Wednesday, September 07, 2011

R.I.P. ACTION COMICS & DETECTIVE COMICS

Today is a sad day. A sad day for me, atleast. Because today is the end of a very long era. Today sees the release of a new ACTION COMICS #1 and DETECTIVE COMICS #1, part of DC Comics' "New 52" Reboot. It's not the first DC Reboot, nor will it be the last I imagine. However, it is the first time in 70+ years that Action Comics' & Detective Comics' long running numbering has been stopped.

Detective Comics #1 was first published in 1937 and Action Comics #1 (Superman's 1st appearance) was published in 1938. Batman's 1st appearance was a year later in 1939 with Detective #27. These two books came out during The Great Depression and continued to endure through other social & economical tough times. Every month, a new issue of Action & Detective would hit the stands. Generation after Generation, they continued to be published. They are/were the two longest running comic books in history! My child's great-great grandparents were alive when these books for hit the stands. The books' high issue number was a testament to the longevity of the characters. But no more. Action Comics' & Detective Comics' final issue, since debuting in the 1930s, was last month. The books were cancelled and are now being rebooted with new #1's.

Since the late 1930s, the two books have been going strong through The Golden Age, Silver Age, Bronze Age, Copper Age, [the current] "Modern Age" and several DC Reboots. With LESS than 100 issues to go, Action Comics was set to not only be the first superhero comic book ever, but to be the first comic book to reach issue #1,000!! ONE THOUSAND!!! Can you imagine?! Well, unfortunately imagining is all we'll be able to do because we're not going to get there. Foreshame on you Dan DiDio, Jim Lee, Geoff Johns and those others involved in the decision for taking it upon yourselves to end 2 books that have endured for 5+ generations.

Reboots happen, its the way of the Comic World (The Silver Age was a reboot of the Golden Age after all). But what we had with Action Comics & Detective Comics' long lasting numbering was something special. It showed the history and endurance of these characters and this genre they created. It showed us a comforting constant even through dark times. They were an ongoing Legacy that generations could be a part of and share together. They were proud flags of the Comic Book Medium. But no more.

While the TITLE NAMES themselves continue, it is the loss of the NUMBERING that saddens me here. I'm sure when the month arrives that Action Comics #1,000 would have hit the stands, DC will make a note of it... or even change the issue number to #1,000 for just that month... but sorry, it doesn't count - that's cheating. Today Action Comics #1 hits the stands. Its a reboot and renumbering. It's an entirely new book now that shares the name of what was. If it wants to hit issue #1,000 it must earn it and continue to be published for the next 70+ years.

It's a sad day for me today.... not only as a comic fan, but as a fan of pop culture, history and legacy. DC has been saying in their ads & interviews, "This isn't your Father's Superman!".... and that's a bummer because my Superman was also my Father's, my Grandfather's, and my Great-Grandfather's Superman. And that was something special.

9 comments:

D. said...

dude, you made me tear

Jon said...

I'm right there with you. I remember when I was younger being excited at the realization I would alive to see issue 1,000 of both comics. But it's a testament to the modern era that legacy means less and is generally disposable.

Phil Freeman said...

I approve. DC needs to get their crap together.

I'm pretty close to never buying one of their main lines again. I still enjoy Elseworlds (Red Son!) and well written miniseries (All-Star Superman, Hush, Long Halloween, etc).

Just explain to me, why are so many reboots necessary? I bought into Infinite Crisis and Final Crisis, hoping for some radical but good changes, and all we got was change for change's sake.

TimPro said...

Won't they just go back to their original numbering after all this over?

Anonymous said...

Pathetic,..I'm sick of everyone trying to be "new and awesome, for a younger hip crowd",...if the stories are good, people will read them,..and they will remain timeless. This is just cheap, and nothing more than a marketing ploy. You Suck DC ( and u too Marvel...)

1000 issues,...1000 issues,..wow,...way to go DC........

Gianmaria Caschetto said...

It's sad. Yes.
I'm waiting for the day both DC and Marvel will no longer see their characters as properties but as an heritage (I hope that will also happen with a certain Mr. Lucas).

On the other hand I understand DC and Marvel, as well as Lucas, are supposed to run a business and not a cultural foundation.

Anonymous said...

agreed. DC and Marvel are both Businesses now,..even corporations. So you can't have your cake and eat it to. in todays climate the debate of profit vs. public responsibility is incredibly large. So it's the hypocrisy of the two that maddens fans. These two still wave the flag of "creativity, artistry, avant-guard " and in a lot of cases, moral story telling. When in fact they are not. they are a machine that looks at profit margins to determine the focus of their stories, artists and "character development". even to the point they will disregard legacy, and tradition in order to turn a buck.So yes,..go ahead and make money, but don't pretend your something your not. DC and Marvel have taken to Hollywood approach to making money. quick, easy formulaic, cliche' stories that latch on to what ever the 'hot' issue/event/character is at the current moment and over hype it for publicity in order to get as many of the masses in the door to sell as many ticket opening weekend so that their share holders can profit.

Fred Van Dyke said...

Wow, what a loss. Well said, Jim. I, too, teared up a little.

NINE9INCHE STUD said...

This new reboot DC Comics line is just unreadable crap.It's supposed to tie in the movie projects.Great time to jump with electronic devices folks,they said.No great time to jump off and staff clear of DC Comics period.