Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

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Jabroniville
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Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by Jabroniville » Tue Aug 15, 2017 9:05 am

I was struck suddenly when I went through my pull-list and asked my local store to drop four of the books from my file. With rent being jacked up last December, I've been looking for ways to cut costs, and finding some of the books getting weaker made me want to drop a lot of them.

Archie's Riverdale was pretty good, but came off like a bunch of snippets for a show I haven't been watching (I don't think I have a CW affiliate- I cut my cable package down quite a ways). Mark Waid's Avengers has been SO hit or miss- I found the first "relaunch" awful and a waste of money (the "Stark's Run-Down Team" version with Ms. Marvel, Miles and Kid Nova), but the updated one with Hercules added and the kids gone was pretty good... but the last couple of issues were again coming off like "Event Filler" and a waste of time.

Uncanny Avengers was one of the better books Marvel was producing, thanks to Gerry Duggan's writing... but the whole "Cap as HYDRA" thing COMPLETELY threw it off the rails, leaving a makeshift team of Cable, Deadpool and others being the guys to take down the RED SKULL, who if you'll remember had Professor X's telepathic might, setting off the entire Uncanny book in the first place, all those years ago. The ending was quite satisfying, but I can practically FEEL it coming off of every page that the new writer has no idea what this team is about- the "Avengers Unity Squad" was supposed to have Mutants & Avengers together, but is now just "Assorted Guys"- Johnny Storm, Rogue, Deadpool, Brother Voodoo, Cable and Synapse (the Token Inhuman from that little push)? It just doesn't have a PURPOSE anymore, other than to put another Avengers book out there.

But then I looked at the solicits for the current "thing", and it turns out that Marvel is relaunching AGAIN, but this time more of a "course correction"- like they took notice of what wasn't working sales-wise, and decided that "Back To Basics" was the best approach. As much as fans were pissed off by that guy's report that "retailers told me that readers don't like diversity", it seems like Marvel's listened, and we're getting a lot of the old guard back.

But I was surprised to see some of my OTHER books getting the axe! Ultimates was one of the more fascinating reads, being written by Al Ewing and featuring a lot of crazy-as-balls Cosmic Stuff. Ewing writes "diversity" better than anyone in comics- both his "Cage Avengers" and this book are almost entirely comprised of minorities, but not only did it never beat you over the head with it, but it actually took me a while to NOTICE, it was so casually-done! Ewing even threw in guys inspired by the New Universe, which was fun. But it seems like the book- all about the new "Cosmic Order", has served its purpose. This was another book hard-hit by "current events", as you had stuff like Civil War II going on with Captain Marvel & T'Challa on opposing sides and everyone fighting- you could SEE that Ewing just didn't wanna deal with any of that crap.

And, tragically, the Slott/Allred Silver Surfer is also being cancelled. Its sales were AWFUL- 15,000+ bad, which to me indicates that Allred is just not a popular artist at all. I mean, everyone I know who IS an artist loves the guy, but I get the impression that if you aren't one, you think he sucks :). But this was my favorite Marvel book going for 2-3 years straight, and I'll miss the hell out of it. Such a neat, funny book in a world of angst (Silver Surfer lost his ability to pronounce the letter "B" in a card game!).

With the impending cancellation of Invincible (six issues left!), plus Jem and the Holograms going to a more Limited Release after Sophie Campbell left (that book really got kicked in the ass without her- she was the lifeblood of the series), I've, uh... got a lot more cash on my hands all of a sudden. Four books I dropped, two more are cancelled, and two more are ABOUT to be. I feel kinda bad for my comic shop, though.


ANYWAYS, here's the Wiki page with the list of comics: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marvel_Legacy

What does everyone think about it? Marvel dropping some of its "Diversity" books will rub some people the wrong way, but plenty of them are still around (America, etc.), plus the Falcon is getting a re-launch. I haven't heard too much about what's coming out, but... fifty-three books? REALLY? I hate this aspect of modern comics so much- more than "replace your favorites with diversity hires!" or "writing for the trade"- THEY ARE MAKING TOO MANY BOOKS!! No WONDER their "Diversity" books sold less than 15000 a month! They made like twenty of them, and released them all simultaneously with their big stuff!

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M4C8
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Post by M4C8 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:33 pm

While I did enjoy aspects of the Ultimate's book such as the shout out to the New Universe I did find it somewhat :roll: at times, especially at the beginning. Galactus has been a 'problem' that has existed since the birth of the universe, the brightest minds of millions of alien races going back billions of years (Including Earth heroes such as Reed Richards) failed to come up with a solution, yet Black Panther's new little team 'fixes' the problem in the very first issue and they did it in an almost casual manner.
While your right about Uncanny no longer living up to it's premise I personally don't mind that to be honest, I enjoy when teams respond to varied different threats without there being a prevailing narrative behind everything they do. I may be in the minority in that view but that's how I remember comics book teams operating when I first started to read comics and it would definitely relieves some of the 'Event fatigue' Similarly I always enjoyed the seasons of TV shows such as The X-Files featuring stand alone episodes more than the ones with a single major story drawn out over the entire season.

I would definitely love for Marvel to lessen the number of releases if that meant creativity being more focused but I can't see it happening. Marvel is in a no-win situation over the diversity issue, Marvel has become so anti-white male that they've replaced all their most popular characters and turned Captain America into Hitler and yet they still receive accusations of racism because books featuring minority characters are being cancelled. Some people seem to forget that comic books are primary entertainment and while yes they do broach political issues on occasion most fans don't want to be preached at almost continuously so it's not surprising that political books don't retain the sales that others books do.

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by Shock » Tue Aug 15, 2017 5:12 pm

I haven't read any Marvel books regularly in a while for a number of reasons

1) Terrible events with myriad crossovers polluting the majority of their line. Especially when you know the endgame of the event is going to be "back to status quo". Did anyone really think Steve Rogers was going to stay a Nazi?

2) Absurd number of similar titles. How many Avengers and Spiderman titles do they need?

3) For that matter, how many Spider people do they need?

4) Bad art. When they try to do something different (e.g. Squirrel Girl, Patsy Walker AKA Hellcat), it ends up coming with terrible art. I LIKE those characters and I still don't buy because they're so ugly.

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danelsan
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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by danelsan » Tue Aug 15, 2017 6:51 pm

Having a hard time finding it again, but once saw someone on twitter using sales data and what was going on around the ups and downs in sales to argue against the idea that diversity was the problem. The conclusion, from what I remember, was that the low sales had much more to do with Big Event fatigue and something else I can't recall, but I think it was something related to simply badly written stuff. Maybe something to do with endless reboots too, but I'm not as sure on that one.

