There have been lots of exciting changes over at DC comics in recent months. New projects, new initiatives, and new directions. While some endeavors have been more successful than others, the effort is appreciated, and, with their latest project kicking off this week, it seemed like a good time to engage my admittedly annoying habit of couching everything in a best-thing-since-that-thing comparison.
Despite its commercial success, the Rebirth initiative might be the fourth-best thing the comic book publisher is doing right now. And I’m not even talking about the death-rattle-days of Vertigo. Gerard Way’s Young Animal is arguably batting a thousand: with his Doom Patrol leading the way, the imprint is four for four, hearkening back to the days when Hellblazer, Sandman, Shade: The Changing Man, and Grant Morrison’s Doom Patrol pushed the boundaries of mainstream comics.
While I still have mixed feelings regarding the monthly efforts surrounding DC’s sacred pantheon of superheroes, the publisher has a knack for putting together projects that allow great creators to showcase their love for great characters, outside of regimented continuity. Kamandi Challenge, for example, is a brilliant idea, and the first time I’ve been excited about pass-the-baton comics storytelling since Spiegelman’s Narrative Corpse. This particular celebration of one of Jack Kirby’s most beloved creations is one of the most entertaining superhero endeavors DC has pulled together since Wednesday Comics.
And now, this week, DC gives us something else to get excited about. A rebirth no less significant, a re-imagining of the WildStorm universe, spearheaded by Warren Ellis.