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Friday, August 24, 2007

A Response to "Countdown to Change"

I hate to be a party pooper. I really do. But I've seen this linked around a number of places and honestly...

Well, I admit, I don't have the Occasional Superheroine's insider experience with the DCU, but I have to say, I think it's utterly wishful thinking.

Which means, of course, that it's going to be latched upon by a significant portion of the internet community who scorn superhero comics in general or hate the decisions of the Didio regime in particular.

But really, I think there are a lot of holes in the argument.

To start with, the section: 1) DC is not Marvel:

Specifically this:

By contrast, the serious personality flaws imposed on some DC characters in Didio's regime -- such as sociopath/killer Max Lord, sociopath/killer Superboy, "bad girl" Supergirl, rapist Dr. Light, cruelly unethical Leslie Thompkins, and amoral JLA -- have been superimposed, artifically added, uneccessary. They are "filth florin filth," what DC thought Marvel did to attract readers.

Now, what Jenette Kahn & Paul Levitz understood 20 years ago was that DC was not Marvel. They didn't even want DC to be Marvel. Instead, they concentrated on how to make the company even more unique. And that produced "Watchmen," Vertigo Comics, "The Dark Knight Returns," and a lot more.


Right, because sociopathic asshole Iron Man, tool (and now dead) Captain America, amoral Reed Richards, divorced Peter Parker and company are not at all similar to those examples of suddenly forced characterizations listed for DC.

Or for that matter: Hal Jordan going Dark Phoenix, asshole Batman, Earth-Angel Supergirl, Image-reject Vuldarian Guy Gardner (though I love him so)...they're all bright and shiny and fitting with DC's traditional iconic hero atmosphere. Really.

The darkening and gratuitous altering of characters is not new. Didio's regime started in 2002, a LOT of crap came before that. The fact is, the blogosphere is NOT really representative of the comic reading majority. We're a very vocal minority that may or may not represent a more silent audience. But really, this sort of soap opera darkening is something that the general audience tends to respond to. It gets them to buy comics.

Also, as a point of note: They DID acknowledge their mistakes at least with Supergirl and Leslie Thompkins. The former is being redeemed, the latter's misdeeds are retconned out.

Oh, and by the way, using Watchmen and DKR as positive examples AGAINST the arbitrary darkening/angstifying of major characters is kind of silly isn't it? I mean, really? It's not like Dark Knight Returns helped usher in the age of gratuitously assholish Batman or anything, right?

I can't say anything about the treatment of editors at DC (2). I don't know anything about that. I'd imagine, having been an editor, she knows her stuff, and thus I'll move on.

3)Stephanie Brown

You know, not every reader actually cares about Steph Brown? I mean, it's great that G-W.org took her up as a banner and all, and that she's spurred a greater visibility of feminist voices w/r/t comics. But honestly?

It's like HEAT. The controversy is what the comic companies thrive on. Notoriety gets people to read.

And honestly, I don't think that's even Didio so much. I'd imagine if someone lower on the scale wanted a Stephanie Brown memorial, they could sneak it in. Maybe not a case, admittedly. But a wing of a hospital named in her honor? Bruce could afford that. A foundation? A computer program warning of child heroes in risky situations?

Also, I sincerely think if any of the higher ups at Time-Warner really felt like this was a big issue, they'd have enforced it already. Didio's EiC, but there are folks over his head. They could force the issue long before firing him.

4) One-Trick Pony:

Okay, honestly? Just because it has "Crisis" in the name, doesn't make it a mimicry of what came before. If you look at comics long before Didio, it's ALWAYS been event after event after event. Invasion. Armageddon. Ragnarok. Zero Hour, Our Worlds at War yadda and so forth. Some are more memorable than others, sure. But it really isn't a Didio invention.

This part in particular makes me laugh:

Looking at a recent solicitation for DC, I noted that the majority of the titles are "Countdown" related. Oh my God! That's like if Marvel decided to make 75 percent of their books "House of M" spin-off series.


Like the 55 million Civil War tie-ins?

The thing is, while Countdown does have tie-ins dominating the solicit list, if you notice, they're all miniseries. Many of them miniseries coming out at nearly the same time (Search for Ray Palmer, for example). They're all really easily avoidable. The rest of the series, the non-Countdown related series are still running as we please.

