Thursday, September 25, 2008

Which Blue Beetle Do You Like Best?

Fan-favorite Blue Beetle has certainly gone through many changes over the years -- and several companies to boot! It all made me wonder: who is the most beloved version of the character?

Is it:

Dan Garrett?

Ted Kord?


Jamie Reyes?

And remember, everyone -- some of you might have really passionate opinions as to what *your* favorite incarnation of the azure-hued daredevil is. But let's play nice -- every opinion counts.


  1. "Goodbye to Comics" is what drew me to your blog, and your insightful and powerful discussions of comics, pop culture, and society are what have kept me coming back. I especially found your comment on Krypton, "when those assholes were given a heads-up and decided to sit on their thumbs," especially poignant. It's been that kind of week.

    Don't stop being you, and doing what you do. I like the long posts. I'm sorry there are those of us out there who like to shit on everything that tries to point out injustice or insanity. All part of the truth-telling job, it would seem.

    Remember, with great power, comes great responsibility, or some bullshit like that. Don't stop using your great powers for good. Yes.

    I kinda like the new Blue Beetle. He's keen.

  2. Wow. You're actually going through with it - it's a bit disappointing. But I understand.

    But understand that the vocal minority do not stand for the majority who read you (despite your google ad sales). Well, I can't speak for the majority either, just me.

    And that it's your insights and opinion that I value, and the reason you have a place on my google reader. This is also the reason that when I saw "Which Blue Beetle Do You Like Best?" before the post below, and I was worried that this blog wouldn't be what I remember it being.

    But it is still you.

    Proving a point.

  3. While I love Ted Kord, be it his awesome Ditko-written model or the Bwahaha JLI days, no one can beat the sheer, loveable win of Jaime Reyes.

    And his Mom.

  4. I think that Ted Kord is charming but his only truly heroic moment was his death, wheras Jamie Reyes (& Scarab) have been grandly heroic - especially against the Reach.

    After all though, the mark of a hero is that they will sacrifice themselves for the sake of others. You know, kind of like cutting your own arm off to save others from having to do the same.

  5. I didnt know that the blue beetle
    existed, until Jaime Reyes came along.
    (or maybe Because Im mexican)

  6. Probably Ted Kord, the carpal tunnel syndrome suffering nerd with an unrequited crush and a good sense of humor. Something about that speaks to me (except for the carpal tunnel). Not to say Jaime Reyes hasn't had his moments though. I'm really enjoying his series and like the character. Just doesn't have Ted Kord's history yet.

    Have a good day.
    George Morrow

  7. Ps.- by the way I never read an issue of blue beetle before,

  8. I have no idea why he is a "fan favorite" in the first place. I liked his witty banter with Booster Gold in Justice League but I really have no idea if he has powers or anything. I guess by default the Ted version is my pick.

  9. Hmm.

    Well, the way I see it, the tension's always been about representation: Kord as the goofy, "shallow" fluff stuff, Reyes as the Big Serious Issues guy. I suppose I can see why people would vacillate between the two, or prefer Kord because he's less of a downer (or DOWNER!, even) than Reyes.

    But to be honest, I wonder more about what would happen if Kord and Reyes had co-existed - two approaches working simultaneously. Oh, I guess it'd be difficult to work two opposing angles at the same time, but on the other hand, slipping some Reyes in with the daily helping of Kord might actually lead somewhere interesting.

    And no, the above is not at all analogous to anything else going on at OS. :)

  10. Maybe it's just from growing up reading Justice League in the '90s, but I'm going to have to go with Ted Kord.

  11. and just for good measure: Ted Kord was a superhero. I liked him.

  12. Ok, so I commented on this before reading the "Open Letter" post. Now I feel kind of like an ass.

    That post reminded me of something my friends and I say a lot, half-joking: "I hate people who are into what I'm into." And I'm not using you as the target of my hate, for the record, but the people to whom you're responding.

    I noticed while flipping through Previews earlier tonight just how much my way of looking at the solicits has changed since I started reading OS. "Look, there's the new 'sexy demon' villain in the X-books." "Look, there's anything Top Cow puts out." It's like a bad joke that just keeps getting told over and over (then again, I say the same thing about Hooters and Kid Rock and Sarah Palin).

    I've noticed that the internet has become like a giant id for society, where people can check all of the rules and mores and social nicities that are imposed on them in real life, and just be their true selves, no matter how immature or mean or potentially stupid they may come off.

    For what it's worth, I was never turned off by the blood. It's why I keep reading OS when I stopped caring about... well, pretty much any other comic blog.

