The DCU Reboot - The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly


jla_cv11 I have been reading DC comics for about 17 years now, and back when I was a teenager, I was all about the DC, and really hated Marvel. Then over the years, I started getting into the X-Men, and through them I got into Marvel proper. These days, I would say that I like the each company’s books equally, and would say that I buy a fair amount of DC’s current output. So now that the 52 titles of DC’s grand reboot have been announced (see here for a handy guide), I thought that it might be interesting to look at what is coming out, list my initial thoughts on the titles, and see how much my pull-list is likely to change.

OK, so I currently buy 28 DC titles, including:

Action Comics, All-Star Batman & Robin (hah!), Batman: The Dark Knight, Batman: Gates of Gotham, Batman, Inc., Batman: Streets of Gotham, Batman & Robin, Batwoman, Birds of Prey, Brightest Day Aftermath: The Search for Swamp Thing, Booster Gold, Detective Comics, The Flash, Flashpoint, Flashpoint: Batman - Knight of Vengeance, Flashpoint: Secret Seven, Flashpoint: Frankenstein Creatures of The Unknown, Flashpoint: Wonder Woman and the Furies, Flashpoint: Lois Lane and the Resistance, Flashpoint: Project Superman, Green Lantern, Green Lantern Corps, Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors, Secret Six, The Spirit, Superboy, T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents, and Xombi

Let’s look at what they announced…

Things That I will Definitely Pick Up!

Action Comics #1 - It’s Superman, written by Grant Morrison. Have you read All-Star Superman? ‘Nuff said!

All-Star Western #1 - Palmiotti & Grey write a fantastic Jonah Hex. I can’t remember reading one issue that was less than excellent. With this new series, they are integrating Hex into the DCU proper, which should be awesome. Also, it has art by Moritat, who has been blowing my mind on The Spirit and Elephantmen!

Animal Man #1 - I love Animal Man. I have ever since Morrison’s classic run. He’s had a few good series over the years, and a few not so good ones. With Jeff Lemire at the helm, this one is guaranteed to fall into the former category.

Batman #1 - Scott Snyder’s current work on Detective Comics and Gates of Gotham is astonishingly good. In fact, he’s probably my second favourite Batman writer of the last decade (GM is #1).

Batgirl #1 - Batgirl isn’t normally a title that I would pick up, but Gail Simone kicks all kinds of ass, so this is a must have for me!

Birds of Prey #1 - Duane Swierczynski writes crime and espionage comics brilliantly, he’s right up there with Rucka and Brubaker. I really look forward to seeing his take on the team. Though what’s all this about Oracle being able to walk again? I’m not sure that I’m 100% happy with that.

Demon Knights #1 - The Demon rules! As does Paul Cornell. Put the two together, and you’ve got something special!

Frankenstein: Agent of Shade #1 - I love Jeff Lemire’s Flashpoint: Frankenstein, and I loved Morrison’s version from Seven Soldiers, so this is definitely a “must” for me!

Green Lantern #1 - It’s Geoff Johns on Green Lantern, of course I’m going to buy it. Even if you don’t like Johns’ writing, you have to admit that his GL kicks ass! One thing though, it would have worked much better for them to have GL #1 out in June, what with the new movie coming out!

Grifter #1 - Grifter is a great character, and Nathan Edmondson has really been proving his writing skills over a Image Comics.

Justice League #1 - Finally, James Robinson is off the Justice League! Geoff Johns and Jim Lee! You couldn’t ask for a higher profile creative team, and that’s how it should be for a titles of this caliber!

Justice League Dark #1 - Constatine, Shade, Deadman, Madame Xanadu - all on the same team, and it’s written by Peter Milligan! I can’t wait!

Red Lanterns #1 - The Red Lanterns become the first light corps to get their own spin-off. Sounds good. Hopefully Milligan is going to make this one nice and dark!

Resurrection Man #1 Hah! DnA back on Resurrection Man! This is just too good to be true! Seriously!

Stormwatch #1 - OK, this looks interesting. It seems taking The Authority back to the days when they were all in Stormwatch. Hey, is that Martian Manhunter on the cover?! Hmm…

Superman: the Man of Tomorrow #1 - I love George Pérez, but I have to say that it seems an odd choice of writer for a fresh new universe, being that Pérez is more associated with DC titles of the 70s and 90s, not to mention the fact that he’s primarily know as an artist. Oh well!

Swamp Thing #1 - Swamp Thing is back in the DCU, and they’ve given him to Scott Snyder, who is one of the grittiest writers working at DC right now. I look forward to this!

Wonder Woman #1 - Brian Azzarello on Wonder Woman - excellent! Hopefully he’ll take the title back to the feel that Greg Rucka had going on at the end of his run!

Things I will probably Pick up

Aquaman #1 - OK, I’m going to give Geoff Johns a chance here, because he did a hell of a job bringing Green Lantern back to the forefront of the DCU, and a decent job on The Flash. I have to admit though, Aquaman is a little bit lame, so he’s definitely got his work cut out for him!

Batman & Robin #1 - Tomasi has been telling some pretty good B&R tales, but they really need to stop shuffling around the creative teams. The titles has really lost its way since Morrison left, with revolving creative teams telling short filler arcs. If they keep they same team going, with a good ongoing plot, I’m in!

