Fish or cut baitThese are the people you should be reading, instead of whatever trivial, meaningless-in-the-greater-context, entirely personal drivel I happen to be throwing at the walls of the monkey cage at any given moment:
The Poor Man
Kung Fu Monkey
These people got serious game when it comes to the writing thing. You should also read Daily KOS and Atrios and Billmon, whenever he gets around to putting up something new, which lately isn't often, so I sincerely hope the reason is he's met a 19 year old hottie and is spending a lot of time in a hammock with him or her, because nothing else would be a good enough reason for an analyst as brilliant as Billmon to keep his brilliant analysis from me for the extended periods he's taken to doing it.
Also, if SuperGirlfriend would get her fine, fine ass a blog, I'd always be recommending it, because she's about the wisest person I know, and has some writing game herself. But she just won't do it...
Anyway. I can't write as well as these people, and when I've tried to do the poli-blogging thing I was little more than an empty, posturing sham because, honestly, I just don't have the connections to do anything more than cruise around the blogosphere and reiterate stuff in my own second rate prose style that better bloggers with better sources have already stated more eloquently elsewhere.
So, instead, I'll cruelly mock a faction of my fellow comic book fans I don't like very much:
The Modern Age Fan -
Modern Age fans and I have been butting heads since the first Crisis On Infinite Earths. Anyone who actually thought that story had anything worthwhile in it at all (besides the art, I mean) was, de facto, a Modern Age fan, and, as Modern Age fans have continued to be nearly to a (wo)man since, completely idiotic. Crisis On Infinite Earths was, honestly, objectively, and irrefutably, bilious horseshit from panel one to the closing cover ad, and (again, other than the art, always other than the art, George Perez knocked himself out on the artwork for Crisis On Infinite Earths and he's an enormously talented penciller) anyone who liked any story element in it, much less the story as a whole, is frankly brain damaged.
Crisis came out before the Internet did, so headbutting back then was done on letters pages, in Amateur Press Alliances, and in person at comics shops (often at high decibels that may have, just occasionally, leaked over into a very slight level of shrillness). And it wasn't new even then; I'd been butting heads with nascent Modern Age fans for years before that in reference to horrifying wannabe Modern Age tripe like Marvel's New X-Men and DC's New Teen Titans. (To be clearer: The New X-Men are Modern Age, but Marvel's Modern Age began about ten years before DC's did. DC's started with Crisis in 1985, Marvel's began with Giant Size X-Men #1 in around 1975. So the New X-Men, and their fans, were always Modern Age, while the New Teen Titans predated DC's Modern Age by several years, even though the entire concept stank of the Modern Age from its inception.)
Once the Internet came along, of course, even in its first, crude form, headbutting rose to new heights, and I quickly picked up a great deal of experience with baiting the Modern Age fan out here in the ether. And when you're in the right mood, it can be a lot of fun, although, sadly, when one sobers up and looks back at such things objectively, it can also seem a great deal like putting a bucket of water atop an ajar door and luring a mentally retarded person into the room by shouting "Free donuts!" over and over again. It's funny, but, you know, it also seems kind of mean.
Unlike mentally retarded people, though, Modern Age fans pretty much deserve all the meanness you can shove their way, because, well, they're Modern Age fans, and therefore, wretched, miserable excuses for people, who actively conspire, connive, and collaborate at the ongoing degradation of a once great art form. They revel in the ruins of what was once magnificent, sneer at the greatest practitioners of an artform they claim to adore, and wave their monkey asses at all that used to be wonderous about comic books, while rolling around exultantly in the feces and vomit that comics have become over the past thirty years or so.
They are worthless, shabby, pitiful people. And we must mock them at every opportunity, or, by God, at least I must, or, by the Jesus, at the very least, I shall.