The main series don't even tie in with Countdown that much. Sure certain events might be explored in depth in Countdown, but it's not necessary to read it to follow along. It's not like, say, Zero Hour, where EVERY series ran their own tie-in.

Okay, you know, I do get the criticisms of Countdown. I might like it, but others don't. The thing is, Occasional Superheroine even mentions that Didio's probably trying to cash in on 52. Because 52 was incredibly successful.

See, what that means to me is that even if Countdown fizzles, Didio's still got a lot of credibility for having spearheaded 52. He took something successful once, tried to duplicate it, with somewhat less success. I think marketers can understand that. Meanwhile, the sales numbers might be dwindling lower than usual right now, but I'd be interested in comparing them to the pre-Didio numbers.

And really, guys? Countdown IS counting down to something. Whether or not you like the idea of Final Crisis or not, it's going to be pretty big. AND by the way? It's being penned by Grant Morrison.

It's gonna sell.

5) Dan Didio is not Joe Quesada

This one boggles me a little. Their public persona are so very different, and their administration styles appear to be so different, that I can't even begin to understand what this one means.

Especially since, didn't DC declare at one point that there would be no company crossovers as long as Quesada helmed Marvel?

Maybe that has more to do with their interior politics, which admittedly, is something Occasional Superheroine would know more than me. I also don't see the problem with an Alpha Dog mentality. (6) It seems like aggression would be something encouraged in an EiC. Absurd gender essentialist elements aside. Corporations and the business world tend to value "alpha dog" personalities.

Finally, as for 8) Raising the "red flag" at Time-Warner...

Okay, not being particularly insightful in the politics behind the ownership of DC, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Time-Warner probably doesn't care.

My own personal bet is that Time-Warner is interested in marketing movies. It'll be interested in DC primarily as holders of the trademarks for the characters that will be in said movies. And anything that gets the name of the product in the public eye, however briefly, would probably be seen as a benefit for the movie industry.

Heck, there's always the "Well, even if the comics are fucking up, the movies are at least getting it RIGHT" mentality. Most casual fans are not going to pin their gripings about the comics onto the movies themselves. And every mention of Batman or Superman in the news is just going to kind of bounce there until "Hey, the new Batman movie's coming out! I want to see that!"

As for "Mother Jones", I'm not saying it's not an influential publication. It is. It may even have a greater readership than the entire comics industry.

But by the same token, most of those readers do not read superhero comics. (The ones who do already know this stuff.) And as much as Levitz and company are trying to court female readers, I don't necessarily think the readership of Mother Jones is the target audience. Do you really think that Time Warner is going to care that Didio managed to get a bad reputation among people who aren't reading superhero comics anyway?

They're not going to look at it as having lost potential readers, they're going to look at it as having angered a subset that would not be buying their comics regardless of who's at the helm. What are they going to do? Stop buying the comics that they're already not buying?

Besides, this is also the same editorial staff that got accolades in the New York Times for their increasing diversity. Sure, we may all think the Batwoman situation ended up botched, but that's not what the NYTimes is reporting on.

And honestly, I think the NY Times goodwill probably cancels out, in Time-Warner execs heads at least, the bad Mother Jones press. (A lot of which centers around an issue that has since undergone steps to be rectified. I mean, okay, say it DOES blip Time Warner's radar, the most likely scenario would be something like: "What the hell are you guys doing? Look at this article!" "Oh that, yeah, sorry. We're actually working on fixing Supergirl as we speak." "Huh, okay then.")

9)Lack of innovation:

You know, I have to wonder exactly how innovative they expect the editor in chief of the DCU to be really. It's the DCU after all. There's a certain expectation for product that doesn't allow for the levels of deviation that branches like Vertigo can maintain.

However, this is also the regime that's recieved public acknowledgement for their increased diversity with characters like a lesbian Batwoman, a hispanic Blue Beetle, a Chinese Atom, a black Firestorm...

Countdown may not be as successful as hoped, but 52 was pretty groundbreaking when it comes to getting a weekly series out on time with a high readership and reasonably high levels of quality.

I'd say that counts for innovation really. Not every innovation has to be successful.

And if Marvel Zombies actually counts as innovation, I'll eat my hat.

10) Sales

Okay, no one can deny that DC is selling less than Marvel. But...is DC really in competition with Marvel? I mean, think about it. It's not an either/or deal. Most comic fans buy some DC comics and some Marvel comics. If they buy more Marvel comics than DC comics, that doesn't mean that DC comics aren't bought.

