Wednesday Comments – Just Bring Back Elseworlds Already!

DC’s history is littered with defunct imprints and lines. I liked Paradox Press and I’ve even got some Piranha Press stuff. I never got into Helix or Minx, but I was all in on All-Star DC Comics and DC Focus.

Most of those imprints faded away or petered out. But Elseworlds was different. With Elseworlds there was an editorial mandate involved. DC felt that the Elseworlds line had been tarnished by flooding the market with Elseworlds offerings. In an attempt to make the Elseworlds name mean something again, DC became more selective about the projects that got the green light, to the point only a few Elseworlds books have been released in the past decade, with the last one seeing the light of day almost five years ago.

But now it’s time for DC to officially bring Elseworlds back officially.

C’mon DC, you’re already publishing books like Injustice: Gods Among Us, Justice League: Gods and Monsters, Arrow Season 2.5 and The Flash Season Zero. Yes, those are books based on a video game, a movie and a couple of TV shows, but honestly those first two might as well be Elseworlds. They’ve got the whole familiar characters in different settings thing down cold.

I mean honestly, isn’t the premise of Injustice pretty similar to the set up for Kingdom Come, possibly the most revered Elseworlds ever? DC is just being stubborn by not bringing the line back. But let me go on.

Since we’re living in a post-Convergence world, we know that the Multiverse has been fully restored. So we’ve got the good ol’ Multiverse back, if not fully back in play. Plus we have the Multiverse as established by Grant Morrison in Multiversity. So clearly, with the Multiverse back, there’s a possibility for worlds to place Elseworlds stories on, it’s just a matter of exploring them.

Also, we have DC announcing the upcoming Bombshells comic, which again is effectively an Elseworlds title. It’s set on an Earth where retro female heroes are fighting the good fight in WWII. Could you come up with a more quintessential Elseworlds plot than that? It practically screams Elseworlds all it needs is the label.

But for some reason DC is reluctant to bring the imprint back.

I just don’t get it. It’s a brand with proven selling power and with two decades of history behind it, yet DC is just letting it collect dust. It seems like a waste to me.

Then again, I was a pretty big fan of Elseworlds. I remember picking up Gotham by Gaslight and being blown away. It really broadened by horizon in terms of “imaginary stories.” I picked up all of the Elseworlds Annuals and pretty much anything Green Lantern and Flash related. I really enjoyed visiting those Elseworlds.

Truth be told, I’d probably pick up DC Comics Bombshells if it were labeled as an Elseworlds. It doesn’t sound all that dissimilar from JSA: The Liberty Files. And that’s the power of a brand; it brings people in. Sadly, Elseworlds are still embargoed and it’s unlikely that I’ll be picking up Gods & Monsters, Bombshells or Injustice.

Such is life.

Well, it’s Wednesday, which means fresh new comics from your local comic shop. Go get ‘em while they’re hot!

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