View Poll Results: Which of DC's Black Characters Has the Most Potential to Achieve Trinity Status?

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  • Green Lantern (John Stewart)

    37 28.03%
  • Vixen (Mari McCabe)

    17 12.88%
  • Cyborg (Victor Stone)

    11 8.33%
  • Black Lightning/Vulcan (Jefferson Pierce)

    22 16.67%
  • Static (Virgil Hawkins)

    5 3.79%
  • Naomi (Naomi McDuffie)

    7 5.30%
  • Mr. Terrific (Michael Holt)

    6 4.55%
  • Steel (John Henry Irons)

    2 1.52%
  • Bumblebee (Karen Beecher)

    0 0%
  • Icon (Augustus Freeman IV)

    0 0%
  • Rocket (Raquel Ervin)

    0 0%
  • Amazing-Man (Any Version)

    1 0.76%
  • Aqualad (Kaldur'ahm/Jackson Hyde)

    1 0.76%
  • Other (Specify Below)

    3 2.27%
  • None

    20 15.15%
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  1. #226
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    But that has nothing to do with what you were saying. You talked about how they were new characters who got big. And they did. Decades ago. New characters showing up *today* struggle a lot more. The point of contention here is the difference in the market since the 80's, and you're not addressing that.



    The differences between mainline DC and Vertigo are many, and while many of Vertigo's classic titles are still trade sellers today, look at how the modern Vertigo imprint is doing. Again, you're using examples from decades ago, but the changes to the market make these comparisons moot.



    The quality of New Age was easily on par with most of DC's titles, and above a whole lot of them. But New Age still sold poorly. So no, it's not the quality that made a difference there, otherwise most of those books would still be going. And saying that the line failed because it was riffing Marvel doesn't stand up either when both companies have been very successful when stealing from each other, from Marvel's early days right up to the modern era.



    The quality *was* there. So was the marketing and high profile push. So yeah, I'm blaming the readers.



    And what DC books right now are on the same level as Gaiman's Sandman? Or Ennis' Preacher? These are some of the most well crafted titles the company has ever made, so what exactly is DC pushing right now that equals them? If your argument is that "new/PoC characters have to be on the level as DC's greatest and most celebrated hits to be viable" then I'm pretty sure you're just proving my point, since a lot of other books can get away with much, much lower quality and still do fine.
    The reason its a strughle is because the current rosta arent as good as previous rostas. DC failed to replace the writers of dmz, fables, preacher, watchmen etc with writers of the same quality. They had a huge string of breakout hits of new and c list properties then those writers left and the hits dried up. Modern vertigo failed because all vertigos main writers left to go to image. Thats not readers fault - thats bad management, bad contracts, bad recruitment.

    And surprise surprise those writers kept having hits with new work at Image because they were top talent while a whole new generation of DC readers are left reading 20 and 30 year old reprints of these same writers because 90% of current DC rosta cant manage a hit between them.

    Re: naoh - the same quality as most of DCs output isnt good enough to break new characters. It has to be better than most of the rest of the output - thats been proven. The bar for breaking new characters has been set - if you cant match it then youre going into the 25c box. If you cant offer better than a mediocre mid tier DC book as your alternative to a mid tier DC book then you cant complain when people say ermm.. i will take my custom elsewhere. Would you rather read new stuff by steve orlando or ennis, robert venditti or alan moore... people have made it quite clear who theyd rsther read.

    Sorry but a whole generation of DC readers were used to a lot better. Their only fault is they are used to extremely high quality work at DC.


    Even then garth Ennis still easily managed to break a new black hero at DC - 80 issues, more than 10 top selling trades, omnibus and a tv series - not hard for him to do. Thats what a proper writer does - thats their job.

    A whole generation jumped ship or just read reprints because most of the new stuff is of lesser quality. Youre the publisher- you lost all your best talent - which was stupid in the first place but its your job to replace them with equal or better and they totally failed to do it for a lot of readers.

  2. #227
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    Quote Originally Posted by iron chimp View Post

    Even then garth Ennis still easily managed to break a new black hero at DC - 80 issues, more than 10 top selling trades, omnibus and a tv series - not hard for him to do. Thats what a proper writer does - thats their job.
    Which black character was this?

  3. #228
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    I'd contest that.


