Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Evil Forever and Ever

After recording some new Club of Heroes material last night with my good friend Evan Arnold, I felt really bummed about DC's current output. I think at some point I even said "Marvel is just kicking DC's ass right now". I couldn't quite put my thoughts into words as to what exactly was driving me away from the publisher that gave me my first sweet taste of the four color smack we call comic books. I cited Marvel's boldness with books like Hawkeye and Daredevil and the fresh takes on those respective characters as one thing that made the house that Stan and Jack built seem so much more appealing. DC's events like the upcoming Trinity War don't really sing to me, although the pictures are as pretty as ever. Am I finally emerging from a looong adolescence? Good god, are my tastes maturing?


Scanning over DC's solicitations for new issues coming out in September of this year, it seems that the lunatics are running the asylum and the villains are taking over for a month. They tried this in 2009 with the Faces of Evil banner, spotlighting the bad guys and gals that the creative department wanted to "push" at the time. As a matter of fact, many of those same baddies are featured in the September solits. The book to watch is in fact a new miniseries called Forever Evil, written by DC Creative Director Geoff Johns and drawn by David Finch. The Johns/Finch team are currently on display in the Justice League of America title, charting a course for a new, more militaristic version of the League brought together by the gov'ment to counter the "regular" Justice League. Forever Evil sounds like a fun time, especially with me being a huge fan of the old Legion of Doom from the Superfriends as well as the late lamented Secret Society of Super-Villains title from the 70's. I can take or leave Finch's art, but Johns has always been at his best when redefining villains and clarifying their motivations. It's what made his Flash run so epic, in my opinion. That, and seeing Mirror Master do coke off of one of his magic mirrors. "Wonderland" indeed. . .

The rest of DC's publishing line will be borrowing a gimmick from Marvel in the form of decimal point numbered issues (#23.1, #23.2, etc). Each franchise character like Batman or Green Lantern and each main team book like Teen Titans or Justice League will have multiple Forever Evil issues that month. New faces like Relic in Green Lantern or revamped villains like The Wrath over in Detective Comics will all get some face time and a twenty page chance to make as big a splash as they can. Some of these Forever Evil issues may actually be launching points for new series down the road. Chances are pretty good that Larfleeze the Orange Lantern of Avarice will have his own series sooner than later. The premise for the main Forever Evil mini suggests that the Justice League are dead or incapacitated in some fashion, so these may be more than brief asides. The entire output for that month resembles one huge story arc that could make or break the line for me. If the allure of these villain centric stories can't get me back on the DC bus, I'm not sure what can.

Bring on the bad guys.

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