So DC has made their major announcement that they will be re-launching every title in September. Also every book will be available digitally the same day it is released to the comic stores.
Of course this blows up the DC post that Lee and I have coming next week, but opinions are impacted at points and time and I’m willing to let my old viewpoint be published after this new viewpoint.
Much of what I’m thinking is almost random so:
1) Long overdue. DC was languishing with their super hero line with only the Bat books holding my interest. Outside of those books I could have dropped every DC super hero title.
2) The direct market has become an anvil around the neck of the growth of the comic market. With the iPAd and other table style computers the digital age for comics has arrived. Of course charging $3 for a digital version is not going to garner great sales. DC has to realize that the digital market will be more of a new market place and we old print people will migrate slowly to that market place. The brick and mortar stores are in for some rough times and many will not survive.
3) Throwing the baby out with the bath water. I just have a bad gut feeling that Dick is back to being Nightwing and on a personal level I will be bummed. Of course with massive change everyone should be upset because we all have things we liked.
4) Didio is one of the major architects of this change. Isn’t this the same guy who got rid of Connor Hawke, Wally West, Ryan Choi and Kyle Rayner (for the most part) in favor of staying with the same stale characters.
5) The Silver Age started in 1960/1961 after 50 years I think we need to redo everything. It is a bold and daring plan and I applaud DC in taking the gamble. This was desperately needed. Now I only hope they allow their characters to grow and change going forward.
6) I’m glad I’m not a retailer anymore. How the heck do you order this stuff? The creative teams will be all important, but boy the changes better be heavy duty to get people’s attention. So far the announcements and rumors feel a little meek for this type of change. When COIE came out in 1985 they were going to radically shake up the DCU and chickened out. This time they better make it work.
7) Bottom line, tell good stories. Back when Loeb and Lee were on Batman the Hush storyline was a good story (at the start), the book sold like hotcakes. So bravo to all the changes but it will be a major flop if the stories suck.
8) Geoff Johns and Jim Lee on Justice League. My first thoughts, Johns hasn’t written any good stories for awhile, with Superman Secret Origin being his best stuff lately and Lee better be five issues ahead because he can’t make a monthly deadline. This appears to be the centerpiece for the new DCU and if it can’t hit a monthly schedule all the buzz dies in a heartbeat.
9) I bet DC has a trap door to pull the plug on all of this. I’m guessing that they have built in an escape hatch in case the entire idea flops. As an executive I would want to know what they plan to do if the idea is DOA. Let’s read Flashpoint carefully for the escape from this new reality.
10) If this succeeds Marvel will be forced to follow suit.
11) Didio, Harras and Johns track record is unimpressive. Johns is stuck on the Silver Age, Didio has editorially mandated stuff and screwed up titles like no one else (Outsiders jumps to mind as well as Sean McKeever on Teen Titans and McDuffie on the JLA) and Harras has done what exactly?
No matter all these thoughts, what this has done is has me excited about Flashpoint and excited about DC in general. I know they are going to disappoint me with Batman and I’m worried where Grant Morrison is in all of this, but I’m hopeful it will be good. Of course we will probably get a young hip Ollie Queen written by Scott Lobdell and art by generic super hero artist. Instead I want to see a new Green Arrow written by Jeff Lemire with art by Tim Sale, in other words make it different.