Marvel's Golden Age
Marvel seems to be dredging up a lot of their Golden Age material for their 70th Anniversary books and are even including some of their Golden Age characters and history in their in-continuity books. There's the upcoming Marvels Project, The Torch and even the recently finished Avengers/Invaders maxiseries. It seems odd for a company that generally ignores its past to a large degree in favour of telling 'new' stories to be bombarding us with so many Golden Age stories. I wonder how long it will be before we start hearing people complaining about Marvel's "Golden Age fetish", similar to how they always bring up DC's Silver Age fetish?
Maybe I'm Over Thinking This But...
Can Wolverine "regrow" his teeth if they get knocked out?
The Ultimate "Evil" - Bureaucrats!
It occurs to me that two of the biggest villains or, rather, antagonists in the Marvel Universe recently have basically been glorified bureaucrats - Tony Stark and Norman Osborn. I know that Osborn is actually a villain, but what really villainous stuff has he done of late? I don't think consolidating his power really counts as being truly evil. And Tony Stark was basically the bad guy because he decided to enforce the law. That's just so...boring. Where's the fun in that? Marvel's insistence that their shared universe has to closely mirror the real world is starting to lead toward some uninspired stories.
Speaking of The Superhuman Registration Act
Tony was right, Steve was wrong. End of story. There is no way to spin it so Steve is right in the end. Training and registering heroes is a good thing and the only problem with Tony's side is some of the stupid things they did that were unrelated to the actual SHRA.
You Know There Is Something Wrong When...
Spider-Man spends half of the first Brand New Day trade complaining about the benefits of registering under the SHRA.
You Never Really Have Haters Until You Write An Event
By haters, I mean the foaming at the mouth insane kind. The crazy kind for who, no matter what you do right, the slightest mess up is grounds for being immediately fired from Marvel or DC. It's going to be a sad day when there are Ed Brubaker or Dan Slott haters. A sad day indeed.
Miniseries vs. Ongoings
When Mark Millar's and Steve McNiven's Old Man Logan arc delays caused Marvel to release issue #73 of Wolverine before issue #72, people started wondering whether or not Old Man Logan should have been done as a miniseries instead of in Wolverine's ongoing series. The answer is no, it should not have been a miniseries.
The point of doing something like Old Man Logan is draw people to your ongoing series to possibly increase sales on the book afterward. Plus, there is the argument that a character's biggest stories should be in their ongoing titles, not a spin off miniseries. You could counter with the idea Old Man Logan isn't in continuity, so it shouldn't be in Wolverine's main title either, but it is in continuity and tangentially connects to Millar's Fantastic Four run.
The X-Men vs. DC
It occurs to me that if DC had tried to publish a book like X-Men: Legacy people would have been up in arms about stuff like "inaccessibility" and "continuity porn" yet, there was no such outrage about X-Men: Legacy. If you actually stop and think about it, the X-Men alone are a continuity nightmare, more so than the entirety of DC, yet it receives nowhere near the amount of complaining that is leveled at DC. I wonder why?
My Review of The Incredible Hercules: Love and War
Why is it that publishers are so eager to set up shared universes? I read on Wikipedia that CrossGen had one even though their books didn't really have that much in common and Dynamite is now looking to start one with their Project Superpowers stuff. What's the point? Most of these fail to catch on and there's no real benefit to a shared universe other than limiting stories being told, so I'm always confused when a publisher attempts to build up a new shared universe.
A lot of people in the comics industry, both insiders and fans, dogmatically cling to the 32 page floppy/pamphlet/single issue as the primary, or only, form comics should take. I have nothing against people who enjoy single issues, but I find this attitude incredibly misguided. 1) It takes away options from the consumer, always a bad thing, and 2) there is plenty of proof that comics that fail as single issues can survive in other formats.
Over at Marvel, both Spider-Girl and Runaways sold well enough in digest form for the single issues to stick around. At Vertigo many of the series survive on the strength of their trade sales alone while Avatar is serializing Warren Ellis's FreakAngels as a webcomic and then releasing the material in collections.
These are just a few examples of comic books that find success outside of the traditional single issue format, yet comic publishers continue to treat it as the only way to release comics while the industry continues to decline. Maybe, instead of trying to force to customers to buy a specific format, they should start offering more options to attract a greater number of consumers.
Cup O' Joe Redux
I've read a couple more of Joe Quesada's new columns at CBR, but, as before, the art is the only thing of value to be found. It is still filled to the brim with corporate double speak and non-answers. There is also is this gem of an answer that illustrates my point...
Kiel Phegley: Personamanx also asked, "Joe, are there any plans on releasing The 'What if the Runaways became the Young Avengers?' as a one-shot? Because I had virtually zero interest in all of the main stories in those 'What Ifs,' and I think that I’m not the only one.
Joe Quesada: While there are no plans for releasing it as a one-shot at the moment, the story has been compiled and can be found in the “What If?: Secret Wars” TPB. Pick up a copy and C.B. Cebulski will personally send you an email of thanks.
Best. Red Lantern. Ever.
Reader Challenge - Try Something New
Variety is the spice of life, or so the saying goes. So, if you only read Marvel, try some DC books and visa-versa. If you read only Marvel and DC, try some Dark Horse and Image. If you only read American comics, try some manga or European comics. Just try something new, you may find something you really enjoy.