(And I can't help but wonder what's not being said in those diamond lists. What about back orders or trade paperbacks? How do those things factor in?)

Didio doesn't have to outsell Marvel, he just has to have a profit margin better than his previous regime. Even a slump right now doesn't take away that DC is pretty clearly improved from its 1990s situation. The elimination of costly and poorly selling prestige comics alone, ought to say something.

Okay, as for the last two points (11 and 12), well, it's not like late books are a problem only endemic to DC. Marvel's really had as many problems. Especially since a lot of Marvel's infamously late books were like Civil War. Which, given the number of tie-ins, was rather problematic. DC's late books tend to be things like Wonder Woman or Green Lantern. Which, while frustrating, did not have nearly the impact on the whole line. And notice how now that both of those comics are involved in major crossover events...they're on time again!

Finally, Countdown is debatably a sinkhole. Fine. I personally think it's a niche market comic not intended for the wider audience of 52, so it's not going to have the same numbers and no one ought to expect it too. But your mileage may very.

Still, it's ONE SERIES. Okay, say it does fizzle completely. Say it gets pulled tomorrow. What happens then?

The mini-series tie-ins either get dropped or revamped. Okay. Final Crisis either gets dropped or brought in another way, okay.

As for the rest of the DCU...I think they'll probably just continue as normal. All-Star Superman continues as normal. Sinestro Corps War continues as normal. Superman, Batman, JLA and all those cash cows...continue as normal.

Sometimes series fizzle. It's not the end of the world. Sure Countdown's big press, but it's ONE failure after a string of considerable sales successes. (There's a REASON the guy is milking IDC/Infinite Crisis/52).

Maybe I'm wrong, maybe Didio will step down or get fired tomorrow. Maybe in 6 months. Maybe in a year. Maybe he's got a long career ahead of him. Who knows. But this active, gleeful "Didio is doomed" stuff is simply silly. This list of would-be sins is over-simplified, repetitive, full of holes, and approached from a very narrow, biased, perspective. (As is, to be fair, this counter-argument). I sincerely believe that if Didio does end up leaving his position, those won't be the reasons behind it.

It's wishful thinking, plain and simple.

32 Comments:

  • At August 24, 2007 2:26 AM, Anonymous jlg said…

    I guess I'm the party pooper pooper? Sorry if it gets too long...

    1.) I think the Marvel comment was more along the lines of how DC is into larger-than-life icons and epics, while Marvel is more "grounded" and realistic. Note that the examples you mentioned - Evil Hal Jordan, asshole Batman - are regarded as mistakes and eventually undone. These didn't fit in the same continuity as the more mainstream friendly Superman stories of the Golden and Silver age, or what the general audience knew from the cartoons and movies.

    Watchmen and DKR were not in continuity, and were aimed at a much different audience. So I think OS's point was the mature line and the mainstream lines all blurred together into an unrecognizable mess.

    I think you're right to note DC's attempts to improve itself (Supergirl, the Thompkins retcon, Morrison on Final Crisis).

    However, it's not going to appeal to everyone. If what turned someone away from DC wasn't what happened to Supergirl or Dr. Thompkins, these moves aren't going to mean much.

    3.) I think the point of the Girl Wonder movement is that a memorial would be easy to add, so why is DC continuing to dodge the issue?

    I do sorta feel that too much is placed on just Stephanie, but I don't think it's any less influential or meaningful.

    4.) True, event-overload isn't exclusive to Didio, but it's something that hurt the industry in the '90s. You can only go to the well for so long (and it's bound to hurt Marvel too).

    I don't think Marvel's free from criticism, either. The New X-Men death toll has been criticized as much as the JLI/Young Justice/Titan toll. It's just Marvel seems to be on a roll with its events selling more than DC's.

    It doesn't have to be a competition, but that's what the Direct Market has become with a shrinking pool, and Marvel has something like 45-47%. Those lost readers do mean a lot if they add up. Those sales reports from Newsarama and The Beat don't paint much of a positive picture. I think Blue Beetle is the only remaining Didio spinoff left.

    8.) And when you don't have any new readers to appeal to or coming in, that's an added problem. Mother Jones is going to drive an audience away. It's not the good kind of bad press.