And I think for new characters, "diverse" or not, having well written stories is pretty essential to their success. Spider-Man has proved that his long history has built up resiliency to withstand some truly terrible story arcs, but newer or less well-know characters don't have those decades of good-will built up.

Events can be part of the problem. Besides people being tired of the meaningless company-wide arcs that "will change everything" but end up more on less on status quo as usual, we all know of books that were going well with great story arcs until they got completely derailed by the newest huge event. That is an easy killer for new characters, I imagine. Art certainly plays a part on which books get rejected by the audience, which can affect both new and old characters, but is again more "lethal" to characters without decades of fandom.

Sometimes a megastar creative team may be put on new character in order to push it, other times they get "experimental" teams being put in a book the company is more willing to risk because it is not a big seller, at least not yet, and sometimes these things become surprising successes. But it is a relatively common source of weird or simply bad art/writing.

I believe it is more important as far as sales go to have a well written and illustrated line than a diverse one, but if you have a diverse line of well done stuff you may be more likely to reach a wider audience. Now, as far as artists wanting to have positive impact on society go, I think making comic books diverse is more relevant there, but again it has to be well done, otherwise it is just a shot in the foot. Marvel has often done books which the whole point was a marketing gimmick of "LOOK! LOOK AT THE DIVERSITY" without caring to make an actually good superhero comic. This might get you that wider audience for a while, but is more likely to get you angry tweets when you inevitably cancel the book due to low sales. Including them in events is not gonna help, since people are tired of those anyway.

Miss Marvel is not successful because she is a Muslim heroine, it is a success because it is a good book. Being a Muslim teen heroine gives her a good hook, but it could have been poured down the drain with a bad book.

Heck, fugitive/former prostitute/lab-made assassin, female clone of Wolverine X-23 had everything to be terrible, but the great art and well written book saved the concept.

The phenomenons Jab often points out about how characters/story structure no longer making clear how the powers of different characters work, or sometimes even what these powers are, and how super fights are now often background events are things I also think are hurting comics as a whole. For supers, understanding their powers can be an important part of their characterization, and fights as action pillars in the structure gave the conflicts a lot more weight than when pushed to the background. Makes it hard to get invested in the conflict when the characters participating in it appear not to be paying much attention.

In the end, "make better comics" should seen like an obvious solution to faltering comics sale, but somehow it seems to elude companies.

Sure, trying to reach a wider audience through diversity and through books of varying tone and target audiences makes sense, but I don't think running books on marketing gimmicks is a sustainable long-term strategy. Make good comics of heroes of various ethnicities, teen heroes, female heroes, good comics for adults, for teens, for kids. Good gritty super-heroics comics, good fun super-heroics, good comedic super-heroics comics...you can shoot in a lot of directions, but they need to be good effort shots. "this hero is [minority]" alone does not make a good comic.

I think there may be untapped audiences for "superhero comic book about a superhero who is part of a minority". I don't think there are significant ones for "superhero comic book about 'minorityness', as spouted and ranted about about by a superhero".

Now, on the specifics of yet another relaunch, those are getting as tired and annoying as the mega events, and are not being properly used to fix much of anything. I'm sure there will be some good books, some bad ones, but if the last few reboots an relaunches are any indication, the same mistakes will continue to be made: too many books for certain heroes/teams, too many company-wide events, marketing gimmicks pretending to be comic books and so on.

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by danelsan » Tue Aug 15, 2017 6:56 pm

As for Silver Surfer, I don't think allred sucks, but I could have been happier with the art, as it is just not the kind of artstyle I most favor for superhero comics. Now, that She-Hulk comic from a little while back in which she was back to lawyering in addtion to superheroing, with a new supporting cast and stuff? THAT one I had to stop reading because I could not stand the art.

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Post by Scots Dragon » Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:05 pm

M4C8 wrote:
Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:33 pm
I would definitely love for Marvel to lessen the number of releases if that meant creativity being more focused but I can't see it happening. Marvel is in a no-win situation over the diversity issue, Marvel has become so anti-white male that they've replaced all their most popular characters and turned Captain America into Hitler and yet they still receive accusations of racism because books featuring minority characters are being cancelled.
Yeah, no. Turning Captain America into Hitler is not something that the 'SJWs' (god that term is basically meaningless at this point) wanted because it's a fucking insult to the legacy of a Jewish-created character who was designed specifically to oppose Nazism. You might not think so, but we leftist types actually are often comic book fans, and the general prevailing opinion of the Nazi-Cap storyline has been so overwhelmingly negative that many of us have abandoned reading Marvel Comics entirely.

As for anti-white male, don't make me laugh. Them trying a diversity push is no different from the last time they've done this. Or the time before that. Or the time before that.

A black person in the Iron Man suit? Jim Rhodes in the 1980s. That it's a girl genius this time is basically irrelevant.

A legacy Captain America? Not really anything new in itself, and Sam Wilson taking over the role was basically more or less the second-most obvious choice behind Bucky Barnes, and they already did that one once.

Jane Foster as Thor? Dates back to an old issue of What If...?

Amadeus Cho as the Hulk? Actually kind of a genius move in the long term, and the culmination of a character arc that fits about as well as does the use of Sam Wilson as Captain America.

The Spider-Gwen stuff? Entirely a random idea that just got popular and is actually really good.

The Ms. Marvel stuff? Actually also really good. And Carol's still around as Captain Marvel so that's not really replacing anything.

The Ultimate Spider-Man stuff with Miles Morales? Again, pretty good. If anything Spider-Man works better as a person of colour because in the 2010s a PoC fits the mould of a poor nerdy kid from Queens than does a white kid.

You can complain about the quality of the books outside of the legacy material all you want, but Marvel's been sucky across the board lately thanks to mismanagement, poor editing, disregarding entire popular sections of their comics line because they don't have the film rights, hijacking ongoing comics for terrible events that should never have been greenlit, and attempting to make their comic-book lines work as if it were the mid-1990s despite that being exactly what led to their bankruptcy last time. Marvel basically did not recover properly from the 1996 crash and has been in a downward spiral ever since; it basically has nothing to do with diversity pushes and everything to do with the fact that they just plain suck as a company lately.

