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DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

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DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Old 05-09-20, 10:01 PM
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DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

This year is the 80th anniversary of several characters including Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Flash, Robin, Joker & Catwoman. Wonder Woman, Flash and Robin already got their special edition celebration issues and Catowman and Joker are getting theirs later this year. But it kind of annoys me that DC has only focused on these characters and refused to celebrate others that have a good following. For example, last year it was the 80th anniversary of Captain Marvel (SHAZAM), Blue Beetle, Red Tornado and the Sandman. Only Batman and Superman were celebrated. This year this the 80th anniversary of Lex Luthor, Dr. Fate, Hawkman, Johnnie Thunder, Spectre, Black Condor, Congorilla, Uncle Sam, Hourman, Atom, The Ray, Max Mercury, and The Justice Society of America. I understand that all of them don't need/can't sell an individual special celebrating this anniversary but why has DC dropped the ball and not done a collection of stories mixing all these characters? I mean, the can make a great Justice Society special, showcasing each character turning 80 and one team oriented story at the end. Same thing with the Freedom Fighters. And Lex Luthor should have his special anniversary issue. He's on the top 3 list of DC's biggest villains.

Since DC is dropping the ball, at least there was artist Dan Schkade who made this great recreating of the first appearance of Dr. Fate

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Old 05-10-20, 01:18 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

I think the 80th Anniversary specials are really meant for casual fans and collectors. Not sure how many copies a Red Tornado anniversary special would sell.
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Old 05-10-20, 09:55 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Originally Posted by PhantomStranger
I think the 80th Anniversary specials are really meant for casual fans and collectors. Not sure how many copies a Red Tornado anniversary special would sell.
Like I said, Red Tornado doesn't need to have an individual special for the character itself, but could be put in with a Justice Society special or a Golden Age characters special. I'm sure there are plenty of talent who would love to work on such a thing.
Old 05-10-20, 10:47 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

The only reason I've heard of a lot of those characters is because Neil Gaiman used them for cameos in titles like Sandman and Books of Magic. People who know less about comics than I do, who are 90% of the world, have only heard of Lex Luthor. Where's the benefit for DC to spend money promoting characters that nobody cares about? They have had enough trouble keeping Wonder Woman in print.
Old 05-10-20, 12:13 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Bah, I'll bet they never gave Doctor Occult an 80th anniversary special back in 2015, bastards!

Old 05-10-20, 01:13 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Originally Posted by Nick Danger
The only reason I've heard of a lot of those characters is because Neil Gaiman used them for cameos in titles like Sandman and Books of Magic. People who know less about comics than I do, who are 90% of the world, have only heard of Lex Luthor. Where's the benefit for DC to spend money promoting characters that nobody cares about? They have had enough trouble keeping Wonder Woman in print.
Your evidence is anecdotal not factual. Plenty of people know who the Justice Society is. Freedom Fighters not so much, but still, DC should celebrate the milestone. I mean, Freedom Fighters had a mini-series last year, so people are aware of who the characters are.

And Wonder Woman is a top seller for DC. That's why she has her own series plus graphic novels and other mini-series throughout the year.
Old 05-10-20, 03:18 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

That Dr Fate story was great. An every five year anthology of anniversary stories celebrating the anniversaries of even minor characters for that year seems like a sellable idea to me. I’d buy them all!
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Old 05-14-20, 08:23 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Originally Posted by Red Hood
Your evidence is anecdotal not factual. Plenty of people know who the Justice Society is. Freedom Fighters not so much, but still, DC should celebrate the milestone. I mean, Freedom Fighters had a mini-series last year, so people are aware of who the characters are.

And Wonder Woman is a top seller for DC. That's why she has her own series plus graphic novels and other mini-series throughout the year.
I was responding to what you said, "Lex Luthor, Dr. Fate, Hawkman, Johnnie Thunder, Spectre, Black Condor, Congorilla, Uncle Sam, Hourman, Atom, The Ray, Max Mercury, and The Justice Society of America" People outside the comic book reading community do know about Justice Society and Lex Luthor, but that's about it.