Batman: The Dark Knight #1 - David Finch is a great artist, but a pretty average writer. I’m going to keep reading, in the hopes that he finds his feet.

Batwoman #1 - I loved Rucka’s Batwoman, so I’m going to give this new series a go. I like Amy Reeder’s artwork, but I really wish J.H. Williams III was drawing the book. What is it with DC and giving big writing gigs to artists who have never written anything before?!

Blackhawks #1 - I’m going to give this a go. A modern take on Blackhawks sounds like it could be interesting, but it could really go either way.

DC Universe Presents #1 - This series has definite potential, but I’m going to reserve judgement until they’ve got a couple of arc under their belt. What they have planned isn’t really an anthology, it’s more like a collection of mini-series all sold under one title, which seems like an odd approach.

Detective Comics #1 - Again, Tony Daniel is a great artist, but a pretty average writer. I’ve tried his Batman run a couple of times, and wasn’t entirely sold on it. However, I’m going to give him only last chance here, and he better bowl me over!

The Fury of Firestorm #1 - I’ve always thought that Firestorm was a bit “meh”, but this one is co-written by Gail Simone, so it could well be good. Oh look, another artist turned writer!

Green Lantern Corps #1 - I’ll probably pick this up, but it’s not a “must” for me. I’ll likely see what each arc is about, and whether the story seems interesting to me, before deciding whether to get it on not.

Green Lantern: The New Guardians #1 - Ditto the above.

Justice League International #1 - This could be fun, as long as they keep Jurgens in the writing position, or maybe bring Giffen back. I’m just hesitant, because they had Winick on Generation Lost, which I was not happy with at all.

Legion of Superheroes #1 - I used to love the Legion, and I really want to love it again. I have to admit though that I dropped Levitz’s recent run on the title because it was just too boring. I’ve just had enough of the characters, it needs an injection of fresh and interesting characters. Hopefully this reboot will kicking things back into gear, so I’ll give it another try.

OMAC #1 - This series has potential. I like the Kirby character, then Rucka brought it back for The OMAC Project, and it seems like DC haven’t quite known what to do with it ever since. I’ll see what direction they go with this first issue, and decide from there.

Voodoo #1 - It’s been a while since Ron Marz has done anything in the DCU, with most of his recent work being at Top Cow. This new one looks pretty interesting, and I look forward to checking it out.

Things that I Probably Will Not pick-Up

Blue Beetle #1 - I’m kinda bored of the character now. I loved the last series, by Rogers & Giffen, but I think I might give this one a miss.

Captain Atom #1 - Hmm, I’m not sure about this one. Captain Atom has just been screwed with too much, and I’ve read too many cancelled series to give DC the benefit of the doubt on this one.

Deathstroke #1 - I’m just bored on the character, it’s been done to death, much like Deadpool, Marvel’s character which is based on him.

The Flash #1 - I’ve just read too many Flash #1s in the last couple of years, and I just can’t take any more! Also, another artist stuck in a top writing role…

Green Arrow #1 - I used to love Green Arrow, back when he used to hang out with Green Lantern. I even loved Kevin Smith’s reboot. I think that Winick’s run on the book might have killed it for me though. I tried picking up Krull’s last run on the series, but it just wasn’t my cup of tea.

Hawk & Dove #1 - I’ve never really been a fan of the characters. Also, Rob Liefeld on art chores? No thanks!

I, Vampire #1 - Just so very bored of Vampires, in any shape or form!

Legion Lost #1 - This sounds like it might have potential, but two Legion titles a month is too much for me!

Mister Terrific #1 - What the hell have they done to Mister Terrific? He now looks like… well, I don’t know what! I love the character, and even have an action figure, but this looks lame. I’ll reconsider if I hear good things about the plot.

Nightwing #1 - I’ve just never been into Nightwaing, what can I say?!

The Savage Hawkman #1 - Again, I’ve just never been into this character.

Sgt Rock & the Man of War #1 - The grandson of the original Sgt Rock? That’s pretty corny! Also, I find that war never works well in worlds where men fly through the sky, and shoot lasers out of their eyes.

Static Shock #1 - Again, I’ve just never been into this character.

Suicide Squad #1 - Again, I’ve just never been into these characters.

Superboy #1 - They took Jeff Lemire off Superboy! what were they thinking?

Supergirl #1 - Again, I’ve just never been into this character.

Teen Titans #1- Again, I’ve just never been into these character.

No Way Jose

Batwing #1 - Judd Winick is my Krypotonite. That is all.

Catwoman #1 - ditto.

Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 - I hate the Red Hood so damn much. He even sucked when Morrison wrote him for that arc of Batman & Robin. He’s just such a whinger!.

To Tally Up

So, out of the 52 titles announced, that’s 18 definites, 14 maybes, 17 maybe nots, and 3 definitely nots. So it looks like, all in all, I’ll probably end up buying around that same amount of titles after the reboot as I did before the reboot. That’s good to know. I’m not entirely sold on all of the new titles, but being a 32 year old man, I don’t think I’m really the demographic here. However, I’m really not even sure how interesting characters like Hawk & Dove will be to 16 and 17 year olds, so who knows what audience they are targeting here!

So, any thoughts on these? what do you think looks good?

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