Saturday, January 26, 2008

Winick And Churchill: Two April Fools Taking Another (Back) Stab At The Titans

Although we knew it was coming, the preview list of comic titles for the month of April left us depressed in the extreme as we saw that DC Comics was indeed pushing forward with a new Titans title in April by Judd Winick and Ian Churchill.

While under ordinary circumstances, a new Titans book featuring the original seven New Teen Titans of the classic Marv Wolfman/George Perez era would make us very happy, we are anxious as we think of just how badly Winick and Churchill are going to FUBAR the Wolfman/Perez classic characters.

Here’s the Upshot From DC Comics: A new team of Titans is born in the extra-sized first issue of a new ongoing monthly by Judd Winick, Ian Churchill and Norm Rapmund! Someone or something is continuing its attack on anyone who's ever been a Titan, including Nightwing, Starfire, Donna Troy, Beast Boy and Raven. You won't want to miss this new startling chapter in Titans history that may forge a new team from the ashes of old, dead friends.

As much as we adore the characters of the original New Teen Titans and as much as we would like to see them reunited in an ongoing title of their own, we have zero confidence in the ability of the new creative team—Winick “The Pointless” and “Cheesecake” Churchill—produce even a marginally satisfactory storytelling experience.

Exhibit A: November’s Teen Titan’s East Special.

Exhibit B: The review of the aforementioned Teen Titans East Special by Dan Phillips of back in November:

“Let's start with the opening flashback, which takes up a full sixteen pages and is about as original as any other superheroes vs. super-villains battle you'll find in any mediocre comic every written. Some bad attempts at witty dialogue are made, penciller Ian Churchill flexes his "muscles and boobs" style of art, and we're forced to watch as a battle of absolutely no consequence unfolds for entirely too long,” writes Phillips. “Once again, DC has proven that they are not above the worst type of clichéd, gimmicky and hackney attempts at sucking the blood out of past concepts and series. I can only hope this upcoming Titans East ongoing goes away as quickly as some of the other attempts at revitalizing a form of the original Wolfman/Perez team.”

It’s said that that the true test of someone’s intelligence is how much one agrees with you so we can say that Mr. Philips is really quite brilliant.

We had been holding out the thin hope that DC management would have gotten the memo given the ridicule and general bad reviews of the Titans East Special and either s**tcanned the project outright or perhaps even reshuffled the creative team at the 11th hour such as was done with the new Batman and the Outsiders.

Speaking of Outsiders, it was Winick’s involvement with BATO’s predecessor title that exacerbated our misgivings about this new Titans book.

Winick’s Outsiders featured Nightwing as team leader yet true to form; Winick was less than cooperative with the Nightwing creative team when it came to the sharing of the title character with the result that for all intent and purposes, there were two separate Nightwing characters out there contradicting one another.

We can only see double the problem if The Flash is featured on this team in addition to Nightwing.

As much as we love these characters, we just can’t see ourselves being complicit in their character assassination by supporting this title and giving tacit approval to Winick’s and Churchill’s lazy, aimless storytelling.

If you feel the same way, vote with your wallet and ignore Winick and Churchill’s Titans.


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