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  1. #31
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    So Jonathan Kent was supposed to be "Mr. Oz", because he's not in Kansas anymore?

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Myskin View Post
    Well... Yes and no IMHO.
    A huge problem I personally have with most fan discussions (and the main reason I've phased out of forums in the latest years), especially the ones about Didio's tenure, is that somehow they all miss the point. Fans and Didio (and Jim Lee, and the powers that be) are not on the same page and it couldn't be any different, because Didio's priorities and the fans' priorities are not the same ones.

    Fans want good, compelling stories (or, if they are close-minded, the same stories they already know, just retold once again); Didio's tasks are, among the others, protecting IPs and copyrights, providing standalone stories which could serve as material for upcoming movies and so on, possibly (but not necessarily) by reaching these aims through stories which people would like to buy.

    Of course I am oversimplifying, but I hope that the point is clear - most of the discussions about stories (the endless and quite frankly boring grimness/optimism debate; the trunks/no trunks thing; criticism about continuity, costumes, convoluted decisions about secondary characters like Nightwing and so on) are somehow meaningless because fans ignore the BTS of such decisions and Didio or Lee will NEVER openly reveal them - they will simply hide corporate choices behind alleged "creative" directions and play coy. The best people can do is trying to find hints here and there and connecting the dots. Of course, this doesn't mean that the stories themselves are good or DC's decisions are flawless - it's just that sometimes the stories are bad for ENTIRELY different reasons from the ones the fans think of.

    Regarding the New52, I don't think that they the Oz thing was planned because the New52 wasn't popular: the way I see it, it is very likely that the New52 was never planned as a definitive new continuity, but rather as a temporary setting ŕ la Heroes Reborn. Maybe they didn't know how to end it yet (even if the idea of a Watchmen sequel had been on the table since Diane Nelson came on board, but maybe it was a different project which became a New52 thing only at a later time), but I am pretty sure that they had already thought about two-three possible options.

    IMHO the real reasons behind the New52 were: the Toberoff lawsuits; copyright issues in general (does anyone remember the short-lived National Comics series?); an attempt at synchronizing TV series/movies/comic books (hence NuWally); a standalone updated origin story for the JL which could be used for the upcoming DCEU and the animated movies. Everything else - the return to Superman's Golden Age roots and all of the creative decisions - are secondary to these corporate choices.

    I'd say the DCYou can be considered more of a failed event, but again: do we have all the pieces? Because let's face it: you don't reveal Superman's identity to the world if you are not already planning an upcoming reboot and you don't put an unexperienced writer like Meredith Finch on Wonder Woman if what you are aiming at is a quality relaunch (as far as I remember, they were mostly trying to keep David Finch firmly at DC). Also, Convergence had just happened and DC was probably very busy with the recent relocation to Burbank. Maybe DCYou was just a temporary thing; anyway, the Oz thing had been introduced at least one year before DCYou.
    I've heard this theory before. That it was never meant to be the permanent DCU. I have mixed views on this. There are conflicting stories about why New 52 was done in the first place. Didio says he talked to comic shop owners and they said sales were just bad and they needed a new gimmick. Other sources say that his job was threatened by WB corporate because the DC movies weren't doing as well as the Marvel movies and they wanted DC to come up with a way boost sales. Another source says the lawsuit was the reason. It could be a combination of these things. "Reboot now; undo it later" is a risky strategy. Especially considering how long they went along with it. I have to believe that on some level they had kind of hoped New 52 would catch on and they could keep it but maybe had some contingency plans in case it didn't or the lawsuit went away. Regardless, the way the transition was handled really did come across as slapdash and they just sort of banged something out as quickly as possible. Either way, New 52 as a stop gap measure until they see where all the chips would fall is as a good a theory as any other.
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  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    The market on the whole is changing, but from the looks of it Rebirth did succeed in stabilizing sales and more importantly storytelling in a way that New 52 did not and even one that Marvel doesn't seem to be able to do without the crutch of a lot of gimmicks. Again, we're almost four years out from Rebirth and while they are building toward some line Crisis over the last 16 months, it's a planned storytelling one - not one they are rushing into to salvage tanking sales. In that sense, yeah, I think you could definitely say Rebirth is a bigger success than the New 52.
    Pretty sure Bendis writing the entire line is a giant crutch of a gimmick, especially considering how marvel used him to attract sales to comics that needed the draw.

