—Paul Pope should collaborate with his nephew more often. That kid is an idea machine.
—Obviously, it’s still pretty early but I’ve gotta say, I’m starting to get more and more worried about Frank Miller’s Spirit movie. For example, the poster. Now, the image-elements-forming-words motif is a standard Will Eisner trick, one that’s associated with Eisner’s The Spirit. But shouldn’t those image elements form the words “The Spirit” rather than the tagline? And what on earth is up with the color palette? Why does The Spirit look like he’s rocking black and red, and no blue? Wouldn’t that be like putting The Shadow in a blue hat and trenchcoat, or Dick Tracy in head-to-toe read?
And now we’ve got a teaser trailer:
More black, white and red coloration, rooftop acrobatics that look like a jokier, less-appropriate-to-the franchise version of those in this trailer
and that dialogue? My God, it sounds like a parody of Frank Miller dialogue. Ragnell’s response seems like the most appropriate one: “I can’t watch this with a straight face.”
The Spirit is a pretty challenging character to take from comics to film, since, as I’ve often said about attempts to update the character in comics, there’s nothing terribly compelling about him, his setting, his villains and supporting cast—It was Eisner’s execution of all those fairly generic elements that made the comics at all worthwhile.
The Spirit minus Eisner is not a very strong starting position, no matter who is tasked with making something out of it on paper, but then to jump into a whole new medium on top of that?
And Hollywood hasn’t had a whole lot of luck when it comes to heroes of Spirit’s vintage, either creatively or at the box office. See Dick Tracy, The Phantom, The Shadow and The Green Hornet. Oh that’s right, you can’t see The Green Hornet, because it hasn’t made it out of development hell yet. See what I mean?
Still seems less likely to suck as badly as Watchmen, though…
—Hey, waitaminute…why’s The Spirit teaser end with the titular hero saying, “I’m on my way?” That was Dick Tracy’s tagline, and was featured at the end of the trailer for that film (and in the poster and ads that ran in comics back in, Jesus, 1990?).
— Say, it looks like DC is launching a new Power Girl ongoing comic. That’s…unexpected.
I like her okay as part of an ensemble, as in JSoA or the old JLE/JLI, but never cared for her much as a lead, particularly now that her status quo is basically, “What if Superman were a lady…with really big breasts...and cried a little bit more often?”
I’m still totally planning on trying it out though, because it looks like DC’s managed to get Amanda Conner to draw it. And Conner’s about the only person I could imagine doing this book at DC and not completely fucking it up.
Confidential to whoever edits this book: you'll want to keep Kevin Maguire on speed dial for fill-ins; his style is similar enough to Conner’s to make for a good stylistic match, and shares her strength with facial expressions.
—So Amanda Conner, Gail Simone and Nicola Scott will all be working on ongoing DCU titles at DC shortly. Three women working on regular DCU titles. At the same time.
Wow, I think they’ll then have more than the Minx line does…
—So DC finally realized that if Supergirl were capable of selling T-shirts and purses and plastic crap with glittery pink S-shields on it to little girls, maybe she could also sell them a comic book? About time.
I’m not all that fond of the costume design, which is basically just Superman’s with a skirt instead of a pair of manties.
I still like Dean Trippe’s Supergirl design
and Mai K.’s Supergirl design
a lot better, but, hey, at least there’s a Supergirl comic in the works that it doesn’t make me sad to think of an actual girl actually reading.
—A typically interesting review/thinkpiece by Savage Critic Abhay Khosla examines why DC’s Blue Beetle comic has been a failure, despite its strong internet following, generally positive critical reactio and writer John Rogers’ strong finish of his run on the book.
I remember reading the first issue and thinking it was just an awful, awful comic. I gave it another try a year and a half later, and it was by that time one of DC’s better super-comics. So I look forward to the rest of Khosla’s analysis; so far, it mirrors my own experience pretty strongly.
Plus, sex jokes.
—The big reveal at the end of Captain Marvel #5 doesn’t make Civil War: The Return suck any less.
—I was previously hoping Geoff Johns would make Thomas Wayne and Aquababy Black Lanterns in his 2009 zombies-with-power-rings event-story “The Blackest Night.” Now I’m hoping Schatzi gets a black ring.
—Despite the Power Girl and Supergirl announcements, there was lots of bad news for DC fans in this week’s Lying In the Gutters col. Richard Johnston reports that it will indeed be Martian Manhunter dying in Final Crisis, which is too bad, but sure to be temporary (I’ve said it before and I’ll probably say it a dozen more times, but, man, once you bring Jason Todd back from the dead by having Superboy-Prime punch the walls of continuity, how can any death be seen as permanent in your fictional universe again? Particularly when the character in question is in essence a completely mental organism that controls its body on a molecular level).
But Johnston follows that up with, “But in the last issue, Barry Allen comes back.”
Oh man, I hope that’s misinformation someone’s feeding him, like he said his previous report that Barry Allen would be the leader of the Black Lanterns. Because aside from the fact that Barry Allen is one of, like, two deaths in the DCU that should never be undone (the other being Jason Todd, of course), I can’t believe that many people actually care about Barry Allen anymore. He’s been dead for 22 years now. That’s just three shy of an actual generation now.
The worse news? “I hear Brad Meltzer is working on a new heavy-DC-continuity series. A thematic sequel to ‘Identity Crisis.’”
I don’t know what exactly “heavy-DC-continuity” means exactly, but I don’t like the sound of it. Actually, I don’t like the sound anything in that sentence after the word “hear.”
—While searching the Grand Comic Book Database for cover images to link to from my Tuesday post about DC’s many (many, many) gorilla characters and stories, I decided that the company has more than enough material for a few volumes of Showcase Presents: Gorillas! collections.
I know I’d totally buy ‘em.
—You know, the bumper stickers and billboards in the backgrounds of panels are nice, and coverage like this is no doubt nice PR for Marvel, but if Marvel doesn’t publish a comic come November about the three-way race for the Marvel White House between Stephen Colbert, John McCain and Barack Obama/Hilary Clinton, they’re missing out on the opportunity for a hell of a good comic.
Don’t you want to read a comic where the candidates have to take positions on the SHRA, outline their proposed trade policy with Atlantis and Wakanda, and tell voters how they propose to clean-up the streets from Mutant Growth Hormone? Where they have meetings with The Daily Bugle editorial board to try and secure J. Jonah Jameson’s endorsement? Where they have to explain to pro-choice and pro-life interests groups not only how they feel about abortion, stem cell research and cloning, but also cloning killer cyborgs that look like Thor?
—Question time: I didn’t finish Countdown, and only lasted somewhere between five and eight issues, but I did flip through it now and then throughout the rest of the year. Like this week, during which the final issue shipped. (Well, I flipped through it until I saw a panel of Mary Marvel saying “I’m Mary damn Marvel” and then I flung it back towards the shelf before it could hurt me).
Anyway, did they ever get around to explaining why Captain Atom became evil and decided to conqure the multiverse? I didn’t see him in that last issue at all.
And whatever happened to Superboy-Prime and Mxy?
—Just FYI, I am going to be out of EDILW HQ much of this week, vacationing in beautiful Northeast Ohio. I’ve tried to “work” ahead a bit, but chances are still pretty good that there may be some disruption in daily posting around, oh, Sunday or so. Or maybe the posts will just be a little lazier than usual. One or the other.