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The 2016 I’ds of March!

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” or “You know that cool character? I wouldn’t have killed him/her.”

No, I mean more like tweaks and nudges, stuff like that. Not major changes.

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

I’d give Jessica Jones an ongoing series again

jessic-jones1

My wife actually suggested this one, but I agree. It seems kind of weird that Jessica Jones’ TV show was such a hit and yet Marvel doesn’t have a comic book out there with the character. I mean, I know DC also didn’t have a Supergirl comic book out there when the Supergirl TV show debuted, either, but DC at least addressed the issue.

I’d give Alfred Pennyworth a new hand

I was watching Agents of SHIELD the other day and they also came to the same basic conclusion when it came to Agent Coulson’s fake hand. It’s just easier to give him a “super advanced robotic hand” that looks like a real hand and be done with it. Having hands chopped off makes for a cool moment, but if you’re keeping the character around long term, it’s usually better to just give them the hand back somehow. Even Robert Kirkman admitted that, yeah, he didn’t think the whole “cutting Rick’s hand off” would have as much of an impact on his future stories as it did, so he probably wouldn’t have done it if he had the chance again.

I’d add Tara to the Walking Dead comic book

Tara

I think Tara is interesting and the comic book could do a little bit more with her than the show. As for the benefits of adding her, A. the readers would be already invested in her as soon as they met her, which is nice to do with a new character and B. it would make readers even more antsy about whether Daryl will ever show up. So it’s a win-win!

I’d do a Star Wars/Marvel Comics Crossover

line1-17-4

We’ve done this as a Line it is Drawn theme before (Marco D’Alfonso did the drawing above of Deadpool and Boba Fett), but can you imagine the reaction if Marvel, who is killing it with their Star Wars line of comics, did a six-issue Star Wars/Marvel crossover? Out of continuity, of course, but still – Jason Aaron writing it, John Cassaday drawing it – holy crap, that would be amazing.

I’d ease up a little bit on the bleakness in Outcast

Robert Kirkman and Paul Azaceta’ Outcast series has been strong so far, but I think that the book has, at times, gotten a bit TOO bleak. Recently, it seems like Kirkman is trying to address this concern by having more people involved actually believe Kyle Barnes, who has a connection to demonic possessions, but the reasons they believe are because terrible things happened to them. I know that the book is dark and that’s intentional and I’m totally cool with that, but a lot of times the darkness works best when contrasted a little bit with light, so the dark is perhaps even MORE devastating. Having Kyle and his Reverand friend just have miserable thing after miserable thing after miserable thing after miserable thing after miserable thing after miserable thing happen to them gets to be a bit much.

I’d add Moon Girl to the supporting cast of The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl

Moon_Girl_feat

Moon Girl from Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur has been a blast, but it seems like that series is not long for the world, so I’d love to see her continue as a supporting cast member in The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl. Moon Girl lives in New York City, so it wouldn’t be too hard to work out a sort of Big Sister/Little Sister thing with her and Squirrel Girl.

Story continues below

I’d add Harrison Wells to the DC Universe

the-flash-season-2-did-harrison-wells-accidentally-reveal-zoom-s-identity-706041

Harrison Wells has proved to be a pretty darn interesting character, and I think he’d be a fine addition to the cast of the upcoming Flash series as a scientific adviser to Barry Allen. Lord knows all superheroes could really use a good scientific adviser. It could also get us a brand-new Jesse Quick, if you bring his daughter with him!

I’d give another writer a shot at following Tom King on The Vision

vision

The Vision has been excellent under the guide of writer Tom King. There is a very good chance that no one could match his (pardon the pun) singular vision, but it’s such a fascinating book that I think I’d like to see another writer at least be given a chance at continuing the book past King’s departure at #12. I know the most likely scenario is that the book ends at #12. And that might even be the right decision, but as we’ve seen with some other books that kept going after classic runs, it’s not like the new stuff “hurt” the old stuff, ya know? And sometimes the new stuff is good on its own. Tom Veitch’s Animal Man was a good comic book. Nowadays, there’s no way that book continues post-Grant Morrison. And I think that would have lost us some good comic books. So yes, King’s Vision is awesome – a later writer probably won’t be as good as him, but why not give it a try?