    Marvel can afford to rely on the movies because they have a big slate with a bunch of big successes. DC, meanwhile, is struggling to get anything other than Batman out of the gate. Superman barely managed to be successful enough for a sequel. Wonder Woman has been a big disaster.

    For something billed as the "spine" of the DCU and trying to drum up hype for the big event, it's failing when it's selling less than 52 and sinking. They way Didio's framed Countdown as a major part of understanding DC, you can't really jump ship the way you can with a self-contained title (like 52 largely was).

    For all we know, the gestures DC has made to change might just be panic moves.

    You're right that Didio does have a lot of credit from the IC/52 sales successes, but I think OS' is arguing he's quickly running out of good will from it.

     
  • At August 24, 2007 2:39 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    You've got some good points (though I don't really think a lot of them can be pinned on Didio himself, or necessarily would be considered reason for his firing on behalf of T-W. Especially since most apply to both companies evenly), but I really do question how much "new readership" the Mother Jones article will drive away.

    Like comics themselves, Mother Jones is a niche market. Admittedly, probably a larger niche market than comics, but still...I don't think anyone's expecting the new crop of readers to come out of that audience. (Which may be a blindspot, sure, but I doubt it's one specific to the DC management).

    As long as there's still stuff like the NY Times coverage of Batwoman to balance it out, I think they'll be okay with it.

    Also, really, by that logic, everyone involved with the Mary Jane statue fiasco would be long gone, wouldn't they?

    Finally, while Didio's grace period from IDC/IC/52 undoubtedly will run out, I really doubt that one fizzled series ("backbone" or not) and a couple of political blunders are really going to cancel out five years of fairly high-rated success. (Especially compared to the mess that came before).

     
  • At August 24, 2007 8:02 AM, Blogger Rich said…

    I was going to post something similar to this - and find that you've got there first again!

    I agree with virtually everything you say, especially as regards the relationship between TW and DC; frankly the bottom line is all that matters to a corporation like TW. And if the bottom line drops somewhat then yes, changes can sometimes happen - but honestly, if anyone thinks that the TW board are bothered that Stephanie Brown doesn't have a memorial in the Batcave then they're mistaken.

    DC is a revenue stream and a holder of trademarks and copyrights. I suspect that more revenue and profits will be derived from the Superman and Batman trademarks and licensing than almost all of DC's comic sales.

    And while DC's %age of the direct market appears to be shrinking if you read the sales stats, the fact that that market is growing - laregly driven by events and Marvel - then I expect that you'd find that the actual sales are probably pretty steady.

    Please don't make me do a spreadsheet to back that up.

     
  • At August 24, 2007 9:51 AM, Blogger Ragtime said…

    Dr. Thompkins being a murderer got retconned out? I must have missed that. When did it happen (or, not happen, I guess). If it didn't happen, is Stephanie still alive somewhere?

    I agree with you completely about it not really being a sales-numbers competition between DC and Marvel, or even between 52 and Countdown. I was thinking about the latter sales numbers though, and while we math skills are a little rusty (I USED to be good at math, though) and my business skills are non-existent:

    52: $2.50 X 100,000 issues = $250,000 per week.

    Countdown: $2.99 X 72,000 issues = $215,280 per week (plus you save money by printing 28,000 fewer issues).

    To the extent '52' was a financial success for DC, I would think Countdown would be to. You can't just look at sales numbers without also looking at the higher cost.
    (Unlike you, I am not actually enjoying Countdown much -- although i am still buying it for some reason.)

     
  • At August 24, 2007 9:55 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    One of the backups in 52 specifically stated that Stephanie Brown was tortured to death. No mention of reaching the hospital or Leslie killing her.

    Admittedly, it's not concrete, but I vaguely remember someone reputedly asking DC folks (possibly at a panel?) if Thompkins as a murderer was actually retconned out with that and had it confirmed.

    Admittedly, not the most reliable info, but I have my own wishful thinking sometimes. :-) Besides, it shouldn't be too hard to confirm...

     
  • At August 24, 2007 11:44 AM, Blogger Ragtime said…

    Thanks for the update.

    Okay, so Leslie didn't kill her, but she's still dead. So, is Leslie still in exile in Africa, or has she appeared recently back in Gotham (I don't buy any of the Batman-family monthlies (unless Birds of Prey counts in the Bat Family), so my knowledge of continuity end with "Face the Face" or whatever that first post-IC arc was called.)