Wonder Woman has been a top seller for DC for how long? Without looking it up, I'm working on the assumption that it's only been since the Gal Gadot movie. Over the last thirty years Batman has been consistent a top seller, but not so much Wonder Woman.
Old 05-14-20, 08:31 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

For a while they were publishing Wonder Woman just to keep the rights. The movie has, I'm sure, greatly elevated her popularity but not sure how that translates to comic book sales.
Old 05-14-20, 10:26 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Originally Posted by Nick Danger
I was responding to what you said, "Lex Luthor, Dr. Fate, Hawkman, Johnnie Thunder, Spectre, Black Condor, Congorilla, Uncle Sam, Hourman, Atom, The Ray, Max Mercury, and The Justice Society of America" People outside the comic book reading community do know about Justice Society and Lex Luthor, but that's about it.

Wonder Woman has been a top seller for DC for how long? Without looking it up, I'm working on the assumption that it's only been since the Gal Gadot movie. Over the last thirty years Batman has been consistent a top seller, but not so much Wonder Woman.
Hawkwamn, Spectre, Dr. Fate, Johnny Thunder, Hourman, and the Atom are all part of the Justice Society. The other ones, Uncle Sam, The Ray and Black Condor are part of the Freedom Fighters and are less recognizable, but I'm pretty sure that an 80th Anniversary special would have decent sales. Also, there's no excuse for DC to have missed the Captain Marvel and Blue Beetle 80th Anniversary. They should have reprinted their first appearances.

Originally Posted by fujishig
For a while they were publishing Wonder Woman just to keep the rights. The movie has, I'm sure, greatly elevated her popularity but not sure how that translates to comic book sales.
As for Wonder Woman, it has been a little over 15 years since they agreed with Marston estate to buy the publishing rights, trademarks and copyrights from Wonder Woman in it's entirety. As for sales, Wonder Woman has always been in the top 50-60 most sold books each months, even before the Gal Gadot movie. The amount of total copies sold is down now to 26K per issue (52K per months as it still a bi-weekly series), but it still on the top 50-60 depending on the month, which is a good spot to be for a bi-weekly title. Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Justice League, Flash and Green Lantern have been the consistent top titles for the company for the past 60 years.
Old 05-14-20, 11:44 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Very surprised they skipped Captain Marvel's 80th back in December. He had a successful movie and everything. Not even a peep. Maybe because he didn't originate from DC?
Old 05-14-20, 01:53 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Originally Posted by Red Hood
The other ones, Uncle Sam, The Ray and Black Condor are part of the Freedom Fighters and are less recognizable,
Well to be fair, those were originally Quality Comics characters until DC bought them and after that they were mostly relegated to Earth X during the pre-Crisis era, and even then they were never very popular or appeared very often, so those heroes not being recognizable is completely understandable. Hell, they were practically fourth rate characters even back in the 1940's.
Old 05-14-20, 01:54 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

I thought Captain Marvel rivaled Superman in popularity, one of the reasons DC bought the characters up?
Old 05-14-20, 02:03 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

I think also you've got to keep in mind greater cultural cache. Wonder Woman is a feminist icon. She is THE female superhero. She goes far beyond comics, TV, and film. Something that I desperately wish DC would realize about their biggest characters is that they aren't characters. They are ideas. I did a whole one-on-one course dealing with symbology in modern culture, including WW, in college with the woman who handled the Army's advertising campaign for a decade.

You can say similar (though not quite as high praise) things about Joker, Catwoman, and The Flash. GL is sort of on the bubble, there.

What I'd love is for them to publish something like The World's Greatest Superheroes collection from the 90s. Those books remain my favorite comics and are everything I wish the medium would aspire to be.

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Old 05-14-20, 04:18 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Yeah, Wonder Woman is pretty iconic. There's a reason why she was one of only three DC superheroes that still had comics published in the late 1940's-early 50's during the crime/horror comics boom when superhero comics were almost dead.

Old 05-14-20, 05:16 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Originally Posted by cultshock
Yeah, Wonder Woman is pretty iconic. There's a reason why she was one of only three DC superheroes that still had comics published in the late 1940's-early 50's during the crime/horror comics boom when superhero comics were almost dead.
I'm not sure how hot Wonder Woman's sales were back then. As stated earlier, after Marston died the deal reached with DC was that she had to be kept in publication constantly, no matter what the sales were, or the character would revert back to the estate. The focus shifted from feminism to love (with Trevor) and thoughts of marriage.

