Monday, May 12, 2008

Marvel & DC Fans: Out-Of-Continuity Titles OK?

How important is it to you that your Batman or Spider-man comic be in-continuity? Would you collect a monthly "stand alone" Batman or Spider-man series that was not in continuity?

What spurred this question on is an interview with new Brave and Bold writer J. Michael Straczynski on Newsarama. Brave and Bold has become a cause celebre as of late, with some bloggers asking why more people aren't picking up the title. I haven't been following Brave and Bold myself, but apparently -- at least according to the interview with Straczynski, the stories are either not in continuity or the continuity is not observed closely.

If you are a superhero comics fan, how important is continuity to you? If Brave and Bold features cool but not in-continuity stories, are you ok with that? Or do feel as if the stories "don't mean as much?"

Stand-alone stories or arcs relatively untouched by the continuity was the motivation behind the DC "Classified" books, which started with JLA. Originally, the stories in JLA Classified were supposed to be in the monthly series. The idea was that instead of running stories encumbered by the the continuity of the JLA-ers monthly solo books, several high-profile teams could create stand-alone arcs. These arcs could be worked on all at the same time, without worrying about continuity (or slow artists), and "banked" for future issues and arcs.

But, I think somewhere along the line DC got cold feet on the concept, and decided to put the stories in their own title. Thus leaving the monthly JLA title to be the continuity-heavy title it currently is.

But would you even be interested in JLA stories that didn't reflect or change the status quo? Or is simply having a good story more important?

Note: I realize that both Brave and Bold & JLA Classified are supposed to take place in a "fuzzy" continuity area -- with the stories in Classified supposedly taking place in the JLA's past. But my question remains. If you see a JLA story not reflecting the current status quo, but referencing an undefined past, are you okay with that? Case in point: The New Frontier. Not exactly "canon." But enjoyable, right?


  1. I am all for tossing continuity out the window. It's insane how people are obsessed about this.

    NEW FRONTIER has become my favorite comic of all time. It shows what happens when a major publishing company allows an artist to run around in their universe and use the characters to their maximum emotional, political and pop culture potential.

    What's the point of trying to work in all of these past stories into one, long piece of weaving canon? I mean, Batman's been around for what-- 69, 70 years? Even with the Silver Age reboot, it'd be something like 40 something years. It's impossible for all of his stories to be "in his continuity" anyway. Batman would be like 70 years old by now. It's silly.

    As for the non-continuity titles like ALL STAR SUPERMAN, ALL STAR BATMAN and B&B, I whole heartily support the concepts behind them. Unfortunately for me, they each leave me cold for a different reason.

    SUPERMAN has gorgeous art and the stories are intriguing, but not emotionally involving. They seem flat, even though they deal with deep issues. It's almost like it's trying too hard to be weird and different. It's muted, which is a nice sentiment in this hyper-kenetic era, but it's not fully clicking with me.

    AS BATMAN just makes a mockery of Batman. In my opinion, the writing is sloppy and I don't like the uber-chauvinistic male attitude that Miller infuses in his writing. I'm not surprised. Once HARD BOILED rolled around, the guy just threw tight writing out the window. Personally, I think he's written crap for years. I put him in the Lucas/Spielberg category now: a childhood hero who has totally lost his way.

    As for B&B, I wanted so badly to like this comic. But in the end, it's just cheesy fluff that feels antiquated-- a lost comic from 1982. I'm not really in to stories that take place on other planets about gambling worlds and books that tell the future or whatever.

    I was hoping for some gritty, earthbound adventures, allowing for teams ups with Bats and Green Arrow, GA and Canary or GA/GL. I'd love to see Wonder Woman and Vixen together. Or WW and Canary on some Earth bound adventure dealing with Earth bound issues.

    Hell, I'd love to see an ALL STAR WONDER WOMAN. Maybe if DC didn't have to worry about continuity, a writer would have the freedom to use that character to her maximum ability. Lord knows they can't figure out to do with her in this current continuity (she's now off on another planet fighting alongside some aliens in an intergalactic war or something? Come on!)

    I hope DC realizes that they have the ability to do some really cool stuff in the non-continuity format. Things like KINGDOM COME (which, I guess now is part of some weird continuity, which is silly), DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, WATCHMEN and the aforementioned DC:NF are industry high watermarks.

