Monday, October 19, 2020

DC January 2021 Solicits

The DC Comics solicits for Jaunuary came out last week and I have to say, I have never been more fatigued with DC than I am now. And remember, I have lived through a lot.

I don't even know if I can adequately explain or even want to. But because of METAL (which I am not reading) the DC Universe timeline is again ripped to shreds. And DC is taking two months off to give us some sort of Elseworlds mash-ups before we get back to continuity storytelling.

It feels like Convergence all over again and just a handful of years after Convergence!

Here is a link to the Superman solicits and my thoughts: 

But seriously, another reboot? I think we are number 4 in the last 20 years?

card stock variant cover by ALEX GARNER

Kara Zor-El, Superman's hot-tempered cousin, has finally found peace and purpose away from Earth and its heroes. Now known as Superwoman, she watches over the Moon and the refugees from across the galaxy who have congregated there. But all of that is about to change when a spaceship piloted by a runaway alien crash-lands and turns Kara's world upside down! Does this fugitive come in peace? Or does this arrival bring war to our hero's front door?

Why not start out with something that totally irks me ... this Future State Kara.

When the creative team of Bennett and Sauvage was leaked I was actually excited. They wrote a pretty good Kara over in Bombshells. And I thought at least she wasn't ignored in the event.

Then the solicit dropped. 

Hot-tempered. Away from Earth.



Why must DC always default back to an angry Kara who abandons Earth. That isn't Supergirl. 

Moreover, in this future state world she is at odds with Jon. So now she wants to fight her family again.

This take never works. And I am just sick to death of it.

art and cover by RILEY ROSSMO
card stock variant cover by IAN MACDONALD

Whatever happened to the Legion of Super-Heroes? The team is no more, and the United Planets are in total chaos as one of the Legion's own has turned on the entire galaxy! Everyone is affected...and not everyone survived! Ultra Boy tries to put the Legion back together to face the future head on! Find out the fates of all your favorite Legionnaires like Shadow Lass, Triplicate Girl, Brainiac Five, and Bouncing Boy. Plus, a shocking twist in the Legion mythology—and a long overdue appearance by the Legion of Substitute Heroes! It's all here in a truly way-out tale by writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist extraordinaire Riley Rossmo!

I am a little more sympathetic towards this one. I love the 5YL Legion. I don't mind the old school Adult Legion stories. And we are still learning about the current Legion. So a peek to a dystopia before we (hopefully) snap back to current storytelling here is okay.

I think Riley Rossmo's art is wonky and probably perfect for this sort of story. And I am glad Bendis is on board as writer.

"Superman of Metropolis" written by SEAN LEWIS
"Superman of Metropolis" art by JOHN TIMMS
"The Guardian" written by SEAN LEWIS
"The Guardian" art by CULLY HAMNER
"Mister Miracle" written by BRANDON EASTON
"Mister Miracle" art by VALENTINE DE LANDRO
cover by JOHN TIMMS
card stock variant cover by INHYUK LEE
card stock blank variant cover

Before leaving for parts unknown, Clark Kent entrusted Earth's safety to his son. Now, Jonathan Kent is Superman! Top priority for this new Superman: to protect Metropolis. When a new version of Brainiac attacks, Jon takes drastic measures—which result in the Bottle City of Metropolis! But watch out, Jon, because Supergirl is on her way, and she is not happy with your decision.
Meanwhile, in the new bottle city, a new hero has risen. Jake Jordan, the former Manhattan Guardian, came to the City of Tomorrow to start over. But he's not the only one who wants a new beginning. An anarchist calling herself Honest Mary sees this time of trouble as an opportunity for rebirth—and she'll tear down the entire city to prove her point. Does Jake have what it takes to save his new home from disasters both inside and out of the bottle? Superman's former pal Jimmy Olsen is going to make sure he does!
Finally, the current Mister Miracle, Shilo Norman, is also in the bottle, and he's looking for a way out! He'd better be careful, though, or he may end up someplace unexpected. It's a story that continues in Superman: Worlds of War #1!

 Superman off Earth.

Jon bottling Metropolis.

Supergirl is 'not happy' and heading to fight.


