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mygif

Nothing with Superman Prime in it is good.

He was an awkward character to have around during Crisis on Infinite Earths, and even though he and his alternate-universe brethren were given about as good an ending as a fictional character can have, no, they drag them back into the fray in Infinite Crisis and either corrupt or kill them (or in the case of Alex Luthor, both). And unless I missed a geek meeting, there was no massive outpouring for these characters to be unearthed. Prime’s a character with such a convoluted and contrived backstory that that seems reason enough to exile him to the dustbin of infinity, but saddle him with the Supermanchild persona and he’s not even a feasible character anymore, just a naked narrative construct for death, destruction and dismemberment. “Tedious” doesn’t scratch the surface.

But I have to believe Grant Morrison realizes this. (Also the idea of Prime being responsible — for anything — is just laughable.) My vote is the Source, and God knows what Morrison’s reimagining it as. I’ll be keeping an eye on it from a distance.

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mygif

Okay, now I want to see Tolkien writing modern comics.

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malakim2099 said on February 13th, 2008 at 11:20 am

Tolkien writing modern comics would rock so hard. Of course, I suspect he would also be having Ultimates levels of lateness.

In regards to Supermanboy-Emo-Prime? I’m so glad that he was apparently blown the hell up. Though I do think that the Final Crisis will revolve around Darkseid. At least, that’s my hope, anyway. Dude is one of the biggest bads in the DC universe, treat him like that instead of an ineffectual punching bag for Superman once every six-eight months or so.

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mygif

With you on the Doonesbury thing. It’s the only American newspaper strip I can actually take seriously; it’s been running in the Irish Times since long before I was old enough to get the jokes, which means I’ve had enough time to see stories develop, characters grow old and die, children be born and grow up… unlike with other American strips, where all I ever get to see is one or two isolated strips that don’t amount to much on their own.

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mygif

I’ll give you that the grand majority of material with Emo Boy Prime is annoyingly bad, but I think his one-shot during Sinestro Corps was decent. I like the idea of a pathetic, simpering man-child with giant persecuation complex and all the powers of Superman as a villain, for the same reason I enjoy ideas like a rogue Captain Marvel and Johnny Bates: children’s minds can be very scary when you give them the ability to enact their impulses upon the world. The problem being, there are apparently few people at DC who can write a character like that without making him a whine factory. The one-shot at least had the virtue of pushing it into terrifying absurdy — Aquaman must die, because he shouldn’t be using a sword! On top of that, Johns at least understood that if you’re going to have the entire Teen Titans and JSA fight what is essentially Superman, you might as well do something big like make it a running fight across the continental United States.

Morrison might be able to do something with SBP, but he’d definately have to be at the top of his game to turn back the spiral of suck that character’s been stuck in.

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Milkman Dan said on February 13th, 2008 at 1:45 pm

It is my firm belief that Superman-Prime succeeds at comedy relief, so he’s not entirely useless as a character.

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mygif

Ultimate FF is one of the books I’ve been reading every couple of months at the local library, usually after three or four issues pile up. It’s not bad. There’s that fine line between enjoying the read and feeling like I’m personally killing the book by not paying for it, but I can’t buy every damn thing.

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mygif

I like Superman Prime. I think it’s funny as hell to have an answer to “what if the average comic fan was in a comic book and also had Superman’s powers.”

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mygif

I heartily wish every day that someone at Marvel will have an epiphany and start the creation of Ultimate Ghost Rider.

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mygif

In regards to Doonesbury, I know at least the early 70’s stuff was collected into myriad novel-sized digests, way back in the day. I get the impression they might have been edited for length, though.

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mygif

UFF was a great book for me for a while, and I was getting the trades religiously, but the recent changes in artists (especially the current one, Kirkham) have turned me off from the series.

I feel that Carey had really contributed some stories to the UFF that have the originality I have come to appreciate in writers like Ellis and Morrison, but if the art is sub-par, it makes for a horrible combination.

Maybe I’ll get it again one day in the future, depending on what happens to it the title in Ultimatum…

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mygif

I gave up on the Ultimate universe when I realized that it wasn’t of finite duration. As a finite series, it could work–cherry-pick the best Marvel stories, re-present them in a “greatest hits” sort of package, use the good stuff and build it to a really cool climax, then let it end. But if it’s of unlimited duration, and it never moves past pastiche, then sooner or later, I realized, they’ll have to cannibalize all the crappy stories that they supposedly restarted the Marvel Universe to avoid, lame characters and ideas that were mistakes the first time around, and are even bigger mistakes now that they know they’re mistakes and are making them anyway. So I dropped it.

Since that time, we’ve had Ultimate Cable, Ultimate Stryfe, Ultimate Onslaught, and the Ultimate Clone Saga.

I should probably start picking horse races. :)

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mygif

I’m still highly dubious that Final Crisis will actually pick up on ANY threads from Countdown to Final Crisis.