I’d add Martian Manhunter to the main Justice League

Martian-Manhunter-JLA-1

I don’t need him to be an original member or whatever, but I’d like to see J’onn at least return to his spot on the main team. Supergirl has done a nice job of showing how awesome J’onn is, and he “deserves” to be on the main Justice League team. No one has to be kicked off. There’s room for everyone.

I’d give Steve Rogers the original costume back

Captain_America_Sam_Wilson_7_Cassaday_Variant

I know, I know, I’ve done this one before, but since he’s returning as Captain America with ANOTHER brand new costume, I figured now would be as good of a time to reiterate how much I love that original Captain America costume. The thing was unchanged for over sixty years! Why people think that they need to “improve” on it now is beyond me.

Okay, those are my I’ds for 2016! Now YOU folks send in your suggestions for what you would do! Remember, it has to be tweaks and minor changes!

37 Comments

I’d definitely give Jess her own comic, I’d also do a Supergirl one like her show. I’d get that Death’s Head comic Marvel teased published and I’d do a new Captain Britain series.

Superconnectivity

March 15, 2016 at 12:14 pm

I’d bring Gus Gorman into the DC comic book universe as a new information technology based super-villain. If you need a new big bad for a cross over no one would suspect, you can’t do better than the modern fear of magical all knowing computers (all your secrets belong to us Mr. Luthor and Mr. Wayne) and for people you would never suspect, quiet old Gus Gorman on the fourth floor is hardly the guy you’d imagine as the mastermind.

I’d also put The Infatiguable Boulder (Emery Shuab) into the Agents of SHIELD book. A kid as obsessed with superheroes as Coulson but who never needs to sleep and has access to all the Avengers Databases, also he cannot be harmed, and just really wants to be a superhero (even if he is not a physically strong as most human level heroes). You can see how the stories just write themselves.

The Jessica Jones thing is so obvious, I’m amazed I never noticed it wasn’t around. And the 8 million new titles Marvel has kicked off in the last year, and never one for her. (Has there ever even been a comic titled “Jessica Jones”) Sometimes they really miss the forest for the trees.

Wait, Alfred’s hand is cut off…? (Forget it, I don’t want to know).

I’m not sure Tara, Darrell, or anyone crosses over and comes off as anything more than fan service. If anything Kirkman’s world needs to explain how there are more gay people than Asian people in his world.

Eh, have any of these cross concept crossovers worked really well? Anyone loving that Star Trek Green Lantern one? Unless they do Patton Oswalt’s idea. THAT I’d buy.

Is anything Kirkman does NOT bleak?

Has there been any live action additions to the comics that have been really great? Guys like Coulson don’t seem to ever translate that great to the books. I think the high points are the animated ones. Harley, Firestar, etc.

You’re right, no one thought to cancel something that was good just because the writer was leaving. If it’s a self-contained, Elseworlds kind of story, sure, maybe. But more and more I think they’re missing out on what makes comics unique and great, and that’s one creator building on the other. They can’t do finite stories better than books or movies or even TV. But they can do continuous ones better. As great as a lot of these characters are, Superman is what he is today as much because of all the guys who took their turn after the original creators as those guys themselves.

Sigh….why do we have to live in a world where the Martian Manhunter isn’t an original Justice Leaguer? Or for that matter, where a costume that is regularly ridiculed for being a blue egghead is thought to be superior than a costume that has basically gone unchanged for 60+ years? Come up with great new stories, not new costumes.

on the marvel side i would not only give jessica her own comic again but also resurect the original defenders with bruce back as the hulk. plus another doctor strange comic what with the movie coming. along with another attempt at giving cloak and dagger some over due loving in their own book not just as spider man co stars. dc would resurect ragman . and also resurect the long gone bat baddies block buster and the outsider again and make them stick around long term .