Jon Timms being here and a new Shilo Norman story makes this a bit more palatable.

written by MARK RUSSELL
card stock variant cover by SIMONE DI MEO

Welcome to Lexor, home of the greatest businessman in the Multiverse: Lex Luthor! After years of prosperity, Lex's utopia is at last ready to join the ranks of the United Planets and promote peace among worlds. However, Lex has never done anything unless he had something to gain from it. What could he be up to this time? Sounds like a job for Superman and his wife Lois Lane, the Earth representative to the U.P.! It's time the Man of Steel shut down this former Metropolis magnate once and for all!

Now as a young Anj I used to read these Lexor stories and be intrigued. Lex as a hero on another world? Why not just live there and stay out of Superman's business.

So a re-inventing of Lexor is a little bit intriguing to me. I have only heard good things about Mark Russell and I am a fan of Steve Pugh and Yanick Paquette.

"Superman: Worlds of War" written by PHILLIP KENNEDY JOHNSON
"Superman: Worlds of War" art by MIKEL JANíN
"Midnighter" written by MICHAEL W. CONRAD and BECKY CLOONAN
"Midnighter" art by GLEB MELNIKOV
"Black Racer" written by JEREMY ADAMS
"Black Racer" art by SIYA OUM
"Mister Miracle" written by BRANDON EASTON
"Mister Miracle" art by VALENTINE DE LANDRO
cover by MIKEL JANÍN
card stock variant cover by RICCARDO FEDERICI

This monumental Future State title features four big stories! 

First, Clark Kent is gone, leaving a Superman-shaped hole behind. People gather in Smallville to celebrate their hero, little realizing that he is across the galaxy helping others. Superman has gone to Warworld, where he fights as a gladiator in the deadly pits of Mongul. But this is Superman we're talking about—and his idea of a victory does not line up with the expectations of Mongul's hordes!
Meanwhile, on the other side of Warworld, other agents are at work, struggling for a better life. Shilo Norman, the man known as Mister Miracle, has ridden a Boom Tube across the cosmos from Metropolis to finds himself at odds with an entire planet!
At the same time, Midnighter, the greatest fighter from Earth, is punching his way through a whole mess of trouble. He's on the hunt for a new energy source deadlier than Kryptonite. His goal: to shut it down before it gets unleashed on an unsuspecting universe.
On top of that, the Black Racer, a girl raised in the slums of Warworld to be one of its top competitors, turns betrayal into a crusade to fight for the freedom of others like her.

Warworld meets Superman:Exile meets Fourth World meets Midnighter.

The artists are all top notch.

written by DAN WATTERS
cover by LEE WEEKS
card stock variant cover by JEREMY ROBERTS

The sun has set on the heroes of the past, and a new age is dawning! As two arrogant gods challenge one another to a contest of strength, Superman and Wonder Woman are forced to take action to save their cities from the chaos. Together, Jonathan Kent and Yara Flor, man of science and woman of myth, have the potential to become something powerful, but that's only if they can learn to get along! Can the two fledgling heroes put their differences aside long enough to save the world they have sworn to protect?

Nice Lee Weeks cover. I like Leila Del Duca's art. 

But overall, so many of these sound like scrapping together the discarded pages of the now defunct '5G' project into something while new books get organized. These are all 'next generation' stories in some timey-wimey continuity.

I even lost energy as I was writing this post.

So fatigued.


Anonymous said...

To be fair, the Supergirl solicit does not sound SO bad to me. At least she is doing hero things, and she isn't far from Earth. And apparently, it's Jon who has screwed up this time, not her.

Also, I have no issue with her being described as hot-tempered since she has ALWAYS been hot-tempered. It'll only be an issue if the writer cannot tell the difference between "hot-tempered" and "angry and whiny".

Unfortunately, that's often the case, isn't that?

So now my brief bow to the altar of fairness has concluded, I have to say those solicits don't sound like something I would be excited about. Another boring event featuring another boring alternate future which will be forgotten before the year is over as DC creatives are busy deciding how to mess up their continuity further.

At the very least Supergirl is having a two-parter tie-in rather than being forgotten? Sadly I don't trust that creative team, I'm not sure that story is enticing me, and I think that suit doesn't look good.