  2. Anonymous1:22 PM

    I think heavy continuity links between titles encourages a sense of completism when buying 22-page singles. However, when buying trade paperback collections, heavy continuity links are just a headache when one only wants to read and enjoy a single graphic novel.

    I personally am not interested in buying into the latest event and following the developments of a fictitious universe as a whole. I just want to pick up one series and enjoy that one series. The idea of having had to read "Civil War", "World War Hulk", "Iron Man", "Captain America", "New Avengers", "Mighty Avengers" and "Secret Invasion" all together when I only want to read "New Avengers" and "Captain America" -- well, it hasn't endeared itself to me.

    I also think that these crossovers don't exactly translate well to the bookstore market, although that isn't really Marvel or DC's priority these days. As a reader, I'd prefer to see every series be handled like "Justice" or "New Frontier". I think Marvel is doing a good job of keeping each event reasonably contained so that one only has to buy their favourite titles and the crossover mini-series, but it still feels intrusive and unwelcome.

  3. For a team-up book like B&B, I think this makes perfect sense. Since the compelling dynamic at its peak was a good standalone character-driven story based on an odd pairing, rigid shared universe continuity should not be much of an issue.

    It's not so much that these books intentionally run counter to continuity, but rather that they just kind of avoid it altogether. That said, it only works if each issue/arc is self-contained. The more issues the crossovers/story arcs run, the harder it becomes for readers to "set aside continuity" and just enjoy the team-ups on their own merits.

    The "old" team-up books got this right back in the day - B&B, DC Comics Presents, Marvel T-U, Marvel 2-in-1. Hope JMS & DC take that approach, because I think the market is ready for that kind of offering again.

  4. I whole heartily support the non-continuity concepts. It's absurd to try to work in 70 years of history into some "official canon." The characters are only supposed to be 35-40 years old, right? Some are even younger. They'd each have to be something like 80 to fit in all of these stories-- if not 150! It's all so silly.

    DC: NEW FRONTIER has become my favorite comic of all time. It shows what can happen when a major publisher allows an artist to run around in their universe and use their characters to their maximum emotional, political and social power.

    As for the other non-continuity titles out there, I support them in concept. But in execution, each one is problematic for me.

    ALL-STAR BATMAN is sloppy and makes a mockery of Batman. I just think Frank Miller has become a hack, who is in love with everything he writes (dangerous for a writer). I now put him in the Lucas/Spielberg category: childhood heroes who have lost their way.

    ALL-STAR SUPERMAN has proven to be a gorgeous looking book, but the stories are cold and not emotionally involving, despite being about life or death issues. I really want to love this book, but it's just not been something I've been able to read with regularity.

    As for B&B, I've been insanely disappointed by this book. First off, it reads like a lost comic from 1982. It's antiquated, silly and Hostess light. Sugary and devoid of nutrients. It'd be fine if I were 12. And maybe that's the point. But as a 35 year old man, it doesn't do anything for me.

    Also, I really couldn't give a crap about stories taking place on gambling planets with aliens trying to get their hands on some book that can tell the future.

    I had hoped that B&B was going to deal with gritty, Earth bound issues, teaming up cool sets of heroes in intriguing, emotionally compelling stories. I wanted to see Bats and GA together again, or GA and Canary hitting slum lords and drug dealers. Or Wonder Woman and Vixen taking on slave trafficking or something.

    And speaking of Wonder Woman, I think an ALL-STAR WONDER WOMAN would be a great thing. Maybe if DC weren't married to continuity, a writer could do something interesting with her. Lord knows they can't figure out what to do with her in her current title (fighting with aliens on another planet? What is this-- 1955?).

    I hope DC comes to realize the power they have in telling stories outside of continuity. Comics like KINGDOM COME (which, I guess now is part of continuity, which is silly), DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, WATCHMEN and the aforementioned DC:NF are industry high watermarks. Allowing artists true creative freedom will generate more of these great titles.

  5. I deeply regret the double post. My server crashed while it was posting and it looked like it hadn't gone through. Sorry.

  6. I think there's an important distinction to be made between stories that are out-of-continuity and those that don't contradict continuity. Brave and the Bold seems to fall in the latter category, at least as it's currently written.

    There's nothing in the overall continuity to say that the Bruce Wayne Batman didn't team up with the Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle at the same time the Hal Jordan Green Lantern teamed up with the Kara Zor-el Supergirl on the same mission. But if we saw combinations of a John Paul Valley Batman with a Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle, I'd say that contradicts continuity.

