iainpj: (hairy hero1)
( Jan. 14th, 2015 02:48 pm)
DC’S NEW POWER GIRL DITCHES THE BOOB WINDOW, LOOKS AMAZING (hitfix.com)

I'm ... astonished, really.

Mind, that second paragraph is a touch confusing. Earth-2 IS the original Power Girl's own universe, in the nu52 (and pre-pre-crisis DCU, for that matter) During the time I was reading "World's Finest", she and Helena (Huntress) were working on ways to get back to their own universe, something that Mr. Terrific found by accident. (I stopped reading because it was ... boring, really. A really huge chunk of the titles that DC put out after the last universe reboot were amazingly dull. There's just so much interchangeable ultraviolence with costumed weirdos you can read before it all kind of melds together, you know?)

To be sure, I don't hugely care, although I should. The only DC titles I read now are Batman, Batgirl, Astro City (which isn't any flavor of DC Universe) and Secret Six. And I only kinda sorta sometimes read the first two. Oh, and Gotham Academy, which is weird fun aimed at a somewhat younger audience. (In comic book stores. Yeah, that's going to work real well, that is.) I can only take so much grimdark/grim/grimmer/grimmest/positively-grimy ... especially since, once upon a time not that long ago, DC wasn't ALL that way.

But still. It'll be interesting to see how the audience reacts. "How can SHE be Power Girl? She's too young! The magickal boob window is gone -- along with the magickal boobies! And she's ... not blonde!"

(Purely a side note: Afro puffs. She has Afro puffs. In this day and age. DC, sometimes I really love the way you think.)

Also, the comments thread on that article is a hoot. (I think one of the artists may actually comment about the costume at one point, though I'm not sure.) Mind, I kind of agree with the general sentiment of "Why retread an old name with someone different? Why not come up with a new character name for a new character?" But then, there are a number of reasons why DC wouldn't do that. They wouldn't want the character name to fade away once she was in some other universe, they wouldn't want the name to fall into public domain (granted, they'd need to wait about 75 years from now for that to happen), they'd want to emphasize what connection there is between new and old, etc.

And, of course, the other thing is that if the audience emphatically rejects her early on, they don't have to stick with her all that long. "Convergence" this spring -- what DC is calling their next universe-reshaping event, as they've retired the term "crisis" -- will no doubt offer the opportunity to make all sorts of course corrections. (I plan to serenely ignore it until it's done and they've either restarted everything with new number 1 issues, or -- and I suspect this is more likely for some titles at least -- returned to the pre-Flashpoint numbering. It wouldn't surprise me at all for Batman, Detective, Wonder Woman and maybe Superman to return to the old numbering if they resurrect the old universe in any significant way.

But we shall see, I suppose. Alas.
This may wind up being double posted, as the importer from Dreamwidth appears to be having Issues again.

media relations / 12 January 2012 / and the first shoe finally drops


DC COMICS IN 2012 – INTRODUCING THE “SECOND WAVE” OF DC COMICS-THE NEW 52
Thursday, January 12th, 2012
By Josh Kushins

In May of 2012, DC Comics will release a “Second Wave” of titles as part of its historic DC COMICS-THE NEW 52 initiative. Six new, ongoing series will build on the shared universe and bold concepts introduced in September 2011 with the renumbering of DC Comics’ entire line of comic books.[...] The six new series will replace BLACKHAWKS, HAWK AND DOVE, MEN OF WAR, MISTER TERRIFIC, O.M.A.C. and STATIC SHOCK, all of which will conclude with their eighth issues in April....



Given sales, I can't say that any of the cancellations surprises me. All but one of them would have been a hard sell, conceptually. I haven't heard much about Blackhawks, OMAC or Men of War -- I don't know anyone who read them, and I didn't care enough to look up the reviews. Everyone I know who tried it, and the few reviews I've read, say that "Hawk and Dove" was outright awful.

"Mister Terrific" was on my pull list, and I can say that ... it wasn't very good, frankly. [...] The one title where the cancellation saddens but doesn't entirely surprise me is "Static Shock." Sad, because it would have been nice if the title had been given a little more time to find its audience. Unsurprised because, if you didn't read the previous Static Shock title or watch the animated series, this title would have been utterly baffling....


(And on a purely webgeeky note: smart quotes in the URL, DC? Really? Surely you know better than THAT.)
media relations / 12 January 2012 / and the first shoe finally drops

Given sales, I can't say that any of the cancellations surprises me. All but one of them would have been a hard sell, conceptually. I haven't heard much about Blackhawks, OMAC or Men of War -- I don't know anyone who read them, and I didn't care enough to look up the reviews. Everyone I know who tried it, and the few reviews I've read, say that "Hawk and Dove" was outright awful.

"Mister Terrific" was on my pull list, and I can say that ... it wasn't very good, frankly. [...] The one title where the cancellation saddens but doesn't entirely surprise me is "Static Shock." Sad, because it would have been nice if the title had been given a little more time to find its audience. Unsurprised because, if you didn't read the previous Static Shock title or watch the animated series, this title would have been utterly baffling....


Questions? Comments? Sabots? Sneakers?
I'll certainly have more to say about the whole DC ... thing -- at excessive length, belike -- but for now, all I'll say is: Occasionally, "The Gutters" really takes me by surprise.
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iainpj: (Default)
( Apr. 5th, 2010 11:10 pm)
So the 2010 Hugo Award nominations (for works issued in 2009) were announced. And some of them were great, and some of them were just ... odd. I mean ... odd.

