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RIP DC Universe

If you haven't been living under a rock, you know that DC Comics is going to reboot every one of its comics on Wednesday. Say farewell to everything since the 1930s and allegedly this will be a jumping-in point for new comics readers.

Personally I think they'd do better to bring in new readers if they stopped having a crisis of infinite crossovers, but nobody asked me. Instead, they're trying again, and it's a big gamble for them, killing an entire universe.

Among the new lines:

Action Comics, written by Grant Morrison, art by Rags Morales. They get to take on the new Superman.

Batman, written by Scott Snyder, art by Greg Capullo. Guess who they're writing?

Catwoman, written by Judd Winick, art by Guillem March. Of course, she's still in the skin-tight vinyl, but I wasn't expecting miracles.

Green Lantern, written by Geoff Johns, art by Doug Mahnke and Christian Alamy. Rumor has it they might be the exception to the reboot, or maybe they're just continuing what they were up to in the last few issues.

Swamp Thing, written by Scott Snyder, art by Yanick Paquette. No one knows if it's just going to be a riff off Alan Moore's run or a totally new look.

• Also-rans: JLA, Superman (not to be confused with Action Comics, thanks for not confusing us, guys), Batgirl, Aquaman and Batwoman. Wonder Woman is written by Brian Azzarello and gets to keep her pants on. So to speak.

One local comic shop is handling it in style: a funeral for Classic DC combined with a launch party for the New DC. The final issue of Flashpoint will come out the same night as the new Justice League, issue 1, with Geoff Johns and Jim Lee.

So you can drop by Hometown Comics in downtown Edwardsville from 9 p.m. Tuesday to 12:30 a.m. Wednesday, and meet the professional "St. Louis Superman" in his classic costume, pick up freebies and take advantage of a major DC sale: $5 off any DC graphic novel of $12.99 or higher; $1 off any DC comic $2.99 or higher (which is pretty much all of them, right?). Or, of course, you can pick them up beginning Wednesday at your usual pusher.

You know what I notice? Unless I've missed something, there are exactly three women on any of the major books. Kelly Sue DeConnick reportedly pitched them on a six-issue miniseries and was declined. Way to look at expanding your readership there, boys. did a Gendercrunching column that found of the 52 new No. 1 issues, only seven are headlined by solo women or all-female casts. (Some of them get to wear pants this time, though. We've caught up to 1903.) They confirm: of 160 credited creators (artists and writers) on the books, three of them are women.

More fun: says Lois Lane is now a Bella Swan with Clark and some dude named Jonathan vying for her attention (seriously, DC was passing out "Team Clark" and "Team Jonathan" posters at Comic-Con); Catwoman spends half her comic undressed; Harley Quinn's costume is charitably described as streetwalker chic; Batgirl has been reduced to a college kid; the only one of five Robins to be erased from existence was the female Robin; and we won't even get into the wretched behavior of the male DC writers when asked by a fan at Comic-con this summer if they were interested in hiring more women.

So, things are changing at DC? Um... let's just call me skeptical. In the meantime, pick your party and celebrate - or mourn - as you see fit.



Jon Klement

DC pioneered the whole "reboot-the-universe-itself" marketing ploy in 1985 with the Crisis on Infinite Earths when this commentor was in high school. Then, in the '90's in college, it happened again with "Zero Hour".

and again and again and again.....

The only thing I can think of as an excuse for this poor writing is that it must work financially. If it didn't boost revenue, they probably wouldn't keep doing it.

It seems each and every new DC editorial regime has to remake the company in their image. Maybe they could just get back to good writing. Right, like that's going to happen.

Tim Harlan

No one bitched when Marvel came up with the Ultimate line. That was meant to bring in new readers. I see no problem with it. How long can Bruce keep playing Batman. Even if they rebooted everything in the 80's he has to be about 50 now.

Frank Fradella

DC's new line-up was crafted for name recognition and marketability. Period. They picked the creators who gave them the best shot at a strong launch. That's all there is to it. Gender had nothing to do with it. As a publisher myself, I can safely say that DC chose their line-up based on who would make them the most money.

I'm not disputing that there are only three women writers on DC's new line-up, but suggesting that gender bias had something to do with it is the same kind of logic that allows me to say that anyone who dies from a wooden stake through their heart must also be a vampire.

Karen :)

Aging DC fan from the 1960s here. The 1985 reboot was when I jumped the comic book ship. I still have some of my classics stashed in a closet. Hope this works out for the young fans.

Jon Klement


The Ultimate Line has a crucial difference. It's intended to be an alternate universe, not replace the existing one.

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