Bluewater Launching Superhero Line With Twilight of the Gods

The infamous Bluewater Productions, a company surviving on unauthorized biographical comics of whichever name has been in the press most recently, is moving back into superheroes with Twilight of the Gods #0. This comic, due out November 9, will retail for a dollar and launch, according to them, “the next wave of comic book awesomeness”.

Artemis

This is intended to serve as an introduction to a new shared superhero universe, only the superheroes are all gods, to avoid the problem of having to, you know, come up with new characters. Four books will launch out of this sampler:

  • Orion: The Hunter, due March 2012
  • Heracles, due May 2012
  • Trident: The Power of Poseidon, due June 2012
  • Artemis, due July 2012

I was going to try to give you credits on the books, but the ads in the back of the sampler only have last names on them. I would think that they would match up to the varied artists used on the sampler, but no dice. The sampler is written by A.E. Stueve with art segments by Oscar Bazaldua, President Nelson and Luis Alonzo, Joel Rasmuessen and Victor Moya, and Gregg Paulsen and Victor Moya.

The plot has the Greek gods dying and being replaced by costume-wearing associates. It’s overwritten and boring to slog through. Good thing that, given the immense gap between the sampler publication and the actual books it’s intended to promote, it will likely be forgotten when it comes time to order the comic miniseries. Each of the books listed above will run four issues and then lead into a team book.

Heracles

This project demonstrates as much creativity as many of Bluewater’s other projects. The title evokes for superhero fans Twilight of the Superheroes, a never-created Alan Moore DC Comics crossover. The characters are public domain. Trident looks like a wannabe Aquaman, while Heracles is a fighting barbarian with a pinhead. His book both uses a version of a character that headlined a Marvel series until recently and has the tagline “the first man of steel”, to tweak DC.

The writer sent me a preview copy (either not having done research on my attitudes toward Bluewater or being desperate enough to hope I’d ignore it, as I’ve done) as part of a press push. They’re hoping that coverage will help them sell the thousand copies they need to have pre-ordered in order to launch. If it was good, I’d tell you, but as it is, I can’t be part of that effort. This book is generic and forgettable. If it’s never printed for low orders, then it’s no loss — and maybe that’s a positive sign that retailers are being more selective.


13 Responses to “Bluewater Launching Superhero Line With Twilight of the Gods”

  1. Aaron Stueve Says:

    I appreciate your honesty. And in all seriousness would like to hear some specifics as to why you thought the book was “generic and forgettable” as well as “overwritten and boring to slog through.”
    I know as a writer I won’t make everyone happy, but I like to make as many people happy as I can. That being said, if you’d email me about your issues with the book I’d like to hear from you. Hell, we can make our discussion public. I’m all for it. Thanks for reading though, and I did notice you didn’t talk much about the art. Did you like that at least? Well, let me know.

  2. Johanna Says:

    I don’t really know how you specify “boring and generic”. I’ve seen it all before and page after page of talk-talk-talk is wearying. There is nothing that stands out about this comic. It could have been assembled by computer in how predictable and flat it all is. Generic also applies to the art, by the way.

  3. Aaron Stueve Says:

    Okay, well thanks for your frankness.

  4. Johanna Says:

    I’m sorry to be so blunt, and thank you for your openness and willing to discuss it.

  5. Aaron Stueve Says:

    It’s cool. And honestly, if you do have more specific complaints (you know, things like this page is bad and here is why or this line of dialogue isn’t doing it for me and here is why) I would be happy to listen, but please email me those, just because, though you may think it is for the better if this book doesn’t see publication, I would like it to. :)

  6. Britt Sullivan Says:

    I wonder about the motivation for this article/review. This seems to be more of a way for the author to further express her negative feelings about Bluewater Productions than actual coverage of Twilight of the Gods. This review is simply taking shots at the company rather than looking at the actual work. From the vague information given about the content of the book, I wonder if the author actually read the book or simply flipped pages. I personally would have liked to be told what the book was about rather than simply being told it is “boring and generic.” Those are broad, abstract terms that are subjective to the writer. As an avid reader I would have liked some explanation as to why the author felt this way. I realize that bloggers are not under the same professional standards of more reputable publications; however, there is still the responsibility to give a somewhat unbiased opinion so that readers can decide if they want to purchase the book or not. Really, if the best descriptive terms to describe the author’s work are “boring and generic” then perhaps the author should not be doing reviews. I looked at the link given to the author’s attitude towards Bluewater, and though I do understand that Bluewater doesn’t always practice the best business that shouldn’t be the driving force behind reviewing a new creative project.

  7. Johanna Says:

    I’m right here, you know, you can ask me your questions instead of talking about “the author” like some person over there.

    The motivation was that I was asked to talk about a book, and I did. I told you what the book was about: “The plot has the Greek gods dying and being replaced by costume-wearing associates. … as an introduction to a new shared superhero universe”.

    If I hadn’t mentioned my history with Bluewater, I would have been attacked for hiding my bias… since I did, you think I’m biased. Can’t win on that one. But speaking of bias, are you the same Britt Sullivan credited with writing the Trident book? Maybe you should mention that to avoid giving the impression you’re impartially upset, instead of being upset because you work on the project I’m criticizing.

