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Cyber Bowling

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I'm enjoying Joker War more than I'd like, but it definitely isn't having as big of an impact as it should because of Joker fatigue. I also don't get all the hype surrounding Punchline. It feels like DC is trying to market has as the breakout character, and people were buying up overpriced copies of a Nightwing issue because the word "punchline" was used. Not even in reference to the character. I wouldn't go so far as to call her a bad character, but that's because I wouldn't normally even call her a character. It feels like she's a glorified extra, the generic "thug boss" person you throw into a story when you want the stakes to be higher, but can't put the main villain into the scene because then the story would end. In video game terms, she's essentially a mid dungeon mini boss.

Empyre was weird, especially since it was supposed to be a big event. I was reading the first few issues, stopped for what I thought was a week or two, and now it feels like the event has been over for years and is already forgotten about. Slightly related, but outlawed is still apparently going on. I always thought that was a lackluster idea to begin with, but it was just funny to see it referenced again after all this time when pretty much every other title (at least that I read) dropped it ages ago. I can cut them on slack since that has more to do with Covid shutting down the industry, which I'm sure had some kind of impact on Empyre as well.

I'm glad 5G ended up dying, even if I was kinda looking forward to seeing how much of a trainwreck it was going to be. I don't have high hopes for Endless Winter, which sounds a lot like a retread of that old event from the 90's I can't even remember the name of where Hal Jordan redeemed himself by reigniting the sun. Jon Stewart is supposedly playing a big role in it, so maybe we'll even end up with a similar ending.

Not sure if anyone read it/cares, but they released a Milestone comic #0. It was pretty bland, but I thought it was funny how they updated Static's origin. He's being bullied at school by some white kids, then after school he goes to a BLM protest to impress some girl. Said bullies just happen to be passing by the protest, spot Static out of the crowd of people and decide that's the best place to try and beat him up. Then the group gets teargassed, Virgil gets his powers, and so do the bullies. It was just incredibly hamfisted and lazy. Part of it I'm sure has to do with the fact they only had 3 or 4 pages to show each Milestone character, but given Static is the one that most people are familiar with/probably the only reason people are picking up the comic in the first place, you'd think they'd make more of an effort with him.
 
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JimiHendrix

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DC's scenes where Ted died pre-Infinite Crisis were very suitable for the character.

I think Joker's going to be let to rest after they're done with the Batman who laughs and The Three Jokers. Like, a fullass at least 6 month break from him. Riddler was a threat fairly recently too, like mid 2019ish in the year of the villain. The real question is when will they make the Penguin threatening again.
I don't remember him doing anything in year of the villain aside from that weird "Nygma you should give up being a criminal" "ok i'll give up being a criminal.............................actually i'm gonna be a criminal even harder now"

yeah at the start of Tynions run Riddler did something, for like, 3 issues, but that was again just in the grand scheme a Joker plot.

and if you wanna really grasp for content with Oswald, BWL did say Penguin is ultimately Batmans final villain and sometimes wins in other universes.
 

Czargon the Red

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I don't remember him doing anything in year of the villain aside from that weird "Nygma you should give up being a criminal" "ok i'll give up being a criminal.............................actually i'm gonna be a criminal even harder now"

yeah at the start of Tynions run Riddler did something, for like, 3 issues, but that was again just in the grand scheme a Joker plot.

and if you wanna really grasp for content with Oswald, BWL did say Penguin is ultimately Batmans final villain and sometimes wins in other universes.
They just hyped Riddler's innate abilities further and he got a creepier design for a bit.

Then they turned the channel to Joker. Got The Designer was a waste.

Penguin wins because he just runs a club instead of trying to make a dirigible explode over gotham with joker gas.
 

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They just hyped Riddler's innate abilities further and he got a creepier design for a bit.

Then they turned the channel to Joker. Got The Designer was a waste.

Penguin wins because he just runs a club instead of trying to make a dirigible explode over gotham with joker gas.
you hear about Tynions original idea for The Designer? He wanted to make him The Savior in disguise, the evil future version of Tim Drake.

He wanted to follow up on his plots and general style from his run on Detective Comics, but DC has apparently mandated no more Batfamily books, so the Batman title is Batman only and he was denied these ideas.
 