    If it changes to a truly out-of-continuity book, then I think it should be clearly labeled as such, otherwise all the message board threads debating the "what-fits-wheres" will slow the internet to a crawl.

    Personally, I don't mind either category, just as long as it doesn't try to be both.

  7. I don't think it's an either/or question. It's a question of the publisher committing to whether a title "counts" or not, and whether the creative team can deliver the book on time. After all, Astonishing X-Men may as well not count, it's so far behind the other X-books.

  8. I think separate books for both directions is the way to go. You got the continuity for the long-time fans who enjoy that, then the non-continuity for the new readers and people who want simple, light reads. It's the best of both worlds, and hell, they do mulitple titles anyways so may as well give that a true purpose.

    As for B&B, I loved ever issue so far. Little weary of JMS taking over, but we'll see.

  9. Continuity is helpful-- it is what lets us know Batman mourns a fallen Robin, that Iron Man & Captain America were team-mates & friends. It can also be a giant cluster fuck. I like my continuity FUZZY. With a capital FUZ.

  10. continuity is great, but so is out of continuity tales. well, they are only great if the story is great, and really that is seemingly hard to do these days, sadly.

    i was really excited about the brave and the bold, got the 1st trade and was ready to cry. it wa awful. the perez art seemed dated beyond belief and waid was clicking on maybe 1/10 of his cylinders. it just seemed very disjointed.

    so i washed my hands of it. if it had been heavily tied in more with continuity i fear it could have been worse though.

  11. I have a lot of mixed feelings about the whole continuity issue. As mordicai says, it helps you know the characters, their personalities, their history, and all that. But on the other hand, continuity for a character that has been around as long as Batman or Superman is just too much. With the number of writers, artists, and editors who have created their own interpretations of the characters over the years it gives me headaches every time I think about it.

    So in the end, I like certain aspects of having continuity in the main titles of the characters while I can often appreciate an out-of-continuity external story now and then.

  12. i usually hate all the continuity stuff. i'd love some non-continuity books of almost every character at Marvel and DC, and if they did that, i'd be broke. i want to read about characters like the Hulk or Batman that aren't bogged down with all this history i don't know about or whatever, but nobody does that stuff. i also sort of tie the continuity gripes into the shared universe concept, but that's also a whole other topic, heh. i want to read non-continuity books like All-Star Superman, where it's all Superman all the time and no crossover characters.

    i also think if there were more non-continuity stories, or just if Marvel and DC were more open to them, then we could see various creators taking a stab at Character X and doing their own thing with it. like Paul Pope's Batman 100 or something; i could go into Marvel and pitch a standalone, my-own-version Spider-Man or X-Men, and it would be this self-contained thing without any history constraits and completely suitable for new readers. think of how many great, fresh tales people could do about these characters.

    and new readers is also a big thing, too. i feel like a new reader a lot of times, i think "hm, maybe i'll get into Hulk" but then i check it out and it's completely confusing and there are these other characters appearing in the book and i don't know who they are, etc. etc.. then at the end of the day i'm "well... i like Hulk a lot but there aren't any stories about him i'm able to penetrate." but it's not like the continuity books would have to be tossed out, there could be both those and non-continuity. they'd never have to impede on one another, of course. different books for different readers.

  13. I like continuity. But I am more of the mind that new stories shouldn't be slavishly devoted to what came before, but they shouldn't contradict it either.

    Take for instance, if someone who was killed of in a previous issue and returns later with no explanation, that is bad. If you pick up an issue of Superman and he is no longer married and no explanation given, that is bad.

    There is a way to write stories not beholden to continuity yet still be in continuity.

  14. I like continuity in small bites. Five years of continuity? Cool. Ten years? Well, if you keep the trades in print, fine. Beyond that? Forget it.

    In my ideal world, Marvel/DC would do a hard reboot every ten years... blow everything out, keep the highlights, and move on.

  15. This debate strikes me as similar to the difference of opinion between those who think BSG has been "spinning its wheels" or "telling compelling, character-driven stories".

    I've been enjoying the slow pace this season, just as I prefer out-of-continuity books. I suspect those who just want to get to the resolution of the mysteries are the same sort who care about continuity far more than I. They take more pleasure out of the construction of the universe and the puzzles within it than the character growth.

