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10 comics to avoid in DC’s massive reboot

Just a few days ago, we gave you a list of the 10 comics you should download (or pick up at your local comic shop) from DC’s relaunch of their entire superhero line.

Of course, choosing ten titles from the 52 new series kicking off this month meant leaving a few comics off the list that could also be worth checking out (i.e., Batgirl #1 and Swamp Thing #1). So, in the interest of helping you narrow down which comics you should — and in this case, shouldn’t — be adding to your download queue right away, we’ve compiled a list of the 10 comics you might want to avoid this month from DC’s “New 52” lineup.

Oh, and keep in mind we’re not saying they’re definitely going to be bad, but rather that you might want to wait and hear what people are saying about these comics before you drop your hard-earned money on them.

Green Arrow #1 by J.T. Krul & Dan Jurgens

Available: September 7

Writer J.T. Krul gained a lot of attention recently for writing one of the most critically panned comics of recent years, Justice League: The Rise of Arsenal, in which Green Arrow’s bow-wielding former sidekick loses his arm, becomes addicted to heroin, and hallucinates that a dead cat in an alley is his recently deceased daughter. On top of all that, the new series’ title character appears to have been redesigned to look more like his counterpart on the recently concluded Smallville television series, which usually isn’t a good sign that the publisher has the comic’s best interests in mind.

Mr. Terrific #1 Eric Wallace & Robert Robinson

Available: September 14

Okay, we have to confess that we’re simply not big fans of Mister Terrific as a character — so that plays a big role in our early assessment of this book. Despite the character’s long history, Mr. Terrific has generally been positioned as something of a lighter, more tech-savvy version of Batman in the modern age, and his most memorable adventures have occurred as part of a team (The Justice Society of America) rather than solo. Writer Eric Wallace hasn’t quite made a name for himself in the comics world yet, so there’s a lot of extra uncertainty surrounding this title, too. While there’s certainly the chance that this could be the book that puts Wallace — and Mister Terrific — in the spotlight, waiting for the first round of reviews could be your best course of action.

Supergirl #1 by Michael Green, Mike Johnson & Mahmud Asrar
 
Available: September 21

Supergirl continues to be one of the most frequently rebooted, redesigned, canceled, and reinvented characters in the entire DC universe, so it’s hard to recommend that anyone set themselves up for future frustrations with a new Supergirl series. The series is co-written by Michael Green, who has a few comics credits to his name so far and also served as a producer and co-writer on the Smallville television series and the recent Green Lantern movie — none of which helps the case for this book. As always, it could surprise us all and be really, really good, but given the track record of both the character and the book’s creative team, we’d advise a wait-and-see approach.

Catwoman #1 by Judd Winick & Guillem March

Available: September 21

It’s no secret that comics featuring female leads have a nasty habit of falling into the realm of pure T&A cheesecake, with top-heavy women running around in ridiculous outfits and seemingly unable to utter a line of dialogue that isn’t dripping with euphemisms (or strike any pose that isn’t loaded with spine-defying flirtation). Sadly, this one looks like it could be more of the same, with the synopsis promising that its title character “can’t help herself, and the truth is – she doesn’t want to … she’s good at being bad, and very bad at being good.” While writer Judd Winick has written some great stories in the past, this series looks like it could be more fan service than compelling storytelling. Readers wanting a good, female-fronted series might be better off with Batgirl #1 or Wonder Woman #1 if there’s a choice to be made.

Superman #1 by George Perez & Jesus Merino

Available: September 28

Superman writer George Perez is one of the comic book industry’s veteran creators, but his most notable projects cast him as an artist, not a writer. Given the high profile of DC’s other big Superman-related relaunch, Action Comics, and its superstar writer, Grant Morrison, it’s likely that the most important events transpiring in the Man of Steel’s world won’t be happening in this book. Superman completists will certainly want to pick it up to know anything and everything happening in the character’s universe, but anyone new to comics or having only a passing interest in the Man of Steel will do perfectly fine sticking with Action Comics as their sole dose of regular Superman adventures.

The Flash by Francis Manapul & Brian Buccallato

Available: September 28

Francis Manapul is one of the industry’s most talented artists, but his writing remains an untested commodity in the DC universe. That means that we can be assured The Flash will look amazing in his new, rebooted adventures, but the story could be a gamble. It’s difficult to believe DC would entrust one of its top-tier characters like The Flash to anyone who couldn’t handle the character, but given the absence of much to go on with the artist-turned-writer, you’ll want to take things a little slower when it comes to DC’s scarlet speedster

Blackhawks #1 by Mike Costa & Ken Lashley

Available: September 28

It remains to be seen whether the Blackhawk Squadron, a team of military-themed characters created in the 1940s that flew around in fighter planes fighting World War II bad guys, can actually achieve some sort of relevance in the modern era. Subsequent reinventions of the characters met with mixed results, and they’ve since been relegated to occasional cameos in crossovers and similar universe-spanning events. While DC has found a good writer to handle them in Mike Costa — who also scripts IDW Publishing’s G.I. Joe series — the team has always had trouble catching on with modern readers.

Batman: The Dark Knight #1 by David Finch & Jay Fabok

Available: September 28

Similar to the situation with the new Superman series, there are multiple Batman titles included in DC’s big relaunch, and Batman: The Dark Knight looks like it could be the weakest of the bunch. Writer/artist David Finch is better known for his illustration skills than his scripting, and this actually looks to be less of a reboot and more of a continuation of his poorly reviewed and often delayed Batman: The Dark Knight series that kicked off late last year. While the book will certainly look, it’s hard to recommend a series that might not even be a reboot at all, and could suffer many of the same problems of its previous iteration.

Justice League Dark #1 by Peter Milligan & Mikel Janin

Available: September 28

Independently, each of the characters featured in Justice League Dark are attractive ingredients for a series. Put them together, and we’re suddenly not so sure. This new series promises to team up some of the DC universe’s heavy hitters from the magic world, including Deadman, John “Hellblazer” Constantine, Shade the Changing Man, Madame Xanadu, and Zatanna, uniting for a series of adventures that the Justice League proper just can’t handle. Even though the presence of celebrated writer Peter Milligan makes us feel a little better about this one, there’s a sense that the publisher might be cramming too many super-powered, magical cooks into the kitchen — and the notion that these loner, fringe-universe characters would ever unite under the “Justice League” banner has prompted a snicker or two from longtime fans. In the end, this is one of those series that will either be a total mess or turn out to be so crazy it actually works.

I, Vampire #1 by Josh Fialkov & Andrea Sorrentino

Available: September 28

I, Vampire writer Joshua Hale Fialkov has actually written some top-notch stories in the creator-owned comics world, including Tumor and Elk’s Run. However, there’s a lot of uncertainty regarding his reinvention of the popular I, Vampire series created in the early 1980s. Given the current popularity of “sexy vampire” stories in mainstream media, anything featuring a pair of attractive bloodsuckers on its cover should be viewed with the appropriate level of caution. While we’re fairly certain this won’t be DC’s version of The Twilight Saga unfolding among its superheroes and villains, it’s not a bad idea to wait until morning the day after this one hits shelves and then decide whether to invite it into your home.