Ranting on DC’s New 52, plus what comics should be (for me)

I’d made a decision with DC’s New 52 to take advantage of thinking of it as a jumping off point. A perfect opportunity to start ordering less comics and focus my financial energies elsewhere.

This was not a boycott or a hatred of the re-launch. It seemed like a fine idea to me. Weird and strangely done, but I was ok with it. I was even feeling regretful when they announced books like ANIMAL MAN and the new Western title. Some of these books look great.

I really thought though that before the relaunches all the current books would have satisfying tie-ups where one could walk away from the book feeling like “It goes on, but this is a stop point.”. I expected no actual cliff-hangers.

Then I get Green Lantern #67, the conclusion to War of the Green Lanterns. Half the issue is a set up for Green Lantern #1. Maybe it’ll be tied up tightly in Aftermath of the War, but I betting that that book will instead be filler for the month Green Lantern isn’t published. This pisses me off.

I am just going to have to reconcile myself to not care.

I am slowly trying to drop some Marvel books as well.

Even if money was no object I’d be doing this. I need to taper off the books, as the stories are becoming to hit or miss.

I’d rather focus all my energies on more “independent books” that have been consistent or newer properties that have great creators behind them and not a lot of messy continuity.

Here are four books that fit that category now currently for me.

Sergio Aragonés’ Funnies: Published by BONGO as Sergio has been doing some great Simpson’s stuff for them, it is great to see Sergio let loose. He is a funny funny man and funnier than ever here.

Roger Landridge’s Snarked: Everything Landridge touches is gold, Fred the Clown, Thor, The Muppets and now he’s tackling Lewis Carroll. The #0 reprints Hunting of the Snark and Walrus and the Carpenter and I cannot wait to see how he expands the Wonderland Universe. I trust he will do even better than Tommy Kovak and Sonny Liew, even though that was an amazing book.

The Boys: Garth Ennis and Darrick Robertson continue to kick ass on this book. Russ Braun as the current artist as Darrick tackles Butcher’s origin is amazing and John McCrea has done some of the best work of his life here as well.

The Unwritten: While I’m not reading DC Comics anymore, I’ll be sticking with Vertigo. Scalped ends at issue #60… so that leaves me Unwritten by Mike Carey and Peter Gross. It’s truly one of the most compelling books I get monthly.

Armchair Comics Editing in 2011

In 2006, Dean Trippe did what all of us comic fans do occasionally, armchair editing. It’s much like armchair booking for wrestling. I had decided to really go the armchair route though. In armchair booking for wrestling you don’t just throw together matches, you tend to also come up with new angles and gimmicks as well. I decided what if I took that approach to armchair editing. I stuck to MARVEL and DC like Trippe did, but I’ created a whole new universe for both companies using their established characters.  The biggest thing to remember with Armchairing is that you can/try to ignore everything that is currently going on or is being set-up to go in a totally new and different direction that will still be possible and make sense to fans.

Now with DC about to do their own super reboot in September which almost resembles this entire idea and Marvel in kind of a strange state of existence with their titles, I’ve decided it’s time to try and do this again for shit & giggles.

My rules in 2006 were seven core titles for each company, but to be as progressive as possible.  I may be less progressive now with current interests, but I’ll keep the core 7, ignoring things such as MAX,, Ultimate Comics and such.   I’ve noticed that DC Comics is actually doing a super reboot as well, so my energies will be focused to just  MARVEL.  Still 50 titles is too many, 7 sounds just about right.  The 50 new DC titles do have some gems in the rough though. I hope you enjoy.

The Mighty Avengers by Roger Landrige and Chris Samnee.  The team that brought you The Mighty Thor bring it all back to the square one, but with a faster pace bringing in the full onslaught of all Avengers incarnations together for a book much like DC’s CURRENT version of JSA.

X-Men by Peter David and Clayton Henry.  Peter will bring his overarching, but brilliant pierced drama work of X-Factor to the more popular and well known mutants of film fame with one of the most under utilized artists in comics.

Spider-Man by Paul Tobin and Ronan Cliquet.  The writer of the Marvel Adventures version of Spidey understands the character and has created a version better than any.  While his current Matteo Lolli is fantastic, Cliquet has a dynamics needed for one of the premier titles of the universe.

Strange Tales by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and Kev Walker.  The entirety of Marvel’s supernatural forces get explored on a regular basis from the man that brought us a great miniseries about just this and the current artist of Thunderbolts.

Mysteries of the Future by Dan Slott and Paul Pelletier.  Years ago Dan Slott described to me a great Marvel future exploring paths set up in his Great Lakes Avengers books.  It’s time those ideas saw fruition and who better than an artist who can tackle humor, action and space with precision.

Cosmic by Keith Giffen, Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning and Marco Rudy.  The men who made Nova, Silver Surfer and more into the best things ever combine their writing efforts with another amazing, but underutilized current DC artist to bring the best the Beyond can bring.

Fantastic Family by Jonathan Hickman and Jimmy Cheung.  Hickman has proven himself with these characters and should be given the chance to reimagine them from scratch with an A-list artist who is also bar none one of the best in the biz and the World’s Greatest Comics Magazine deserves such.

To see my much more radical ideas from 2006, check out this link.