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Cyber Bowling

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I don't remember him doing anything in year of the villain aside from that weird "Nygma you should give up being a criminal" "ok i'll give up being a criminal.............................actually i'm gonna be a criminal even harder now"

yeah at the start of Tynions run Riddler did something, for like, 3 issues, but that was again just in the grand scheme a Joker plot.

and if you wanna really grasp for content with Oswald, BWL did say Penguin is ultimately Batmans final villain and sometimes wins in other universes.
I forgot about the year of the villain thing with Riddler. It was actually a cool setup that I wish they had followed through on. This might also be nostalgia talking because I admit I don't remember the specifics, but I believe it was right before new 52 where Riddler was setup as more of a anti hero/not blatantly a villain private investigator. I want to say he was trying to take down Calculator back when he was the evil version of Oracle. It seemed like an interesting direction to take the character.

I think the reason there's not too many Riddler stories is because he's much harder to write than a traditional villain. Kinda like how it's easier to design a good boss fight in a video game/table top, but much harder to come up with a good puzzle. If you look at the last big Batman arcs, it's basically boiled down to "Villain X who knows Bruce is Batman takes over the city and Batman doesn't have access to his usual resources because of it." I'd love for a new writer with a fresher take to step in and maybe do some smaller scale stories with some of the neglected bat villains.
 
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JimiHendrix

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I forgot about the year of the villain thing with Riddler. It was actually a cool setup that I wish they had followed through on. This might also be nostalgia talking because I admit I don't remember the specifics, but I believe it was right before new 52 where Riddler was setup as more of a anti hero/not blatantly a villain private investigator. I want to say he was trying to take down Calculator back when he was the evil version of Oracle. It seemed like an interesting direction to take the character.

I think the reason there's not too many Riddler stories is because he's much harder to write than a traditional villain. Kinda like how it's easier to design a good boss fight in a video game/table top, but much harder to come up with a good puzzle. If you look at the last big Batman arcs, it's basically boiled down to "Villain X who knows Bruce is Batman takes over the city and Batman doesn't have access to his usual resources because of it." I'd love for a new writer with a fresher take to step in and maybe do some smaller scale stories with some of the neglected bat villains.

yeah you're thinking of before the New 52, Nygma got his OCD cured so he didn't feel the compulsive need to prove his intelligence and all that, but still really liked puzzles and wanted to solve them, so he became a private investigator. If I recall he wasn't even an anti-hero, just a straight up PI and worked both for the Gotham City Sirens and Batman on different occasions.

it was a really cool direction for the character. Hell he even saved Nightwings life at one point after Nightwing was shot in the gut by Vigilante.

Riddler is harder to write I imagine because he has the problem all smart characters have, where he has to be written by a smart person to make sense. I remember there was a Flash story that was Riddler vs Flash and it was written by someone who clearly just "well if I was going to kill the Flash, I'd do this" and it was stupid. Was literally just Riddler sells a bunch of lil robots to the citys police, then takes control of the robots and makes them target individual civilians. Barry can't be every where at once, so he has to surrender, then he tricks Riddler to recalling all the robots to one location so Barry can destroy them all.

it was very stupid.
 

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I think the reason there's not too many Riddler stories is because he's much harder to write than a traditional villain.
Riddler is harder to write I imagine because he has the problem all smart characters have, where he has to be written by a smart person to make sense.
It's possible to not be a genius and write a genius, but it's still very tough and only gets tougher the dumber and less talented you are. There's two standard tricks: you give them extraordinary abilities to read people so they can somehow know what people are thinking and going to do, and connected to that is you make everything that happens part of their master plan.

They're both shortcuts to intelligence, but also very easy to make unbelievable. Especially when there was clearly no plan on the writer's part, so the idea the genius character could predict so many different things could happen is impossible.

A good writer can fudge a clever idea. A bad writer treats genius like magic that is like a skeleton key for the problems you want it to solve.
 
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Czargon the Red

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yeah you're thinking of before the New 52, Nygma got his OCD cured so he didn't feel the compulsive need to prove his intelligence and all that, but still really liked puzzles and wanted to solve them, so he became a private investigator. If I recall he wasn't even an anti-hero, just a straight up PI and worked both for the Gotham City Sirens and Batman on different occasions.

it was a really cool direction for the character. Hell he even saved Nightwings life at one point after Nightwing was shot in the gut by Vigilante.