  4. #34
    Mighty Member Yoda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ssupes View Post
    Pretty sure Bendis writing the entire line is a giant crutch of a gimmick, especially considering how marvel used him to attract sales to comics that needed the draw.
    Getting A-List (or B-List because this isn't 2000's Bendis) talent to give a consistent long term planned run is a "gimmick"? I guess actually, consistent well thought out plans kinda are a gimmick in comics.

    So like are you mad the Supertitles "sold out" and don't have Scott Lobdell write his nonsense is keeping it real or something?

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by superduperman View Post
    I've heard this theory before. That it was never meant to be the permanent DCU. I have mixed views on this. There are conflicting stories about why New 52 was done in the first place. Didio says he talked to comic shop owners and they said sales were just bad and they needed a new gimmick. Other sources say that his job was threatened by WB corporate because the DC movies weren't doing as well as the Marvel movies and they wanted DC to come up with a way boost sales. Another source says the lawsuit was the reason. It could be a combination of these things. "Reboot now; undo it later" is a risky strategy. Especially considering how long they went along with it. I have to believe that on some level they had kind of hoped New 52 would catch on and they could keep it but maybe had some contingency plans in case it didn't or the lawsuit went away. Regardless, the way the transition was handled really did come across as slapdash and they just sort of banged something out as quickly as possible. Either way, New 52 as a stop gap measure until they see where all the chips would fall is as a good a theory as any other.
    It may be risky (on the other hand, the endless reboot/deboot is something that Superman had been experiencing for some years up to that point, and the entire DCU to a degree), but I think that our - the readers' - perspective is somehow flawed because our attention is focused on the comic books themselves. However, I doubt that WB's strategy had the comics as their top priority. For example, if one of their purposes was getting some standalone stories which could work as the basis for DCEU, tinkering with the characters' continuity becomes relatively acceptable, because the books are just a means to reach a more important objective.

    I had always suspected that at one point they had some ideas for a Superman relaunch which could work as the basis for the upcoming Man of Steel movie, and - more specifically - there were 2-3 elements which constantly reappeared in at least a couple of different continuities, as if they were specific plot points which they wanted to keep to introduce them in the movie, but they weren't really sure how. Please note that in this case I have literally zero confirmation of what I am thinking about: it is entirely a speculation of mine and I could be wrong. However, to me it always sounded funny how Morrison's opening Action Comics arc seemed like a merger of Johns' Secret Origins and his most popular storyline, the Brainiac one. There are a lot elements which had been introduced into continuity by Johns and Morrison reprises with very few modifications. For example: Luthor working for the army, Sam Lane as a key character in Superman's origin, John Corben as a soldier, Metallo as Lois Lane's ex boyfriend, the postponed revelation of Brainiac's true face, etc. Yes, there are obvious differences and some unique elements (Superman in t-shirt and jeans which probably came from one of the planned All-Star Superman specials), but most Morrisonisms are to be found in the following arcs. This specific story seems relatively "normal" for Morrison's standards and - if I remember it correctly - it was at this time that some writers, including Morrison, were pitching some possible plots for the movie (I vaguely remember an interview of Morrison's where he openly mentions both Brainiac and Metallo as the villains). Also: it's the ONLY storyline where Morrison uses Superman's classic villains (Mxyzptlk appears in the following issues, but not as an antagonist). All of the other villains in Morrison's run are original creations or complete reinventions of forgotten Z-list criminals.

    But again - it is just a speculation of mine. Anyway, the synchronicity TV series/movies/books is way clearer for the JL, or the Flash, or even Wonder Woman to a degree.

