Friday, April 4, 2008

[The Hyacinth family seal, pressed into red wax]

Hail to thee my liege, the great and revered overlord of the New York comics publishing industry, Emperor Paul Levitz,

I have made note of your truly generous decision to grace the Blog at Newsarama with a question and answer session. We loyal readers of your product do greatly appreciate this gesture, your lordship, and we have already learned much from one mere session; it boggles the mind to think of what incredible, unspeakable knowledge we might accumulate over the course of this feature. In answering these questions, you have justified the very existence of the internet.

However, my worship, I do have some grave concerns about the venue you have chosen for this interrogative feature. I am but a lowly wretch in your magisterial presence, and I do not mean to question your decisions. But I cannot help but notice your majesty bristled at the thought that Vertigo-brand periodicals are published on paper fit for protecting a bird's cage from its occupant's leavings. This is a most unseemly way of asking a question, most unfit for the solemn occasion of a question and answer session with the overlord of DC Comics! If I had been present, my grace, I surely would have beaten the impudent whelp within an inch of his life for daring to suggest that any DC-published title should rest anywhere other than a snug mylar bag, nestled safely in an acid-free box, in the most secure part of one's parents' basement.

I humbly prostrate myself before thee, oh gracious admiral of the inky seas, to beg that you not provide these hordes of lowly commoners with an opportunity they cannot fathom, let alone take advantage of. (I apologize for ending this sentence in a preposition, your majesty; my rage has overwhelmed me, I fear.) Instead, I beseech you to answer these following questions here, which I am certain will provide the masses with sufficient enlightenment for another fortnight:

1. How shall the mighty war machine of DC Comics, in association with the dread legal forces of Time-Warner, castigate the Siegel family for its shocking affront in attempting to assert ownership of your holiness' wondrous Excalibur, the incomparable Superman? My lord, do not think that I ask this out of fear that such an event shall not transpire; I have no doubt that the streets of Manhattan will run red with your opponents' blood, and Superman will remain on newsstands and comics specialty shops throughout this fair land. I merely wish to hear a few wisps of detail, so that I might better bask in the warmth of the One True Comics Company and its glorious ruler.

2. Is there anything that might be done about the new Brave and the Bold cartoon? I fear that its jocular tone shall undermine the all-encompassing mood of dread and terror which you have worked so hard to establish during the last several years. This program seems appropriate for children, my sire! Surely this is contrary to your wishes for the intellectual properties entrusted to your care by the fearsome shareholders of Time-Warner!

3. When shall Jemm, Son of Saturn be collected in a proper "graphical novel" format? I know that you would agree that it is a shining beacon on the horizon of the comic book industry, a feeling I have had since I read it between paternal, character-building beatings at the tender age of eight. I do, of course, have a complete set of the originals, but I have stained these pages with my abundant tears of joy (which some have linked to repressed feelings of terror, but this is unmanly talk). Furthermore, your highness, I would humbly suggest that the next generation of comic book professionals could learn something from this heart-wrenching tale of an alien and his human friend. (Some have suggested that the same experience might be had by watching ET the Extra-Terrestrial, but I fail to see how the lessons of one medium might be applied to another. Motion pictures and comic books are two different things!) I do not mean to say, of course, that Gene Colan's art should be copied; clearly, the great and exalted Jim Lee, Baron of Wildstorm, Marquis of the Metaphorical Exchequer, and Grand Duke Artist-in-General, is the only model which modern comic book artists should seek to follow.

I beg thee, o wise and mighty demigod of the squarebound and the stapled, to consider these questions. I hope you will accept this humble Youtube video as you consider these things.

May Marvel Comics be forever damned! May DC rule forever! Godspeed!

Your servant,
Count Dickard Wozencraft Hyacinth, Esquire


Dick Hyacinth said...

Now will somebody ask him a decent question? Don't make me have to do it.

Tucker Stone said...

What's the point? PR wanking is PR wanking.

Dick Hyacinth said...

We'll see. I'd like to see a tough question about why all of Vertigo's current titles read (and sell) (and smell) like off-brand creamed corn, but I'm afraid Levitz' volunteer honor guard might find that question inappropriate.

Anonymous said...

Pretty sure Paul Levitz is on the Siegels' side re: Superman.

Dick Hyacinth said...

I wasn't trying to say he was, but I'd be very happy to hear this was the case. Not that I expect any kind of official statement anytime soon.

Dick Hyacinth said...

Er, I meant to say "I wasn't trying to say he wasn't." You know what I mean.

Jones, one of the Jones boys said...

Well, I tried to ask a question about why DC doesn't include a standard disclaimer for racism/sexism in their reprints of older material (along the lines of what Dark Horse did in Astro Boy). But Newsarama thinks I'm spam, so it probably won't show up.

And Jemm? My good fellow, the wise and powerful masters at DC have yet to collect "Atari Force"! Would you save Beaumont and Fletcher from the flames before Shakespeare? Addison before Johnson? Kyle Rayner before Hal Jordan?

Tucker Stone said...

I can't really imagine any circumstance where I would really want to know anything about the interworkings of publishing comic books. The most interesting stuff to me would be if someone would ask personal stuff-like if, when Levitz is shown the next batch of those thirty dollar toys of obscure Justice Society chracters, toys he must know mostly sell to mid-30's emotionally stunted fans, if the thought ever crosses his mind that this, this is his job, and where exactly did he go so wrong? What happened?

You know, the depressing personal stuff. The stuff that makes him drink. That's what I'd want to know.

But as you pointed out, most people just want to know if they're going to get the chance to buy a 100 dollar hardcover of the Omega Men.