Page 2 of 8 FirstFirst 123456 ... LastLast
Results 16 to 30 of 107
  1. #16
    Invincible Member Digifiend's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    24,057

    Default

    KGBeast. He's named after a Soviet agency. Made sense in the 80s, not any more.

    Red Star, for similar reasons, the Red in his name is a reference to Communism.

    And as mentioned, the origin of Dick Grayson needs updating - travelling circuses are almost defunct, he'd be part of something like Cirque du Soleil nowadays, maybe an expy with a Bludhaven residency?
    Appreciation Thread Indexes
    Marvel | Spider-Man | X-Men | NEW!! DC Comics | Batman | Superman | Wonder Woman

  2. #17
    Astonishing Member kjn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    4,640

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by manwhohaseverything View Post
    Superman, the character is a literal strongman from space. How are you gonna change that up without changing some aspects of the concept ? His whole shtick is a strongman fighting for the weak like a modern day gladiator.
    As said above dick grayson robin.
    Superman is relatively easy to update in an origin story today: just have him meet and be inspired by a pro (or semi-pro) wrestler rather than a circus strongman.
    «Speaking generally, it is because of the desire of the tragic poets for the marvellous that so varied and inconsistent an account of Medea has been given out» (Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History [4.56.1])

  3. #18
    Mighty Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    1,734

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kjn View Post
    Superman is relatively easy to update in an origin story today: just have him meet and be inspired by a pro (or semi-pro) wrestler rather than a circus strongman.
    That in itself is starting to lose relevancy, in comparison to the 70s-80s.

  4. #19
    Fantastic Member
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Posts
    375

    Default

    Dick Grayson is the only one I can think of. The circus origin is dated and no one has come up with a good substitute.

    Ditto on Superman and Batman's trunks being dated. There are better visual ways to show these guys are strong that don't involve giving them trunks.

  5. #20
    Standing Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    14,005

    Default

    I'm always in favour of the desires of the creators of the characters. Because it's their creation. I don't agree with all those who think that the fans own the character. The period that the creator intended for the character to be in is the period the character should be in. It doesn't matter what I like or you like--if the creator intended the character to exist in a certain time period, that's the most faithful to the designs. Any version that doesn't respect that is simply an Elseworlds and not the authentic concept.

    Pierre Bezukhov belongs in 1812 Russia. Sherlock Holmes belongs in Victorian Age London. If we respect the work of Leo Tolstoy and Arthur Conan Doyle, we should respect the work of Otto Binder and Arnold Drake.
    🇨🇦
    [Exit, pursued
    by a bear.

  6. #21
    Astonishing Member kjn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    4,640

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    I'm always in favour of the desires of the creators of the characters. Because it's their creation. I don't agree with all those who think that the fans own the character. The period that the creator intended for the character to be in is the period the character should be in. It doesn't matter what I like or you like--if the creator intended the character to exist in a certain time period, that's the most faithful to the designs. Any version that doesn't respect that is simply an Elseworlds and not the authentic concept.

    Pierre Bezukhov belongs in 1812 Russia. Sherlock Holmes belongs in Victorian Age London. If we respect the work of Leo Tolstoy and Arthur Conan Doyle, we should respect the work of Otto Binder and Arnold Drake.
    I disagree here, on several different grounds.

    First, a lot of the fictional characters were created to not act in a specific time, but to act in the "now". That the old "now" now is in the past is an artifact of time, and should not be used to motivate sticking the character in the past too. There are cases of characters who are constructed such that they are tied to a specific time or place, but among long-lasting characters I think they become less common.

    Second, in a lot of cases we hardly know anything about the intent of the creators, and more often than not the character that emerged was the result of both the original creator, their editor, any successive creators, and reader feedback. As far as I know, this was the case for both Batman and Superman. Wonder Woman is a lone and clear exception to this, but I think it's telling that Marston spoke a lot about leadership and feminism around her, but nothing about the time period she was suited for.

    Third, I think talking about ownership of fictional characters is tricky, even more so when the character is controlled by an entity far removed from the original creator (as is the case for lots of DC characters). That DC owns Superman, Wonder Woman, or Batman is a case of trademark and copyright law, I don't think they have any more moral right to their visions of the character than any reader.
    «Speaking generally, it is because of the desire of the tragic poets for the marvellous that so varied and inconsistent an account of Medea has been given out» (Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History [4.56.1])

  7. #22
    Spectacular Member ERON's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Posts
    238

    Default

    I think Captain Atom works best in a 1960s-1980s Cold War setting.

  8. #23
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    6,606

    Default

    I think these characters aren't best suited for any particular era. Superman and Batman both work just as well today in modern times as they do in the decade they were invented.

  9. #24
    Astonishing Member
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    2,096

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bored at 3:00AM View Post
    The sliding timeline of superhero comics keeps the characters and their origins fresh and relevant so that new audiences can connect with them, but there's something to be said for the idea that some characters are often better suited to specific periods of time than they are to the present day.

    This isn't to say that any of the following characters can't work in a modern setting, because there are countless stories in which they've worked just fine set in today's world. I'm simply talking about my personal preferences.

