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  1. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Ellingham View Post
    Yeah. I've only met Geoff Johns once, but I can tell you the impression I got: he's as big a DC fan as I've ever met - all of it, every era. I remember someone jokingly asking him when he'd finally kill off Kyle Rayner, and he was silent for a moment and said "Actually, I'd like to write a Kyle book someday." As a fan, he was most "into" 90s DC - Wally West is his favorite DC character, and Conner Kent is like #3 on his list.

    But a writer writes what they're hired to write. So when the time came, he killed off Conner Kent - it was his job. With GL, he was tasked with bringing Hal Jordan back, and writing his solo series. That was the job. He also revamped John Stewart and incorporated aspects of the JLU show into his character. I'm not a huge fan of that mix, but it was intended as a best-of-everything deal. After Rebirth they knew they wouldn't have a solo comic for every GL character, so Johns and Peter Tomasi got DC on board with this arrangement:

    GL - Hal
    GLC - Guy and Kyle
    Justice League - John

    That way, everyone had somewhere to appear. One Year Later blew that up, though - Brad Melter wanted to reform the classic League and do a Satellite era-inspired version featuring Hal, Black Canary and Red Arrow. Tomasi, Johns and Didio asked him if he was willing to use John as well as Hal, but he didn't want an extra GL. So knowing JS was soon to have no home, Tomasi approved a Kyle Rayner solo series, to free up space for John to move over to GLC.

    It's a business, guys. These are storytellers, creators. If they write/draw fictional characters differently than you'd like, then that's...a...small...very small...teeny tiny shame.

    Seriously - to whom is that not 100% blatantly obvious?
    Also to be fair to Wally. After Barry came back and 12 issues of Flash were out, Geoff planned to have a Flash Family comic that was supposed to star Wally.

    Instead, delays and Flashpoint happened, so no Wally

  2. #122
    Fantastic Member Dr. Ellingham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will Evans View Post
    Also to be fair to Wally. After Barry came back and 12 issues of Flash were out, Geoff planned to have a Flash Family comic that was supposed to star Wally.

    Instead, delays and Flashpoint happened, so no Wally
    That's a good point. And it highlights - despite knowing Wally was going to take a backseat for awhile while he re-established Barry, he still wanted to write a Barry Allen book. Because would that opportunity come again? Maybe, maybe not. (And of course, he'd already written a great Wally run.)

    These matters are not binary; liking character A doesn't mean you have to "oppose" character B.

  3. #123
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    I think there is a lot of revisionist history going on here from people who were too young in 2004.

    Geoff Johns would not have been allowed to replace Kyle with anyone other than Hal by the DC executives at the time. Despite John and Guy’s growing popularity neither of them were deemed strong enough to hold the title at the time, so at the end of the day that left Hal Jordan, because that is what the majority of the Green Lantern fans wanted at the time. Let’s take a look.

    Historically Hal Jordan is the most prominent Green Lantern, he held the title pretty much from 1960 to 1984 give or take a year. Around 1985 they handed a declining Green Lantern comic over to John Stewart, but at the time he was not well known or popular enough to hold the title, and sales declined dramatically, so they brought in Guy Gardner in the final issues, and Guy took over as GL in the Keith Geffen Justice League reboot, a few years later.

    You can see here that John Stewart’s run was selling abysmally at the time, (I am not here to speculate as to why, other than what is stated above) just to note it was selling only slightly higher than Peter Porker and the Spectacular Spider Ham.

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...03Capital.html

    In 1990 they restarted the Green Lantern title, and despite horrible white sideburns and all, Hal was not replaced by Kyle because of comic sales, but rather DC wanting to take a new direction in the mid 90’s, so they had Hal turn insane and go on a murdering spree, which incents fans and started the whole Hal, vs Kyle drama,

    You can see here that Hal Jordan is selling above Wally West’s Flash, Wonder Woman and Green Arrow,

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...04Diamond.html

    In 1992, John Stewart received his own title entitled Green Lantern Mosaic, and although it got good praise, it only sold 18 issues before getting cancelled. You can see that it is selling way below the Green Lantern title in sales, down with Wonder Woman and Zatanna, which sadly can be inferred to reflect the lack of diversity in DC readership at the time.

