A Facebook page has sprung up to organize a protest march against the new awful designs of the new 52. It seems some folks don’t like the new fresh DC designs that are all new:

Are you utterly baffled, disappointed and just ANGRY to see how DC ruins your favorite character’s design and wipes decades of comic history out of the mainstream universe? Well, you’re not alone!
And why not make some noise at the biggest pop-culture event this year, where creators, artists and writers appear in person – show them how fans – the fans of the classic characters, the (nevertheless slightly changing) designs, the character’s history and personality – really feel about it!

Thus far 223 people have RSVP’d for the walk, which will take place Saturday, July 23 from 2-3pm near the convention center. Commenters seem split on whether this is a necessary action to show that the people must be heard, or a sad example of people who just can’t let go of a fantasy that belongs to everyone:
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Wherever you stand, the idea of a DCnÜ protest march is pretty wild.


  1. What I love…is the belief that DC (or any company) ever cares what you think…

    DC is going to make decisions according to the bottom line…if Batman sells more issues with him as a mime, you can bet that he’ll be a mime…

    Fans expect athletes, artists etc..etc…to care about the product the way they do, but fail to understand that comics are exactly the same as cans of coke, diapers or widgets…profitability matters and DC is going to make decisions with that in mind.

    Either accept it or don’t…but whining is pointless.

  2. From a reader’s perspective, doesn’t emphasizing redesigned costumes also emphasize how shallow the characters are? An analogy would be reacting to soap opera fans’ complaints about storylines and falling ratings by announcing that parts were going to be recast, and there would be some tinkering with some characters’ plotlines, but everything else would be the same. The favorable impact of a new costume will last perhaps ten seconds. A negative impact might cost the publisher a customer.


  3. Am I the only one who thinks using the “Burghers of Calais” here for the image is just hillarious?

    Really, people. Get past the argument you can’t change and embrace the idea of dealing with the envitable humorously. The only person who ever got famous from this kind of martyrdom/protest was Rodin. No one remembers who any of the friggin’ Burghers were.

  4. Eh. Save yourself time and money and just don’t buy any of the damn DC relaunch books. Show them with your wallet and by saving some cash too. If you want to spend cash, go pick up some Image or Dark Horse instead if you really want the industry to progress. End the two party dominance of the system.

  5. I think that it’s GOOD that some will make their disappointment known. Will it change anything? I highly doubt it. But not everyone is onboard with this… and DC should know about it. In the past, DC has said that they “listen” to people at cons… so I wish them luck in staging their “protest.”

  6. Exactly — when is the last time people staged a protest over FICTIONAL CHARACTERS, much less SUPERHEROES that was positive? This is the very definition of meta-awesome. This will definitely be on the San Diego evening news with Flip Spicelander or something. Now will DC organize a response “Up with Newness!” sit-in? I hope these protestors get a good spokesperson and start doing some PR. If they can get Warren Eliis to lead them at the top of some golden sphinx, then forget about it.

  7. And every last one of the protesters will be at his local comic shop on September 7 to pick up a stack of the new DC titles.

  8. If you don’t like the stuff they do… don’t buy it. I stopped buying Detective Comics after I read the last page to the new issue (878) and had to tap out of this garbage they do once again. As of right now, I buy nothing from them. That’s the only way to care about any message.

  9. i’m not happy with the move dc is making, but i won’t be out pounding the pavement in protest, instead i’ll be showing my disappointment with my wallet, by not picking up a single DC book in the foreseeable future. if enough folks do this maybe dc will get a clue about the fan’s dissatisfaction with their current direction. then again, maybe they won’t. it really is a gamble for DC. will they piss off enough current fans ( who will not buy the books ) that it will hurt the bottom line, or will they attract enough new readers to make this relaunch a success? if this gamble fails, man, the brown stuff hitting the fan will be flying in all directions. if it’s a success, johns, lee, etc. will be the heroes of the super hero comic world. place your bets.