    Yeah, it sucks to hear that the people running DC are total douchebags (or were, or whatever), but at 32 years old, I think I can handle the truth. And I think I can attribute a lot of my current anxiety/moodiness on not only the meltdowns occurring all over, but the election, and what that means.

    Of course I realize if you're really going for a Kaufman bit, the whole post could have been some joke-within-a-joke mindfuck, but I'm going to assume it wasn't. Otherwise I'll feel like a real ass for writing this when I should be going to sleep so I can get up and go to my job in the morning.

  13. I really like Ted Kord.

    However, please note that i've very much warmed up to Jamie Reyes, and would quite enjoy a world where they both exist peacefully together. But in a pinch I'll go with preferring Ted.

  14. I like Ted, but Jamie is a worthy successor.

  15. Ugh-

    Full disclosure. I came home tonight, after, for the first time ever, falling asleep on the train, and waking up in Coney Island, far past my stop, and very confused, and just wanted to look at the internets.

    And Dangit- in my, had too many drinks, still wet from the rain stupor, i went to your site and thought- Gosh Darnit- I do like Blue Beetle! In fact, not 5 feet to my right is the original art of the last punch Ted Kord delivers to that big bastard Maxwell Lord. It's all framed and everything.

    And anyway.......... I read a bit more and i'm like... oh i'm a big confused drunken guy now as this is really just a follow up to one of those posts that's supposed to make me feel guilty for liking comic books.

    Dang it. Well I still like Ted Kord best. Regardless of on my inability to read the next post before commenting on the first post.

    Dang it.

  16. I would have to say Jaime Reyes. The current ongoing is probably the best new comic DC has put out in recent memory.

    I do have a soft spot for Ted Kord after reading a lot of Booster Gold.

  17. I never read many Dan Garrett stories.

    I like Jamie Reyes very much, but to be The Blue Beetle will forever be Ted Kord.

  18. Ted Kord.

    How about you? Do you like Blue Beetle at all? If so, which version? If not, why not?

  19. Anonymous5:36 AM

    MMm Jamie of course.

    But really, who cares?

    Now, there was a rather interesting article in the paper today here in sweden. They had interviewed a number of prominent swedish blogging women, and it turned out that over half of their comments were insulting, negative and hateful, up to the point of death threats. Yes, no matter what the subject, even the utterly harmless fashion/lifstyle blogs. So while I appreciate the irony of this post (I sure as hell hope it ain't real!) don't expect anything to change.

    You can't reason with these people. They have the time, they have the mindset, and they will never ever be convinced that they are wrong. To be fair, in their minds they are not wrong, and that is their right to feel that way. However, there is a difference between disliking what someone types, and going out of your way to tell someone so every single time. Seriously. About 80% of the things I read on the net makes me roll my eyes and think that these people are idiots, but I simply don't come back and read it again. For someone to continually come back to read and be infuriated, that's not about the blogger. It's about the commenter.

    I think it is all about power and control. Perhaps they lack power and control in their real life, and they are trying to take it back by trying to make the internet confirm to their wishes. Surely they can make themselves feel a little bit better by forcing someone on the net that they perceive as having influence feel worse about themselves? Maybe, gasp, shock, they will even manage to change that persons views and conform to what they want that person to be instead.

    Or, and this is the sad truth, they are just like kids poking an anthill just because it is fun to watch them upset. When you write angry posts about it they giggle and feel fulfilled.

    You can't win this war. There is no way. And even more, it is not a war you have to fight.

    My suggestion to you would be to find a person that you trust, and who is willing to do so, to go through the comments for you and just delete all the crap. It is much easier for someone who just didn't pour their heart out there to laugh at the pettiness and push the delete button. Just stop reading them. This is not losing the battle any more than picking up that annoying little dog that keeps barking at you and putting outside to shut the door. Really, if it was your dog, yes then it might be worth the fight to make it behave, but this is not even the neighbor's dog, it's just some crazy coon that popped in there from nowhere. Don't waste time trying to reform it, just dump it.

    Like you say, you're not doing this for the money, and I for one is reading this because of the cynism and the insights. I am reading it for you.

    Please, please, please don't stop being you.

  20. When catching sight of a Blue Beetle back issue at the comic book store, is it appropriate to sock your companion in the arm and say, "Slug bug blue"?

  21. Anonymous7:36 AM

    I have a soft spot for Ted, simply because when I started getting into comics, I bought a whole load of Len Wein written issues. Add to that the fantastic JLI of the time and he is my favourite. To be honest I thought his last story was a decent swan song for him, although I would rather it hadnt happened. His appearances in Booster Gold have been really good too.
    I havent read any Dan Garrett (not that I remember anyway) so cant comment on him.
    Jaime is a decent character and I have read a few issues but there isn't enough there to make me pick up the book regularly.