    In general, I think that the closest they came to establishing the New52 as a definitive version of the new continuity was in a planned year-long weekly series by Greg Pak and Max Landis focused on a retelling of the Death of Superman story. I don't know how close the went with it (not very much, I suspect). But they preferred to leave the Death story as a vague, unexplained detail from Superman's past (and the same could be said about several New52 stories/series which could have worked both in the old and the new continuity).
    Last edited by Myskin; 08-27-2019 at 02:17 PM.
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  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    Getting A-List (or B-List because this isn't 2000's Bendis) talent to give a consistent long term planned run is a "gimmick"? I guess actually, consistent well thought out plans kinda are a gimmick in comics.
    God knows it was something the new 52 needed, Grant morrison alone on action comics wasn't going to carry sales and though andy Diggle was thrown of of action comics later, the fact that he could plan to do what he wanted that would have heavily affected the other books until he was told otherwise despite already writing two issues shows the level of mismanagement.
    And I'm sorry but despite what this forum says about bendis, to say he's b list writer is just incorrect.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    So like are you mad the Supertitles "sold out" and don't have Scott Lobdell write his nonsense is keeping it real or something?
    I've seen plenty of superman issues get sold out and need reprints, from before rebirth to even now, it's nothing new. I even remember when justice league #12 needed reprints. Seems the only ones who are mad around here is those giving a snarky tone.

    Plus I'm sure I've never said Lobdell's writing was the greatest, it was just funny when his issues constantly triggered some folk for no good reason. Not that his writing shouldn't have been as noteworthy to do as such.

  7. #37
    Mighty Member Yoda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ssupes View Post
    God knows it was something the new 52 needed, Grant morrison alone on action comics wasn't going to carry sales and though andy Diggle was thrown of of action comics later, the fact that he could plan to do what he wanted that would have heavily affected the other books until he was told otherwise despite already writing two issues shows the level of mismanagement.
    And I'm sorry but despite what this forum says about bendis, to say he's b list writer is just incorrect.
    Bendis' name doesn't equal sales anymore. Like at all. His marvel titles were selling in the low 30's or 20's before he came over to DC. His last event, Civil War II was garbage and kinda panned. You seemed to be mad that he's popular and writing a solid run? His last years at Marvel show that clearly. I grant you he was promoted pretty heavily coming in. But he asked for the Superman books because he wanted to write them. It's not a "sales gimmick" to bring on a new creative team. Relaunching Superman #1 is gimmicky, I'll grant you that. But overall they wanted a new voice for the character and stability post-New 52.

    A sales gimmick isn't getting a consistent solid creative team. That's like the opposite of a sales gimmick and is generally good business practices that build long sustained sales. A sales gimmick is constant cross overs, variant covers, etc.

    I've seen plenty of superman issues get sold out and need reprints, from before rebirth to even now, it's nothing new. I even remember when justice league #12 needed reprints. Seems the only ones who are mad around here is those giving a snarky tone.

    Plus I'm sure I've never said Lobdell's writing was the greatest, it was just funny when his issues constantly triggered some folk for no good reason. Not that his writing shouldn't have been as noteworthy to do as such.
    That's.... not what "sold out" means in this context.
    Last edited by Yoda; 08-27-2019 at 02:48 PM.

  8. #38
    Ultimate Member Last Son of Krypton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Myskin View Post
    It may be risky (on the other hand, the endless reboot/deboot is something that Superman had been experiencing for some years up to that point, and the entire DCU to a degree), but I think that our - the readers' - perspective is somehow flawed because our attention is focused on the comic books themselves. However, I doubt that WB's strategy had the comics as their top priority. For example, if one of their purposes was getting some standalone stories which could work as the basis for DCEU, tinkering with the characters' continuity becomes relatively acceptable, because the books are just a means to reach a more important objective.

