The Gutters: Current Mood

 


The Gutters are audio posts expressing thoughts about life outside the panels and pages of comic books, from my perspective.

Previous The Gutters posts: https://longboxreview.com/tag/gutters/

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Character Witness

Jaimie Alexander (Sif in the Thor movies) recently stated,

“The thing I really enjoy about Marvel is that they start with a character first and all the explosions and costumes, the glitz and glam, are secondary to who the actual character is deep down. That’s something I haven’t really been able to find with DC Comics,” said Alexander. “I know that’s a bold statement, but it’s been my experience.”

I can’t argue with her experience, but I disagree with her perception, and it is one that is held by many. There was a time, yes, when DC Comics characters and stories were, quite simply, not that interesting (stiff as a board comes to mind), especially in comparison to Marvel’s early work. But I don’t think it’s been that way since in decades (this is informed by my own reading experience, which started in the 1980s). No character in the New Teen Titans, Legion of Super-Heroes, Swamp Thing? I don’t think so. Animal Man, Books of Magic, Sandman? Batgirl, Secret Six? All good, strong characters from which good stories are told.

I don’t mean this to be a “Marvel isn’t all that” post, but to demonstrate that this idea of DC Comics as a publisher of not interesting (at best) and substandard (at worst) comics in comparison is just incorrect. I’m sure some (many?) will just deride me as a DC apologist, and if they do, so be it. The actual material will support my assertion.

A Waste of Time? Really?

I heard a person on a podcast the other day complaining that Legend of Wonder Woman, if it wasn’t official continuity, was a waste of time to read. I don’t get that. I guess I’ve always subscribed to the thought that stories are malleable and can be enduring (at least the good ones) and withstand (and can even be strengthened by) interpretations and new takes on the existing tropes. I like what Renae De Liz & Ray Dillon are doing with WW’s origin. Plus, if enough people respond positively to it, the story could become continuity. Why dismiss the premise out of hand?

What Does It Mean?

I dreamt that I was in a long line of people, all waiting to climb these stairs. We were anxious but not irritated at the wait. Eventually, I made it to the top of the stairs, and when I saw who was waiting there, I burst into tears of joy: it was Dream, from Neil Gaiman’s Sandman, as he was before he died. I don’t know why I cried, but I was overcome at seeing Dream for some reason. Dream then smiled at me, and I woke up.

Podcast Episode 34: Westward Ho!

After returning from my trip to Seattle, WA, and Portland, OR, I talk about my visit to Zanadu Comics, and then I discuss four titles I’ve read recently (at the 14:45 mark):

  • Star Trek #13
  • Aquaman #0
  • Batman, Inc. #0
  • Batman: The Dark Knight #0

Finally, I rant a bit about arguments people have over Twitter (36:04).

Thanks for listening!

Direct Download (38:33)