I used to have an irrational disdain for DC superheroes as a child. I was a “Marvel kid.” Sure, I loved Batman, but outside of his adventures I turned up my nose at DC fare. The echoes of my own irrationality reverberated into the future as I stuck to reading The Amazing Spider-Man, Captain America, and then occasional X-Men book as an adult. But somewhere along the line, Marvel decided to adopt a business model that needlessly alienates long-term readers. That, my friends, is where our discussion on DC’s The Button comes in.

Marvel Editor-in-chief Axel Alonso and everyone who takes their marching orders from him would be wise to look at what DC is doing under the watchful eyes of Geoff Johns. DC Rebirth was a creative home run, and now it seems as if the same can be said of The Button.

Check out my latest YouTube review on parts 1-3 of The Button, which is a great blueprint for Marvel to follow if it wants to win back fans. And, as always, I’m interested in hearing your feedback in the comments section below.

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About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

12 comments

  1. Oddly I have always preferred DC’s hero’s to Marvel’s (really only love Daredevil and Hulk), but preferred Marvel’s world and story telling. That all changed at Civil War and I drifted towards DC. It has gone so far that I have a complete Marvel ban in place since 2010. I won’t even buy TPB or digital. I’ll only read old (really 1980’s to 2004ish) Marvel books by collecting them on the secondary market (so Marvel gets none of my money).

    Batman is on my pull list, and because of how good issue 21 was, I bought my first Flash comic since Flash 34 in 1990. The crossover has been very good, as have their other crossovers. Justice League vs Suicide Squad was also a very good cross over that was a 6 issue mini series, but both individual comics contributed 2 issues of tie-in material. Titans/Teen Titans/Deathstroke are doing a crossover right now as well with the Lazarus Contract, which ties the New 52/Rebirth into the old Judas Contract from the 80’s.

    Basically DC Rebirth has been killing it. My current pull list (all of which I highly recommend) is; All-Star Batman, Aquaman, Batman, Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps, Suicide Squad, Super Sons, Teen Titans, & Titans. I was also getting Deathstroke, Justice League, Justice League of America, and Wonder Woman, which were all good but I needed to cut back on the bi-monthly series I was getting. If they went back to monthly I would probably add Deathstroke and Wonder Woman back in.

    1. “Basically DC Rebirth has been killing it. My current pull list (all of which I highly recommend) is; All-Star Batman, Aquaman, Batman, Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps, Suicide Squad, Super Sons, Teen Titans, & Titans.”

      Thanks, man! Super Sons is on my pull list along with Batman. I’ve been a bit lazy when it comes to reviewing (and reading) my Batman comics. I’ll probably sit down this weekend and knock them all out. My plan is to drop Iron Man (aka Iron Riri) and another Marvel book and replace them with Superman and perhaps Flash.

  2. First things first… *sniff* those pages with the two Bats (father and son) are a sight for sore eyes.

    Anyway, glad to see you’re doing more DC reviews, Doug. It’s almost amazing how the Rebirth line practically embodies the old spirit of Marvel back when they were still deserving of the title “House of Ideas”. These heroes may be flawed, but nowhere near the facepalm-y levels that All-New’s horrible cast keep sinking into around every corner. And the best part is — they’re actually COMPETENT in their line of work — as every superhero worth his or her salt should be. It’s really telling how lost Marvel has become since the glory days, how they’ve forgotten every basic rule in writing a compelling story… while DC has rediscovered theirs, ironically as a direct result of studying their (failing) competition.

    1. “It’s really telling how lost Marvel has become since the glory days, how they’ve forgotten every basic rule in writing a compelling story… while DC has rediscovered theirs, ironically as a direct result of studying their (failing) competition.”

      Well said, Tristan. DC seemed to do some honest reflection when it had problems with New 52. Marvel? Not so much… They’re being dragged kicking and screaming to do Legacy. That’s not a good sign.