    Yeah, John also looks pretty iconic. Distinct haircut, eye gimmick, and the logo helps too.

  4. #229
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    Which black character was this?
    Mothers Milk. He started the boys at DC before DC decided it wasnt appropriate for them. Obviously a large number of readers disagreed though and followed the book to dynamite.

  5. #230
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    Quote Originally Posted by iron chimp View Post
    Mothers Milk. He started the boys at DC before DC decided it wasnt appropriate for them. Obviously a large number of readers disagreed though and followed the book to dynamite.
    Mothers Milk isnt a "new black character he managed to break through" hes merely a member of a team with the story mostly focused on Billy and Simon Pegg. If you said his name to anyone befire the series came out (even comic fans) 90% would go "whio?". DC moved on because The Boys is edgy trash thats meanspirited and was getting a bit too close to shitting on the JLA. It says alot that the series revamped and toned down the book massively.

  6. #231
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetengine View Post
    Mothers Milk isnt a "new black character he managed to break through" hes merely a member of a team with the story mostly focused on Billy and Simon Pegg. If you said his name to anyone befire the series came out (even comic fans) 90% would go "whio?". DC moved on because The Boys is edgy trash thats meanspirited and was getting a bit too close to shitting on the JLA. It says alot that the series revamped and toned down the book massively.
    And yet 80s issues, 14 or however many best selling trades, omnibuses, and a tv series suggests a lot of people loved it.

    Mothers milk was a great character - he was the engine of the story stopping butcher going full.psycho and losing.

    Not for you but for many others a very enjoyable character.

  7. #232
    Astonishing Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iron chimp View Post
    And yet 80s issues, 14 or however many best selling trades, omnibuses, and a tv series suggests a lot of people loved it.

    Mothers milk was a great character - he was the engine of the story stopping butcher going full.psycho and losing.

    Not for you but for many others a very enjoyable character.
    He was not the engine stopping Butcher at all, that was Hughie. You’re severely overselling MM, he was alright but nothing special and he wasn’t a solo hero.

  8. #233
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    Quote Originally Posted by iron chimp View Post
    And yet 80s issues, 14 or however many best selling trades, omnibuses, and a tv series suggests a lot of people loved it.

    Mothers milk was a great character - he was the engine of the story stopping butcher going full.psycho and losing.

    Not for you but for many others a very enjoyable character.
    But that's a matter of brand consistency, while The Boys has it's audience and the quality is there (from what I can gleam from the tv series), you can't deny it has it's over the top mean edge that wouldn't exactly work as a story in the DC universe. also, Mother's Milk isn't exactly a "breakthrough black character", from my understanding he's a great secondary character but it's not like he's the star of the series nor a household name off the back of it either; I think that's the point jetengine is trying to make. Black Panther, Static, Miles Morales, Storm, Mother's Milk, one of these things are not like the others; remove the brands and it still doesn't quite fit. respectfully, it is a little intellectually dishonest to say Ennis "easily manage to break new black character" when Mother's Milk isn't something particularly new or exciting in the realm of black characters because by that logic DC's been breaking In new black characters everytime a token black character exists on a page. that's not to say MM merely exist and has no character agency but DC's never had an issue making a put-together negro sidekick to keep the radical loose cannon white hero from going "too far" and if that were enough this thread wouldn't exist.
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  9. #234
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    Quote Originally Posted by lemonpeace View Post
    But that's a matter of brand consistency, while The Boys has it's audience and the quality is there (from what I can gleam from the tv series), you can't deny it has it's over the top mean edge that wouldn't exactly work as a story in the DC universe. also, Mother's Milk isn't exactly a "breakthrough black character", from my understanding he's a great secondary character but it's not like he's the star of the series nor a household name off the back of it either; I think that's the point jetengine is trying to make. Black Panther, Static, Miles Morales, Storm, Mother's Milk, one of these things are not like the others; remove the brands and it still doesn't quite fit. respectfully, it is a little intellectually dishonest to say Ennis "easily manage to break new black character" when Mother's Milk isn't something particularly new or exciting in the realm of black characters because by that logic DC's been breaking In new black characters everytime a token black character exists on a page. that's not to say MM merely exist and has no character agency but DC's never had an issue making a put-together negro sidekick to keep the radical loose cannon white hero from going "too far" and if that were enough this thread wouldn't exist.
    In comics terms he is though. DC have got no one on their regular rosta able to do what he did (apart from scott synder with american vampire?) 80 issues and a TV series out of nothing stuck at dynamite without the huge corporate machine behind DC and limited budget.

