OK, just read issue #0.  It involves the current iteration of Nova, who is apparently a kid named Sam Alexander, whose father was an old drunk who claimed to have been an intergalactic space hero, and who eventually disappeared. In time, the son discovers that the old man had been an intergalactic space hero and ends up becoming the new Nova himself. I'm not familiar with this version of the character, so I can't say how long he's been around. I remember reading the original Nova nearly forty years ago - I don't have any great memories of him except that he was drawn by Carmine Infantino for awhile.

 

Anyway, our Sam fights a robot version of Tomazooma and meets the Avengers and asks them about the Watcher and finds out that while they know the Watcher watches, they don't know why. So, he goes to the Moon and gives the Watcher a rock and Utau Atua Utapau Uatu shows him his home movies of how his Dad (Uatu's, I mean, not Sam's) was the one who had the bright idea of giving the Prosilicans nuclear energy and we all know how that worked out.  Is this new?  I don't remember it being U Thant Utrecht Uatu's old man who did that. Anyway, Sam asks Uatu just how much he watches and Uatu blows his mind by showing him scenes from old issues of What If.  Anyway, Sam realizes that what Uatu is really hoping to see is a world where his dad wasn't wrong. Sam commiserates and says that he wishes his father wasn't a screw-up, too, then asks Uatu what happened to his (Sam's, not Uatu's) dad, and after a slight pause, Uatu tells Sam that his dad is still alive. (Say, isn't that sort of "interfering", Uatu, old son?).  Sam goes off happy and Uatu puts the rock on a shelf. 

 

A mildly interesting story, and the art is nice enough.

 

Say, the Watcher apparently has an armory - he's really loaded for bear - where he keeps the Ultimate Nullifier. How'd he end up with it? I thought Galactus took that back after Reed made him promise to leave Earth after threatening to blow his head off with it.

 

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Actually Mantis and Tigra both felt they weren't worthy either. That's why Tigra left after a couple of issues and I believe Mantis didn't officially join until she was leaving to go off in space with that body snatching plant. I believe Gilgamesh also had problems thinking he was worthy, which was why he had no face in his first appearances. Difficult to feel someone belongs on a team if they keep saying they don't think they should be there.
As for Reed being on the Avengers, why would the leader of one team join another? Spying out the competition? Was the FF broke and really needed the money Tony Stark pays Avengers?

I can't remember those issues at all, I think at the time the FF was comprised of Ben, Sharon, Johnny and Crystal and Reed stuck with the Avengers to help them work on the Vision. Funny thing, characters then wondering if they were good enough to be an Avenger and now I'm hard pressed to think of someone in the mu who isn't/hasn't been an Avenger.

I think Reed joined after the Avengers broke up when everyone left after Dr Druid took over and turned evil. Somebody apparently thought putting him on the team would help it reboot. I remember they made a big deal about the fact the Avengers was breaking up and then reforming.

Richard Mantle said:

It is very easy for those of us that have watched comics for any lengthy period to feel that 'our' comicdom is gone. Easy to think what they're producing now would never have been done 'in-my-day'.

Your outlook seems to be similar to mine. If you are willing to put up with all the changes, keep on buying and reading the same titles. If you're unhappy, vote with your wallet and buy something you DO like. Doing something, including reading, that makes you unhappy most of the time just isn't good for you. I only buy a couple of Nu52 books and a few Vertigos (three of which are ending soon)and no Marvels. I am discovering a number of comics (in trade form) from other publishers and am happy with them.

As much as I love what Stan Lee and Julius Schwartz did in "my day," I think the current management has realized that they can't afford to cater to the tastes of readers (us) who want to recreate the old comics styles. Trying to do that would probably be like nailing Jello to a tree. Also, the number of buyers for that product probably wouldn't keep their doors open. They have to find NEW readers if they are to stay in business as more than trademark protection. 

Mark S. Ogilvie said:

I liken it to a sporting team that you knew in your youth, that you supported for year after year until you finally realized that the owners were never going to put enough money onto the field to win a championship, that they'd always go just far enough to put a good team on the field, but not a great one because the fans kept showing up anyway.

And when they DO spend a lot of money the ticket prices go up so high that most fans can't afford them.

I can understand that and I do vote with the wallet (which seems to have about as much effect on Marvel as voting in actually elections has on the outcome) and I can understand the current generation probably views heroism, loyalty, honor and principle differently than I do, but when I see in a recap or review what the Illuminati and particularly Dr. Strange is doing in Avengers or who Prof X married in X-men, the knife twists a bit as I remember the heroes of my youth. I grew up with these characters, their stories taught me a lot and that reaction is just not going to go away and every so often that reaction is going to be expressed.



Richard Willis said:

Richard Mantle said:

It is very easy for those of us that have watched comics for any lengthy period to feel that 'our' comicdom is gone. Easy to think what they're producing now would never have been done 'in-my-day'.

Your outlook seems to be similar to mine. If you are willing to put up with all the changes, keep on buying and reading the same titles. If you're unhappy, vote with your wallet and buy something you DO like. Doing something, including reading, that makes you unhappy most of the time just isn't good for you. I only buy a couple of Nu52 books and a few Vertigos (three of which are ending soon)and no Marvels. I am discovering a number of comics (in trade form) from other publishers and am happy with them.

As much as I love what Stan Lee and Julius Schwartz did in "my day," I think the current management has realized that they can't afford to cater to the tastes of readers (us) who want to recreate the old comics styles. Trying to do that would probably be like nailing Jello to a tree. Also, the number of buyers for that product probably wouldn't keep their doors open. They have to find NEW readers if they are to stay in business as more than trademark protection. 

