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Saturday, June 03, 2017 

Scotland Herald admits something went wrong by the mid-80s

The Scotland Herald wrote a history article about DC's output, such as Wonder Woman, in preparation for the movie's opening, and it includes this interesting paragraph here:
By the 1980s the work of Frank Miller on The Dark Knight Returns and Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons on Watchmen had rebooted the very concept of the superhero genre. Not totally for the better. In their wake DC was ever ready to kill off characters if it thought it might lead to a sales boost. Superman himself was killed at one point. There was also a phone vote as to whether Robin (not the Dick Grayson version) should be killed off. The vote was yes.
I'm glad they've acknowledged a tactic that warped into one of the most horrific conducts in the decade to follow. But too bad they don't mention how the vote on Jason Todd's survival-or-not at the hands of the Joker was very narrow, yet Denny O'Neil decided to go through with the character's execution anyway, and later regretted precipitating a terrible obsession with disrespect for human life, all for the sake of sales stunts.

Now if only someone would think to write an op-ed stressing why the Big Two should stop killing off characters as though they're literally useless, and not be hostile to resurrections either. Then there could be some improvement.

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I think of Alan Moore’s run on Swamp Thing. He was supposed to have the titular character ultimate become the cross Jesus was crucified on, but this ending was nixed as being too controversial; while not violent, per se, it would have been interesting if this story could have been finished, without alteration. What would the ‘80s comics scene be like had story/drama driven things, and not simply sales/spectacle?

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