  22. Jaime, with Ted very close behind but only when he is with Booster Gold. I've never read any Dan Garrett stories.

  23. Sigh. I read this in Google Reader, so I missed the whole Andy Kaufman/open letter thing.

    I hate Andy Kaufman. He rubs me the exact same way as Sasha Baron Cohen and I can't stand to watch him.

    Let me know when this art project is over and you're back to being you not a character.

    I come here to read the stuff you think is interesting, not performance art made to show how shallow I am because I have a preference for one Blue Beetle over another.

  24. Ted Kord - My favorite character overall. I fell in love with him during the JLI run. As cool as Jaime and Dan are/were, they just can't match up to Ted.

  25. Jamie is the character responsible for getting me interested in comics as an adult. It's nice to have a superhero who is a genuinely good kid with a functional family and real friends. I love that he has fun being a superhero, while still taking threats seriously. While Spiderman broods, Blue Beetle just tells his folks about being a superhero and gets their support. I've got respect for Dan and Ted (hell, so does Jamie), but the current Blue Beetle fills a niche in the DCU that I think has been missing for a while. He's a teen hero who focuses more on being a hero than a teen.

  26. I like the Blue Beetle where the blog is controversial because it takes on the tough topics, whether or not I agree with its conclusions or not.

    And also Ted Kord just because he was the one of record during the time when I was more into superhero stuff. And he was drawn sometimes with a bit of a paunch... wasn't he? Or am I confusing him with Nite Owl again?

    Although I can really appreciate the still-older Blue Beetle version and especially the newer Jamie Reyes guy because he seems to make a lot of disenfranchised comic readers happy. Some of my online friends really dig him.

    But my favorite Beetle is John.

  27. Ted Kord. I got into all the acquired Charlton characters during COIE and was a regular subscriber to his solo series run back in the 80's. Good times.

  28. I like Ted the best, but Jamie is a worthy successor.

  29. I vote for Val the honest, angry, spitfire blogger. Occasional Superheroine is one of my must-reads every day. Good stuff.

    Hang in there Val. I know life sucks sometimes, but you can't let it get to you.

    You have everything you need to succeed. Make the choice in your mind and commit to making today a good day.

  30. Aha - read the Open Letter second and realized this is a semi-goof.

    That said, still put me down for "Ted Kord", pre and post-Bwah-haha rendition in 90s JL.

  31. Anonymous9:26 AM

    I dig Ted Kord, cuz JLI was my DCU entry book and go-to fun-read during my teen angst BS... but Jaime is making strides. Sorry, Dan, it's definitely not you.

  32. I would firmly say Jaime Reyes, since that's the first Blue Beetle book that I read. He's a kid with powers, and he's really likable, and he has a very strong supporting cast. He's the only one that I've seen that can actually support the lead in a title. Ted Kord has always been best in ensemble, like the Giffen/DeMatteis JLI. His personality really lends itself to humor, and bounces well off other characters. Just my preference, having read both extensively.

  33. There are kindred spirits out there. And when they stumble onto your blog, is this Blue Beetle nonsense the kind of stuff you want them to find? (DC 1 Million Blue Beetle is the best, BTW.)

    Who is this for?

  34. Ted Kord. Without a doubt. Reasons why:

    -Strengths are only his mind and physical training. Dan and Jaime both drew reserves of power from the scarab wheras Ted unable to figure out the scarab's secrets STILL choose to carry on the Blue Beetle mantle with just some tights and a repulsor-esque gun.

    -Using aformentioned "BB gun". The thing was solar powered and had the ability to focus compressed air or light to disable/weaken enemies. It's a stun gun essentially and yet Ted STILL made it look bad ass when he was jumping around an tusseling with the bad guys.

    -The Beetle Ship aka "The Bug"...invented by Ted (WAY cooler then the Batwing)

    -The relationship dynamic between Ted and Barbara was one of the most adorable relationships in DC. It gave Ted depth as the nerdy guy trying to do right, and showed Barbara's more oft ignored light-hearted side. With Dick it was all drama and the like, with Ted, it was two geeky people that pushed each other and cared for one another. Garrett's overall personality and relationships were surface-y at best and Jaime..well his character has slowly been given greater and greater depth...but not enough for me yet.

    -He FACED DOWN DOOMSDAY. DOOMSDAY PEOPLE! Did he get his arse totally handed to him? YES.. BUT, the dude tried to go toe to toe with the creature that would eventually kill Superman.