     
  • At August 24, 2007 1:34 PM, Blogger SallyP said…

    Well said as usual. I truely don't understand all the doom and gloom. I've been enjoying a LOT of DC books. Less so with Marvel, but that's mainly due to Civil War.

    And yes, "Civil War" and now "The Initiative" is also be plastered on practically every Marvel book. Exactly like "Countdown".

    The days when Marvel used to refer to DC as their "Distinguished Competition" are long gone, and I put that squarely on Quesada's shoulders.

     
  • At August 24, 2007 1:55 PM, Blogger Elayne said…

    "Didio's regime started in 2002, a LOT of crap came before that. The fact is, the blogosphere is NOT really representative of the comic reading majority." I had to smile at this, because back before 2002 when message board fans, and before that Usenet posters, were complaining about these exact same things, THEY had to be reminded that "Usenet is NOT really representative of the comic reading majority" as well. :)

     
  • At August 24, 2007 1:57 PM, Anonymous mhr said…

    I think the most compelling arguments from the Occasional Superheroine post can be boiled down thusly:

    1) Dan Didio's comics aren't a whole lot of fun. Identity Crisis was no fun. Infinite Crisis was no fun (other than the artwork). Countdown is no fun (and bland, too). 52 was fun, but mainly because it was a self-contained entity which the writers were allowed to run free with. One Year Later was entirely pointless. And many of the reboots and restarts and relaunches surrounding all those events have also been no fun (c.f. The Flash, Wonder Woman, yadda yadda yadda).

    Sure, Marvel has a lot of No Fun going on these days, too (that's what happens when you get Mark Millar run the asylum, frankly), but it also has interesting pockets of Lots Of Fun, mostly revolving around the Armageddon books (which are very 52-like in their structure) and anything written by Greg Pak (who's turned out to be Geoff Johns-plus-plus).

    2) Having hitched his wagon to these big Event books which have turned out to be basically No Fun, Dan Didio's probably going to crash and burn once everyone realizes, "Gee, DC has really been No Fun for the last three years, and it doesn't look like the fun's coming back anytime soon!"

    All the other stuff in the O.S. post (Stephanie Brown, Time Warner, Levitz & Kahn, etc.) are window dressing: The bottom line is that DC has been one big Event after another for several years now, only one of them has been any good, and eventually that's going to catch up to them. And when that happens, someone's going to be held accountable. And it's not going to be the writers, because it's all coming from editorial: These books are being driven by editorial, rather than hiring good creators and letting them produce good stuff.

    And that's No Fun.

     
  • At August 24, 2007 3:01 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    mhr: That's a good point. But ultimately it's also a very subjective point.

    There is no objective definition for "fun".

    Different things are fun for different people. Personally, I think they're all fun. Now whether I'm indicative of the greater comics community that just goes to the store and buys their stuff...who knows.

    The thing is, just because a bunch of bloggers (and I include myself in this number) pan something, that doesn't mean that the majority of comic buyers actually feel the same way.

    I really doubt whether T-W cares whether a handful of internet voices think something's fun or not, the bottom line will always be the profit margin. I don't think we have enough information in that case to say how well Didio's been doing or not.

     
  • At August 24, 2007 5:07 PM, Blogger universalperson said…

    My only response is this: Tread softly Kalinara, because you tread on our dreams.

    Lots of people want Dan Didio to go, so why are you hurting our quasi-logical justification!

     
  • At August 24, 2007 6:11 PM, Blogger Ragnell said…

    Hey, UP, some people are quite happy with the general direction of the DCU and/or some very specific changes made since Didio was brought on.

    If this counterargument is treading on your dreams, how do you think they feel about your gleeful doomsaying?

     
  • At August 24, 2007 6:32 PM, Anonymous Mark Engblom said…

    Occasional Superheroine: Consider yourself fisked.*

    *Fisked: A point-by-point refutation of a blog entry or (especially) news story. A really stylish fisking is witty, logical, sarcastic and ruthlessly factual; flaming or handwaving is considered poor form. Named after Robert Fisk, a British journalist who was a frequent (and deserving) early target of such treatment.

    Nice work, Kalinara.

     
  • At August 24, 2007 7:36 PM, Blogger LurkerWithout said…

    I'm pretty sure mhr means Annihilation, not Armageddon...

