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 Post subject: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-26 07:49pm
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I've never really been a fan of the capes and tights comic books. Loved the characters as a kid, of course. I think everyone loved the Justice League and Super Friends. But the actual comics? I could never get into them because of all the soap opera BS. Because all the notable heroes are franchise characters, nobody can do anything interesting with them, writers can't risk rocking the boat. And so the characters get run into the ground as their stories progress decade after decade. You wind up with soap opera plot machinations mandated by the editors, giant crossover events that try to retcon decades of crufty continuity. It seems like madness.

I've never gotten into MMORPG's like Warcraft and it only takes talking to someone who's into it to make me so happy I've never tried. I feel the same way whenever a publisher-mandated decision is so stupid it ends up getting covered across all the geek news sites. I'd only known JMS was working on Spiderman because I'm a Babylon 5 fan and was surprised as hell when he was forced into a publisher-mandated retcon of the Parker marriage. Then there's the whole DC infinite crisis of BS and reboot crap and seriously, what the hell?

Honestly, I think a big problem is that there's only so many possible stories you can tell with these characters. How long can you go until you start repeating yourself? People age and die, children replace them. There's always going to be someone new falling in love for the first time, experiencing the big milestones in life, the turning points. So even if it's something everyone else on the planet and throughout time has experienced, it's new to him, it's new to her. But it's old-hat to a Superman or Batman who's been around for decades. Superman's 74 years old. What could possibly remain interesting about his story?

Of course, if people keep buying the books, what does the publisher care? They're trying to make money, not art. But the results certainly aren't enticing, at least to me at any rate.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-26 08:45pm
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Me and Clark may have been around for three quarters of a century, but a lot of our readers haven't, so even retelling stories that have already been told isn't necessarily a bad idea.
And there definitely have been interesting stories in there. Knightfall. The Killing Joke. A Death in the Family/A lonely place of Dying. Last Laugh. NML. Officer Down. And that's just me comics. How about Emeral Twilight/Rebirth (I'm on record hating the return of Hal Jordan and even I have to admit Rebirth was well executed). Wally's rise to proper Flashdom. Ollie finally doing the smart thing and killing a supervillian (and, unsurprisingly, being ostrazied for it).
The problem with superhero (and especially DC) comics is there's so Valenmamned much of it. For every decent storyline there's 15 that stink, and the whole interconnectedness of all things approach doesn't help. Where DC is concerned, I'm allegedly the brains of the outfit, so how come every time Clark shows up to help, I tell him to skeedaddle, and more importantly why does he comply? Several of those occasions predate me having the kryptonite ring, afterall.



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-26 09:55pm
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Quote:
Me and Clark may have been around for three quarters of a century, but a lot of our readers haven't, so even retelling stories that have already been told isn't necessarily a bad idea.


That parallels what I mentioned above. Can you push someone right up to the line he won't cross? Who blinks first, you or him? It's an interesting question with Batman but you can only tell that story so many times. Someone who's new to comics can go right to the best arc and read how Batman is tempted. Someone who's read the best and the worst is going to be bored the next time that question gets raised. It'd be interesting only if someone else is asked that question.

There's only two ways around this sort of thing I can think of and franchise suits wouldn't go for either of 'em.

Idea #1: let the world go on. Heroes age and die. New guy takes up the cape. There hero is dead! Long live the hero! Yeah, characters who are expressly immortal get around that. But I doubt that the powers that be would go for it.

Idea #2: Accept that there will be a new era and put a strong editor in charge to shape it. At the beginning of each era it's a whole new playing field, anything can happen. Plot out important story arcs, play damn hard, play for keeps. Plays out to a fitting conclusion. Wrap it up, hand off to the next major editor. This also provides the advantage that only the elements that are decent will be brought forward. Harley Quinn was an invention of the Animated Series but was such a great character that she was brought into the comics. It's hard to imagine the Joker without her. A new editor might want to make his run of Batman as realistic as possible so does away with gimmick villains, explicit use of magic, mutants, and crazy scifi stuff that doesn't exist in the here and now. The editor following that might say ok, we've done enough realism, let's be more tolerant of the weird and paranormal. Mad science does work. The dead can be brought back to life. But it's a conscious decision to include these ideas and you don't end up with a thematic mishmash.

I mean this is what they're essentially doing with most reboots. The recent batch of Godzilla movies ran with the premise of "There was only one Godzilla movie, the original, and these are the direct sequels." The last Superman movie ignored all the crappy sequels. The two Hulk films were so bad, Avengers pretends neither of them happened. The third and fourth Batman movies were so awful that the franchise appeared dead. Batman Begins is the first time I've ever heard the phrase "reboot" used.