    -He always had a since of humor about him that didn't feel forced. Jaime and Dan just don't get that same sort of goofiness.

    -Blue & Gold dynamic shines better then Blue & Red "buddy" dynamic.

    -He has been the only character in any comic I've ever read that for a brief time had a "weight problem" depicted moderately realistically. I was a fat kid in high school...what can I say, I related to the guy.

    There is probably more I can say but yep...those are the reasons Ted is the best out of all three Blue Beetles.

  35. Jaime hasn't been around long enough. Ted is my favorite, but Jaime's stories so far, have been the best Blue Beetle tales yet.

  36. I don't care. I really hope you don't stop posting serious stuff. If I want just jokey comic book stuff, I can do that on my own blog.

    Isn't that what writers do? Cut off their flesh for everyone to take a look? It's what the best writers do, anyway, without even knowing it.

    Keep doing what you do. Those of us who care will keep reading, "downer" topics or not.

  37. I'd say Jaime cause I never really cared for the others. Jaime is like the new Spiderman.

  38. I posted my response to the "Open Letter" via your About Me page. I thought I was following directions. I already closed it, so I can't repost it here. But I meant every word.

    And I repeat my suggestion to read Stephen King's On Writing if you haven't already.

    But I have no opinion on the Blue Beetle, I've only seen him in Kingdom Come and I don't think he had any lines.

  39. As I'm apparently being lumped into the brain-dead group that keeps getting referenced, I'll refrain from commenting further and just leave. I've no desire to be the sugject of condescension when I am attempting to offer constructive criticism.

    I guess there are only two kinds of people: (1) Those who want meaty content and (2) Those who want lunacy. And never the twain shall meet.

    Me, I dig a little chocolate with my peanut butter and vice versa, so I'm outta here.

    To those who enjoy the blog in its current state and to you, Val, I wish you the best.

  40. I'm torn. John was always my fave Beatle but I have a soft spot for George too.

  41. Hey! Reading blog posts in reverse order makes for weird linear tricks. Anyhow, I say I want both. Heck, I want everything. The best thing about blogs is the breakdown of media genre. I want to read about your toys (which I just don't get) & your critiques of comics (which I might agree or disagree with) or insight on the comic book industry (they did WHAT now?) or Which Blue Beetle is best, or WHATEVER. Throw it all out there, is what I say.

  42. Anonymous11:43 AM

    You write from the heart and with a great deal of genuine, sincere conviction.

    I don't think that in this blog if you devoted it to fantasy trivia.

  43. Kind of proving your point with the comments here, Val...don't know how to feel about it.

    Even still. Your insights and willingness to write about what you see that's wrong--that's hugely important. I'm constantly wrestling with the "objectivity" question as a journalist, as many other writers have been for the past eight years--and look where that's gotten us? Bush and a financial meltdown.

    I'm coming to realize that if more people say things about the injustices they see, it's important. Don't stop.

  44. Clearly, by Blue Beetle, you mean blue states. This is another partisan step in the liberal agenda, and why I am not going to read this blog anymore.

    Good day, sir.


  45. Write what matters to you. That's what I want to read.


  46. Uh... was my last comment really not allowed? If so, why?

  47. I first found "Goodbye to Comics" and was hooked. It was a candid report on the sorry state of things, told with anger, wit, self-effacing humor and most of all....GRACE
    I've held with you since looking for more of that. The internet is a fortress for armchair critics and rude opinionated feebs who can back up none of their bosts. This is your chosen arena and so you must deal with those feebs and smile when they have their fingers in their noses.
    But these new posts: I'm not sure how much is anger, and how much is meant to be satiric wit.
    They read angry and disgusted. And most importantly - GRACELESS
    my suggestion: either "don't let the bastards wear you down!" or, you need to ask yourself if you enjoy doing this blog anymore.

  48. I first found your "Goodbye to Comics" and was hooked. It was a report on the sad state of things told with anger, wit, self-effacing humor and most importantly - GRACE.
    I've follwed you since looking for more of the same. But these latest posts - read angry and disgusted and...GRACELESS.
    The internet is a fortress for every armchair critic and rude, opinionated feebs who cannot back up any of their boasts. Since this is your chosen arena, you must face down these feebs and relax and smile when they show their fingers in their noses.
    I'm not sure how much of these new posts is meant to be satiric wit, or how much is anger.
    They read angry. And unhappy.
    My suggestion is either to "not let the bastards get you down!" or ask yourself how much you really enjoy doing this blog anymore.
    ...And I say this with all due love...

