The “New” DC Universe!
My first guy reaction was – WHAT. THE. FUCK. You’re restarting ALL of your comics at #1? That’s . . . insane! Even Action Comics? That’s the longest running comic book in American history! What about Batman Inc? Are there still gonna be Batmen all around the world? And will somebody please think of the children!!!!!!! (then there is prolonged sobbing)
But then the more I got to thinking about it the more excited I got. The truth is (whether the naysayers want to admit it or not) numbers in comic books really don’t mean anything in the long run. Really think about it. BATMAN: HUSH started at like 600something but if you pick up the graphic novel at Barnes and Noble or a similar bookstore it’s the first thing you’d ever read and you can follow it pretty easily. True comic books are serial in nature but they always seem to lend themselves to letting new readers in no matter what the number is. THAT being said, I totally get DC’s logic with this decision. It’s about attracting new readers and wanting to excite their current fans. The reactions whether good or bad show just how passionate their fans really are.
Truth be told some of the decisions I’m kinda bummed about such as – Stephanie Brown is no longer Batgirl, Swamp Thing has his own comic (seriously, he is a stupid character to me), Wally West is MIA, and Dick Grayson is no longer Batman (although truth be told I knew it was coming [that’s what she said]). Stephanie is an awesome Batgirl to me and that title is one of my current favorites. Swamp Thing is just a stupid character and I feel like Brightest Day was this huge waste just to bring him into the DCU. If that’s what they were doing then it could have just been like a six issue mini series called The Return of Swamp Thing (boom! I’m brilliant). Where is Wally West? He has not been mentioned in any of the solicitations. As much as I love Barry Allen as the Flash I still wish Wally could be apart of it in some form or fashion. But hey, what do I know right? Also, I feel like Dick has really come into his own as Batman. He is a very different Batman than Bruce and I feel like that’s what that particular character needed. But then again, Nightwing is a great hero and I look forward to him returning to that role.
As much as I’m not pleased with some of the changes there are a few that I’m very very excited about – Superman’s new costume and history, the return of the classic JLA and a new origin for them (by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee!!!!), Barbara Gordon being Batgirl, Damien being Robin to Bruce’s Batman, and the new Aquaman series. Superman (in my opinion) was in desperate need of something fresh and different. Grounded started off pretty awesome but has since been kinda meh (at least to me – but I don’t think I’m alone in thinking that). Grant Morrison being on Action Comics seems like the best idea since Geoff Johns being on Justice League (the announcement was only a week apart . . . ). But still! It’s very exciting to me. Also, Superman’s history is so well known that at this point it’s pretty stale so a new history along can bring along new stories. That just gets me excited as a fan. I’m also tired of reading the same old – I’m Superman and I’m awesome and everyone loves me stories. It’s about time we got back to some – Well I dunno about this guy kinda stuff again. I’ve stopped reading Justice League since Dwayne McDuffie left the book because I felt like the stories weren’t up to par with what they should be. Like, in my mind, the Avengers books were FAR superior because the characters were examined alongside of crazy action stories taking place. I feel like Johns will be able to bring that back to the book. And Jim Lee on pencils is just icing on the cake (the best icing ever by the way). Also, I agree with Lee and Johns that the JLA never had a truly kick ass origin. I’m looking forward to seeing what they have in store. Now, as much as I loved Stephanie being Batgirl I’m REALLY looking forward to Barbara putting on the cape and cowl again. Since I’ve been a comic fan I’ve never actually read a story with her as Batgirl. This definitely gets me excited to see where the story is gonna go. Also, Gail Simone writing Barbara Gordon is just genius!! I’m glad that Damien is sticking around and is gonna continue being Robin. The truth is that I really really HATED this character when he was introduced. I actually hated him until Batman and Robin #1. That’s when I really started to like the character. He was no longer just a brat who happened to be Bruce Wayne’s son – he was now a young man trying to find his place in the world and live up to his father’s reputation. THAT’S good storytelling! The one comic I was truly looking forward to was Aquaman if only for the inclusion of Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis. They MADE Green Lantern for me. They really took this character from “eh, the comic is pretty good I guess” to “Holy shit! This is the best comic ever!!” From Blackest Night to Brightest Day I’ve never been disappointed with their storytelling abilities.
Granted, this change may end up not being everything I hope it will be. But I have high hopes that DC will make this worth our while. I’ve been promoting this a lot to my friends and family hoping to get some new faces in my local comic book store on Wednesdays. Good luck DC! I’m excited to see where this is all gonna go! :D
Ps – When the HELL are we gonna get a release date for Batman: Earth One??