All good calls! I’d especially be down for classic Cap sooner than later and Martian Manhunter on the JLA. New Jessica Jones seems like a total no-brainer.

The Jessica Jones thing is so obvious, I’m amazed I never noticed it wasn’t around. And the 8 million new titles Marvel has kicked off in the last year, and never one for her. (Has there ever even been a comic titled “Jessica Jones”) Sometimes they really miss the forest for the trees.

I suspect it is a Bendis thing. They’re not going to do one without him writing it and he doesn’t want to do one right now, as he’s writing two Iron Man comics and Miles Morales Spider-Man plus Powers and the upcoming Civil War II.

I’d do just one simple thing–drop the sliding timeline and just let characters grow. Let each generation of readers have their own person under the cowl or wearing the cape.

I’d let Captain America fight Judge Dredd. Like Judgement in Gotham, only good. And I’d let Cam Kennedy draw it because he did Rogue Trooper and I’d love to see his Captain America.

I’d return Starfire back to her hardcore warrior status, who just HAPPENS to be an amazing beauty… instead of the bubble-headed twit they have turned her into.
I’d also give Raven back her original, BETTER, costume and ditch the silly feather bullshit she has, now.

I really love the Alias comic book and the Jessica Jones TV show, but I also really hate everything Bendis wrote since Avengers Disassembled. So, if no one but him can touch Jessica Jones, I’d rather she remained without a comic book of her own.

I agree with M-Wolverine about the bleakness in all Robert Kirkman’s work. He is one of those post-2001 guys that seem to have a very nihilistic view of life, at least as reflected in his writing. I like him, but I have to take him in small doses.

As for the ration of gay x Asian people in his work… On one hand, Asians and Latinos are the most under-represented people ever in fiction (latinos are the champions, though, considering their percentage in the American population and the number of fictional characters), but gays have the different problem of under-reporting. I suspect the actual number of GLBT people to be 3 to 5 times the number of people who openly admit to be GLBT (particularly bisexuals). So introducing a lot of them in fiction seems realistic to me.

I’d like to have Marvel end the every year Big Event storylines. Too many new and potentially interesting books arrive, only to have to tie into “Original, Secret, Axis Sin, Wars,” and therefore not be allowed to build their own story.

Not everything Kirkman did was bleak. Irredeemable Ant-Man was often hilarious.

I’d end M-Pox and have both Inhumans and Mutants as growing populations again. I prefer the X-Men when they are growing.

I’d start a new Fantastic Four series where Reed and Sue run into trouble in the Multiverse, and have to be saved by a team of Doctor Doom (repaying Reed for his new face), Johnny, Ben, and Medusa.

I would love to see Captain America return to his original costume.

I would also like a return of Spider-Man’s black costume (the cloth version patterned off of the symbiote). Not as a ‘he only wears this now,’ just as a costume he sometimes wears, like it was in the mid-80s.

Staying with Spider-Man, Peter Parker should remain a scientist. No more Peter being underemployed and struggling to make ends meet, please.

Harrison Wells has proved to be a pretty darn interesting character, and I think he’d be a fine addition to the cast of the upcoming Flash series as a scientific adviser to Barry Allen. Lord knows all superheroes could really use a good scientific adviser. It could also get us a brand-new Jesse Quick, if you bring his daughter with him!

The problem is with the quality of the editing and writing at the current DC universe. They would just botch Harrison Wells. Look at that the Didio/Harras/Johns/Lee brain trust has done with no-brainer characters like Batman Beyond and Harley Quinn. They took Batman Beyond, did a decent job with him when in the digital-only comics, which Didio and company have nothing to do with, then he joined the mainstream DC comic continuity and was immediately ruined. Harley Quinn was turned into a permawhite murderous sexpot who was doused in same chemicals as the Joker. No matter how great a character is, it will turn terrible 9 times out of 10 if used in modern DC. No way could a comic book Harrison Wells be remotely as good as the TV one right now.

I know, I know, I’ve done this one before, but since he’s returning as Captain America with ANOTHER brand new costume, I figured now would be as good of a time to reiterate how much I love that original Captain America costume. The thing was unchanged for over sixty years! Why people think that they need to “improve” on it now is beyond me.

In addition to bringing back his old costume, I’d also bring it ALL the way back, meaning to remove those awful Big Bird feathers Cassaday added to the costume. Expanding the chain mail armor links to the point where they looked like giant feathers was bad enough, but later people just kept expanding them and it started looking really bad.

Regarding Martian Manhunter, I think part of his problem is when he went from not only being a type of imaginary minority but also becoming unofficially black. I’m not sure exactly when the association of Martian Manhunter with a black man started, but it’s become cemented in recent decades. David Harewood is now the SIXTH Black Actor to play J’onn Jonnz in animated and live action adaptations. Now that he’s unofficially black, maybe he’s now treated with the same rules that usually rule black actors and characters: the “there can only be one” tokenism rule. Maybe on some unconscious level the creators feel like Martian Manhunter and Cyborg on the same team will feel too much like two black male characters, which is often a no-no.

Really, I’m just sad that Alias concluded in the first place. It ended at a decent place, but they immediately plopped Jessica over onto … uh, I think it was The Pulse (is that right?) and that was basically just a dead series with a neutered Jessica.

If I were running things at DC:
– I’d put Martian Manhunter back in the JL and also make sure that his excellent solo series is revived after “Rebirth”
– I’d give Wonder Woman a second monthly. Then one title could have a more mythological bent and the other one could be more about the super-heroey stuff, sort of like “Detective” and “Batman” used to have vague focuses on crime and super-heroism respectively.
– I’d make a couple of overtures toward Jonathan Hickman.
– I’d republish those Jack Kirby’s 4th World omnibuses in glorious matte paper before we start to see parademons in Batman v. Superman (c’mon, my wallet and my bookshelf are begging you, DC).

If I were running things at Marvel:
– I’d give Dean Haspiel whatever he wanted to write and draw a Fantastic Four series.
– I’d either reduce cover prices to $2.99 or print covers at least on something thicker than Kleenex.
– I’d bring back “Strange Tales” as a split book and try to get 10 pages a month per feature from artists who are a little too slow for regular monthlies – but this way, art consistency could be maintained and we could move away from decompression a little. Dream teams: Grant Morrison (somehow doing monthlies, and Marvel, too!) and J.H. Williams III (somehow interested in work-for-hire again!) on Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD and Milligan and McCarthy (somehow back together again!) on Dr. Strange.

If I were Matt Fraction:
– I’d take a year off to just write Casanova (and also, I’d get Image to publish the most recent arcs in monochromatic trades)

If I were Matt Kindt:
– I’d keep doing what I’m doing.

Oh, I also agree that the Vision should continue. If Moon Knight can go on after Ellis and Hawkeye can go on after Fraction, maybe someone else can pick up the reins from King?

– I’d relaunch The Brave and the Bold as a monthly Flash/Green Arrow team-up title to capitalize on the CW shows

— I’d reach out to Bob Layton to do some work in his own corner of the relaunched Valiant characters, outside Shooter’s purview if need be

— I’d give Bruce Timm his own DCAU-continuity book with his choice of co-writers and co-artists

— I’d give Peter David a Quicksilver solo book, or at least a 12-issue limited series

— I’d get Becky Cloonan to relaunch Amethyst or Jennifer Kale as a contemporary YA comic

— I’d take advantage of digital platforms to republish Golden Age comics from microfilm or whatnot and sell them at somewhat higher prices than regular digital comics to offset part of the expense

— I’d give Peggy Carter an ongoing, or at least a comic set int he TV show’s universe

— If I weren’t at Marvel, I’d look into reviving Modesty Blaise with a Carter-esque tone

— I’d do oversized collections of Mike Allred’s work

— I’d go ahead and commission Francisco Francavilla’s “Batman 1972″ proposal from some years ago

— I’d find something, anything, for J.H. Williams to do, even if it’s just covers or a single graphic album a year

I have lots of ideas, but the only one that’s coming up is this . . .

I’D GIVE KYLE RAYNER AND SIMON BAZ THEIR OWN GREEN LANTERN BOOK. Think of it as Training Day, with laughs and minus drugs. The self-made GL takes the upstart rookie under his wing on Earth, because stories with universal scope can be tiresome.

I’d read my comics faster than I do.

Oh, wait, that’s not the point of this….

Too damn many good comics all around to keep track of!

I’d commit to one full year of no ‘line-wide’ events. Put great creators in charge of great characters for 12 (or, if you want to accelerate it for some books like ‘Avengers’ or ‘Justice League, 18) issues and just let it ride. Only allow the traditional ‘guest spot’ when it truly feels like it will feel both warranted and special. A small step for great storytelling.

Thinking about it . . . would it be too much to bring back Chloe Sullivan, even though she didn’t appear outside of the Jimmy Olsen backups? Or does the DCU have a one “blonde brainiac” rule with Felicity Smoak?

I’d have the comics community stop being so focused on and obsessed with what Marvel and DC are doing.

> it’s not like the new stuff “hurt” the old stuff, ya know?

Once, I felt like trying that famous thang, but…

AHAB: SEASON ONE
AHAB: THE HUNT
AHAB: THE FALL
ISHMAEL: YEAR ONE
ISHMAEL: THE LOST YEARS
PEQUOD: HUNT FOR RED MOBY
BEFORE MOBY-DICK
MOBY-DICK: OVERTURE
MOBY-DICK: THE MISSION
LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF AHAB
BRIDES OF MOBY
SON OF MOBY
THEY SAVED MOBY’S BRAIN

Disney-Warner’s stuff ain’t for me, ya know? I’d rather read a book.

Moby Dick Does Dallas

Deep Moby Dick

Men Call Him: Ishmael!

I think the no giant events for a year would be great creatively except those books and their tie-ins continue to sell extremely well, so it’s hard for a company to leave that money on the table. Until fans stop buying them they’ll keep doing them (I adored Secret Wars, but most have not been close to that quality.) I of course would hope they could keep them out of recently launched books but it probably helps get new readers to those titles, so not sure they’d do that either. Unless their is a way to make up the revenue lost, I don’t see it happening unfortunately.

But yes, hopefully Bendis can do a Jessica Jones book when he’s done with Civil War 2.

And not mentioned yet, but I’d love a new Legion series. Written by Tom King or (less likely) Hickman.

I’d live a new Alias comic, so long as they don’t insist on ruining her family life. Unfortunately, with ongoing serials, it inevitably comes to the day when some writer, seeking cheap drama, decides there has to be marital strife or some such. Jess can be a great character, with plenty of interesting and exciting adventures, while maintaining a working mom’s life.

I’d return Spider-Man 2099 to 2099 and give him something that looks more like his original suit. Let him keep the tech upgrades or whatever, but the old suit looked much better.

I’ll also second (third, fourth, whatever) the idea of skipping the annual line-wide crossovers for a while. It’s especially ridiculous at Marvel where they have at least three big crossovers this year: Civil War 2, that Pleasantville thing, and the Apocalypse tie-in. I’m skipping everything from those stories that don’t appear in books I already read.

Since DC seems to be open to alternate Earths again, I’d have one where Barry is still dead, Hal is still the Specter, and any crossover from Identity Crisis forward never happened. I liked the lighter heroes-can-be-heroes thing DC had going on prior to IC.

I’d focus on things other than superheroes. I love the genre; but, more often than not, the interesting stuff in comics has been at the fringes. Building a solid mix of other genres and superheroes is probably a better path for DC and Marvel. Given that their continued existence is pretty much to maintain trademarks and provide content for other media platforms, exploring other cinematic genres and storytelling can’t hurt.

