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TheMidnighter

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xx Batman: Earth One
« Thread started on: Jul 19th, 2012, 6:45pm »

Batman: Earth One, written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Gary Frank, takes place outside of continuity and tells the origin of Batman. This origin is not like the one we know. In fact, it's completely different and the characters are all different as well.

I just finished reading it. I have to say I care very little for the book. Yes, it feature characters absolutely different than the Batman/Bruce, Gordon, Alfred and Bullock than we are used to but this book does not do anything spectacular besides that. It is as if the changes are for change's sake but there was no afterthought. The story is simply Bruce being a Batman that isn't at the top of his game (nothing new for a 'realistic' origin story nowadays) and he's trying to find his parents' killer (he has an idea who it might be). The only redeeming quality this book has is Gary Frank's art. The book is beautifully drawn, detailed yet crystal.

All in all, I cannot recommend this book to anyone. If you're a Batman fan, this is not the Batman you know. In fact, the entire setting and characters come across so unfamiliar, they have no meaning. If you love a good story, don't read this because, after all is said and done, this story is completely generic. And that is what this book really is: a stale, boring tale with names you want to recognise but every character in this book is worse off than their normal counterpart (as if having more faults makes this book realistic all of a sudden).

Has anyone read it?
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xx Re: Batman: Earth One
« Reply #1 on: Jul 19th, 2012, 7:54pm »

But you're missing the point, ITS NEW AND FRESH AND A GREAT PLACE FOR NEW READERS TO JUMP ON!
That's all the industry cares about. Not the patrons they have, those they do not. That's why we get two Spider-Man origin films in a 10 year span. That's why we have all the ".1" Marvel stuff. That's why we have new ZERO origin issues coming out within a year of a complete fucking reboot.
There was a time when I bought everything that said BATMAN on the cover. I didn't even bother flipping through this. I picked up the free preview thing and probably won't open it.
It's the internet age. We know how and why Bruce puts on the suit. We know how Peter got his powers. It's insulting to have it crammed down our throats so often. If a writer wants to start a new take on an old character, give him / her a different name. Put him in a different city. Be CREATIVE with your creativity. The character ceases being the character if you change too much. Like the Transformers "live-action" movies. Like the new Alien Ninja Turtles.
Everything is in print now. Most of it in digital form. If someone doesn't know what Weapon X is, they can look it up or download it.

I'm tired. I'm disgusted. I haven't even been posting here; I feel bad about that.
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TheMidnighter

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xx Re: Batman: Earth One
« Reply #2 on: Jul 20th, 2012, 07:10am »

I have exactly the same, snipe. I also bought everything Batman related. I loved Batman, I got into it in 2003 and now have a collection dating back to before I was even born. It was exciting: I really dig the character and it was -- I admit -- exhilarating to have a collection this big so I wanted to keep up with the collection.

The past few years, I dropped more and more of my books. I used to collect X-Men, Batman and Spider-Man books (as well as a multitude of smaller series such as the Ultimate line and WildStorm stuff) but I let go of them one by one. One More Day was something I couldn't take and I dropped Spidey, The New 52 made me stop with Batman (apart from Batman: Incorporated) and Avengers vs X-Men had me cancel my X-books.

I am now without any single issue comics and, frankly, I feel great. Throughout the years, the superhero comics have done little for me. It never felt original and it always felt rehashed, recycled but worse than before. (I didn't even buy this book. I simply found it. Somewhere.)

It's the elusive "new reader" that we have been talking about on these boards for months, even years (and sequart has a cool article on). They're not here, they won't show up, comics are a dying medium and the Big Two should focus and storytelling to retain their fans of auld.

None of that is happening so I have to agree with Alan Moore: the publishers are accelerating the death of the industry and, honestly, I feel great about it.

