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Oct 17th, 2009 06:17 PM
Primortal Another good book to pick-up, that I enjoyed at least, was the current Hercules stories from Marvel. Oh and Nova.
Feb 11th, 2009 12:20 AM
elementalblazer I heard it was supposed to be an elsewhere story, but Didio wanted to make a cross over.
Feb 9th, 2009 08:45 AM
Alcibiades Max

I think the tie ins express what I consider to be one of the failings of the Marvel and DC universes. They annoy me as giant cohesive universes.

I like them internally, and I love say, a lot of Batman arcs, when I can treat them with a loose grip on continuity and a showpiece for my love of a character, but tie-in's remind me of some annoying problems present by having all of your superhero's inhabit the same world.

Things like... anytime a low-rent hero is challenged with the destruction of the world (or a major city, or you know, just anything big time), how come the big dogs don't step in to do something. Once DC reminds me that all of their comics take place in one planet (for the most partY), everytime a villain points a death ray at a major city and makes his intentions known, I wonder why Superman doesn't do something about it and leaves it to the far weaker player I'm reading about. I mean, I don't always keep up on his trades, so maybe he's busy off planet or something, but I'd think if he was just doing his usual shtick he might get off his butt to spare ten seconds to save a city.

Also, all the confusion about diety's, types of magic, etc. It becomes constraining. When they fold stories into their universes, suddenly characters who made deals with the devil (like the Original Ghostrider), now have to be dealing with demons who are just pretending to be the devil. Or say, if they were on the run from a govt. conspiracy, but now we want to fold them into the universe, we have to make sure that what they thought was a conspiracy was already one of the major villainous govt. organizations we've already defined operating under a different name, that takes a lot out of the character for me, it constrains some of the individuality for new characters and arcs, when they have to deal with existant forms.

I could read an episodic comic forever, like I can read tons of Sherlock Holmes, and I love coherent paced continuities that have an ending (like say, Battlestar Galactica, which hasn't ended yet but won't be running forever), but mainstream comics inhabit some strange middle ground that turns me off of them.
Feb 9th, 2009 06:54 AM
the Platinum Poppy I haven't read any of this yet but I love Grant Morrisson. In my opinion his take on the X-men was the peak of that series, then it went downhill and although I occassionally read the books I can't really be bothered to care about them. So I have to read this stuff... but first we'll make it our project at home to buy and read all the old crisis books. I guess that will take some time.
Feb 8th, 2009 10:29 PM
Protoclown Max: Fist pretty much ignores current Marvel continuity, for the most part. Check out the first trade, and I bet you'll be hooked (it's a nice quality trade too with good paper stock).
Feb 7th, 2009 02:52 PM
Nick I have avoided Final Crisis like the plague.
Feb 7th, 2009 01:02 PM
mburbank Does "Fist" totally or mostly ignore current marvel continuity?

FF and Cap both pay as little attention to it as possible, and they are my two favorite marvel books.
Feb 7th, 2009 12:09 PM
Protoclown
Quote:
Originally Posted by Graystreet View Post
I haven't read Iron Fist though, I try avoid comic books that seem doomed, so I don't have to experience the sadness of random cancellation, I'll have to pick it up now that I've got your recommendation.
I can understand that mentality. If you'd told me two years ago that Iron Fist would be one of my favorite books I would have laughed at you. But it totally is, and it's going to be around for a while too if it maintains this quality (and sales). Start from the beginning on this one though...they've already got a couple trades out.

Max, I've been enjoying Millar's FF run as well. So Marvel definitely still has some good books, you've just got to know where to look for them.
Feb 7th, 2009 04:25 AM
Rufus the Perturbed This is why I stopped reading comics. Caveman superhero? Batman sent back to prehistory? Head....hurts...AAAAAAHHHHHH!
Feb 6th, 2009 09:12 PM
mburbank I like the current run on FF. It basically ignores Marvel's current continuity.
Feb 6th, 2009 07:41 PM
Graystreet
Quote:
Originally Posted by Protoclown View Post
Immortal Iron Fist is probably the best superhero book being published at the moment, by any company. Daredevil and Captain America are highly worth reading as well.

Ooh, I forgot about Daredevil, the Lady Bullseye storyline has been great, I hate the art style though, it's got that cheap look like they had someone pose for pictures, then ran 'em through a Photoshop filter. Good thing I mentioned that I was going off the top of my head. :P


I haven't read Iron Fist though, I try avoid comic books that seem doomed, so I don't have to experience the sadness of random cancellation, I'll have to pick it up now that I've got your recommendation.
Feb 6th, 2009 07:16 PM
Protoclown
Quote:
Originally Posted by Graystreet View Post
I cannot tell you a single title worth reading from Marvel off the top of my head.
Immortal Iron Fist is probably the best superhero book being published at the moment, by any company. Daredevil and Captain America are highly worth reading as well.
Feb 6th, 2009 03:08 PM
Graystreet 52 was great, the current New Krypton storyline is great.


