Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Thank Goodness

Mr. Didio,

I would like to discuss your recent letter (found in Ion#4 among other books).

"I just happened to mention I wanted Nightwing to die in Infinate Crisis... I thought it was a funny story but boy did it piss people off. It seems that there is a huge (and as I found out, very vocal) fan base for Dick Grayson."

Wow Dan, just figured this one out, eh? The sheer amount of commentary on the comic blogs and forums alone in regards to Devin Grayson (as in hating her for messing with Nightwing) didn't tip you off? I'm not sure how that one passed you by, but hey, at least the powers that be squashed your death of Nightwing idea before you ended up tarred and feathered. Because believe you me, I would have showed up with the tar.

"My first reaction when I got my job was that he was redundant and had to go."

Redundant? Redundant how... isn't the fact that he was neither Batman nor Robin the same thing that made him unique? If he was filling the role of another character then yes, he'd be redundant... but heck, even Nightwing realized that he had grown beyond Robin and didn't want to be Batman. In fact that was the whole reason Marv Wolfman made him into Nightwing back in his Titans days - because Dick wanted to become his own man, his own kind of hero. Even Chuck Dixon covered that in Nightwing Year One.

Thank goodness the vocal fans of the DCN have once again (*cough* Manhunter *cough*) informed you of your mistakes. As much as your decisions seriously piss me off at least you listen to the fans. Nightwing will be in good hands with Marv Wolfman and hopefully with whoever follows him.

Now you just need to listen to those of us who are angry at the idea that you don't want Dick and Babs to get together. Somehow, at the rate you're going, I expect this won't be the last time you have angry fans chasing you around.

Thanks for your time. Please stop messing with our beloved characters. Batwoman is NOT an acceptable consolation prize.



Anonymous Jim said...

Nice commentary, loved the last comment.

Thursday, August 03, 2006  
Anonymous Jeff said...

Talk about redundant, I give you Batwoman. Why do we need this character? For diversity? We already have Montoya as the hispanic lesbian. She's a much more interesting character than Kate Kane. Why do we need another bat-hero? Not necessary and not interesting in the least. To me, Nightwing has the most potential to bring in a new generation of heroes. Too bad they got rid of all his contemporaries. I say put Nightwing and Oracle together and have them usher in a new era at DC.

Thursday, August 03, 2006  
Blogger Arielle said...

Even though I've never read Nightwing, I find your rant highly entertaining!

Thursday, August 03, 2006  
Blogger Erica Well said...

Geez Louise.

The more of Didio's quotes I read across the comics news blogosphere, the more I wonder just why in the world he got hired to be "VP-Executive Editor - DCU."

Saturday, August 05, 2006  
Blogger kalinara said...

Actually, I can see where the redundant thing comes from.

Dick's from the tricky generation. The first Titans batch. These guys are hard because they're no longer kids so they have to find their own niche, one that's unique.

Wally never changed much, but that was okay because he inherited the flash mantle. The others though...they're never going to inherit the roles of their predecessors, so they needed to develop in another way.

Roy took his training farther, becoming a master of many weapons as Arsenal. He'll never be the archer Ollie is, but he's found his own path once he surpassed Speedy.

Garth couldn't replace Arthur as Aquaman, so instead they utilized another aspect of Atlantis. Where Arthur is king and warrior, Tempest is a mage. It's different and works.

Even Donna, for all her problems, was never the same as Diana. Her powers, techniques, outlook are very different.

(Another comparison, not a Titan this time, could be Sand from the JSA. He was created as another cheerful sidekick to a dour detective in the 1940s. Now he's a time-misplaced shape-shifting sand monster. Okay that might be a little extreme, but it's certainly a different direction)

The fact is, Nightwing's more like Wally than the other ones. He's following in his mentor's footsteps. A dark lurker, primarily a martial artist, with some detective ability. Bludhaven was just Gotham Mark II.

There is nothing Nightwing does in his comic that Batman doesn't do better...except maybe get laid.

Nightwing's set up essentially as a crown prince who will never inherit. Batman's never going to retire. And if he did, Tim Drake's positioned as an infinitely more workable successor.

Which would be fine except what does that mean for Dick? He's always going to be second fiddle with very little, ultimately, unique to add to the franchise. (In contrast to Batwoman, who introduces a female character with all of Bruce's advantages but positioned beyond Bruce's influence...which is a very new and interesting development.)

That's I think the source of the "redundant" comment.

As to Dick and Babs, I agree with him there too, for a number of reasons. One thing to consider though, is the business perspective. It's very hard to have the leads of two different series involved romantically. It's very hard to keep series coordinated with each other if they're not written by the same person, I'd imagine. That'd make it really hard because both Babs and Dick would be in each other's books all the time. More likely it'd become one book. In which case, either you'll have Barbara Gordon reduced to a supporting character in her boyfriend/husband's book. Or Dick Grayson added to hers, where, because of his particular fame/prestige and his issues, he's liable to overpower the other characters.

Why would any businessman want to risk two good-selling books just to get two characters together?

Anyway, I'm not trying to say that you should agree with the guy or that you shouldn't counter with your own. But the guy does have the right to state his opinions and to exercise his creative control for the benefit of the company.

Besides, he didn't actually succeed in killing Dick. Wiser heads prevailed...much to my own personal dismay. :-)

Wednesday, August 09, 2006  
Anonymous Jim said...

Kalinara - I think you and Didio missed the point about Dick Grayson.