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...08Diamond.html

    In 1994 Kyle took over as Green Lantern, and the character was a success, he held the comic down for 10 years before sales started to sag. You can see here near the end of the run in 2004, sales for Kyle started to drop.

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...4/2004-03.html

    So in the coming months they toyed with bringing Hal Jordan back with the Green Lantern Rebirth mini series, and Green Lantern sales went through the roof.

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...4/2004-10.html

    In May of 2005, they brought Hal back with Green Lantern issue 1, and sales skyrocketed to an historic unprecedented level. Green Lantern for the first time in recorded history was the number 1 comic, ahead of the X men and Spiderman titles, which was extremely hard for any DC title to do outside of Batman.

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...5/2005-05.html

    So despite my love for all the GL family, that is why it could not have been anyone other than Hal for Geoff Johns.

  4. #124
    Unstoppable Member KC's Avatar
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    I would say no. Johns built his run around Hal. Hal's time as Parallax and his relationship with the GL Corps, his friendships and his unique rivalry with Sinestro are all key to how Johns built his run. If any other Lantern was used Johns run would have been drastically different and I am not sure Johns would have captured the same success as he did with Hal.

  5. #125
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The no face guy View Post
    I think there is a lot of revisionist history going on here from people who were too young in 2004.

    Geoff Johns would not have been allowed to replace Kyle with anyone other than Hal by the DC executives at the time. Despite John and Guy’s growing popularity neither of them were deemed strong enough to hold the title at the time, so at the end of the day that left Hal Jordan, because that is what the majority of the Green Lantern fans wanted at the time. Let’s take a look.

    Historically Hal Jordan is the most prominent Green Lantern, he held the title pretty much from 1960 to 1984 give or take a year. Around 1985 they handed a declining Green Lantern comic over to John Stewart, but at the time he was not well known or popular enough to hold the title, and sales declined dramatically, so they brought in Guy Gardner in the final issues, and Guy took over as GL in the Keith Geffen Justice League reboot, a few years later.

    You can see here that John Stewart’s run was selling abysmally at the time, (I am not here to speculate as to why, other than what is stated above) just to note it was selling only slightly higher than Peter Porker and the Spectacular Spider Ham.

    https://www.comichron.com/monthlycom...03Capital.html

    .

    My only addendum to this is that they didn't really 'hand the book over to John'. They handed the RING to John... but Hal never went anywhere. it was still HIS book. The story changed from being a Galactic guardian.... to how can he live his life sitting on the bench... but he never really left. John had the book about 10 issues before Hal came back as primary ringslinger, and Hal was missing for about 2 of those if i recall correctly. And there were even 2 other issues where JOHN wasn't in it and it was just powerless Hal solving some mystery.

    And yeah, those issues were pretty bad, (although the last 2 or 3 with the crisis tie-ins and Hal getting his ring back are possibly my favorite GL issues of all time. )

  6. #126
    Fantastic Member The no face guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    My only addendum to this is that they didn't really 'hand the book over to John'. They handed the RING to John... but Hal never went anywhere. it was still HIS book. The story changed from being a Galactic guardian.... to how can he live his life sitting on the bench... but he never really left. John had the book about 10 issues before Hal came back as primary ringslinger, and Hal was missing for about 2 of those if i recall correctly. And there were even 2 other issues where JOHN wasn't in it and it was just powerless Hal solving some mystery.

    And yeah, those issues were pretty bad, (although the last 2 or 3 with the crisis tie-ins and Hal getting his ring back are possibly my favorite GL issues of all time. )
    Point taken, I do feel for John Stewart fans though, (as I'm sure you do as well) and in general fans of black american superheroes. Today there is a big gap between superheroes in multimedia, and the comic books themselves. Yes they had a brief Black Lightning mini series a few years ago, but Black Lightning is popular enough on Netfliks that its into three seasons, your going to tell me they put a Metal Men, and Freedom Fighters series out there, but you can't have a Black Lightning comic book? I don't buy that.


