Sword Of Vengeance
In comics, there are always characters that get forgotten too soon. We’ve all seen them, characters that make a big splash at first, or even get their own series for a while, only to then be forgotten and abandoned. For every Hellboy, Damien Wayne, or Invincible, there are 5 Simon Darks, Astounding Wolf-mans, or Spider-girls. Hell, even Batgirl has had 3 variations in the past five years!
In this day and age, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for creators and companies to create new properties with lasting appeal. It seems like just yesterday I was gushing over The Umbrella Academy, anxiously awaiting each new issue. But where is my Gerard Way penned series now? While I completely understand the difficulties of writing a comic series on top of a grueling touring schedule, at the same time, it strikes me as odd that there was never any attempt to kept the series going, especially since it was hit critically and commercially.
But I digress; this is more about heroes than series. The comic book landscape is littered with the corpses of “B-list” heroes. However, there seems to be a strange resurgence coming around the bend. Marvel’s restarted a Scarlet Spider book, and while it’s not Ben Reilly under the mask, I’ve heard nothing but positive things about it. Hopefully this kick starts a trend to bring back some other semi-popular heroes and villains into the fold, and there’s one I would love to see make a comeback:
Now I’m talking the original, St. Dumas hallucinating, unhinged vigilante known as Jean-Paul Valley, not the lame Michael Lane that we saw back when “Battle For The Cowl” was underway. Sure, JPV was killed at the end of his series, and was last seen as a zombie in Blackest Night, but with the DC New 52, a little thing like death is nothing. The DC relaunch would be a fantastic way to re-introduce Valley, and since “Knightfall” still counts, you could have Bruce Wayne still not completely trust him. The post-“Knightfall” dynamic between those two was phenomenal, and there’s a lot of potential in their relationship, even if Jason Todd is currently filling the “prodigal son” role of the Bat-family.
With every tease of a new batch of DC books, I constantly wait for one character to come back. While this most recent announcement didn’t include the Agent Of The Bat, there has to be another reason for DC to commission new editions of the Knightfall trades (other than the fact that Bane is the villain in The Dark Knight Rises). Mark my words, we will start seeing some new Azrael collections in a few years, which will hopefully lead to DC giving me what I want: Azrael swinging his fire sword, kicking ass and taking names again. I’ll even write it. For free!