Monday, February 24, 2014

DC All Access Print Version

I sometimes have to laugh at DC's publicity people and how at times they don't seem to have read the very books they are promoting.

So the back page of this week's DC Comics is the print version of DC Comics All Access. And it is promoting Supergirl. That is usual a happy event for me, showing that the company is trying to bring attention to the character.

But this is promoting the angry Supergirl. And it starts with the tantalizing line 'Did Supergirl just kill Lobo???'

Is Supergirl a murderer?? Not exactly the best tagline for a teen hero.

But let's move on. Because that didn't bother me.

This did ...

Why would anyone who has been reading this book think it would be a hoax for Supergirl to be a Red Lantern? Doesn't it seem completely consistent with the book and how DC has been marketing here?

Fighting and rejecting Superman.

Crushing the world.

Trying to kill H'El?

Selfishly happy that the universe is unraveling around her in Krypton Returns.

She hasn't been acting like someone where it would be ludicrous for the Reds to recruit her.

A better line would have been:

"This is no hoax, people - Kara accepts Earth, reconciles with Superman, and becomes a hero!"

Because that is more unbelievable given the 28 issues before.

So why would they write that?

Because people think of Supergirl as a young optimistic hero trying to help and occasionally failing but always learning.

It doesn't matter that for 2+ years she has been this bitter, angry, sad, isolated person. For many it would be a hoax for Supergirl become a Red. Because no one wants Supergirl to be a Red ... even if DC wants to shove it down our throats.

I have said it before and I will repeat it.

Supergirl fans don't want to see her dark. 

And fans of dark characters don't want to read Supergirl. 

That's why these takes always fail ... ALWAYS. That's why they feel like hoaxes. That's why it is wrong.

I mean, the Red Lantern story is here and happening. And maybe it is appropriate because that promo piece enraged me. Because it is ignoring what DC has done to this character since the New 52, trying to make it seem like this step to become a Red Lantern is a big one, and odd, and out of character ... when really, for the most part, she has been an acolyte in waiting.

I'll continue to hope that Tony Bedard means it when he says he is using this to reset things. 

That better not be a hoax!


Martin Gray said...

Brilliant sir, you are so right.

Anonymous said...

I think DC tries to play it both ways. They want to bank off of the history of the characters while disrespecting them at the same time. They know people have a certain vision of Kara and they exploit it when it suits them. I find it to be the lowest common denominator form of marketing. - Shades

AndNowInStereo said...

They're either trying to market Supergirl to the kind of comic book fans who wouldn't hesitate to call her 'Kara Bore-El', or they're just being stupid.

My feeling is a little of column A, a little of column B.

Dave Mullen said...

I just read Justice League #28 and was extremely impressed by a very human story with the sort of sympathetic and likable character Geoff Johns gave us in Aquaman and his Justice Society work. I felt this was possibly my 'Book od the Month' as it was a likable read with characters who felt like human beings - all of this though is a world away from what Johns is doing in Forever Evil and in general his New 52 work.
This though made me think, or rather wonder. I have criticised the apparent decline of Johns' work in general over the last two or three years, his increasing preference for negativity and despair has been depressing to watch unfold as I know he is capable of very fine stuff, of delivering uplifting characters and believable fully rounded individuals.
But I've been blaming HIM for this, thinking that his heavy workload has burnt him out, and yet on the other hand his Aquaman is completely at odds with much of this lazy approach, so too is his specific decision to enlist his personal favourite Stargirl into the cold rough & tumble JLA headed by Amanda-sociopath-Waller.

So having digested the last two issues of Justice League I am left in the position of having to reevaluate my opinion of Geoff Johns. On the one hand he churns out vicious morally bankrupt pap like Forever Evil, installs Lex Luthor and cronies into the Justice League, writes Wonder Woman like a barbarian conqueror, thinks Simon Baz is an upstanding citizen and role model for American muslims... and yet. And yet. He can deliver the warm uplifting work he does in Aquaman and this months Justice League.

I therefore finally begin to consider that perhaps I am wrong about him. It's not that he likes writing dark vacuous ordeals like Forever Evil, it's that he has to. This is the direction given to him by the people above him.
As supportive evidence consider how Justice League improved so dramatically when Jim Lee left, from simple minded bubblegum to something much more considered and complex.

I think this dictat from above is what has affected a lot of DCs titles. Supergirl being a case in point. 28 issues in and Supergirl shows no signs of improvement as a character, in fact just the opposite. And despite Tony Bedard and Charles Soule's claims is it unreasonable to suggest not much is going to change after this Red Lantern arc is done and dusted...?

Anonymous said...

Honestly, having never followed a Supergirl comics in continuity before now, I don't see why she couldn't be dark(er), at least, until she overcomes her quite horribly traumatic past. She needs to work through the destructive, devastating turmoil of losing Krypton, her family, her friends, and her identity. She was never raised with powers, never told that she could do good or help others (unlike Clark/Superman). And then she arrives on Earth and it's a pretty grim DCnU out there.
I'm still enjoying, albeit anxiously, the current run. (If, as Anj says, this functions primarily as a character-building arc and not a gimmicky destruction-fest. Or both.)
I totally agree that DC marketing is missing the point, though. it's not a "big step" or out of character. DC communications fail.
Has anyone else noticed that their covers almost always don't show what's inside the comic at all?

Anonymous said...

Jesus Christ, man!!
These are SATANISTS living in their fginal days, their final groans, their final assault on anything from the light...
Let them DIE in peace & go to hell...
Don´t feed them...
Feel free to delete this if it frightensw you too much.
Please rest a little & take a deep breath...


Anonymous said...

So:A fan of Dark Supergirl here.(Though I still like light supergirl just fine)
Not a fan of *stupid* Dark Supergirl though.Better light supergirl if she's going to be a dope.Oh well.

They've already had characters around her act in stupid and or crazy ways to keep her from integrating any place she lands.
(I'm specially thinking back to the arc where she fights off Kryptonian superweapons, then immediately gets attack by the people she just saved)

And so on:It's obviously some editorial mandate.
Her reactions mostly make sense for someone with limited intelligence (except in the H'El arc where they don't).

I have to think a lot of what's being done with the character is being driven by misogyny:
Girls Not Smart! Girls Ickey! at best and the good old 3 V's at worst:Villain, Victim or Vixen.
And since Vixen has been ruled out(so far anyway) they vacillate between the other 2 without rhyme or reason.

Anj said...

Thanks for all the comments!

The biggest part of my problem here is the wording.

Whether you like a Dark Supergirl or not, whether you think it is company dictate or not, DC should either embrace the darker direction or move beyond it.

But don't make it sound like it is an odd direction.