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  1. #16
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deniz Camp View Post
    I won't deny that to a casual observer there are some similarities between these characters, but they're exceptionally superficial, and anyone with the ability to appreciate any nuance should understand that. The story opportunities that they each present - in fact, the story directions that they each demand - are quite different.
    I think you and I may have vastly differing opinions on how valued "nuance" is for the comic-book-buying public.

    Cyborg is about the merging of man and machine, the isolation we each of us feel as our connectivity grows but our CONNECTIONS become fewer and ever more shallow. Blue tooth and wireless and smart phones and iPads and laptops, and we're so absorbed in this digital landscape that we neglect the human interactions that ground us, that define us. That's a perfect friction for a guy who is actually replacing his body parts with technology; his humanity withering, perhaps dead, as he becomes more machine than man? And ultimately I think technology has the potential to connect us even MORE, if it is used correctly, and I think that is a conclusion that he (Cyborg) has to come to; that's his journey. That technology can make you MORE human, if you apply it correctly.
    Wow. I would totally buy this book.

    But Steel is already at the end of that journey. There is no friction, in regards to him and technology. Technology, for Steel, has ALWAYS been a means to an end. A way to help others, to lift them up, to transform society into something better. He doesn't care about the science, and any book focusing on Steel wouldn't focus on the technology itself, or his passion for building technology, for discovering new marvels. That's the purview of guys like the Atom, or Reed Richards, or Will Magnus.The focus of a Steel story should be on what Steel DOES with that technology, how he USES it, to what greater purpose he applies it.
    Hmmm. Isn't that what Iron Man already does to a much more successful degree?

    In that sense, then, the Cyborg book is more grounded in ‘today’, the issues that face us today. And Cyborg, as a younger character, is a perfect vehicle to explore the kind of angst we should all feel about how disconnected we’ve become; studies are showing that people are having more interactions than ever, but are less satisfied than ever, because it’s all one word texts. Information is being exchanged, but not MEANING. It’s the youth that is most impacted by this phenomenon, and a younger character lends himself to this kind of angst more than an older character (like, say, John Henry).
    You write this. I buy it. Deal?

    The superficiality of the Val Zod/Steel overlap shouldn't need to be commented on; they're both black with some connection to Superman? That's pretty thin. Val Zod, from what little we have seen, is mostly going to be concerned with overcoming his agoraphobia, adjusting to the massive influx of power he's dealing with, adjusting to earth-society, and just generally learning how to be the hero that people need.
    Also, an actual Black Kryptonian Superman. To a person of color (like myself), this is not at all a small detail.


    From the perspective of a writer (and hopefully, editors), this should all be obvious and clear.
    Hah! I can almost promise you, none of this is either obvious or clear to most writers or editors. We don't live in a "post-racial" society.
    Last edited by daBronzeBomma; 06-02-2014 at 02:10 PM.

  2. #17
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    And more germane to the topic, I love Steel. I think he operates in a very specific, very unique space in the DC Genius Pantheon and I think there is a lot of mileage to get out of his story.

    Unfortunately, I've never really enjoyed actual comics featuring the character. He's very much a character I enjoy more for what he could be than what he has been, if you get my meaning. Grant Morrison gave us a fantastic version, of course, and I mildly enjoyed his sporadic use during the Kelly/Casey/Loeb/Schultz Superman era (especially under Kelly's pen). However, virtually every other appearance of the character - including the entirety of his ongoing series by Simonson and Priest - has left me cold, and quite empty. It just hasn't felt like those writers understood the heart of the character, or that any writer has fully capitalized on it.

    Sholly Fisch, I think, at least sees what's there; working in the community, as they show him doing at the end of the run (was it in Annual? I can't recall) was certainly the right spirit, if not very meaty or imaginative. Greg Pak has claimed he likes writing the character, and he has a strong history of writing comic book geniuses (He really pushed this element of Banner in the Hulk universe, and of course his pet character was Amadeus Cho), but thus far Steel has been largely lacking agency in the stories, and just by the nature of his tangential role in Superman's story, I doubt we'll get anything that really explores the character in a strong way (even Grant Morrison, in his JLA run, didn't really get to do that, so it's no slight against Pak, just a minor disappointment for a fan).

  3. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by daBronzeBomma View Post
    I think you and I may have vastly differing opinions on how valued "nuance" is for the comic-book-buying public.
    It's really hard to say, I suppose. I think perhaps for the rank and file superhero lovers it's not much of a concern, you're right, but I think most people respond well to a good story, regardless of the rest.

    That isn't to say that a Steel book is going to be massively successful just because someone 'gets it right', but there's always that chance. Loki didn't seem to have a lot going for him, until it did.



    Wow. I would totally buy this book.
    Super kind of you to say!


    Hmmm. Isn't that what Iron Man already does to a much more successful degree?
    John Henry Irons, Tony Stark and Lex Luthor all represent different points on the same axis of genius. They're all more concerned with the application of technology to changing society than they are with the science behind that technology itself. They are, in short, engineers (in nature and disposition, as they all exceed the depth and breadth of knowledge of any engineer would). But John Henry exists on one end of that axis as a profoundly empathetic individual who wants to lift everyone around him up to undreamt of heights, without thought for himself. When he was introduced, he was really said to be the spirit of Superman reincarnated, and that's accurate I think. He's that at peace with himself, with the world, and his angst is struggling to make what he sees in the world around him a reality.