    If psychological familiarity theory holds anyone credence, (children are attracted to people or characters that resemble them) than black superheros are (less so now) at a disadvantage, so DC should be doing more to gets those heroes exposed in communities, and put more money behind them. Keep the Terrifics going don't just cancel it after a few issues, get a John Stewart comic out there, get a STEEL comic out there. I realize it's not all on them, as Warner Brothers does next to nothing to put money back into the industry that is make them millions of dollars hand over fist, but a choice between the a Black Lightning comic, and a Freedom Fighters/Metal Men comic shouldn't be that hard to make. (Nothing against Freedom Fighters there a cool team)

  7. #127
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The no face guy View Post
    If psychological familiarity theory holds anyone credence, (children are attracted to people or characters that resemble them) than black superheros are (less so now) at a disadvantage, so DC should be doing more to gets those heroes exposed in communities, and put more money behind them. Keep the Terrifics going don't just cancel it after a few issues, get a John Stewart comic out there, get a STEEL comic out there. I realize it's not all on them, as Warner Brothers does next to nothing to put money back into the industry that is make them millions of dollars hand over fist, but a choice between the a Black Lightning comic, and a Freedom Fighters/Metal Men comic shouldn't be that hard to make. (Nothing against Freedom Fighters there a cool team)

    I'm actually not a big fan of those theories. I'm not a fan of segregating the fan base, based on race. Here are the black characters for the black fans... here are the latino characters for the Latino fans... here are the gay characters for the gay fans... Girls don't like Thor, here's a girl thor! That's all better now.

    In the 'old' days before forced diversity... Characters like Spider-man and Batman and Superman appealed to all fans of all races and lifestyles. People looked deeper at the characters and found things that they identified with. Some liked the costumes, some related to the outsider aspect, some related to the immigration story... different people connected with different aspects. But they were still fans. It wasn't 'he doesn't look like me, so i'm not interested'. There are POC fans who still love the classic iconic characters to this day... even after more POC characters have been created. /minirant.


    My point about Hal and John usually gets brought up whenever people treat Hal like he was disposable and that the GL mythology was always built on the idea of 'out with the old and in with the new...' and my point is that even when his ring moved on for those 10 issues or so, the story was still his. The transfer of power and the quest to get it back was always a part of that story arc. It wasn't just ditching Hal because he as boring and they wanted something new.

  8. #128
    Fantastic Member The no face guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    I'm actually not a big fan of those theories. I'm not a fan of segregating the fan base, based on race. Here are the black characters for the black fans... here are the latino characters for the Latino fans... here are the gay characters for the gay fans... Girls don't like Thor, here's a girl thor! That's all better now.

    In the 'old' days before forced diversity... Characters like Spider-man and Batman and Superman appealed to all fans of all races and lifestyles. People looked deeper at the characters and found things that they identified with. Some liked the costumes, some related to the outsider aspect, some related to the immigration story... different people connected with different aspects. But they were still fans. It wasn't 'he doesn't look like me, so i'm not interested'. There are POC fans who still love the classic iconic characters to this day... even after more POC characters have been created. /minirant.


    My point about Hal and John usually gets brought up whenever people treat Hal like he was disposable and that the GL mythology was always built on the idea of 'out with the old and in with the new...' and my point is that even when his ring moved on for those 10 issues or so, the story was still his. The transfer of power and the quest to get it back was always a part of that story arc. It wasn't just ditching Hal because he as boring and they wanted something new.
    That's okay, I wasn't trying to push politics, I respect your viewpoint, and understand where your coming from, I was alienated by Marvel comics when they replaced Wolverine and Hawkeye for diversity, but overall, I shall politely disagree. I think a young black 9 year old kid, is going to be more attracted to a hero that resembles him, than yet another white hero. I think one of the reasons Spiderman sells is because he could be anyone under that mask, so I'm all in for giving a strong push to heroes like Black Lightning, though I am generally opposed to replacing peoples favourite heroes for any other reason than sales, because it's a painful experience for the fans who love a hero to see him cast aside.

