DC Relaunch Titles I’m Looking Forward To (And Why I Don’t Care for the Others)
Now that I’m caught up on writing about the DC relaunch news itself, let’s take a look at the titles announced so far. They’ve been trickling out in themed posts:
- The Big Guns:
Justice League #1 by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee
I’m not excited by the creators, but I will check it out as the flagship; it should be a good indicator of the tone of the line.
- Wonder Woman #1 by Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang
Definitely. Anything Cliff does I read. His work is simply gorgeous. I’m much more ambivalent-trending-to-negative with Azzarello, but I did very much enjoy Doctor 13: Architecture and Mortality by the same team, so hopefully, this will reach those heights. (And can I say how exciting it is to be looking forward to a Wonder Woman book again?)
- Aquaman #1 by Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis
Maybe, depends on a flip-through. I’d like to like the character, but no one seems to know what to do with him. Is it embarrassing to say the only stories I’ve liked were those Sub Diego ones?
- The Flash #1 by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato
No. I have to draw the line somewhere, and I just don’t care enough about this hero, his powers, or reading an artist’s writing debut.
- The Fury of Firestorm #1 by Ethan Van Sciver, Gail Simone, and Yildiray Cinar
Yes. I trust Gail, and high school heroes have lots of potential, especially when they have multiple personalities.
- The Savage Hawkman #1 by Tony Daniel and Philip Tan
Much as I have appreciated Hawkman and his costume in the past (especially when drawn by someone not afraid to make men attractive), the word “Savage” says this isn’t for me. Especially since there’s no mention of Hawkwoman.
- Green Arrow #1 by JT Krul and Dan Jurgens
No. People seem to want to make GA grim, and Krul’s stories are snoozers.
- Justice League International #1 by Dan Jurgens and Aaron Lopresti
Maybe. Much as I appreciate Dan’s craft, I’m not sure what he’s going to do with this title is what I want to read. On the other hand, I’d like to see more international superheroes.
- Mister Terrific #1 by Eric Wallace and Roger Robinson
Yes. Don’t know the creators, but a smart “eligible bachelor” (as the copy has it) has a lot of potential.
- Captain Atom #1 by JT Krul and Freddie Williams II
No. Aside from the Krul curse, they’re emphasizing his power levels and god-like status, and I’m not interested.
- DC Universe Presents #1 by various
Great idea, a continuing series of rotating spotlights, that plays into DC’s history, but I won’t be reading Deadman by Paul Jenkins and Bernard Chang. Just not interesting-sounding. I’m curious to see how long the story runs and who’s up next, though, so count this a maybe.
- Green Lanterns:
Green Lantern #1 by Geoff Johns (him again?), Doug Mahnke, and Christian Alamy
No. Don’t care about the character or Johns’ work with him.
- Green Lantern Corps #1 by Peter J. Tomasi , Fernando Pasarin, and Scott Hanna
No on the second string.
- Green Lantern: The New Guardians #1 by Tony Bedard, Tyler Kirkham, and Batt
No on the rainbow lanterns.
- Red Lanterns #1 by Peter Milligan, Ed Benes, and Rob Hunter
And hell no on the bloody lanterns.
- The Batman books:
Batman #1 by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo
No. I liked Batman, Inc. and I don’t have a need for Bruce Wayne to be the only one bearing the name. Plus, I don’t want to read art by someone known for Spawn.
- Detective Comics #1 by Tony Daniel
- More Batman:
Batman and Robin #1 by Peter Tomasi and Pat Gleason
A family book, as Robin will be Damian, Bruce Wayne’s son. If I felt better about some of the other Batman books, I might try this, but as is, I’m saying no, because I don’t believe it will stand alone.
- Batman: The Dark Knight #1 by David Finch and Jay Fabok
Whoa, deja vu. I’m not reading it now, and I won’t read it then. (My track record in being excited about trying new things took a dive at this point in the post, but better days are coming.)
- The Bat-Women:
Batwoman #1 by J.H. Williams III, Haden Blackman, and Amy Reeder
We’ve been waiting on this for a while, so I’m worried about it building up too much pressure of anticipation, but I’m still buying it.
- Batgirl #1 by Gail Simone, Ardian Syaf, and Vicente Cifuentes
I want to like this, but a) I really liked the existing Batgirl book with Stephanie, and I resent losing her in the rush to bring back the retro (aka publicly known) character versions; b) I really liked Oracle, and I think turning her back into Batgirl is a horrible step back that sends a terrible message about diversity; and c) I have no idea who those artists are, and the look of the book is very important when discussing books about women. You might get a wonderful female hero, or you might get exploitation. Call it a maybe.
- Catwoman #1 by Judd Winick and Guillem March
Ick. No. I don’t want to quote the blurb, but it’s all about “look, boys, a bad girl for you to ogle”.
- Birds of Prey #1 by Duane Swierczynski and Jesus Saiz
A very qualified maybe. It will be very difficult to meet or surpass Gail Simone’s run on this title, and I’m leery of the lack of female creators listed so far, especially when it comes to handling female characters.
- Nightwing #1 by Kyle Higgins and Eddy Barrows
I’d read a comic about happy-go-lucky acrobat-trained-by-Batman Dick Grayson; this is promising “superhuman evil”. Yuck, pass.
- Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 by Scott Lobdell and Kenneth Rocafort
Nah, nothing says “buy me” about “outlaw vigilantes” and “antiheroes”.
- Batwing #1 by Judd Winick and Ben Oliver
I would like to read this, but I need more reason than “he’s a black Batman”. I’m not a Winick fan, and if I had more idea of the concept, this might be a maybe, but for now, no.
