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Wednesday, July 10, 2019 

Sugarcoated EW article about new money-wasters

Entertainment Weekly spoke about new upcoming comics they consider recommendable, but coming from them, everything's as sugary as can be expected. For instance, their comments on Jonathan Hickman's House and Powers of X:
Once upon a time, the X-Men were the dominant superhero franchise at Marvel. Over the last decade and a half, the Avengers have steadily taken the throne thanks to a multitude of factors (from writer Brian Michael Bendis’ masterful stewardship of the comic franchise to the wildly successful MCU movies) but now writer Jonathan Hickman has a master plan to restore mutants to prominence.

[...] This is Hickman’s first Marvel comic in a few years after bringing his masterful Avengers and Fantastic Four runs to a head with Secret Wars. Superhero comic fans should take solace that Hickman recently told EW he feels his writing is now better than ever.

“I showed up in comics about 10 years ago. I had never been published or written anything professionally. So I have been learning on the job to be a writer for that entire period of time,” Hickman tells EW. “Honestly, leaving Marvel when I did, being done with Secret Wars and exiting the stage, that’s probably about when I felt really comfortable for the first time as a writer, in control of my craft. I spent a couple years working on independent projects and sharpening all my tools. I certainly feel like I’m writing better than I ever have, and I’m in control of it as a discipline. As somebody who has not felt that way, I feel like this is really the start of me doing work I’m really, really proud of.”
My main issue is their sugarcoating Bendis' resume. The man messed up Avengers big time, for the sake of rearranging them with his mostly street-level vision of what the Earth's Mightiest Heroes should be, put Scarlet Witch in a horrible position, along with other Marvel maidens, and they predictably won't acknowledge any of that, which proves EW's not as "woke" as they'd like everyone to think.

And didn't Hickman first get into comics with an Image item called The Nightly News in the late 2000s? I'm not sure why that doesn't count as something "professional". I do notice, however, that they brought up a would-be sequel to that 1984 crossover that began the downward spiral for shared universes, Jim Shooter's Secret Wars. Which Hickman did at the time Axel Alonso was EIC, and when they were doing an "initiative" called "Marvel NOW". The audience would do well not to approach this with confidence, considering Hickman willfully took on the job of writing a company wide crossover, to say nothing of a story that could be meant to affect the shared universe as a whole. That kind of path doesn't work well, when everything's meant to be influenced in ways that aren't organic and self-contained.

They also comment on Mark Russell's Second Coming:
Now here’s one that’s been in the news a bit. Second Coming, the story of Jesus returning to Earth in order to hang out and trade tips with a Superman-like hero, was originally supposed to be published by DC Comics, but after a wave of negative publicity, the creators requested the rights back from that publisher and moved to relative newcomer AHOY.

People have disagreed about the meaning of Jesus’ teachings since he was alive, so perhaps it’s no surprise that a series like this would draw scorn from some. But anyone who’s read Russell’s past comics — such as The Flintstones and Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles — knows that he’s an extremely thoughtful writer. For example, yes I did say The Flinstones just now; under Russell’s stewardship, the town of Bedrock became one of comics’ most potent political allegories of the last few years. [...]
Yep, so "thoughtful" he'd turn everything inside out, exploiting old animated TV shows for the sake of LGBT and leftist propaganda, instead of conceiving his own separate allegories. What a shameful whitewashing of his resume alright. And proof EW doesn't care about the original products or their reputations.

They even pointed to a new Jimmy Olsen starring vehicle, written by Matt Fraction:
Something is up with Superman. DC’s big event comic this year is Event Leviathan by Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev, and Superman is at the center of it. While the Man of Steel deals with that strange new threat, two of his closest allies are getting their own solo comics starting this month. The new Lois Lane series is written by Greg Rucka and therefore not to be missed, but Jimmy Olsen brings the titular character back to his zany roots. It’s an absolute blast.

Modern superhero fans probably know Jimmy Olsen primarily as a mostly-useless redheaded photographer and/or the strapping “James” incarnation played by Mehcad Brooks on Supergirl, but back in the day he was known not so much for his Daily Planet photography as he was simply “Superman’s Best Friend,” who was constantly getting into colorful misadventures before getting rescued by Superman. The first issue of the new series throws back to that type of storytelling, putting Jimmy through a ringer of several different escapades before pointing at a potentially darker mystery.

There’s one particular page from this issue (featuring Jimmy diving to Earth from space) that could very well make you cackle every time you look at it. This is a comic to be treasured.
Coming from a writer who already had some quite pretentious moments at Marvel, it's bound to be treasured by social justice advocating leftists. EW's assertion Jimmy's seen as "useless" is also a classic mislead, obscuring any and all writers who've failed to provide him with impressive characterization. And recommending Rucka is another letdown - it's not just his politics that are alienating, it's also his shoddy writing, which was never as good as the MSM would have one believe it was. Worst, he's become a censorship advocate of late. One more reason why both his and Fraction's work should be avoided at this point.

And there's another example of EW taking the establishment side, letting pretentious creators off the hook for their mistakes, and demonstrating why they're no longer relevant as a showbiz magazine.

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  • From Jerusalem, Israel
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