Wednesday Comments – Dan Didio attacks, Kevin Smith spoils, Jeff Lemire convinces, Paul Cornell entertains, Wildcats 3.0 and Allison Mosshart rocks

I’m very tired. On Monday night I went to see The Dead Weather and they completely rocked. Allison Mosshart is a rock star of the highest caliber. She’s got a state presence like no one I’ve seen. Like seriously, she made me honestly consider attempting to be a groupie. Seriously.

And now on to the column proper.

In gearing up for the 11th Annual Baltimore Comic Con I’ve been spending time listening to the DC podcasts from the San Diego Comic Con. Y’see, I plan on attending most of the DC panels in Baltimore this year and I also plan on asking questions.

Listening to the podcast recording of the various panels was interesting and insightful. I imagine it’s like actually being there, only without the stifling stench of geek and the startling sight of homemade superhero costumes. Honestly, the podcast seems like the best way to experience the con and the most cost effective way too.

I did make a few observations based on what I heard and I figured I’d share them with you.

Podcasts need spoilers – I made the mistake of listening to the Batman podcast focusing on The Widening Gyre before I read the 6th issue. That panel was spoiler-tastic. The big reveal in the six issue was spoiled more than once and it pretty much ruined whatever suspense had been built to that point. Way to go Kevin Smith!

Vertigo seems adrift – Vertigo doesn’t seem to have an identity or a flagship title at the moment. Sure Hellblazer is long running, but it doesn’t really count. Listening to the various Vertigo panels, it seems to me that they don’t really have a plan in mind for the imprint and are just throwing titles out there to see what sticks.

Dan Didio is…abrasive – I’ve been to a couple of panels that Didio’s done in Baltimore and I thought that maybe he was suffering from con-fatigue or was just having an off day. But listening to the San Diego panels confirms it; Dan Didio’s a dick. He seemed to be annoyed by fans and takes criticism way too personal. At times he sounded like he was on the verge of lashing out at people who had the courage to ask a question. And while it may be a façade, he seems to relish antagonizing fans. So while I’m sure Dan Didio loves comics, it seems like it’s the fans that he can do without.

Fanboys are indeed pitiful – Not to defend Didio, but fanboys are super lame. I swear there was a guy who asked about a connection between the Lazarus Pit and Blackest Night on three different panels. That’s three different rooms, three different times he asked about Lazarus Pits to three different panels. And it was one of the continuity nitpicking questions that only a fanboy could come up with.

Paul Cornell is darn entertaining – This guy is witty, charming and funny. And I’m not one of those Anglophiles who thinks that anything said in a British accent is elevated. Case in point, I hate Russell Brand. But Paul Cornell made me a fan just by his responses. Action Comics has been awesome, but based on his panel appearances I’m betting that “awesome” is par for Cornell’s course.

Jeff Lemire is convincing – I hated Ray Palmer’s recent special. I found it cliché in the way that it retconned and gave Ray an overly dramatic past and origin. I found the drama to be mainly manufactured. But I also listened to Lemire defend his story by saying that basically every Ray Palmer story for the past two decades dealt with the effect of Jean Loring outing Ray Palmer as The Atom. Lemire wanted to give Ray a somewhat fresh approach. And while the product has been less than satisfactory, I can fully appreciate the sentiment behind it.

Also Lemire sold me on Superboy’s solo title based on the phrase “rural superhero.”

Wildstorm’s on it’s last legs – The Wildstorm panel was possibly the most depressing one that I listened to. Listening the editors rave about Ex Machina and then promote all of the titles featuring liscensed properties just really stuck me as sad. This is the imprint that was once publishing Wildcats 3.0, Sleeper and Global Frequency and now they’re publishing video game comic books? Pull the plug already.

Thus you’ve got my roller coaster ride of emotion listening to the podcasts recorded from Comic Con panels. The thrilling highs and the dizzing lows.

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