- The Dark Side (supernatural titles):
Swamp Thing #1 by Scott Snyder and Yannick Paquette
I don’t think so. I don’t have a need to see the character back, and I’m squeamish of anything promoted as horror.
- Justice League Dark #1 by Peter Milligan and Mikel Janin
This, on the other hand, actually sounds fun, a team featuring John Constantine, Madame Xanadu, and others. Yes.
- Animal Man #1 by Jeff Lemire, Travel Foreman, and Dan Green
Maybe. I like the idea of focusing on daughter Maxine coming of age, and her powers arriving, so long as it’s not “only I am strong enough to handle this, I must prevent her from using them”.
- Demon Knights #1 by Paul Cornell, Diogenes Neves, and Oclair Albert
What, are you kidding me? No. Oh, wait, it’s Cornell. Sadly, still no, but good luck, Paul.
- Frankenstein, Agent of Shade #1 by Jeff Lemire and Alberto Ponticelli
If there were any title spinning out of Seven Soldiers, I never would have guessed this one. No.
- Resurrection Man #1 by Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, and Fernando Dagnino
Wow, that brings back memories. I remember the lenticular cover the first time they tried this series. Maybe.
- I, Vampire #1 by Josh Fialkov and Andrea Sorrentino
No, but nice try. Glad to see it back. (Although what’s with Miss I’m Supernatural, So I’m Naked?)
- Voodoo #1 by Ron Marz and Sami Basri
No thank you.
- Young Heroes:
Legion Lost #1 by Fabian Nicieza and Pete Woods
Yes. I liked the concept when they did it post-Zero Hour, and I expect to like it now — putting future kids in our time period makes the stories more relatable as well as playing up their different attitudes (if done right).
- Legion of Superheroes #1 by Paul Levitz and Francis Portela
Is that right? Super-Heroes used to be hyphenated. I haven’t enjoyed Levitz’s work so far as much as I hoped, but I’ll definitely give it another shot here.
- Teen Titans #1 by Scott Lobdell, Brett Booth, and Norm Rapmund
Heck no. I applaud the DC efforts to go younger, but this looks like someone got the directive to aim young as it applied 20 years ago. And I can’t buy Wonder Girl as a “powerhouse thief”.
- Static Shock #1 by John Rozum, Scott McDaniel, and Jonathan Glapion
Heck yes! Go Virgil!
- Hawk and Dove #1 by Sterling Gates and Rob Liefeld
Well, that’s a bit contradictory — the message is “new, young readers”, but this artist choice only makes sense on the book if you remember the first relaunch. Still, it certainly got people talking. Maybe, especially once the real artist gets put on the book.
So, that’s 39 out of 52 titles announced so far, with Superman books still to come. I’m definitely getting 8 out of the books, with another 9 maybes. 17 out of 39 is 44%, which is a darn good ratio, I think. Certainly more than I look forward to now. It remains to be seen what my track record is three and six months in, but I’m still hopeful.
Update: Seven more books announced today, June 9.
- The Edge:
Stormwatch #1 by Paul Cornell and Miguel Sepulveda
Yay, a Cornell book I will read. Yes.
- Blackhawks #1 by Mike Costa and Ken Lashley
War comics aren’t for me, sorry, especially when plugged by advertising it features “the latest in cutting-edge hardware and vehicles”.
- Sgt. Rock and the Men of War #1 by Ivan Brandon and Tom Derenick
Nope, not here either, although I do wonder about a war comic that pit soldiers against “the DC Universe’s super-villains”. That seems to be missing the point a bit.
- All-Star Western #1 by Justin Gray, Jimmy Palmiotti, and Moritat
I didn’t like their Jonah Hex and its frequent rapes before, and I don’t expect to like it with a new title.
- Deathstroke #1 by Kyle Higgins, Joe Bennett, and Art Thibert
Not for me, although there is an audience for this kind of thing, especially among teenage boys.
- Grifter #1 by Nathan Edmondson, CAFU, and BIT
- OMAC #1 by Dan DiDio, Keith Giffen, and Scott Koblish
I refuse to read any comic with DiDio listed as a creator. They’re horrible. Nice perk to running the company, though.
So that brings the tally up to 9 yes, 18 yes/maybe total, out of 46. I’ve dropped to 39% I’m interested in, but that’s ok. If they really aim to be diverse, no one should want to read all the books anyway.
Update: Wait, there’s two more, which leaves only four left, likely all Superman books.
- Suicide Squad #1 by Adam Glass and Marco Rudy
What happened to the idea that female characters needed to be costumed reasonably? Clearly not a book for me.
- Blue Beetle #1 by Tony Bedard, Ig Guara, and Ruy Jose.
This, on the other hand, is great to see. I enjoyed the John Rogers series a lot, and I hope Bedard can capture some of the magic of the fully realized supporting cast.
Update: And the last batch were promoted today, June 10. As expected, they were the Superman titles.
- Action Comics #1 by Grant Morrison and Rags Morales
Superman’s back as the “first super hero”, which may explain why there’s no Justice Society title. Frankly, I’d be more excited if I hadn’t been doing this all week — and the longer I think about this relaunch, the more I resent losing Oracle and what she meant to people. So I’m no longer the optimistic customer I was.
- Superman #1 by George Perez and Jesus Merino
- Supergirl #1 by Michael Green, Mike Johnson, and Mahmud Asrar
Deaged again, it seems, because teenage girls are easier to cope with than grown women.
- Superboy #1 by Scott Lobdell, R.B. Silva, and Rob Lean.
Lobdell again? Must be nice to be buddies with the guy now running editorial.
How about you? Which are you looking forward to? And will you be buying in print or digitally?