    I had always suspected that at one point they had some ideas for a Superman relaunch which could work as the basis for the upcoming Man of Steel movie, and - more specifically - there were 2-3 elements which constantly reappeared in at least a couple of different continuities, as if they were specific plot points which they wanted to keep to introduce them in the movie, but they weren't really sure how. Please note that in this case I have literally zero confirmation of what I am thinking about: it is entirely a speculation of mine and I could be wrong. However, to me it always sounded funny how Morrison's opening Action Comics arc seemed like a merger of Johns' Secret Origins and his most popular storyline, the Brainiac one. There are a lot elements which had been introduced into continuity by Johns and Morrison reprises with very few modifications. For example: Luthor working for the army, Sam Lane as a key character in Superman's origin, John Corben as a soldier, Metallo as Lois Lane's ex boyfriend, the postponed revelation of Brainiac's true face, etc. Yes, there are obvious differences and some unique elements (Superman in t-shirt and jeans which probably came from one of the planned All-Star Superman specials), but most Morrisonisms are to be found in the following arcs. This specific story seems relatively "normal" for Morrison's standards and - if I remember it correctly - it was at this time that some writers, including Morrison, were pitching some possible plots for the movie (I vaguely remember an interview of Morrison's where he openly mentions both Brainiac and Metallo as the villains). Also: it's the ONLY storyline where Morrison uses Superman's classic villains (Mxyzptlk appears in the following issues, but not as an antagonist). All of the other villains in Morrison's run are original creations or complete reinventions of forgotten Z-list criminals.

    But again - it is just a speculation of mine. Anyway, the synchronicity TV series/movies/books is way clearer for the JL, or the Flash, or even Wonder Woman to a degree.

    In general, I think that the closest they came to establishing the New52 as a definitive version of the new continuity was in a planned year-long weekly series by Greg Pak and Max Landis focused on a retelling of the Death of Superman story. I don't know how close the went with it (not very much, I suspect). But they preferred to leave the Death story as a vague, unexplained detail from Superman's past (and the same could be said about several New52 stories/series which could have worked both in the old and the new continuity).
    Man of Steel was already filming in Aug. 2011 before the new52 happened. Goyer wrote the script already in 2010, I think. So, I doubt Morrison origin served as a pitch for anything back then. But some of us saw the Rebirth's Tomasi run and Supersons as blatant pitches for animation due to their cartoonish style. And it was recently revealed that a Rebirth inspired Superman Family cartoon was pitched but rejected by a Network. If I have to bet, it was the rejection of the cartoon pitch that led to the shake up under Bendis.
    Last edited by Last Son of Krypton; 08-27-2019 at 03:18 PM.

  9. #39
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    What is a gimmick (and not exclusive to Bendis's work) is this new Card Stock Variant stuff. That definitely provided a significant boost in sales last month.
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  10. #40
    Mighty Member Yoda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam View Post
    What is a gimmick (and not exclusive to Bendis's work) is this new Card Stock Variant stuff. That definitely provided a significant boost in sales last month.
    "B" covers are definitely a gimmick. It's questionable whether the card stock work the way they are intended, since they are more expensive so possible cause less people to buy them and actually resulted in the sales charts being all messed up. You definitely can see sales differences in the books that don't have a B cover or those that have a hot artist on them. Artgerm's covers for Supergirl and Catwoman definitely juice the sales for those two books and Super Sons suffered from not having a B cover, which probably would have boosted sales a bit.

    Marvel is on a whole nother level though, Black Cat #1 had 45 variant covers and a lot of them are tiered so shops need to order 25, 50, 100 copies to get one copy of a cover. Immortal Hulk recently has had like 5+ covers per issue. So that seriously skews sales.

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    Getting A-List (or B-List because this isn't 2000's Bendis) talent to give a consistent long term planned run is a "gimmick"? I guess actually, consistent well thought out plans kinda are a gimmick in comics.

    So like are you mad the Supertitles "sold out" and don't have Scott Lobdell write his nonsense is keeping it real or something?
    I don’t even always care for what Bendis has done but even I can acknowledge that there is nothing “gimmick” about hiring a writer like him with deep creative connections to shape the Superman line. I don’t have to love all he is doing to recognize that hiring him was smart creative strategy and not a gimmick.