Riddler is harder to write I imagine because he has the problem all smart characters have, where he has to be written by a smart person to make sense. I remember there was a Flash story that was Riddler vs Flash and it was written by someone who clearly just "well if I was going to kill the Flash, I'd do this" and it was stupid. Was literally just Riddler sells a bunch of lil robots to the citys police, then takes control of the robots and makes them target individual civilians. Barry can't be every where at once, so he has to surrender, then he tricks Riddler to recalling all the robots to one location so Barry can destroy them all.

it was very stupid.
the problem is that Riddler is such an iconic Batman rogue that putting him in another book would require a hell of a lot of work outside of the Bat-family, and it'd have to be with a Hero that isn't fucking ridiculously overpowered.

In essence, I think Riddler could be a fun villain for like, The Terrifics or something. God, the new 52 really removed all the older non-bat family detective types and non-OP heroes. He'd be great for a teen hero like Jaime Reyes if they want to bring that book back. Hell, maybe even Hawkman.
It's possible to not be a genius and write a genius, but it's still very tough and only gets tougher the dumber and less talented you are. There's two standard tricks: you give them extraordinary abilities to read people so they can somehow know what people are thinking and going to do, and connected to that is you make everything that happens part of their master plan.

They're both shortcuts to intelligence, but also very easy to make unbelievable. Especially when there was clearly no plan on the writer's part, so the idea the genius character could predict so many different things could happen is impossible.

A good writer can fudge a clever idea. A bad writer treats genius like magic that is like a skeleton key for the problems you want it to solve.
Riddler would be fun if they made him the foil to like, Mr. Terrific or something. He just needs a non Bat-family hero to match wits with. Mr. Terrific would be a fine candidate, Hawkman as well. The problem is that DC's in an event splurge right now so until this whole Rebirth/Dark Knights Metal stream is finally over, we're probably gonna not see much of the ones that aren't integral to this shift.

But uh, how about that Metal Men run right now? I enjoy how they're tying it to the dark multiverse.
 

Czargon the Red

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i wonder what people's thoughts on the various Cyborg solo books this past decade. I personally think they've all been decentish but the lore of Cyborg himself is so tied to the Titans that it felt halfway soul less.
 
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Cyber Bowling

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i wonder what people's thoughts on the various Cyborg solo books this past decade. I personally think they've all been decentish but the lore of Cyborg himself is so tied to the Titans that it felt halfway soul less.
Cyborg is one of those characters that really can't carry his own story. It also feels like a lot of his solo stuff always repeats the same general tech related plot, which sure, he's a Cyborg, it makes sense, but you gotta mix things up every now and then. I think that's why he works so well in the Titans, there was a lot more variance, even if he wasn't always at the center of attention.

The JL version of him is even more wasted, and he's basically a super uber driver for them. It doesn't feel like any writer wants him to be there, but he's stuck because nobody wants to be the one that removes the black dude from the team, especially someone who is now an original member.
 
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Czargon the Red

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Cyborg is one of those characters that really can't carry his own story. It also feels like a lot of his solo stuff always repeats the same general tech related plot, which sure, he's a Cyborg, it makes sense, but you gotta mix things up every now and then. I think that's why he works so well in the Titans, there was a lot more variance, even if he wasn't always at the center of attention.

The JL version of him is even more wasted, and he's basically a super uber driver for them. It doesn't feel like any writer wants him to be there, but he's stuck because nobody wants to be the one that removes the black dude from the team, especially someone who is now an original member.
Cyborg almost works in tech-related stuff but DC's big tech shit is almost always alien. Either it's related to Brainiac or the New Gods. Not bad and you could get something out of it, maybe.

What doesn't really work is the fact that, funny enough, DC already has a few characters that do the classic "whoa is me, am I machine or man?!!?!?!??!" trope far better. Like the Doom Patrol's Robotman. Hell, if they return with the JSA in full gear, that opens up the golden age Robotman and Commander Steel, '40s cyborgs. (Cool Idea as we haven't really seen them since All-Star Squadron ended tbh.) Aside from them, there's also the bat-adjacent character Sasha Bourdeaux who happens to be a cyborg herself and is a big spy character pre-New 52 era. (Leviathan story arc potential?)

Now, I think what a Cyborg ongoing needs isn't the same story type repeated, but for DC to fucking fix their continuity. Add Beast Boy as a main cast member. When all this bullshit settles down and everyone gets back to a pseudo-normal state, maybe have the titans get uber-excited over how he became one of the big guns of the DC universe. IDK, it's possible but a lot of the shit really comes from his supporting cast being shit and over relying on the Titans lore.