Just to sample a few:

Best Novel
(699 Ballots)
Boneshaker, Cherie Priest (Tor)
The City & The City, China Miéville (Del Rey; Macmillan UK)
Julian Comstock: A Story of 22nd-Century America, Robert Charles Wilson (Tor)
Palimpsest, Catherynne M. Valente (Bantam Spectra)
Wake, Robert J. Sawyer (Ace; Penguin; Gollancz; Analog)
The Windup Girl, Paolo Bacigalupi (Night Shade)


In one of those remarkable moments, I've actually read three of the nominees. Of those, I'm pulling for Palimpsest; the idea of civilization as a literal disease is an utterly awesome concept, and I thought it was executed brilliantly.

I have somehow managed to read hardly any short fiction this year. Not sure how that happened, quite, but I think I've read one of the short stories and one of the novelettes. So I have no opinion on those.

Then there's this:

Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form
(282 Ballots)
- Doctor Who: "The Next Doctor" Written by Russell T Davies; Directed by Andy Goddard (BBC Wales)
- Doctor Who: "Planet of the Dead" Written by Russell T Davies & Gareth Roberts; Directed by James Strong (BBC Wales)
- Doctor Who: "The Waters of Mars" Written by Russell T Davies & Phil Ford; Directed by Graeme Harper (BBC Wales)
- Dollhouse: "Epitaph 1″ Story by Joss Whedon; Written by Maurissa Tancharoen & Jed Whedon; Directed by David Solomon (Mutant Enemy)
- FlashForward: "No More Good Days" Written by Brannon Braga & David S. Goyer; Directed by David S. Goyer; based on the novel by Robert J. Sawyer (ABC)


OK, no. Just ... No. People, Doctor Who had a good mini-season, with those four movies, but it wasn't that good. Meself, I'd have zapped "The Next Doctor" and probably "Planet of the Dead" off that list, and added ... maybe Torchwood: Children of Earth -- as a body of work, though, not single episodes. (Which, if I understand Hugo eligibility rules, would have shifted it into the Long Form category, but let's just pretend that it could work this way.) I'd have nominated "Children of Earth" for the first three episodes -- I think the storytelling fell off sharply in the final two, and the death of Ianto and Jack's grandchild were pretty much a steaming pile of hooey, plotwise, but the first three episodes were very good, strong episodes.

I'm undecided about including the FlashForward episode. The pilot "No More Good Days" was actually a really good execution of concept; it's not the pilot's fault that they pretty much spent the next several episodes screwing up the execution and showing just how badly Fiennes was miscast -- though, to be fair, I think the role was also badly written and misdirected throughout the early episodes, so the fault was spread around. (And I'm resigned to the fact that Eureka will never get any love from any awards, because it's a generally frothy show, so when they de-froth for an episode or two and do it well, nobody notices. But I digress.)

I don't know what to put in for the other entry, though. So I suppose one of the Doctor Who episodes might as well stay.


Best Graphic Story

Batman: Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader?
Written by Neil Gaiman; Pencilled by Andy Kubert; Inked by Scott Williams (DC Comics)

Captain Britain And MI13. Volume 3: Vampire State
Written by Paul Cornell; Pencilled by Leonard Kirk with Mike Collins, Adrian Alphona and Ardian Syaf (Marvel Comics)

Fables Vol 12: The Dark Ages
Written by Bill Willingham; Pencilled by Mark Buckingham; Art by Peter Gross & Andrew Pepoy, Michael Allred, David Hahn; Colour by Lee Loughridge & Laura Allred; Letters by Todd Klein (Vertigo Comics)

Girl Genius, Volume 9: Agatha Heterodyne and the Heirs of the Storm
Written by Kaja and Phil Foglio; Art by Phil Foglio; Colours by Cheyenne Wright (Airship Entertainment)

Schlock Mercenary: The Longshoreman of the Apocalypse
Written and Illustrated by Howard Tayler


...Yeah ... OK, that's just an odd category, that is.

Understand: I think all the stuff on this list is mostly well written and good work. But ... well, to take the objections in order:
- I must be the only person in the western world that thinks that Whatever happened to the caped crusader does not remotely deserve all the acclaim it's been getting. I read it more than once, and my reaction almost every time was "What the !@#$ is this hot mess, anyway?" The only way I was able to think of the work was as Bruce Wayne thinking himself out of the life trap, because otherwise, the weirdness doesn't even begin to work as a story.
- Captain Britain gets a pass, because I don't read Marvel, so I'll assume that the people who put it there know something that I don't.
- I love Schlock Mercenary. Really really do. But when you compare it to Girl Genius or Fables, it's just not as strong a work.

I am slightly surprised that League of Extraordinary Gentlemen didn't make the list. Understand: again, I think it's a good work, but I don't think it deserved to make the shortlist; I'm just surprised that it didn't.

If'n I'd been the Hugo graphic works guru, I think I might have come up with a list slightly different than the above. Something more like ... hmm ... well, let's try this:

- Captain Britain and MI13 (because I haven't read it, so I'm not going to knock it)
- Empowered, volume 5 (Adam Warren, artist and writer; Dark Horse) - because it was awesome like an awesome thing of aweseomeness, and the end of that volume was one of the most heartbreaking things I saw last year. It was well written, well drawn, and overall really well done. But despite the fact that it's moving into much darker territory, people keep thinking of it as this fluffy neo-not-quite-porn thing, so it's probably never going to get nominated.
- Fables, vol. 12
- Freakangels, vols 2 and 3 (Warren Ellis, writer; Paul Duffield, artist; webcomic released in print volumes by Avatar): a postapocalyptic tale of the people who accidentally caused said apocalypse, and how they're coping with the world they created.
- Girl Genius, vol. 9

(If it were a longer original list, I'd possibly have included Detective Comics, but let's keep the list the same length, for the sake of argument.)
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