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    Bendis' name doesn't equal sales anymore. Like at all. His marvel titles were selling in the low 30's or 20's before he came over to DC. His last event, Civil War II was garbage and kinda panned. You seemed to be mad that he's popular and writing a solid run? His last years at Marvel show that clearly. I grant you he was promoted pretty heavily coming in. But he asked for the Superman books because he wanted to write them. It's not a "sales gimmick" to bring on a new creative team. Relaunching Superman #1 is gimmicky, I'll grant you that. But overall they wanted a new voice for the character and stability post-New 52.
    And yes I'm pretty sure bringing in a new creative team and advertising as such is a gimmick that is often brought in to bring the numbers back up, especially considering the numbers of the super line at the time as evidenced when supersons was canceled shortly before his arrival.
    This is the oldest gimmiock there is, not that it's a bad one just a gimmick none the less.

    I mean there is a reason greg rucka was brought on to do the lois lane miniseries and it wasn't because of her great history of sales.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    A sales gimmick isn't getting a consistent solid creative team. That's like the opposite of a sales gimmick and is generally good business practices that build long sustained sales. A sales gimmick is constant cross overs, variant covers, etc.
    Pretty sure variant covers are the norm nowadays even for regular issues, and while crossovers have been dialled back (the one lesson that was needed to be learned after the new 52) they still exist even if they are just smaller ones cross different comics within the line.

    And in pointing out gimmicks it seems I forgot the biggest one of them all, bringing in a kid.
    Last edited by Kuwagaton; 08-27-2019 at 04:02 PM. Reason: Yes, let's stop the analysis

  13. #43
    Astonishing Member Vordan's Avatar
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    I have no idea what “gimmick” even means anymore. I’ve always considered gimmicks to be superficial changes done solely for the purpose of raising sales. A new creative team isn’t a gimmick by my definition. Supes getting a new costume would be though.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    I have no idea what “gimmick” even means anymore. I’ve always considered gimmicks to be superficial changes done solely for the purpose of raising sales. A new creative team isn’t a gimmick by my definition. Supes getting a new costume would be though.
    LOL, I had to step back and think about it myself. So, let's consult the dictionary.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dictionary.com
    noun
    an ingenious or novel device, scheme, or stratagem, especially one designed to attract attention or increase appeal.
    a concealed, usually devious aspect or feature of something, as a plan or deal:
    An offer that good must have a gimmick in it somewhere.
    a hidden mechanical device by which a magician works a trick or a gambler controls a game of chance.
    Electronics Informal. a capacitor formed by intertwining two insulated wires.
    verb (used with object)
    to equip or embellish with unnecessary features, especially in order to increase salability, acceptance, etc. (often followed by up):
    to gimmick up a sports car with chrome and racing stripes.
    verb (used without object)
    to resort to gimmickry, especially habitually.
    I guess if you're hiring a creator because his name alone brings in fans and you are not at all concerned about the quality and content of his writing, it could be a gimmick. Like, for instance, if it were 2004 and you pulled in a high Ozzy Osbourne and had him write an issue of Superman, that would be a gimmick.

    But most of the time, I think people follow creators because they like them, though at the same time the big name creators have their own brand recognition so people will buy the books under the assumption (or blind belief) that it will be good.

  15. #45
    Mighty Member Yoda's Avatar
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    Yeah, new costumes like the electric blue and red Superman (sorry Vordan), tiered variants or "special covers," getting J.J. Abbrams to "write" a Spider-Man series. Sudden status quo shifts can be gimmicky, but even then I think that depends on whether they are intended to stick around as a new thought out direction or just done haphazardly to boost sales on the controversy.

    I can see the argument that Jon could be considered a gimmick, sudden aged kid is a trope after all, but I don't think that that really flies given his continued existence, use in and outside the DCU (people ignore he has the Ink book, Young Justice, CWverse maybe). I think something like Chris Kent fits that bill a lot more in the mold of "Cousin Oliver." (I'm dating myself). We're almost 4 years into Jon's debut and he'll be a main character in his own book again in a month. Not really a gimmick.

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