https://www.comicbookherald.com/wond...-age-struggle/
And so a new era was underway. Desperation was high, as Sensation ComicsĎ sales were no longer doing so hot. Everything under the sun was tried, from Diana selling newspapers and being presented as a model to declarations of Dianaís ascension in Hollywood, almost as if in declaration of aspirations, following the path of her peers Batman, Superman and Captain Marvel, whoíd all made it to screen by that point. But it all proved to be futile, as by 1952, Diana would lose Sensation altogether, thrown out of the book she once held and built with her iconic power. Instead, Sensation was to be anthology of other characters and story ideas, in desperate hope that something would catch on. Various creators, from John Broome to plenty more, would make an attempt to get a hit. But as it chugged along now as a mystery and horror tales book, it would finally meet its demise in 1953, marking the end of the remarkable legacy Diana spawned. The death of Sensation, this book built by and off of a feminist icon, was to be almost exactly a year before the formation of The Comics Code Authority. If that isnít a sign, what the hell is?
Now that was Sensation and Wonder Woman still had her own comic at the time, but she was all over the place: she was basically reinvented by Robert Kanigher and the formation of the Comics Code Authority to strip her of her Marston roots, the Wonder "family" was introduced (though only Donna Troy stuck around), she married a monster, she was completely reinvented again but without powers and with an Asian mentor as a spy. Nonetheless completely separate to anything going on with the comic, she became a feminist icon which completely ended the "new Wonder Woman" era of comics.

Her silver age is summed up in the article above as:
If youíve ever wondered ĎWhy isnít Wonder Womanís Silver Age talked about all that much in the way other characters are? Why isnít it collected?í Let all this help answer the questions of your soul. Predominantly, itís mostly awful, with few exceptions, written by fill-in writers. While Marvel was having its renaissance, with Jack Kirby doing Thor, Hulk, Fantastic Four, The Avengers, The X-Men, Black Panther and plenty more, while Superman was being reforged by Otto Binderís wild hurricane of ideas, while Green Lantern and Flash had the brilliantly weird and charming John Broomeís innovative talents to do seminal work, while even Batman got some neat Bill Finger stories and even Green Arrow made off with some scarce Kirby stories, poor Diana was stuck with Robert Kanigher for, literally, 20 years.

Two decades. Thatís a lot of time. Thatís a lot of damage. And even when other voices finally came in to do something, however different or new, the backlash culled that and brought him back again to the point, once again putting his influence all over Diana. (If youíll notice, itís why the only real collection of Silver Age Wonder Woman is this stellar OíNeil/Sekowsky Mod-Spy Era Diana Prince Omnibus, because that stuff is by far the best of the period.)
So again, no idea what the sales were like (or if they published such numbers before the Direct Market came into being), but I'm not sure she would've survived if not for the continual publishing mandate and the rise of feminism.

Of course, I'm in total agreement that she is deserving of an anniversary, regardless.
Old 05-14-20, 06:05 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

They shouldn't do a Wonder Woman 80th anniversary special this year since her character didn't make her first appearance until 1941.
Old 05-14-20, 08:44 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Originally Posted by The Valeyard
Very surprised they skipped Captain Marvel's 80th back in December. He had a successful movie and everything. Not even a peep. Maybe because he didn't originate from DC?
I'm guessing if the sequel was coming out already he would have gotten another push.
Old 05-15-20, 10:35 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

There's some sales data from Wonder Woman Vol 1 here.

https://www.comichron.com/titlespotl...womanvol1.html
Old 05-17-20, 11:26 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Green Lantern turns 80 today and the planned 100 page special is now in limbo due to the Covid-19



https://www.newsarama.com/49038-gree...ectacular.html
Old 05-17-20, 08:50 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

^ DC has it scheduled for June 23rd. Diamond says June 24th.

I went crazy on my Facebook page with anniversary stuff for GL this morning. Alan Scott is my favorite Lantern.
Old 05-17-20, 09:26 PM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Originally Posted by The Valeyard
^ DC has it scheduled for June 23rd. Diamond says June 24th.

I went crazy on my Facebook page with anniversary stuff for GL this morning. Alan Scott is my favorite Lantern.
Yeah, DC is releasing it Tuesday with DCBS and Midtown and Wednesday with Diamond.
Old 05-21-20, 01:40 AM
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Re: DC Comics Characters' 80th Anniversary

Neal Adam covers for GL 80th Anniversary.

https://13thdimension.com/first-look...iler-variants/


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