Friday, January 23, 2009

Entertainment Addendum: Comics Apocalypse

I planned to stop reading comics before but was surprised to find them getting closer to the finale I always imagined and wanted to see — which was basically an unlikely but hoped-for simultaneous “ending” (I mean, at least semi-permanently) to the stories of the Multiverse, New Gods, Time Trapper, Krona, and maybe Gog to boot, and with Gog recently stuck onto the Source Wall — and Krona and Trapper slated for mind-bogglingly massive final battles in the next couple months — you might actually believe me if I say this new quote from DC Comics Exec. Editor Dan Didio makes it easier to walk away smiling and satisfied at last:

DD: You’re going to see a couple of things being “rested” after Final Crisis — the Multiverse is something that we’ve really used, and maybe overused over the last year. So now we can pull it back and bring it back slowly. It’s out there and available to us, but just because it’s out there and available doesn’t mean that we have to run to it immediately following this story.

The other thing we’ll give a rest to as well is the concept of the New Gods and the ideas surrounding them. There’s a very clear conclusion to the New Gods’ storyline in Final Crisis #7. The good part about it is that readers will see that ending, and we won’t have to return to it right away. Like the Multiverse, the New Gods will be out there and available to us, and we can use them when we see fit, and feel the time is right. Just because we introduced concepts doesn’t mean that we have to constantly use them. That’s one of the mistakes that we’ve made before, and hopefully learned from, and won’t have to make again.

One irony of this, which I’ve mentioned to DC editor Scott Nybakken before, is that even though Grant Morrison, the writer responsible for the two endings Didio mentions above, is supposed to be the “revamp/update/relaunch” guy, he keeps being the “closure” guy (which is fine with me but perhaps should trouble DC) for the simple reason that when he “relaunches” characters, he actually has a tendency to render them so strange and complicated that no other writer or editor is likely to want to touch them (and even some of his most eager readers aren’t quite sure what the hell just happened).  But that works out well for me, you see. Burn it all down, once and for all!  Revolution in my lifetime!  (Or better yet, happy endings all around.  Even net long-term decreases in happiness for fictional characters bother me a little, I must admit.)


Mark said...

I love the Multiverse, but have always felt indifferent to the New Gods. I think, in hindsight, that Crisis on Infinite Earths was a huge mistake – DC is all too eager to jettison their silver age legacy, when some of the best stuff they’ve ever published by Moore, Meltzer, and Morrison, Johns et al uses it as a starting point.

Todd Seavey said...

In just over a month, our March 4 Debate at Lolita Bar may well address a topic closely related to that complaint — and pit two comics editors against each other. But more on that closer to the date. Up tomorrow: a “multiverse” of political paradigms!

Jacob T. Levy said...

“DC is all too eager to jettison their silver age legacy, when some of the best stuff they’ve ever published by Moore, Meltzer, and Morrison, Johns et al uses it as a starting point. ”

Eh. At this point, DC is all Silver (really Bronze, but they pretend it’s Silver) Age All The Time. Barry, Hall, Ollie, Kara,the Levitz Legion, Kandor, Diana Prince, Earth-2– it’s gone from interesting and nostalgic to a little weird and creepy (cf Identity Crisis) to boring in its own right, and annoying to those of us who thought the 20 years after Crisis had some good comics in them.

Todd Seavey said...

You know, I recently said that now’s the time to do _Crisis on Multiple Earths_ Vol. 5 because the next batch in that series of multiversal JLA/JSA team-up reprints would logically be the one featuring the 1980 Perez team-up that had the two teams meet up with the New Gods. Well, I may be wrong, but I think I notice online evidence that it was actually scheduled for April 2007 (slightly _before_ all the recent multiverse/New Gods usage started) but was yanked before publication. They should have just delayed until…NOW! It was a great story — and more relevant than ever.

Instead, its almost-ness cyber-haunts me, like the taunting ping of a Mother-Box from a parallel world.