The Ultimate Problem with The New 52
First off, on average I pick up a little more than a quarter of the DC New 52 titles, as well as a handful of Vertigo and Image Comics in my monthly haul. I haven't been adamantly opposed to The New 52, but I've been more than a little unhappy with it.
As an avid DC reader for many years; I think I've figured out the problem with the New 52. I'm interested in your thoughts...
I don't feel I need to rehash it's obvious problems in any detail,(Justice League's bizarre character treatment, The few but drastic alterations to the Bat Family, it's convoluted chronology, etc) but I think I've isolated what it is that has put me off all this time...
The heroes we love have no humility anymore. They KNOW they are heroes. They act not like the heroes we've always known, but how we would admittedly act if we could step in their shoes.
This may be obvious to many of you, and if so I applaud you for figuring it out before me, but I just couldn't believe it when it hit me.
A specific line hit it home for me;
In Flash #12, Barry accosts a reporter or media mogul who has publicly defamed and scape-goated the Flash for a recent major power outage. I admit, after 12 issues I don't know who this character is because he isn't interesting, nor is giving The Flash the Batman treatment.; but thats a whole other debate I hope die-hard Flash fans are having with eachother. Anyways; the line is this;
"Tearing down a symbol of hope and inciting public demonstrations for "science"...what could you possibly learn from all of that??"-Flash to the other guy...
For me, Barry was always one of the most humble of the DC heroes. Thats what made him and Hal a good team; They balanced eachother out. Now, as the Rogues are being freed from a prison transport vehicle the Flash is too busy asking this guy why he had to destroy his character?-Calling himself a "symbol of hope." Barry knows he's a symbol of hope but he doesn't go around branding himself as such.
In Justice League, Green Lantern's bravado is upped twenty-times, Aquaman and Wonder Woman's regalities are quadrupled, Superman is a proud but befuddled mess, hardly the leader he should be, and ultimately they are a terrible team! Because they come off as so selfish and arrogant.
Now I'm well aware, in their respected titles, a lot of these characters remain mostly true to their histories in the last decade or so, or have improved. But as I've noticed in Justice League and now The Flash, our heroes just simply aren't the heroes we used to love. They're over-simplified and downright unlikable heroes. No wonder Central City turned against The Flash when he clearly only cared about what they thought of him, not the good he did to them everyday, a thousand times over, in the blink of the eye.
Another major problem I've had with the New 52 from day one is that it all originated with Flashpoint, and no one, including The Flash is aware of it anymore. Where is the voice of the people like me and countless others who are iffy or hesitant towards this New World? Can't someone other than The Phantom Stranger be asking; "Hey, doesn't something about all this seem a little off?"
My last thought is this; The New 52 has brought us some amazing material; Wonder Woman, Animal Man and Swamp Thing on the top of that list for me. Green Lantern threw us a loop, but I think paid off. The Bat titles, while not stellar have been consistent. But when Superman, Justice League, and the Flash don't feel even remotely the heroes we all love; something is very wrong.
This, of course, is my opinion, I only post this because I want to hear yours.
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