Thanks to Jesse for inspiring this post
There are many things wrong with the current comic industry, but one thing I am going to talk about ties into the previous post: The idea of definite runs and the constant rehashing of same. Most people would argue that Chris Claremont and John Byrne’s run on X-Men was groundbreaking, but it seems that lately the entire run of X-Men has just been redoing what they did back in the 1970s and retelling the same story arcs.
Sentinels on the rampage? Yes, we’ve seen it before. Mutants being hated and feared because they’re different?
A fine allegory for almost any age, but after nearly forty years, one would think the situation would have changed somewhat. Mutants have seemingly made little if any impact on the world around them. The real reason, of course, is they can’t. The idea, set down decades ago, was they were hated and feared, so all current writers have it written down that mutants are hated and feared, no matter how many times they save the planet, but perhaps I am speaking too soon. The latest X-Men event looks to be a serious departure, and dare I say there might even be some kind of change coming from this event that lasts longer than six months. Of course, this ties into my argument.
Any change a character undergoes that moves them away from how they were first created will in all likelihood be undone by the very next creator that comes along. A great example would be Wonder Woman, who deserves a post all of her own.
Grant Morrison’s run on X-Men, faults included, had a lot of interesting ideas, such as mutants having their own communities, slang, art, etc. The moment he leaves? Massive depowering of all mutants (save the popular ones) so they once again go back to being a hated minority.
Current writers need to come up with their own ideas. So many creators talk of “bringing the character back to his/her roots”, but it almost always ends up being what they want to remember of the character, or else they just end up telling another version of an old story; Spider-Man’s marriage being a good example. Why exactly did they need to remove the marriage from history? Spider-Man the character has been married since 1986. For as long as I’ve been aware of the character, he was married and always has been. I take it my years as a fan don’t count because I wasn’t reading it in the 1970s?
Daredevil, to use another example, is now being touted as going back to his happy go lucky roots. Looking over the late 60’s/early 70’s stories, Daredevil was almost a different character than the grim and endlessly depressing vigilante than Miller unlashed upon the world. I think it’s good that they are finally moving away from ruining Matt Murdock’s life and killing his girlfriends, but again, have we stopped rehashing 80’s stories only to see a return of 60’s stories?