    Superman has often been knocked for being a hero that feels outdated because he harkens back to an older sensibility. I think this is one of the reasons that the Donner Superman is so fondly remembered, because it leaned into the idea by having him come from an idealized America that never really was, then skip over the tumultuous 60s and 70s, to arrive in the much more cynical and jaded America that existed in the late 1970s. Stories like Superman Smashes The Klan have also highlighted how wonderfully the character works in his original time period, in which he can more directly face the corruption and fascism he was clearly created to oppose. Again, this isn't to say you can't tell those stories now, but I think they land better if they're set in the past. Your mileage may vary.

    Batman is even more complicated, given the enormous inherited wealth the character has and that his entire shtick is extrajudicially enforcing his own justice upon the underclass. If the news suddenly broke that Elon Musk or Donald Trump Jr. were running around New York City in body armor beating up poor people and "anarchists" with the explicit approval of the NYPD, I don't think most people would view them as heroes. The more realistic you make Batman, the more morally abhorrent he becomes, particularly today. However, I think the character works like gangbusters in the 70s and 80s, during which street crime in New York was a particularly big problem, rather than the modern NYC that has largely solved street crime by making the city unlivable for anyone who isn't rich. I think you can also lean into the superhero of it all, as Batman Universe did, and sidestep the problem, but if DC is intent on taking a realistic approach to Batman, they've got to figure out how to not make him someone Fox News would love.

    Wonder Woman's origin works much better for me set in the past when women had far less social status and during a global war because it more directly connects to the characters two most compelling aspects, her feminism and her mission of peace. This isn't to say that either of these two goals have been accomplished, but the idea of a powerful female champion arriving in Man's World lacks the same oomph today after all the gains that feminism has managed to win, then it does in the early to mid 20th Century, when women had just barely been granted the right to vote and held no positions of political power.

    With The Flash, you've got so many different ones, so there's less of a problem. Jay Garrick is a man of the 40s, but I think he's been a more effective character as a mentor in the present than he ever was in his prime. While Barry Allen is very much a creation of the 1950s, I think he works just as well today. Wally West's heydays were in the 90s, but his old status quo as a celebrity superhero would work just as well today.

    The Green Lanterns are similar. I love the new wrinkle of Alan Scott as a closeted man from the 1940s. I look forward to how that gets explored, particularly how his marriages are handled (which will be pretty tricky). New Frontier proved pretty definitively in my mind that Hal Jordan works best in the era of the Space Race that spawned him, when test pilots and astronauts were the coolest human beings around. John Stewart was very much a 70s creation of a black hero born out of the good intentions of white creators. I think he's grown since then, largely thanks to the work of the late great Dwayne McDuffie, but I think the character works in any time period. Guy was very much a Reagan era hero, but loudmouthed hot heads are timeless. Kyle is, unfortunately, a very, very '90s character and I don't think anyone has managed to figure out what to do with him outside of that time.
    I think when it comes to Batman, a lot depends on where America goes politically in the next few years. So far, his sheer popularity has made him bulletproof as a brand, and beyond politics in general (notice how there are relatively fewer political discussions about Batman than there are about Superman in general). But certainly, there is a left-wing conception of the world that would render Batman as a 'toxic' character, not just because of his actions, but also because of the simple fact that he's a wealthy white male - and if American politics (and the Western world in general) lean further into this kind of left-wing politics, then Batman's dominant status as the world's most popular superhero character may well be in jeopardy (though I don't think that will necessarily affect his popularity globally). That said, politics notwithstanding, the notion of being a victim of crime and wanting revenge for it is far from dated. The iconic visual of Batman swooping in to take down a mugger is still as possible in 2020 as it was in 1940. Its not as though street crime and organized crime have been completely eradicated. And if you lean more into Batman as a 'superhero', then this isn't even a passing concern.

    With the Flash, I agree that the classic comic-book Barry Allen feels like a bit of a throwback to the 50's. But the CW Flash TV show, for instance, has demonstrated how the character can work in the 21st century, and I'm sure the upcoming film will as well.

    Wonder Woman is relevant in any era IMO, but I can understand the appeal of keeping her arrival in Man's World in the past. Of the Trinity, she's the one who's continued to maintain a proximity to her Golden Age origins, through adaptations and other works. Personally I feel its a little more stylistic than anything else, but I also feel Diana adopting an American identity and championing America kinda makes a little more sense if her first exposure to it was during WW2 as compared to today.

    As far as John Stewart goes, I kinda think of him as someone who works better in the 21st century, mainly because my vision of him is shaped by the JLU cartoon and the idea of him being a Marine. You may have a point about the original 70's version of the character.

    Superman is a tricky one. I agree that the iconography of the character is rooted in a certain vision of America from the 1930's to, say, the 1970's. But I think he's become pretty timeless and really, could work in any era. The problem with Superman is that no one can agree what the character should stand for or how much he can or should change to suit contemporary audiences. I don't think the actual setting of the stories, chronologically speaking, changes much.

  10. #25
    Spectacular Member Icefan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    178

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Digifiend View Post
    KGBeast. He's named after a Soviet agency. Made sense in the 80s, not any more.