You want to rail against something, rail against them screwing over the Fantastic Four and X-Men.
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Ares
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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by Ares » Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:50 pm

I'm honestly getting tired of hearing the word "diversity", because everyone is using is as the justification for whatever point they're trying to make.

"Comic books are problematic because of a lack of diversity."

"Diversity books don't sell."

"Diversity books are ruining comics."

"If you champion diversity, you're a fake geek girl / SJW."

"If you don't champion diversity, you're a troll / nazi."

I'm just tired of the whole thing.

Diversity wasn't the problem with comics, whether a lack of or pushing for it. There were plenty of underutilized female and minority characters before 2014, but the inclusion of more original minority characters wouldn't have been a problem either so long as it was handled right. We've had female heroes since 1941, we've had racially diverse characters since the 70s, gay and lesbian characters since the 80s, etc. But we could always use more of them.

As I've told Jab, I view shared universes as basically a big toybox. There's the popular toys that everyone wants to play with, like Superman, Spider-Man, Batman, Iron Man, Wonder Woman, etc. There's the semi-popular toys that a lot of people want to play with, like the Flash, the Fantastic Four, Green Lantern, Daredevil, etc. Then there's not-as-popular toys that some people latch onto, like Luke Cage, Martian Manhunter, Iron Fist, Blue Beetle, etc. And then there's those characters at the bottom of the toybox that only that one kid plays with, but the kid loves that toy dearly, like the New Warriors, the Doom Patrol, Excalibur, the Outsiders, etc. And then there's the toys pretty much no one plays with, like the Creeper, Slapstick, the Wonder Twins, Skin, etc.

The writer's job is to have so much fun "playing" with that toy, telling such fun stories that the other kids are enraptured, that everyone else will want to play with that toy too. The right writer can be the guy who takes that one toy nobody liked to someone a lot of kids would want to play with. The writers of "Immortal Iron Fist" took Iron Fist from a lower tier character to someone with his own TV show, an Avengers membership (back when that meant something), and multiple books. Or in some cases, to bring a new toy and put them into the toy box and see if anyone will like playing with them.

An editors job is to make sure that everyone playing with their toys puts them back in the box in as good condition as they found them, if not in better condition. You want to keep your toys in good condition so everyone can keep playing with them.

What bad writers do is break a toy in a way that no one can or wants to play with it until someone later comes along and tries to fix it. All the changes to Hawkman and Donna Troy made the characters toxic for the longest time. Punisher as an angel lead to him being unused for a while. Superman as an energy being tanked sales.

Bad editors will let the above toy breaking happen because the kid playing with them is too popular. Or they will put restrictions on how you can play with the toy to such an extent that the limitations make the toy unfun to play with, and thus no one wants to touch or hear about it. And sometimes they will force you to play with a toy you don't want and tell you how to play with said toy, so that there really isn't any joy in what you experience with it.

What DC did in 2011 was basically take away all of the DC toys the kids loved and replaced them with these weird re-paint figures that kind of looked like their old toys, but were made of cheaper plastic, not as much articulation, no cloth capes, and weird paint jobs/character molds. The only way people could have fun with them was by pretending they were their old toys, until DC finally decided to give a lot of the old toys back.

What Marvel has done is let some a bunch of the pretentious kids from the arts n crafts school across the street come in and play with toys. Only these kids don't like playing with toys, they think toys are stupid, so they're going to re-paint the toys into something they find amusing and then leave the now messed up toy for others to fix. That toy with of the guy dressed like the American flag with a shield? Let's re-paint him to look like a Nazi, because we're still upset the person we wanted to win the election lost. That toy with the long blonde hair in the black costume with the lightning bolt on her chest, Miss Marvel? Yeah, lets cut her hair off and put her head on a boy's body. While we're at it, lets take the guy with hammer and put his head on a girl toy's body.

And to torture this metaphor a bit more, when some of the editors saw what was going on, they decided to just take out several toys the kids loved, like that guy in the gold and red armor, and instead replace them with this cheap knock off toy made in Brazilian sweat shop. Because despite being crappier in all respects, it does look a little like the old toy, but the insides are two seconds away from breaking. And then they decided to just flood the toybox with a ton of these knockoffs, so that you have to dig through them to find the toys you actually want to play with, and hope that the arts n crafts kids haven't gotten to them yet either.

Finally, after all is said and done, the arts n crafts kids will happily go back to what they were doing, because they were never going to stick around to play with the toys. They just wanted to have fun being the center of attention and defacing said toys for a bit. And what you're left with is a toybox full of crappy knock offs no one wants to play with, and good toys that have been defaced to the point that no one wants to touch them.

The only hope then is that the really dedicated kids are going to stick around and spend hours separating the crap toys from the good toys, then spend just as long cleaning, repairing and repainting the defaced / broken toys, and then finding where the editors hid the good toys that got taken out of the toy box and put them back in said box. And hope that by doing this, they can win the other kids back.

Now, if the new kids had come over and brought some of their toys and wanted to see how old kids might like them, there wouldn't have been a problem. And if someone wanted to borrow a couple of accessories from one of the other toys to see how they played out on the new toy, so long as the old toy would get them back at some point.

Instead, Marvel is just flooding the box with crap toys and letting people who don't care about the other kids break the good toys beyond recognition.

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by Jack of Spades » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:31 pm

I'll name names -- Bendis and Millar have turned to shit every character they've touched that I care about. The only time I've recognized Tony Stark since 2006 is when Matt Fraction was writing him.

If Marvel wants me to buy any of their books, they need to fire those two hacks. Bring back the Fantastic Four as the first family of the Marvel Universe. And understand some basic truths about their line. Steve Rogers is Captain America. Tony Stark is Iron Man. Peter Parker, for his sins, is Spider-Man. And Scott Summers is not a racist maniac.

Then give me heroes. Heroes of all colors and shapes and backgrounds, but heroes who uphold the values super-heroes have stood for since the 60s. Not heroes who “can make the hard decisions,” but heroes who find a way to do what’s right no matter what. Heroes who understand that with great power comes great responsibility, who stand up for the ideal when everyone else is compromising, who will fix what no one else can.

Give me books like Al Ewing’s Mighty Avengers, where I was six issues in before I noticed how non-white the team was. And didn't care, because Luke Cage knows he doesn't need to be the All-New Hulk; he's Luke Motherf@$%!ing Cage. He'll kick your ass on his own strengths. Adam Brashear doesn't need to be ret-conned into being Sue Storm's lover to establish his bona fides like the Sentry did; the Blue Marvel is how you go about ret-conning in a major powerhouse. Roy Thomas couldn't do better.