    It's a different, though valid world-view.

  16. If there is a title that people will likely buy, but which doesn't fit into current continuity because it features Wonder Girl before she got her boob-job and IQ reduced, then just slap an 'Elseworlds' tag on there and publish that sucker. End of problem.

  17. Continuity is the bugbear of serial publication.

    The hell with all of it.

    Let's just merge the lot, make DC, Marvel, the indies, and all times and places open game: Superman and Mr. Fantastic fight Xena the Warrior Princess and Rick Grimes in the medieval canals of Mars... with variant covers by Alex Ross, Arthur Suydam, and Steve Ditko.

    I would buy that in floppy, hardcover, AND trade paperback format.

  18. Anonymous7:00 PM

    "Doctor Who", for much of its run, approached the idea of continuity as what the average viewer could be expected to remember, or what the average viewer could have explained to them in three sentences or less.

    Alternatively, continuity was defined as whatever the writer could remember while working on the script.

  19. Anonymous7:18 PM

    Continuity doesn't matter that much to me. It's nice for certain titles to observe it, but not necessary for all of them. I liked Kingdom Come, but I don't consider that part of continuity. Same for the Justice series.

    When I was younger--before you guys were born--I read the early Brave and Bold. Batman would team up with the Spectre or Wildcat, who lived on Earth-2. It didn't bother me that those couldn't happen in the main DC Universe.

    I think DC has made a major mistake in trying to copy Marvel with this big events like Countdown. They think they are doing it the Marvel way, but by ramming this down everyone's throat, they are not. I'd prefer for DC to just forget about it, let the creators of these books have a year to themselves, and improve the storylines without worrying about the DC Universe continuity.

  20. As long as the characters are respected, continuity doesn't really matter.

    I think it was Keith Giffen who said it's not about continuity so much as it's about consistency.

    When you get down to it, I think it's all about the writer. I think it's great what Morrison is doing with his out-of-continuity Superman, and the title truly is All-Star.

    Similarly, I think Johns is having a fantastic run with Superman in Action Comics, and really getting to some iconic super-stories.

    Conversely, Miller's reinterpretation of Batman is, well, interesting to say the least, but it's hard to determine his intentions, and I think in this regard, we're allowed to call continuity on him. Making Robin eat rats? Yeah, that's not something an iconic Batman would do.

    To look at a Marvel example, there's One More Day. I don't think it respected Peter as a character, because Peter would have accepted that it was his fault that May got shot, and NOT make a deal with Marvel's devil. That was a plot point developed not for the story, but for the sake of continuing the title, and I think it didn't respect Peter Parker as a character so much as a franchise. In this case, I'd totally call a continuity foul but, that's up for debate I suppose.

    So yeah. For me, it comes down to the writing.

    Also, I hope Straczynski does a GA/BC team-up, because, honestly, Winick is not doing them any justice. They could be so much more than they are in their title.

  21. Yeah, I'm in favor of out-of-continuity stories. In fact, I'm like Ted up there- they can chuck continuity as far as I'm concerned. All I really expect is internal consistency from the story in question.

    One reason I rarely buy monthlies from the big two is that the stories are practically ruined by adherence to continuity. Also that I know none of the trademark characters are in any kind of jeopardy, which kinda takes all the suspense out of an action story. No jeopardy, no danger, no interest.

    I suggested on my blog they should abandon the monthly and just do graphic novels with only internal continuity. Get the writers to tell independent stories with solid beginnings and endings. Then someone called me a moron so I amended that plan to include leaving the monthly books alone for people who like long form serialization and love remembering who met who and when Wolverine got his adamantium and all that stuff I could care less about unless it's a vital story point.

    One thing about continuity is it's subject to retroactive changes, so what you believe happened today might never have happened at all. One month Superman had all these adventures as Superboy when he was a teen, and the next month there's no such thing, and a few years later... there's two Superboys. Or three dozen.

    Look at Wolverine. Used to be a mysterious cool guy with no past, then he had about 12 pasts, none of which was as remotely cool as having no past. Supergirl? Powergirl? Continuity and reboots have really done numbers on them.

    If someone loves keeping that stuff straight, fine. But for me, it has nothing to do with the story itself and whether or not it works as successful fiction. So I'm totally, 100% in favor of just dropping that aspect and getting some really awesome self-contained stories.

  22. At the risk of being a nitpick, I would posit that Brave & the Bold is a bad example because the first year of the book's stories lead directly into Final Crisis.

    Of course, they didn't tell people that up front. Which is why no one bought it.

  23. thinking a little more about this idea, i think the general fan hesitates to buy out of continuity titles/stories due to the price of comics today.

    as in: "why should i spend $3+ dollars on a book that will not matter."

    not saying i agree with this notion, i just want good stories, preferably that challenge and expand the medium. but i can understand where others feel that for 3 bucks, they better get something important.

    and for this i blame the comic companies for pushing more connective tissue throughout their lines in the desire to attach themselves to every ounce of disposable income rather than telling the best possible stories out there.

  24. Personally, I don't care anymore. If anything, I just wish DC would restart everything from Year One.

  25. B&B is 100% in continuity, given that characters have referenced events in it in other books (like Batman meeting yet another Legion in B&B and mentioning it in a superman book), and the end of the current arc references Final Crisis.

  26. Looks like the problem with Brave and the Bold is that there's no central characters or team. It's appealing to the smallest of fan bases which are people who get off on the shared universe. In fact I got the impression B&B was steeped in continuity.

    I think 60 year continuities breed stories about continuity.

    Increasingly my favorite super hero stories are the ones that stand on their own.

    Golden Age doesn't have to flow into New Frontier, into JLA Year One, into Idenity Crisis, into Dark Knight Returns and wrap up neatly in Kingdom Come before I can enjoy anyone of them on their own.

  27. Anonymous10:24 AM

    I'm getting the feeling some of the objections in these posts are to multipart continued stories, rather than continuity per se.

    I like continuity. The idea that characters have a history and a background that's developed over time makes them more interesting. And no, it can't be kept 100 percent consistent, but that was true when I started reading comics in the sixties. No problem.

    I liked Brave and Bold a lot--it's the first decent idea for handling the Challengers in years--and I don't think the stories were out of continuity--as Cody said, the fact it doesn't make a big thing out of continuity (unless, johnny zito, having characters appear together is too much continuity for your taste) doesn't mean it violates continuity. Probably most of the stories I've read in comics in my life fall into that category.

    Maybe part of the problem is all the big events, reboots and Huge Sweeping Changes that are so popular. Since B&B doesn't tie into them (despite the reference to Final Crisis) it feels discontinuous when it isn't.

  28. For awhile my favorite stories were elseworlds and ultimate titles (and to an extent, Marvel Knights) largely because they didn't have to follow continuity. They were simple, sometimes one and done stories that were internally enjoyable.

    Another great example is the JLA Animated Series, while it did have internal continuity, it wasn't necessary to know it to enjoy various stories.

    Sure, stories with a long history do have their place (see the current Captain America, which ties into a lot of old CA stories, or even Secret Invasion), and there is an enjoyment factor there, but I really do think that we spend way too much time and energy on, what is an inevitably improbable task - especially when characters don't age much.

    As an film editor, the way I make my money, I've learned that you edit on three things - performance, story, and continuity - continuity being last. Meaning, it's okay of someone's soda isn't the same from one frame to the other, if people are captivated by the actor's performance, they shouldn't notice the glass isn't half full. This is especially useful with a director that uses improvisation. If the story is still enjoyable and internally consistent, people shouldn't notice the pitfalls of what has or hasn't been done before.

    Back to the Elseworlds stuff - if there's a strength DC has it's the iconic strength of their characters. They literally show that you could put Superman, Wonder Woman, or Batman anywhere, anywhen and the reader will be able to immediately understand who they are. And yet, DC, in my opinion, is the one company most tied to their continuity, which makes it largely impossible for a Marvel newcomer like me to follow.

  29. I don't care as long as the stories are awesome :D

  30. My favourite review that I did most recently (last 6 months) was the new out of continuity Invincible Iron Man last week.

    No Skrulls, but boy was it great to read a book I didn't need 30 years of continuity to enjoy (and I'm over 30).

  31. Anonymous9:41 PM

    nadir writes:

    "(I was) thinking a little more about this idea, (and) I think the general fan hesitates to buy out of continuity titles/stories due to the price of comics today.

    as in: "why should I spend $3+ dollars on a book that will not matter?"

