It's been a fascinating week in comics-news-dom with the rumors of Dan DiDio's firing. Rich Johnston at Comic Book Resources put it best that "based on nothing but fan discontent based on message board postings, this wishful thinking was whipped around the internet long enough until people convinced themselves that it was going to happen, even reaching outside of the fan community."
In and of itself, the fan blowup over the DiDio rumors is an amazing phenomenon, and one worthy of further study. But we come here today, as they say, not to bury Dan DiDio (or analyze comics fandom), but to praise him. I've spent the week, frankly, wondering if I'm reading the same DC Comics as everyone else -- personally, I think Dan DiDio has DC Comics producing its best work in years.
Let's talk about it. My reasons follow; if you agree or disagree, please leave a comment below -- or better, post on your own blog, link to this post, and email me (address at right) to let me know about it. I'll post a list of the responses later.
My reasons are these:
1) DiDio revitalized the summer event crossover. Say what you will about violence or tone or art delays, Identity Crisis and Infinite Crisis were riveting. Were you ever as interested, in the reading, with Genesis, or Joker: Last Laugh? Maybe there's too many crossover titles, maybe crossovers are too expensive -- but under DiDio's DC Comics reign, crossovers have been good.
2) DiDio has created greater continuity inside the DC Universe. You may not have liked when Wonder Woman killed Maxwell Lord, but the confluence of Wonder Woman, Superman, and The OMAC Project was inspired. You may not have liked that Bart Allen died, but when Countdown, Flash #13, and the end of Justice League of America: The Lightning Saga all hit at the same time, I think it really did break the Internet in half for a minute. You may not like the events happening in the DCU (and sometimes, you're not supposed to), but you can't deny that the universe is more cohesive than ever before, and personally that's something I enjoy.
3) DiDio puts emphasis on a good story. Superman: Last Son is by all accounts a debacle, but you have to admire the goal: delaying the story until the original writer and artist could finish it; ditto on Wonder Woman and other titles. Additionally, DiDio's been a big supporter of "indie" DC Comics, those titles with low sales but cult following like Manhunter and Blue Beetle. This, too, was something missing from DC Comics in the Chase and Damage days, and something I think we want to encourage.
Agree? Disagree? Again, let's talk. If you'd like to respond, please leave a comment below, or post to your own blog and let me know by email, and I'll link to your response. Thanks!