  49. Sorry to comment twice - It's my first time & didn't understand why I didn't see it posted - OOPSIE!

  50. Ted Kord because he was created by Steve Ditko, a man who essentially stood by his principles his entire career no matter how many people ridiculed him or thought he was "off."

    So write what you want, but remember it's possible that some of your readers maintain comics-only blogs AND lead active political lives that include reading the Wall Street Journal.

  51. Anonymous2:26 PM

    This is my first time posting here, I think. I love your blog, including the angry rants. I know it's hard not to let the dickweeds get to you, but screw 'em. Post what you want, point and laugh at idiots who troll your blog and tell you you're a "femenazi" (sic) or you're being unfair to poor DC Comics, or ignore them, as the mood strikes you. You didn't build up a readership because people want to read Blue Beetle fluff. There's an awful lot of us who don't usually comment, but enjoy your writing. The malcontents are disproportionately represented in your comments because they're the ones pathetic enough to feel a need to lash out at a blogger who says something they don't like.

  52. Ted Kord. Just a normal guy in tights using his wits and intellect. That will win me over everytime.

    Jaime has potential and is growing on me.

    Garrett is before my time and never had a shot.

  53. Without a doubt, Ted Kord. He never should have been killed of the way he was, DC really screwed the pooch on that one. Hey, at least DC is "dark and edgy" now, right? isn't that what everyone wanted? Ugh.

    Keep up the good work Val. Your blog is a breath of fresh air. I read it daily and enjoy it immensely.

  54. I liked your old (the real you) blog style better. I like your edgy and more importantly, honest, evaluations.

  55. Val, you're turning into charlie brown. I feel like you need linus to come up and remind you what christmas is really about.

    ... oh yeah, ted cord...

  56. Ted Kord, because he got shot in the head and went out like a punk.

  57. I posted my more in-depth diatribe on the comments page of your 'About Me' page but, in the order I read 'em:

    1) Keep it real.

    2) Jaime Reyes.


  58. Anonymous3:37 PM

    Jaime Reyes. He's such a sweet guy, he wants to be a dentist so he can help his parents and pay for his sisters college and he's very open and he's just such a good person and the kind of guy I wanna be like.

    Ted was fun, sure, but I think Jaime is great.

  59. Ted Kord was my first big DC character...besides "Captain Carrot," I hadn't read any DC books until Crisis on Infinite Earths and I gravitated towards Kord immediately. That continued well through his solo book and the JLI series. When he was killed in (what I felt was) such a stupid, unnecessary manner, DC Comics, which had been my company of choice, took the ball that had been dropped with the Dr. Light/Sue Dibny scene in Identity Crisis and further buried it deep underground.

    Since then, I haven't been a big Jaime Reyes fan but he's finally recently started to grow on me, especially in light of other unnecessary character deaths that've been handled worse (the Question) and the way Ted was mis-managed by Geoff Johns when he came back in the Booster series. I still gravitate mainly towards Ted, but I'm a lot more open to Jaime than I've ever been before.

    What I'd really like to see is either a return or some kind of flashback series for Dan Garret (in light of Ted dying, I was hoping Dan would make a comeback). He's supposedly had this long career in the post-Crisis DCU but we've barely seen a hint of it. Let's see him interacting with other "new" heroes of the day like Batman or Superman or GL. Let's see him and Rex Mason compare archaeology notes.

    I'm okay with Ted being gone (although I still think the means with which he was dispatched was stupid) and am better with Jaime, but I think Dan is a font of untapped potential that should be addressed, either in the modern DCU or a book set in the past.

  60. Anonymous4:03 PM

    My favorite is "The Giant Mummy Who Was Not Dead". Does he count?

  61. I just want to quote the previous post.

    "And the funny thing is -- after this post, which is so long and so full of DOWNER! that I doubt there are many of you who have gotten this far -- I don't think that many people will care or remember. I think they will see "what Blue Beetle is your fave rave" and just take it from there."

    I guess you were right. But I do hope you get back to blogging about whatever it is that you really want to blog about. (Hope that didn't come off as flippant; it wasn't meant to be. I have enjoyed reading your blog for many months now and think it would be a shame for you to write 'down.')

  62. LOL.

    (Can I say Dan Dreiberg?)

  63. i think people would take this blog more seriously if there wasn't such a revenge on DC slant. i mean, you were complaining about Super Girl on the cover of FC #3 while Marvel came out with this:

    you then complain about teenagers being attacked in Teen Titans while not blogging about the fact that X-23 is a female child soldier for the good guys. At least in Teen Titans those girls being hospitalized was a bad thing - and to compare to some pornographic fetish was way over the top.

    i think highlighting the problems of DC as a company is important, but a lot of times you attack the books without examining the same problems at Marvel, Image, etc. sometimes i wonder if you read the books you attack or just flip through them and scan images that you can rant about.

    there's speculation that you were thrown a bone, so to speak, by Marvel with the Cloak and Dagger series for the constant harping against DC -and honestly i'm not sure at this point if that isn't true. we'll have to see when the first issue hits the stands.

