Tim Callahan and Chad Nevett are blogging about Mainstream Comics Being Increasingly Lame (Or Is It Just Them). It may be just them, but if it is, then it is just me too.
Tim says "I was easily reading 25-30 comics a week in 2008, I'm down to 8-10 a week right now." Well I used to read 4-6 comics a week and now I am down to one -- Morrison's Batman -- that I am getting, not be cause I like it, but because Morrison-Stewart and Morrison-Quitely have enough capital built up with me that I sort of owe them at this point. But just barely. Oh, and I get Detective Comics because the JH Williams art is awesome, but I also have this bad habit of just forgetting to buy it, which I supposed speaks to my involvement being minimal. It is the kind of thing I would like to admire in a nice hardcover. Because I am not invested in the story, only the art, I was never really "hooked," though I will eventually get every issue.
Maybe it's the Morrison lull that I'm feeling -- or we're all feeling -- with the giddiness of "Final Crisis" and "Batman" being replaced in recent months with the atrocity of the most recent "Batman and Robin" arc. I'll take Tony Daniel over Philip Tan any day, if I were forced to make such a choice. Or maybe it's the kind of events we're seeing now compared to last year. I don't think "Blackest Night" is aesthetically worse than "Secret Invasion," but Bendis's event comic at least sparked plenty of discussion. With "Blackest Night," the conversation amounts to, "who's going to come back as a zombie next?" And even though you may or may not enjoy the series -- I do, and you don't -- nobody seems to care about the answer to that question. And justifiably so.
It's diminishing returns.
I did not even like Batman (which was a mess with no ending) and I only liked Final Crisis in theory. For me, this kind of collapse started a long time ago, back when Seven Soldiers fizzled and Planetary started to go wrong and Morrison dropped The Authority after a great start and WildCATS before he could do anything. And I was mad Civil War was a waste of time (Cap just suddenly gives up because he knows it is issue seven), and that House of M was so bad (MAGIC!), and that World War Hulk was declawed (Tony Stark did not do anything wrong after all -- it was a big bug monster who killed Hulk's family). Frank Miller's Batman never got off the ground. I stopped laughing at Mark stuff like Wanted and Kickass. I read all of Claremont's pre 1991 X Men stuff but then when X-Men Forever started I was just sort of bored.
Between the ages of 15 and 20 I read all the X-Men books for five years -- right after Claremont left: Age of Apocalypse, and Generation X and Onslaught, and Stryfe. Then I matured by moving beyond the brand and to the writers. I was in a new decade and the shift made sense. Suddenly I did not care who the hero was: I wanted Morrison's JLA, Miller's Batman and anything by Alan Moore. And I just couldn't invest in the X-Men like I used to.
The thing is I am in a new decade NOW. I am 30. (Chad, Tim -- your ages?). And I am hoping that it is just a coincidence that I cannot invest in the stories now because the market is bad because maybe movies or Big Events or something are temporarily screwing up the field, sucking talent away or making editorial more important than writers. I mean I loved All Star Superman and Casanova but right now they feel like my send off. That was the high note and it is time to stop showing up on Wednesdays. Cause those two books were the whole point of the whole thing. For now I wait, and hope that something better comes along, in the worlds of Rolf and Kermit
In the meantime here is what I would like:
I would like Image Comics to figure out how to make Fraction / Ba / Moon's Casanova super-profitable so those guys never have to do anything again.
I would like DC to get Frank Miller back on Batman and just publish any insane idea he has on the subject. And screw making money on that one. Frank Miller just deserves it. Hell -- give him the character. Like the Rights.
I would like DC to get Morrison and Quitely on anything other than Batman because that character's history -- Frank Miller in particular -- is fucking up the best team in comics.
Morrison and Cameron Stewart should do Seaguy just whenever they want.
Marvel needs to find a writer for Chris Bachalo and DC needs one for JH Williams. Someone NEW. Or someone from another medium. Something with a real thrust to it. Forward momentum. This LOST thing is ending -- maybe someone from there is rich enough to not care comics don't pay that much.
And while I am wishing for things that will never happen -- I think David Mamet should write a Batman movie.