Full disclosure, I’ve been dreading the DC comics relaunch since it was announced. Superman, Green Arrow and Martian Manhunter are three of my favorite mythological characters, and having them rewritten scared me. I know. Change is scary, but necessary. But in this instance, I really didn’t see why change WAS necessary. I just believed better writing was.
The “New 52” as DC is billing it, was supposed to fix continuity errors, and bring new readers to comics. They wanted to sell comics, which is understandable, since that’s the business that DC comics is in. Begrudgingly, I decided to give them a chance. Well, that experiment is over.
You see, the continuity is more screwed up than ever. Forget how they’ve ruined those three favorite characters I already mentioned, turning Green Arrow into a bad WB serial, having Superman throw a man off a building and shouting things like, “GD!” (short for God Damn!) and Martian Manhunter going to a B-movie hero team from another universe. Throughout the new 52 number one issues, they can’t even keep their stories straight.
For instance, in Justice League #1, we see heroes meeting each other for the first time. They’re all fairly new on the scene. It’s implied that Superman, Green Lantern and Batman are all just starting out. This is backed up in the #1 issues of each of those heroes. HOWEVER: In Justice League International #1, not only has the Justice League been around for a while, so much so that domestic terrorists are taking out the Hall of Justice, but it’s referenced that Superman, Wonderwoman, Green Lantern and Batman were all legendary members. This is only backed up in Storm Watch #1, when it’s mentioned that Martian Manhunter was an old school Justice Leaguer along with those heroes.
In Superman #1, we learn that Superman barely knows Lois Lane and Perry White, because he works at a competing paper. But in Animal Man #1, we see them all working together in several panels. In Swamp Thing #1, it’s further shown that Superman has the legend we’ve known him to have prior to the reboot, yet the Superman books themselves post-reboot, are trying to change that.
In short, DC is more inconsistent than ever. And every #1 I read from the new 52 left me praying it was all a practical joke.
Just like our struggling auto industry, our comics industry has to stop trying to reinvent the wheel. They just have to make a really sweet ride. The new 52 is the Ford Pinto of sweet rides.