  64. I think you do yourself a disservice and sell yourself short by not writing about what you want to write about.

    Honesty is such a lonely word, but in this case you have a voice that needs to be heard.

  65. by the way my last comment wasn't meant to be for public posting, just my thoughts and feelings to you personally.

    keep fighting Val,


  66. Anonymous5:50 PM

    Yeah. My favorite is totally that one guy. You remember? He had that thing that did stuff?

    Oh, and he was also totally into writing cool shit on a blog about comics. The blog was all about stiring up the sentiments of all the readers who accessed it. It was written really well and delivered profound insight into the comic book industry as well as bringing up controversial information that may not otherwise have been covered.

    That guy was fucking cool.

  67. I just wanted to say thanks for this delightful Blue Beetle topic, because reading about the comic and planet and how generally fucked we are all afternoon has me wanting to cut my arms off.

  68. There are been plenty of comic blogs that joke about Silver Age panels, revel in gossip, make pop culture snides, and yes, debate the "best" incarnation of a character. But they shouldn't all be.

    Do what you'd like and if this is really the direction you'd prefer, go ahead and embrace it. But my opinion is that you should stick to your own unique voice.

    Don't think I've ever commented on your blog before, but I've been reading it several times a week for nearly two years. I'm fairly confident that this post is not serious, but just in case I figured I'd say my piece.

  69. I echo Brian (except I found your blog researching women in comics for an article I never wrote...yet). I like people who speak their minds and don't sugar coat with bullshit.

    And I only have several books with Ted, so my biased opinion'd be Jamie right now.

  70. Jason Todd is my favorite Blue Beetle.

  71. Life is more than one thing.

    Some parts of life are about serious issues.

    Some parts are about who would win in a fight between a werewolf and a dinosaur.

    The first bits are more important than those second bits, but the second bits have their place in life, too.

    You should write what you want to write. Period. If that means selling out, then go ahead and sell out. If it means being unpopular but true to yourself, then take that path.

    I have an actual greeting card that says "It's better to be hated for who you are than loved for who you aren't."

    I think the same thing applies to blogs and writing.

    Personally, I enjoyed Ted Kord, but the writers have done some amazing things with Jaime, his cast, and the issues they've been able to address.

    Also, a werewolf would totally clobber a dinosaur.

  72. I like the Ted Kord Blue Beetle the best. His goggles remind me of Wonder Girl's boobies.

  73. Unlikely Lass...

    While I'm sure there are some dinosaurs that your average werewolf can defeat, I seriously doubt aforementioned werewolf can defeat a dinosaur...



  74. It seems rather pointless to add to the chorus of Jaime Reyes, but I will, anyway. This is the Internet. There's lots of room.

  75. Valerie,

    I enjoy when you write about how comics are too violent for kids. I suspect that for the American psyche, violence is a substitute for creative problem solving. I also like when you post about about a disturbing World's Finest Comics cover as an example and make the reader look it up to discover that it's about forty years old.

    I also enjoy when you write about the parallel between the idiots ignoring the probability of global calamity on the planet Krypton and the same type of idiots on the planet earth. It's a great point.

    We all wish that comics publishers would stop producing comics that seem aimed at satisfying an executive dictum. Hopefully there will always be a few artists and writers out there who care about producing fun, creative, thought-provoking, emotional, intelligent and visceral (without actual viscera).

    Anyway, I like reading your blog. No reason why you can't let the blog reflect your many moods. Just don't ask me which Blue Beetle I prefer, because I like my Blue Beetles cancelled.

  76. Ted Kord, even though his potential was never fully realized. His technology was high-tech in the 1960s, but never changed with the times. If writers had updated his weapons and technology in the 90s and 2000s, he might still be around.

  77. BTW, now that I've read the open letter and the rest of the comments here, my response basically echoes those of "Unlikely Lass." (Whose name I love and would like to see used as the new leader of the Legion of Substitute Heroes...)

    Write what you want to write. Write what you feel, write what you're thinking, write what you're passionate about. Whatever your goals, whatever your strengths, whatever your emotions, write with those in mind and you can't go wrong.

    Heck, I probably disagree with tons of things you believe, Val, and vice versa. But that doesn't mean I don't enjoy reading your stuff.

