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Keith Giffen: grabbing some Lanterns and giving us DC Cosmic

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I'm suddenly looking forward to January.

First, we get Green Lantern New Guardians Annual #1, where we're introduced to a new Green Lantern named Jediah Caul. It's by Keith Giffen and Scott Kolins.

That'd be him.

Then we get Threshold #1. Each issue will have a 20 page main story, and a 10 page backup. The main story will be titled "The Hunted" by Keith Giffen and Tom Raney, and the backup will be a Larfleeze story by Keith Giffen and Scott Kolins.

I highly suggest reading the full interview with Giffen here: He's going to be weaving DC's used and unused scifi characters in and out of this story like he did with Marvel Cosmic, but the Lanterns are the centerpieces for right now.

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I have a feeling that the Larfleeze backup will be keeping this book afloat. I don't think people in general care about DC cosmic as a whole, with the exception of the Lanterns. And even then, throwing random lanterns into a book doesn't mean it's going to work. Like REBELS. The difference with Marvel cosmic is that those characters had a strong following already, they had really great concepts to start with. DC's cosmic is just kinda muddy, political and boring.

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Marvel's cosmic characters were incredibly niche before Annihilation. The closest thing to "popular" they had was Nova, and they could never settle on something to do with him that worked for very long.

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Are you considering all of Marvel's cosmic? I mean, even if you forget about the Shi'Ar, and the Kree, and the Skrulls, and the Badoon, and the Brood, and even if you throw out Galactus, and Silver Surfer and all the other heralds, you still have Thanos, the Infinity Gauntlet and all the other characters associated with just that.

But that's really the key. Marvel's cosmic has been intertwined with it's regular universe for so long, it's VERY well established. Most people who've read Marvel comics have heard of and like at least a handful of cosmic characters in that universe.

Conversely, it's not like Captain Comet is really close buds with Superman. Lady Styx has never caused any problems for Batman. REBELS and LEGION mostly do their own things, and those series regularly fail. Green Lantern is the only really cosmic stuff that works for DC.

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I have to agree with Jim on this.

I have a lot of friends that buy nothing except the cosmic stuff from Marvel, and that has been a long term thing.

The fact that their cosmic stuff is tied into two of their most successful, long-term properties (the Fantastic Four and the X-Men) has made solid fans.

Maybe the Nova Corps has not be super popular in the long-term, and the Guardians of the Galaxy certainly got a huge bump courtesy of Annihilation, but those are just a couple of the established cosmic-centered characters that Marvel has.

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That's the thing. It used to be that the only big popular Marvel Cosmic guys were the likes of Galactus, Silver Surfer, Thanos, and the Skrulls, exc. Then Keith Giffen helped to orchestrate Annihilation, and all of a sudden, lower tier Marvel Cosmic characters that nobody but REALLY hardcore fans cared about became popular and got the spotlight for years, right up to today. Starlord, Rocket Racoon, Groot, Captain Universe, Nova, Gamora, Quasar, Bug, Mantis, Drax the Destroyer 2, and a whole lot more C and D list characters who might have risen as high as B list for a moment here and there before falling back down, all of a sudden got elevated and became the face of Marvel Cosmic.

They took obscure space characters that few people knew or cared about and made them popular fan-favorites by way of some cool stories. Now it's DC's turn.

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There's two more MAJOR differences.

Up till now, Marvel's cosmic has run the gamut from wars to romance to annihilation to comedy. DC's cosmic is used primarily for wars and other serious stuff. Aside from the GL stuff, one of the very few enjoyable DC cosmic stories came from 52, with the heroes trying to get home. That's the highlight from decades of cosmic stories. Marvel didn't just get an overhaul and then put out awesome stuff. They had a huge great foundation to build on already. DC has Green Lantern, and every time they force a GL in just to get people interested, we get Rebels. Or Hardcore station.

The other major difference? DC is doing this without Abnett and Lanning, who were just as important if not more so than Giffen.