By the way, adult Kara wearing white and red? Poor Power Girl. The fact that Tanya Spears makes an appearance and Kara Zor-L remains missing suggests that DC/WB have decided they don't need another version of Supergirl.

Anonymous said...

Hello from a french fan of supergirl,

First the good news :
Kara is in two series !
She is the protector of the moon and the refuges.
Maybe, she is the architect of this lunar city ?
And no more dark and metal !

I won't write the bad news, i will try to stay optimistic.

I will hopte that the senarists have learned the nuance between destructive anger (rage) and constructive anger (that wich pushes to stand up against injustice).

Anonymous said...

DC has gotten so tired and uncreative, that they refuse to make any new mistakes, and simply confine themselves to making the same mistakes over and over again. Thus for the fourth time in a decade we are having "Angry Supergirl" foisted on us. Y'know a counterfactual storyline wherein Supergirl FINALLY inherits Kal El's Mantle as Earth's Protector and becomes "Superwoman" is a perpetually fascinating storyline that holds it's potential literally from the Silver Age until Today. But this sounds like another cheap heat stunt in the making...oh and her costume looks like washed out hospital fatigues with a cape.


The League said...

This is the death rattle of Didio's time at DC. With the long lead time he was giving himself in comparison to the swan dive into an empty pool that was The New 52, I'm not shocked that DC had this work ready to roll and figured to recover cost by actually selling it. I honestly don't mind that (a) we're seeing some of what 5G was supposed to be, (b) this won't be DC-permanent for five years til they reset again, and (c) DC is taking a wee bit of time under the new leadership to figure itself out. To me, this is the final "but what comes on the other side might be okay" event of the Didio reign. Only, this time, we DO have new staff on hand who have an opportunity to not just re-do the same five things over and over that Didio really like doing.

Frankly, I would *welcome* a reboot of the DCU at this point. Or, at least, a line of books that acted as a reboot and the current continuity can continue on for a while as Earth2 or however they need to spin it. I wouldn't mind a Supergirl version that's a teenager who has adoptive parents and a supporting cast and a cat that flies around sometimes. Or a Superman that isn't dad to a 20 year old and has a secret identity (all of that told me the current continuity was about to get shelved anyway, btw).

So, we'll see. But I'm not blaming anyone currently at DC for whatever this Future State business is. I'm just glad it's going to get locked down to a few issues while the actual company gets its house in order.

Martin Gray said...

Anj, Anj, you’ve heard only good things about Mark Russell... all those Wonder Twins issues I’ve reviewed, some with Lex in, and you’ve not tried his work?

Anyway, nice round-up. I’m profoundly uninterested by this event - mind, I did like Convergence, so many great tie-ins. Again, see my reviews! And did the recent DCOCD podcast not convince you to take a look?

Yes, I am a super-nag.

It is sad that we’ve seen so many angry Kara takes this millennium that the idea is now out there that THIS is Supergirl. I say thee nay!

Jon looks mighty peculiar on that cover, like he has extra abs and internal organs, and I’m with JF, what a rubbish costume on Superwoman. As for the LSH, it’s far too early for me to be hugely interested in the new team’s future.

Anonymous said...

"By the way, adult Kara wearing white and red? Poor Power Girl. The fact that Tanya Spears makes an appearance and Kara Zor-L remains missing suggests that DC/WB have decided they don't need another version of Supergirl."

It's a reference, but I'm not worried about Karen being displaced or forgotten. First of all, Tanya was last seen in the present day trying to rescue the original Power Girl from that dimension Manhattan had her trapped in and getting stuck there herself. So any attempt to bring Tanya back would have to bring Karen back too. And when Manhattan restored the JSA the original Power Girl was with them, and I assume she'll be with them when we finally get our JSA relaunch DC has been dragging their heels with. I think Tanya really needs to get her own unique codename however. I don't see the Power Girl name being of any help to her.

Anonymous said...

At least you had some hope Anj. I had negative hopes the moment I heard that the Marguerittes will be helming the book. How they messed up a concept as easy as "superheroines in WWII" will forever be a mystery to me and their later works aren't exactly stellar so that crushed me.