    Red Star, for similar reasons, the Red in his name is a reference to Communism.
    Also, the Rocket Red Brigade. If they want to keep them relevant, they should go with a nationalist bent, add a splash of blue to the armor and rename them the Rocket Rus Brigade.

  11. #26
    Extraordinary Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    6,512

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Kaitou D. Kid View Post
    Dick Grayson is the only one I can think of. The circus origin is dated and no one has come up with a good substitute.
    Deadman has the same problem.

  12. #27
    Incredible Member
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    684

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bored at 3:00AM View Post
    Well, the closest we've got to people like that would be serial killers like Ted Bundy, BTK, Jeffrey Dahmer, and Paul Bernardo. Would you be okay with the FBI or the NYPD allowing Elon Musk to dress up in body armor and go after these guys using extrajudicial means that would allow any decent defense lawyer to help their clients go free?
    No but at the same time Joker is 20x worse than all those guys combined and constantly escape the police so I'm not sure what I would think. The same logic applies to all superheroes. Would you be fine with a kid in tights webbing up criminals too?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bored at 3:00AM View Post
    Most of the henchmen and street thugs that we regularly see Batman fighting are most definitely poor and are almost certainly given severe crippling injuries that they no doubt can't afford given that none of them would have health insurance. I think O'Neil's notion that Batman also helps the poor through the Wayne Foundation was a fantastic one and absolutely necessary, but it strains credulity that any billionaire would have enough money to pay for the endless array of high-tech gadgets that Batman has while also paying for all the social programs required for all the mental and physical rehabilitation of all the henchmen he's bludgeoning his way through on a daily basis.

    Again, if you're going full-tilt superhero Batman, none of these concerns really matter. It's a fantasy world that only vaguely connects with our reality. However, since various creators seem to keep wanting a more grounded realistic Batman, they've got to face up to the idea that a realistic Batman is a terrifying idea that few sane people would find even remotely heroic.
    We have seen multiple times that the henchmen are often just as sadistic and cruel as the people they work for and are rarely your sympathetic average Joe who is trying to make ends me. We do occasionally and we see Batman give some sympathies to them but the majority are straight up bad people. You also get medical treatment in prison that is usually subsidized.

    Much of Wayne's money is funneled through various companies. In recent years they've played up the importance of Lucius Fox as the guy who gets Batman his toys

    Which writers? Christopher Nolan maybe. Zack Snyder and Goyer both certainly played up the horror aspect of Batman in BvS. In Batman Year One the GCPD and the media are both against Batman. Typically Batman origins start off with him being a public menace like in Arkham Origins but eventually Gordon realizes that they need Batman to reel in the crazies in Gotham and begin a partnership with him. But I can't think of many writer who put Batman in a necessarily realistic setting besides Elseworld stories like TDKR.

  13. #28
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    10,622

    Default

    Morrison was right to lean more into the superhero aspect/adventurer aspects of Batman in his run. There may be a quote out there from him about it, but I think he said you can only do so much of Batman punching thugs and street criminals before it starts to make him look incredibly bad due to his wealth. That's why for the majority of his run, he fights OTT super crime, a cabal of sinister wealthy assholes and even corrupt cops far more than he does street crime (if any at all). It's even pointed out how the Joker doesn't give a crap about money and has flushed more money down the toiler than the Black Glove combined, and from what I recall the only bit of torture Batman engages in is against Charlie Caligula, and thankfully only when he's off his rocker (not "in character").

    They need to move Batman further and further away from the right-wing power fantasy he can unfortunately (and easily) slip into at times thanks primarily to Miller, and bring Hairy Chested Love God back. It's this 80s vision of Batman that is dated and doesn't work anymore, but I don't think the general trappings or wealth is dated outside of that take. Especially as the money is largely there as a convenient plot device. I have an easy time believing Bruce somehow has enough money to finance being Batman while using money to help Gotham's citizens less fortunate then himself because that's hardly the most insane thing about the universe he lives in. He ideally should clean up Gotham's normal corruption within a year with his wealth and Gordon's help and have normal crime rates drop off, leaving the Joker and the rest as very loud outliers.

  14. #29

    Default

    Sgt. Rock works best as a WWII character, maybe Vietnam at most. Any war after that doesn't really fit him.

    Jonah Hex is a western character. They've tried in the past to modernize him and it never works. He's best as a character of that time frame.

    Going in the opposite direction, characters like Booster Gold, Kamandi and the Legion have to be tied to the future.
    Last Read: Joker: Killer Smile

    Monthly Pull List: Action Comics, Batman/Superman, Daredevil, The Flash, Legion of Superheroes, Strange Adventures, Superman, Young Justice

  15. #30
    Standing Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    14,005

    Default

    I've been reading the early Legion stories--and while the very first story is set in the 30th century, a good many stories after that were set in the 21st century. I knew this was the case before, but I hadn't realized just how prevalent it was--such that for a long while it must have seemed this was the official time period for the Legion. Which is a huge difference--100 years in the future vs. 1000 years in the future.
    🇨🇦
    [Exit, pursued
    by a bear.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •