Darwyn Cooke-How DC and Marvel must change: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xgMZl0FJsx4
I watched this little rant and I kinda think I might know what Darwyn Cooke is saying and then again there is a part of me that kinda thinks Cooke just maybe isn’t hip to current continuity in the DCU.
The comment that makes you scratch your head the most is his “I don’t want to see characters who have been straight for sixty years suddenly become lesbians over night because the writers are too stupid or too uncreative to come up with something original or decent.” Mostly everyone assumes he’s referencing Batwoman. Okay… First he states his complaints about Batman (which we’ll get to in a moment) then he trashes, presumably, Batwoman, with the previously mentioned comment. Only… Kate Kane, the current Batwoman, and yes… a lesbian, was created in 2006! Not sixty years ago! While Batwoman first appeared in the 1950’s, Betty Kane (the first Batwoman) is not the current Batwoman… Kate Kane is.
Based on his opening statement “I want them to stop catering to the perverted needs of forty five year old men“ he must be referencing writer Greg Rucka?? Greg Rucka who did not use the characters sexuality in a sexual way (if that makes sense)?? This just further tells me that Cooke is far removed from who this character and her creators are. Anyway, I guess what he is saying is that one of the things wrong with DC Comics is that they took a Silver Age character and changed her from straight to gay… because they are perverts?
Most commenter’s on the internet have attempted to clarify Cooke’s words into meaning that he is only criticizing “mainstream” superhero comics, not all superhero comics, or non-hero titles.
Okay…now onto his Batman comments.
Both, the reference to Batman swearing, and the reference to Batman and Black Canary’s, shall we say, coitus, take place in All Star Batman and Robin along with the “feeding a boy rats” nonsense, only thing is… All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder is an “Else-Worlds/What-If?” title. That book is nowhere near being in continuity and thus the mainstream Batman is unharmed and still holds his ethical high ground. Say what you want about All Star, and there is a lot to be said, but the stuff that goes on in that book will never ever take place in the main DC continuity (otherwise known as earth-0, or commonly called New Earth). IMO, since Cooke’s comments are referring to All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder, a series that is outside of mainstream continuity, Darwyn Cooke is either unfamiliar with the goings-on in the current DCU or he is stating that essentially mainline continuity needs to be brought back to the Silver Age, so to speak , and there should not be an adult line of superhero stories…
Looking at his overall point, it seems obvious that he is sick of comics being dark and thinks they should be written for “the young people they were meant for.” I wonder, does he mean the stories should be at the reading/comprehension level of the 60’s DC stuff? Aren’t we a little passed that? And is he really saying that adults shouldn’t be entertained by superhero comic books?
Much like Cooke’s language was extreme to get his point across I think having all hero books revert to square jaws and “golly geez” is a bit a extreme too. I definitely agree that there is way too much senseless violence (that’s not even that good), deaths for shock value only, and violence towards women and children, but I don’t think trading one extreme for the other is the answer.
If all mainstream super hero titles were written only for children, the big two would crumble. By the same token, if they do not gain young readers to continue the fan base they will face the same fate. It’s not as paradoxical as it sounds. I think there is a happy medium. Why can’t the books just be written so as they are enjoyed equally between most age groups?
I have zero appreciation for entertainment being dumbed down baby talk and simply labeling it as age appropriate. Some stuff out there is borderline insulting to kids and even their parents. They’re kids, not idiots. There is a middle ground where both goo-goo ga-ga and senseless shock smut can just die and we are left with something close to genius.
In comic books we need look no further than Cooke himself with one of my faves, New Frontier. This story can easily be enjoyed by adults or teens. For someone younger Bone is amazingly witty and entertaining for both children and adults. So it can be done. And perhaps this is what Darwyn Cooke desires? More of an all-ages venue, rather than the age exclusive clubs we have now? Is this what is coming-up in comic books?
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