  10. Blah blah blah. People bitch about everything. And it seems bitching about other people’s bitching is one of the most popular ways to bitch.

    I haven’t been reading all the hubbub about the DCnU, so forgive me if you’ve heard this before. 70 years ago comics filled a void; A vacuum with no kid-focused entertainment. Today there is no void. Kids (and more importantly, adults) are overwhelmed with entertainment choices. Most of which are “free.” Which means that despite the standard civilian’s personal relationship with that stack of Archies in their basement, they aren’t running out in droves to buy (or download) a $4 pamphlet (let alone a stack).

    As jaded Alex said, whatever sells is what DC is going to produce. But because its 2011, not 1941, there’s no void to fill and its unlikely that DC will catch lightning in a bottle, this project of relaunching with all new titles is sure to fail at the stated goal of bringing in new readers. I sincerely wish them luck and will no-doubt pick up a few titles, but I really think this just makes them look (rightfully) desperate. Maybe DCE’s new management gave an ultimatum to the funnybook division, start growing the business or lose your deep pocket funding. This need for growth is especially obvious with the success of Green Lantern at the box office. Why does the entertainment group need to support a flailing print division if they already own the characters?

    IMO, if DC really wanted to take the market by storm, they would put out a really great quality product and produce it on the cheapest crappiest paperstock they can find. I’m talking 1970’s style paper pulp. And sell it for a buck or $1.50. They will increase circulation 10 fold. Again, newbies aren’t running out to buy a $4.00 twenty-two page pamphlet, regardless of how fancy the paper quality. I think the uphill battle isn’t about “accessible” or “fresh” heroes. Again, it’s fighting for the entertainment dollars.

    Just one fat guy’s opinion.

  11. These discussions often come around to paper, and price. I agree that the price/perceived value ratio of a typical monthly comic book is a problem, but changing paper stock won’t fix that.

    The cost of the paper is a small percentage of the cost of those monthly comics. Switching to newsprint wouldn’t do more than shave a few pennies off the retail price of a typical book.

  12. Jim O. darn. Okay, I’m out of ideas.

    Although, maybe not. Years ago, I was at a Motor City show in Chicago and I remember an interesting panel with Simpsons Comics guy Bill Morrison. What stuck with me was a comment he made about the circulation here versus in Germany. (its a long time ago so the numbers are just recollections) He said here in the United States they sold something like 60,000 units on an average month. In Germany, they sold upwards of 200,000 units per month. The reason for the huge difference, he postulated, was that every week at the end of the tv show, they would air a commercial for the comic book. I dont know if 200,000 copies is enough to justify a full commercial and who knows if Fox would allow The Simpsons to sell someone else’s products on their show (even in the closing credits) but its interesting. Food for thought.

  13. Consider that if there weren’t fans who felt that strongly about the comics, neither DC nor Marvel would exist as publishers now. Their marketing strategies for more than ten years have relied on fanaticism for weekly purchases, discussing comics on message boards, etc.

    If not for the fanatical fans, people would see the heroes on cartoons, kids’ clothing, and on little else. The comics’ value as entertainment isn’t enough to sustain them.


  14. Maybe I’m just happy with my life, but I don’t mind the re-vamp at all…I’ll still be collecting my favorite characters despite any changes, and I kinda like some of the new looks……

    I think it somewhat sad that the protest at the comic con has really nothing to do with fans displeasure in the changes to characters they may love, but rather is just an excuse to try and be noticed. They will be loud and whiny and try and disrupt others’ experience at Comic Con…..I’m sure the Marvel fans or someone there for a movie launch, autograph signing, etc. is just going to sigh and feel sorry for the losers protesting something that doesn’t matter in life.

    If they really want to protest, they should join PETA (like me!), or a political group, or environmental cause, etc. THINGS THAT MATTER! But a Comic’s new direction and an artist’s new rendering? Please.