    Mothers Milk was the only one who could keep butcher on leash and the only one who could provide the focus to keep everyone on track. He was pivitol to the story. Frenchman and the japanese girl were the secondary characters - i cant even remember if you found out who they were or where they came from - but that mystery and nice characterisation made you like them. However Mothers milk got full crazy origin story and was put slap bang in the middle of the story, organising everyone else. Its the relationship between him and butcher that drives the story.

    You are right the cool calm negro keeping crazy whitey in check is a trope - you see it as far back as night of the living dead (if not earlier) but that isnt actually mothers milks story. At the start it looks like it is but there is a crazy reveal to his story which i wont spoil which turns it all.upside down and helps explain why he is so laser focused on getting the job done properly.

    Easy to just dismiss character as some secondary trope without actually reading him tho!

    I dont buy branding either. Watchmen - not allowed to use DC characters because of branding - biggest seller they had. Swampthing branded mature readers and rebranded vertigo to take it out of dc - still in print today. Doom patrol the same. Preacher out of DC - tv series and still in print. Fables 150 issues and a rip off tv series. Lucifer the same. Constantine the same. Killing Joke out of canon - huge hit - so popular they had to make it canon. Dave Mckean - one of most distinctive and unusual artists ever to work in comics - 250k copies of arkham asylum sold in a year. V for vendetta - inspired whole movement and still in print. Im assuming all frank millers batman stuff was out of continuity too. Just hit after hit after hit none of which had anything to do with "the brand"

    Im sure DC heads can go back way further Sgt Rock, Warlord etc - huge runs outside the "universe" and quality books

    Meanwhile whats broke out of the DC comics universe over last 30 years - next to nothing in comparison. Big numbers of readers went for non canon new different "odd" books and its new dc readers that are keeping them in print. Old Dc readers already read them.

    Thats my opinion anyway - want a break out book - get a person in who can do the job and stick it out of continuity (or black label now?) Otherwise all you have is a palette swop of another dude going through the same motions as every other low / mid level book and market is littered with that.

    Its hokey as hell to.blame readers - when readers were used to moore morrison miller etc etc and now youre offering them orlando venditti and tynion.

    Anyway i will.leave it there as im hogging the thread.

  10. #235
    Incredible Member Vampire Savior's Avatar
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    One thing I can certainly agree with iron chimp on is the talent issue. I don't think DC has much talent to actually create a new black character totally from scratch and successfully get them over. Getting them anywhere near the trinity is almost unimaginable. This is why I go back to Naomi. Bendis is probably the only guy there with the ability, interest, and influence to do this. Fortunately, he's actually doing it and this isn't just a hypothetical!

    I cannot see anybody doing anything substantive with John Stewart, Vixen, or Black Lightning in this landscape, though the guy on that Outsiders book isn't terrible from what I've seen. The talent isn't there, the interest isn't there, the incentive isn't there. I saw DC's collective "effort" to try to get a black character over with Cyborg, and it was laughable. Thus, even when the COMPANY is trying to do this, and not just a creator taking the initiative, it is still unsuccessful

    About Naomi, though, the whole thing is completely contingent on Bendis. If his relationship with DC changes, or anything like that, that character is totally up a creek.

  11. #236
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vampire Savior View Post
    One thing I can certainly agree with iron chimp on is the talent issue. I don't think DC has much talent to actually create a new black character totally from scratch and successfully get them over. Getting them anywhere near the trinity is almost unimaginable. This is why I go back to Naomi. Bendis is probably the only guy there with the ability, interest, and influence to do this. Fortunately, he's actually doing it and this isn't just a hypothetical!

    I cannot see anybody doing anything substantive with John Stewart, Vixen, or Black Lightning in this landscape, though the guy on that Outsiders book isn't terrible from what I've seen. The talent isn't there, the interest isn't there, the incentive isn't there. I saw DC's collective "effort" to try to get a black character over with Cyborg, and it was laughable. Thus, even when the COMPANY is trying to do this, and not just a creator taking the initiative, it is still unsuccessful

    About Naomi, though, the whole thing is completely contingent on Bendis. If his relationship with DC changes, or anything like that, that character is totally up a creek.
    I agree with you.

