Saturday, January 14, 2012

The New New 52

By now you've all heard that six DC titles are getting cancelled, and six new ones are starting. I'd like to say that this will result in me buying fewer titles, but it really doesn't look like that's the case. Some thoughts, first on the outgoing books:
  • O.M.A.C.: The only book on the list that I'm actually sorry to see go. I kind of wonder how this title would have done if Dan Didio's name weren't attached. It's a shame, but I think the low expectations that set at the start helped keep the book from ever finding a footing, despite widespread acclaim from the Kirbyphiles of the Internets. It was crazy fun, and I'm sad to see it go. Hopefully, though, we'll see Cadmus and Co. popping up in Giffen's run on Superman--because honestly, Cadmus ought to be closer to Jimmy Olsen anyway.
  • Men of War: I thought this might not have been long for this world when they didn't announce a creative team beyond issue #6. This title ended up being kind of a mess, without a consistent tone or concept; it might have done better if that early backup hadn't been so...bad. The later ones--with mech-battlesuits and something like the Sea Devils--were a step up, but the main story was kind of incomprehensible.
  • Mister Terrific and Static Shock: Both books I wanted to like, both books that just didn't do it for me. It makes me fairly uneasy that DC's cancelling two titles featuring minority characters, especially when none of the new books (apparently, so far) have minority leads. I wouldn't be surprised to see Static popping up soon, but I'd like to see DC do a real push with some of the other Milestone properties. Innaworld where superheroes are mistrusted and feared, a book about superhuman gangs like "Blood Syndicate" seems like it'd be a really good fit. In fact, I'd love to see a "Steel" book where he became the primary superhero in a city where ostracized metahuman teens found acceptance (and too often, violence) in meta-gangs. Wrap Intergang around it as the reason for the explosion in meta-gene activations and a recruitment agency/old-mob rival to the rising Blood Syndicate of meta-gangs, and you've got the recipe for a pretty good superhero crime comic.
  • Hawk and Dove and Blackhawks never made my pull list, so I can't say I'm sad to see them go. It's probably for the best for "Hawk and Dove," because past history suggests that "Rob Liefeld scripting and drawing a monthly comic" is not a sustainable situation.
And for the newcomers:
  • Batman, Incorporated is no surprise, although I didn't expect to be getting it quite so soon. I should probably finally read the "Leviathan Strikes" book.
  • Earth 2 is the other previously-announced title, James Robinson and Nicola Scott's Justice Society book. I'll be interested in seeing how this title works out; I've been pretty cold on Robinson in recent years, but I'm enjoying "The Shade" well enough, and he helped put the Justice Society back on the map in their last big relaunch, so maybe the return to more familiar environs than the Justice League will result in a marked improvement. I'll at least be checking this one out, and I'm cautiously optimistic. At the very least, though, it'll be pretty.
  • Worlds' Finest seems like a pleasant surprise. Based on various interviews and some dot-connecting, it looks like Huntress, Power Girl, and possibly Black Canary are stranded on Earth-New-52, which makes BC's whole relationship with Starling and Barbara interestingly wrinkled. It also makes me wonder just what Helena's connection is to Italy, without the mob background, but it's not as if there's no reason for a Wayne-kid Bat-family member to go globetrotting.
  • G.I. Combat sounds like it's poised to succeed where "Men of War" failed, with a little more well-defined focus and a better distribution of interest between the main and backup stories. I kind of wish it were called "Weird War Tales," given its stated focus of Haunted Tank and War that Time Forgot stories, but I suppose that leaves it open to more Sgt. Rock or other stories--and there's not necessarily a "Weird" element to the Unknown Soldier. I'll definitely give this one a shot.
  • Dial H: As a big "Dial H for Hero" fan, I'm excited to see the concept making a comeback, and with a nice Brian Bolland cover to boot. This is probably the book that most excites me from this announcement.
  • The Ravagers: And this is the one that least interests me. I'll re-evaluate once we see who the characters are (no doubt Rose Wilson, spinning out of "Superboy"), but I have no desire to read "Teen Titans," Howard Mackie and Ian Churchill aren't exactly a draw, and I'm barely even interested in the "Superboy" title, despite being more inclined toward reading it. The "Young Justice" line of the New 52 is the one that least holds my interest at this point, which is a shame, because you'd think it would be a focal point to draw in new readers. Then again, I'm not exactly a new reader.


LurkerWithout said...

"It's probably for the best for "Hawk and Dove," because past history suggests that "Rob Liefeld scripting and drawing a monthly comic" is not a sustainable situation."


Tom Foss said...

Yeah, I saw that. In fact, it reminded me that I never posted the post that's now posted above this post, which addresses that subject.