Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Random Comic Book Musings


Supergirl’s big CW debut was this past Monday night and it sure was something… I didn’t get to see. OK, it’s on my DVR and hopefully the family and I will have a chance to sit down by this weekend to see how our favorite Girl of Steel is faring on her new network home. I’m really anxious to see the show’s take on Superman/Clark Kent. 

 

OK, it’s Wednesday which is comic book day here on the ol’ blog thing. What else in the world of comics can we talk about?

 

The forthcoming Doctor Strange movie is looking decidedly trippy and I’m glad to see that. If you can’t upend the normal expectations of a Marvel film about the Sorcerer Supreme, where can you? It’s important for Marvel to explore new tones while building on what has successfully gotten them where they are. Last year’s Ant Man was a good example of taking the template for a Marvel super hero movie and effectively merging it with other established movie concepts such as the comedy crime caper or the corporate espionage thriller. Doctor Strange is decidedly pushing on the parameters of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with its strong Inception-like vibe.

 

Going forward, could Marvel incorporate its characters into other movie genres? What about an all out comedic farce with the Great Lakes Avengers or Damage Control? Or a romantic comedy with Patsy Walker AKA Hellcat? Or a western, dusting off Kid Colt, Two Gun Kid or Rawhide Kid?

 

While things are looking good for Marvel in the movie world, DC has been ruling the roost on television. Well, they have been. The 3rd season premiere of The Flash and the 5th season premiere of Arrow both posted numbers down from their premieres last year. I hope the bloom isn’t already coming off the CW’s super hero rose just as Supergirl joins the line up.

 

Where DC is definitely trouncing Marvel of late is in the world of comic books. Yes, they still print those! And DC’s Rebirth initiative seems to have caught in a way that the New 52 reboot in 2011 did not. The return of legacy to DC’s stable of characters has made a serious impact across the spectrum of new and old fans. But as well as DC is doing, part of their success is coming from Marvel’s lack of success. I think the roll out of the All New All Different Marvel in the aftermath of 2015’s Secret Wars didn’t make the splash Marvel may have been hoping for. Relaunching titles with new #1s which had just debuted with a #1 less than a year ago. An uncertainty about exactly what was the status of the new Marvel. It’s new and different… except when it isn’t. Then Marvel doubled down with its Civil War II which has landed with significantly less impact than the original series a decade ago.

 

I am very interested in Marvel’s The Vision series written by Tom King who is currently writing Batman for DC. One reviewer described the series as “Marvel’s own Watchmen”, a dense and emotionally compelling story. If Marvel collects in a single volume, I may have to get it. Assuming Marvel doesn’t overprice it.

 

That’s something that still irks me about Marvel, that all its titles across the board are $3.99 an issue for a basic 20 page story. Most of DC’s line is holding at $2.99 with $3.99 titles sporting a few extra pages of story. Over at Image, the creator owned titles there range from $2.99 to $3.50 to $3.99 with significantly more content than any Marvel or DC title. If DC and Image can provide titles at $2.99 or additional content for higher priced titles, Marvel could too.

 

OK, that’s enough for today. Thanks for dropping by. Hopefully I will have some thoughts to share about Supergirl on the CW. Meanwhile, tomorrow’s post returns us to the weird world of… Stranger Things.

 

Until next time, remember to be good to one another. 

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