Give me books like Ms. Marvel about an interesting character who happens to be Muslim, rather than a book about Islam. Give me Wiccan, Hulkling, and Patriot. Give me the Falcon and the Black Widow. Give me a totally awesome Hulk.

Don't tear down the wonderful legacies you've built over decades. Build new ones.
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M4C8
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Post by M4C8 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:51 pm

Scots Dragon wrote:
Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:05 pm
M4C8 wrote:
Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:33 pm
I would definitely love for Marvel to lessen the number of releases if that meant creativity being more focused but I can't see it happening. Marvel is in a no-win situation over the diversity issue, Marvel has become so anti-white male that they've replaced all their most popular characters and turned Captain America into Hitler and yet they still receive accusations of racism because books featuring minority characters are being cancelled.
Yeah, no. Turning Captain America into Hitler is not something that the 'SJWs' (god that term is basically meaningless at this point) wanted because it's a fucking insult to the legacy of a Jewish-created character who was designed specifically to oppose Nazism. You might not think so, but we leftist types actually are often comic book fans, and the general prevailing opinion of the Nazi-Cap storyline has been so overwhelmingly negative that many of us have abandoned reading Marvel Comics entirely.

As for anti-white male, don't make me laugh. Them trying a diversity push is no different from the last time they've done this. Or the time before that. Or the time before that.

A black person in the Iron Man suit? Jim Rhodes in the 1980s. That it's a girl genius this time is basically irrelevant.

A legacy Captain America? Not really anything new in itself, and Sam Wilson taking over the role was basically more or less the second-most obvious choice behind Bucky Barnes, and they already did that one once.

Jane Foster as Thor? Dates back to an old issue of What If...?

Amadeus Cho as the Hulk? Actually kind of a genius move in the long term, and the culmination of a character arc that fits about as well as does the use of Sam Wilson as Captain America.

The Spider-Gwen stuff? Entirely a random idea that just got popular and is actually really good.

The Ms. Marvel stuff? Actually also really good. And Carol's still around as Captain Marvel so that's not really replacing anything.

The Ultimate Spider-Man stuff with Miles Morales? Again, pretty good. If anything Spider-Man works better as a person of colour because in the 2010s a PoC fits the mould of a poor nerdy kid from Queens than does a white kid.

You can complain about the quality of the books outside of the legacy material all you want, but Marvel's been sucky across the board lately thanks to mismanagement, poor editing, disregarding entire popular sections of their comics line because they don't have the film rights, hijacking ongoing comics for terrible events that should never have been greenlit, and attempting to make their comic-book lines work as if it were the mid-1990s despite that being exactly what led to their bankruptcy last time. Marvel basically did not recover properly from the 1996 crash and has been in a downward spiral ever since; it basically has nothing to do with diversity pushes and everything to do with the fact that they just plain suck as a company lately.

You want to rail against something, rail against them screwing over the Fantastic Four and X-Men.
Those of us who have read comics for any length of time know the origins of Captain America, who created him and why he was created but unfortunately the type of new 'fans' who screams racism because a book is cancelled don't know that history and don't understand how insulting the whole thing is (Frankly even if they did know, I don't think they'd care so long as their extreme ideology was being obliged) Just because I don't immediately accept that any decision surrounding race or gender is automatically right doesn't mean my politics don't fall more on the left. As I've stated on these boards before Marvel has untold non white and non male characters and they have been starring in their own titles for at least as long as I've been collecting comics (Over twenty years) A 'Diversity push' could have been accomplished by either using some of the many minority characters that already exist or by creating new characters, taking all the most popular successful iconic characters and replacing them with race/gender swapped teen copies was a terrible terrible idea and is hugely disrespectful and condescending to all. Also for this to happen the fundamental beliefs of many of the established characters were changed, previously they would never have knowingly allowed such young characters to operate let alone allow them on the Avengers and yet after the Secret Wars when the new prime universe came into existence not only did they allow under-age teens on the team, some characters were actively encouraging young kids to become costumed adventurers (Tony Stark with Iron Heart for example)

Yes many popular characters have previously had copies but fans have always known that they were temporary replacements and the originals would eventually return. Thor for instance has had several (Beta Ray Bill, Red Norvell, Thunderstrike and even the female Tarene) the issue fans had with Jane was not that she existed or that she was female it was the way in which she gained Mjolnir (Destroying over fifty years of established continuity) and that she took Thor's name despite him still being alive. Also several of the characters that replaced the icons were established characters in their own right, with their own identities and abilities but instead of getting pushed with decent characterization and stories they were piggybacked onto the popularity of already established white male heroes, that's the opposite of progressive.
While I've never disliked Miles and have always bought his books, to me he's just one of the many Spider-Man copies that exist, he adds nothing new or fresh to the identity and bringing him over to the Prime universe was wholly unnecessary. For most fans Peter Parker IS Spider-Man and always will be, his originality and characterization are what made 'Spider-Man' such a success in the first place and he's who we want to see established in any media before any of the copies appear. Even when Ben Reilly became Spider-Man in the 90's the fans wanted Parker back and Ben was a literal clone. Also I have to say, you complaining about the use of SJW only then to use the equally hackneyed POC seems a bit rich.
Basically all these copycat characters would have been accepted by the long term fans if they had been introduced with their own identities and their books were released alongside those of the originals, not instead of.

Yes of course the quality of Marvel titles across the board has lead to lower sales but that doesn't in any way dismiss the reality that the diversity push had a significant impact also, obviously by primarily focusing efforts on the push instead just writing great stories creativity was stifled, the overall quality suffered and therefore the fans began losing interest.

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by Jabroniville » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:58 pm

I'm at work, so I can't make a giant post, but I pretty much agree with Danelsan and could just copy & paste that. Hell, I actually like JaneThor and ChoHulk better than the originals, sacrilegious as that sounds :). What I don't care for is the culture of preachiness and shaming.

A friend of mine said it thusly:
I appreciate that marvels doing their generations arc dedicated to characters and their legacy characters (ie Steve cap and falcon cap) and in the promo art they have 11 characters and their legacy characters. Of the 11 legacies only 1 doesn't involve a gender switch or a switch to a visible minority. That 1 is already female
I don't have a problem with it per se but I'm more annoyed at how obvious and heavy handed it is

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by M4C8 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:05 pm

Ares wrote:
Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:50 pm
I'm honestly getting tired of hearing the word "diversity", because everyone is using is as the justification for whatever point they're trying to make.

