Saturday, March 31, 2012

DC Firsts - The New 52 Recap

So let's recap the thirty three issues of the new 52 I read and reviewed.

ChangesNew ReaderWas it
Titlewell received?Friendly?good?
Justice LeagueYesYesYes
Action ComicsMixedYes Yes
All Star Western YesYesYes
Batgirl NoMixed No
Batman The Dark Knight Same Mixed Mixed
Detective Comics Same Yes No
Batman Same Yes Yes
Birds of PreyNoNoMixed
Captain AtomNoYesMixed
Demon KnightsMixedYesYes
Green LanternSameNoYes
Green Lantern New GuardiansSameMixedMixed
Savage HawkmanNoNoNo
Hawk and DoveSameNoNo
I, VampireYesYesYes
Justice League DarkYesNoMixed
Justice League InternationalSameMixedYes
Legion LostMixedNoNo
Mister TerrificMixedYesYes
Red Hood and the OutlawsNoNoNo
Suicide SquadNoMixedNo
Teen TitansMixedYesYes
Wonder WomanYesYesYes
TotalsYes - 7Yes - 18Yes - 16
No - 9No - 8No - 9
In the middle - 8In the middle - 7In the middle - 8
Same as before - 9

So as far as the changes go, my opinion is that about 38% of the titles that actually had noteworthy changes were for the worse. Overall, about 27% of the "New" 52 really was about the same as what it was before the relaunch.

In terms of being new reader friendly, more than half of the titles fell into that category, so it is a good start. 24% were clearly not however. That is almost a quarter of the titles reviewed. If the idea of the reboot was to entice new readers, that is probably too large a number of books that are not achieving the goal.

In the end, the most important thing is whether the product was good or not. Just under half fell clearly in that category. About 27% were not what I consider good. The rest were a mixed bag. Even if you factor out books that, under usual circumstances, I would be unlikely to take an interest in adding to my reading list (Action Comics, Blackhawks, Batwing, Detective Comics, Mister Terrific, Red Hood and the Outlaws, Suicide Squad), we're left with 13 out of 26 titles that I felt were actually good. So 26 titles I would probably be willing to read monthly under normal circumstances and I thought only half of those were actually good. That isn't really an acceptable result when you consider they turned over most of their line in an attempt to rejuvenate it and yet only 13 of 26 titles a long time, loyal reader would be willing to plunk down cash for actually hit the right note.

Yes, some of the changes turned out well. But I'm not really sure DC has helped themselves with their core readers in the long run. If there are not enough of the new readers (who showed up for the relaunch) sticking around, then DC may find all they really accomplished was to alienate some of the loyal readers who have been happily feeding their coffers for years and years and years.

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