    Thus at the end of the day, it's all about the bottom line $. If a character sells, they will put him front and center, Hal sells, Hal has sold for over 45 years, and for now, that is why he's on the cover of the Green Lantern.

  9. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    I'm actually not a big fan of those theories. I'm not a fan of segregating the fan base, based on race. Here are the black characters for the black fans... here are the latino characters for the Latino fans... here are the gay characters for the gay fans... Girls don't like Thor, here's a girl thor! That's all better now.
    The problem is also that these demographics are probably not big enough to carry a book.
    A book needs to be appealing for fans of all demographics to be successful.

    Quote Originally Posted by The no face guy View Post
    Point taken, I do feel for John Stewart fans though, (as I'm sure you do as well) and in general fans of black american superheroes. Today there is a big gap between superheroes in multimedia, and the comic books themselves. Yes they had a brief Black Lightning mini series a few years ago, but Black Lightning is popular enough on Netfliks that its into three seasons, your going to tell me they put a Metal Men, and Freedom Fighters series out there, but you can't have a Black Lightning comic book? I don't buy that.
    Success in other media doesn't really translate to comics sales, at least not on the long run. Black Panther was a massive success on the big screen, but the sales of his comic have for the past years nor been that impressive, they were usually just around 20K, which is kind of the minimum a book needs to keep going.
    And in the last month before corona, the sales dipped even down to roughly 15K, which is in the cancellation range.

  10. #130
    ...of the Black Priests Midnight_v's Avatar
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    Success in other media doesn't really translate to comics sales, at least not on the long run. Black Panther was a massive success on the big screen, but the sales of his comic have for the past years nor been that impressive, they were usually just around 20K, which is kind of the minimum a book needs to keep going.
    And in the last month before corona, the sales dipped even down to roughly 15K, which is in the cancellation range.
    Yeeeaaahhh, but if the black panther thread be believed it did poorly in SPITE of the movie being good because an author didn't grasp the mythos well... so. You know

    Also... the avengers got insurmountably popular but, it was at the same time as marvels ANAD... so it was "These are not the Avengers you're looking for"


    That being said you know...

    Writing GL stories for anyone but yourself seems like a miserable endeavor.

    If I have a run in mind better than anything DC's put out in the last 15 years, but its a green lantern story... and I want to write that story about *insert the green lantern you like the least*

    Man the outrage and angst... its like... not for doing poorly but inversely for DOING WELL.

    Not sure how to fix that.
    Last edited by Midnight_v; 05-20-2020 at 03:03 AM.
    My priority is enjoying and supporting stories of timeless heroism and conflict.
    Everything else is irrelevant.

  11. #131
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    Quote Originally Posted by Midnight_v View Post
    Yeeeaaahhh, but if the black panther thread be believed it did poorly in SPITE of the movie being good because an author didn't grasp the mythos well... so. You know
    But you will also find a lot of other examples, where the comics don't sell that well, like most of the other CW shows or the Marvel Netflix shows.

    The general trend is that only the characters from these shows that sell comics, are the ones that were successfully selling before comics before the show (Flash, Dare Devil, Punisher...), the ones who didn't might have seen a small spike in popularity, but no lasting success.

  12. #132
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    With all due respect, I think we all must know we're not posting a fully accurate picture of sales when we're posting only Direct Market figures for a book that came out in 1985. If we go by that, it looks like Green Lantern outsold Action Comics and Detective Comics. There are a lot of factors to consider there.

    Regarding Mosaic (I did not look at the sales figures for that), while I like that comic, I wouldn't be surprised if many people found the artwork instantly repelling. I've personally found that it's something that has to grow on you after a while, but even now, I have mixed feelings about it. I think it was great for that particular book and story, but at the same time, I don't think it's particularly aesthetic in general.

    I believe white people (and others) will generally watch black superheroes if the black heroes are cool and in good fiction, and if you put it in front of them. They watched and liked Into the Spider-Verse because it is actually a good film. They did the same thing with Black Panther. Heck, I will admit the Black Panther film is good, and I am not even a fan of the character.

