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  • #31
    Originally posted by pulphero View Post
    The most interesting DC title I found in the June Previews catalog wasn't even in the DC Comics section of the catalog. It's not even new, it's a re-list item (it shipped last August). Originally I wasn't even all that interested in the Art Baltazar stuff, but now it's looking like a more viable option by contrast to the bulk of DC Comics. May have to take a second look at those Tiny Titans TPBs while I'm at it.

    [ATTACH]758[/ATTACH]
    And then there's a new six-issue limited series from DC that just started . . .

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    • #32
      Originally posted by pulphero View Post
      From Secret Invasion through Siege, it was all Bendis, Bendis, Bendis
      Which is why I hated them so very, very much--though I should add, since I've picked up a couple of books he's written due to other factors (the Maguire issue of Guardians of the Galaxy, etc.), Bendis seems to have improved a bit since then, unexpectedly. I still loathe every single thing by Millar, who contributed so much to Civil War.

      Now it's Jason Aaron on Original Sin.
      And it's the only "event" series I'm actually getting because of that.

      Not defending the New 52 DCU in any way, but they're just following a proven pattern that Marvel provided.
      Well, perhaps I should not berate either company as much for events as events--more the content of such events.

      Got to admit I didn't read a whole heck of a lot of Trinity War (only interested because of the Dark crossovers). One thing I'll give DC credit for: "the Dark" tie-in to Forever Evil, "Blight", (even though branded to try to take advantage of it) really was it's own separate sideline crossover event that you didn't need to read Forever Evil to understand (and vice-versa), as long as you accepted the premise that FE was going on elsewhere and had thrown the world into a state of chaos that precipitated events of a supernatural nature.
      And that's precisely how I handled it--indeed, the only things connected to Forever Evil I got were Phantom Stranger and Justice League Dark, both because of DeMatteis. (No idea if Pandora or Constantine were any good.)

      Forever Evil itself (the main series) was a major letdown because ultimately there wasn't much of a conflict between the Justice League and the Crime Syndicate.
      I... I'll be honest, I have basically disliked all of Johns' stuff from Flashpoint on. I'm not sure who's ultimately at fault for the problems with the way DC's heroes have been written the last few years. Before the reboot, there were elements of the stuff I dislike in his writing, but it was comparatively anomalous, and the histories of the characters and world had a lot of basic heroic momentum that kept things from getting too far out of hand. The way he writes the characters now makes me not want to meet them, rather than look up to them, which is really, really sad. I don't know if it's his personal philosophy (I hope not!) or if it's editorial mandate that he has to write heroes as jerks or worse, but where I once sought out his stuff, I now avoid it completely.

      For a little while--yes, really--with the evil Guardians and evil Amazons and bloodthirsty Wonder Woman and Aquaman stabbing henchmen in the back and Hal Jordan blasting and killing aliens--I wondered if DC was gearing up to the big reveal that this was the history of a new Earth-Three. Yes, I think the characters have crossed the lines so much that they have been heading down that animated universe "Justice Lords" direction. And now we have Luthor in the Justice League. And the Lanterns of various colors can't use their powers without slowly killing the universe. Aquaman doesn't even talk with sea life anymore--he just controls it (ironically, at the very time when in the real world we know so much more about the kind of consciousness that whales and dolphins have). It's like there's an editorial mandate to drain every drop of "sense of wonder" out of the DCU as a whole.

      Sorry, when I start getting going like that, that's what comes out.

      I know it will get better. Eventually. Till then, I have a few anomalous DC books to get (see prior list for writers), and mostly Marvel with some Dark Horse Conan and what I can afford from Dynamite (very eager to see what is going to happen with Mars and Tarzan).

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      • #33
        Some of your points are well-taken, Chast. I wish I could express the same optimism about the future, but frankly it looks bleak to me. That's why I'm confining my New 52 reading to "The Dark". That moral ambiguity and tone works well in that subgenre with those (I don't think of them as superheroes) characters. Ironically, it's only there that I've seen an occasional expression of hope show through in the New DCU; maybe it's only put in there to play up the contrast. Stranger is a sinner with remorse trying to do better (ironically traits he shares with Pandora - or is she unjustly cursed as a sinner?, although their approaches put them constantly at odds), Swamp Thing mostly a good man trying to adjust to a vast alteration of perspective, Constantine seems almost bi-polar passive-agressive at times... but at least interesting to read about. Zatanna remains a straight-ahead hero, while Xanadu is more of a complex mystery regarding her motivations, and Deadman just a regular guy way out of his depth with this bunch. The Voice is the most baffling character of all -- I tend to agree with the occasionally-observed comments that for an omniscient and omnipotent being, he sure seems to manipulate a lot of people into needless suffering, which doesn't seem like the best way to endear yourself to anyone or inspire loyalty and trust.