    Lex Luthor, meanwhile, is chiefly concerned with himself; for him, achievement is more about the adoration and lauds that come with it than it is about actually bettering the lives of those around him. I don't think he's a monster or a sadist, but he's a narcissist and a pragmatist and his primary agenda is feeding that ego. He'll happily raise up all those around him -- but he'll always make sure he's sitting in the penthouse while the rest of the world gets the garden view mid-level rooms. He'd never allow anyone to look at him eye to eye, much less look DOWN on him (which is what makes a man who can fly such a perfect terror for him).

    Tony Stark is right there in the center. He has a massive ego, crippling emotional flaws, and is less a hero and more a guy trying to overcome his own shortcomings. Unlike Lex, he recognizes his own weaknesses and failures, and he's trying to address them, and that makes him compelling -- but it makes him compelling in a different way than Steel. He's much less concerned with the community, the greater good; he wants to help people, but he wants to look and feel good doing it and the decision between 'him' and 'them' is always going to be a difficult one for him. He is not a born hero, but he's trying his best. Even when he's at his most revolutionary, he's satisfied with minor changes (electric car), and for THAT to happen he had to be completely dismantled, soup to nuts. He's been a war profiteer for the greater part of his career.

    So no, I don't think they're the same. At all, really. There is some overlap, but as well say there is overlap between Wonder Woman and Thor.

    You write this. I buy it. Deal?
    Deal!


    Also, an actual Black Kryptonian Superman. To a person of color (like myself), this is not at all a small detail.
    But our discussion isn't about the viability of this new character, or the superiority of that character to any other. We're talking about the overlap between this character and John Henry Irons, which is very minor; the color of their skin and the symbol on their chest. From a story perspective, they couldn't be more different.

    To say that promoting one should somehow lead to a junking of the other makes no sense; there is no 'cap' on how many minority characters we have in comics. For me, personally, I'm much more interested in Steel, but I'm not going to suggest that, because Steel is a stronger and more interesting character, this new (quite derivative) character should be left on the shelf. There is room for all, if the work is strong.



    Hah! I can almost promise you, none of this is either obvious or clear to most writers or editors. We don't live in a "post-racial" society.
    I don't think anyone would argue that we do. But neither is race the only issue here, especially in fiction.

  4. #19
    Fantastic Member AwesomeUsername's Avatar
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    Jon posted this picture to his Facebook page yesterday. What a great (and fun) looking cover. I wonder if it's just a commission or some variant, part of Batman's 75th variant theme.


  5. #20
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Werewolves' Finest?

    Erm, this is still a STEEL appreciation thread, right?

    Very Spawn-esque cape here:


    Taking on the Eradicator:


    Anyone remember Steel's nemesis Angora Lapin, aka The White Rabbit (one of many with that name in comics)?

  6. #21
    Fantastic Member AwesomeUsername's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daBronzeBomma View Post
    Werewolves' Finest?

    Erm, this is still a STEEL appreciation thread, right?
    Yeah, sorry about that. Didn't know where else to post it and that was the only Bogdanove related thread. But back to it for a second, he confirmed through his FB page that this will be a Batman/Superman variant for October's issue.

  7. #22
    Astonishing Member Enigmatic Undead's Avatar
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    Last edited by Enigmatic Undead; 06-27-2014 at 04:24 AM.
    "It is wrong to assume that art needs the spectator in order to be. The film runs on without any eyes. The spectator cannot exist without it. It ensures his existence." -- James Douglas Morrison

  8. #23
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Who made up Steel's sub-supporting cast?

    John Henry Irons (hero)
    Natasha Irons (niece / sister figure)
    "Butter" Irons (grandpa / father figure)
    "Bess" Irons (grandma / mother figure)

    Angora Lapin (villain / love interest)

    Who else was a part of that world?

  9. #24
    Original CBR member Jabare's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Art School Dropout View Post



    loved Steel's design in that issue.


    any recent scans. Last comic I read with Steel was from the previous run on Suicide Squad months ago.

    I know he got hurt recently against Doomsday. Anyone got some scans or a brief synopsis?
    The J-man

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  10. #25
    Extraordinary Member Robotman's Avatar
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    Steel is playing a pretty big role in the Doomed storyline. I like the new liquid metal armor. It differentiates him from Ironman and finally explains how his mask/helmet can move with his mouth and facial expressions.

    It would be interesting if Steel and Lana became a couple after this story.

  11. #26
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    Yeah, there were some sparks/teases to that. I noticed that, it could be interesting to see.

  12. #27
    Incredible Member Black_Adam's Avatar
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    His new armour in Doomed is better but still prefer the old DCU Steel look.

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Black_Adam View Post
    His new armour in Doomed is better but still prefer the old DCU Steel look.
    Yes, me too!

  14. #29
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    Some of the previous "riveted" Steel looks were just way too close to Destro for comfort. It's a hard character to design for, I think. You don't want him to look like Iron Man or War Machine, rather. You don't want him to look like Destro too much. Too much bulk and robo-gear and he looks like Cyborg, especially with the silver. The 90s were notorious for putting the big Jim Lee cyber-gear on him. He just looked like 90s Cyborg, with a red cape and Destro's mask.

    Actually the liquid metal is my favorite look in a long time. It's uniquely his. I'd go a few steps further and use DC's stronger history of Silver Age design - this is a Superman ally, his "high tech" look should be so streamlined and cutting edge it just looks like a modern, sleek take on Space Age super-costume design, akin to Hal Jordan or Barry Allen's looks.

    Cyborg, if you look at his classic artistry from Perez and folks in the 80s, was almost so silver as to be white, so you might be better off doing a white/red iPod look with him - it'll emphasize his nature as computerized and capable of "upgrades" (and the colors compliment his skin tone pretty well, too). That leaves the pure gunmetal greys and silvers in Steel's wheelhouse - the more industrial, metal-worker, sculpture pastiche.
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  15. #30
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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