Thursday, June 9, 2011


Yeah, guess I really should be parsing Catullus or tracing the development of bridge imagery in the High Modernists but it's DC's reboot/relaunch/revamp that's been most interesting lately. In case you don't know in September DC is releasing 52 new series all at #1 and apparently with revised or simplified continuity. It's a big move and naturally generated a lot of discussion which after all is much of the point. I don't have anything particularly interesting to say but:

* 52 new series but I'm betting at least half will be gone in a year.

* Looking at an almost-compete list there are maybe a dozen I'll actually buy - the four Batman titles, Batwoman, DC Universe Presents (at least the Deadman story), Justice League, Justice League Dark, Demon Knights, Swamp Thing, Sgt Rock and All-Star Western. But it's hard to tell. Sgt Rock could be really dumb and that first issue more than enough.

* Others look interesting such as Azzarello on Wonder Woman but even Brubaker couldn't do much with that character. Frankenstein, I Vampire, Resurrection Man, Hawk & Dove, Legion Lost, Suicide Squad and some of these other second-tier titles have the potential to be really strong just because there's so much possibility but more likely they'll just fade into wandering stories with unfocused characters. Normally I'd love the idea of a Blackhawk series but this modernized version sounds like they're copying GI Joe. The rest will just have to wait. Did we really need an Aquaman book? Red Lanterns? Firestorm? I stopped reading Titans years ago but the cover of the new issue looks absolutely horrible. And don't all those Justice League variations sound like DC is trying to copy Marvel's Avengers strategy?

* It's nice to see Azzarello, Lemire and Milligan here but DC really missed a chance to bring in fresher or indie creators. Why not make Bizarro an ongoing? Or another Wednesday Comics? But really it looks like DC is trying to make it seem new while following the old approaches, nothing too strange thank you very much.

* Several people have commented on how this was a chance for DC to bring the Wildstorm characters into the DCU but I'm not sure why they would bother. (And notice there's no Authority.) Perhaps more to the point is the rumors we've been hearing for a couple of years about DC exploring the possibility of its own Ultimate line apparently were true - it's just that they did this with all their books (excepting Vertigo of course but now some of that's being pulled into DCnU as well).

* I was disappointed to hear Barbara Gordon would become Batgirl, apparently being either healed or reverted to a pre-shooting status. (Maybe they're just going to retcon away all Alan Moore stories - bye bye Mogo.) There are already two more-than-servicable Batgirl possibilities and as Oracle Gordon has consistently been one of the most fully realized characters in mainstream comics. But Jill Pantozzi at Newsarama makes an even stronger case that DC is really not living up to its claims of diversity.

* Guess if you're going to do it then go all the way but it's sad to hear Detective and probably Action will lose their original numbering. Still that too may be back in a year. At least DC isn't as bad about this as Marvel who at times might as well just number every issue of every series #1.

* And the announcement that Ambush Bug won't be involved in any of this means I may just skip the whole thing. Hey as long as that overpriced Sugar & Spike archive isn't delayed....