Shawn’s writing reviews this month so I will be opining today. And I will not be making any sweeping declarations. Comments such as - the new DC 52 is a complete failure! – or on the flip side - the new DC 52 is the greatest thing ever! – will not be uttered. The new DCU is just beginning. We have only seen fourteen out of fifty-two number one issues at this point with nary an issue two, three or four in sight. What follows is my first impression of the new DCU.
And as a long time reader of the old DCU my one prevailing thought when reading the new DCU titles this week was…this is weird!
Kinda expected what we got out of Justice League #1 last week. Not sure what I expected to read this week but it really wasn’t this. Not saying that as a negative. It just all felt a little weird to be reading what I was reading.
Of course, DC said the new 52 would be a jump on point for new readers. Wow. Was it ever. Every issue basically started from scratch. Some books such as Batgirl or Animal Man touched on aspects of what has gone on before but if you were looking for any kind of continuity from the old DCU, and I was, it really didn’t happen. A fresh start all the way around.
DC said they will not be telling talking head stories. And they did not. Every issue had tons of action in it!
DC said they are cutting out the story telling gimmicks. And they did. Every issue started at point A and told a linear story throughout.
DC said each issue will be able to stand by itself while still be part of an overall story. And they did. Thought each issue was a “complete” comic while setting up what was to come.
So I will be giving DC credit today. From a general, overall, first week perspective it appears that DC has accomplished what they set out to do.
And I really liked having no time jumping, also know as the one week ago syndrome. Really liked that they didn’t get bogged down in explanations about who each character was or their "motivations". Really liked that they jumped into the story. Really liked that each issue told a story. Really liked that either Superman or Batman made at least a token appearance in most issues to add a “universe” feel to the books.
So overall I’m actually quite pleased with the beginning of the new DCU.
Now I might be getting ahead of myself here as we still have three more weeks of number one issues to go but…as a long time DCU reader…I would appreciate it if I do start to get some explanations in issues 2, 3, or even 10. And while I know the Barbara Gordon being able to walk explanation is coming, there were three characters in Stormwatch that I didn’t even know! So definitely need to flesh out the stories but that is what issues 2,3 or 10 are made for.
Which brings us to the specific #1 issues released this week. Matt and Shawn will be reviewing them all on Saturday. I’m giving them grades today!
The Best Book Nominees – That’s an A!
ANIMAL MAN #1
DETECTIVE COMICS #1
SWAMP THING #1
The I enjoyed. Totally willing to read more. – That’s a B!
ACTION COMICS #1
HAWK AND DOVE #1
JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL #1
The I’m not so sure about. Issue #2 better be good. – That’s a C!
GREEN ARROW #1
MEN OF WAR #1
The uh-oh! One issue might have been enough – That’s a D!
The I don’t like the character and to be honest didn’t even make it through issue one. – That’s unfair!
STATIC SHOCK #1
Rest of the Best Book Nominees tomorrow. Comics without a DC logo on them did indeed ship this week. See ya!