I Got Your Crossover Right Here *Points to Crotch*
I hate crossovers in comics.
That’s not true. I like the small ones. A story that take place across all the Avengers’ titles or the X-Titles, or the now shitload of Green Lantern titles doesn’t have to be a bad thing, because they’re usually relevant, and sometimes move actual plot and characterization forward, plus, and this is the big one, I can follow along in the actual titles I buy month to month, and not worry about having to pick up a mini-series or a one-shot to keep up with the event. All the X-titles crossing over makes sense. If Apocalypse or, more recently, Dracula, showed up, why wouldn’t you call for help?
But, Lord, do I hate company-wide crossovers.
I hate the mini-series that use characters from book I already read and embroiling them in story in the mini-series that they could do in the actual series. The only exception is if the proper title continues on with business as usual, and the mini only ties into the event. In that case, do as many minis as you want, but don’t interrupt the story I’ve been following for years with the new stupid event.
I hate that every title, regardless of setting (say gritty street crime or galactic epic) gets tied into the same event regardless of making sense.
I hate that good writers, hell, great writers, are confined, and forced to shoe-horn in elements in to their stories either losing what makes them become great or ruining the rhythm of an on-going plot.
I hate that they hype the book for nine months yet the art team that started it can never finish it. Listen, if you can’t turn in a book that you have months and months in advance to finish, guess what? You’re a cover artist! Now and forever! Get the Mahnke’s and the Romita Jr’s and let them make a book that looks great and comes out when it’s supposed to.
“When everything’s out and collected, no one will remember it shipped late.” Fuck you. That’s a bad attitude for an industry that’s rapidly becoming life support for creative properties until someone decides to make a movie based on them
I hate that the crossover stories never deliver because they have to be drawn broad since they want everyone to buy it, and everyone means a lot of different tastes.
I hate that when it comes time to do a crossover, I have to put my pull list on hold and don’t get to go to the comic book store as much.
Here’s the thing, though, as much as I hate the company-wide crossover, I’m not telling them to stop doing them. There are enough blogs and articles about that. It’s a business and consumers vote with their wallets, and these crossovers are the industry’s summer blockbusters. If every Siege, Blackest Night, Secret Invasion, and Fear Itself is made so companies can take a chance on books like Criminal, Casanova, Iron Fist, or the insanity that was FrankenCastle, more power to them.
Matt Fraction is one of my favorite writers and I hope Fear Itself launches him into the stratosphere, but not enough, you know, to buy it. Sorry.
All I want is the company to make these giant crossovers even more disposable. Do the giant event, have Spider-Man be quippy for five panels, have Captain America be inspiring for a page, let Batman have a plan, and let Superman make a last minute save and then never mention it again.
We already do that with the crappier crossovers, when’s the last time anyone discussed Our Worlds at War? I’m asking the companies to please be mindful that the crossover make no sweeping changes, unless it’s a new book. You want a new Avengers team? Give them their own book. Don’t introduce a character in an event and give them a big supporting role in an established franchise.
I used to complain about crappy villains, I mean, what exactly was Imperiex’s powerset? He shot purple? And what were his actual weaknesses? He’s immune to Superman until he’s not? I’m done with that. Leave actual working villains alone. Don’t steal a perfectly good bad guy from his nemesis and make him everyone’s bad guy.
While I enjoyed how Osborne’s been handled since Dark Reign let’s be honest, if he looks at someone like Thor, Wolverine, or Frank Castle the wrong way, it’s over. He’s like the Joker, a huge threat against normal people and those with a code, say Batman or Spider-Man, but against someone with superpowers, a willingness to take lives, and is competent, that all adds up to a short criminal career.
Please, keep inventing giant, ominous, vague villains and threats who have “power” and are “strong.” Let them kill a couple C-listers no one’s thought about in years, or a B-Lister that you’re going to relaunch with a new person in the role. Leave the established guys to writers that are going to be working with them longer than 4 months.
Treat these events like the explosion-porn and pretty panel books that they are and let us get back to our stories, which were already in progress with no actual changes unless actually dictated by the creative team handling that book.
I want you to make money, comics. I want you to stick around forever. I want to be able to read about Batman, Invincible, and Wolverine long after the dementia sets in and I think Franklin and Valeria Richards are my grandkids that never visit, but please, make these lumbering, broad, cash cows as disposable as possible. I need them to matter less than they already do.
Here endeth the rant.
I’ll see you guys Thursday.
Posted on March 28, 2011, in Comics, History Lessons, Lists, Matt Loman and tagged comic books, comics, crossovers, DC, Marvel, Matt Loman, nerd rage, of anger and impotence, rant, ranty mcrantrant. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.