  15. “If they really want to protest, they should join PETA (like me!), or a political group, or environmental cause, etc. THINGS THAT MATTER! But a Comic’s new direction and an artist’s new rendering? Please.”

    I’ll take geeks protesting the NewDC over any of those that you mentioned. Mainly because they’re a small chance that DC will actually listen to the protesters while the other 3 have 3 change of changing anything.

  16. How about if everyone just kind of–and I know this is a CRAZY IDEA–waits until some of the comics are actually out? Maybe they’ll be good! Maybe they’ll suck. But right now we don’t know, do we?

  17. The complaints might carry more weight if there was any chance that more than 1% of the complainers might actually buy fewer DC books.

  18. “Get past the argument you can’t change and embrace the idea of dealing with the inevitable humorously.”

    Actually, this protest idea is more fun than any of the 52 DCNu books will be by a long shot.

    “The complaints might carry more weight if there was any chance that more than 1% of the complainers might actually buy fewer DC books.”

    Maybe they will; but of course, you don’t know the results either way.

  19. Sounds fun, good for them.

    And as always anyone who calls someone else and geek on a comic book message board and writes about how someone else is wasting their time is in danger of death by irony.

  20. I joined the page a few days ago, because it just seemed like good fun, to me. Then I got this letter in my FB notifications:

    “If you don’t like it, leave.
    Okay, that’s IT!

    I really like to argue for what I think is right, and when people have different opinions, I am happy to debate with them and have a normal, non-violent conversation.
    But what I suddenly see is a group of guys openly insulting and harassing other fans. I bet not even half of you people would talk to complete strangers like that, let alone other fans.
    If you’re not interested in what we’re doing and in fact hate it, then why did you join in the first place?
    Because you like being an internet bully? Well done, really.
    I don’t know what you think you achieve except for sounding pathetic and acting like a little child, but you surely do not accommplish anything.
    And if you people furthermore mob, insult, or spam in my group, I will not only delete and block, but report you for your antisocial behaviour.

    Once again – nobody forces you to be in this group or listen to the member’s opinions. If you don’t agree or feel the need to act violent, seek help. For you certainly do have problems.

    Thank you.”

  21. Fanboys mocking fanboys protesting at the Nerd Event of the Year?

    Reactionary posturing in the Comments by the self-identified as being ‘not as bad as those losers’?

    The Comicsratti a-TWITTER about all this?

    It’s quite fascinating to watch this tempest-in-an-inkpot i-controversy unfold as declining AND aging readership… the diminished viabilty of LCS’es… the rise of e-media at the expense of print… and corporate belt-tightening in an ongoing recession ALL continue to beset the Comics World. This DCnU re-numbering/reboot protest “controversy” sure is a welcome distraction from all the above, ain’t it?

    /glad I’ve moved on from Superhero Comics YEARS ago

  22. I am outraged! Outraged, I tells ya! I am so outraged! Did I mention how outraged I am? Pretty darn outraged!

  23. The protest against DC is ridonkulous. Anyone participating is a comic elitist. The kinda person who collects all the variant covers but never actually reads the comic. the DcnU will revolutionize the industry. Marvel is already following suit w/ the X-Men reboots.

  24. Jimmy Palmiotti’s book is new and part of the DC relaunch! It will probably even be a #1!

    I resolutely protest the relaunch of … um, which book are you doing again, Jimmy?

  25. I am protesting by not buying any DC Comic books!!!!

    Actually I haven’t bought any since Zero Hour. Wait, I think I bought DC ONE MILLION. Then I was done.

    Honestly, this doesn’t sound like innovation or anything of the sort – it sounds like DC desperately trying to improve sales short term thru another stunt.

    They should have just started telling good stories for a change.

  26. Wow. Most people just change their Facebook profile to show their support for a certain cause.

    These people will be marching in the streets! I hope the San Diego Police Department is prepared! This could be another Seattle!