I think Mark Millar is the personification of what the comic industry means nowadays. Millar writes books and creates properties and characters not for the comics, just for the movie rights. Comics are a great springboard to launch ideas and get paid movie money for them. For Marvel and DC's big budget movies and their household names, this is even more important. This, and the acquisition of both Marvel and DC by movie studios, make it necessary for the comics to stay the same old, boring and stale worlds.

But I suppose I should call that "iconic" nowadays, just to make the boredom sound fun and wanted.
« Last Edit: Jul 20th, 2012, 11:38am by TheMidnighter » User IP Logged

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xx Re: Batman: Earth One
« Reply #3 on: Jul 21st, 2012, 05:07am »

This sounds exactly like how I expected it to be. I love Gary Frank's artwork, and that was the only thing that even gave me a passing thought on this title. Honestly I think Geoff Johns is hugely overated and I think he has been a big factor in the creative crash of DC and the Reboot.

on Jul 20th, 2012, 07:10am, TheMidnighter wrote:
... the acquisition of both Marvel and DC by movie studios, make it necessary for the comics to stay the same old, boring and stale worlds.


This statement makes me very sad, because it is true. huh I think the world would actually end if they put Stephanie Brown in a Batgirl costume in a movie, I think DiDio would nuke the world before he'd let that happen. Well either that or he'd just digitally recolour her hair red in post-production, and everytime anyone mentioned her name he'd redub every line with "Barbara" himself if he had to.
« Last Edit: Jul 21st, 2012, 05:14am by Nick » User IP Logged

TheMidnighter

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xx Re: Batman: Earth One
« Reply #4 on: Jul 21st, 2012, 3:33pm »

I think Marvel and DC are now officially the followers. It used to be that superheroes media followed the comics. The comics dictated what was the DC Universe or the Marvel Universe and the cartoons, television series, movies and action figures followed that.

I think the reverse is now true, in that comics follow general opinion instead of dictate it. It's as if the comics are now a 'ghost reaction:' a reaction of what Marvel and DC think is the public's knowledge of their superheroes. "People think that Batgirl is Barbara Gordon. We must put Barbara back in the costume! If some person is interested in the Batgirl comics but does not see Barbara in the costume, they will never buy the comic!"

I don't get it. I got into comics (seriously) with Uncanny X-Men #343. I only read several random comics that lay about my school and I watched the cartoon. I wasn't put off by this -- I was already interested. Being thrown into this new world where you didn't know what was going on but you knew that thousands of stories had taken place... It was better than I could have hoped for because I knew I could really delve into the characters! I knew they would be rich of story and history.

I leave you with this quotation from Sequart (I posted the link earlier), from a man that has had the same experience as I.


The reason for this to my mind is that comics are simply a difficult hobby to stick with. Its not as easy to partake in as TV, the time investment is much greater than something like movies, and the cost is not negligible. Its a hobby that cant be engaged with half-heartedly and it breeds passionate, dedicated fans for just that reason. The kind of fans who refuse to miss going to their comic store every Wednesday for fear of having their favorite book sold out and slip through their fingers, the kind of fans who obsessively go over the intricacies of 60 some odd years of complex continuity ephemera, the kind of fans who find space in their homes for thousands upon thousands of single issues in long white boxes. The problem with finding new readers is that the kind of people who are going to read comics for the long term are the kind of people who are going to start reading comics regardless of whether or not theyve been provided with an easy entry point. The fans of comics are the ones who become excited at the notion of universes so vast that theyll never have the time to read every single story, theyre the ones who feel that obsessive need to collect, and theyre not ones to be scared off by the fact that a comic doesnt have a #1 on the front.

The first issue of a comic that I bought with my own money was Uncanny X-Men #393, its an unremarkable issue but its also part of a crossover that spanned between multiple books, and as I read that issue a sense of infinite possibility overwhelmed me. Here was a story that had been going on without my knowledge, a huge seemingly world ending conflict that was spanning multiple titles and huge amounts of characters Id never heard of before, and the effect wasnt off-putting, it was engrossing. I pored over that issue time and time again trying to glean more details from it, figure out who the characters were, and imagining the events that had led to this story. By the time I put that issue down I was hooked, the world it promised was so big and so involved I couldnt help but want more even if the issue itself was sub-par.

