Wednesday, 8 June 2011

DC Reboot

I've been through all the stages of grief that are to be expected when such monumental news is announced. Some were stronger than other (denial lasted a while and keeps making a comeback) but I'm tentatively feeling my way to acceptance. Thank God we're not going back to year dot and that recent, brilliant characters still have a home (Damien is safe. Phew.) I can see why this is a savvy business decision. To be honest it might even make me start picking up some books (as it stands I read trades rather than comics). But I have a number of requests. Blind hopes, perhaps.

So, DC, pretty pretty please...

Don't get rid of Oracle

Too late for this, perhaps, as it seems a fully-mobile Barbara Gordon is back as Batgirl. Let's scoot right over what this means for Cass and Steph (will they never have been Batgirl in this universe? Will they even exist?) and even ignore the PC implications in getting rid of their only main character who uses a wheelchair. Instead, let's look at what this means for Babs. She was recently voted DC's most kick-ass female by DC Women Kickin Ass. If she had remained Batgirl all this time, she would have been booted out in the preliminaries. Fact is, Babs became infinitely more interesting when she emerged from a pointless and misogynistic editorial edict intended to make her a victim as someone far stronger than the perky cardboard cut out superheroine she had been before. As Oracle she became one of DC's best characters, of any gender or physical ability. Babsgirl, in comparison, is dull and uninspiring.

I'm still hoping that this cover is a fake-out. The background is an Oracle shade of green and Gail Simone's write-up about the series is slightly open to interpretation. Could this actually be the Batgirl online avatar that Grant Morrison teased? Might Babs be some sort of web-only Batgirl, with Steph or Cass still donning the suit in the real world? I will cling to that hope until DC prises it from my sad and disillusioned fingers. Also, the fact that Simone is writing this book also gives me hope - she's the writer largely responsible for why Oracle became so popular.

Don't make Damien well-adjusted

If he's not still an arrogant, stab-happy borderline psychopath I will be sorely disappointed.

Don't cock up the Birds of Prey

Initially I was put off by a man on writing duties (Duane Swiercszynski - who?) but then I remembered that some of my favourite superheroine books were written by men (Palmiotti and Gray on Power Girl, Brubaker on Catwoman) so I got over my blatant sexism. But where is the dream team of Oracle, Black Canary, Huntress and Lady Blackhawk? I'm currently fearful for the fate of the latter two.

Fix Roy Harper

He seems to have both his arms now, which I hope means he also has a daughter in tow. Being a single father was his superhero USP and I liked it. You can keep the drug addict history - I like that too. Kind of excited about seeing him, Red Hood and Starfire in a book together (although I don't like the idea of them turning the gloriously happy Starfire into a 'dark' character) If Cass Cain no longer has a home in the Batfamily, she could do worse than popping up in this book with the fellow screw-ups. Renee Montoya could have a home here too.

Actually follow through when you say that the reboot makes the DCU more diverse

So far I'm not seeing a heck of a lot of diversity, except for Cyborg in JLA and Static Shock getting a book. Oh, and Vixen in JLI. You know how you could make the DCU more diverse? If Red Robin and Superboy were totally doing it.

Bring back Zatanna's fishnets!

And not just because it means my cosplay is already out of date. DC have decided to bring about equality by giving their female characters trousers, in the world's most spectacular failure to grasp the point. The costumes aren't the problem. Wonder Woman's star-spangled knickers are no more ridiculous than Superman's red trunks over blue tights (although it seems those have gone now too). It's an iconic costume, just like Zatanna and Black Canary's fishnets. The problem is that the artists constantly draw women in provocative poses and the writers keep writing them into peril. That's what you need to address. Not Supergirl's miniskirt.

Find awesome things for the following characters to do

Power Girl, Huntress, Lady Blackhawk, Renee Montoya (who should still be The Question, please), Sasha Bordeaux, Donna Troy, Raven, Wally West (is the Flash Barry Allen? Is Kid Flash Bart? Where's Wally?!), Guy Gardner, Ravager, Roy Harper. Also, please take this opportunity to give John Stewart a personality and bring Crispus Allen back. In fact, bring Gotham Central back. Ta!

Keep Secret Six running with no changes whatsoever

I feel very strongly about this one. Obey me or lose me forever, DC.

There are a couple of things that have got me excited. The return of JLI is promising (I loved Giffen's run) and the idea of JLA Dark is far more exciting than the main JLA, as is John Constantine's return to the DCU. I'm also excited about Dick's return as Nightwing, but worried about what will have happened to his brilliant relationship with Damien.

Well done DC, you've got our attention. Now dont piss off the hundreds of thousands of fans who have put many hours and days of our life into the last 25 years of continuity. Pretty please.


  1. Don't forget that Mr. Terrific is finally getting a book as well.

    Oh, and DC definitely needs to leave Secret Six the hell alone. Gail Simone said she still had one unannounced title left, so if it's not the Six, hopefully it's something similar like the Suicide Squad.

  2. Ah yes, forgot Mr Terrific. I stand corrected. And I guess with Apollo and Midnighter on board at least the male gay ratio has gone up a bit!