31 Days of comics, day 21

Aaand we’re back, hi everyone.  The 31 days challenge rolls on over to the twenty-first day, and today we are looking at a comic that I used to love but now dislike.  A tricky one, as most of the time I pick up stuff that holds well for me.  There are plenty of things that I look back on and maybe it’s not quite as good as I thought, but rarely, if ever, is there something that I can say I actively dislike.  I got to thinking about it more and more, and came to a slightly depressing realisation.  Continue on for my sad jump into reality.

A comic you used to love but now dislike

The Darkness Rebirth (issues #101-116)

From the first panel of issue #1, I loved The Darkness.  I thought Jackie Estacado was a really interesting, multi layered character with so much to offer.  He also had one of the damned coolest powers going in comics, the ability to wield darkness, bend it to his will and create whatever he wanted whilst shrouded in shadow.  There was also the striking visuals that went along with it, Jackie in his full blown Darkness armour, all of his cosplayer Darklings which all had a crude, detestable sense of humour which really appealed to me.

Then the Top Cow rebirth happened after the first major arc of Artifacts.  Then they brought David Hine and Jeremy Haun in.  Now I’d like to point out that Jeremy Haun’s artwork is really, really good throughout, but it seemed to me from conversations with Hine that Haun was the reason it ran late every single month.  The book totally lost the ability to keep to schedule, meaning that when a book finally landed you’d have no clue what happened in the last one.  This can be an issue with Top Cow in general, especially recently, but my god, two months between issue #115 and #116?  Really?  It’s at this point, I’m afraid, where we as readers just lose interest.

That is, of course, if you weren’t there already.  Under David Hine, the book lost it’s character completely.  It became a shadow of it’s former self, becoming almost self absorbed in being weird for the sake of being weird.  I tried to convince myself all the way through this sixteen issue run that I was still enjoying it, solely because it was the Darkness, and I really wanted it to be good.  I really, really wanted to enjoy it.  But you know what?  I’ve gone back and reread it recently, and it doesn’t hold up to the previous 100 issues that preceeded it.

My personal opinion at this point, and I’m sure it’s shared by many, is that the reason this series has ended (not that we’ve had the definitive ending yet either for bloody hell’s sake!) is because David Hine wrote himself into a corner, making Jackie screw too many things up in short succession.  When I asked him at a convention what plans were coming after the rather underwhelming “Progeny” crossover, he simply stated “I can’t say much, except that I’m not done f*cking with Jackie yet”.  That seemed to be the whole problem with this, he spent too much time trying to make it a weird and “out there” series while constantly screwing over the main character.  And it ruined it.  So congratulations, there is a comic I used to genuinely love, which I know dislike.  Don’t get me wrong, the old stuff is still good, but I don’t know when I’ll be able to go back to it now thanks to the newer stuff.

And I tell you what, I feel a lot better for getting all of that out.

Thanks for stopping by and checking out today’s edition of 31 days of comics, be sure to drop by tomorrow for what should turn out to be an interesting twenty second challenge.


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