Treading Cautiously

We all see the trend and everyone's holding their breath, hoping that these big events from Marvel & DC won't lead to an explosion of the market followed by and immediate implosion. Tom Spurgeon speculated on the fallout of Infinite Crisis and makes some good if pessimistic points. He does point to the level of talent that DC is putting behind this revamp, but he does seem to be on the right track about the difficulty of promoting an entire line of comics the size of the DCU. What got me thinking, though, was how much better these events themselves could be used to infuse both the Marvel and DC universes with a line wide bump in creativity/exposure.

Over at The Savage Critic(s), Graeme's take on Action Comics (scroll down a bit -- go back and read the rest of his reviews later) sets up the biggest problem with building off of an event like DC's Infinite Crisis: everything outside of the event becomes kind of pointless until the event is over. I mean, seven months? Really? The story thus far takes place over the course of a couple days. DC clearly understood this problem, though, because they figured out a way to start dealing with the fallout from the event before it was actually over, namely by dealing with the fallout from the fallout. Clever.

My query, though, is why, why, why couldn't Infinite Crisis have been one big old story, published as a single entity, rather than stretched out over 7 excruciating months, thereby ruining the regular titles DC publishes? Maybe they don't care because they have ONE YEAR LATER (dun, dun, DUN) to rehook the readers, but why let them off that hook in the first place? Several people smarter than I have pointed out that a jump like that provides just as much chance for a reader to jump off a title as jump on. Why is DC waiting half a year to give the line a kick in the pants? And don't even start on the time it would take to get the project done. We've been hearing about how much planning has gone into this thing, and I'm quite sure they could have gotten Johns, Jiminez, Perez and company going on this thing early enough to put it out as a single collection. Then maybe the last couple months of DC titles wouldn't be so ridiculously pointlessly, anti-climactic.

Sure it runs contrary to Didio's stated intention to return the industry to reliance on singles and sure it kills a month or two of buzz, but DC has already gotten a years worth of buzz out of the concept of Infinite Crisis and its not like One Year Later wouldn't have kept that buzz going. It just seems like the only solution anyone could come up with to avoid treading water for seven full months was to tread water for four or five months and jump into the future. 52* looks interesting an all, but I would've preferred someone think a little farther outside the box instead of patting themselves on the back for pulling off the complicated logistics of coordinating a bunch of series sitting in neutral.


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