Random Thoughts! (April 21, 2009)

After the... let's call it, healthy debate last week's random thoughts caused, I hope this week's edition can prove just as popular. It's random thought time! Get excited!

Random Thought! Young Liars being cancelled sucks, but is not surprising. My advice to those who love the book: enjoy the final four issues and be thankful that we'll all have 18 issues of high quality comics that we can reread.

Random Thought! I've been wondering lately if it's possible for people to move beyond their childhoods. Barry Allen and Hal Jordan return because some people can't get past their childhoods. Honestly, I don't think I enjoyed All-Star Superman that much, because Morrison's conception of the character is divorced from the one I know from growing up with the character. It's a joke that in ten years (probably less), we'll have creators nostalgic for the Spider-Clone Saga and other "gems" from the '90s... but isn't that a very real possibility?

Random Thought! Joe Casey making Superman a pacifist in his final year on Adventures of Superman was the most forward-thinking thing done with the character in god knows how long and was a challenge to every single writer who followed him. A challenge that every single one failed. It was such a genius (and logical) move that I cringe at seeing Superman use violence now. It seems brutish and archaic for the character.

Random Thought! Oh, and while I'm thinking about it, Lex Luthor as president was another wasted opportunity. It was another brilliant move where Luthor beat Superman in a way that no other villain would ever think to. And it just eventually devolved into typical supervillain nonsense until he put back on that moronic green and purple armour. Really, the guy goes from president to that?

Random Thought! I don't understand Marvel's approach to the political system in their comics. Somehow, their America is a world that consistently elects the same world leaders as we do here in the real world despite there being vast, VAST differences in the two societies and histories (plus the various fictious nations in the MU), but, somehow, one of their characters is elected mayor of New York? That bothers me for some reason.

Random Thought! I notice that I'm being rather negative. So, let me state, for the record, that I'm looking forward to Wednesday Comics quite a bit. It looks like a wonderful project.

Random Thought! Last week, the final issue of Wildstorm's X-Files mini-series came out. I bought the book for my girlfriend as she's a big fan of the show and reviewed each issue for CBR, because... well, I could. The book was a decent enough read, nothing spectacular, but pretty solid. A couple of things worth mentioning: it was divided into three two-issue stories, each by a different writer, but all drawn by the same artist, Brian Denham. That format is a really, really good idea for a project like this. There's no padding out a single story for six issues and gives some variety while keeping things consistent through the art. The other thing is that, in the final issue, Denham deviated from the style he used for the rest of the series for a few panels, depicting two flashbacks in a very sketchy, unrealistic style, and, for a licensed book, that's a bold choice. It's also a choice that demonstrates something that comics can do that TV and film really can't... it's nice to see a comic play to its strengths (albeit briefly) rather than simply try to be the TV show on paper.

Random Thought! Huh. Captain America is having three double-sized (or larger) issues in a row with issues 50, 600, and 601. That seems odd somehow.

Random Thought! One of my pet peeves is when someone says something critical of comics and everyone else responds with "You need to be positive! Your negativity is hurting comics! Stop it! You should focus on the good!" Yeah, well, focusing on the good is a nice way to live, don't get me wrong, but if you don't point out the awful crap, it will continue. The only way to grow and get better is through honest criticism. And if you really wanted to "help comics" (whatever that means), you'd do everything in your power to weed out the crap. Then again, I've always been the sort of person who is much harder of the things I support and like than the crap I have no time for. In politics, for example, I'm much more likely to jump on a mistake by the party I support than to try to justify it. If you've got my support, then everything you do is a reflection on me, and you're damn right I'm going to shout when you mess up. Same thing with comics. If, as a comic fan, I'm expected to champion the good, to praise the medium for all its wonders (which I do without hesitation for the same reason I praise awesome books, movies, and music), then, yeah, I'm going to point out every piece of bullshit there is, because it reflects poorly on comics in general. (And now I've opened the door for everyone to tell me how much I suck and how I reflect poorly on comics, haven't I?)

And, actually, that seems like a good thought to end things on.

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