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Thursday, September 06, 2012 

Bendis never bothered to read past history of Avengers/X-Men

Marvel ran one of their own inside interviews with Brian Bendis, and he tells a little something that under better editors would disqualify him for the assignments he's getting:
Marvel.com: With the history of the Avengers before you, what did you—

Brian Michael Bendis: Wait, was there history? I’ve never read any of it [Laughs]. It was funny, I tweeted the other day, that I’ve been reading X-Men for 30 years of my life but doing research on the X-Men is like the DaVinci Code. You have to do a lot of deep research. And someone goes, “I never once saw you tweet anything about the Avengers about that. Did you read anything about Avengers before you started writing it?”

My point is that AVENGERS was one book in a straight line—it was much easier to read it all the way through. X-Men is more of a labyrinth.
And his stories are more of an insult to the intelligence. I'm sorry, but what he says is no excuse for the tommyrot he's bound to write when he takes up the X-Men next year. Besides, people like him are the ones responsible for turning X-Men into a labyrinth. Up to 1992, most X-Men history is competent enough; it was after Chris Claremont left that it really went into tailspin and some of the characters were saddled with bad writing and too many spinoff series were launched. But I wouldn't trust him to research even the history up to that period and make something good out of it.

He even says about Daredevil:
DAREDEVIL had a pretty strong statement at the time because he was [being] outed.
A strong stench is more like it. I can't remember if Matt Murdock's secret ID did become full public knowledge at the time or if it lasted, but that was one story done with the Man Without Fear that should never have been greenlighted.

And on the Avengers itself, he says about character casting:
Then Dan Buckley came up to me and said, “You can do whatever you want as long as Spider-Man, Wolverine, Captain America, and Iron Man are in that book that you pitched. You can fill the other slots with Luke Cage, Spider-Woman, whoever you want.” So I said, yeah, I think I got it.

And then I said, you know what I’m gonna do, I’m gonna blow up Avengers Mansion. I thought I was being cool, when all I was doing was going up to the playground and smashing other kids’ toys. I didn’t see it at the time, I thought I’ll blow up the mansion and everyone will go “Whoa, he blew up the mansion on the third page!”

“Disassembled” was this disaster movie starring the Avengers, which I thought was awesome. Other people thought it was awesome too, and other people were very, very angry at me. They’re still angry at me as if it happened yesterday.
But he doesn't mention why exactly. It's because of how he wrote it all at Scarlet Witch's expense, turning her crazy over the children she didn't get to raise (who were brought back in the "Children's Crusade"), and making her the sole menace at the time. It makes no difference if he finally reversed that particular plot point, because looked at on its own, the story was in very poor taste, with Hank Pym's smack at Janet Van Dyne from 1981 regurgitated in a most insulting way, and he added insult to injury when he wrote that Jan was killed during Secret Invasion. Ms. Marvel came off very badly too back in Disassembled.

And he even falls back on the same sleazy bragging he used a few years ago when he acted as though breaking other people's toys is a great thing to do. Nor does he show any real feeling for the core cast of the Earth's Mightiest Heroes, not even the flagship heroes he brought in all because, as he says, Buckley wanted it, which tells that he obviously didn't have the faintest idea how to market the book on its own terms without them.
Marvel.com: You’re talking about changing the status quo. We’ve heard your last issue of AVENGERS also changes the status quo; you’ve done it once, how do you do it again?

Brian Michael Bendis: Well, many years have gone by. This status quo has been around for eight years. It’s quite a lengthy amount of time for any status quo in any comic of any company. So it’s certainly a good time for me to wrap up certain story-lines, to make my final statement on some of these characters. Some characters will be moving on to a new chapter in their life, and other characters will be deciding what it means to be an Avenger. Not all the characters will survive this last story.
And that's why even the "finale" to his tenure should be avoided just as much as the beginning. I'm sure it does change the status quo, and not for the better at all. Just like I'm sure the next writer to take charge isn't bound to make any improvements.

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That's not surprising, given how both companies have this "to hell with continuity, I'm gonna write whatever I want" attitude.

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