        I still haven't quite figured out the hierarchy of the various supernatural powers and principalities, such as how the Council of Eternity/Seven Sins duality fits into the superstructure of the Voice/Angelic and Demonic Hosts, or how characters like Lucifer Morningstar, Trigon and Non relate to each other, or where Rama the balancer fits in. Then there's the "Underverse" (I think it was named; in PS #20) which sounds a lot (as described) like The Bleed (that non-space in-between multiversal planes), but doesn't look (as depicted) anything like The Bleed, although I guess it could be another aspect of a duality (the Underverse/Bleed being like a two-faced coin). Things do seem to be a little better integrated than was the case for these characters pre-New 52, but I'll hazard a guess there's no 'series bible' explaining it either, and they're sorting it out as they go along. Guess they have to leave some things open as plot fodder for the writers. Then again, maybe I'm looking at it all wrong, and I should just be viewing these seemingly-disconnected entities as inhabiting and drawing their power from different multiversal planes (of a somewhat alien/supernatural nature) like Nightmare or Dormammu's dimension in Dr. Strange, or Asgard and Olympus in Thor.
        Last edited by pulphero; 06-09-2014, 06:17 AM.

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        • #34
          Originally posted by MajorHoy View Post
          And then there's a new six-issue limited series from DC that just started . . .
          I'm sure reading order isn't a huge deal in terms of what us older readers think of as "continuity", but I'd guess they probably started with a relatively small (no pun intended) cast and introduced the various others gradually over the course of the 50 issues published, so I guess I'll just find a copy of the first trade paperback and see if I want to proceed from there.

          It would actually be cooler if DC would produce something similar to Archie's 1000-page digest anthologies (variously titled "Spectacular", "Extravaganga", "Bonanza", "Jamboree", "Comics-palooza", etc.) for its various DC animated/kids titles, but that's probably asking too much from DC. At $15 for 1000 color pages at about 1/2 magazine size (5"x6 3/4") on the old 'mando' type paper, Archie's big anthologies are the best bargain in comics; there's no reason DC couldn't produce one or two of these for each of its various old animated tie-in titles -- basically a "Showcase Presents" reprint collection for kids in smaller size and full color.

          Come to think of it, if there was less market resistance to the slightly smaller size than to black and white pages, this might work for the regular Showcase Presents for adults, too. Archie even has another format they use for their "Best of Archie" series (presumably at least partially aimed at adult collectors due to their cherry-picking of older stories) that is a little bit larger (5 1/4"x7 1/2") with 412 pages for $10. I bet most DC Golden and Silver Age stories would work just fine at that size, and I bet DC could even up the page count to the standard 512-552 they use for Showcase Presents for about $2-3 more. I keep seeing people complaining that they want Golden and Silver Age reprints, but they don't want to pay the going rate of $70 for 300ish-page Archives/Masterworks hardcovers on glossy white stiff paper, and neither do they want to pay $20 for 500ish-page black and white Showcase/Essentials. I get it, they aren't made of money and they don't particularly care about better paper quality, but they DO absolutely require color, and they just want to read the stories for a low price-per-page. It occurs to me that Archie may have come up with a format that has both the solution to those older comics fans' problems, and a certain amount of demographic crossover with people who'd love to buy these Silver Age kid-friendly stories to introduce their own kids to comics. They could even swap out the old DC Showcase and Marvel Essential volumes 1-for-1, converting them to the slightly smaller size with the addition of color, price them at $12-13, and simply change the name of those series to "DC Color Showcase" and "Marvel Color Essentials".
          Last edited by pulphero; 06-09-2014, 05:49 AM.

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          • #35
            Originally posted by pulphero View Post
            . . .
            It would actually be cooler if DC would produce something similar to Archie's 1000-page digest anthologies (variously titled "Spectacular", "Extravaganga", "Bonanza", "Jamboree", "Comics-palooza", etc.) for its various DC animated/kids titles, but that's probably asking too much from DC. At $15 for 1000 color pages at about 1/2 magazine size (5"x6 3/4") on the old 'mando' type paper, Archie's big anthologies are the best bargain in comics; there's no reason DC couldn't produce one or two of these for each of its various old animated tie-in titles -- basically a "Showcase Presents" reprint collection for kids in smaller size and full color.
            Well, I would definitely not be a candidate for something like that . . . as I've gotten older, I've found those downsized jobs are a bit too much work to read.

