Sunday, June 19, 2011

DC Relaunches Their Entire Superhero Line

DC Comics announced they were canceling their entire line and relaunching with 53 titles that are a mix of old titles (Superman) and new titles (Fury of Firestorm). This isn’t just a ploy or some weak ‘jumping on’ point for new readers – they are actually erasing decades of muddled continuity and starting over with a new universe. And this new universe will work WildStorm characters in (DC is offering The Grifter, StormWatch, and Voodoo ongoing series). I looked around the internet for articles and read as much as I could.

I’ve been reading comics for almost thirty years and I’ve always been a fan of both DC and Marvel titles. I was there for most of DC’s milestones. I was there for The Killing Joke, the Death of Superman, A Death in the Family, 52, Countdown, Identity Crisis, Final Crisis, etc. I had a lot of fun in this DC Universe but the problem with all that continuity is that it takes a lot of effort to triple check all of your stories to make sure they don’t conflict with established continuity unless you’re changing a character’s back story (like in Byrnes’ “Man of Steel” mini) and it handcuffs the writers’ creativity.

I currently enjoy a few DC titles and like checking in on others from time to time but I’m excited that the DCU is starting over fresh. From everything I’ve read, origins and costumes may be tweaked or changed all together to make them more current. For example, Batman may still lose his parents and dedicate his life to fighting crime but his parents might die in a drive-by shooting or a disgruntled employee might plant a car bomb – or his origin will stay the same.

Bob Wayne at DC Comics stresses, “[This] is the launch ofthe New DCU.  It is not a 'reboot.'” I’ll be ordering all 52 titles to see if I like them. All 52? Yes. I don’t think I’ll ever see another universe-wide relaunch like this again in my lifetime. This is a really exciting time to be a comic book fan.

I’ve read a lot of negative stuff from the fans but DC isn’t relaunching with new writers and artists. All of the great writers and artists at DC will be working on the books and I’m sure they’ve been cooking this up for a year or more. Before Justice League #1 (the first book of the relaunch) is released, you can bet that there is plenty of foundation laid out to ensure that there are great stories to tell for years to come. 


Teen Titans #1 cover by Brett Booth

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