"Comic books are problematic because of a lack of diversity."

"Diversity books don't sell."

"Diversity books are ruining comics."

"If you champion diversity, you're a fake geek girl / SJW."

"If you don't champion diversity, you're a troll / nazi."

I'm just tired of the whole thing.

Diversity wasn't the problem with comics, whether a lack of or pushing for it. There were plenty of underutilized female and minority characters before 2014, but the inclusion of more original minority characters wouldn't have been a problem either so long as it was handled right. We've had female heroes since 1941, we've had racially diverse characters since the 70s, gay and lesbian characters since the 80s, etc. But we could always use more of them.

As I've told Jab, I view shared universes as basically a big toybox. There's the popular toys that everyone wants to play with, like Superman, Spider-Man, Batman, Iron Man, Wonder Woman, etc. There's the semi-popular toys that a lot of people want to play with, like the Flash, the Fantastic Four, Green Lantern, Daredevil, etc. Then there's not-as-popular toys that some people latch onto, like Luke Cage, Martian Manhunter, Iron Fist, Blue Beetle, etc. And then there's those characters at the bottom of the toybox that only that one kid plays with, but the kid loves that toy dearly, like the New Warriors, the Doom Patrol, Excalibur, the Outsiders, etc. And then there's the toys pretty much no one plays with, like the Creeper, Slapstick, the Wonder Twins, Skin, etc.

The writer's job is to have so much fun "playing" with that toy, telling such fun stories that the other kids are enraptured, that everyone else will want to play with that toy too. The right writer can be the guy who takes that one toy nobody liked to someone a lot of kids would want to play with. The writers of "Immortal Iron Fist" took Iron Fist from a lower tier character to someone with his own TV show, an Avengers membership (back when that meant something), and multiple books. Or in some cases, to bring a new toy and put them into the toy box and see if anyone will like playing with them.

An editors job is to make sure that everyone playing with their toys puts them back in the box in as good condition as they found them, if not in better condition. You want to keep your toys in good condition so everyone can keep playing with them.

What bad writers do is break a toy in a way that no one can or wants to play with it until someone later comes along and tries to fix it. All the changes to Hawkman and Donna Troy made the characters toxic for the longest time. Punisher as an angel lead to him being unused for a while. Superman as an energy being tanked sales.

Bad editors will let the above toy breaking happen because the kid playing with them is too popular. Or they will put restrictions on how you can play with the toy to such an extent that the limitations make the toy unfun to play with, and thus no one wants to touch or hear about it. And sometimes they will force you to play with a toy you don't want and tell you how to play with said toy, so that there really isn't any joy in what you experience with it.

What DC did in 2011 was basically take away all of the DC toys the kids loved and replaced them with these weird re-paint figures that kind of looked like their old toys, but were made of cheaper plastic, not as much articulation, no cloth capes, and weird paint jobs/character molds. The only way people could have fun with them was by pretending they were their old toys, until DC finally decided to give a lot of the old toys back.

What Marvel has done is let some a bunch of the pretentious kids from the arts n crafts school across the street come in and play with toys. Only these kids don't like playing with toys, they think toys are stupid, so they're going to re-paint the toys into something they find amusing and then leave the now messed up toy for others to fix. That toy with of the guy dressed like the American flag with a shield? Let's re-paint him to look like a Nazi, because we're still upset the person we wanted to win the election lost. That toy with the long blonde hair in the black costume with the lightning bolt on her chest, Miss Marvel? Yeah, lets cut her hair off and put her head on a boy's body. While we're at it, lets take the guy with hammer and put his head on a girl toy's body.

And to torture this metaphor a bit more, when some of the editors saw what was going on, they decided to just take out several toys the kids loved, like that guy in the gold and red armor, and instead replace them with this cheap knock off toy made in Brazilian sweat shop. Because despite being crappier in all respects, it does look a little like the old toy, but the insides are two seconds away from breaking. And then they decided to just flood the toybox with a ton of these knockoffs, so that you have to dig through them to find the toys you actually want to play with, and hope that the arts n crafts kids haven't gotten to them yet either.

Finally, after all is said and done, the arts n crafts kids will happily go back to what they were doing, because they were never going to stick around to play with the toys. They just wanted to have fun being the center of attention and defacing said toys for a bit. And what you're left with is a toybox full of crappy knock offs no one wants to play with, and good toys that have been defaced to the point that no one wants to touch them.

The only hope then is that the really dedicated kids are going to stick around and spend hours separating the crap toys from the good toys, then spend just as long cleaning, repairing and repainting the defaced / broken toys, and then finding where the editors hid the good toys that got taken out of the toy box and put them back in said box. And hope that by doing this, they can win the other kids back.

Now, if the new kids had come over and brought some of their toys and wanted to see how old kids might like them, there wouldn't have been a problem. And if someone wanted to borrow a couple of accessories from one of the other toys to see how they played out on the new toy, so long as the old toy would get them back at some point.

Instead, Marvel is just flooding the box with crap toys and letting people who don't care about the other kids break the good toys beyond recognition.
That is the best analogy about the state of the modern comic book industry that I've ever read (Especially when it comes to Marvel)

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by Ares » Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:00 am

Regarding Marvel being anti-straight white male or actively hating their fans . . . well, it's not hard to see how some people come to that conclusion.

One thing that has become popular with comics is the concept of legacy, that a role or identity could be passed on to others. The Iron Fist and Black Panther have that sort of thing built into their concepts, there have been Green Lanterns of every race and sex, even Batman has handed his mask over to two other people.

This dates as far back as the Silver Age, when Alan Scott and Jay Garrick were replaced with Hal Jordan and Barry Allen. But at the same time, replacing existing characters has never been something that has gone smoothly either, even when the person doing the replacing is the same race and gender as the person being replaced. Thor being replaced by Eric Masterson was not met with universal acclaim, neither was Wally West replacing Barry Allen, Kyle Rayner replacing Hal Jordan, etc. Heroes being replaced with other heroes is generally never met with open arms because heroes are not simply a name, race, sex, and sexual orientation. They're characters with their own histories, personalities, and people get attached to those characters. Hell, Marvel created an absolute shitstorm when they replaced Peter Parker with a literal clone of himself meant simply to wipe away the angst of the couple of years preceding the Clone Saga.

