Apr. 28th, 2011

thehefner: (Default)
My pal [livejournal.com profile] surrealname likes to cite Silver Age Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen as everything that's bad and wrong with comics. You know, the comics where Jimmy Olsen became anything from, oh, say, a giant freckled turtle monster, a wolfman, a Bizarro, a helium-bloated alien mule boy, a poor man's Elongated Man, not to mention the holy trilogy of filming a gorilla, becoming a gorilla, and marrying a gorilla (with the help of witch-doctor Superman). For Dave, it's the equivalent of disdain that many self-serious, old-school fans have for Adam West's Batman show: it's why superhero comics have and will never be taken seriously.

Needless to say, I love this crap. Maybe it's because I've grown up in the post-Miller era where comic fans and creators are terrified to be fun, because they're so desperate to be taken seriously. The Dark Knight's success has as much to do with this backwards mentality among fans as it does with actual quality. That's why I love the TV show, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, because it joyfully embraces all that's great and ridiculous in comics in an earnest way that's somehow reverently irreverent. When they recently did a whole episode of tributes to Silver Age Superman crackiness, I was in heaven. Do I want all my comics to be ridiculous crack? Hell no, I love a well-told, mature, serious superhero story, so long as it actually is all three of those things. But I also long to see comics embrace their history rather than run away from it, simply because that stuff is pure COMICS in ways that no superhero movies could be. It's fun as hell, and at its best, it emphasizes the "awe" aspect of "awesome," a badly-abused word in this day and age of Scott Pilgrim.

So theoretically, I should be in love with the current Jimmy Olsen comics coming out by Nick Spencer. After all, tons of fans and even comic bloggers adore this new take on Jimmy, which giddily incorporates all of his Silver Age silliness into a modern context. But as I read the universally-adored first few parts, something seemed amiss, starting with Jimmy's interaction with his ex-girlfriend, Chloe Sullivan (yes, Chloe from Smallville, making her comics debut). This Jimmy isn't the lovable dork who constantly gets caught up in trouble. He's an oh-so-cool slacker who lives in a world of wonders with smug bemusement rather than awe, fielding girl troubles due to his own douchebaggery and being the Nice Guy (TM) who clashes with a richer, more handsome, more overtly-jerkwadish rival.

In short... Jimmy Olsen is now Scott Pilgrim.

Pass me that Haterade, Dave. It's the perfect storm of meh-feh-BLAH.
thehefner: (Batman: I Am The Night)
Considering how universally-praised Grant Morrison's Batman comics are by all comics blogs and press, it feels incredibly refreshing to read Georgethecat's frustrated response to yet another Morrison fan's condescending attitude:

Like, I honestly don’t give a fuck about how much Grant Morrison knows about the Batverse. What I care about is a good story and a story that has a point. And I’m really not sure I saw one with this nor did it do anything, but raise more questions and plot holes. And what is the point of the book? Like what is Grant’s overall arching theme? And why did he do all this introduction and development of Kathy Kane to only drop it?

And who are these characters, the Orto Netz? Where did he come from? And I swear, if anyone reblogs this and says, “Oh he’s from Batman issue #217” I will actually hit something. Because fuck, I do NOT want crib notes to read my Goddamn comics. This is EXACTLY one of the biggest problems with comics right now. They desperately need new readers and need to draw in new people and reading almost any Bat-story by Morrison is going to confuse the fuck out of them, then they are going to ask questions and be told they should read some obscure fucking story that they don’t have access to and then they’re going to feel like it’s not worth their time because the club is too exclusive and they don’t know enough to join in on the Great Morrison circle jerk.

The bolded parts are mine, but the whole thing is just... god, when can they make an app that allows you to hug comments? I need that in general, but especially now. Granted, I haven't been reading Batman Inc., but George's comments apply to ALL of the other Batman work he's done so far.

I really wouldn't mind them so much if it weren't for the elitist snobbery of the fans, who love the way that Morrison makes them FEEL smart. That right there is about the smartest thing about Morrison's writing, which is generally rich with clever ideas and devoid of anything that makes for a good story.

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