@Omar Karindu
Marvel is the last company I would want to touch Modesty Blaise. DC did a decent job on that one shot, with Dick Giordano (who was perfect, based on his work on the Human Target and Batman) and peter O’Donnel, based on his first Modesty novel. Really, though, Velvet is close enough for me. I wouldn’t mind seeing Mike Barr take a stab at it, based on his work on Maze Agency. I think he would capture the Modesty/Willie Garvin dynamic well.

If we can’t do away with the annual events, turn them back into the Annual Events. Run a mini-series solo, or the Alpha and Omega specials like back when and put the crossover stories in the over-sized Annuals. Less room for decompression, enough room for consequences to be examined, and as part of a traditional series run it still brings in revenue and new eyes to the ongoings without sacrificing the narrative flow of the title’s issue to issue continuity.

Actually, here’s something I thought about:

I’d stop having just one continuity for the big 2. Each universe, give different creative teams a shot at whatever types of stories they want to tell.

Grant Morrison want to do a run of stories around the Marvel Kirby characters, say? Let him have a few books to tell whatever tale he wants without it affecting anything else. It’d be on one of the Earths that Reed and the gang is creating out in space or whatever.

Same thing at DC, give a creator or group of creators carte blanche to tell whatever kinds of stories they want to tell, using whatever characters from the company they want, and continuity be damned!

@M-Wolverine:

Interesting bit of trivia: most recent stats show that Atlanta’s population is about 5% Asian, while they actually have one of the largest gay populations in the country, with the best studies indicating that 12.8% identify as LGBT. Since that’s the city where things start, at least it’s kind of feasible…although that would also mean there should be like 5 times as many black and Hispanic characters, so realism doesn’t entirely hold up there.

If I worked at one of the Big Two, I’d run monthly polls for readers to vote for either a) stories that haven’t been collected that should be or b) trades that are out of print to be reprinted. Whichever wins for the month gets put out to press, yes.

I’d offer Alison Bechdel however much money she wants to script a new Batwoman series.

Yay for Tom Veitch but poor, overlooked Peter Milligan! #animalman

Travis: Great idea that big 2 would obv never support. MAYBE the way to make the pill chewable is to announce these off-/separate-continuity books as maxiseries that extend more than one year. Like, 3yrs or 5yrs. Lotta good, encapsulated storytelling can come out of that. And without the shackles of continuity, big chance to do things that are daring.

I was obviously painting a broad brush on Kirkman’s work. Rene and Jeff makes good points. Id say it could be seen as an accurate representation of the South, but I don’t really think he’s ever gone for that. Or 90% of his leads wouldn’t be white. And I shouldn’t paint all his work. I’m just salty that his one Asian character died over 50 issues ago, and he’s only added one tertiary at best character. But I wouldn’t classify Ant-Man as particularly uplifting. The guy is bad and a perv and makes “the straights” seem like rubes. So that is pretty cynical too, if funny. I read a lot of his stuff; I just probably don’t want him writing the next Superman movie I guess.

Or Cap. Who has gotten too “feathered,” but it is scale mail, even if they always call it chain erroneously.

And I’ll second the rerun to black for Spider-Man. I thought it was best when he wore both. One for day and one for night, or just whatever is clean. Since they’re not even using Venom as a bad guy anymore, why not?

I’d make Hedy Wolfe into a sometimes-partner/sometimes-villain named Hellhound.

I’m hoping that Moon Girl/Devil Dinosaur get’s a reprieve. Moon Girl meeting Squirrel Girl would have the problem of Squirrel girl wanting to constantly fight Devil Dinosaur (Squirrel Girl loves fighting DInosaurs, she wants to fight dinosaurs all day)

I hope Vision is continued or relaunched after the end of Tom King’s run but going for a different direction than Tom King’s run – I love what he’s doing, but don’t want it followed by a poor imitation. The Vision is a wonderful character open to a wide range of stories.

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