I don’t often address my readers personally on the site; maybe that’s my own fault. I should probably do that more often. But with the backlash I’m seeing on Twitter and the Internet in general, I felt it was time to step down from the site’s usual air of snark and sarcasm and address everyone a bit more directly.
Now, you’ve probably figured this out by now: I love comics. I had a huge stack when I was a kid. They were worn out, covers long ripped off and the pages starting to shred, but I would flip through them and read every page voraciously. I still remember the day my mom presented me with what would be my first issues of The Flash (issue #47 & #54, if you must know; that those two are the first comics I can vividly and clearly remember probably explains a lot about me). When I was in middle school, I remember sitting on my bed and reading, of all things, The Incredible Hulk #466 (now known as the death of Betty Banner; she got better) and realizing that I really wanted to write a comic one day. I’ve taken long absences, brief absences, and been more than disgusted by the actions of creators and companies from time to time, but at the end of the day I fucking love comics.
Yesterday was just another Tuesday, spent reading up on various entertainment news and trying to figure out just what in the hell I was going to write for the website that day when the news of DC’s upcoming line-wide reboot, something that sent the Internet into a fury. I’ll admit, I’ve voiced my rage and spat my venom, but shockingly, it’s still going on right now. Dozens upon hundreds of comic book readers are proclaiming a publisher dead before the first issue has even hit the stands, cursing the name of DC and insisting they’ll never pick up another DC book.
I can’t stress enough how much this disappoints me. We’ve always been regarded as angry fan-boys (and girls), and the second this happened we fulfilled the stereotype to a tee. Why lash out with such hatred? It’s obvious that we don’t like it; hell, I’m with you. What DC is doing is atrocious, throwing out years of history and back story once again for the sake of simplifying stories so readers won’t feel so overwhelmed. But ultimately, this can be viewed as a good thing. When was the last time you saw this much mainstream discussion about comic books? More people are saying they’re interested in the new DC than have recently. I’ll still hold my breath, and if it succeeds I have to eat a large amount of crow, but ultimately I can see how this kind of shake up will have some benefits, even if it is just in the short term.
As fans, it’s time for us to put away our fangs and be the civil, intellectual types that we claim to be. So no more spewing venom on Twitter, or writing hastily put together letters slamming a creator. Let’s instead vote with our wallets. If you like a book, buy it. Begin supporting independent and creator owned titles so that the next generation of comics can come to fruition. And if that’s not enough for you…well, write your own.
We’ll still cover the reboot. And we’ll cover it with our trademark cynicism and sarcasm, no doubt. But know that we do so in jest. At the end of the day, all we can ask for is a good story; that’s the final criteria for us as to whether or not a book is good. So long as the character is engaging, the story is exciting, and the book is memorable, we like to think we’ll be happy. And we hope you are too.