    Who knows? Maybe this, like Seattle, will encourage a new media organization which will agitate for good storytelling and the integrity of continuity! No more will shows “jump the shark” with gimmicky plot points and “sweeps weeks” chicanery! Gone will be the “very special episode”! The Vast Wasteland will once again bloom with verdant ideas as the air is perfumed with creativity!

    Ah… who am I kidding? Everyone will be inside, in line for Hall H or trying to get the latest freebie or Con exclusive. There will probably be more people rubber-necking than actually protesting.

  27. Just stopping one’s purchase of one series, or several, doesn’t send a coherent message to the publisher. They won’t know what the specific reasons are for the loss of business unless they’re told.

    Movie studios don’t have that problem. There are independent reviewers, CinemaScore-type ratings, market research tools, test screenings, etc. However a movie performs, the studio is supplied with reasons why.

    In the superhero comics market, there are no authoritative reviewers that I’m aware of, no one who can even noticeably affect sales with a killer review. Perhaps that’s because if the stories were held to the same standards that genre fiction stories were, many of them would be condemned — but an absence of standards isn’t a solution for anything..

    In the absence of storytelling standards, a protest is one of the few means of showing that you actually take standards seriously.


  28. I think DC should release this statement,

    -any apparent continuity errors in her show are actually the actions of “a wizard”.

  29. The best protest is a silent choice not to buy the material you don’t find interesting.

    At least in September, DC will lose two thirds of my money. We’ll see what happens come October.

  30. I like that they are making it “52” new titles. Keep invoking 52. 52 was the best things comics have pulled off in forever. My guess is this will be a hamfisted attempt to save an inevitably dying operation,
    but… it’s funny that they know they did something great a few years ago. Even if, you know… on balance, it didn’t grow their audience one iota.

    The irony here is that a major part of what was great about 52 is that it reached back into the character vault. This 52 is all about wiping all that away. Of course, they will still have that history to inspire them, but they will only sorta have it.

  31. What a lot of people don’t seem to realize is that DC’s characters are brands, and core customers of a brand expect the brand to retain certain characteristics.

    An example I like to cite is the venerable Twinkie. When a core Twinkie customer goes to the store to buy one, they expect a light, fluffy, oblong-shaped, yellowish spongecake with a creme-filled center that has a certain sweet taste.

    If you take away the creme, the shape, the sweet taste, the color, or the texture, you no longer have a Twinkie. You have some other product.

    So if you opt making arbitrary and fundamental changes to a stable and mature product like the Twinkie, you risk alienating a portion — perhaps a BIG portion — or your core customer.

    Sometimes, product changes are necessary because of changes in technology, sociological habits, costs, or other factors. But every change involves risks, and to arbitrarily make massive changes to a company’s entire line of brands — all in an effort to make what, realistically, will probably be a short-term marketing noise bump — is an incalcuable gamble for DC.

    For the sake of DC, and the industry in general, I sure hope this marketing gimmick does not backfire in their faces.

  32. R. Maheras, if the product is slowly and consistently losing marketshare, sometimes drastic risks are necessary.

    I think a recent example of this sort of core product change that involved a huge business risk is Domino’s pizza changing their pizza. Everyone knew the old product was horrible (I’m a little biased as I live in Chicago) so they threw out the entire old and replaced it with a much better new. The big question is whether the fans of the old domino’s were turned off by the new product. But either way, they clearly improved their numbers by bringing in lots of new customers. Then again, domino’s operates in a very open market–everyone eats. The entertainment options today are infinite and I’d be curious to know just how tiny the percentage is for people who choose reading (and reading comics) over watching television, spending time online or playing video games.

  33. Rupert G. wrote: “The entertainment options today are infinite and I’d be curious to know just how tiny the percentage is for people who choose reading (and reading comics) over watching television, spending time online or playing video games.”