    The big problem with black characters in comics, and this is putting a broad subject rather succinctly, is that strong enough creativity hasn't gone into them. The characters lack mythologies, they're often side or support characters, writers like Geoff Johns or whoever don't seem to want to write or develop them, and/or they're very generic and predictable ideas (like my personal view on Black Lightning). Furthermore, oftentimes they're too much black heroes for black people, which is my general view of Milestone. Even if the creators didn't mean for that to happen, I think that was/is the perception among many, and I believe the perception exists for a good reason (note, I own quite a lot of Milestone comics and have near the complete original Static run), and not just a knee jerk reaction type of reason. That content will appeal to some, but I think many others would find it inaccessible or just wouldn't be interested, and I don't think the content was generally strong enough (kinda' like how the Black Panther movie was...or...I don't know...Boondocks) to offset that.

    Now, I'm sure there's a ton of debatable points in that small above paragraph, but it's a big subject to cover that I don't want to write too much about right now.

  13. #133
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vampire Savior View Post
    I believe white people (and others) will generally watch black superheroes if the black heroes are cool and in good fiction, and if you put it in front of them. They watched and liked Into the Spider-Verse because it is actually a good film. They did the same thing with Black Panther. Heck, I will admit the Black Panther film is good, and I am not even a fan of the character.

    The big problem with black characters in comics, and this is putting a broad subject rather succinctly, is that strong enough creativity hasn't gone into them. The characters lack mythologies, they're often side or support characters, writers like Geoff Johns or whoever don't seem to want to write or develop them, and/or they're very generic and predictable ideas (like my personal view on Black Lightning). Furthermore, oftentimes they're too much black heroes for black people, which is my general view of Milestone. Even if the creators didn't mean for that to happen, I think that was/is the perception among many, and I believe the perception exists for a good reason (note, I own quite a lot of Milestone comics and have near the complete original Static run), and not just a knee jerk reaction type of reason. That content will appeal to some, but I think many others would find it inaccessible or just wouldn't be interested, and I don't think the content was generally strong enough (kinda' like how the Black Panther movie was...or...I don't know...Boondocks) to offset that.

    Now, I'm sure there's a ton of debatable points in that small above paragraph, but it's a big subject to cover that I don't want to write too much about right now.
    I would agree with that.

    There seems a push... not just in comics, but in life in general... that you can't write without a political agenda. It's not enough to write a cool black character... it has to be a black character constantly talking about he's put down by and treated like crap by white characters. Women cant' be heroes without bragging about how they are women and women are awesome and men are dumb...

    One of my favorite characters in Marvel was always Blade. Race never really showed up in his early books. He hated vampires with a passion... and was certainly 'racist' against THEM... but the other humans? He didn't fight with them because they were white or latino or black... The humans were all stupid sheep who didn't realize what monsters were lurking in the dark.

    Now i don't have ALLLL the Blade/Tomb of Dracula books from that era... so i'm sure there was some racial tension in there somewhere.... but he was CONSTANLY at odds with Harker's vampire hunters and they bickered like children, but it's because they weren't 'serious' enough about the war... and they thought he was a psychopath. Blade was a well rounded character with awesome lines, awesome action, compelling motivation and goals..... who happened to be Black. And i was a HUGE fan of his. At least till the whole 'Daywalker' powerup happened. Now he's a bit dull.

    But that's the key. Make characters that can appeal to everyone. Don't bad mouth and insult all the white heterosexual males who pick up the book because your trying to appeal to the 'other' demographics. Don't put down one fan base to prop another.

  14. #134
    Fantastic Member The no face guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vampire Savior View Post
    With all due respect, I think we all must know we're not posting a fully accurate picture of sales when we're posting only Direct Market figures for a book that came out in 1985. If we go by that, it looks like Green Lantern outsold Action Comics and Detective Comics. There are a lot of factors to consider there.

    Regarding Mosaic (I did not look at the sales figures for that), while I like that comic, I wouldn't be surprised if many people found the artwork instantly repelling. I've personally found that it's something that has to grow on you after a while, but even now, I have mixed feelings about it. I think it was great for that particular book and story, but at the same time, I don't think it's particularly aesthetic in general.