I cannot tell you a single title worth reading from Marvel off the top of my head. I liked Machine Man in Marvel Zombies 3, but that is over. I don't really see the point in Dark Reign, since Komodo should just pop a cap in Osborne and end the storyline.

Heck, all comic books are better pretty crappy now besides Superman, Supergirl and Adventure Comics. I dropped Walking Dead after that one guy started bawling about wanting to shoot Gimpy, the one handed idiot, I didn't like the end of the prison storyline, it was a silly tabula rasa ending that only happened because the writer got bored. but the storyline has totally lost all of its organic nature since they first encountered The General. Not to mention that each issue seems to be getting smaller and smaller, but containing more and more filler.

I remember thinking while reading one of the last issues I read "What just happened?" and not in the good way. They drove for a few minutes, somebody went to pee, got attacked by a zombie, the zombie got killed, two characters talked for two or three panels, it was over. It wasn't even good talking, it was standard macho posturing that does nothing to establish anything.
Feb 6th, 2009 02:52 PM
DavidFullam If I had hung around then Identity Crisis alone would have made me march on DC with the flaming torches.
Feb 6th, 2009 11:29 AM
Protoclown You must have a track record of making really horrible decisions
Feb 5th, 2009 10:27 PM
DavidFullam I am so glad I ditched DC years back. Best decision I ever made.
Feb 5th, 2009 09:37 PM
Graystreet Peter Parker was a perfect example of the greatness that is possible with your typical superhero comic (and television show, comic strip, and comic books in general) by which I mean, a character created with a beginning (origin) and a middle (Status Quo) he started out as a rascally teenage boy, lost a love, grew into a rascally young man, got married, grew into a man, became a teacher and widely accepted by the population at large, even becoming an avenger, then Jose Quesada (Hint; if the writers of a superhero movie use your name for a rapist, and then kill that character off in the most brutal death of the entire movie, find a new job.) decided that as opposed to doing the totally organic thing of letting this thirty year old man let go of his fifty billion year old aunt, he should sell his wife to Satan, so he can complain about the lack of fictional wheat-based foods.


Another great example, and this one still exists, is Black Lightning, originally a racist stereotype that wore a break-dancing outfit and existed simply to be Africa American, they went so far as to make him from the ghetto (albeit, Metropolis's ghetto.) but he has recently grown into an interesting, useful character between his appearances in various books.
Feb 5th, 2009 07:45 PM
Protoclown Yeah, but that's really not good either if the status quo is never changed and they're always just spinning their wheels. Granted, the status quo rarely changes in truly substantial ways (see Barry Allen), but at least the characters have evolved slowly over time.
Feb 5th, 2009 05:27 PM
HowardC I really hate this kind of crap because as a casual comic book reader it makes it completely impossible for me to get into any series I want to read! Comic books, at least as an actual comic book (marvel and dc make all their money off of tv/movies and merchandising now days) are dying a slow death, never becoming fully main-stream like other mediums and the reason imho is this sort of crap. I have no problems with writers making long compaigns of universe altering arcs and crazy visits to alternate universes, but perhaps it's time for comic books to take a page from the more popular mediums and implement the "saturday morning cartoon" laws.

1. All characters shall remain in the same clothes, drawn exactly the same way forever!
If for some reason any of the character's costumes need to be changed, the series must end in leu of a new series starring the same characters.

2. Any problems or journeys involving parallel worlds or crossovers with other series are fine, but they must be COMPLETELY RESOLVED by the end of the story arc. By "resolved" I mean anything that happened must be wrapped up in such a way that anyone who missed the arc would never know it or could be filled in in a few seconds.

3. Main characters never age or die. If they do age or die, then the series must END!

I think a perfect example of how to properly do a strange, universe-altering story-arc is the recent "Angel: After the fall" I don't want to spoil it for anyone, but basically the way it is wrapped up, we are right back where we started when the tv series went off the air and the story-line doens't interfere with the ongoing buffy comic one bit.

In other words, the way to properly do a universe-altering comic is to not really alter the universe!
Feb 5th, 2009 12:55 PM
mburbank Alcebiades;

I think what you're looking at and being irritated by, are the problems inherent in what I call long form fiction, and I think I discussed in one or another of my 'Hey Dork' columns.

I'm sure there are folks out there with more letters after their name then I currently have who have identified this form and called it something else, but whatever it is, in terms of fiction is a pretty modern thing.

you can find it in any fiction with multiple writers, some nod to continuity and a fairly long time frame.

The longest examples would be soap operas, about which I know next to nothing, but I gather some of them are still on the air that began on radio and feature an admittedly strained but ongoing continuity. You find the same thing in multi season television series, and comic books.

It isn't just a young art form, which al by itself accounts for lots of failure, it's a collaborative art for with all the pitfalls of any collaboration (movies, theater, group sex) plus it has an evolving dynamic. Not only do all the creators not know each other, same of them are sepearted by generations at this point.

What I admire about Morrison is that he treats comics like an art form and takes a whack at accepting and incorporating it's problems, strictures and limits.

I also like one issue stories or short arcs that don't deal with continuity, or thumb their noses a it or just go along with a good yarn without worrying about it. BUT I credit Morrison with taking a look at long form for what it is and trying to do something with it.