Events like 52 and The New 52 may engender some outside attention, but its hard for me to believe that the people who arent enthralled by the breadth and depth of the worlds Marvel and DC have created are likely to be permanently ensnared by what those events offer. The advent of digital comics will help new readers adverse to making a trip to a comic store every week and theyll allow a reader to house a massive collection of comics without need for huge amounts of physical space, but the final stumbling block to becoming a fan of superhero comics is one that cant, and shouldnt, be removed. Its that little box in the corner of a comic that points the way towards another story, another event, a hint that theres always more to uncover and see. The worlds of superheroes and their stories are endless, and while 52 and The New 52 tried to say that anyone could hop in and read a superhero story, three years from now the people who will still be reading them wont be the ones asking, What did I miss? Theyll be wondering, What can I read next?
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xx Re: Batman: Earth One
« Reply #5 on: Apr 25th, 2013, 1:46pm »

Quote:
The reason for this to my mind is that comics are simply a difficult hobby to stick with. It�s not as easy to partake in as TV, the time investment is much greater than something like movies, and the cost is not negligible. It�s a hobby that can�t be engaged with half-heartedly and it breeds passionate, dedicated fans for just that reason. The kind of fans who refuse to miss going to their comic store every Wednesday for fear of having their favorite book sold out and slip through their fingers, the kind of fans who obsessively go over the intricacies of 60 some odd years of complex continuity ephemera, the kind of fans who find space in their homes for thousands upon thousands of single issues in long white boxes. The problem with finding new readers is that the kind of people who are going to read comics for the long term are the kind of people who are going to start reading comics regardless of whether or not they�ve been provided with an easy entry point. The fans of comics are the ones who become excited at the notion of universes so vast that they�ll never have the time to read every single story, they�re the ones who feel that obsessive need to collect, and they�re not ones to be scared off by the fact that a comic doesn�t have a #1 on the front.

The first issue of a comic that I bought with my own money was Uncanny X-Men #393, it�s an unremarkable issue but it�s also part of a crossover that spanned between multiple books, and as I read that issue a sense of infinite possibility overwhelmed me. Here was a story that had been going on without my knowledge, a huge seemingly world ending conflict that was spanning multiple titles and huge amounts of characters I�d never heard of before, and the effect wasn�t off-putting, it was engrossing. I pored over that issue time and time again trying to glean more details from it, figure out who the characters were, and imagining the events that had led to this story. By the time I put that issue down I was hooked, the world it promised was so big and so involved I couldn�t help but want more even if the issue itself was sub-par.

Events like 52 and The New 52 may engender some outside attention, but it�s hard for me to believe that the people who aren�t enthralled by the breadth and depth of the worlds Marvel and DC have created are likely to be permanently ensnared by what those events offer. The advent of digital comics will help new readers adverse to making a trip to a comic store every week and they�ll allow a reader to house a massive collection of comics without need for huge amounts of physical space, but the final stumbling block to becoming a fan of superhero comics is one that can�t, and shouldn�t, be removed. It�s that little box in the corner of a comic that points the way towards another story, another event, a hint that there�s always more to uncover and see. The worlds of superheroes and their stories are endless, and while 52 and The New 52 tried to say that anyone could hop in and read a superhero story, three years from now the people who will still be reading them won�t be the ones asking, �What did I miss?� They�ll be wondering, �What can I read next?�


cheesy Wow. Couldn't have said it better...But how come they (DC/Marvel) don't seem to realize this? There are a lot of people working at DC and Marvel that I think are well-thinking human beings, with heart and feeling for what they are doing. Is it really only for the money? If so, maybe this helps in the short-term, but in the long run, they will lose, right?
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