    I believe white people (and others) will generally watch black superheroes if the black heroes are cool and in good fiction, and if you put it in front of them. They watched and liked Into the Spider-Verse because it is actually a good film. They did the same thing with Black Panther. Heck, I will admit the Black Panther film is good, and I am not even a fan of the character.

    The big problem with black characters in comics, and this is putting a broad subject rather succinctly, is that strong enough creativity hasn't gone into them. The characters lack mythologies, they're often side or support characters, writers like Geoff Johns or whoever don't seem to want to write or develop them, and/or they're very generic and predictable ideas (like my personal view on Black Lightning). Furthermore, oftentimes they're too much black heroes for black people, which is my general view of Milestone. Even if the creators didn't mean for that to happen, I think that was/is the perception among many, and I believe the perception exists for a good reason (note, I own quite a lot of Milestone comics and have near the complete original Static run), and not just a knee jerk reaction type of reason. That content will appeal to some, but I think many others would find it inaccessible or just wouldn't be interested, and I don't think the content was generally strong enough (kinda' like how the Black Panther movie was...or...I don't know...Boondocks) to offset that.

    Now, I'm sure there's a ton of debatable points in that small above paragraph, but it's a big subject to cover that I don't want to write too much about right now.
    Point taken, I did notice that about the 1985 stats afterwards, not that I think comicon is posting something inaccurate, rather that a lot of the titles are missing, the Action Comics title is probably a release month prior. At any rate, the title was cancelled within less than two years once Hal stepped aside, runs are usually cancelled because of low sales, aka Mosaic.

    In terms of the popularity of black characters, i was referring to familiarity thoery in psychology, that younger children will be drawn to heroes of similar appearance as their favourite hero, once a child starts approaching their teen years it becomes a mute point.
    I agree that there does seem to be a lack of creativity that has gone into black, or characters of African descent in DC comics, in comparison to Marvel. I can only speculate as to why that is, or why success in multimedia hasn't transfered over to comics. From a personal standpoint, I just think more needs to be done.

  15. #135
    Extraordinary Member j9ac9k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    I would agree with that.

    There seems a push... not just in comics, but in life in general... that you can't write without a political agenda. It's not enough to write a cool black character... it has to be a black character constantly talking about he's put down by and treated like crap by white characters. Women cant' be heroes without bragging about how they are women and women are awesome and men are dumb...

    One of my favorite characters in Marvel was always Blade. Race never really showed up in his early books. He hated vampires with a passion... and was certainly 'racist' against THEM... but the other humans? He didn't fight with them because they were white or latino or black... The humans were all stupid sheep who didn't realize what monsters were lurking in the dark.

    Now i don't have ALLLL the Blade/Tomb of Dracula books from that era... so i'm sure there was some racial tension in there somewhere.... but he was CONSTANLY at odds with Harker's vampire hunters and they bickered like children, but it's because they weren't 'serious' enough about the war... and they thought he was a psychopath. Blade was a well rounded character with awesome lines, awesome action, compelling motivation and goals..... who happened to be Black. And i was a HUGE fan of his. At least till the whole 'Daywalker' powerup happened. Now he's a bit dull.

    But that's the key. Make characters that can appeal to everyone. Don't bad mouth and insult all the white heterosexual males who pick up the book because your trying to appeal to the 'other' demographics. Don't put down one fan base to prop another.
    After decades of being spoon-fed tales of white exceptionalism, do you really not think there wasn't an "agenda?" Maybe you got too used to seeing straight white male saviors to not notice that "other demographics" were put down or kept down ALL THE TIME, either with terrible stereotypes, never measuring up to the white hero or simply by not being allowed to be seen at all? (and then there's the issue of co-opting another culture) The agenda of media representing culture shows itself differently now because those tales were maintaining and upholding the status quo rather than trying to upset it, but don't kid yourself that any culture's depiction of its heroes doesn't have some agenda - always has, always will. Maybe you're just noticing it now because it doesn't mesh with the storylines and the agenda to which you've become indoctrinated.
    Last edited by j9ac9k; 05-20-2020 at 07:42 PM.

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