Wednesday Comments – Toxic Aquaman & #DCJanuary

Sorry for my absence the last couple of weeks, but I took a little trip and started a new job, which has left me restructuring my schedule and struggling to find time to write. Still, I’m working through and making a go of it.

For this outing, I’m not really focusing on one thing, but rather a couple of relatively recent news items.

Toxic Aquaman

Like many people on press release mailing lists, I got the email announcement that Aquaman was the most toxic superhero, when it comes to web searches. In case you’re unaware and missed the announcement, Intel Security released a list of the top ten superheroes who, when you do an online search, lead you to sites with viruses, spamware and bots. Aquaman came in at number one.

On one hand it makes me kind of sad, because once again Aquaman is being maligned and his name continues to be synonymous with something negative. It also sucks because that almost guarantees that the next writer to land on the Aquaman title will certainly write a story that overcompensates for his “toxic” nature. It’s kind of ironic because Aquaman is one of the few heroes where ecology plays into his storylines.

But I like to look at the positive; people are searching for Aquaman. Those people making those websites toxic are using Aquaman as a lure because he attracts hits. And the fact that Aquaman will be played by Jason Momoa is certain to attract females looking for the scoop on the flick. So, yes, searching for Aquaman on the net will certainly bring about no good, but on the flipside, Arthur Curry is finally popular.

DC’s January

DC recently announced a few new books for #DCJanuary including some miniseries written by the likes of Gerry Conway, Marv Wolfman, Len Wein and Mike W. Barr featuring characters they co-created.

I think it’s great that DC is giving some props to the co-creators of Raven, Katana, Swamp Thing and Firestorm. It’s nice that DC is allowing them to shine while they’re still alive rather than just heaping praise on them after they’ve passed away. It’s a nice move.

But I’m really curious who DC thinks these books are for? Firestorm, Katana and Swamp Thing all had titles during The New 52 and all of them came to an end. While Firestorm and Katana may have a bit of buzz thanks to a couple of CW television shows, Swamp Thing’s inclusion is slightly baffling.

Also, anyone looking forward to Wein returning to Swamp Thing, Conway to Firestorm, Wolfman to Raven or Barr to Katana is firmly middle aged, as some of these creators haven’t written those characters in decades. Most of the people who read those original runs have abandoned comic books and won’t be coming back to pick up these minis. What’s more, I find it hard to believe that any of those creators will entice modern readers to pick up the books because most will consider them just old, rather than legends.

It just seems like it’s set up to fail or at least underwhelm. The current Firestorm is pretty different from the one that Conway created and the current Katana is vastly different from the one that Barr featured in Batman & the Outsiders. For the most part these creators aren’t really writing the characters they created.

Dan DiDio announced that these titles were an attempt to diversify DC’s line of comics. I’ll add my voice to those wishing that DiDio was equally committed to having some diversity among those creating the comics.

Well, that’s enough for this week. It’s Wednesday go out and pick up some fresh new comics from your local comic shop.

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