    You could also take the view that nothing 'counts'. It doesn't matter what the publisher designates as important, because at any given whim, what's 'important' can be trashed as an editor or creator comes up with something they think is better.

    You're right about the price points, but that's just in general. Is any comic book at 22 pages of incomplete story worth $3? Answer - not to the casual person. Personally, if you're going to write for the trade, then just write the damned trade and publish it as the trade and be done with it, and save the monthly for short stories.


    Kidflash wrote:

    "I think DC has made a major mistake in trying to copy Marvel with this big events like Countdown. They think they are doing it the Marvel way, but by ramming this down everyone's throat, they are not."

    Sure they are. Both companies are doing nothing but shoveling god awful crossover event storylines down your throats. It's been that way for the past twenty years, when you think about it. It's just people didn't complain so much about it when books were .75 to $1 cover price.


    Johnny Zito says:

    "I think 60 year continuities breed stories about continuity."

    Not at all. The editors and writers are choosing to do it this way. Get people with a different mindset in place, and you will get different types of stories with respect to the past, but moving forward towards the future.


    I would just like well written and illustrated, self-contained books. I don't care if it's 22 pages or 220 pages, and I don't care how often they come out as long as they come out when you've scheduled their release. Just give me a complete story each purchase, or leave me alone. I have better things to do with my life than revolve it around anyone else's publication schedule.

    Something to think about.

  32. I don't mind out-of-continuity books at all, so long as they don't pretend to be in-continuity. If you want to do a jazzy, fresh reboot of Captain Marvel, and you're Jeff Smith, then sure, 'Monster Society of Evil' me. If you want to do a story about Spider-Man's teenage daughter, go for it. Fun times.

    But don't have a character who died in Avengers show up in X-Men, then tell everyone who complains that they care too much about continuity. No, sorry, that's just sloppy writing and poor research on your part, and blaming your audience is a good way to lose it.

  33. I was a big comic reader in the 1980s, read more selectively in the '90s, and stopped going to the comic shop altogether around 2005 or so. And I think the loss of continuity had a lot to do with my declining interest--I think the feeling that each issue of every comic book was an installment in a single epic tale was what gave these stories so much power for me.

    Imagine that The Lord of the Rings, instead of being a series of novels, is a bunch of comic books--and they're not in continuity with each other. How much do you really care whether Frodo gets the ring into Mount Doom or not? He could throw it in this month, and then next year he could have to throw it in again--who cares, if you tell a good story again? But if everything is true, then nothing is true.

    It's true that it's hard and maybe impossible to keep up a continuity over the better part of a century--maybe nobody wants to read about Bruce Wayne or Peter Parker getting old, and if that's the case, the warping of reality around unaging mortals is going to screw up the best storytellers.

    There definitely is a new era in the comic book universes, where the stories are less installments in a single epic and more self-contained takes on a shared archetype. And this can definitely produce some fine stories, particularly cross-media--I loved Iron Man, the last Superman, the previews for The Dark Knight. But it's hard for me to think that something wasn't lost when it was decided that the stories no longer had to fit together, even if such a decision was inevitable.

  34. man, i so don't care about continuity. one of the biggest problems with american comics is how it doesn't END. ever. ever. you're never that worried about the characters because, well, to quote a legion comic, "was i 'dead-dead', or 'superhero-dead'?"

    self contained comics like long halloween, etc? they rock because ANYTHING can happen! and on the other side of the coin, if things you hate happen, it doesn't matter! i totally hate all star batman but so what? in the back of everyone's head we're going "well it doesn't really count!". on the other side, you get the freedom to do amazing reimaginings like all star superman! i'm all for a creative team just focusing on making a GOOD story with the DCU as their playground.

    people don't really care about continuity, except WITHIN set parameters! if bill from page five suddenly forgets a conversation he had on page 88? i get pissed off, my nerd-rage activates! it's sort of like, as long as you keep it making sense WITHIN itself, everyone's happy.

  35. I dislike continuity because all too often it's a cudgel used by fanboys with an axe to grind. They hold their favorite stories and say, "see this? it's continuity, Joe Quesadilla! My favorite character would never act the way you say he does!" while ignoring a dozen other stories, all in continuity, where the character acts just as bad or worse.

    I've recently ordered Brubaker's Captain America omnibus, and the death of Captain America hardcover, but they're the first in-continuity collections I've picked up. Everything else is What If, Elseworlds, or Ultimate.