An Open Letter to DC Entertainment...
Dear DC Entertainment,
We need to have a talk.
You see, you’re coming off of two really great milestones, with both Superman and Batman celebrating 75 years. In those 75 years, both characters have ingrained themselves not only in America’s culture, but the world’s as well. You can wear a Superman or Batman shirt to any country in the world and be recognized. Hell, they were the only two comic book associated logos you could wear prior to the recent superhero movie boom and not be automatically labelled as a nerd. But sadly, with these milestones, it’s clear to anyone with eyes who the favorite child is. And while I’ve made jokes about “Bat-fatigue” and the like…this time…this time DC, you’ve finally done it. So I’m gonna type this out slowly.
I was fine with it, mostly. Sure, there was Beware the Batman…but it got cancelled. Sure there are the Arkham video games…but, well, aside from Origins, they pretty much kick ass…and even though I may be tired of Batman, I never tire of good games. What did me in? What was the straw that broke the camel’s back? Was it the fact that for Batman’s 75th he got a weekly series whereas Superman only got a 9 issue limited series that…oh…wait, we’re STILL WAITING for the last two issues. Like…for 6 months waiting. This isn’t just some ‘oh, the book shipped a month late boo hoo’ weak ass internet nerd rage. But even that…no. I was okay with that. Saved me some cash. Was it that the long awaited Adam West show will be making its way to DVD while the 2nd season of Superman and the Legion of Superheroes STILL hasn’t been released? No, if anything I can pick that up from a bootlegger on the internet. No…what killed it is when, like any despot, the conquering Bat decided to finally take over something that it had actually already had a foot in to begin with. THAT’S when you see what kind of a dick someone is. You were already welcomed…and so was everyone else…but no…it had to be yours and yours alone, Greedy McFuck. What I’m talking about is the DC Universe animated features.
For Superman’s 75th year, obviously the big deal was Man of Steel, although there was a DC Animated feature as well: Superman Unbound. I was pretty okay with that. Then, the kick in the nuts, Man of Steel’s sequel: Batman v Superman. Really? Come on. Batman takes over Superman’s goddamn franchise. Sigh…okay…whatever. Batman getting top billing will likely put more bat-asses in bat-seats. Fine. But the Animated features…that’s fair game for the entire DC universe. Sure there’s never been a Wonder Woman movie…but there’s a damn good one in the Animated features and there was always hope there’d be another one. And yeah, Batman had a presence there…Gotham Knight, Under the Red Hood, the Justice League features, the Superman/Batman features. But look at 2014: Son of Batman, Batman: Assault on Arkham, Justice League: Throne of Atlantis, Batman vs Robin. Notice something here? All 4 have Batman…THREE of them are Bat-centric.
You are aware that you have other characters, right DC? Green Arrow’s doing well on TV, with Flash and Constantine being very anticipated as well (and OF COURSE…there’s Gotham coming up too). Superman didn’t nearly have this kind of presence during his 75th…but dear God in heaven, I can’t swing a nuked cat without hitting something dealing with the goddamn Batman.
Look, I’m sure you’re sick of damn near everyone doing this…but come on…as a business, do yourself a favor and look at what your Marvelous competition is doing. Yes, damn near everything on the comic book side of the house is the Wolverine Show…and that’s why I don’t buy their comics. But I do my best to see every Marvel Studios film. Why? Because Iron Man isn’t shoe-horned into every Captain America movie. Hell, Guardians of the Galaxy didn’t have a single goddamn Avenger in it. Marvel allows their film characters to live and breathe in their own adventures…all the while tying them together in a cohesive universe. For example (and yes, nerds, I know this is impossible due to where the film licenses are and such), say they go for a second Hulk movie…but the grosses on the first were disappointing…so they decide “Let’s throw in Wolverine! INSTANT MONEY!!!” No. Marvel has shown they have confidence in their stories and their characters. You? “Oh noes! Man of Steel only made $668 million! Not a billion! Bring in Batman or we’re screwed!!!”
A brand only takes you so far, DC. Yes, everyone knows Batman and everyone (except for me and maybe 4 other poor bastards on the planet) loves Batman. But the public is fickle. After all, could someone from the 40’s or 50’s predicted just how far away the public would move away from Superman? If you put all your energy into one character and something happens…like…say…Joel Schumacher’s Batman and Robin for instance…well, the old adage of eggs and baskets comes to mind. Nurture your other properties. Hell, the next character due up for their 75th is Wonder Woman…and she’s been HORRIBLY underused in ANY media. But outside of that…you have an entire UNIVERSE of characters. Let me tell you a story, when I was a kid, I was a fan of Iron Man comics…so much so that one year, I dressed up as Iron Man for Halloween. You know what happened? Not a single goddamn person knew who I was dressed up as…and it was depressing. If I did that now? Big change. Why? Because Marvel had faith that one of their “non A-list” characters had enough strength both in character and story for a movie that would appeal to a wide audience. And thanks to the current string of hits that comprises the Marvel Cinematic Universe, turns out they were right.
You? It’s like the goddman Batman TV series from the 60s…EVERYTHING has a “Bat-“ in front of it.
Be smart DC. Diversify. Do it for your own sake. Do it for your survival. Do it so that I don’t get arrested for killing every motherfucker I see wearing a bat logo. Ahem. I don’t mean that. But I might just start working on a time machine so I can erase Bob Kane and Bill Finger from existence. That…that I would do.
Nuking the Cat Management