Numer one the idea that he wil never inherent the mantle of Batman is actually very dumb. Bruce retiring and Dick as Batman opens up a world of new stories. By leaving one person as Batman the character himself has to be forced to change to find the modern sensibilities of the character. Therefore we end up with an asshole Batman for a few years that made no sense against his established character. The franchise is Batman, not Bruce Wayne.

Next Nightwing is unique. He is an athelte and a natural leader and less of a detective then Batman or even Tim Drake. He is also a much brighter character and formed his own group and under Marv Wolfman became his own man, without the need to worry about taking over Batman's role. Nightwing is a great vharacter in the right hands (not Devin Grayson).

Last the Babs and Dick marriage idea is a great one and again is loaded with years of story potential. Their marriage would be a celebration of the fact that occasionally our heroes can find their own happiness.

This is all of the top of my head and probably has some spelling errors, but I hope I make my point that advancing stories is more entertaining then treading water.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006  
Blogger Brainiac6 said...

Kalinara -

I have to say, I agree with Jim. I am biased as Nightwing is my favorite superhero and I have NEVER found him to be redundant... but biases aside I have never seen him as being much like Batman. Nightwing's always been a more vivacious character and has more obvious compassion than Batman. He's more of an acrobat than a detective (although well trained in that area he's more talented in physical combat and strategy as a leader) and he certaintly has better people skills than his mentor. In many ways he's a character that found the middle ground between the ideologies of Batman and Superman while finding his own path at the same time. This is the character he was intended to be... check out the Judas Contract as well as Chuck Dixon's Nightwing Year One (Devin Grayson and Bruce Jones have both horribly butchered the character and even Dan Didio has begun to realize his value).

Also, I can't see how letting Babs and Dick hook up semi-permanantly would damage either of the characters. They've always has a very sweet love story (again, Nightwing Year One is a good place to look) and if you read the Titans annual before Superboy died they obviouly set up Babs as Dick's true love. I'm not saying they have to get married - but developing their love story never hurt either of their comics in the past and I'm sure with talented writers like Gail Simone it wouldn't have to hurt their comics in the future either.

Of course Mr. Didio has every right to express his opinion and excercise creative control... just as I have every right to make fun of him. He's made plenty of positive impacts on the company - as a whole I think Crisis was a good idea and I love what he's done to restore Batman and Superman, but I think he misses the ball somtimes and as Nightwing is dear to me (not to mention the reason I started this blog) I feel no remorse in disagreeing with him.

And I have yet to like Batwoman... she still seems very two dimensional to me, as well as coming across as little more than a marketing ploy. Isis had just as much time to "develop" so far and her character comes across as much more thought out.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm glad the man in charge doesn't want Dick and Babs together. Dick deserves far better than a woman who kicks him when he's down, and the two of them together are about as pathetic as two little kids who refuse to grow up and accept that they suck together.

The only people in favor of Dick/Babs are the less intelligent fangirls who write godawful fan fic on about their SuperDuper babies.

Friday, August 11, 2006  
Anonymous Jim said...

Anonymous - You are wrong there are many others in favor of the Dick/Babs relationship.

Friday, August 11, 2006  
Blogger Brainiac6 said...

1. If you are going to call me a "less intelligent fangirl" I would ask that you no longer post on my website. That's very rude of you and I know plenty of intelligent comic book readers who like the idea of Dick and Babs together - including Jim who is most definatly not a "less intelligent fangirl".

2. You are intitled to your opinion but I ask that you restrain from name-calling.

3. Romance in comic books these days is severely lacking and I would love to see a bit more of it present. I think Dick and Babs make a wonderful couple and considering how both of them have, in the past, spoken about how much they care for eachother, I see no reason as to why DC can't let their love story progress.

Friday, August 11, 2006  
Blogger Chase said...

Kalinara -

I will agree with you on the point that Dick and Babs appearing in each others books would be tricky for the writing teams and a less than desirable business situation. However I also believe that a good story will more than make up for the extra work when it comes to counting sales.

As far as the chemistry between Dick and Babs goes I think I have to offer another perspective. First off let me say that Im not Nightwing's biggest fan. While the character idea is not entirely original I still find that he can be interesting and definitely his own character. The bigger problem is finding someone up to the task of writing an original story rather than taking an old road with a new car.

Could Dick and Babs work together? Maybe; There is definitely a spark between them that stems from friendship and kindred spirits. I'll agree that Babs is intelligent, capable, and independent but those are also reasons it could work. I don't think that Dick is as an emotionally dependent person as you believe and his striking out on his own is evidence of that. But because Babs is so independent she would love someone she wants to be around not someone she needs. She is the kind of girl who won't be anyone’s inferior and won't suffer having one. Could Dick be that equal? I think its possible. You said it yourself they both have strong personalities and I'm not sure where else she would look. He may not hold back about loving her but if that’s who she wanted I doubt she'd mind and I dare say might reciprocate. Otherwise her future would be a cold dead love life or not at all. I'm not sure what your personal experience has been nor do I wish to pry but a friendship like theirs is often the best foundations for a romance. I can't see them getting hitched after a week or giving up either one's ambitions for the sake of the other, but I could see minor appearances in each others books.

As for the anonymous poster, I work in a facility pioneering in Molecular Biology. My experiments require considerable reading and a hefty amount of calculations. I do not consider myself less intelligent. I am not Nightwing’s biggest fan and I my gender is masculine. I do not deny the possibilities between Dick and Babs. If you need reasons scroll up. Furthermore weak unsupported arguments are the desperate act of the unintelligent and anonymity is the shield of cowardice.

Friday, August 11, 2006  

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