            (I have a bunch of pocket-size paperback books that Marvel use to put out with early stories reprinted in chronological order, but those are harder to read some 40 years later.)

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            • #36
              Originally posted by MajorHoy View Post
              Well, I would definitely not be a candidate for something like that . . . as I've gotten older, I've found those downsized jobs are a bit too much work to read.

              (I have a bunch of pocket-size paperback books that Marvel use to put out with early stories reprinted in chronological order, but those are harder to read some 40 years later.)
              Boy, that last line of text is ironic.

              Well, of course the DC animated reprints really wouldn't be aimed at readers in their 50s, so I doubt it would be a problem for DC. Then again, that stuff is much more readable at that size (which is actually about 1 1/2 times the size of the mass-market paperbacks; i.e., bigger than Archie's standard comics digest) than Silver Age comics would be.

              EDIT: Oops. Just physically checked the 1000-pager against a regular Archie reprint digest and they ARE actually the same dimensions (except thickness, of course). Could have sworn they seemed a little bigger. Now the other format (the 412-pagers) ARE just a bit bigger, about a third of an inch wider and three-quarters of an inch taller. I know that sounds like "Why would they even bother using a different size, that much of an increase can't make any difference", but I swear those interior pages look like they are much more readable. I'll have to check more closely when I have the time (don't have the book here at the moment), to see if they did anything subtle with the art printed inside, like eliminating perimeter panel gutters ('full-bleed') or manipulating the balloon sizes with Photoshop.

              The size of the "Best of Archie Comics" series is very close to that larger-than-typical manga format used by Dark Horse for its current Lone Wolf & Cub Omnibus series. The smaller, more typical manga format ("tankoban"), is about 3/4" wider and taller than the American mass-market paperback, only a little shorter.
              Last edited by pulphero; 06-09-2014, 05:27 PM.

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              • #37
                The DC Comics Band-Aid Project To Bring Back The Pre-52?

                Originally posted by ChastMastr View Post
                Sorry, when I start getting going like that, that's what comes out.

                I know it will get better. Eventually. Till then, I have a few anomalous DC books to get
                Couldn't help remembering your hopeful optimism, Chast, when I perused the following on Bleeding Cool (to spare you having to use your computer to surf over there, I've simply cut and pasted the text):

                The DC Comics Band-Aid Project To Bring Back The Pre-52?

                "The DC Comics Band Aid* continues to peel off….

                No sooner was the New 52 Relaunch underway (and folks found out that it was a stealth reboot) than people have been asking “when can we get the old stuff back?”

                Superman in his red trunks. Batgirl in her wheelchair. Amanda Waller in her size-plus clothing. Alan Scott in his heterosexuality.

                Well, as part of the comics event that we have dubbed The Band Aid, currently being planned and created in advance to help DC Comics keep putting out books during the publisher’s move from New York to Burbank and masterminded by Dan DiDio and Marie Javins, I am told that it will include Pre-52 versions of various DC characters, face to face with their New 52 counterparts.

                So… who do you want to see return?"


                *the above-named in reference to an earlier post at BC:
                The DC Band-Aid – A Love Letter To DC Comics Fans

                The popular DC Comics game Injustice: Gods Among Us pitted superhero against superhero, supervillain against supervillain, often from a variety of different parallel universes.

                I returned to it the other day after completing it on the iPad a while back, to discover a bunch of new levels, new characters and a Darkseid character challenge. So I’m back into swipe left, swipe left, swipe up territory again. It can be rather addictive.

                But what effect has it had on comic creators?

                I’m told that The DC Band-Aid project as I am still calling it, given no other alternative name, consists of twenty two part stories plus a weekly book running through the two months, totalling 48 books in all.

                But the content will be modelled in part on the playing experience of that game, and others such as Infinite Crisis. Pitting various DC character of various realities together, against each other, with various outcomes.

                What realities, I don’t yet know. But popular amongst such games as the Red Son characters, so that’s probably a lock. So… who would you like to see in combat against each other from the DC Multiverse? And who would you like to see write and draw such confrontations?

                Seriously, DC Editorial will be watching and listening. And, as the title of this piece reflects, one creator described the project to me as “a love letter to DC Comics fans.”

                Are you ready to feel the love?

                My own feeling is that BC's Rich Johnson is merely confabulating scenarios for a hot-button topic for old-school DC fans, in hopes of generating clicks. (In the online world, clicks = ad banner revenue, and you can't blame a person for wanting to make a living generating comic book gossip. If you thought of it first, you'd do anything to avoid having to work a real job, too.)