    Well, as a comics artist and comics fan for more than 40 years, and a comics reader for about 50 years, I have to admit I spend a lot more time each month playing Xbox 360 than I do reading traditional comics.

    Video games today are far more enjoyable and immersive than anything I could have imagined when I first sat down to play “Pong” at a restaurant-bar in the mid-1970s.

    Recent video games like “Red Dead Redemption” (and it’s spin-off “Red Dead Redemption — Undead Nightmare), “L.A. Noire,” and “Dead Space 2,” are terrific and imaginative, and each have offered me dozens of hours of fun, excitement and challenge that no traditional comic book or film ever could.

    I still like to read comics, of course, but I have to admit I’m far less tolerant of comics industry folks who come in and make major changes to venerable characters that ignore the fundamental characteristics that made the brand successful in the first place.

    But instead of protesting stuff like the DC reboot, I’m just going to shrug my shoulders and go back to “Dead Space 2” and continue trying to complete it at the Zealot level. I really want to get awarded that gag “foam finger weapon” in the worst way…

  34. An example I like to cite is the venerable Twinkie. When a core Twinkie customer goes to the store to buy one, they expect a light, fluffy, oblong-shaped, yellowish spongecake with a creme-filled center that has a certain sweet taste.

    A convenience store manager told me a couple of weeks ago that if a Twinkie is pinned up to a bulletin board, it will stay there for years, unchanged, except for getting stiffer.

    What do you consider the limits to constructive change? As I see things, changes which make the character more complex and add more relationships only improve him and increase the number of story possibilities — but that assumes that readers are interested in his relationships. If readers consider added complexity “bad” because that makes stories more subtle and more abstract, then they’re limiting the range of possible stories pretty severely.


  35. Synsidar wrote: “What do you consider the limits to constructive change?”

    That’s the million-dollar question, isn’t it?

    In the case of comics, I’d say it depends on the character.

    If a character is heroic, I think the character should stay heroic. That doesn’t mean the character is free of weaknesses or character faults, but it does mean that the fundamental values the character should stay consistent.

    There are plenty of examples any long-time comics fan can cite where a character’s persona was twisted like a pretzel by subsequent writers until the resulting abomination looked and acted nothing like the original persona that made the character successful in the first place.

  36. While I agree that some of the new designs are pretty awful [Superman, for instance, is invulnerable, so why would he need body armour? Will that be explained? And why make the change before the movie comes out with the old costume?], some are pretty spiffy and some are almost untouched.

    What really matters is whether the writing is any good.

    Instead of rushing to judgment, try doing something really radical and actually reading the books before you protest – then you can actually make an informed judgment. Or would that be too difficult?

  37. I’ll flip through the New 52 at the LCS.
    I will be careful with the spines.

    Anything I really like, I will buy. Anything I don’t like, I will not buy.
    Hope that sounds fair.

  38. These guys kind of remind me of the logging industry workers protesting. Eventually they were going to lose their jobs, they must have known, that less trees were going to be cut down as time went on. Or any dying industry protesting its death.

    Likewise comic fans must have known that eventually, their characters were going to have to be reset every once in a while, either that or pass on their identities to a new generation. We’re talking about characters who told readers in the 40’s to ‘slap a Jap’ and ‘buy War bonds to support our troops against the krauts!’. If you love these characters you have to accept that their fictional universe needs to get scrubbed and repainted every few decades for them to make even the tiniest sense if you want new comics every month.

    Or alternatively you could stop reading pussy American comic characters and read a real mans comic like 2000AD’s Judge Dredd who’s been aging in real time since his creation. One of the reasons I love 2000 AD is they didn’t let themselves be ruled by the fans, they said these are the stories and up yours if you don’t like ’em, case in point the demise of Johnny Alpha in Strontium Dog many years ago. Fans went ape and begged to bring him back, other than a few ‘early adventure’ type stories, they never did. It makes DC and Marvel seem like cowards that they can’t let any meaningful character changes stick.

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