The worst thing though is how DC keeps treating Supergirl : Kara is now Superwoman which should be nice but the Superwoman name at this point has only been a villain name, she has a costume that is a very ugly and pale imitation of her Smallville Season 10 costume(and I'm sure she wore it again somewhere else) and what's worse, she still hasn't grown, neither physiclly nor mentally(the hotheaded comment and how she throws a tantrum and decides to help space refugees on the Moon). I know people say that this whole shabang is DiDidio's death rattle for DC but this kind of incopetence towards the extended members of the Super family runs deeper than his bald head. It's unfortunately deeply rooted in DC by now and only people from the outside can do them justice at this point. It's not really a surprise that the best Supergirls at this point came from SuperHero Girls, both the first series for kids / girls and Lauren Faust's action-comedy series. And even in the latter show, where she's portrayed initially as a "Hell on Wheels", she grows and becomes better. In the comedic series! Meanwhile nobody can wrap their heads around Kara and her character ever since the old universe ended back in the day.

It's all so tiresome at this point. Old Kara has been dead and burried ever since CoIE and the new Kara is unfortunately a vehicle for writters to show why Clark having more relatives is a horrible idea and whenever some writters miraculously write a competent and enjoyable Kara as SG or PG, DC kicks them to the curb and refuse to fix her mistakes. Heck, Stanley Lau alone could probably illustrate and write a competent Supergirl story without any sort of dialogue, just by having her do usual hero stuff. Even the few fans on the net have given up hope with some Supergirl fan creators forever hanging their creative mantles as well.

Sorry for the rant Anj but I'd rather just watch the cartoon and read the comics from Amy Wolfram based on that show because at least they understood what was going on with Kara. Heck, her Power Girl episode alone has one of the best moral lessons in a story and it's drenched in comedy throughout despite that. And rather that than having whatever heavy handed idiocy DC will try to force on Kara with Future State.

Anonymous said...

I don't mind Kara growing older, but it should happen naturally, not Jon-style in a jump. Kara's youth is a precious rarity at DC where adults are the norm.

Some people wish for these great changes in a misguided notion that it is progressive. It is not. Kara is representation. She is young, most of DC is old, she is female, most of DC is male, she wears a dress/skirt most of DCs women wear pants, she is good and compassionate to the bone, most DC carries a duality etc etc

Kara brings something to the room by being who she is. Every writer that thinks they are advancing the character through changes just brings her closer to the DC norm. She becomes another Wonder Woman, Wonder Girl, Superwoman, Saturn Girl, Dove, etc etc etc.

Being as she is, she isn't just a female Superman. Kal is the DC norm. He doesn't do what Kara does. If Kal walks into a room of Titans, and Kara does so it is a massive difference to atmosphere and what that means, not just a difference of body parts.

First rule to any writer coming on to Supergirl: She doesn't need you to change her - she needs you to respect her as she is. If she isn't the character you wanted to write, write another character. God knows there is no shortage of tempered adult superpowered women at DC. And god knows there is no shortage of writers ready to take the pen and write great stories, stories about Supergirl. Not stories about Supergirl except you change everything you didn't like about her.

Anonymous said...

Here is the exact quote from Eddy Zeno's article re. Superman #415 in Back Issue #123:
"ith a cover blurb touting “Supergirl’s Secret Marriage,” the story’s official title was, “Supergirl: Bride of—X?” Written by Cary Bates, the editor was Julius “Julie” Schwartz. Interior art consisted of pencils by Curt Swan. Curt’s inker was Al Williamson.
Though online analyses and comments on Superman #415 (Jan. 1986) are scarce, in July 2008 a person going by the name of “Anj” commented: “Curt Swan is a legend, so any time I can see his rendition of Kara is fine with me. But in its entirety, this issue is not key to any Supergirl collection and might be best forgotten.”

For the record I still agree with our host.


Bostondreams said...

Guess I am a minority then in that I am very much looking forward to this book. Ah well.

Anonymous said...

I could care less about 5G lite here and I'm guessing the same goes for DC. This is probably just what was done and ready before everything went down with Didio being let go, along with the DC staff that followed. It reminds me of Convergence or Future's End and that's not a compliment.