Name: Rick Sand

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    rsand27's Recent Comments
    August 10, 2010 12:41 pm

    Green Arrow is one title I expected to hate 5000X over. As ridiculous as Green Arrow & Black Canary was, and the Fall of Arsenal, and Olliver Queen: Murderer, I had the lowest of the low in terms of expectations for yet another GA reboot. Sure it's only two issues in, but I'm impressed.

    I've been reading Denny O'Neil and Neal Adams' Green Lantern/Green Arrow run from the 70s. I find it to be especially poignant right now, considering its parallels with Superman. GL & GA went traveling across America so that Hal could get reconnected to his home world after working as a space cop for so long. And wow, are those books good. Heroes who care! Hal's eye-opening experiences! Relevant sociopolitical commentary!

    Today in Superman, we have Stracynzski doing a knock-off of that concept that is - thus far - an epic failure. I agree with you. We waited too long to have Superman back on Earth to not get Superman the icon, the leader, the role model. 

    I also agree that Wonder Woman has a long history of mismanagement. I still have faith in this new direction. Did you not enjoy Greg Rucka's run on WW? It was the first and only time I could say WW was my favorite comic book series. 

    June 14, 2010 1:17 pm

    When I was younger my dad built me a shelf system. 6 long boxes on the floor. 6 on each of two shelves above that for a total of 18 long boxes. Atop of that are two bookshelves that hold a few trades along with novels. I'm not very big on trades.These comics are all arranged alphabetically if I own 13+ isues. If I own 12 or less they get filed as "Misc." So Spider-Man minis, one-shots, etc. are filed under "Spider-Man - Misc." Stuff like Demo or Clerks or Watchmen that don't fit any specific miscellaneous category go into boxes designated "Other - Misc" at the end of the alphabet.

    Eventually the shelves filled. Now I have 9 boxes stacked on top each other next to the shelving unit. These are only for complete series, so Shade the Changing Man, Swamp Thing v2/3, Animal Man, etc. Since I don't need to reorganize those boxes to fit new issues, stacking them isn't really a big deal.

    Two more long boxes are on the other side for storing "unsorted" books until I get around to them. These come into play mostly after conventions. I don't buy monthly books at the moment due to cost and wait to get them for $1 or less at conventions. So the lots I'm bringing home are fairly large. And then thres a backup short box in times of emergency!

    June 13, 2010 6:25 pm

    @odino1 - You don't create false numbers by adding one-shots and first issues of limited serise. The reason there are so many one-shots now is because #1 issues sell. The existance of so many one-shots actually prove the author's point.

    I started collecting comics in 1992, right around the time the gimmicks started exploding on the scene: the "breaking of the bat," the "death of Supman," "Hal Jordan: Parallax," X-books "Fatal Attractions" with hologram covers and the removal of Wolverine's Adamantium at the hands of Magneto, "Zero Hour," the "collect coupons from all the Image titles this month to mail away for a copy of Image #0," or Magneto #0 from Marvel, Zero issues in general, trading card inserts. Then you could even get trading card inserts in a new #1 wit X-Force. If you wanted them all you had to buy 5 copies... just for trading cards! The formation of Image comics was almost a gimmick in itself at its inception. We had hologram covers, chromium covers, super-rare platinum covers. I have a copy of Sensational Spider-Man #1 polybagged with a cassette tape of the Ramones theme song for the 1990's Spider-Man cartoon (although that is a great theme song).

    All that is just from the early-mid 90s! But how often did you see one-shots back then? How many Superman one-shots or even mini-series exist before Man of Steel in the mid-80s? How many Batman one-shots/minis before "The Dark Knight Returns"? Even the maxi-seroes was designated to works like Watchmen, Wanderers, and Camelot 3000, none of which were off-shoots of monthly titles. Yes, the Wanderers may have come from Legion of Super-Heroes, but it was certainly far removed enough from the Legion to hardly consider it a Legion book. 

    I don't view returns to legacy numbering as being gimmicky, even if that is the intention. I view them as corrections to previous marketing gimmicks that disrepected the historical integrity of the characters. I can understand some renumbering. Blue Beetle for example was a title that had its shot once and was cancelled. It was rebooted much much later with a new lead character. But changing Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four to #1s is just insulting to the legacy of those characters.

    I realize it's a business and they need to make profit, but the answer to that is better storytelling. Comics existed from the late 1930s until 1985 (Crisis on Infinite Earths) without major events that crossed over to every title they could squeeze in. They did this without reboots. In fact after a period of cancellation in the Golden Age, the Flash continued with Barry Allen in Flash #105 (not #1). X-Men after facing cancellation and becoming a reprint book, formed a new team (granted in the one-shot Giant-Sized X-Men #1), and continued from X-Men 94 onward. When Superboy shifted to feature the Legion of Super-Heroes, Superboy ended on #258 and the Legion began on #259 (after a long period of being titled "Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes" and "Superboy starring the Legion of Super-Heroes").It is true, of course, that the Legion had afour-issue mini-series around this time, though I'm not sure I would call that a gimmick at the time. I'd say it was more of a test to see if they could sell the Legion as something other than an anthology feature.

    Now I'm not saying there is anything wrong with one-shots o rmini-series. Without anthology titles in the modern market, there is really no other way to test public interest. Referring back to that Legion mini-series, sometimes limited tryouts are necessary to test market demand. Sometimes characters are best served in minis rather than full series. Grant Morrison's "Flex Mentallo" for example. Quite a noteworking mini-series, but would that hold the same success as a monthly? I enjoyed a Wonder Girl mini-series a few years ago, but I don't need a Wonder Girl monthly. An occassional limited solo story is great though.

    A problem we see today is reboots and one-shots that aren't fitting this type of mold. This Avengers reboot is a prime example. I love the Avengers ever since I started reading at Avengers Disassembled. I am not sure why this whole new set of cancellations and reboots is necessary for Marvel's top-selling franchise. New Avengers is essentially the exact same thing as it always was. DC did the samething in the Batman books after RIP.

    Which brings us to character deaths. I won't say much here, because it's all been said before, but to tie it into the author's topic of reboots, we saw an entire reboot of the entire Batman line over the "death" of a chararcter, who really was never dead. DC hit us with both the death gimmick and the reboot gimmick at the same time! Even though Detective didn't lose its numbering its main feature was rebooted to feature for the first time in 70 years someone other than Batman. Sure it's a Bat-family character, but 70 years of historical achievement ended for Bruce Wayne in a gimmick. I might sound a bit empassioned about that one, but me and Bruce go way back to when I was twelve-years old in 1992. If DC doesn't have his back, I certainly do. 

    But I digress. I've said enough on the matter. Great article, Jason.