On Friday we reported on sources inside DC Comics who see doom and gloom in the coming months at the publisher.
Cosmic Book News cited the following commentary by artist Ethan Van Sciver on what fate awaits DC’s publishing:
“In case you haven’t figured it out yet. DC Comics is closing down their publishing division. Now don’t worry everyone. That doesn’t mean there isn’t going to be Batman, Superman, maybe Wonder Woman and stuff,” said Van Sciver in his latest video posted to his ComicArtistPro Secrets YouTube channel. “What I think is happening going forward is DC Comics is going to pair down in the immediate future to a handful of comic books, maybe 12 comic books per month, maybe 12, maybe fewer than that, and these comics are going to be Justice League, Superman, and Batman, and that’s it. There might be back up stories in these books. Maybe there will be a Justice League super-sized book and you will be able to get a Green Lantern short story or a Flash or a Hawkman.”
Van Sciver continues: “But they are not taking any more chances. Publishing is being paired down. Only the best creative teams are going to be allowed to work on them, but they are going to be working for subsistence-level pay.”
Here’s the problem: it’s not that they’ve ever taken chances that’s brought them down, but how they did. By the mid-2000s, they reached a point where every new pitch for a series was immediately approved as a full monthly ongoing, with no testing waters like how Birds of Prey originally came about through miniseries and specials. The Firestorm, Blue Beetle and Atom series starring social justice replacements for the white protagonists originally in the roles – all 3 of who were intentionally kicked to the curb at the time of Identity Crisis to serve Dan DiDio’s agendas – were prime examples of foisting social justice propaganda onto the marketplace untested, and none of them lasted long as a result.
Yet the diversity-pandering characters were kept around for a lot longer, even as their predecessors were eventually brought back, though if recent years are any suggestion, Ronnie Raymond, Ted Kord and Ray Palmer were sidelined again, and there’s no telling if we’ll ever see them again for as long as DC lasts. The era of DiDio may have ended, but the political correctness he started remains. If they can no longer take chances, it’s because the way he went about things, right down to trashing their moral compass in Identity Crisis.
Van Sciver also brought up where Jim Lee stands in all this:
“Jim Lee was co-president with Dan DiDio, but it was completely an honorary title. Jim Lee didn’t belong there. He didn’t do very much there,” explains Van Sciver. “It was just that he had become so powerful and was such a valuable piece of horseflesh. Obviously, a guy that can draw that well, you want to keep him on board. Jim Lee was uncomfortable in his position when Dan DiDio was fired. A lot of people were thinking that this meant he was going to be performing the role that Dan DiDio has performed all these years. Jim Lee doesn’t want to do that. He’s not capable of doing that. That’s not what he wants to do. That’s not his role.”
There’s a problem here too: in recent years, Lee scaled back the proportions on his illustrations to serve a PC agenda, so if he were ever a fine artist before, he isn’t now; he’s thrown away even that much for the sake of social justice mentality. And there’s his chumminess with Brad Meltzer that’s also a problem, to say nothing of a telling double-standard. It remains to be seen how much longer Lee will stay with DC. Certainly, he’s not suited to management roles, and that’s reason enough to get rid of him.
As for their current editor, Variety noted Marie Javins’ prior record:
Prior to her promotion, Javins served as DC’s executive editor of global publishing and digital strategy, where she edited such acclaimed titles as “Justice League,” “DC Super Hero Girls,” “Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles,” “Superman Smashes the Klan,” “Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass” and “Dark Nights: Death Metal.” She joined DC in 2014 in a temporary position to help the company transfer its businesses from New York to Burbank, Calif., and then relocated to join the staff.
Some of the above are politically motivated products, crossovers, or celebrations of a supervillainess. And if Javins had no issues with company wide crossovers, why should we expect this to change with her ascension to EIC? I’ve got a sad feeling that, if there’s any chance DC will be willing to take, it’s with company wide crossovers, and if so, that’ll only ensure their collapse much more easily. Though if that’s what’ll happen, it’ll at least ensure the company won’t be able to put out more propaganda anymore.