There are a couple of things that writers do to try and get around this. The first is to have the replacing hero be an established character the fans already like, or to take time to establish the replacement. Fans may have wanted Barry Allen back, but Wally West was a known quantity, someone they could see trying to fill Barry's boots that the knew. When Rhodey took over as Iron Man, he'd been a regular supporting cast for Tony for years, and was a fan favorite. Likewise, the writing team spent 40 issues establishing who Eric Masterson was, so that when he took over as Thor, the transition was smooth and felt natural.

Another way to get around this was to make sure it was obvious the replacement would be temporary. Eric was always seeking for a way to return Thor to his rightful place. Tony was still a regular in his book, and his overcoming his problems was a central theme, making it clear that he'd be back as Iron Man soon. And sometimes this was done especially to show why the person under the mask was the only person who had the right to be that hero. When Steve Rogers and Bruce Wayne were replaced by more vicious anti-heroes, the point was that these heroes were Captain America and Batman, and anyone else wearing the mask was a temporary stand-in at best.

Sometimes the character being replaced was flat out killed off, such as Barry Allen or Ted Kord. In those cases, fans of said characters were rightly pissed, and at that point, the only way to really win them over involves two things: respecting the legacy of the previous hero and REALLY damn good storytelling. And in both the case of Wally West and Jaime Reyes, that was what the fans got. Wally struggled for close to a decade trying to get out of Barry Allen's shadow, and even the story where he finally truly became the Flash in the eyes of many was a love letter to Barry Allen and his mythos. Barry was never treated with anything but reverence and respect by the DCU at large, and by Wally especially. Likewise, Jaime was very respectful of the memory of Ted Kord, as well as Dan Garret, the Blue Beetle before Ted. Jaime was inspired by Ted's ingenuity and brilliance, even proudly stating that a Blue Beetle doesn't need powers to succeed, defeating aliens without his scarab. And Jaime gladly participated in a plan to bring Ted back to life when the opportunity presented itself. In both of these cases, the anger a lot of fans felt was smoothed out by the respect shown for their former hero and the good writing involving the new one.

A BAD way to do this was how they replaced Hal Jordan with Kyle Rayner. Hal basically suffered character assassination, becoming a genocidal supervillain that tried to destroy the universe so he could re-make it in his own image, murdering several of his allies and turning the Green Lantern Corps. into the Green Lantern Corpse. Hal Jordan fans spend near to a decade fighting to get the real Hal Jordan back, and they finally did with Green Lantern: Rebirth.

So fans not liking poorly done replacement heroes is not a new thing.

What is new is why heroes are being replaced, the timing and quantities with which they're being replaced, and the reaction to when fans voice their displeasure this time.

On social media, we have comic creators basically blasting fans for disliking replacement heroes, with such fans being labeled trolls, racist or sexist. While there's no doubt that some of said "fans" are actually just trolls, more of them are just people bringing their criticisms and concerns to creators, and often being insulted for doing. Folks like Anita Sarkesian have popularized the idea that any criticism is an attack or harassment. There's even some circumstantial evidence that some at Marvel have aided in doxing people that complained about them.

One things fans tend to dislike is the idea that someone is shoving an agenda at them. This is what makes the timing / quantity issue something readily apparent. In 2014, we got a female Thor. Okay, some fans were miffed, but hey, Thor is still kind of around, he'll probably be back eventually.

But then it wasn't just Thor. It was Captain America. Iron Man. Nick Fury. The Hulk. Nova. Quasar. Ultimate Peter Parker. Wolverine. Hawkeye. Ghost Rider.

There's the old military saying: "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it's enemy action." It's hard not to see an agenda when all of these characters have been replaced in a very short amount of time, and the commonality between them was that they're all straight, white and male. There is a very real difference than the time they replaced other heroes, because before, it was usually one character at a time, and the intent was to eventually push that character into being their own hero. Sure, Rhodey, John and Eric got to be Iron Man, Capt. America and Thor for a while, but the end goal was to eventually make them their own heroes as War Machine, USAgent and Thunderstrike. Dick Grayson might have been Batman for a little while, but he was his own man as Nightwing and fans wanted him to back to being that, much like how folks want Sam to go back to being the Falcon, especially with how much the character has succeeded in the films.

So they're replacing a lot of traditional heroes en-mass, and while doing so they're also flooding the market with a ton of books, many of them poorly written and conceived. They're going for quantity over quality and it's hurting the industry, especially when the writers are pushing fans away and removing too many classic heroes the fans would want to read about.

And then you get books that . . . well, are not very good and are actually kind of disrespectful to fans and the characters of the universe.

Take Mockingbird. The writing on the book was never really good, and when it was canceled, the writer blamed fans and trolls, including the infamous "Ask me about my feminist agenda" shirt. She then went on to include things like "Progressive Ghost Pirates" for some cringe, but then she decided she wanted to screw with Bobbi and Clint's past. Bobbi was unique as a superhero in that she was a rape survivor, and the comic dealt frankly with the concept and what it can do to people. Bobbi confronted and defeated her rapist, the Phantom Rider, but in a very human moment, chose to let him die rather than save him. She lied about this to her husband Hawkeye, and when this lie was revealed, it tore their marriage apart, and it took a couple dozen issues for them to reconcile.

What the Mockingbird writer decided was that she wanted to "give Bobbi her agency back", and decided the way to do this was to remove the rape aspect of her backstory. Not through time travel or a handwave, but by instead making the entire rape backstory something Clint had made up, because Bobbi had instead willingly cheated on her husband with the Phantom Rider on purpose, then apparently murdered the Rider for reasons that weren't explained in the book, and they divorced because "Clint couldn't handle that I made my own decision". In short, instead of being rape survivor, Bobbi is now an adulteress who cheated on her husband, murdered her lover, and apparently Clint is somehow the person in the wrong.

Likewise, over in America Chavez's book, more than once the book has opened up with America stating that Kate Bishop is "the REAL Hawkeye". Though to be fair, America's got way too many problems for me to list here. Suffice to say it's probably one of the worst written books at Marvel, along with Squirrel Girl.

Meanwhile over in Thor, it's more complicated in that while they've had some good stories, there's also been an agenda that goes along with her book. The infamous scene with Absorbing Man and Titania was basically them Superboy Prime-ing anyone who wanted the classic Thor back. They made Creel out to be some misogynist (despite never showing such tendencies before) who also apparently had a wandering eye (despite being very devoted towards his wife everywhere else). Likewise, Titania has been trying to murder She-Hulk for decades and had no problem trying to kill other superheroes, but decides that She-Thor is so awesome and what she's doing so so difficult that she's going to surrender this one time and let She-Thor get a win for free.

