Over the course of the last few years we have seen these occur and all are bad moves:
1) Didio and Lee promoted to Co-Publishers.
2) Bob Harras hired as EIC
3) A house style implemented
4) Marketing take precedence over story
5) A withdraw from even friendly fan press
6) A exodus of writing talent
7) Editorial driving the bus, making writers into script writers
8) Cross over and add on books to suck the strength of any successful book
9) Karen Berger leaving Vertigo
10) Vertigo contract changed
I have pulled further away from DC then I have in many, many years due to all of this. Yet I still want to like the company. I get excited that Griffen is back on Legion and then he is gone after only one issue. I get excited that Andy Diggle will be on Action comics and he is gone. I get excited that Fialkov will be writing two Green Lantern series and then he is gone. DC launches Sword of Sorcery and Threshold as $4 books with less support then even their war books. Instead of trying to bring a new genre along most of the books were priced at $4 in a $3 market place that DC has created. The new DCU has a squishy history where a reader has no clue of what has or has not occurred with a character. You can sense the changes being made on the fly.
Even all of that could be forgiven if DC would leave series alone and let readers enjoy what they are producing. Instead we get Zero month, now we get Villain month, we get other books being told to do Zero Year issues to correlate with the Batman title. We get another Green Lantern cross over announcement. The first issues since the new creative teams come onboard have not even all been released yet. I was looking forward to reading each writer’s work and see where they were going to take these series and now another cross over. Batman Zero Year was suppose to be a stand alone, but since the other Bat books apparently can’t survive on their own I have heard that many of the books will be running there own Zero Year (Update Action, Flash, Green Arrow and others will be part of it now). Way too water down a concept. Also nice way to screw up a story line someone is already working on. On one book it is unique on five other books it is a gimmick. Legion gets cancelled and I hear that we are getting the old JLI team doing a JL 3000. Instead of my beloved LOSH it is future versions of the JL. DC saw how Marvel has continued to expand the Avenger franchise and is just doing the same with JL.
Like summer blockbusters becoming the only movies made, Marvel and DC are now such slaves to their corporate masters that soon every title will be related to Batman, Superman, Justice League, Avengers and X-Men. From a top down look I understand it, but it is short sighted because the richness of a shared universe is destroyed with out a more diverse line up. Plus once you overuse a concept it all gets old and eventually the staleness drives people away or at least fans like me.
How do I get excited about Avengers AI, Mighty Avengers, Superman/Wonder Woman and Justice League 3000 when we are seeing stuff like Saga, Lazarus, Sex, Bounce, Chin Music, Ten Grand, the Thrillbent website, Uncanny (from Dynamite), Red Team and more coming from everyone else. It is very hard to go cold turkey and cut myself off from the big two, but I think I have to push myself to go that way. Of course it is hard because some book from Marvel and DC are interesting such as Hawkeye and Swamp Thing, two series that are normally left alone.