Here, then, are some Quick and Easy Tips for Baiting the Modern Age fan into an insensible rage:
1. Praise a Silver Age character somewhere on the Internet. It doesn't have to be on a comics related board or blog, either. You could head out to some Yahoo gardening group and hang a comment in their threads saying "You know, I really preferred Batman when he was the World's Greatest Detective, instead of being the World's Greatest Facebreaker". The poor housewives who populate the gardening group won't have more than the vaguest clue what you're talking about, but within picoseconds, avid slobbering Modern Age Batman fans will have found your comment on Google and swooped in like maddened velociraptors. "O so u like SISSY FAGGOT Batfag" they will sneer. "U r soooooo STEWpid the Batman now would so totaly pwn your pussy Batman", they will deride. Of course, the Modern Age Batman got his back broken by Bane and had to be replaced for year by a half-mad Frenchman with tin foil gloves, and he couldn't deduce who farted while trapped in an elevator with the corpse of Charles de Gaulle and the Kingpin eating bean dip, but never mind all that; according to every Modern Age fan in the universe, he would totally pwn the Silver Age Batman if they ever had a fight, and of course, that's the end of that, even though 'pwn' isn't actually a word.
You see, the Modern Age fan cannot abide any praise of any aspect of the Silver Age. This is because they fear and resent the Silver Age; they know, on some primordial level that they do not care to dwell on overly, that the Silver Age is a far far better age than any they have ever known, and they hate it, and therefore, they will not countenance or tolerate anyone anywhere saying anything positive about it. It bothers them, and threatens them, and infuriates them, and they will not have it. This is one reason they embrace continuity hating writers like Grant Morrison; they know Morrison can be trusted to either categorically ignore the Silver Age, or, better yet, if he actually uses Silver Age elements in a story, he will quite artfully degrade and demean them, which Modern Age fans just adore to read. In fact, there is nothing the average Modern Age fan likes more than seeing one of their Modern Age fan favorite writer/artist teams dig up an obscure, beloved Silver Age character, for the specific purpose of being sodomized, pissed on, and then flushed down a toilet into the sewer that is the Modern Age.
I theorize that this mostly comes down to changing values. One thing comics fans of all eras have in common is that we adulate our favorite heroes; they represent what we would like most to be. In the Silver Age, most of the heroes are adults, and they are moral, ethical, stalwart, and, well, heroic. They go out and do things, important things, and in their secret identities, they all have jobs. In other words, they work hard, they do the right thing, and they have accomplishments.
This is horror and anethema to the Modern Age fan, who is overstimulated and spoiled, has a microscopic attention span, who regards the very concept of a work ethic with appalled incredulity, and who would like nothing better than to sit in his bedroom in his mother's house for the rest of his life, playing video games, smoking dope, eating fast food, having his buddies over occasionally for really badly designed RPG sessions, and jerking off while he looks at Internet porn, or just Pamela Anderson on her new FOX show if his parents have put filters on his computer and he's too lazy to hack around them.
Some Modern Age fans are more adult than this; their parents are paying their way to college so they can delude themselves they are grown ups while they resolutely slack there, or their parents have insisted they start paying some sort of nominal rent, so they've gone out and gotten the first lousy job they can get that will meet their $25 a week nut, and pay for their comics and Magic: the Gathering fix, too, and they'll bitch and complain while they run the fryer at Burger King, and then they'll go home and happily sink back into their slacker lifestyle until they have to shamble off to their next shift.
These people don't want grown up superheroes who hold down jobs; they want perpetual adolescents with 'tude, dude, who sit around the Young Justice clubhouse playing HALO, throwing things at each other, leering at The Inevitable Female Member's ass in her Inevitable Tight Thong-like Costume Bottom, eating Little Debbie cakes, and sneering at whichever of their adult mentors happens to have drawn the really shitty job of coming around that week to try and motivate the little fuckers into actually doing something with their super powers and super lives.
These are the Modern Age fans who hate Geoff Johns the most, and why? Because he took the Modern Age Superboy, and the Modern Age Impulse, who used to behave precisely as I have described above (I mean, to a tee) and he had them actually grow up a little and begin to exhibit some vague vestiges of maturity.
It is a grotesquerie and a sedition to them, and they are outraged about it, and they just cry and cry and cry all over the Internet about it, too.
I have to get ready for work, so...
NEXT ISSUE: The Modern Age Fan and his/her deeply unhealthy attachment to Kyle Rayner, most worthless of all Green Lanterns