Likewise, Odin gets painted as a raging asshole and he-man-woman-hater who unfairly picked on Jane, despite Jane being the one to break up with Thor. Oh, and the What If? that apparently had Jane as Thor originally? It had Jane and ODIN get married. Go figure.

And unlike Blue Beetle or the Flash, Thor gets pretty much crapped on constantly in that book while Jane gets constant emotional validation. She's mastered his hammer far faster and far better than he ever did, she fought Odin in a way Thor never could, so on and so forth.

Riri Williams is basically all of Jane-Thor's issues, but without the decent storylines. Riri is also revealed to basically have had everything handed to her on a silver platter, but then she took it to another level and actively stole from the college that gave Riri her scholarship. And to top it all off, her origin is essentially her demanding to be made a victim back in 1st Grade, getting upset when her teacher wouldn't let her play the victim card, and then badgering the poor teacher until she finally caved in and said "You'll never be Tony Stark". Riri's whole reason for doing what she does is essentially her playing oppression Olympics.

And it gets worse over in Champions where Riri gets upset that Tony outfitted another hero (a black hero, mind you) with Stark tech. And she and said hero talk about white privileged, despite Riri's background being one of nothing but privileged. It's not only agenda pushing, but hypocritical as well. And it would be one thing if she were ever called out on this, but instead she receives nothing but nothing but constant emotional support and validation from everyone.

Riri Williams is a BAD CHARACTER, one of several that Marvel has been flooding the stands with.

I've got no real problem with Spider-Gwen or Miles Morales. Spider-Gwen is basically an interesting costume design that was popular enough that fans wanted to see a character in it. If she were off having adventures like May "Mayday" Parker in her own alternate universe, there wouldn't be an issue. Instead, she's just kind of a bland character who is another of the many spider-heroes diluting the Spider-Man formula. In addition to Peter you've got Spider-Woman, the Scarlet Spider, Spider-Gwen, Miles Morales, Silk, Ben Riley, it's just nuts.

Miles Morales was, like Jaime Reyes, one of the positive character replacements, because Ultimate Peter Parker died a hero, and when Miles replaced him, Peter was still thought very highly of, even while Miles wanted to be his own character. Again, if he was in his own universe, there'd be no problem at all, and he can kind of work even in the 616 setting with some effort, though if they're going that route, they should just have him be "Kid Arachnid" like in the animated series.

Add to the fact that Marvel seems to be more about pushing their politics than telling good stories. MODOK was made to resemble Donal Trump. Secret Empire is basically one long storyline about how the wrong president won and how people have surrendered their country to evil. The Champions makes no difference between legal and illegal immigration. The Americops are essentially anti-police propaganda. Marvel Comics has become anti-escapism because they will not let you forget what their politics are and how you are bad person if you have the wrong politics. And it's often done by people, again, where hired for their politics rather than their writing chops.

So what we have is a lot of classic characters getting diversity replacements all at once, a crap ton of books being released, often with poor editing and done by writers who were hired for reasons other than writing skill, where the desire to push politics is more important than good storytelling, and with a segment of the creative staff that seems to be at war with their audience. According to some, Marvel has actually said they'd be okay with a small number of fans, so long as they were "the right kind of fans".

Is it any wonder that Marvel isn't doing so well, or that some people feel a specific demographic is being targeted?

But that's just my two cents.



And in an aside to all of the above, I have an issue with the kind of moral relativism we're seeing with some writers. Dan Slott has said he personally doesn't see any difference from Dr. Octopus trying to be a hero in Superior Spider-Man and Hawkeye. In Dan's mind, there's no difference between Hawkeye, a guy who was a criminal for all of a week before becoming an Avenger for 50+ years . . . and Otto Octavious, the guy who has been a thief, murderer and criminal mastermind for that same length of time, and would have caused more than one extinction level events if not for Spider-Man stopping him. Someone with that mindset should not be writing superheroes. Then again, more and more Otto comes off as Dan's self-insert hero.

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by Jabroniville » Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:14 am

Holy Hell- giant Ares reply. People are indeed passionate about this. Honestly, I wouldn't mind JaneThor, SamCap or RiriIron so much if it hadn't been all at once, and in so ham-handed a way. Sam replacing Cap makes sense as a legacy, but A) came right on the heels of BuckyCap, and B) came out alongside all of the other replacements. It came off very much like Marvel shouting "LOOK AT US! LOOK AT HOW NON-RACIST WE ARE! COME ENJOY OUR ALL-NEW, ALL-INCLUSIVE AVENGERS!!!" Like... heroes get replaced every decade or so. It's something we can accept.

Like I said, Al Ewing managed to make a whole team of minorities and have it WORK- you can use established characters and it'll still be good. You may have to stamp an "A" on it, but it can work.

Pretending that all of the offense is about race/gender is silly, because none of this even comes CLOSE to the disaster of Ben Reilly or Kyle Rayner, both of whom were publicly hated to a way bigger degree. Similar issues were at play, too (predecessors being shamed or exiled). The writer of Ms. Marvel (which has been well-received, even among the "Diversity-Backlash" stuff) pointed out the difference, and how poorly Marvel handled things by making Thor "Unworthy" and the like.

Now... the big push for these replacements isn't even my BIGGEST issue with Marvel. It's Event Fatigue, quickie-relaunches (it's REALLY annoying to have two Ultimates books so close together in such short runs) and ESPECIALLY the colossal glut of books that guarantees the lowest 20 will get cancelled.

I can't say anything about America Chavez, other than that she was the most forgettable character in Ultimates, which was otherwise really good. Jason Aaron wrote some fantastic stuff (Scalped was hit or miss, but I loved Wolverine and the X-Men), but I find it weird that he soapboxes so hard on his Marvel title, when his own Creator-Owned Vertigo book about how terrible the lives of Native Americans are is almost FREE of that stuff.

I'm pretty Liberal, and even prefer more diversity among heroes, but even I find Marvel's bias pretty tiring at times. Stan & Jack were Democrats, but they didn't preach about in CONSTANTLY. Wasn't it Stan who said "why make half of your potential audience angry?"

