But viewers grew tired of the show quickly turning it from a brief hit into a

But viewers grew tired of the show quickly turning it

This preview shows page 6 - 8 out of 11 pages.

Batman comics, in a bid for brand synergy, got similarly goofy. But viewers grew tired of the show quickly, turning it from a brief hit into a canceled failure and cultural punch line and spawning a wave of angry fan letters asking DC’s higher-ups to revise the character. One such letter, published in the pages of Batman No. 210: “Batman is a creature of the night. [He] prowls the streets of Gotham and retains an aura of mystery,” it read. “Get the super-hero out, and the detective in!” Batman comics were ailing in sales, so DC’s leadership was willing to give it a shot. Under the guidance of editor Julius “Julie” Schwartz, upstart writer/artist team Denny O’Neil and Neal Adams were put in charge of Batman . As O’Neil recalls it, “I walked into Julie’s of゙ce and he offered me Batman like this: ‘We’re going to keep publishing Batman , obviously, but we’re not gonna do the camp thing anymore. Whaddaya got, my boy?’ What I thought was this: we’ll go back to 1939.” O’Neil looked to Batsy’s grim origin story for inspiration: “You’ve got this dark guy who’s seen his parents killed and he spends his life symbolically avenging that death,” he says. “That version of Batman seems to be the one that’s right.” O’Neil and Adams opted to have Batman scowl instead of smile, go out in the darkness and eschew the light, and meditate on how few people he could truly trust. “Superman has more faith in the system,” says comics critic Ardo Omer. “Batman was created because the system failed him and continued to fail Gotham.” Batman was a much more natural icon of 1970s angst and anomie, but the darker turn in comics also came to Metropolis, where Superman’s virtues — once taken as self-evident — were being questioned in his own stories. O’Neil was brought on to write Superman tales, too, and felt it was no longer interesting to read about a perfect man who did only good. “The essence of fantasy melodrama is con゚ict,” O’Neil says. “You’ve got a guy who, at his strongest and most powerful, could blow out a sun! How are you going to create con゚ict for that guy?” DC’s leadership agreed. Through various in- story machinations, his powers were weakened for a while. But more important, doubting Superman became the order of the day. A 1972 tale penned by Elliot S. Maggin was boldly titled “Must There Be a Superman?” and saw the Man of Tomorrow realizing that he can’t ゙x structural problems like poverty and oppression. “You stand so proud, Superman ,” read the opening narration, “in your strength and your power — with a pride that has found its way into the soul of every man who has stood above other men! But as with all men of power , you must eventually question yourself and
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2018/12/3 Chegg: Signs of Life in the U.S.A.
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