It’s been a long time since I read comic books regularly. I’d say I stopped somewhere around 2005 or so. I didn’t really want to stop, but paying things like rent, car insurance, and electric became more important than seeing who Daredevil was battling that month. Eventually, I got used to not reading them, but I still would get nostalgic every once in a while and want to revisit my old books. Unfortunately, I had run out of room at my apartment and gave them to a friend of mine as a wedding present. I now kick myself for that decision.
A few years ago, my wife and I started going to the library regularly (which you all should do because the library is awesome). After going a couple of times, I finally realized that they had a comic book section. There were quite a few graphic novels and collections of comic book issues. Most of what they had was on the newer side, so they didn’t have any of the books I used to own. It did give me the opportunity to catch up on some things, though.
The first thing I did was read the Mark Waid run on Daredevil. It was pretty good, but it did have some not so great moments. After that, I moved on to my next favorite character, Nightwing. That meant The New 52.
Prior to this, I had heard nothing but bad things about The New 52, most of it from die hard DC fanatics. So, I was expecting the worst when I started reading it. I didn’t get to read all of the Nightwing run (I’m pretty sure I only missed the ending of it), but it wasn’t too bad. It wasn’t as good as the old books, but it wasn’t atrocious either. Then, I read what Nightwing turned into, which was the series Grayson….
Grayson was a steaming pile of pus-filled horse crap.
In the finale of Nightwing, Dick Grayson faked his own death because he was publicly outed as Nightwing. In Grayson, he goes undercover for Batman to infiltrate a super secret spy organization named Spyral… No, I’m not making that up. Spyral? Seriously??? That may have been clever back in the 60s, but now it’s just ridiculously stupid. No spy organization would ever have the word ‘spy’ in it anywhere.
I could forgive the stupid name if the story was good. It wasn’t.
My hope for the New 52 dwindled. I’ll admit that if I had to pay to keep reading them, I would’ve stopped. Since they were free from the library, I gave some more of them a shot. All titles listed are ones I read at least 2 collections of (the equivalent of around 8-10 issues).
Green Arrow: Pretty much blew.
Green Lantern, New Guardians: Not half bad. I’m not a big Lantern guy, but this was better than I thought it would be.
Suicide Squad: First book, good. Second book, suck. I was too afraid to try the third one.
Red Hood and the Outlaws: Good enough to keep me interested, but not good enough for me to say I liked it.
And finally, the one I thought I’d like the least but it ended up being better than the rest of them, except for Nightwing:
That’s right. Aquaman.
The only reason I even gave this a try was a guy at work told me that they went out of their way to make sure that Aquaman wasn’t a joke in The New 52. He was right. They made sure he was a force to be reckoned with.
They also addressed some of the jokes made at Aquaman’s expense. In the first issue he walks into a seafood place and orders fish. The people in the restaurant flip out. “You’re Aquaman, you can’t eat fish!” “Aren’t they your friends?”
He tries to explain to them that he can telepathically communicate with them to give them commands, but he doesn’t have conversations with them. When they still hounded him, he asked, “What do you think I eat when I’m underwater?” and that shut them up. There were also some scenes where cops say that they’re embarrassed that Aquaman helped them catch criminals and then he saves their lives from some super baddies.
I read the first 3 collections of it and they were all good. Hopefully, they kept it up.
What about you? What’s your opinion on the New 52 books?