Mark S. Ogilvie said:

But every comic can be someone's last comic too. I liken it to a sporting team that you knew in your youth, that you supported for year after year until you finally realized that the owners were never going to put enough money onto the field to win a championship, that they'd always go just far enough to put a good team on the field, but not a great one because the fans kept showing up anyway. You finally stop going to the games but you can't resist looking at the sports page every now and then. When marvel puts out something as ridiculous as this I really, really do not want to care, but it's like that sporting team when you read they've traded away a great player for a couple of draft choices because that player was asking for a bit too much money; you care. There's just too much history not to.

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A great post, Richard. There's often something to incense us in the comics we love... something we forget about as we gloss over those comics as a golden age as we get up in arms about the latest "atrocity." 

Richard Mantle said:

If I read this part of the thread correctly - this debate is about thes state of the Marvel universe creativly etc (?)
It is very easy for those of us that have watched comics for any lengthy period to feel that 'our' comicdom is gone. Easy to think what they're producing now would never have been done 'in-my-day'.
I felt like that throughout the entire Bendis era of the Avengers- hated what he did to 'my' favourites.
I have to accept though that he has his own fans who loved what he did. It's also his era that appears to have led to their prominence and argueably their silver screen success...and yet I still don't like what he did.
It's not 'my' comics.
When I look at that deeper, however, I find that before the Bendis era - I hated the Crossing Saga, thought the 'Heroes Reborn' concept was sacrillige and felt Deathcry and Rage were not worthy of Avengers membership.
Then I realise I didn't think Gilgamesh was up to much and I activly hated the concept of Mr Fantastic and the Invisible Woman joining the team back as far as crica #300.
Having said that, I was appalled at the time that 'my' team allowed the likes of Tigra to join back in the early #200s and before that never felt Mantis 'worthy'.
In other words - and forgive by rambling - I haven't been 'happy' with 'my' favourites for most of my comics collecting history!
I think that's the point!
This whole post shows how much the creators DO make me CARE.
If I wanted 'old-fashioned' I'd buy nothing but Essential/Showcase....they all have their part but everything moves on.
Nightcrawler is back from the dead.
Gwen Stacey was 'of-questionable-morals'
Nick Fury is moving on from Warhorse to Super-spy to Rigellian Recorder...
Thimngs change.
Soemthings we like somethings we don't.
"Every comic is someone's first comic".

Like Marvel going bankrupt twice over the years because of bad distribution decisions. Nobody in the 90s bothered to look back at what happened in 1957.

Just because everything wasn't brilliant (or even always coherent) back in the day (whichever "day" that was), does that mean that there's nothing wrong with the quality of comics today?  After all, "back in the day", for me at least, was when comics were written with a audience of 5-10 year old boys as a target, and no reason to believe that most of them would be reading every issue of any given series in order, so it was considered no big deal if Atlantis was completely different every few issues, because no one was keeping track of that sort of thing (theoretically).  These days, comics' target audience is older, and not only better educated (if only be virtue of having made it to High School age) but with Google, one doesn't even need to be the kind of geek to own a copy of Bullfinch's Mythology to know that Skadi was an actual figure in Norse mythology who had nothing to do with hammers, Evil, or dark serpent gods, no matter what "Fear Itself" said.  Shouldn't the standards be higher now than they used to be?

Dave Elyea said:

Just because everything wasn't brilliant (or even always coherent) back in the day (whichever "day" that was), does that mean that there's nothing wrong with the quality of comics today?  After all, "back in the day", for me at least, was when comics were written with a audience of 5-10 year old boys as a target, and no reason to believe that most of them would be reading every issue of any given series in order, so it was considered no big deal if Atlantis was completely different every few issues, because no one was keeping track of that sort of thing (theoretically).  These days, comics' target audience is older, and not only better educated (if only be virtue of having made it to High School age) but with Google, one doesn't even need to be the kind of geek to own a copy of Bullfinch's Mythology to know that Skadi was an actual figure in Norse mythology who had nothing to do with hammers, Evil, or dark serpent gods, no matter what "Fear Itself" said.  Shouldn't the standards be higher now than they used to be?

Depends. What "standards" are we talking about?

As for the example given above, I would give the writer creative license on that, especially as I haven't read the story you're referring to and likely never will. After all, the whole business of Thor and his cohorts appearing in Marvel comics bends Norse mythology into knots.

The highest standard I want upheld is that my comics are entertaining. My most frequent complaint here is that too many comics attempt to arrive at that by being "realistic" and miss the mark because their creators define "realistic" as being brutal, sordid, and depressing.

Do I want someone keeping track of the continuity before the stories are published? Sure. Do I think keeping track of the continuity makes for better stories? Sometimes, and sometimes it gives us history lessons disguised as stories. That's not what I want from comics.

Do I want stories that are plausible? Yes. I love the current She-Hulk series in part because it is FAR better at that kind of thing than past iterations of the title. I don't read it and think, "That CAN'T be right!" as I have with past She-Hulk comics. It helps, much, that the current writer of She-Hulk is a lawyer. I'm not a lawyer, so I figure I shouldn't be able to spot the holes in such stories, although I have no doubt a lawyer would.

That said, I don't necessarily (necessarily) want my comics writers to be so concerned about the intricacies of the legal field or Norse mythology or who the chef was at Prince Namor's favorite sushi restaurant from Sub-Mariner #47 that they don't deliver an entertaining story.

Pretty sure a completely difficult Skadi appeared once somewhere in the 60s. I think it was some kind of monster.

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