  3. I hope you get a chance to pick up Superman this week as well Doug…it’s quite astounding how DC will have Lois apparently continue to prioritize her faith in her husband above losing something vital to her everday functions (won’t say what) while at Marvel all they keep doing is have Mephistoverse MJ talk have regrets about landing on her toushie in scrapes…all while her superior and spidey-loving newspaper counterpart just got off saving the planet from a Kree Sentry,.

    Kind of went off topic a bit there…but since The Button’s conclusion has something to do with the man of steel, I figured his recent exploits were worth bringing up.

    1. “Welcome to the dark side. 😉 let me know if you ever want to do a chat on DC.”

      Thanks for the offer, man! I may take you up on it. You have a ton more knowledge when it comes to DC stuff than I do.

  4. Hey Douglas,

    I am really encouraged how you are using your platform to relay truth. Continue to persevere and be a light. I am curious to know how a conservative like yourself works for the Washington Post. The only answer that comes to mind is favor of God. So I was actually glad you reviewed something from DC because since I have been following your page on Youtube all I saw was Marvel. I grew up on Marvel loving Spiderman and then during New 52 i took a turn. Probably because of Dan Slott. I was thinking back to the last time Marvel actually wrote something that tugged at my heart strings like this story did. I dont remember. Oh yeah it is when Dan Slott killed off Peter Parker but it was mostly anger. I was very skeptical about Tom King I knew he did a great job with Grayson. I mean I read the entire Scott Snyder run and it is a masterpiece. I have to say Tom King really stayed true to Batman but made it his own. It was not a copy and paste. Right now I really wish Marvel took a step back and re evaluated things. The comics are too expensive, it seems like a comic run wont hit #50 before they start over again with another issue #1. I just want story telling like I see in the button but I might be asking too much. Rebirth was a complete change not only with continuity, but it was a service to the customer. They brought down comic prices to 2.99, continuity was across every comic, the old stuff we loved in DC was brought back (Lois and Clark, Titans etc). They took the characters that we know and love and went back to the fundamentals. I am glad that I have DC because if not then I would not even bother with comics anymore. God bless man would love to hear your thoughts.

    1. “I am really encouraged how you are using your platform to relay truth. Continue to persevere and be a light. I am curious to know how a conservative like yourself works for the Washington Post.”

      Thanks for reading, Thomas! The short answer is that I don’t work for The Washington Post. Haha! I work for the city’s editorially conservative alternative, The Washington times. 🙂 I suppose the route to the Post would have been doable many years ago when I first moved to D.C., but went a different direction. I went to graduate school in the capital, and then from there I interned for my congressman, interned for The Heritage Foundation, eventually got a job there, and then moved over to TWT. I’m always happy to discuss professional stuff if you have any questions.

      Regarding comics, I have the same policy. Anything you want to know, ask away and I’ll do my best to answer.

    1. “What are your thoughts about Generations and Legacy? I don’t know too much about it.”

      I heard Generations involves time-travel related stories that mash-up the old heroes and the new kids, which seems lame to me. The reason why is this: Marvel has spit on the classic characters for years. It wants to put them on the shelf and let the dust build up. We’re now supposed to believe that they will do these team-ups justice? I’m skeptical.

      Legacy is the same situation. They had to be dragged kicking and screaming to do it. It’s a reaction to sluggish sales, but the problem is that Marvel still hasn’t come to terms with the reasons why people are walking away. The VP of sales tried to say that fans just don’t like “diversity” and female characters. That’s a total distortion of what’s going on. People don’t like ham-fisted political messages in their books, and they don’t like zero-sum approaches to diversity (i.e., if Thor is a man, then somehow that is a creative slight against women…so we must make She-Thor).

      I’m not optimistic that Marvel can really turn this around until they get rid of Axel Alonso and a number of other editors. Marvel’s current business model is this: “Let’s see how many fans we can needlessly alienate.” It isn’t working, and yet the people responsible are not being taken to task.

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