An Appreciation For Comics 2017 – Part Two
The improvement of the comic community on social media I have seen was a big step forward this year. There’s still a long way to go, but people openly pushing back against the toxic readers is all you can ask for right now. What makes a huge difference these days is when you can depend on people to speak up when those in the comic community are acting up. If you reject bigotry, misogyny, and racism, remind others that comics is an inclusive medium made stronger by the voices it amplifies. Nothing good comes out of bashing something you hate or that devolving into slandering the people behind it. When you talk about books you like, others will follow suit. That is how you get people to read the books you like and get the names out there that you think are worthy of the attention. Seeing more of this is always welcomed and more people trying to make a statement about this instead of engaging in arguments is great. No one wins once you engage in an argument, whether you really are offended or not. I shared many outstanding posts from creators that made my heart melt because they got the ball rolling here and everyone else was fired up enough to keep this going.
I don’t really know what to say new about Valiant these days. There really is not much that they can do wrong and I’m not saying that as some sort of fanboy either. I’m saying that as someone who has seen what they have to offer and find myself consistently impressed with their structure and choice of quality over quantity. Valiant above all will show that there is greatness to consistency, quality, and structure. There’s something for everyone in their forever changing line-up of books and all of them are for the most part welcoming to new readers. You might feel the need to read the volume before, but you could easily jump into a second volume and it will treat itself like a new story. Intro and all to make sure you know the character and their story. It also goes without saying that Valiant truly does care about their fans. They do so many collaborations and partnerships each year to add to the many ways you can collect and enjoy your favorite heroes. Including of course their upcoming webseries that actually has them teaming up with Batinthesun of all groups.
Dynamite is one of those publishers who are good at that one thing and make sure that they are at the top if you are looking for that kind of story. They prove that older and iconic heroes/stories do have a place with newer readers as well. I remember a time when I would never have given pulp hero books a second look and now whenever one releases I have to check it out. This is also including the stories involving their Gold Key heroes. Some may have flipped their lid when the big event this year changed a lot about those characters, but this is a new generation and they jumped into this with the determination to appeal to new readers while keeping a lot of what older readers know about these heroes at the core the same. Now I would only disappoint myself if I didn’t also give them credit for their push of their iconic female characters. A lot of things they have done as well are updated for them to move past what might not be attracting to female readers. A big step forward to show that they aren’t just making these books for guys to ogle at.
DC Comics found themselves taking charge this year with what it means to break your toys and put them back together again. Rebirth captures everything exciting about relaunching your favorite heroes, villains, and much more with refreshing takes and quality creative teams. I liked the New 52 admittedly, but I love more what they are doing with Rebirth. A lot of these stories are about getting back to the core of what we have loved about our favorite heroes and villains. This is all about reconnecting with these characters again which they have succeeded so far from the start of the relaunch to this point. I even give them credit that they haven’t lost us yet to big event that take you out of your stories. Obviously I might be speaking a bit soon since it has only been a year now, but this year specifically is the focus. This at the very least shows that they are listening to readers who right now want to just be able to enjoy the single stories they prefer than having to read other things connecting to keep up. This isn’t to say things have been perfect with this whole mystery involving the Watchmen, but it seems like that is a process we have to be patient with.
We wouldn’t be talking about comics for 2017 if there wasn’t something in here about TV/Movies. I personally have been excited because this is a good time to be a comic reader who is well-rounded. You have shows out there from Image, a show out from Archie, Vertigo, Marvel, DC, and you still have other publishers who are trying to make their move as well. People did let you down when allowing some of the movies this year to divide us, but that is not to say that there wasn’t a lot to enjoy. They still do disappoint when they think that everything is about Marvel/DC, but in time that should hopefully change as well with publishers like Image and Valiant tossing in their hats with some awesome movie announcements. Overall this was a good year for TV/Movies because whether people wanted it or not we are seeing a lot more diversity. These may be superhero stories, but these are people living in worlds reflecting our own. Its an amazing time to know that this is possible and there is still more to come.
Well that’s all for me and boy did it feel good to sit back and recall so much about what made this year great. The comics community can be the best ever when we can show our gratitude without simply naming books or creators who should be appreciated most days rather than this one time during the year.