Two Guys Talking About San Diego Comic Con

Pulse Glazer
Two Guys returns for part 1 of 2 to tackle all the Comic-Con news. Today, we’ll be tackling 5 noteworthy bits from the year’s biggest convention. What are we discussing here, Grey?

 

Grey Scherl
We’re going to be discussing quite a few things, not the least of which will be that which has my blood boiling right now, but we’ll have to get back to how DC gave the finger to any fan who has enjoyed a non-Barbara Gordon Batgirl.
Want to start with Marvel confirming their new cartoons?

 

Glazer
Sure – First off Avengers Assemble will be taking off the continuity of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. Since all of those characters are Avengers already, it’s really just streamlining who’s on the team.

Grey
And putting the production under the same roof as their other shows

 

Glazer
I can live with all of that, I suppose. I’m very happy they aren’t throwing out all of the awesome stuff from EMH. It’s one of the best Marvel cartoons ever.
I’d have it right on par with Spectacular Spider-Man for best.

 

Grey
I never watched Spectacular, but EMH is a show I can’t miss an episode of. I love it!

 

Glazer
So, what character will you miss most? Mine is Black Panther. We so rarely get a good comics version – it was great how awesome he was on television.

 

Grey
I get that they want to do try and actually tie it into Ultimate Spider-Man and any other cartoons they’re doing, but I was just getting used to it.
Black Panther was the most likable he had been in years on that show, but really, what I’ll miss the most is Secret Invasion actually done right.
it’s like, everything Bendis tried to do and failed it, and the show is doing it perfectly.

Glazer
Well, the continuity is staying so that will still have happened. True, the show is like Bendis with a great editor.
We also get a brand new Hulk show, where he’s teaming with A-Bomb, and the Reds to smash stuff.

 

Grey
Bendis needs better editors, ones who will reign him in when he gets too crazy
I’m not sure how I feel about a Hulk cartoon, because really, I always really prefer him in a side role, but the show looks like fun.

Glazer
I kind of hate A-Bomb and Red She Hulk, so it isn’t a show for me.

 

Grey
I will say that them not jettisoning the continuity to start from scratch is a big thumbs up for me.

 

Glazer
Hulk I tend to like less than Banner, too.

 

Grey
So you won’t be reading Red She-Hulk’s new ongoing book?

Glazer
I will not. I tend to like Parker more on teams.

 

Grey
I won’t either, but I’m not a Parker fan.

 

Glazer
I am – Agents of Atlas is a recent favorite.

 

Grey
I wouldn’t call that book recent anymore…. 😉

 

Glazer
Fair – a lost classic then.
So, we’re basically satisfied, if not thrilled with Assemble, and neither are all in on Hulk, right?

 

Grey
Pretty much, Hulk will definitely get a watch, but I can’t promise giving too much of a damn. Hulk’s smashing things doesn’t sound like lasting power.

 

Glazer
Fair, next news bit?

 

Grey
What else happened?
Oh!
SANDMAN
Neil Gaiman doing something that Alan Moore couldn’t even dream about and opening up a dialog to start work again on a property that defined a medium, genre, and writer to add to the mythos he created.

Glazer
I want to be more excited about this than I am. Claremont, Levitz and everyone else who tarnished their legacy by coming back to a classic title has me really nervous.
Sandman might be my favorite series ever, by the way.

 

Grey
I’m actually not a fan of Sandman, but I respect what it represents.

 

Glazer
I adore it. It’s brilliant. Brief Lives is a top 10 trade for me.

 

Grey
I also see Neil in a very different boat than Claremont or Levitz, who both returned to super hero properties that had evolved in terms of story telling from the way those creators knew how to write. They tried to return 80’s sensibilities and writing tricks to comics in the 2000’s.
Gaiman is just going to do what he wants and do it his way, and people will adore it just for that.

 

Glazer
Neil is a great, great writer, but he hasn’t been doing comics.

 

Grey
He, thankfully, will never wind up in a case like Claremont who was trying to prove to everyone that he was still the best X-Men writer while Grant Morrison was writing X-Men, and then again while Joss Whedon was doing it.

 

Glazer
I’m buying it, I hope it will be great, but I am not convinced there’s much here to support this being better than post-prime Rolling Stones.

 

Grey
I won’t be buying it, but that’s my never getting into Sandman thing. I hope that the series turns out phenomenally.
I have nothing but respect for Neil and his work, and I trust that if he wants to do something with Sandman that he has a good idea in mind.

 

Glazer
I just can’t think of anyone who’s returned this way and had it be great.

 

Grey
James Robinson’s Blackest Night issue of Starman was quite good. But that was a one shot.

Glazer
Right, though it is perhaps the best comparison in that he was a contemporary of Gaiman – those were arguably the two best series of the 90s.

 

Grey
Yup, in fact, his Shade series would probably make for a much more accurate comparison….it’s just a shame that I’m not reading it in single issues. I tried, but the pacing told me I would enjoy it much better as a collected volume.

 

Glazer
I don’t think I like Shade as a protagonist, but I too will be getting that in trade.

 

Grey
He has too strong of a personality

 

Glazer
He’s an anti-hero at best, and Robinson using those as a protagonist gets us Cry for Justice.

 

Grey
Robinson using those and DC editorial shoving too many fingers into a pie.
But we haven’t yet reached the point where I rant about their editorial misfires!

 

Glazer
Ha, let’s move on to Stephanie and Barbara then.

 

Grey
Do we have anything else to cover first? Because I’m going to get heated, and this will wind up being our last topic for today.