I gotta say, though, that I enjoy that we can talk about things here without it getting too heated, or looking over our shoulders to watch for Bans & Permabans. Compare this to SOME of the chats I saw at RoninArmy (remember "American Patriot"?). It feels like every part of the internet is caught up in the same "culture war" (even Disney Parks forums! They're changing the famous "Take a Wench for a wife!" scene and making the redhead into a Pirate Queen! And people are FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAKING.)

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by Scots Dragon » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:04 am

I honestly think there's a lot of misplaced blame here. I'm actually someone who interacts with the social justice communities on the internet pretty strongly, and honestly a lot of the complaints about Marvel coming from them are on some level very similar to several of the complaints here. The Hydra!Cap storyline is universally and overwhelmingly reviled, and viewed as an utterly disgraceful take on a character who was created to be the exact opposite of what Hydra stands for. There's not so much complaint about anti-Trump ideology and left-wing ideas pervading things, nor is there much of a complaint about any of the legacy heroes, but there's plenty of complaints about moral relativism, or characters being hijacked for pointless retcons and reboots.

A substantial amount of the support for these legacies also comes from the fact that people are starved for representation. It's not something you can really understand unless you've been excluded your whole life from having a variety of portrayals in the media, something that cishet white males have never had to deal with. There's actually kind of a consensus that several of the comic ongoings aren't all that good but are basically the only option available, and it's also pretty clear that a whole bunch of people just don't like Marvel any more as a result of the Hydra Cap thing and have made the move to DC Comics while only interacting with Marvel through the MCU.


Also I have to address the Anita Sarkeesian thing; the woman is continually harassed with death and rape threats, and the 'critique' of her was literally just a legion of people screaming for blood because she dared to talk about feminism using video games. And that's really all her videos are; it's pretty basic and oversimplistic Feminism 101 using video games as a lens, with some shitty elements in her own videos (the Women as Rewards video is pretty damn terrible) because her brand of feminism actually doesn't account for certain things. Ultimately she's just a milquetoast YouTuber talking about a pretty basic philosophical and sociological subject and using video games as examples, and not terribly well.

Hell, she never once advocates for censorship and even actually says that we should keep in mind that it's important to recognise the problems in the media we consume and enjoy while still being allowed to enjoy it.
Formerly known as Narsil on the ATT and Ronin Army forums.

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Re: Marvel "Legacy", plus other books being cancelled

Post by M4C8 » Wed Aug 16, 2017 2:54 pm

Scots Dragon wrote:
Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:04 am
I honestly think there's a lot of misplaced blame here. I'm actually someone who interacts with the social justice communities on the internet pretty strongly, and honestly a lot of the complaints about Marvel coming from them are on some level very similar to several of the complaints here. The Hydra!Cap storyline is universally and overwhelmingly reviled, and viewed as an utterly disgraceful take on a character who was created to be the exact opposite of what Hydra stands for. There's not so much complaint about anti-Trump ideology and left-wing ideas pervading things, nor is there much of a complaint about any of the legacy heroes, but there's plenty of complaints about moral relativism, or characters being hijacked for pointless retcons and reboots.

A substantial amount of the support for these legacies also comes from the fact that people are starved for representation. It's not something you can really understand unless you've been excluded your whole life from having a variety of portrayals in the media, something that cishet white males have never had to deal with. There's actually kind of a consensus that several of the comic ongoings aren't all that good but are basically the only option available, and it's also pretty clear that a whole bunch of people just don't like Marvel any more as a result of the Hydra Cap thing and have made the move to DC Comics while only interacting with Marvel through the MCU.


Also I have to address the Anita Sarkeesian thing; the woman is continually harassed with death and rape threats, and the 'critique' of her was literally just a legion of people screaming for blood because she dared to talk about feminism using video games. And that's really all her videos are; it's pretty basic and oversimplistic Feminism 101 using video games as a lens, with some shitty elements in her own videos (the Women as Rewards video is pretty damn terrible) because her brand of feminism actually doesn't account for certain things. Ultimately she's just a milquetoast YouTuber talking about a pretty basic philosophical and sociological subject and using video games as examples, and not terribly well.

Hell, she never once advocates for censorship and even actually says that we should keep in mind that it's important to recognise the problems in the media we consume and enjoy while still being allowed to enjoy it.
Some people seem to forget that comic books are entertainment and most people read the books to be entertained. Of course there are times when comics tackle political issues and yes that's important but recently it seems that whole titles are just a platform for rants by writers with extremist left views and what's worse is that some of their viewpoints are based on perceived notions that are not factually accurate. For instance, the whole 'All police are evil murdering racists' and all 'Young black men are misunderstood angels' narrative in the recent Falcon-Cap book is just insulting and doesn't represent the realty of the situation at all (60% of all people killed by the police in the US are white and 90% of black people killed in the US are killed by other black people)
Those of us who read for pleasure don't want to be continuously preached at which is why some fans have decided not to continue buying some titles which has led to their cancellation, which has then unbelievably led to accusations of racism.

I see many comments about representation and the ability of people to identify with characters but frankly they seem to be mostly just excuses trying to justify terrible decisions, race and gender should not be an indicator in your decision as to whether you like a character or whether you'll pick up a title, most long term fans have never had that mindset and yet are the ones being labelled bigots, it's disgustingly unfair and just untrue. I've always believed this about genuine fans but have only recently been able to point to tangible proof, after watching the literally hundreds of reaction videos to the trailers to movies such as Captain America: Civil War and Thor: Ragnarok I noticed that there were a huge number of black, Asian and female fans and not one was complaining about yet another movie based on a white male nor did any of them seem to have any trouble 'identifying' with the characters, they were all just ecstatic to see the heroes they love on screen.

As for representation as a whole, well again reality usually doesn't allow for what those in the social justice community want. Here in Britain for example we've had people decrying the lack of black faces on TV (Despite their being black presenters/actors in almost every TV show and advert)
The fact is that the nations that make up Britain are traditionally white nations, have been almost entirely white for thousands of years and even today Britain is predominantly white by a huge margin (86%) with black Afro-Caribbeans making up only 3% of the populations. Of course there are more white faces in the British media, that's not racist that's reality and it wouldn't be a truthful representation of the nation if that were different. Minorities living in western nations complaining about lack of representation in western based entertainment is akin to the Caucasian and black people living in Japan complaining about the overwhelmingly high number of Asian characters in Japanese media. Obviously if the handful of minority characters were all still racist cliches then yes I would definitely understand the argument about representation.

Buying comics should be treated like going to the movies, we should be able to chose whether we want to be informed or whether we want to be entertained and not vilified when we choose entertainment.

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