Saturday, 31 December 2011

Fairytale of New 52

It's New Year's Eve babe,
In the kitchen,
Got a stack of comic books, to wade my way through.
They're DC52,
Four months worth actually,
And as I read them all
I'm gonna blog for you.

So it's four months since DC Comics essentially rebooted their universe amid much hoo ha from the comic book community and a bit of attention from the wider media.

DC, with a legacy of over 70 years making comic books, declared that it was going to cancel all its mainstream titles and relaunch with 52 new #1 issues. They announced a relatively diverse range of books: super-hero, horror, western, military, sword & sorcery. This variety hark ens back to when I first got into comics and you could find issues like Sgt Rock, Arak: Son of Thunder, Jonah Hex, Weird War Tales, GI Combat, etc. Still no funny animal book in the New 52, but you never know.

Initial reaction was mixed, with many fans saying they thought a reboot would make previous decades-worth of stories obsolete and provide the perfect jumping-off point for long-term readers. I understood those concerns, but I've been reading comics for over 30 years and have seen more reboots and retcons than most people have had hot dinners. I've come to see it as an inevitable fact of comic life.

However, when it came to the DC52 I thought this was a daring, brilliant idea! Y'see, I'm a DC kid. The first comics I remember picking up were DC comics: New Teen Titans, Adventure Comics feat. Dial-H-For-Hero, the Legion of Super-Heroes, DC Comics Presents. I LOVE DC!

But more recently they've always seemed to play second fiddle to Marvel in the sales and publicity stakes. The thought of a total, universal revamp was a crazy idea...but it just might work.

And I think, on the whole, it has. DC titles appear to be doing well in the sales charts, there is a healthy buzz about the New 52, and fans old and new are enjoying the books.

So, four months down the line, it seems an appropriate time to take stock of how I've found the relaunch/reboot/revamp whatever you call it. Over the next few days I'm going to reread the titles that I've been picking up and blog my thoughts on them.

Next Time on Bouillabaise Yum Yum: Animal Man.

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