One other thought about setting an era: you get that beginning, middle, and end. I think stories need good endings. It might not be the final story to tell with the characters but at least there's the hope you won't start telling a new story unless it's one worth telling. The problem with open-ended franchises is that they never end with dignity, they just tend to run on and on until they age into depressing shadows of their former glory and the end isn't a high note, it's like holding a pillow over the face of a comatose friend because you know he'd never have wanted to end up like this. It's mercy, isn't it?

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-26 10:19pm
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jollyreaper wrote:
The last Superman movie ignored all the crappy sequels.

and was an atrocity.


Quote:
The two Hulk films were so bad, Avengers pretends neither of them happened.

No, the one with Norton is the one that happened in the Avengers timeline. It ignored the first one.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-26 10:30pm
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Didn't see the last Supes movie but I heard it was bad. Still, I don't see how it could be much worse than 3 or 4.

Per Hulk, I thought they tossed out the story from 2 along with Norton. Haven't seen Avengers yet.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-26 10:34pm
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jollyreaper wrote:
Didn't see the last Supes movie but I heard it was bad. Still, I don't see how it could be much worse than 3 or 4.

I don't think I've ever wanted something to just fucking happen as much as I did during that movie. It was so slow and boring I fell asleep, twice, during the middle of the day.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-26 10:40pm
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The original Superman movie had to tell his origin story and still managed to have more Superman action than Returns (besides, Reeve's costume was 2 inches of cape length short of perfect while Routh's majorly stunk).



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-26 10:56pm
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Quote:
I don't think I've ever wanted something to just fucking happen as much as I did during that movie. It was so slow and boring I fell asleep, twice, during the middle of the day.

You obviously never saw 2001 or The Motionless Movie :D



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-27 07:29am
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Batman wrote:
The original Superman movie had to tell his origin story and still managed to have more Superman action than Returns (besides, Reeve's costume was 2 inches of cape length short of perfect while Routh's majorly stunk).


I really don't understand the desire to make costumes so technical. The latest superman pics floating around have his costume made out of armored panels or something and there are all these seams. Whatever happened to simple spandex? You can maybe buy Batman rolling with body armor but I'd say the best suit of his I've seen on film was from the batman va aliens va predator fan film. It's just gray material over a beefy guy who works out, none of this armored rubber with nipples nonsense.

I don't know why all the artists like drawing their characters like juice pigs. Sure, Thor can be muscly. Superman's classic build is like Charles Atlas, no roids. Batman is tall but would otherwise have a Bruce Lee build, a martial artist, not Schwarzenegger. Magneto? If anything he would probably look like a fit business executive, not a roid freak. He doesn't have to hit people because his power is in his mind. Same with Tony Stark -- the shit does the work, he just has to fit in it.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-27 04:49pm
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Other than the nipples (thanks a lot, Mr Schumacher) I actually rather like the body armour theme they did for the Burton/Nolan movies. The suits looked a lot more sensible both from a 'not invulnerable, so bulletproof=good' and especially from the 'gets by by skulking in shadows' angle-powder blue, light grey and especially the bright yellow utility belt aren't exactly particularly stealthy.
Why Clark would wear body armour I have no clue. I mean we're talking about a man whose reaction to a megaton range warhead going off in his left ear might very well be saying 'Gesundheit'.



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-27 06:42pm
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My problem is that the suit wasn't practical. I can accept that, say, Robocop's actor can't do much in the suit but it's supposed to cybernetic this and that -- what we're looking at isn't supposed to be a man with all his limbs in a suit. Batman, in contrast, is supposed to be a mortal human in supreme condition. If the actor can't do the stunts in the costume, it's a bad costume. I laughed at Keaton having to turn his whole torso to look to the side.

Image

Image

Why do all the new suits for all the new heroes look like this? The Reeves suit is fine.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-27 06:48pm
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I'm reasonably certain I commented on the Reeve suit being very nearly perfect and great Valen where is this abomination from?



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-27 07:10pm
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jollyreaper wrote:
Per Hulk, I thought they tossed out the story from 2 along with Norton. Haven't seen Avengers yet.


No, the actor may have changed but the storyline (such as it was) has been retained. We even see brief bits of the latest Hulk movie in The Avengers and Iron Man 2.

Before I saw Avengers, I was wary of Ruffalo as Banner, (I generally dislike characters being recast, especially such a major role), but in a perfect world, the extant The Incredible Hulk would have been improved by replacing Norton with Ruffalo. They could have done without Liv Tyler while they were at it...