Doesn’t anyone remember Countdown to Infinite Crisis? The seemingly endless parade of miniseries and tie-in issues? Were any of those about Alexander Luthor and Superboy Prime conspiring to recreate the Multiverse? No, because DC didn’t want to give away that shocking reveal until Infinite Crisis #1, which meant they couldn’t reveal the plot of the entire Inifnite Crisis story during their entire Countdown to said story. So we got something like two years of buildup about OMACs and Spectre stepping on shit, and then Infinite Crisis ends up being about something else entirely, with a very nominal attempt to tie everything together by having Alex build a macguffin out of discarded OMAC parts and unsold issues of Day of Vengeance. (To be fair, the explanation of what all the stuff had to do with Alex’s plan made sense; it just wasn’t so fascinating that we needed to see all of it before Alex showed up to explain what he needed with it.)

At best, Darkseid, the Source, and Superman-Prime’s actions in Countdown are being manipulated by some unseen power who’s the real antagonist in Final Crisis. But that antagonist’s plans are probably going to have bugger-all to do with Granny Goodness operating a women’s shelter or Jimmy Olsen having wacky super powers.

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mygif

Great. Now I want to see Johnny Bates take on Superboy Prime. Just when I thought DoublePlusBad EmoBoy had no purpose at all.

(And just so we’re clear, Bates would obliterate Prime. Slowly and painfully.)

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mygif

I don’t know if they’re still in print, but the first several years of “Doonesbury” were collected into five or six very large paperbacks in the early-mid eighties. As a wee sprout, I inhaled them all, and was thus the only kid in my age cohort who had a decent knowledge of Watergate and the course of the Vietnam War. (A gag strip about the secret bombings in Cambodia is my favorite Doonesbury strip of all time. However, twelve year old boys in Ronald Reagan’s America weren’t supposed to know about such things.) These books were well worth reading. A full “Doonesbury” collection is necessary, dammit! Perhaps not in the Fantagraphics “giant hardcover volumes” approach, which are meant to be archives of dead strips, but something big and mighty nevertheless.

The artist for “Final Crisis” had an interview on Newsarama, where he claimed that FC wasn’t originally intended to be any sort of “crisis” at all. Instead, Morrison had this big story idea, and editorial later decided to make it into the third “crisis.” That gives me hope that it may not suck as much. Then again, who knows how much editorial has monkeyed with the story after deciding it needed to be the “third in the Crisis trilogy.” It also suggests that Superboy-Prime won’t be the key player. I’m betting it’ll be The Source.

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mygif

With you on Doonesbury. They print it in the Guardian here and every time I read one I think “yeah this is pretty funny. But I sure wish I knew who the hell these people were.”

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mygif

I want to take back what I said about SBP. Because I dawned on me with… horrifying clarity what he truly was.

A thinly-written Bizarro. The X-treme 90’s remake of Bizarro, if you will. Even if his career as a villain didn’t start until the early 2000s.

And damnit, a storyline about Bizarro confronting Superman over the Justice League’s supposed moral decay would’ve been awesome….

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El Bastardo Magnifico said on February 14th, 2008 at 6:43 pm

First: Shame on you for the Bizarro comparison.

Second: I think the best thing Morrison could do with Superboy Prime is kill him. Preferably by having the Flash punch him in the face after running around the Earth 3,000,000 times in under a millisecond and launching him into Rao.

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mygif

I would also like ultimate ghost rider, but am scared they about how the will mess it up

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mygif

sorry for my bad spelling i was talking to someone at the time and was distracted.

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mygif

Wouldn’t an evil Superman with a knowledge of comics be Secret Original from the Filth?

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mygif

87-89 the weakest period for Doonesbury? Come now! We’re talking about when Zonker was in the House of Lords! JJ left Mike for the first time! JJ gave birth to Alex on cable! Duke was president of a condoms company! Duke was committed to Bellvue! Duke was Donald Trump’s yacht captain! Phil went to white collar prison! Mr. Butts! Ron Headrest! Hunk-Ra! George Bush the Invisible Man! The Skull and Bones Society! The development of the “multi-camera” visual style! Sure, it’s probably the period that most suggested that Trudeau may have been abusing recreational drugs, but I’d say the strip’s nadir would be somewhere in the late 90’s, perhaps around the point when he decided Zipper was bound to catch on with readers.

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mygif

Hunk-Ra and Invisible George are honestly two of the lowest points for Doonesbury – a stupid joke and an irrelevant one. I mean, in 1989 George Bush was everywhere, practically a political rock star (as weird as that sounds).

It didn’t really pick up until the first Gulf War got started.

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mygif

The invisibility was never about a lack of profile, but about a lack of substance, about how Bush didn’t stand for anything (though the joke about “President Un-Dukakis” put it a bit more succinctly). Of course Bush’s Gulf War undermined this point, but Trudeau’d already been drawing him as a point of light for over two and a half years by that point.

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mygif

Gotta admit, I agree with all the points that you bring up about Mike Carey’s UFF run but I *still* find it almost impenetrably dull. I always feel like he has good ideas for what to do with the FF, but then fails to make the FF enough of a focus for the narrative and also fails to make the new villains and the exposition of the latest big ideas sufficiently fun and interesting to compensate. Whenever I read it I keep feeling like I should be more involved than I actually am.

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