 

Glazer
Well, A+X is worth mentioning, no?

 

Grey
I can’t believe it’s an ongoing series.

 

Glazer
It’s Marvel team-up with Avengers and X-Men, caused by the X-Character to die at the end of AVX… who is supposedly Cyclops.

 

Grey
Marvel has definitely been promoting books with mini-series scope as ongoings lately.
It’s obviously Cyclops because obviously Wolverine is the only marketable X-Man.

 

Glazer
I really wish it were Wolverine. I could use a break from him everywhere.

 

Grey
X3 set up the pace for Scott’s future by killing him in the first five minutes and nobody noticing.

 

Glazer
Sigh – let’s not talk about that abomination.

 

Grey
As far as reading the books goes, he’s the most recognizable X-Man. He is the X-Men. But unfortunately, Marvel caters too heavily to other media and somehow that made Scott into a forgettable second banana.

 

Glazer
Since Grant, he’s easily my favorite X-Man. It also explains how Havok gets to be a major player.

 

Grey
Pulling Havok out of cosmic limbo also explains that, he’s always been a sizable X character that pretty much always has his own team.

 

Glazer
Slott and Loeb are writing A+X… one guy you love and one guy you hate. Do you read it?
I vote no.

 

Grey
I read it on an issue by issue basis based on the team up, obviously.

 

Glazer
I don’t think I’m bothering, but I will absolutely read AVX consequences, as that’s just Gillen.

 

Grey
I’m going to reevaluate a lot of these things once AvX ends, because really, all of this depends on my disposition to Marvel in the wake of it.

 

Glazer
I’m still following my favorite authors. It’s always worked out for me.

 

Grey
I do too, which is going to lead to my rant.

 

Glazer
Okay, go to talk about Batgirl now.

 

Grey
We should really talk about the Eisner’s, but I’m in favor of saving those for tomorrow with the rest of the Con wrap up.
Because, really, I want to rant now. I’ve been twitter ranting the entire time we’ve been doing this.

 

Glazer
Works for me. Vent on, my friend.

 

Grey
I am getting REALLY passive aggressive.
Alright, so let’s open with a question. Aaron? How old are you?

 

Glazer
No, I think it’s just aggressive. I’m 30.

 

Grey
Now, how old were you when you first picked up a comic?
And yeah, there’s nothing really passive about it, I want to put the industry on notice for crap like this.

 

Glazer
6-ish.

 

Grey
Alright, so 24ish years reading. When was the first time you met the Barbara Gordon Batgirl in comics. Not in a flashback or imaginary story, when was the first time you looked at her and said “That’s Batgirl”?

 

Glazer
In comics? Not until she was Oracle.  She was, however, Batgirl in the Animated Series, which I loved.

Grey
Same here, actually, if not for the cartoon I wouldn’t have even heard of Batgirl, and even with the cartoon, she was a random minor character up until the show moved to Kids WB and she became a regular for a season. That’s literally the only reason I associate her at all with the role of Batgirl.

 

However, at the same time I was reading comics and she was Oracle. The information hub for the DC Universe, the leader of the Birds of Prey, the techno-centric member of the Justice League that only Batman and Superman actually knew. My first real comic with her in it? The Killing Joke, where she took a bullet to the spine that put her in a wheelchair back in 1988 (I did Joker’s joke from the end as a monologue in a high school acting class). You’re 30, I’m 27. I was born in 1985. So, quite literally, Babs was in a wheelchair from before I learned how to read up until last September.

She is an iconic character to me, but it’s entirely as Oracle. All she has even been to a generation under the age of 30 is Oracle. We knew her as Batgirl from the cartoon, or, in some cases, from watching reruns of the Adam West Batman. There were no iconic Babs as Batgirl stories that made us crave her triumphant return, really, I imagine for a lot of people the only interest in Batgirl was that somebody take the job.

 

Despite reading Cassandra Cain’s solo book, my Batgirl became Stephanie Brown once Bryan Q. Miller started writing her solo book. It was my favorite book for the better part of two years, and it was for all the things that it did right. It built a character instead of resting on the name value of the Bat tag. We saw Steph become Batgirl, we understood why it had to be her, and we watched her grow into the role as she grew into a more well rounded person. It was perfectly characterized and the kind of book that would create fans for her instead of simply catering to the ones that existed before that. He made her an accessible character for everyone to enjoy.

Bryan confirmed on multiple occasions over the last few months that Nightwing in his upcoming Smallville arc that debuts the Bat family, would be Stephanie. Not Dick Grayson, and not even Robin or Batgirl. Stephanie Brown would be Nightwing because he wanted to write her, because she was the perfect fit, and most importantly, because he could. While DC had removed her from their core canon and the New 52 in favor of the ‘iconic’ Barbara Gordon, she could live on under the banner of Smallville.

But instead Dan Didio chose to tell us that Stephanie wasn’t as iconic as Babs, and thus wasn’t as worthy of inclusion for this. He said that only iconic Bat family members are welcome, which means Bruce, Dick, and Babs. So I guess we should all be thanking our lucky stars that Dick Grayson isn’t Robin again the New 52, since he’s obviously the only iconic Robin.

Especially since Tim Drake was never Robin any more.

 

Iconic is subjective, and it’s also a kind of status that can’t be achieved when publishers bench characters in favor of milking their older ones. This is a step in the wrong direction, and I’m going to meet it with another one.

 

#boycottBarbaraGordon

 

Glazer

Holy shit, and with that, I’m scared of Grey! I’ll go hide. See you guys when I get my courage back! #boycottBarbaraGordon.

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