  12. #237
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    People are overselling Naomi so much here. Bendis doesn't have the power or influence to raise up a new character with zero attachment to any known legacy to become a trinity level character. No one in comics today does. It isn't against Naomi as a character, but there is just way too much in front of her to really come close to that level of popularity. Bendis was only able to raise Miles into a well known character because he used the Spider-man name and legacy, which is arguably Marvel's most popular and well known hero identity. Unless DC and Bendis decide to make Naomi the new Wonder Woman I don't really see any path for her to become close to a trinity level character.

  13. #238
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    Quote Originally Posted by iron chimp View Post
    The reason its a strughle is because the current rosta arent as good as previous rostas. DC failed to replace the writers of dmz, fables, preacher, watchmen etc with writers of the same quality. They had a huge string of breakout hits of new and c list properties then those writers left and the hits dried up. Modern vertigo failed because all vertigos main writers left to go to image. Thats not readers fault - thats bad management, bad contracts, bad recruitment.
    So John Ridley, John Paul Leon & Jason Aaron are examples of BAD RECRUITMENT? The Oscar winning John Ridley is bad talent? Jason Aaron is bad talent? Writer of Jane Foster as Thor. John Paul Leon who was the first non black artist for Static is bad talent?

    though the guy on that Outsiders book isn't terrible from what I've seen.
    THat would be Brian Hill-who WANTS to leave and go back to Hollywood. He is also the guy who did Image's Postal.

    Its hokey as hell to.blame readers - when readers were used to moore morrison miller etc etc and now youre offering them orlando venditti and tynion.
    Don't judge them by their DC work. Like David Walker and MANY OTHERS-they can write.

    Venditti can write-see his Valiant run on Eternal Warrior.
    David Walker can write about cyborgs-see Number 13 from Dark Horse.
    Tynion has done 2 books at KaBoom starring LGBTQ males of color. Backstagers & The Woods.
    Rodney Barnes has written black males from Riley & Huey in Boondocks to Chris Rock in Every Hates Chris.

    Now you might ask why those 3 are still working at DC-look at what books they are doing. Books where getting on a shelf is NEVER an issue.
    Scott Lodbell got to 50 issues with Red Hood, Teen Titans & Nightwing-despite the hate. He couldn't get past issue 7 with Doomed.
    Venditti got past 50 issues with Hal Jordan. Damaged made it to issue 18. Both books are packing 25 cent bins in a LOT of stores in my city.
    Tynion is doing Batman books. A lack of work will NEVER be an issue with him.


    The MAIN issue with Dc is EDITORIAL. There is a REASON writers are not staying of coming to DC. Most don't have that FREEDOM. Unless it's a book outside of continuity.
    I should not have to read Huckleberry/Green Lantern of Justice League/Power Rangers to see John written DECENTLY.
    Batman White Knight has done more justice to Duke Thomas then Tom King did in Batman.

    You also have to consider this-what if the writers you really want, only want to do certain books? Books that YOU don't want.

    Leah Williams talked about her love of X-Men's Colossus-she has been trying to pitch a book on him for YEARS. X-Office not interested.
    So if you are a writer and want to do a Bumblebee book and DC says no. What do you do? In this case you pitch it to Marvel and it becomes WASP book.

  14. #239
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badou View Post
    People are overselling Naomi so much here.

    Unless DC and Bendis decide to make Naomi the new Wonder Woman I don't really see any path for her to become close to a trinity level character.
    You're probably right, but the question posed is...

    "Which of DC's Black Characters Has the Most Potential to Achieve Trinity Status?"

    What am I supposed to do, choose Vixen instead? Why would I do that? Just because she's been around doing mostly nothing since 1970-whatever?
    What I know is Bendis has created an African American character that has their own successful feature film. He's working on another African American character at DC. No one is doing anything with Vixen. Who am I going to choose based on their potential and the circumstances of right now?

  15. #240
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    Hey Mr. Terrific has his own team and he hasn’t been forced to kiss Batman’s boots yet. Also it’s a great book and my hope in humanity lingers on every month I see it hasn’t been cancelled.

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