     
  • At August 24, 2007 9:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I honestly don't understand what people are getting so worked up about. All in all I'd say that DC is putting out more good comics now than, well, at any time in my comics-reading lifetime (which started in about 1979).

    Yeah, I can do without a lot of the crossovers, but crossovers have been a reality since the mid 1980s and it'd be foolish to expect Didio (or any other executive) to do away with them.

    For every painful stupid move DC makes (raping and murdering Sue Dibny springs immediately to mind), DC is also in the habit of undoing at least as many previous mistakes (example: bringing Ice back, and making us fall in love with her sweetness all over again). I am happy with the overall trends and can only hope they continue.

     
  • At August 24, 2007 9:57 PM, Blogger universalperson said…

    Ragnell: That would depend. Who are these supporters and which changes do they like? Obviously, I'd care more about the feelings of someone who dosen't want to see Green Lantern: Rebirth retconned than someone who dosen't want to see Identity Crisis retconned.

     
  • At August 25, 2007 12:00 AM, Blogger The Fortress Keeper said…

    Everything is subjective.

    I do think that DC for the past three or so years as been desperate to prove its just as "hip" as Marvel by raping Sue Dibny, torturing Stephanie Brown and murdering Orpheus (people forget about that one) and having Black Adam disembowel just about everybody he encounters.

    And retcons don't count in my book, cuz the stories are still out there!

    I, for one, loved a lot of One Year Later until the books were dragged down by delays, creative team defections and aborted storylines in two high-profile series (Action & Wonder Woman).

    Marvel does have its issues, and JQ is a big doofus, but right now a lot of their titles are more interesting than DC. (Barring poor Spider-Man of course, who only catches a break in alternate-universe stories ... )

     
  • At August 25, 2007 12:34 AM, Blogger Ragnell said…

    Up -- Yet those of us who care little for your fannish likes should silence ourselves when we disagree, and be supportive as you alternatively whine about and gleefully cheer for an end to the stuff we enjoy. Got it.

     
  • At August 25, 2007 1:28 AM, Blogger John L. said…

    This comment has been removed by the author.

     
  • At August 25, 2007 1:30 AM, Anonymous jlg said…

    Ragnell: Alternatively, just because everything's going your way and you like it, doesn't mean those of us who don't like DC's decisions and current direction should just shut up and go away.

     
  • At August 25, 2007 1:35 AM, Blogger Ragnell said…

    JLG -- If you read universalperson's and my comments closely, you'll see I wasn't the one who brought up the "please be quiet for the sake of our hopes" argument. I was the one responding to a person who wanted that right to complain and fantasize about a change in the current staffing but wanted those of us who were satisfied with the editorial decisions to be quiet.

     
  • At August 25, 2007 1:41 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    JLG: Everyone has the right to voice their own opinion. That includes dissenting opinions.

    Of course, I say this as someone quite satisfied with the general status quo at DC.

    AND as a fan of Identity Crisis who's glad it's not up for retcon. Make of that what you will.

     
  • At August 25, 2007 1:49 AM, Anonymous jlg said…

    It was just framing UP's (and any anyone who agrees with OS and UP) objections to Didio-era DC as "whin[ing] about and gleefully cheer[ing] for an end to the stuff we enjoy" didn't sit well with me. Sorry if I took it the wrong way. It's good you're enjoying DC's output, but Didio leaving will most likely be the only way we get what we like back.

     
  • At August 25, 2007 1:55 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    I can't speak for Ragnell, but as I read her comment, it wasn't referring to Universal Person's comment as whining/cheering, but rather the people referred to IN said comment.

    (Though qualifying one's sympathy based on whether one is a fan of Green Lantern or whether they're a fan of Identity Crisis seems awfully silly to me. :-))

    Basically, the people whose dreams I ruthlessly crushed by picking apart what I see as failings in the argument. :-)

    I was actually the one who first brought up "gleeful people who hate Didio" in my original post as a mention of quite a few people who latched onto Ms. D'Orazio's argument.

    (Disclaimer: I do not think everyone who agrees with said argument is a gleeful Didio hater. However, I do think they've missed logical fallacies. Because I am, of course, always right. :-))

    I do think perhaps we might want to all retreat to our corners for a bit though. :-) Some of us like Didio and some don't. Let's all just agree to disagree there, okay? :-)

     
  • At August 25, 2007 2:31 PM, Blogger universalperson said…

    You realize I was kidding right?

