So I don’t even know why I do this to myself.

§ December 19th, 2011 § Filed under blogging about blogging is a sin, publishing, reader participation, superman § 4 Comments

I suppose I should probably get around to discussing your responses to my inquiry about how folks feel regarding DC’s New 52 initiative. …Especially since, thanks to Jim, we’re up to 52 comments! Coincidence? …Nah.

I’m probably going to go through over the next day or so and respond more thoroughly to specific comments, but the first thing that I noticed was that a few people are not entirely thrilled with Action Comics thus far, citing plot or art concerns. And, I can understand that….

A PROGRESSIVE RUIN ACTION ALERT! Okay, I just deleted several rambling paragraphs about changes to the Superman franchise and how this new status quo may be interfering with Morrison’s storytelling, or at least reader interaction with same, and blah blah blah you can read what I already wrote about some of my disconnect with this New 52 Superman here. In essence, I think Morrison may have been better served picking up from where the previous Superman creative teams left off, and just telling crazy new stories with the franchise’s toys (like he did with his New X-Men run) without having to deal with these editorially-mandated alterations. Of course, “Superman’s New Costumes!” gets more real world media attention than “Mad Scottish Writer Takes Over Superman, Vows Revenge” so that probably wasn’t going to happen.

Anyway, a lot of what I wrote felt awfully dismissive of people’s reactions to the actual plotting and pacing of the stories, which I totally wasn’t intending to do, so out all that went. I do think there’d be less of a disconnect if it were stories about the Superman we knew and not the post-Flashpoint version, but that wouldn’t necessarily address any storytelling concerns folks might have. I mean, I like Morrison’s Action quite a bit, and it’s selling very well for us, but I can see where people might not be so into it. “‘Your mileage may vary,’ he clichéd.”

I do admit that I’m not sure I like how Jimmy Olsen is being drawn in Action. I prefer the “Representational Archie Andrews” version of the character.

Urgh. My struggling over even that bit of incoherent weblogging took up all my ProgRuin time tonight, and then some, so I’ll get to your specific comments and such tomorrow. Especially those terrible, terrible things being said about Swamp Thing.

…Yes, today’s post was bit of a carwreck. Please enjoy its flaming glory, and I’ll see you tomorrow.

4 Responses to “So I don’t even know why I do this to myself.”

  • Roger Green says:

    You go to a blogger who blogs every day, sometimes you get a car wreck. You gets whatcha pays for. (And I’m speaking of my own blog too.)

  • Prankster says:

    I think it’s true of Morrison just as much as it is everyone else: a total continuity wipe limits the options for storytelling. A new Superman writer won’t be able to tell stories using, I don’t know, Mr. Mxyzptlk or Krypto the Super-Dog without reintroducing them. I realize the goal of the New 52 is to try and reach new readers, but as I’ve said over and over again, it wasn’t the backstory that was making comics inaccessible; people have been picking up comics in the middle of their runs for decades, and managing to follow them. It’s the incomprehensible storytelling that’s the problem. Comics used to have a nice, neat system that played to the medium–assuming someone just picked up the comic without reading prior issues, there’d be caption boxes to fill people in on the events to date, there’d be recaps, or at the very least the story would be told in such a way that the reader could fill in the blanks him or herself.

    But now that comics want to be movies, with decompressed six-issue arcs full of “widescreen” moments but less actual storytelling, there’s little attempt to do any of this stuff properly, and the result is comics that would be confusing and off-putting to new readers even as of the fourth issue. Having cleared the continuity decks contributes nothing.

    If you don’t believe me, try getting someone who doesn’t read comics to read “All Star-Superman” vs. Action Comics or one of the other new 52 books. A-SS draws heavily on (partly imagined) past continuity, which is how I think all superhero comics should do it, but it’s perfectly accessible and readable to all.

  • caleb says:

    Hey, how come Swamp Thing didn’t get a redesigned costume like everyone else…?

  • Carl says:

    I also enjoy Action but also understand why some of your commenters don’t like it, and while I think some of the negative online reaction is part of the Morrison backlash, I didn’t even see much evidence of that on your blog (of course, why would people sick who are of Morrison pick it up in the first place?) But it’s actually for that reason that I wish you had gone ahead with your post! I think your readership trusts you enough to know you’re not sneering at them; in fact, you’re probably one of the least sneer-y (sorry, Whedonism) comics bloggers out there (pretty great that you can run a series called “The End of Civilization” and still qualify for this, right?).

    That said, it sounds like at this point it would be best for you to move on, considering the amount of frustration this piece already caused you. Anyway, probably going back to lurking now, but keep up the good work!