So I guess this is happening now. While it doesn’t inspire fits of nerd rage in me it does bring about a slight groan. After all a Superman and Wonder Woman romance is so…bland. What exactly does an Amazon and farm boy from Kansas have in common? It’s just so uninspired. So they reboot the DCU to come up with new and exciting stories and possibilities and this is what they come up with? This is it? Wonder Woman and Superman getting it on?
Evidently, according to Geoff Johns this will be the new status quo for now. So this is something they plan on sticking with. On one hand, it really speaks to comic book writers complete inability to write interesting material for female characters. With Superman’s character, its just a dull and predictable romance. From the point of view of Wonder Woman’s character, it does nothing. It adds nothing to Wonder Woman at all and adds very little to Superman. It’s not bad, it’s just typical comic book writing.
This last Sunday night, all of America lost its collective mind to the ending Breaking Bad. It was an event we all knew was coming, we had been waiting five seasons for it to happen. But the awesome thing about Breaking Bad is all the new and inventive ways that they deal with the inevitable, so its always a shock. The hammer always falls when it is least expected, often in a subtle and understated fashion.
Shows like The Shield, Mad Men, The Wire and Breaking Bad have driven television drama forward. Game of Thrones and those mentioned previously have redefined what is quality television drastically, each in their own way. After Hank’s shit heard around the world, the bar has been raised to how serialized drama handles and structures its twists and turns. Breaking Bad has its foot on the peddle, shattering our expectations of good TV at a break neck speed.
Comic books are stuck in neutral. They just keep coming up with cheap gimmicks and dull twists instead of focusing on storytelling and structure. I understand the entire point is to sell comics, and the best way to do that is to keep people talking and keep a buzz going. Breaking Bad does get people talking and keeps it buzz going with moments like Gustav Fring’s demise. However, Fring’s demise was a slow build as the adversarial relationship between him and Walter White was constructed brick by brick. It was a careful setup, one that took time. That is one of things I like about Geoff Johns’ writing, he’s not afraid to start slow and build to the big set pieces.
I think the problem is that Marvel and DC are run by the editors. Well, it’s more likely that Marvel is run by the marketing department but DC is defiantly all editors. The editors were responsible for Countdown to Final Crisis, one of the worst cross over series that DC had ever done. For Christ’s sake, there is a panel showing Darkseid sitting on Mary Marvel’s couch. It completely destroys his other worldly mystique and menace. They should have just given him some fucking potato chips and soda while they were at it.
Comic books should be the hottest medium right now. Superheroes, even B-level heroes, are at the highest visibility then they ever have been with all the mega-budget superhero blockbusters Hollywood is putting out now. Digital reading devices like the Kindle and Ipad are making it easier than ever for people to buy and read comics. Geek culture has completely taken over mainstream culture and is big business. Marvel and DC should be bringing in the cash with dump trucks. But they’re not. They are doing okay but not great. They are not reaching their full potential.
Why is that? Simple. There are better entertainment choices just about everywhere else. AMC is offering us two of the most compelling shows on television today. Hollywood gives us massive, big budget spectacles and shit blowing up. Video games are giving us more and more personal experiences. Reading is more popular now than it was forty or thirty years ago. Why do comic books feel so old and tired? Breaking Bad gave us Mike Ehrmantraut and a slow descent into a suburban Hell. DC comics is giving us Superman and Wonder Woman fucking. If it comes down to a choice between some Justice League comics or a season of Breaking Bad on Blu-Ray, I’m putting my money on Breaking Bad. It’s a much more rewarding investment of my time and money.
My big problem with the idea of Wonder Woman in a relationship with Superman is that it does nothing for her character. And honestly they picked they least interesting choice they possibly could. Superman is the safe pick, the white bread, the vanilla choice. I wouldn’t go with Batman either as that is just another obvious one. If you want Wonder Woman to spread her wonder legs for a superhero, pick a B-level one who could use the bump up the card.
Isn’t this particularly sad about comics in general? That most of their female characters’ defining trait is their vagina and who is currently occupying it? In the previous DCU, Wonder Woman’s big development that redefined her character for years was when she decided to kill Max Lord. In the New 52, her biggest character defining moment thus far has been when she decided to drop to her knees for the Man of Steel. She was a lot more interesting before the reboot. Come to think of it, most of DC’s characters were. With each month, I care less and less about DC. I could already couldn’t give less of a shit about Marvel.
I really wanted this reboot to work, but it was only a half-reboot. As Mike Ehrmantraut would advise: no more half measures, from now on only full ones.
Green Arrow’s new look is fucking horrendous. Can we bring back the Robin Hood look please?