Sunday, July 12, 2009

Super-Powered Comics: Wednesday Comics #1

I picked up DC’s inaugural issue of their fourth weekly title Wednesday Comics (fifth if you count the old school excellence of Action Comics Weekly) and I found the results somewhat lackluster. Yes, we have some big name creators on great DC properties, but most of the stories fall flat on their face, almost if the creators have no idea what format they are working in.

Batman and Teen Titans seem to be produced by people unaware that they have only one page an issue as next to nothing happens in their stories.

Supergirl, Sgt. Rock, The Demon/Catwoman, Deadman, Green Lantern, and Superman all have one thing in common: lackluster starts that do not inspire much in the way of story (although all are pretty to look at). The prettiest is Kyle Baker’s Hawkman, which takes on a new style for the enigmatic creator. But though great art-wise, the story offers little to no actual plot to where the storyline will go.

Wonder Woman’s art and writing were interesting, but left me confused as to where the book might be going.

The comics that worked out best are the ones that grasp that they are channeling the old school comic strip format made famous by Flash Gordon and Prince Valiant. Neil Gaiman and Mike Allred’s Metamorpho (two creators and one character I love and the reason I bought this issue in the first place) have it, as do Deadman, Kamandi, and the always great Paul Pope’s Strange Adventures (starring Adam Strange, of course). DC bigwig Dan Didio teamed with classic artist Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez for a fine start to a comedy serial.

But the true story that seems ready to break out is Karl Kerschl & Brendan Fletcher on Flash. They hit on the intriguing idea to split their page in half. The top half is a classic adventure strip starring the Fastest Man Alive, while the lower half of the page is giving us a Apartment 3G style scenario starring Iris West. The two half pages offer more intrigue for the next week than pretty much the entire rest of the package.

Wednesday Comics holds potential, but for near $4 a week they will need more than potential to succeed. Here’s hoping that in the next few weeks, the other creators can grasp the serialized format for what it is. Mildly Recommended for fans of the creators.

No comments: