April 9, 2006

Comics-Related Rant (Spoilers Abound)

Right now, I'm ticked off at DC Comics.

No, they didn't torture me, or feed bad tuna to my cat...but right now, I can't help but feel that there's a sense of "who-cares-'cause-we-sure-don't" in this week's books.

First, Superman Batman # 24 - my bad for jumping in mid-arc, but one major - and I mean major - faux pas occurred.

So, let me get this straight - Batman meets Batwoman (his presumably female counterpart) and, after tests, concludes that they have "identical DNA".

Bull...you don't need to be Polite Scott to know that men have XY chromosomal pairs, and women have XX pairs. Since (presumably) Batwoman was not Bruce, there is no way they could have "identical DNA." And for you fanboys - please don't e-mail and/or comment to me that I'm "taking this too seriously". Bad science hurts us all.

Just as bad comics...and I'm reserving the bulk of my contempt for Identity Crisis # 6.

Why? Ok, they teased us with the "return of the mulitverse" (a non-event in and of itself), which I thought was cool. But this issue outlines everything that is wrong with event comics.

First, the foreshadowing is laid on so thickly you would think Geoff Johns' middle name was Straczynski. I mean, the new Blue Beetle armor causes GL power rings to "be afraid"? The odd little exchange between Green Arrow and Batman? What's that about? (I'm probably the only person outside of Dial B for Blog who disliked this issue. It's left a really bad taste in my mouth).

There's also the whole meta-commentary with Conner Kent and "Superboy Prime". I know what Johns is trying to do - compare old-fashioned morality with the "darker tones", but it's hard to reconcile that with a two page sequence in which Psycho Pirate hints at assaulting an unconscious Power Girl, and then he gets his eyes - and entire head - poked out by Black Adam. There's the "I always find a way out" line, which insults the intelligence of the average comics reader.

But what gets me is the "reboot" - after all this, we get a "new earth." Not "our earth", not "the return of the mulitverse" but a "new earth" that DC will spend 20 years reconciling all of the inconsistencies until the next major event comic.

At least the original Crisis on Infinite Earths told a story - a story about a threat so huge that heroes across worlds came together. It was about sacrifice (Barry Allen, Kara Zor-El, and so on). It was about making a more cohesive universe out of intricate history, and deaths had meaning. In Infinite Crisis, the universe is reborn out of cynicism - sacrifices are made out of economics (so many bloggers have posted on the Superboy lawsuit, it seems superfluous), rebirths occur for less than noble reasons (let's face it - who really wanted Hal Jordan back as Green Lantern?), and the universe is simply a springboard for more bad comics.

So, dear readers, after you read this and take the comment poll in the sidebar, let's take the advice of my fellow blogger/well-read intellectual/all around cool guy Greg...and just say no to more event comics. Spend your money more wisely...but buying Homercat and Andy's merchandise.

Remember, friends - if we don't read bad comics, maybe they'll stop making bad comics.

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