  78. Wouldn't this experiment have been better if you didn't tell people what it was all about in the previous post?

  79. Characterwise, my fave Blue Beetle is the one who is ALWAYS overlooked, i.e. Ringo.

    As far as the run of the title went, I liked it better when no punches were pulled as opposed to the current "safe as milk" phase, though I have to admit that I felt the villain Gilgongo was overused of late and could use a bit of a break. I know that there's a compelling backstory there and all, but maybe some other members of the Rogues' Gallery could be explored instead?

    Just to keep things from getting monotonous...

  80. Dear Val,

    I never read your blog until someone sent me a link to your "Goodbye To Comics" series. And that was what drew me in and kept me reading.

    I like honest, angry Valerie. I like it when writers don't bother to sugar-coat things, because readers have grown oblivious to anything that has the edges sanded off for them. Sometimes what people need is to see someone saw their arm off in front of them. (I especially like it when this is well done and well written - which your stuff is.)

    It doesn't mean that it sucks any less for the person doing the sawing. Which is why we have so many comics-culture related blogs featuring posts like "which Blue Beetle is your favorite?", where the writers' personal reactions are watered down to be made more acceptable for the mainstream comics industry. It takes a very strong person to be able to write something like "Goodbye to Comics", knowing the reactions that they may get from some assholes, and knowing that they're putting their very personal anger and pain out into the fucking blogosphere.

    But I was grateful to see you doing it. Because there are many, like me, who don't have the guts to speak up with our personal stories of alienation and our own visceral reactions to shit like the current Teen Titans run. We tell ourselves it doesn't matter; we tell ourselves we'll only be setting ourselves up for more crap.

    And then you come along and you say it all for us. You publish a blog, which seems like such a simple thing, but with it you say "Hey, you know what? No. It does matter. It IS important. And it's worth the potential aggravation to say so."

    I know people who, upon reading your "Goodbye to Comics", started looking more critically at their own reading choices. Started looking at the Big Two more analytically. Started going, "Hey, you know, this stuff IS really sexist and bad."

    People, like my friends, get it. And people, like me, appreciate it.

    I guess maybe it feels sometimes like emptying the ocean with a teaspoon. But please don't stop. It is important to people. You have shown people that it is important. And for every dick who sends you death threats, there is someone who wishes success and well-being for you.


    PS. My favorite Blue Beetle is Ted. Although I do like Jaime - it's pretty difficult not to.

  81. I find it amusing, in a way, that this has turned into a mix of comments on its own topic and comments on the preceding post. So I'll say it's a toss-up between Ted and Jaime...

    But I'll also say that I have read, enjoyed, and supported your posts, all except for the ones like the last one. And I didn't support your last post not because I don't want you to write what you feel, but because I think it's unfair to the people who do support you to write a generalized and undifferentiated post saying, "You don't support me!" I think it could have been refined and tightened up a bit to make it clear that you're not talking about the entire audience of your blog when you say things like that.

    (Unless, of course, you are talking about the entire audience of your blog. In which case, I'm going off to have a good, long cry about how you were mean to me. I have sensitive feelings.)

    So in short--hang in there, be tough, write what you feel, remember there are people who support you and will say so, avoid friendly-fire posts, and Ted and Jaime are both good characters.

  82. Anonymous11:12 PM

    I personally like Ted Kord. I think he was a very underrated hero in his day, and I think he showed true potential in his final hours.

    I haven't really read much new Blue Beetle stuff with Reyes, but I did like his role in Infinite Crisis.

  83. Just to be a downer the Orphan Works Bill just got fastlined in the Senate and passed without debate. Write your congressmen and try and stop this thing in the House.

    Oh and I like all the Blue Beetles, though the golden age one always reminds me of the Phantom.

  84. Ted Kord.
    One of the comics I read regularly back in the '60s was the Charlton Blue Beetle. Because of Ditko's unique art style, I thought they were trying to rip off Spider-Man (which Ditko had just left!) with another double-jointed wise-cracking acrobatic hero named after an arthropod!


  86. Ted Kord will always be MY Blue Beetle, although Jaime Reyes is quickly working his way up. I loved the recent BOOSTER GOLD storyline where Ted, Jaime, and Dan Garrett got to work together, especially the sly "Abbey Road" reference.

  87. Anonymous7:40 AM

    .. i can't believe you actually posted this after your previous post. You're hilarious :)

    Keep it up.

  88. I like the Steve Ditko Beetle for the art and the Ted Kord Beetle for the humour. I haven't read the lastest incarnation...


  89. By the way, mark me down as one who doesn't think that there's anything wrong with an anti-DC slant, even if you had one.

