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Indulge me for a few moments, friends, as this article is going to be mostly wish fulfillment. Listed here will be four comic books that I have longed to exist, but the fates have cruelly chosen otherwise.
No, it’s not a Doctor Doom comic listed four times. There already was a Doom comic thank you very much.
I’m cheating a little bit with this one, sure. It more or less already happened with New X-Men and it’s kind of happening in the current Uncanny X-Men, but in each of these titles the school aspect is barely explored.
Imagine all the troubles of high school and now imagine everyone is a mutant. Imagine your crush can read your mind, you’re trying to deal with hormones as well as potentially dangerous powers, your teachers have saved the planet, and your bully is an 8 feet tall fire monster. We already have like a half a dozen X-Men books exploring mutants fighting against a world that hates and fears them, but none that really focus on the core aspect: the school.
I’ve had this idea called “Harry Potter with Mutants” and while I don’t think it’s the same message, it’s definitely a similar structure.
This kind of book’s biggest advantage is that it could easily pick up new readers mostly because it doesn’t require you to learn the history of Marvel to follow along. Not only that, but the new readers would be from a wider audience. Most younger people and fans of the young adult genre wouldn’t really be down for another Spider-Man vs. Obscure Villain comic, but they would definitely read about a bunch of relatable young people dealing with super powers in a school for people with super powers. That’s enticing. That has tons of potential.
DC can’t lay off the bat crutch, we know this. How many Batman titles are out now? How many comics are centered around the Batfamily? We’re not seeing an end to Batmania anytime soon. Another big issue with the DCnU is its habit of rehashing stories instead of Snyder-like innovation.
There’s a comic that could solve both of these.
Imagine a comic based around a character living in Gotham completely separate from Batman and his Batfamily. Using only his meager, street-level means he sets out to punch crime in the face. Maybe he can try to fill in the absence in one of the many times Batman “disappears” and Gotham goes to pot.
We can then see Gotham in a whole new light. A vigilante without unlimited resources going head-to-head with the city’s worst. Batman is only some far away ideal, a symbol, a hero he tries to live up to. And keep in mind, he only knows what the average Gotham citizen knows about Batman, so we’re seeing the Bat as the man on the street would. All the Batcave, Bruce Wayne, and such are not included. Only a mysterious night-beast that may or may not be real.
It doesn’t stop there. We would see the villains in a new light too. How would The Riddler take on a new, untested adversary? The Penguin? I know you’re thinking it. How would someone new deal with the Joker? How would Batman deal with someone new dealing with the Joker?
The hardest part would be keeping DC from incorporating them into the Batfamily. Sigh.
I’m on the fence about this. You see Franklin Richards is the most powerful mutant to ever — or will ever — be born. It’s implied that when he’s about 30 or so he reaches a point where he becomes an ageless, Celestial punching Master of Galactus.
You see, Future Franklin Richards might be served better as this immense force on the periphery of Marvel. Maybe it’s best if he’s in small doses, popping in here and there to show off his god-powers. But we could be missing out!
Imagine a book that takes place three or four thousand years into Marvel’s future. We already have some issues of Thor: God of Thunder that do that and the original Guardians of the Galaxy kind of did, so it’s not that big a stretch. The Marvel Universe is a larger, cooler place. A whole new sandbox to explore.
Future Franklin Richards is a wandering god getting into scrapes and running into philosophical quandaries. Like Silver Surfer but on a whole different level.
Imagine all the philosophical problems he’ll get into with using his unlimited power. He has to decide if he should spare a planet of constantly warring aliens from a start about to go nova, or if should try to fix a civilization rife with social problems.
Would it be a flashy comic filled with punching and quips and more punching? No. It’d be a much more philosophical book exploring huge themes. However, when there is action it’s on the level of gods. Worlds are razed. Galaxies shake.
I don’t recall anything being close to this in either DC or Marvel. A few books have gotten a little close, but nothing’s ever nailed it. All things considered, I think it would work best for Marvel.
Imagine a book about a character who has been slighted by life and, through circumstance, becomes one of the super villains he sees on TV. For story purposes not a psychotic murderer, a la The Joker, more of the robs banks kind. Like a Weeds or Breaking Bad set in a comic book world.
It becomes a reverse comic where the usual heroes act as the antagonist. We sympathize with the villain’s situation and we actually feel sorry when Spider-Man beats the living crap out of him and feel victory when he pulls off a daring armored car robbery.
The whole norm gets turned on its head. You have villain team-ups instead of hero team-ups and some of the most popular heroes, like Wolverine, Spider-Man, etc, become these looming, nigh unstoppable threats.
Early in the series our villain is hardly taken seriously, but as he completes greater and greater feats he begins getting more rep in the villain community and more infamy among the heroes. He has to deal with cutting into established villain territory, crossing big bads like Doctor Doom, all while dealing with the regular difficulties of crime.
We see so often the comic book universe’s underbelly from a hero perspective, but we never really get what’s it’s like to come up there. A kind of reverse superhero origin story.
SO WHAT DO YOU THINK? Did I pique your interest? Are there comics just like these that I missed? Let me know in the comments below.