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Droning on and on before it was fashionable.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-27 09:49pm
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Batman wrote:
I'm reasonably certain I commented on the Reeve suit being very nearly perfect and great Valen where is this abomination from?


Yeah. I'm just still processing how awful it looks. I thought the Nicholas Cage one was dreadful but this is just about as bad.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-29 12:43pm
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The real problem is that the nature of long running characters is that they can't have lasting arcs. What progress is made must be unmade. Long running series CAN have arcs, but the cast has to change and advance with it. And a lot of IP holders fear changes to the status quo.

In more creator controlled stories like Atomic Robo or most everything in Japan, that happens more often than it does with the Big Two.

jollyreaper wrote:
There's only two ways around this sort of thing I can think of and franchise suits wouldn't go for either of 'em.

Idea #1: let the world go on. Heroes age and die. New guy takes up the cape. There hero is dead! Long live the hero! Yeah, characters who are expressly immortal get around that. But I doubt that the powers that be would go for it.


The Phantom does that, but is rather slow to do so.

Also, there are some good stories that already take advantage of such concepts (Kingdom Come, The New Frontier), but there are also middling ones (Generations has its ups and downs).

Quote:
Idea #2: Accept that there will be a new era and put a strong editor in charge to shape it. At the beginning of each era it's a whole new playing field, anything can happen. Plot out important story arcs, play damn hard, play for keeps. Plays out to a fitting conclusion. Wrap it up, hand off to the next major editor. This also provides the advantage that only the elements that are decent will be brought forward. Harley Quinn was an invention of the Animated Series but was such a great character that she was brought into the comics. It's hard to imagine the Joker without her. A new editor might want to make his run of Batman as realistic as possible so does away with gimmick villains, explicit use of magic, mutants, and crazy scifi stuff that doesn't exist in the here and now. The editor following that might say ok, we've done enough realism, let's be more tolerant of the weird and paranormal. Mad science does work. The dead can be brought back to life. But it's a conscious decision to include these ideas and you don't end up with a thematic mishmash.


Which is what's done with pro wrestling.



ISARMA: Daikaiju Coordinator: Just Add Radiation
Justice League- Molly Hayes: Respect Hats or Freakin' Else!
Browncoat
Supernatural Taisen - "[This Story] is essentially "Wouldn't it be awesome if this happened?" Followed by explosions."

Reviewing movies is a lot like Paleontology: The Evidence is there...but no one seems to agree upon it.

"God! Are you so bored that you enjoy seeing us humans suffer?! Why can't you let this poor man live happily with his son! What kind of God are you, crushing us like ants?!" - Kyoami, Ran

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-29 01:58pm
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I don't follow wrestling. What have they been doing there?

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-29 05:46pm
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The 7 year rule.

If it happened 7 or more years ago, it doesn't matter.



ISARMA: Daikaiju Coordinator: Just Add Radiation
Justice League- Molly Hayes: Respect Hats or Freakin' Else!
Browncoat
Supernatural Taisen - "[This Story] is essentially "Wouldn't it be awesome if this happened?" Followed by explosions."

Reviewing movies is a lot like Paleontology: The Evidence is there...but no one seems to agree upon it.

"God! Are you so bored that you enjoy seeing us humans suffer?! Why can't you let this poor man live happily with his son! What kind of God are you, crushing us like ants?!" - Kyoami, Ran

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-29 06:22pm
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Majin Gojira wrote:
The 7 year rule.

If it happened 7 or more years ago, it doesn't matter.


Is this for wrestling or all media?

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-29 10:40pm
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Wrestling as far as I know.

Though I think it may be less than t hat (down to 3 years). Just google the phrase to learn more.



ISARMA: Daikaiju Coordinator: Just Add Radiation
Justice League- Molly Hayes: Respect Hats or Freakin' Else!
Browncoat
Supernatural Taisen - "[This Story] is essentially "Wouldn't it be awesome if this happened?" Followed by explosions."

Reviewing movies is a lot like Paleontology: The Evidence is there...but no one seems to agree upon it.

"God! Are you so bored that you enjoy seeing us humans suffer?! Why can't you let this poor man live happily with his son! What kind of God are you, crushing us like ants?!" - Kyoami, Ran

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-29 11:10pm
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Majin Gojira wrote:
Wrestling as far as I know.

Though I think it may be less than t hat (down to 3 years). Just google the phrase to learn more.


