Monday, April 24, 2017

Updating without reimagining comics

I know there's been a LOT of talk of the major comic book publishers making comics not fun. They've been doing this by recreating characters in their own images, and taking them away from their roots. They've created new characters solely for virtue signalling, and written blatantly political material, alienating half of the comic book buying population.

Well, I'm going to tell you about two new books that (so far) aren't pulling that garbage. Dynamite Entertainment generally takes the properties it's working with very seriously. Part of this is because of the number of licenses they deal with. Unlike IDW, they don't shove everything into a crossover every few months meaninglessly.

They've got two books now that are both technically crossover books, though it's a bit hard to see them as what most companies would consider such. Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys: the Big Lie; and The Greatest Adventure are the titles I'm covering now.

Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys: The Big Lie is a serious noir story. The characters are still the same ones from the books, albeit a touch older. They still are pursuing truth, and tricking their enemies along the way. They are going without any support from an authority figure, and we see them in what could become real danger. There's the sudden turning a small town will do on a prominent figure if given what appears to be reason. I suspect this mystery and conspiracy goes to deep and high places, and will put the characters into moral quandries.

Like I said, serious noir.

The Greatest Adventure is a nontraditional crossover. ALL of the protagonists are creations of Edgar Rice Burroughs. Tarzan, Korak, the Mucker, Ulysses Paxton, Jason Gridley, and a lot more are here.

While only one issue of this has shipped(and it's a setup issue), I have some high hopes for this. Bill Willingham is writing this(Fables), and the artist is pretty solid, with only a couple of mediocre panels, one of which being a roll call type panel.  I'm going to guess that the characters aren't going to be updated even, but merely adapted for working together to stop the threat that caused Tarzan to bring them together. Besides, snowflakes hate ERB, falsely calling him all the names they shove at conservatives and libertarians in SFF.

When you play Social Justice, the world loses.

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