  8. Britt Sullivan Says:

    Yes, I am the writer of Trident and I apologize for not mentioning that earlier. Believe it or not I had meant to do so. I didn’t ask any questions in the previous post; I responded to what I thought of your review, and I do stand by the things I said. Let me explain. If I were to say that Slaughterhouse Five is about a time traveler talking with aliens to discuss the dangers of war I would be leaving much out, right? Especially if I let my opinion on the company who published the book sway my opinion. I don’t know if this is happening in your case, but it seems that way. Let me be clear. I would never dream of comparing anyone to Vonnegut, least of all Stueve (HAH),my point is that you simply did not offer enough input on the book other than to say that Trident looks like a “wannabe Aquaman” when he looks nothing like Aquaman. If you want to give a decent review a few concrete references to what you like and/or do not like are needed. You don’t have to spoil the story for readers, but you do have to give more information than you did.

  9. Johanna Says:

    That’s cool, it’s easy to overlook something like revealing you’re getting paid (you are, aren’t you? I hope Bluewater has fixed that little problem) by the company you’re defending. I’m kidding — I really do sympathize with posting a comment and then thinking “oh, rats, I also meant to say …” I’ve done the same thing.

    Regarding plot, I have always erred on the side of avoiding spoilers. Most 32-page-or-fewer comics get a sentence of summary from me unless they’re incredibly complex. I find, as a general idea, that the more a reviewer talks about the plot, the less they have to say about the comic as a review. YMMV.

    I think your position with the company is making it hard for you to see the many concrete things I did say about this issue, but I don’t think anything will be achieved by debating it with you, because you’ve clearly made up your mind about the value of my work. The even-shorter version of this review goes like this: “This book is not good enough to break a boycott for.” (Which is a self-contradictory statement, but oh well.)

  10. Britt Sullivan Says:

    Thanks for your candor. I hope you keep an open mind when the rest of the line comes out.

  11. Ed Sizemore Says:

    Well, it’s hard not to see this as trying to cash in on DC by association. I saw an ad online for the Artemis book and thought was a new DC title based on the female archer of the same name in the DC universe. Also, I can’t think of any comic fan that isn’t going to think of Kirby’s character when they see the name Orion.

    Not to mention that Heracles is a character enjoying some success at Marvel right now.

    Given the vast number of Greek gods, it strikes me as odd that 3 of the 4 titles here share names with existing superhero characters.

  12. Gregg Paulsen Says:

    I’m Gregg Paulsen the Artist of Orion and the art director for the whole line, Johanna, you bais against bluewater is not uncommon, but I have worked for them for 4 years and never EVER had a problem with them, as far as the payment thing, everyone who works for Bluewater signs a backend pay contract, which tells them if your book turns a profit, you will see a % ( usually 15% ) of said profit, now if it doesn’t your not gonna see anything, and that the way it is, its stated in the contract the artists or writers sign before work commences, I will send you the copy of the contract I have with them, I have recieved some monies for some projects I was a part of that turned a profit, and there are others I never saw a dime for, but I got to keep my art work and the work I did got out to the general public, which is all I wanted anyway, these people who complain about non payment for work from bluewater should know better anyway there is NO MONEY in the independent comics scene,NONE, Dryer than my ex wifes vagina, there is no money here at all, I do this mainly cause I love it, unless your marvel or DC theres no money here, now stated above they sign a contract for work and if theres no profit from the books no payment, thats the reality is it fair?, no. Does it suck? Hell Yes!, but that what it is. I mean christ BW printed the book and noone bought it, sad reality but its reality to give you a example: “Paparazzi” a book drawn by me and published by Bluewater, sold only 240 copies…TOTAL, guess who got no money??, if you guessed me you would be right. but you know what I didn’t care, cause it came out, a book has to sell at least 500 to 1000 copies to turn a profit, if no profit is there there nothing you can do but lick your wounds and move on… and that what I am gonna do at this point.

    Now @ Ed’s comments- the WAVE was NOT AT ALL trying to cash in on anything DC is doing hell I didn’t even know that they were revamping everything over there till July, and we announced the line in late march early April, so we beat them to the punch in the announcement dept, but then again, we didn’t know that they were gonna do that, so you can look at it as a coincidence not a cash in. and as for the Artemis ad you saw it has nothing to do with the lame character in the DC universe, our Artemis IS the GREEK Myth, not a throwaway character from Wonder Woman. and I know of a lot of comic fans that won’t think of the Kirby Orion, seeing as ours is The GREEK Myth, and not one of the “Kings” made up heroes, and you also misspelled “Heracles” he’s not “Hercules” we are using the Greek myth of “Heracles” not using what has come before “The Twilight of the Gods” primer was used to set up of little universe of stories to tell, Johanna Bluewater has NOTHING to do with the books other than acting as a publisher, so when the books do come out all I ask is you pick each of them up and give them a read…you may be surprised.

    Gregg Paulsen

  13. Suzene Says:

    “Dryer than my ex wifes vagina”

    Lovely. I’m a classics minor and mythology and superheroes are usually a mix that pushes all of my nerd buttons, but I think I’ll be giving this a skip and spending more money on Age of Bronze.




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