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The baseline is the same: here's a bunch of cosmic characters nobody cares about, change that with good stories. That's what Anihilation was, that's why the modern-day Guardians of the Galaxy is about to get its second ongoing. So what if DC hasn't done it before? Something can't happen unless they've done it already?

And R.E.B.E.L.S. was great, I don't know what you're complaining about.

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You're disregarding the facts. One, they don't have the same talent. Two, they're not starting at the same starting point. Marvel's cosmic started out better and went from there. DC's cosmic started out crummy and never got better. It's not that DC has never done it before, it's that everything they've created up till now has never caught on. Marvel has had a bunch of fun cosmic stories that fans look back on with love. Infinity Gauntlet, Kree/Skrull War, even the Dark Phoenix saga. Now look at the DC cosmic stories. Odyssey. The Rann/Thanagar War. Stories that fans would rather forget. Marvel didn't just take a handful of characters nobody cared about. They took fan favorite niche characters and put them on a team. They couldn't support solo books, but they thrived as a team. DC doesn't have that. It will be so much more difficult for DC to jump start their cosmic.

Additionally, Marvel cosmic exploded out of an event that went really well. Like if DC had started a team book that made its debut in Sinestro Corp War or Blackest Night. But DC is spinning it out of an Annual. We all know how great that turns out. And they attached it to Larfleeze stories because they know it's going to need help.

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You're giving the lower tier Marvel Cosmic characters WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY too much credit. All of the ones that rose to popularity with Anihilation are the ones that most people didn't give a crap about before it. You realize Green Lantern was in a similar boat before Rebirth, right? All of a sudden, a writer with a good story in him comes along, and all of a sudden Green Lantern's popular.

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Arghghgh! Girls, girls you're both pretty.

Can I go home now?


Last edited by EarthGBilly on Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:54 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Green Lantern always had some amount of popularity. Rebirth just brought him up to the same level as batman and Superman. I would say Wonder Woman, but her spot in the trinity is more out of some sort of obligation. If you can barely support one book on your own, you're not Trinity. Bottom line.

What it comes down to is Marvel's take on cosmic has historically veered towards the fantastic, big gritty wars, tons of action, lots of villains and hunts for power, romance, it's just fun. Look at Quasar in the 90's. That was fun! The Shi'ar, fun. Infinity Gems, awesome and everybody knows about them.

DC starts off a story about some boring villain that's already in power, and then the heroes trying to survive. Starro, Lady Styx, New Gods. I mean, with REBELS, one of Dox's main goals was to build a company that gets things done for other races. That is fucking boring! You're in space and anything can happen, and you focus on a character who wants to make money? Gimme a break. I literally read an issue of REBELS that had the good guys setting up machinery on a planet for another alien race. SERIOUSLY? I don't even blame Bedard so much for that, because he's working with characters that WOULD do that.

Even now, the new set up is set in some new location where - you guessed it - some brand new big bad is already in power, and the heroes have to survive. Honestly, I'm sick to death of hearing about some NEW treaty the Guardians signed to stay out of a sector. Is that their go-to now? In a decade, are we going to find out there's like a fifth of the Universe carved off from what the Guardians actually watch over?

Maybe space politics interests you, but unless they tell fun stories instead, this is going to bore me to tears. Tears because I'll have to buy it for the Larfleeze story.

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I don't know what random issue of R.E.B.E.L.S. you read, but the series has more in common with the original Star Wars trilogy than it does with the average TNG episode. Dox's security company is more or less there to provide a robot army to the series villain who comes in and takes it from him, and we get to see a good chunk of the series be about Dox and his rag tag team sprint across the stars trying desperately to keep that badguy from coming into power, even though they have virtually no numbers or resources by comparison. And even then, it's not the cleche straightforward version of what you'd expect out of this conflict. Bedard knows his lead character is a genius, and uses it well.

The idea that DC's cosmic characters largely haven't built fan bases yet is completely irrelevant. An issue could come out tomorrow that makes some random character the biggest thing that everybody's talking about. You want to say they can't gain popularity because they haven't already? Have fun in your bubble.

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Larfleeze? Shit...does this mean I'm going to have to buy this series now?

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Yes, yes it does.

In other news:

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