    DC is big enough to stick up for itself if it ever felt it needed to.

    Your blog is not a "news source of record" or anything, so I see no reason anyone should think you are obligated to cover anything other than what catches your attention.

  90. Good grief. I'm really sick of people announcing that they're "leaving" or not reading anymore. This is NOT YOUR BLOG, people. If you want a pro-DC blog or a blog about stuff Marvel is doing that is really bad..._write your own blog about it_.

    And stop announcing that you're "leaving," it just makes you look like little kids kicking the dirt and running home pouting with their toys.

  91. i think people would take this blog more seriously if there wasn't such a revenge on DC slant. i mean, you were complaining about Super Girl on the cover of FC #3 while Marvel came out with this:

    you then complain about teenagers being attacked in Teen Titans while not blogging about the fact that X-23 is a female child soldier for the good guys. At least in Teen Titans those girls being hospitalized was a bad thing - and to compare to some pornographic fetish was way over the top.

    i think highlighting the problems of DC as a company is important, but a lot of times you attack the books without examining the same problems at Marvel, Image, etc. sometimes i wonder if you read the books you attack or just flip through them and scan images that you can rant about.


    How the Finch cover for the first part of X-Infernus escaped your wrath I'll never know.

    That was much much worse than the bally-hooed Final Crisis #3 cover.

  92. Anonymous7:34 PM

    Just another thing that I thought about. I mean I don't know Val, at all. But I always thought that one of the reasons why she focused on DC stuff was that she had worked for them once and had a few bad experiences.

    I mean aren't you allowed to have feelings here? When was this supposed to be a fair and biased exposition of all comic book companies, big and small? Honestly, there is nothing more annoying than reading in the comments 'butbutbut if THAT is bad, THIS is bad too, why did you not mention THIS and THIS and THIS and OMG BIAS!'

    And I'm way more of a DC fan than Marvel, though Marvel Space is slowly winning me over... I'm just not threatened by the fact that the company that produces some things I like might be bastards. Hell, I assume they all are.

  93. Hrm.

    Here's the difference in the two covers. Carol Danvers is a grown woman, and before retcons, was a contemporary of Logan (Wolverine) of a sorta. She's a military woman and has been played up as a sex symbol for years, despite her feminist origins. Do I think the cover is pretty bad? Yeah, but I haven't picked up the Ms. Marvel reboot since around issue 2 where I got really bored.

    Supergirl is a teenager. She's no older than 16 or 17 in her current incarnation. Playing up anything with her in terms of sexuality is, well...creepy. Even if you're playing it up to teenagers (and let's be honest, DC isn't, because most of the long term fans and fans of Final Crisis are all older men like us).

    So are both covers really bad in that context, yeah. But while I didn't find the Supergirl cover to be all that bad, I can see where the concern comes in....because Kara HAS been played up as a sex symbol by DC in the past.

    The only interesting use of that was when she hit on Hal Jordan and he told her to cut it out.

  94. No trying to shamelessly plug myself here, but I'm a fan and supporter of Val and I wrote a long blog of my own in her defense...


  95. Although part of me wants to see this blog go all Blue Beetle all the time, I'd like to point out one of things that makes the whole of the blog, from Goodbye to Comics on through to here, interesting:

    I read OS's commentary/focus on DC as being part of the big project, which is to show how a in-office corporate culture (as experienced by the author) which is both sexist, and also generally cruel and misanthropic, results in products that exhibits that misanthropy--like the Teen Titans Wendy and Marvin bait-and-switch, and whatever else you have.

    I don't think that was by OS's design, necessarily, but that's how it works for me, and that's why this blog is one of about only four comic media sources I read regularly.

    If you take that as the premise of the whole blog, then it would be false and dishonest for the blogger in question to focus equally on every comic company would be kind of false and dishonest.

  96. I find that Hysan is increasingly becoming my Occasional Superheroine comments section hero.

  97. Your blog is the only comics blog I didn't stop reading eventually, and it was specifically because there's more to it than lighthearted "Hey, look at this!" posts. It's your soul-baring writing that has made this site worth reading, even when I disagree with your opinions and conclusions.

    I'm no spectacular writer, so there's essentially no chance of me conveying the amount and kind of emotion I feel at having read your post, so I suppose I'll just end here, with a "thank you".

    Thank you.

  98. Please, please, please don't stop cutting off your arm! That's what makes you great. Even if you stop this blog, please remember this.

  99. In answer to your posted question?

    I enjoy drawing Ted Kord and his gadgetry. I enjoy reading about Jaime Reyes.

    Dan Garrett? I've never gotten a chance to really know him yet.