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Monday, January 30, 2012 

Billy Batson was once known as Fawcett/DC's Capt. Marvel...

But now, in a new rendition by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank, they're throwing out that very name and just calling him "Shazam" now, because of possible legal problems. I can guess what's happening on that front: Marvel, which kept DC from officially using the name Captain Marvel for many years because they used it on the books they published with Mar-Vell of the Kree, is clearly leading to this out of childish hostility (even though both companies alike are now run by some of the most awful people possible), which was also a reason why DC hardly ever used the word "mutants" to describe some of their own superpowered characters, instead substituting the word "metahuman". But DC is still demonstrating that they're very weak in standing firm on what names and words they can use if they're changing anything just to avoid legal issues.

That said, I don't think Johns understands the characters and how they work when he tells the following:
Nrama: Then answer the question this way. When you were putting a fresh, new take on Shazam, what's the core essence of the character that you couldn't change?

Johns: Well, the core of the character, obviously, is surrogate family. I mean, it's easy. That's what he's all about. The same with wish fulfillment. And tied into his wish fulfillment, even if he won't admit it, is a surrogate family.
The core of the Big Red Cheese is wish fulfillment, not surrogates, but in any case, with his past track record - particularly as a solo writer - it's an almost foregone conclusion Johns wouldn't be able to handle family relations anyway, assuming he even does at all. Another problem is that they're changing the costume, so I'm not sure if even that many long time readers will find much to look forward to.

The title of the story Johns is writing is "The Curse of Shazam" but the only real curse is that people like him are running the show.

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It's obvious that Johns doesn't care one bit about DC's history and legacy. It's obvious the company in general doesn't care about its legacy or what we fans think.

Carl

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