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The King is Dead. Long Live the King: DC Reboots

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Industry | September 1, 2011 |

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Industry | September 1, 2011 |

The mighty and ferociously attractive TK covered this a couple of months ago but the day of reckoning is at hand so I thought it worth a nod. We don’t usually cover comic books, and I could insert some cliched joke about how even movie geeks have to look down on someone, but that would be beneath us decent folk and untrue besides. We don’t look down on anyone. Except those who are shorter than us.

So DC comics (which is redundant since DC stands for “Detective Comics”) is the other big company besides Marvel. They’re the ones who have Superman and Batman, whereas Marvel is the one with the X-Men, Iron Man, the Hulk … err, I guess you can remember it easiest by knowing that other than Superman and Batman, all the good movies based on super hero comics have come out of Marvel. The main problem with comics is that there are so damned many of them and they have a history so long and convoluted that they would put most soap operas to shame. Think about it, Batman should be about a hundred years old by now. Sure, there’s the occasional reboot and such, but nothing like DC has just done. They’ve rebooted all of them. All at once. All the main DC super hero comics are simultaneously restarting at issue number 1. As TK noted, it’s a fantastic and ballsy idea that may well detonate in their faces.

September’s here and so the rebooted comics are hitting stores now. So far it’s looking like a pretty good move. Pre-orders of Justice League #1 topped a whopping 200,000. That’s probably going to go down over the next few months but it’s still some pretty massive numbers for today’s comic book industry.

I have an entire book case full of graphic novels. I use the pretentious declination of “comic book” in this case because I’m being literal. I have perhaps twenty actual comic books in the sense of individual issues. I just like getting the trade paperbacks that collect six months of issues all together, and I tend towards the quality ones in the same sense that I don’t watch reality television or most procedurals. If comic books were a church, I’d be the Easter and Christmas attendee.

I’m trying to establish some bonafides because there’s one thing the reboot doesn’t really address, which is the massive proliferation of different comics. I went poking around, to see if I could provide you kind readers a summary of what’s changed for each of the comics. There are 52 of them. 52! There are so many that DC has to sort them by the main characters. There are eleven different comic books being published under the Batman title. Batman, Batman: The Dark Knight, Batman and Robin, Batgirl, Batwoman … there’s everything in there but a comic dedicated to Alfred’s bowel movements.

And I’m not even going to get into putting Superman in jeans. That’s just un-American.

(video via Lumberjack Films)

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Steven Lloyd Wilson is the sci-fi and history editor. You can email him here or follow him on Twitter.