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                • #38
                  I haven't bothered following this idea of a "love letter" from DC . . . the only letters they know how to write these days to people who enjoyed the Golden Age, old Earth-Two heroes would be a "Dear John" letter.

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                  • #39
                    Come to think of it, the metaphor of DC as a former longtime lover who took all your money, got a major plastic surgery makeover, then then left you in the lurch to run around with all the younger men in town, is pretty fitting here.

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                    • #40
                      G'day

                      I understand your views of DC but are you lot still reading Marvel?

                      Ralph

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by ralphuniverse View Post
                        G'day

                        I understand your views of DC but are you lot still reading Marvel?

                        Ralph
                        I'm only buying All-New Invaders at present.

                        In general, I get tired of Marvel with either erratic scheduling (Hawkeye); constant relaunching books with bright shiny new #1s; constant interruptions for forced crossovers with too frequent, mediocre-to-bad "events" (Original Sin right now, and Axis right on its heels later this year); overly-priced books; and so much more.

                        I would be reading Daredevil, but I got so annoyed that they cancelled the book to relaunch it as a Marvel NOW DAMNIT! title, and had some transition chapters as digital-only. And they left readers hanging who were buying the limited-series All-Winners Squad: Band of Heroes by cancelling it before the final scheduled issue without making the final few issues available in any form.

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                        • #42
                          Originally posted by pulphero View Post
                          Couldn't help remembering your hopeful optimism, Chast, when I perused the following
                          Oh, that would be awesome--we shall see what happens!

                          Definitely eager for the new Sensation Comics as well...

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                          • #43
                            Re Marvel, I'm liking Marvel a LOT more than DC these days. I can only afford a certain number of books at all right now, but there are even a higher number of Marvel books to get when I can afford them or as trade paperbacks.

                            Marvel list of stuff this month that I am getting, basically based on writers (Aaron (which is why Original Sin is the first crossover series I've actually bought in YEARS), Robinson, Davis, Remender, Moore, Slott, the whole Ms. Marvel team, Rucka, Cornell, Claremont, etc.) plus my Logan fix (which I will always buy unless it is by one of the writers I truly, truly dislike, not naming names here):

                            ORIGINAL SIN #3 (of 8)
                            ORIGINAL SIN #4 (of 8)
                            FANTASTIC FOUR #6
                            ALL-NEW INVADERS #6
                            ORIGINAL SINS #1 (of 5)
                            ORIGINAL SINS #2 (of 5)
                            SAVAGE HULK #1
                            MIRACLEMAN #7
                            UNCANNY AVENGERS #21
                            SPIDER-MAN SPECTACULAR #1
                            AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #3
                            AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #1.2
                            MS. MARVEL #5
                            AMAZING X-MEN ANNUAL #1
                            AMAZING X-MEN #8
                            CYCLOPS #2
                            WOLVERINE #8
                            WOLVERINE #9
                            SAVAGE WOLVERINE #20
                            WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN #5
                            NIGHTCRAWLER #3

                            Marvel list of stuff for later when I can:
                            Everything not on the above list by Waid (Daredevil, Hulk), Slott, Aaron (Thor, etc.), and Remender (Captain America), with some other things possibly.

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by ralphuniverse View Post
                              G'day

                              I understand your views of DC but are you lot still reading Marvel?

                              Ralph
                              Some. All New Invaders, Silver Surfer, Daredevil, Iron Man, New Avengers, Winter Soldier... liked the first four issues of She-Hulk but with issue #5, I couldn't even get past the first few pages because of the bad art (hopefully just a fill-in for Javier Pulido?). Haven't made up my mind about Robinson's Fantastic Four. Jason Aaron's Original Sin has been not bad so far. Pretty sure that's about it at the moment. Those are the titles I'm reading for my own entertainment. I skim copies of All New X-Men, Amazing Spider-Man, Avengers and Hulk just to see what's going on with those characters. Savage Hulk definitely looks interesting, but I'm "cautiously reserved" because past experience reminds me that Alan Davis' writing just doesn't live up to his artwork, more often than not. Fingers crossed on this one.
                              Last edited by pulphero; 06-15-2014, 02:21 AM.

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                              • #45
                                G'day,

                                Thanks for the input. Personally I have a much more casual relationship with comics then most here and just pick up series that interest me. I picked up some Captain America which I enjoyed and have a Hawkeye tpb on order because I like the character.

                                Anyone reads digital books?

                                ta

                                Ralph

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