Dave Galanter
December 1st 1969 - December 12th 2020
He was loved.

Golden, Silver, and Bronze Ages >> View Post
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Ed Love

Location: North Carolina
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 892
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Location: Prague, Bohemia
Member Since: Tue Apr 06, 2010
Posts: 1,660
Subj: Re: Marvel going forward after the bronze age(quite OT)
Posted: Thu Oct 22, 2020 at 03:04:52 pm EDT (Viewed 87 times)
Reply Subj: Marvel going forward after the bronze age(quite OT)
Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 at 08:18:08 am EDT (Viewed 102 times)

Previous Post

just kicking around an idea or two. doesnt really fit on this board but I'd like to get any other opinions if possible.

I stopped reading comics in the early 90s and never really came back. when I did, I contented myself with silver and bronze age books, mostly because, it felt like all the good stories had been told. Im a bit of a proponent of the idea that characyers can only have a finite set of adventures in their lives. There are only so many times spider-man can fight Electro or Doc Ock before it becomes weariningly repetative.

But this introduced the problem of what to do going forward. companies still want to sell comics. I was thinking of possible solutions. These are some of mine, set in the 90s since thats when I felt things really fall off.

1. Replace older heroes with younger new heroes

What I consider the "New Warriors" approach. The idea is bring in a younger generation of heroes, either existing ones and/or new ones to slowly supplant the older ones.

to me the advantage of this is that we get new characters and new modern adventures and hopefully the older heroes can retire gracefully. Spider-man gets to retire with mary Jane. Bruce banner gets cured. etc. I like it because it gives our heroes what they have never had, a happy ending.

the downside is that it would be hard to make the new heroes as popular as the old.

2. Move on to the 2nd generation heroes:

Or the "Spider-girl" approach. Here we get generational heroes to replace their parents.

It has the same implications as above but keeps closer ties to the originals.

3. Carry on

I feel this is one of the options marvel chose, meaning we have 60 years of spider-man stories with Peter still in his 20s. Honestly, Im not sure if there are enough days in the year to match his adventures at this point

4. reboots

This is kind of what happened in the 90s and after. Creating all these alternative universes makes continuity, one of marvels main appeals, redundant. But I think the MCU used this well to cherry pick good stories.

5. replace heroes with new, younger versions

This is another option marvel went with and maybe the worst one. So instead of one spider-man you have many versions, none of which could be as popular as the original. Rather than create an original character, they just replace heroes with shadowy versions of them. Of course the originals havent gone away, so we have the worst of all worlds.

Were there any other options in your opinions? Personally I would have prefered version 1 or 2 from my options. But I'm sure sales would have suffered with either option. But I think comic sales died off anyways.

Not a big fan of any of those options really. I think part of the problem in the 90s was overkill. Batman, Superman, Spider-man were appearing in about 5 titles a month or more apiece. Then you had Wolverine, Punisher, Ghost Rider appearing everywhere. That's going to tax the stories for any character. Another problem that began in the 90s was suddenly Image and "character ownership". Not so much that either was a bad thing, but you did seem to see a development of a creator coming onto a title and introducing some interesting characters. Those characters might get a mini-series or one-shot, a guest spot in the flagship team for a story or two... and completely disappear when their creator is no longer working at the company. DC had a couple of annual events whose goal was to create a bunch of new characters. Many were never seen again after those events. A few would become cannon fodder. A couple had some small success but have not been seen or referenced since then. Unless to be killed off yet again.

I do think things like New Warriors is good. Not so much as replacing the old characters, but introducing some new characters, new teams, new stories to be told. But, again, the companies need to resist the urge just to kill them off or wipe them out of existence in the next event to come along. Sometimes, it takes time and just the right moment and creative team to get a character going.

I am also a fan of putting characters on sabbatical. While I haven't liked how Marvel did it with the Falcon, I think the idea of a black soldier temporarily becoming Captain America could be a powerful story idea to explore. BUT DON'T DO IT AS A REPLACEMENT OF STEVE ROGERS. This is something that they get wrong almost every time. The idea is NOT to replace Steve as Cap or even advertise that. From the onset, it should be obvious that Cap is for some reason unable to publicly continue his duties and this guy is stepping up to the plate. Grow him as a character and then launch him with his own identity down the road. Sort of like how DC handled the "Death of Superman". We all knew Superman wouldn't die for real, but there were some good and interesting stories with the new characters that starred in the books for awhile.

Or you could just let some of the established characters and books disappear for awhile in order to develop some new ones. Instead of being desperate for story ideas and killing off a large portion of a character's supporting cast, replacing them with a minority (supposedly for good), etc; howabout just not publish their book? Let it end for a little while and explore some new characters. Try canceling Batman. Completely. He doesn't appear in JLA, Outsiders, Batgirl, etc. To fill the gap, you don't launch another Bat title but someone different such as Ragman, Bronze Tiger and Richard Dragon, the original Phantom Lady transported to present day, etc. Groom and develop other properties.

I especially think that tactic could be done with villains. Put a temporary moratorium on villains, especially after a big story. Once Busiek and Perez did their Ultron story, the character should have been retired until someone actually had a good idea for the character. I could probably go for several years without seeing the Joker again. I would love to see a new creative team come on board of the FF and be told, "for the first two years, you cannot use or reference Galactus or Doctor Doom." X-Men: No Magneto, Phoenix, Sentinels or references to Days of Future Past. Daredevil: No Kingpin or ninjas.

And, for some characters like Hawkman, Atom, Martian Manhunter, and Aquaman, maybe accept that they aren't designed for open-ended ongoing series nowadays. But, they are value added characters. The universe is richer for having them. So instead of constantly trying to change them into unrecognizable characters to make them fit the mold of ongoing series, take them at their best status quo and put them as mainstays and semi-regular guest-stars in other books such as the Justice League and roll out mini-series and one-shots when a writer actually has a good story for those characters and not just characters that somewhat resemble them.

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