d give me and all the other Line It Is Drawn artists regular comic gigs. :)

@John Trumbull
I salute you.

Tom Fitzpatrick

March 17, 2012 at 7:30 am

I’d chain Grant Morrison and Richard Case to do a new series of DOOM PATROL.

I’d chain John Byrne to do IDW’s NEXT MEN permanently.

I’d chain Matt Wagner to do MAGE 3 until he’s good and done with it, and then do more GRENDEL.

I’d chain Warren Ellis to go back to his abandoned projects; FELL, newuniversal, DESOLATION JONES.

I’d chain Jim Starlin to finish his DREADSTAR & METAMORPHOSIS ODYSSEY series for once and all.

I’d chain myself to impossibilities and get universally lost to the joy and glee of Travis Pelkie! ;-)

You’ve totally got a dungeon in your basement, don’t you Tom?

I was flippin’ through the TV channels today, and came across a commercial for a show on a Disney channel called Lab Rats, and was wondering if that’s based on the John Byrne comic (since Tom brought up Byrne. C’mon, it totally makes sense!).

Tom Fitzpatrick

March 19, 2012 at 5:38 am

I’d wish, unfortunately I live in a apartment, so no dungeon torture for you, T.P.!

I’d bring back Ralph and Sue Dibney.

I’d bring back the New Gods, and get either Walt Simonson or Barry Windsor-Smith to write and draw it.

I’d forbid Kitty Pryde and Iceman from getting romantically involved. They didn’t work out in the Ultimate Universe, they didn’t work in the movies, they won’t work in 616.

I’d get Peter and MJ together. Anyone who thinks that Peter’s life would be easier if he hooked up with the love of his life has clearly never been in a relationship Ditto Clark and Lois.

I’d propose a new rule for both Marvel and DC: don’t kill off a prominent character in every company-wide crossover. Find different ways of maintaining suspense.

I’d separate Colossus from Juggernaut. Or at least give him a decent costume. His bald head is too small for his oversized musculature. When he’s not wearing the helmet, he looks like Zippy the Pinhead. When he does wear it, he looks like Colossus cosplaying as Juggernaut..

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