Sunday, July 12, 2009

Bought/Thought - Wednesday Comics #1

Bought/Thought is a relatively new feature here at the Weekly Crisis. It basically amounts to me gathering links to various reviews of noteworthy comics, Wednesday Comics #1 in this case, picking some quotes from the reviews and presenting them to you here for a macro view of the book and how people viewed it. As an added bonus, I've been asking people following me on Twitter to send me replies and let me know what they thought of the book. I then spotlight as many of those replies as well, giving a short, "real world" answer from readers just like yourself. Hit the jump to see what other reviewers and your fellow readers thought of DC's newest and most ambitious project.

Robot 6

CBR's Robot 6 took a rare crack at reviewing and Chris Mautner's enthusiasm and passion while describing Wednesday Comics was nearly enough to change my own mind on the book:
"This is a book designed expressly to revel in the joys of serial reading, and the pleasures it offers are simple but vast. There are some missteps (the coloring job on the Titans page seems muddy and gray), but overall it’s hard to to see the debut issue as anything but a success. I can’t even begin to guess if regular DC readers will latch on to a book of this nature — the superhero audience is much too fickle for me to gauge — but if they value artistry, originality and good design, they’ll pick it up in a heartbeat." - Chris Mautner

Best Shots Extra

While a tad hyperbolic, Newsarama's Best Shots Extra reviewer, David Peposeo, sung praises of how great the newspaper/comic came out and heralds it as a groundbreaking series that will do great things for the industry as a whole:
"With some breathtaking art and with some other stories -- such as Kyle Baker's cinematic Hawkman and Dave Gibbons and Ryan Sook's epic Kamandi -- looking like they will soon explode off the page in the coming weeks, DC and Mark Chiarello have really done a great thing for this industry. While it remains to be seen if the series will continue to improve or struggle under the weight of its own ambitions, based on the first issue of this groundbreaking series, I only wish that every day could be like Wednesday." - David Peposeo


SpeedForce.Org's Kelson Vibber was surprised at the retro feel each of the stories gave off, but seemed to be happy with the final product.
"I wasn’t expecting so many of the strips to have such a retro feel. Green Lantern was outright set in the early 1960s, Metal Men was clearly the 1970s, Metamorpho and Flash had the feel of the early Silver Age. (Flash even brought back the logo from the 1940s. And the one from the 2000s. Using both next to each other looks a little awkward.) And everyone seems to be comparing Kamandi to Prince Valiant. I guess it makes sense, given that nostalgia is one of the driving principles behind the series. (That and DC’s quest to keep people coming into the comic shop every week.)" - Kelson Vibber

mike sterling's progressive ruin

Longtime comic shop owner, Mike Sterling, of the self-titled mike sterling's progressive ruin, had a lot to say about the book from a comic shop owner's perspective, mentioning how the book brought in new faces, people were buying multiple copies to give away and so on, but also had some kind words of his own to say, such as:
"It's beautifully done, with a variety of styles showcasing a good sampling of DC's adventure/super hero characters. I was going to note a couple of favorites, but I can't really narrow it down. All the entries grabbed my interest, and I certainly look forward to future installments. (But I have to note that Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez's Metal Men looks just as fantastic as I was hoping, even with the characters appearing (with one exception) in their human costumes. So, so good.)" - Mike Sterling

Broken Frontier

Lee Newman, of Broken Frontier, couldn't stop singing praises about Wednesday Comics, from the quality of the product to DC's marketing, it all worked for him:
"This is an anthology done to perfection. It is also an ingenious package calling yesteryear to memory but clearly standing out as bold in today’s market. Not only that, DC has put its best foot forward in marketing this one. USA Today is reprinting the Superman tales in its Wednesday editions. Pages have been uploaded on DC’s website. Shops were sent a full size version of the Batman page from this issue. The convention panels have been abuzz with the format and the talent.

Wednesday Comics is hype done right and most importantly backed up not only in the comic community but to the wider public as well. Now it remains to be seen if the consumer noticed. This reader thinks that anyone who misses out is just plum crazy." - Lee Newman

In 140 Characters or Less

And, finally, here's what everyone was saying about the book on Twitter:
"My son after reading "Wednesday Comics": I wish it was just normal comic book size." - Tim Callahan

"I keep trying to come up with an opinion about Wednesday Comics, but all I can think of is how beautiful the whole thing is." - Erin Kelly

"I enjoyed Wednesday Comics for the most part, I bought a copy for my father as well. Flash was the best and WW was the worst." - Rawnzilla

"I thought it looked interesting but because of how the stories are split up I'm going to wait for the trade to read it." - ComicBookLegacy

"Wednesday Comics is a gorgeous design object... but in terms of actual story content, it's anorexically thin." - Andy Diggle


While there were a few dissenters, myself included (mine was more to do with the format than actual content), the reaction to Wednesday Comics was overwhelmingly positive. As far as content, many pointed out the Silver Age tone to the stories, as well as the similarities in each of the stories' first outings, which all amounted to basically an intro to the hero and setup of the plot before a cliffhanger ending. Most agreed this was a minor complaint and hardly worth mentioning, though.

Also, there wasn't a single reviewer that was not wowed by the artwork on display, with many pointing to Kyle Baker's Hawkman, Paul Pope's Adam Strange and Karl Kerschl's Flash as stand out stories. That's not to say the others were bad, as everyone seemed to have a favourite of their own, but those names kept cropping up in almost every review.

All in all, few comics seemed to garner as much critical acclaim, especially the nostolgic, hushed reverence, that this project seemed to elicit in most people I've spoken to or read reviews of. I know many have commented on our reviews already, but feel free to discuss Wednesday Comics again, other reviewer's reviews or even those comments from your fellow readers on Twitter.

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Matthew Hex said...

It was very well put together and so nice to look at. After the first couple of stories i was a bit dissapointed with how short the stories read but then there were lots more to read and by the end I was satisfied.

Andrenn said...

After hearing the good and the bad, I'm still excited to pick up the collection of this.

Kevin Melrose said...

"CBR's Robot 6 took a rare crack at reviewing ..."

We typically run reviews two to three times a week.

ShadowWing Tronix said...

I didn't pick it up because only a few stories interested me. (Sadly, Flash wasn't among them. Only Superman, Supergirl, Batman, and Green Lantern were.) I'd pick those up in individual collections, but it wasn't worth the $3.99, and I've had trouble keeping up with my usual hauls as it is.

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