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About Digital Art / Hobbyist Member Blazej SzpakowiczMale/Canada Recent Activity
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So: I recently sent DC Comics a somewhat, er, lengthy note outlining my current dissatisfaction (to put it mildly) with their product. I've semi-randomly decided I should post it to the Interwebz somewhere, and since I don't have a proper blog, I figured it'd have to be here. I've edited it a bit for length. If anyone actually reads this (ha! like that'll happen) and is curious to see the whole thing, drop me a line.

I am no longer buying DC comics.

There are several reasons for this. In part, I'm unhappy with DC's creative direction. I was not happy with the loss of the marriage of Clark Kent and Lois Lane, or with the downplaying of Lois' importance to the Superman mythos. Lois is Clark's equal, every bit as smart and heroic and psychologically strong. She is not and never was an impediment or a 'trophy wife'. I was not happy the brutal injury of Bette Kane to provide angst and motivation for the heroine in the otherwise fine Batwoman title (a case of 'women in refrigerators'). I was not happy with the off-hand and off-panel killing of Helena Bertinelli in favour of bringing back her pre-crisis equivalent, Helena Wayne -- an entirely different character with a different personality and history. I was deeply unhappy with the treatment of Barbara Gordon, formerly one of my favourite characters as Oracle but now degenerated from a strong, capable, independent woman and one of the smartest and strongest characters in the DC Universe to a young, inexperienced, borderline incompetent little girl. I disliked the decision to cure Barbara's paralysis and again make her Batgirl, but I could have enjoyed the new direction if she had maintained her skills and activities as Oracle while also going back into the field; instead, she has regressed. Worse, she is so relentlessly overexposed that I'm starting to sour on her, something I never would have expected.

But the main reason why I have stopped buying DC comics is the treatment of those characters not yet used or even alluded to in the reboot. I can understand that not every character can be used at once, of course, and that DC does not want to reveal future plans. But rumours abound that two of my favourite DC characters, former Batgirls Cassandra Cain and Stephanie Brown are "toxic". Steph was even announced as appearing in an out-of-continuity Smallville comic before she was swiftly removed and replaced by the already omnipresent Barbara Gordon. I am unclear why there is no room for her (or Cass, or the others) in the New 52. I can understand that her sales do not warrant a solo title, but I would think fan support for her sufficient to justify adding her to a team book or building a new one around her. Such characters as Zatanna and Booster Gold got that opportunity in the reboot, despite their pre-boot solo books having sales no better than Steph's. In any case, I would have bought Smallville had it featured Steph. Now I will not. I would like to be able to reject the idea that DC's editorial staff has some sort of irrational vendetta against some of my favourite characters and/or their fans, but that is becoming increasingly difficult.

This mean-spirited twisting of the knife is the straw that broke the camel's back for me. Stephanie Brown is my favourite character. Having her return dangled in front of me and then ripped away has made me stop buying DC comics. This is not to say that I'm boycotting your output to send a message. I've simply lost interest. I did buy the next few weeks' worth of your comics, but I found I couldn't read them without being reminded of Steph (and Cass, and Renee, and Lois, and the rest). It had stopped being fun. I've realised that a DC Universe without these characters, or with them twisted out of all recognition (at least to me) does not interest me.

And it's the treatment of Stephanie Brown that rankles the most. I firmly believe she is one of the best and strongest characters DC has. She's fun, and likeable, and sympathetic, and strong, and easy to look up to and to identify with. She was a rare beacon of light in the dark world of Gotham City. Even better, she's the one who never got any respect, who was told she was not good enough, that she didn't have what it took, that she should leave it to the professionals. Can't many of us identify with that? But she didn't give up, not even when she nearly died. She always kept fighting and improving, until through hard work and sheer force of will, she became a hero. She is not only a great character, but a great role model, especially for young girls (a demographic sadly under-represented in comics). The DC Universe is a far, far poorer place without her.

I have not bought new comics from DC since late July and do not expect this to change. I have, however, bought a digital copy of one your old comics. Just the other day, in fact, when the Smallville Batman storyline debuted. That comic was Batgirl (2009) #1, the debut of Stephanie Brown as Batgirl -- a comic I already own both as a single issue and as a trade paperback. Just saying.


bszpak's Profile Picture
Blazej Szpakowicz
Artist | Hobbyist | Digital Art
I was born in Poland, raised in Canada, and recently completed a PhD in History at the University of Cambridge. So I guess I'm very cosmopolitan.

I've been creating digital art for over a decade, and drawing for over two. I like to think I'm pretty good at the former and (at best) reasonably acceptable at the latter. I would dabble in writing as well, had I the time and energy. I'm mostly a comic book fan artist; I've done some originals, but this is mostly a hobby and a way to pay tribute to the series and characters I love. I started as a photomanipulator and that's still my strength, but I have also since done some 3D, some pencilling, some digital inking and colouring... the lot. I sketch occasionally but rarely find it good enough to be worth posting. Most of what I have posted to dA is mixed media, primarily photomanipulated 3D renders with many digitally painted elements. If you enjoy them, please let me know. Like many artists, I am tremendously insecure at heart and thus crave faves and comments. ;)

For more art (notably photomanipulations that do not meet dA's guidelines), visit my account at HeroMorph:…

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redtrujillo Feb 8, 2013  Student General Artist
thanks so much for the faves :)
Thank you very much for the favourite of my Steph and Batman pic
Responding of this year august 25, 2012 LETTER that you wrote in your journal about writing to DC comics about starting a new 52 era after FLASHPOINT. I ageed with you whole hearted about what they did with it. I HATE IT! I STOP BUYING THEIR BOOKS PERIOD. THEY DESTROYED EVERYTHING WITH THIS NEW 52 CRAMP!
deviantART muro drawing Comment Drawing
Glad to find u here!
bszpak Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Chowy, hi! I'm glad you found me -- we HMers gotta stick together! ;-)
hisstorymn Dec 5, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for the watch!
bszpak Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hey, us HMers gotta stick together! ;-)
gardawamtu Oct 4, 2012  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Thanks for the fave!
Thorbeastwolvie Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
"P.S. :iconsuperderpplz:
Thorbeastwolvie Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hi! I'm the founder of "the silver surfer club" thanks for visiting us!!! hope you join, great work on your newest deviation!
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