The Smell of Desperation
NOTE: My colleague Jon Del Arroz wrote about this already but there was a development today.
They say that the prospect of being hanged focuses the mind.
They never said it would be focused on anything good.
American comic books are doomed. This is actually nothing new. They’ve been failing for a while but COVID put a brick on the accelerator of a car that was already out of control and hurtling off a cliff.
Consequently, those few survivors of the DC Red Wedding are completely dialed-in on the tasks that are immediately in front of them and not looking at the big picture. That is because there is nothing at all they can do about the big picture. It’s kind of a targeted panic.
At the center of this focus of effort, is the all-important drive to attract SJW Tumblrinas as their new and vastly preferred readership. Forget about fat middle-aged men with ponytails and penetrating body odor who hasn’t let anything come between them and their comics pull-list since 1986. They want skinny guys in straight leg jeans with purple man-buns and non-binary things that look like that blob on the cover. They don’t want people who buy comics but WILL cheer for this garbage. Let me stress, they will NEVER buy I Am Not Starfire, but they will talk about how fierce and brave it is on Twitter and the Mary Sue.
This is the active courting of a non-paying audience.
Loyal Reader: How do you know they aren’t buying, oh, Herald of the Dark?
The six-figure sales rank on Amazon is kind of a give-away.
The truth is that the YA market was the market to try and get into ten years ago. Now it’s incredibly over-saturated. But the bigger problem is, who the hell would want to read this thing?
Here’s the blurb:
“Seventeen-year-old Mandy, daughter of Starfire, is NOT like her mother. Starfire is gorgeous, tall, sparkly, and a hero. Mandy is NOT a sparkly superhero. Mandy has no powers, is a kid who dyes her hair black and hates everyone but her best friend Lincoln. To Starfire, who is from another planet, Mandy seems like an alien, like some distant angry light years away moon.
And it’s possible Mandy is even more distant lately, ever since she walked out on her S.A.T.s. Which, yeah, her mom doesn’t know.
Everyone thinks Mandy needs to go to college and become whoever you become at college, but Mandy has other plans. Mandy’s big plan is that she’s going to move to France and…do whatever people do in France. But then everything changes when she gets partnered with Claire for a school project. Mandy likes Claire (even if she denies it, heartily and intensely). A lot.
How do you become the person you’re supposed to be when you don’t know what that is? How do you become the person you’re supposed to be when the only thing you’re sure of is what you’re not?”
I’ll just wait right here in case you have to go splash whiskey in your eyes after reading that.
Okay, moving on.
Mandy reeks of self-indulgence. Almost as if she is a less than attractive author’s self-insert.
Hmmm… Lets take a quick look at Mariko Tamaki.
Starfire is basically a Dejah Thoris, which I like on general principle. She is also Dick Grayson’s love interest or at least she was last I checked. She may be another DC lesbian by now, I have no to tell that won’t involve me looking at modern DC comics.
The thing is that Mandy’s father isn’t mentioned at all in this blurb. Which makes me think that Starfire and Nightwing had a huge blowup about her too close of a friendship with Penguin after Mandy reached a certain age.
In summary: This book is about some fat Goth goblin with tons of Mommy issues. It does not appeal to comic book readers, young adults or anyone else. And has a very low sales rank for such a high-profile work.
Today they have hired Mariko Tamaki to write Batman for them.
I shit you not. That really happened.