Tom King doesn’t understand heroism.
For a guy who wrote Batman for several years and has often been hailed as one of the greatest comic book writers of this generation, it’s shame that ideas like sacrifice, honor, and dedication don’t seem to exist to him. Much like how his Batman run failed to understand how noble Bruce Wayne’s sacrifice was to his father’s career as a doctor and philanthropist, this Strange Adventures series doesn’t understand how Adam Strange could hold any sense of honor and nobility while fighting a war against Pykkt invaders attempting to subjugate entire planets of free people.
The series began with a mystery surrounding the murder of a man who claimed that Adam Strange was war criminal and Strange pleading his innocence. After last issue’s apparent murder confession, this issue seems to pile on top more character assassination. Adam Strange is now apparently also the war criminal he was accused of being in the first place.
Dear Tom King,
These are the heroes. The normal people who makes these massive mistakes and have these massive flaws are not the people who become the iconic heroes of the DC Universe (or Marvel Universe if you prefer). There’s a reason that customers have been buying stories about these characters for decades. What makes these characters interesting is the fact that they make the right choices, they persevere, and succeed. Deconstructing a well known character into something that no longer resembles the original creation is not clever, smart, or entertaining. The only thing you prove by continually doing this is proving that you don’t know who these characters are to begin with.
Everyone who used to think you were cool.
I know that the DC Black Label was originally intended to be a place out of continuity stories, but with the death of the Vertigo line, Black Label is now the home for “mature reader” books as well. Plus, DC’s most recent push to say that “all stories matter” and that the DC Comics Omniverse makes every storyline part of the combined narrative, but I genuinely hope that this series is quickly forgotten and Tom King can return to writing stories of original characters that can be as broken as he wants them to be in the sands of the Iraqi desert, while leaving the larger than life heroes we’ve come to enjoy alone to continue to inspire and encourage us all to do better.