by Angela Outlaw
For those of you who don’t get to hear my weekly rants, Marvel comics and I aren’t on the best of terms. Why should we be?
From a readers standpoint they have given me the repeated “fuck you”. They jacked up their pricing without justifying the content. And when enough people complained they shoved in extra pages with crappy reprints. Then there’s that whole problem with the actual stories. I swear they’re like an eight year old that discovers their first joke; because enough people laughed the first few times, they tell it over and over and over and over until everyone ignores them. Universal tie-ins, character deaths, Wolverine on every team, 10 more Deadpool titles…they tried to compete with Twilight and True Blood for fuck’s sake!? Vampires?! Really?
At least the eight year old has an excuse. He’s eight.
From a retailers standpoint they have given us the repeated “fuck you.” Whether it’s a complicated ordering process or “new trades” that turn out to be strip reprints, only one thing is certain: They just don’t give a shit. All we are to them is just a mass of unprofessional overweight crybabies that’ll never be appeased. And there’s some truth to that, but that lack of professionalism is running on both sides of the street. They don’t care if we disappear–we’re just not making them enough money. After all, it’s pretty difficult to sell a product that tries to compete with fucking Twilight!
Reader or retailer, we are fans first and Marvel has been taking advantage for quite some time. Instead of providing good content, they produce more shit, but that’s what happens when you run your company like a sweat shop.
I often look at Marvel and DC like ex-boyfriends that you just can’t seem to shake. You know, the ones that are really hot but the relationship was poisonous and just brought out the worst in you. But then they come back and you start thinking about the good days again. Maybe he really has changed this time? After a few months your right back to crying on your friends couch while he’s out getting arrested for indecent exposure because he was too drunk to use the bathroom at the bar before he decided to call one of the bouncers a racial slur. Granted, DC never really did it for you sexually the Marvel did but at least you could take him out in public! It also helped that your parents liked him.
So here I am, back with DC because he’s matured a bunch but I still can’t shake that feeling that he might play for the same team but he just hasn’t figured it out yet. So I’m trying to keep a safe distance but still let him dote on me a little. But Marvel sent me a text last week. He got me something and it’s not like that crappy song he wrote for me that one time. I know it’s just a ploy because he wants something from me; he’s so fucking selfish…
Lo and behold, it’s The Twelve.
The Twelve was one of those brilliant mini-series that Marvel produces that completely remind you of why they matter (like Supreme Power). Then, of course, they fuck it up by cutting it from the Max line (like Supreme Power) or, in the case of The Twelve, they completely stop working on it in mid run. They wait a few years and try picking up where they left off because everyone totally remembers what happened in the last issue because we clearly don’t have lives (yeah, that ex metaphor doesn’t seem so crazy now). They did it with Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk, that weird mini-series with Avengers: House of M, and they’ll keep doing it because we keep giving them money!
I’m still bitter.
X-Women was the last great thing I ever read from Marvel but it had nothing to do with THEM and everything to do with Milo Manara. I gave them some additional chances with X-23 and Wolverine and Jubilee, but at that point I had developed a little thing called taste so those were short lived. Honestly, who seeks advice from Emma Frost?!? WTF Jubilee, vampire or not when did you become an idiot?
However, I really really liked The Twelve…at least I think I did. I read the new TPB that came out last week and yeah, I still love it. The story follows a group of B and C-list heroes that fight in WWII and end up getting cryogenically frozen Captain America style. They are discovered and revived in 2008 to a world they can’t recognize. J. Michael Straczynski takes his time with each character, developing a frighteningly real link to the past as they try to move forward. I often praise characters that I care about yet hate how necessary it is to do so. It’s just so rare these days, especially because Marvel loves to destroy all empathy I may have held for their characters.
I’ll chip away at my nail polish in anticipation for the new issues. Lucky for them it’s still strongly relevant. If it wasn’t, this writing time would have gone to something else like masturbating or staring at a wall because sometimes that’s just more important than writing/caring about anything Marvel can give me.
What? I’m just paying it forward.