Thursday, January 10, 2008

Yes, you probably should shut up now

-Heidi MacDonald is right--it's time to move on from One More Day. I mean, I expected all the hand wringing from people leaving comments on the popular blogs/boards--who didn't? That's the nature of comics fandom. Having said that, some of the reactions are setting new standards for fanboy meltdowns, and it's clearly wearing on the people who run these sites. It looks like MacDonald's plea for a moratorium on OMD discussions backfired, but I sympathize with what she, Brian Cronin, and the Blogorama guys are going through.

Irritating in a different way are those who feel compelled to brag about their total disinterest in OMD. What, exactly, is the point of this? Is this kind of minimal standard of human intelligence worth celebrating? You knew it was going to suck all along? Great--that puts you on the same level as the hundreds of Newsarama posters who have been saying the same thing for the last year. (Don't worry, you can still claim some moral superiority if you didn't actually buy it. You didn't buy it, right?) I'm not sure whether I prefer this unwarranted gloating or the apocalyptic overreaction to Civil War, where all pretense of enlightened apathy was abandoned in favor of wild denunciations of Iron Man, Mr. Fantastic, and other fictional characters. The latter seemed to last for the better part of the spring, but at least it was funny.

Don't get me wrong. One More Day has been an interesting story for a variety of reasons. J. Michael Straczynski and Joe Quesada have provided plenty of entertainment with their dueling versions of events. The metaphysical dissolution of the Spider-marriage does seem like a bit of a departure for Marvel. And the fan reaction has been exceptionally vehement. But it's still unclear if any of those things matter in the long run. JMS and Quesada's quarrel might be an isolated incident, rather than a turning point in editorial-creative relations. Other writers at Marvel might avoid magic due to the critical backlash against the silliness of having Mephisto "fix" the marriage, or personal distaste for the same.

Finally, I strongly suspect that fans' overblown reaction to OMD might not be a reflection of unprecedented anger so much as a growing tendency towards increased shrillness in reaction to every new event. Over the last 3 or so years, we've had a succession of controversial events and subsequent denunciations of said event by a very vocal segment of fans. And yet the events keep on rolling. I suspect some fans have decided (perhaps unconsciously) that the problem is THEY'RE NOT SCREAMING LOUD ENOUGH. Perhaps they should look across the metaphorical aisle to DC, where declining sales have had a clear (though not necessarily positive) effect on editorial content. I'm pretty sure that Quesada and his corporate overlords will respond to economic pressure more readily than Youtube videos of burning comics. Is OMD offensive enough that all the talk of boycott isn't just hot air? Should Marvel regard the subdued reaction to the upcoming Skrull event with some trepidation? Will this Skrull-apathy combine with the aforementioned Spider-enmity to affect Marvel's bottom line? I have my doubts, but I guess we'll see.

-I don't know if I'll be able to resist a Batman Lego game (via The Beat). So far I've been able to resist the Star Wars Lego games, but I like Batman more than Star Wars and this game looks much funnier than its Star Wars counterpart. I mean, look at that image of the Scarecrow. And on the second page, Killer Croc with the traditional Lego protuberance on his head! I don't know if I have the willpower to avoid playing this. I'm pretty sure, however, that I have the willpower to wait 6-8 months for the price has gone down.

-I had a dream the other night where I confused Los Bros Hernandez with the Nogueira twins--I specifically thought that Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (the one who fights at heavyweight) had written Speak of the Devil. There's nothing really interesting to add to this--just a window into my madness.


Jamaal said...

Sometimes I wonder if the overwrought fan response is linked to the fact that Marvel's creators/editors feel some need to explain everything. Do you think people would get over OMD faster if Marvel stopped trying to justify it?

Dick Hyacinth said...

I hadn't ever really considered it, but it's a good point. Marvel looks "guilty" by doing all these interviews, etc. I suspect it's a damned-if-you-do/don't kind of situation, though--if they didn't do all this PR, they'd be accused of arrogance or something.

Dan Coyle said...

Well, the part of problem is, Steve Wacker and now Dan Slott have given standoffish and condescending interviews that have stoked the flames even more.

"NRAMA: You've said before, Spider-Man is one of the what, three books that you would kill to write monthly...did your devotion to the character waver at all when it was made clear the changes in the status quo of Spider-Man and his world that you would be writing?

DS: Wow. That's a pretty loaded way of putting it. I can see where you fall on some of these issues, Matt."

What kind of paranoid answer is that? It just makes fans angrier.

I think whoever does the next interview should just say, "Look, I know you're angry, but please, give me a shot, I'm gonna give you a good Spider-Man story, and in the end, I think that's all we really want."

People should really let the fucking Harry Osborn thing go, though. It's obvious something's up there.