Friday, June 3, 2011
Post-Pointal Depression: They're still Didio Comics
There's no home for you here J'Onn, go away. Don't take no Martians 'round here!
See, this is why I like to let things play out and discuss from hindsight, because the second paragraph of yesterday's post went right down the toilet just hours after I posted it. I guess the Martian Manhunter may end up on the JLA 14, but I count 8 members of JLI, and he ain't one of them. Dan Jurgens carries over from Booster Gold and Aaron Lopresti from Generation Lost. Jurgens' previous JLI run with most of these characters was contemptuous, so I'm going to give this a pass, but I will say I'm glad the Vixen got a totally random spot. Also, it's good to see Guy back where he belongs, and Jaime Reyes allowed to exit the shadow the terribly redesigned Booster Gold casts. Let the kid be his own Blue Beetle.
The ten titles announced by DC on Thursday really frame the relaunch, because the new order is the old order with a paint job. A hot writer leaves a book, so hand the reigns over to the book's artist, with zero-to-dubious past experience in that discipline? That's what happened with Francis Manapul on the Flash, joined by colorist Brian Buccellato. Tony Daniel caught a similar deal a couple of years back, but now he's writing (and probably pitch-hitting on art) The Savage Hawkman for Philip Tan. I won't slight Cyberfrog's Ethan Van Sciver if he's aided by Gail Simone, but that new Firestorm Red/Firestorm Yellow/Firestorm Voltron looks seriously funky.
We're also continuing to see writers known only for writing Didio Comics (or worse, Aspen,) like JT Krul (still on Green Arrow) and Eric Wallace. I don't hate Wallace of much as most people for his molten va-jay-jays or splitting of the Atom, because I thought he handled a badly dealt hand with a modicum of grace. Also, I pegged Mr. Terrific as a token character a decade back, and have had to eat those words, so I think I'll give Mr. Terrific (with the fantastic Roger Robinson) a shot. I just hope he gets his jacket back. Krul taking over Captain Atom makes me less optimistic, as it looks like another round of Dr. Manhattan vs. Monarch, and I've grown to really dislike Freddie Williams II. Didio himself will be doing OMAC with Keith Giffen, which kind of kills my interest.
There are a few name writers so far, with Paul Jenkins being quite appropriate on DC Universe Presents: Deadman (plus Bernard Chang on familiar territory,) but then there's the fistful of ugh that is Brian Azzarello on Wonder Woman, especially painful because Cliff Chang on art should be lovely. The one home run remains Johns and Reis on Aquaman, with a freakin' awesome cover that highlights what a scary, dangerous place the ocean is.
Meanwhile, I'm increasingly concerned about the Martian Manhunter. I thought we could rely on the Brightest Day status quo holding up for a while, but if they're going to revise Green Arrow and Firestorm after just one year, the dread of a Jim Lee Martian Manhunter really sinks in. What if they go Ultimate DC JLA, even though Robert Downey Jr. warned "You never go full Wizard?"
A lot of this just feels like the rearranging of deck chairs. It's the same people who couldn't sell us one DC title doing a different one. I'm waiting for some left field creative choices to blow me away, like Chris Ware on 'Mazing Man, Joe Hill on Swamp Thing, or Adam Warren on Power Girl. Something really cool to make me think this is in any real way different from the whimper of One Year Later. I continue to feel like DC Comics is being run by Sidney Mellon and Dan Pussey, which is not a place I want to be.