The tie ins are what I think are a mistake. Not only is it too expensive, but you can't count on them to be readable, let alone in a league with the major work.

If a writer counts on tie ins to fill in the blanks, or even flesh out the story, he's partly responsible if they suck and fully responsible if he leaves gaping holes in his own stuff others don't fill.

It's problematical, and I can't imagine what the vast majority of readers make f the whole mess. I think they just probably ignore it and move on
and that's fine for an audience, but I think writers do to, and that is one of the big pitfalls in a longform fiction
Feb 5th, 2009 11:27 AM
Graystreet I only skipped four and five, I think, but this was just bad. Batman's death was silly, and the fact that he used the Omega Sanction? What purpose did that serve beyond NOT killing Batman? For those of you not geeky enough to recall, all the Omega Sanction does is teleport the individual to an alternate universe, one that theoretically will be a bad universe, while destroying (in some stories, not all.) a duplicate version of their body in this universe.

I can only assume that due to the constant flux of the multiverse at Batman's time of death, he was teleported to a random point in time on the standard DC Earth, meaning that within time, probably a few weeks, Booster Gold or another time traveler will find him and bring him to the present so he can grimace and say "I'm done being Batman! I'm not worthy! I killed Darkseid!" then toss his cowl dramatically at Dick Grayson or New Dick Grayson, or New Dickina Grayson.


I can never remember all the Robins names, he's had like five in the current version, hasn't he? One that is Nightwing, one that is a girl, now Spoiler, one that is legally his son because Captain Boomerang finally got that one-in-a-million kill, one that died and was never shown, but decided he wanted nipples on his costume so they shot him.
Feb 5th, 2009 11:10 AM
Alcibiades I think, the problem with comics is becoming that it's just getting absurd to assume that the same characters have done SO much.

All great fiction has a beginning, middle, and end (even if they weren't planned at inception), but comic heroes stories drag on forever in the mainstream. I'd like for someone to figure out how many times Superman has saved the world, apparently died, fell in love, lost said love, traveled to an alternate dimension, and bested a plan of Lex Luthors. I don't care how cool Superman is, his life is not going to just have THAT MUCH ADVENTURE.

I just can't read about any of the major Marvel or DC players anymore because I know I'll leave the whole thing unsatisfied and unresolved. So I tend to stick to things more like Preacher, Sandman, etc. I usually wait until a big bulk is out and then read it in one shot. Oh, and the Runaways, that's good stuff.
Feb 5th, 2009 06:43 AM
Purple Man Whoa. I came in here, tried to devour those opening two paragraphs, then saw the slabs of commentary. Screw this shit; one hideously out-of-control multiverse is enough for me, thank you.

To be honest, my DC fandom always began and ended with Babs Gordon. I can only be so much of a nerd.
Feb 5th, 2009 03:34 AM
Primortal My problem is kinda the same as everyone else's, but it didn't leave me with love for Final Crisis, or the enormous apparent ego-stroking that Grant Morrison seems to have accomplished here. Shit happened for seemingly no reason, with no warning or with seemingly little care, feeling mainly done just to be "daring and edgy" just to prove that they (or he) could do this. And don't get me started on those f'n tie-ins, which DC's probably set a record for in "Useless F'N tie-ins" that only served to further clutter up the whole damn narrative.

To me this wound up being more of an actual clusterfuck than Secret Invasion, I could at least follow THAT mega event, and didn't need to collect every god-damn tie-in, and apparently have an extensive knowledge of Marvel history, (even moreso than I already DO) just to scratch the surface of what was really going on.

I'm hoping we're really done with the Crisis-stuff now... but part of me knows that this is probably only going to get worse.

At least we have the "Blackest Night", and "Return of Barry Allen" stuff to look forward to. e_e
Feb 4th, 2009 04:49 PM
MallardMan I read 6 out of 7 issues of Final Crises (I missed Issue 5) and Superman Beyond. I've been reading comics for pretty much my entire life, and honestly... I found it to be masturbatory. Grant Morrison lecturing me on how he thought story telling should work. I think that sort of thing can be interesting, but I don't think it's fitting as a universe hanging work. The whole thing is just a meta-textual exercise, and what's more, I think Morrison made a conscious effort to try and make it impossible to understand. That last issue especially, where he told half in flashback and even the flashbacks had sudden jumps through time, plus the fact that he seems to have just thrown in every idea he had... Look, I'm with you in some respects, Max. He did some interesting things, some of the individual moments in it are incredibly interesting, but I think that looking at it as a whole, it's just a mess. It's Morrison being paid to be self-indulgent and DC not having any editorial control over what he was doing.

I'm sick of events. I'm sick of everyone writing just for trades. The fact of the matter is, we don't have writers anymore who can tell a solid story in twenty two pages, and that sucks. I know that plenty of people out there think that single issues are crap compared to long stories, but they don't get it. The truly great comics are the ones where you can pick up any issue without having read the whole, but if you read them all you can actually see an arc to the characters. Morrison can't even write a single trade that works.
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