I think a ton of characters just suffered from needing to be reintegrated into the DCU. Red Tornado, Plastic Man, god knows who else. They brought back Elongated Man in some secret six revival but that didn't really connect anywhere else?

Justice League Odyssey is just a way to remove Cyborg from Earth tbh. It's worthwhile but I feel like they really need to let Darkseid fucking relax. Like, DC has Lady Styx, Synnar, Kanjar Ro, Atrocitus, Imperiex, Mongul, and god knows how many other cosmic villains to potentially have fun with but the new 52 really went nuts with Darkseid to the point that it wasn't really that fun anymore.

Like, is it possible to have Darkseid fatigue? He's an awesome villain but I don't think we're topping Final Crisis or The Darkseid War just yet. He needs to be given time to come back, properly. I mean fucks sake, they've given Sinestro his rest so he can pop up after this event slog.

Hell man fuck everything, I wanna see Lady Styx or Synnar be headlining cosmic villains again. The former was created to be a "Darkseid alternative" for 52 and the latter was just a sort of Jim Starlin thing that DC did.

But seriously, when DC finishes this epic scale reboot and things get kickin', their densely packed 80+ years of lore and continuity would make for a playground for any competent writer. I find that it is a damn shame that they seem to have forgotten about Ma'alefaak.
 

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Cyborg is one of those characters that really can't carry his own story. It also feels like a lot of his solo stuff always repeats the same general tech related plot, which sure, he's a Cyborg, it makes sense, but you gotta mix things up every now and then. I think that's why he works so well in the Titans, there was a lot more variance, even if he wasn't always at the center of attention.

The JL version of him is even more wasted, and he's basically a super uber driver for them. It doesn't feel like any writer wants him to be there, but he's stuck because nobody wants to be the one that removes the black dude from the team, especially someone who is now an original member.
Personally, I never understood why they needed Cyborg to be the token black character for Justice League. And, let's be frank, that's all he's been to DC since New 52. I know they were never going to make Jon Stewart THE Green Lantern as long as the ultimate Hal Jordan fanboy Geoff Johns had any influence but there had to be a better pick than removing Cyborg from a dynamic he works well in. No one ever has any ideas for him and he doesn't have chemistry with any other member of the League. Maybe it could have worked better had some of his fellow Titans been there, like Wally still being The Flash or Dick still working as Batman.
 

Czargon the Red

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Personally, I never understood why they needed Cyborg to be the token black character for Justice League. And, let's be frank, that's all he's been to DC since New 52. I know they were never going to make Jon Stewart THE Green Lantern as long as the ultimate Hal Jordan fanboy Geoff Johns had any influence but there had to be a better pick than removing Cyborg from a dynamic he works well in. No one ever has any ideas for him and he doesn't have chemistry with any other member of the League. Maybe it could have worked better had some of his fellow Titans been there, like Wally still being The Flash or Dick still working as Batman.
Cyborg got swept by the new 52 flashpoint reboot, but yeah. He works better if you throw Wally and Dick on the team for a dynamic.

Black Lightning's being built up by the current Outsiders to be a potential paragon. This could be fun.
 

Cyber Bowling

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Personally, I never understood why they needed Cyborg to be the token black character for Justice League. And, let's be frank, that's all he's been to DC since New 52. I know they were never going to make Jon Stewart THE Green Lantern as long as the ultimate Hal Jordan fanboy Geoff Johns had any influence but there had to be a better pick than removing Cyborg from a dynamic he works well in. No one ever has any ideas for him and he doesn't have chemistry with any other member of the League. Maybe it could have worked better had some of his fellow Titans been there, like Wally still being The Flash or Dick still working as Batman.
I've always been curious about that myself. My first thought when he was starting to gain a lot of use was someone was a fan of his, but it seems unlikely because, like you said, he hasn't actually done anything. You'd think if there was some fan forcing him into the mix, they'd Mary Sue him up.

I think part of the issue does circle back to the Titans, namely the issue to retcon Cyborg as never being part of them to get him on the JL, since that effectively removed all of his character. And unlike the other members, he didn't have a solo series, so the JL title was the only chance for him to develop, which they clearly weren't interested in.

If I had to guess, the reasoning was probably around him being one of the better known black characters (that wasn't Jon Stewart) due to the Teen Titans cartoons.
 
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