A Love Story for the Ages

a love story

imaginationed by: x. "bug" wright
camera: kristina wright

Let it be known, for when Bug breaks into one industry or another, I'm the one that gave him his nickname. Enjoy life today.

Edit: Also, head over to Reason Is Treason and prepare to ENJOY it! Wicked Juan, I really love what you're doing with your blog right now.


This Week's Read Pile, or: Economy Sucks

First, did everyone pick up a copy of Locke and Key #2? Yes? Good. And how did everyone enjoy I Kill Giants? I know, right?!

Moving on, there's no specific comic review, since the economy blows and I opted to buy an AWESOME Megatron Mighty Mugg instead of my books (there was like, four this week anyway, I've cut back). And a copy of Mini Marvels: Secret Invasion with all art done by Chris Giarrusso. You and your kids will LOVE it, I highly recommend picking this up. Very clever, well done, funny and awesomely kid-friendly while still being entertaining for the Moms and Dads out there.

--spoilers for both Final Crisis and Secret Invasion, just in case you're that behind and there's also some spoilers (maybe?) about Batman Stuff--

So, I've been thinking about Final Crisis 'versus' Secret Invasion since we're pretty much all wrapped up on both now and the dust is . . . well, in some cases, still working on settling.

I think Secret Invasion did a better job. I don't think that Final Crisis did a bad job. I think that readers, when reading anything written by Grant Morrison, are intensely aware of all the levels he writes on. It's intimidating, even to people who 'get it'. It's awesome and brilliant. But readers are still going to be intimidated because they know how much they don't understand--there's a lot going on in these books, it isn't like Secret Invasion, where for the most part, what you read is what's going on and the themes and subplots and meaning behind it is pretty much out in front. This isn't to say it's simple, or written down, it's just a blunter style.

To approach my point, some people tend to react negatively when they're put in a situation where they feel stupid. Having to reread a series to 'get it' is frustrating for some and a treat for others. Remember how we're all different? Thought you might. This is what went 'wrong' with Final Crisis. In the fan's eyes, they feel it didn't cater to them since if you read such and such and so-and-so and what's-a-who-from-ten-years-ago it makes it a richer, deeper reading experience. Our wallets are a wee bit tight now and the idea of needing to buy four or so trades to feel 'complete' ticks people off. Even if Morrison said, repeatedly, 'No, seriously, you DON'T need to read all that if you don't want to', people felt forced by it, and this is in part a fault of all the 'tie-ins' to big event series. It's a form of 'event exhaustion' where people feel like they should have to pay for a few different books to get a complete view and while a good amount (shockingly good amount, actually) were really relevant, awesome tie-ins, some just weren't. Same goes for Secret Invasion, by the way, though they also did a pretty good job keeping it all relevant so far as I noticed.

Note: I absolutely think that you already should've owned those trades by Morrison.

It's interesting to watch people say 'Well, dude, nothing changed in Final Crisis and everything is different in Secret Invasion. Clearly Secret Invasion is the superior event'. I wonder if these are the same people who spend hours detailing why Star Wars/Star Trek is better than Star Trek/Star Wars.

Uh? What series are they reading? Aquaman's back (DUDE, THE AQUAMAN), Batman's lost in time, Superman can totally kick your ass doing Rock Band vocals, the Monitors are gone which means that the entire multiverse is going on completely unchecked, Mary Marvel sees the same flaws with Awesome Punky Hair that I do, Hawkgirl might love Hawkman this next time (I'd guiltlessly blackmarket my roommate's kidneys to be in a position to write that series, or maybe a 360), Barry Allen's back, the New Gods are gone-for-now-or-ever? and Martian Manhunter is dead. I probably missed some stuff as well, but that's what I can drum up off the top of my head.

But, when all the coins drop, I think that Secret Invasion delivered faster on the 'epic, world-changing totally-worth-your-cash event' than Final Crisis did. I like Final Crisis better, but in the end--and maybe it's the economy as well--people were frustrated by feeling like they needed Morrison's backstory, feeling like they needed to get absolutely everything in every issue to feel like they got their money's worth. It's easier to do with Secret Invasion, because like I wrote before, it's blunter.

If Morrison had written Secret Invasion, that's the one I would've liked better. I'll give you a minute to wrap your brain around the possibilities of that comic. I just love his stuff and all this Super Duper Hate for him is pretty silly. Which makes me think about Morrison's many Final Crisis related interviews, the tones and his opinions on the book, what he was trying to do with the book and so on, which leads to cutting some fans off because Morrison doesn't try to make excuses for writing what he wrote and isn't subtle about his frustration at having to explain the same thing a few different times. Is there a Morrison Remix out there, a la Christian Bale? Please?

People forget that it's actually okay not to get something completely, or they just aren't comfortable with knowing that, frankly, they're Not As MultiSmart As This Guy--this is a really deep story but on every single level, even the most shallow, there is a complete storyline being told. I really don't know a lot of writers who can do this. Alan Moore.

All in all, Secret Invasion and Final Crisis both really knocked it out of the park for me, and considering all the crap that I, and everyone else, are worried about right now: job, houses, cars, the future, having two wicked excellent stories shaking up the Worlds As We Knew Them for Marvel and DC is exactly what we needed.

Amusingly enough, I'm more excited about Marvel titles than I have been since they dropped the ball on the awesome No More Mutants deal a few years back. Expect to see more Marvel reviewed/discussed/whatevered here than before, so as far as my wallet's concerned, Secret Invasion succeeded. I went into the series making fun of SkrullsSkrullsSkrulls and left it being pretty impressed and satisfied with the results.

And here's hoping that both companies follow through on the punches those storylines delivered, because that's the real reason people get so goddamn amped up about them online. It's not the story, it's the effects of the story. We want new, we want it to stay the same, we want completely different we want it all safe and old we want we want wewantwewant. God, I'm glad I'm not Joe Quesada or Dan Didio. I'd've shot the lot of you and then made you apologize for it on national television.

So here's hoping people stop being such douchebags about one company or the other (I write, knowing full and well I'm still snotty over the Spider-Man Thing). For instance: Morrison announced on his part two Final Crisis Exit Interview at Newsarama that he's back on Batman in June (also, funny dig at DC about Batman's 'death')--and that he wants to write a multiverse story that may be out around 2010. Immediately the commenters disregarded all the events in the upcoming Battle of the Cowl event. Which is stupid. You're reading an action drama, people, isn't it all about the story and the awesome one-two punches? How is Battle of the Cowl in anyway obsolete just because Morrison is taking the reins back this summer? We all already know Batman's trapped in the past somewhere--what's important and awesome is that everyone thinks he's dead. What'll be cool to see is where everyone goes with that, how his boys change and what happens to Gotham in the meantime.

And in sticking with my New Years Resolution to approach things less fatalistically, I'm going to let my hopes puff up and see where they go with it. And this is an intensely mentally drifting post, since I'm still getting into my comic-writing-habits.

This whole spiel, by the way, was inspired by an awesome post that Jeff over at Alert Nerd wrote and posted this morning. Go there!