    Quasi-logical implies that its not a logical argument.

     
  • At August 25, 2007 3:14 PM, Blogger Ragnell said…

    UP -- Wait... You make jokes? Since when?

     
  • At August 25, 2007 8:59 PM, Blogger Siskoid said…

    Hm... I wonder if I'd been more on Occasional Superheroine's side of the argument if I had read it first. Probably not because to me, bold statements like assuming a person will be fired because we don't like his work, well... that doesn't happen very often, does it?

    Maybe I should just check what I'm buying and what I find to be fun and/or moving (i.e. interesting) either in rag or trade form:

    Brave and the Bold (fun), Booster Gold (fun), Fables (fun and moving), Manhunter (fun), All-Star Superman (fun), DMZ (moving). That's the DC column, along with every Showcase Presents that comes out (I can't say that about every Essential Marvel by a long shot, and yes I consider these choices to be decisions of the current administrations even if the work reprinted was done long ago). The Image column has Invincible (fun). The Marvel column has Nextwave (fun) and... possibly Iron Fist when I can track down the first collection to try it out.

    That's not a lot of Marvel, and one of them is canceled, but those Initiative etc banners are intimidating as hell.

     
  • At August 26, 2007 12:55 AM, Anonymous DavidH said…

    Most of the complaints being done against Countdown are by Zombies, Indie snobs, people upset that it isn't 1985 anymore, and/or people with an axe to grind against DC.

    The first clue is the "this is why I'm starting to like Marvel" statement. It conviently ignores the amazing titles DC has put out this year and conviently ignores that Marvel has been doing the exact same thing they slam Countdown. Like the bogus "no fun" response you received.

    The second is when they always make negative comments against DC and never have anything to say negative about Marvel.

    Seriously considering that in the last year Marvel has had Endangered Species (talk about an event that no one cares about), World War Hulk, the Initiative, Silent War, anniversary to Age of Apocolpse, Annihilation, etc.. it takes a lot of chutzpah to slam DC for Countdown.

    But, then, they have agendas don't they?

     
  • At August 26, 2007 8:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    "Most of the complaints being done against Countdown are by Zombies, Indie snobs, people upset that it isn't 1985 anymore, and/or people with an axe to grind against DC."

    Yes, this is a pretty typical fan rationalization towards any kind of negativity. However, this method works both ways, too. Using that kind of 'logic', one could also say that kalinara and Ragnell defend what DiDio does out of fear that there won't be any more issues of his pet MANHUNTER series (which logically, should have been axed long ago).

    Meaning that maybe, perhaps, some fans simply need to UNCLENCH from reading too many blog postings for awhile. :)

     
  • At August 26, 2007 9:57 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    Anonymous: No, no, no. By that logic, Ragnell and I are only defending Didio because we're afraid Hal Jordan would get killed off again.

    :-)

    We're insane Green Lantern fans first and foremost after all.

     
  • At August 27, 2007 3:06 PM, Anonymous Thom said…

    "Most of the complaints being done against Countdown are by Zombies, Indie snobs, people upset that it isn't 1985 anymore, and/or people with an axe to grind against DC."

    Naw. Countdown was just an annoying and jumbled mess. Yes, both Marvel and DC are guilty of crossover mania, and one is not really doing less (practically all of DC's new titles in the last year were somehow tied to a "Crisis" event, while that is not true so much for Marvel, practically every title they publish crossed over with Civil War). But the cold hard truth is...Countdown was just weak and I could not justify paying $2.99 every week for it.





    Make mine Marvel!!!!!!!!! ;)

     
  • At August 27, 2007 8:10 PM, Blogger Lisa said…

    And to add to Ragtime's first post, multiply those issue numbers by 52 - since it comes out every week.

    52: $2.50 X 100,000 issues = $250,000 per week.

    Countdown: $2.99 X 72,000 issues = $215,280 per week (plus you save money by printing 28,000 fewer issues).


    Even if Civil War sold twice as many copies per issue, 52 and Countdown still beat it in overall sales. See, with a weekly series, even if it sells less per issue, that can be made up for in overall sales.

    As for OSH's original post, I felt like there were some pent-up issues she was venting indirectly. Personal things that she hid behind the "Marvel is not DC" taglines.

     

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