Friday means many things to many people. For some, Friday is all about the start of days of home repair. For others, lots of aimless wandering. For others still, let the mf’er burn.
At iFanboy, Friday means it’s letter column time.
You write. We answer. Very simple.
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Just a quick question. After seeing Chris Claremont’s work on X-Men Forever, I was wondering if there are any other writers who left a book that you would be interested to see return to a character they spent a long time working on. This could either be in the “pick up where I left off” style of X-Men Forever, or just a standard return to writing duties. It seems that some writers still have ideas left before they leave a title for whatever reason, and I was wondering who, if anyone, would pique your interests.
That’s the dilemma, right? We all have fond memories of our favorite confluence of character(s) and creators(s) and in many ways we are constantly chasing that high, trying to replicate that good feeling that Claremont and Byrne gave us when they were on Uncanny X-Men (if we were Ron). Sometimes we get our wish and Giffen, DeMatteis and Maguire are dragged back to do the Justice League, one more time. Or Mark Waid comes back to try to save Wally West before he disappears into the ether of comic book history. But that’s not always a good thing. Sometimes too much time has passed and styles have changed. Or sometimes the magic just isn’t there anymore between creator and character. And how depressing is that when that happens?
It’s risky, is what I’m saying.
So who would I like to see come back to write more stories with the characters that they previously worked on?
Just yesterday I was talking with some people about how Grant Morrison’s JLA was way more important than it gets credit for, and it gets a lot, for bringing people back to comics. Morrison’s shadow has loomed large over that book for almost 15 years now and it hasn’t really been very good in that time frame. Theoretically, I would love to see how Morrison would handle the Justice League again. But then I think about it for more than a few minutes and I think that it would probably end up being very different than what I would want it to be.
I would love to see Greg Rucka or Ed Brubaker return to Gotham City. I would love for them to bring Chuck Dixon along with them. I would love to see Mark Waid get another shot at Captain America and bring that magic with him that he’s currently sprinkling on Daredevil.
But mostly I just want to recapture the magic I felt when I first read those great runs by those great creators. And that’s probably impossible. But I’ll keep trying.
Actually, now that I think about it, I am reading one book that features the classic creator having returned to the property that he is best known for and picking the story up from where he left off. And that book is G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, and that creator is writer Larry Hama. We never talk about that book, but it’s a lot of fun.
Lately I’ve started getting a feeling I have not had for a long time. In fact the last time I think I had it was in 1993 and within a year I was completely out of comics. I would not read a superhero comic again until 2001 with Grant Morrison’s New X-Men. I do know I am done with these unimaginative ultra-realistic comics that are saturating the market. What’s wrong with big abstract fun ideas that are fresh & different? After reading Morrison’s Supergods I feel we need a new age & direction for the superhero. It’s time for the psychedelic fun of the 70′s & 80′s to make a revival. Superheroes & their creators need to tune in, turn on, & come up with new stories & new ways to tell them. Instead of trying to find the next Alan Moore to save comics we should be trying to find the next Grant Morrison. Or maybe I’m just crazy. What do you guys think? Thanks for reading this rant.
Andy from Cincinnati
Where to begin, Andy?
First, I shall relate. I know the feeling. I have experienced the feeling. The feeling is not a good one. That creeping disinterest can make you feel like you’re wasting your time and money. It can drive you from the comic shops, and throw down your Fear Itself issues in (more) anger. Why, you could just start renting DVDs or reading prose novels, for goodness sake.
This happens. This ebbs and flows. Sometimes mainstream comics will be in an upswing, and sometimes they’ll be flailing, and trying to catch a flame they just can’t. Right now, there’s a bit of flailing, I would say. That doesn’t mean there aren’t good comics. We have no idea what sort of comics are going to come out of DC in a matter of weeks.
Why must it be superhero comics? If you’re aching for change and for something new, then go. try. something. new.
Between Image, Dark Horse, IDW, BOOM!, Oni, Fantagraphics, Top Shelf, and countless other publishers, there are so many comics, and kinds of comics. You want that big crazy imagination and fun? Chew from Image is one of the best things out there. No, it’s not superheroes, but why oh God why do people fixate on one genre in comics? I wouldn’t watch only police procedural TV shows, or only romantic comedies at the movies. I get that the most talented folks in comics tend to work at Marvel and DC because that’s the only place they can make a living, but man, there is so much out there it’s absurd. And most of them sell for shit. Other comics is how I recharge my batteries. If it wasn’t for DC’s Vertigo comics imprint, I wouldn’t be here right now. You’re not going to like everything, but if you’ve had enough of how things are being done, stop looking in the same damn place.
Make the comics market how you want it to be. Don’t buy stuff you don’t like, and by all means, sample the wares.