It Seems To Be Back To The ‘90s In Comics
Going over the news coming out of the Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo (C2E2) there was a comic coming out from DC Comics that is following a recent trend in comics that I personally find overexposed.
Following DC’s new Batman event Dark Nights: Metal, DC is starting a new imprint: Dark Matter. Dark Matter appears to be the most 90’s thing I’ve seen in comics since they announced the new Youngblood comic. One of the ways you know how 90’s these comics are is because DC’s announcement let the writers play second fiddle to the artists they had on these books. To the point that the artists got their own graphic advertisement telling me who they are, showing me what they look like and the most popular comics on their resume.
The only book from that list I found interesting was The Silencer by Dan Abnett and John Romita Jr. I’m a big fan of Abnett. I try and read as much from him as possible, both his comics and novels. Even video games if I hear he’s heavily involved in one. The Silencer though isn’t one of the comics of Mr. Abnett’s that I will be reading because I feel like I’ve read this comic before.
In 2012 Dynamite Entertainment released a comic from Garth Ennis and Adriano Batista called Jennifer Blood. Jennifer Blood was about a daughter to a crime family who had to fake her death to avoid being murdered. She then married and had children while waiting to enact her revenge against the uncles that killed her mother and father. The Silencer is about “Honor Guest, the former world’s deadliest assassin now trying for a quiet life in the suburbs until (surprise!) her former life comes back to haunt her” http://www.newsarama.com/34140-dc-to-launch-six-new-dc-dark-matter-titles.html . Jennifer Blood probably isn’t the first comic to explore this idea, but the concept of a former or active female assassin who has to commit murders while keeping this secret from her family is one I’ve seen in at least six different comics in the last five years. The previously mentioned Blood and Silencer, Black Bag from Legendary Entertainment and Lady Killer from Dark Horse in 2015, and Crosswind from Image and Beautiful Canvas from Black Mask Studios in 2017.
I’ve only read Jennifer Blood, so I can’t speak directly to the quality of any of the comics that came out before this year and the ones that are listed for this year haven’t come out yet. Some of those books are from writers I like; Ennis, Abnett and Gail Simone (who is writing Crosswind). Joelle Jones who writes and draws Lady Killer I don’t have an opinion on as a writer, but she’s a fantastic artist, but as I’ve mentioned many times I rarely, if ever, buy a comic because I like the art in it. I have a friend who really enjoys Lady Killer, but that’s the extent of my knowledge.
And I don’t want it to seem like I’m against the idea of a mom who can kick ass; far from it. My main concern is that most of these comics are just too similar to each other. They don’t do enough to differentiate between themselves. The two that seem different are Beautiful Canvas, which is about a hit-woman who ‘adopts’ a child and has to protect him from other killers and Crosswind which is about a hit-man and a housewife who switch bodies and as different as Crosswind sounds I can’t shake the feeling that if this had been a Japanese manga, things would likely get pervy, which isn’t saying that it won’t either.