Oh my god. What I read... wrasslin'. It's like comic books and soap operas started LARPing.

Anyway, the concept does make a lot of sense. But it does bring up another question about production. If everything can be recycled anyway, why bother making new material for anything? It's like with porn, naked people look like naked people, nothing will change. You'd think after decades of producing content they could just recycle material and who would know? In a medium that's developing technologically I could see that not working. Video games show their age, old scifi looks dated.

Ok, funny idea. Since we've got motion capture and rendered movies these days, now we've got it nailed down. There are only x many original plots, everything's been done before. New guy tries breaking into the pictures as a writer 30 years from now and discovers that no new performances have been recorded in decades. It's all the same mo-cap and they just update the computer models to reflect the latest styles before rendering the "new" film. Seven year rule, nobody remembers the last film anyway. All the movies are referred to as generic template name, clothes are updated to the latest fashions, and the only choice left is whether to stick a new name on the movie or just reuse the old one.

You know, this is sadly not that far off from reality right now.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-30 12:39am
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Majin Gojira wrote:
The 7 year rule.

If it happened 7 or more years ago, it doesn't matter.


I read something like that attributed to someone associated with either Marvel or DC. Something like planning for or expecting to have different fans for a book every 7 years.

If that's true I think it's wishful thinking that they'd maintain any sort of decent sales if they expected fans to not be fans longer than seven years. It might be something they have to assume because dealing with the weight of 40-50 years of stories can be tough and this way the really good stories can be reworked and rehashed for fresher eyes.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-31 12:37am
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Batman wrote:
Why Clark would wear body armour I have no clue. I mean we're talking about a man whose reaction to a megaton range warhead going off in his left ear might very well be saying 'Gesundheit'.

i guess he wants a 'tough' suit so that he's not bucking around naked after a cloth suit has burned off??



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If you believe in Telekinesis, raise my hand.

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-31 02:01am
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jollyreaper wrote:
Didn't see the last Supes movie but I heard it was bad. Still, I don't see how it could be much worse than 3 or 4.

Per Hulk, I thought they tossed out the story from 2 along with Norton. Haven't seen Avengers yet.

I have an idea, and just hear me out here...

Why don't you go fucking see the movies that you say suck before you start actually talking about them sucking.

That is literally 4 sources that you either haven't actually even seen or have no idea how they fit in with the overall tapestry of the movie universes they are in.

In other words, it makes reading what you think a big fucking waste of time.



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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-31 10:01am
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Tsyroc wrote:
Majin Gojira wrote:
The 7 year rule.

If it happened 7 or more years ago, it doesn't matter.


I read something like that attributed to someone associated with either Marvel or DC. Something like planning for or expecting to have different fans for a book every 7 years.

If that's true I think it's wishful thinking that they'd maintain any sort of decent sales if they expected fans to not be fans longer than seven years. It might be something they have to assume because dealing with the weight of 40-50 years of stories can be tough and this way the really good stories can be reworked and rehashed for fresher eyes.
Well, depends who is their target audience.
<personal theory> If it's mostly the teens, the same way like teen magazines, where the readers literally grow up and lose interest in that timeframe, then who cares, as long as they are able to reach out to younger people to replace older ones. Most of the content will provide itself, because there always be teen idols, pop stars, gossip, mainstream music and movies, fashion or whatever and the rest can be simply recycled with a minor updates like the sex tips or relationship advice sections.
A bit different with lifestyle magazines where the regular readers won't remember what had been written that 7 years ago, so anything that's not gossip/fashion/other stuff with short self life can be recycled safely.</personal theory>

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 Post subject: Re: Long-running, of franchise reboots (comics, etc) PostPosted: 2012-05-31 06:57pm
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Havok wrote:
jollyreaper wrote:
Didn't see the last Supes movie but I heard it was bad. Still, I don't see how it could be much worse than 3 or 4.

Per Hulk, I thought they tossed out the story from 2 along with Norton. Haven't seen Avengers yet.

I have an idea, and just hear me out here...

Why don't you go fucking see the movies that you say suck before you start actually talking about them sucking.

That is literally 4 sources that you either haven't actually even seen or have no idea how they fit in with the overall tapestry of the movie universes they are in.

In other words, it makes reading what you think a big fucking waste of time.


If the movies aren't any good, why should I watch them? Given that they didn't cast Norton in Avengers, it's understandable to think they discarded the story, too. Iron Man was great. The sequel was not.

If reading my posts causes you so much distress, would it be better for your state of mind to just close the thread or hurl invective at me? What makes you happier?

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