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Thursday, December 05, 2013 

Reboot syndrome could hurt comic movies, but what about the comics?

A writer for The Motley Fool says comics will hurt themselves if they keep on with reboots. But he also goofs:
The latest to indulge in "reboot syndrome," as Tim calls it? Marvel, which is relaunching Wolverine, the tough-as-nails mutant Hugh Jackman has given life to in six X-Men films. Writer Paul Cornell and artist Ryan Stegman will emphasize the "not very nice" elements of the character in the book, which is due in stores in February.

Tim says the relaunch is one of the many gimmicks plaguing the comic book industry in the wake of Time Warner's (NYSE: TWX) successful reboot of the entire DC Comics Universe in 2011.
Quit the naive thinking, please, and be honest. It's been no more successful than the infinite crossovers both companies have foisted upon the public. The sales charts bear this out. What is the whole point of calling any reboot a success if it's only been done for publicity's sake? And why no meat and potatoes look at how terrible the writing quality is for DC's modern output, before and after the New 52 reboot?

At least he alludes to a good point we can make that the revived Valiant is blowing it by turning to crossovers just like Marvel and DC are. Why did the people who bought the rights to the older properties do it if they really wanted to entertain? Publishing a line-wide crossover only undermines the impression they really want to draw newer readers and they'll be able to get into all titles they're publishing without difficulty.

Which brings us to the most vital point: while the reboots could affect Hollywood adaptations, the main victim is the comics themselves. The home medium doesn't count? Nice going there, worrying about the movies more than the medium that started it all.

On a related subject, I see that model/actress Gal Gadot's been chosen to play Wonder Woman in the upcoming Superman vs. Batman movie. On the surface, that might sound great, but the whole premise reeks of a plot that would appeal more to comic readers than a wider audience, and this suggests they don't have the confidence WW could sell as a movie of her own. I also want to comment on the following statement by the film's director:
“Wonder Woman is arguably one of the most powerful female characters of all time and a fan favorite in the DC Universe,” director Zack Snyder said of the casting.
True, WW stands out as the heroine with the best super-strength in the DCU, and she's a favorite of many a fan, but she's not the only one. What about Black Canary? Or Hawkgirl? Or Zatanna? Even Wonder Girl/Donna Troy was a favorite for many years. Come to think of it, a heroine doesn't have to be a fan favorite per se to make a clever choice for movie casting. There's also minor heroines like Vixen, Jade, Jesse Quick, and to be sure, plenty of supporting cast members for the DCU who could be great choices for casting roles.

From what they tell about their plans to build up for a Justice League movie, it sounds like it'll end up being a select seven, like what's been going on since the late 90s, and there may be no lesser heroes in the main mix. I think that's a mistake. If the Avengers movie could have Black Widow - a minor player in the MCU - as a member, why not have someone like Black Canary or Vixen in the Justice League movie? It could work out better by not being too obvious in their casting choices. Though it still wouldn't guarantee the script and performances would work well.

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"On the surface, that might sound great, but the whole premise reeks of a plot that would appeal more to comic readers than a wider audience..."

Why? What do you know about the premise that would make more sense to a wider audience?

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  • From Jerusalem, Israel
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