Appropriate changes for an appropriate view
October 29, 2013
By Avi Green
I wish I’d brought this up earlier, but people who build fansites
are as busy with other jobs and such as everyone else. And
ultimately, our real lives are what have to take some priority.
When I first built this site, I initially thought to feature
material relating not just to the old, but also to the cast members
appearing in the new Outsiders series that debuted in 2003. Yes, the
one that spun out of Titans/Young Justice: Graduation Day, one of
the flat-out worst miniseries DC ever published since Dan DiDio got
his foot in the door, thanks to a conglomerate that doesn’t value
good storytelling or respect for the characters in their stables.
The series written by Judd Winick built itself on some of the most
illegitimate, degrading premises ever seen in modern comics: the
deaths of Donna Troy and Lilith Clay (Omen), and not even at the
hands of a real threat. Rather, it was at the hands of a Superman
robo-clone. Since then, Brad Meltzer’s repugnant Identity Crisis
took this very unchallenging idea and ran it deeper into the ground,
in the most offensive ways possible.
That aside, the newer Outsiders series had some material in it that
was pretty distasteful, like wretched sex jokes, vulgar violence,
and even limp moments where Jade thought “I should be leader!” that
made her sound like an idiot while Nightwing acted all but
One of the cast members introduced then was Thunder/Anissa Pierce,
supposedly the daughter of Black Lightning. But over the years, when
I pondered how Jeff Pierce’s creator Tony Isabella highly
disapproved of how this was done, which did contradict the original
premise for Black Lightning, I decided finally that it was better
not to include newer characters like that, and finally, I made the
decision: I would expunge all cast members data from the series
debuting in 2003 from this site, and while I am a big fan of Jade, I
cannot and will not present information here in ways that pertains
to the Winick-penned series. I began to slowly phase out that
material in early 2012, removing pictures from the special section
for them coming from the Winick series for starters, and even a few
cast members like Indigo, who turned out to be crooks anyway (it
sure didn’t seem like he knew what to do with them regardless). And
the duplicate of Metamorpho called “Shift”? He was absorbed back
into Rex Mason’s body…after killing more than 40 people during a
battle with the warden of the Iron Heights prison in Keystone City.
I think it’s pretty apparent that a grave disservice was done to Rex
by having him reclaim an entity that was potentially guilty of
killing innocent people. At worst, it’s stupefying.
Since the “New 52” reboot of the DCU, a lot of the original cast for
the Outsiders has been rendered unrecognizable. Looker, for example,
was turned into more of a vampire, and Katana has been changed to a
shadow of her former self. It’s very sad.
And with those kind of setups, it’s no wonder I couldn’t appreciate
even a better writer like Chuck Dixon taking over the writing for
another volume later on, though I will say I was very disgusted when
Dan DiDio just up and ostracized him out of the blue, apparently
because Dixon represents all that DiDio depises. The writer who
succeeded him, Peter Tomasi, wasn’t any good at all.
In the end, what matters is that I decided I wasn’t going to build
this site for the purpose of representing DC the way DiDio wants it
to be. And that’s why, as of now, I since discarded all the pages
I’d written up relating to the cast members of the newer takes, and
just devoted it to the older ones.
And I think that’s good, because the original series of the
Outsiders had something that many modern comic book writers have
thrown away: fun, optimism and escapism. Why must I sully this site
with newer nonsense that doesn’t do the older series any justice?
Speaking of which, a lot of the older series is still mostly
unavailable in paperback collections, unlike the newer one, which is
– or was – in the past decade, though it’s probably since gone out
of print. That’s just as well, because Winick’s rendition was
nothing to write home about, and definitely not something to waste
money on. But it’s very sad that to date, the only real archive
collection for the original Outsiders is a Showcase edition in black
and white, when it decidedly works better in color.
Still, I hold hope that one day, the true Outsiders will receive the
justice they deserve by getting all stories published in trade
paperbacks, and to be sure, that’s one of the reasons for this
And so, as made clear before, this site from hereon is dedicated
only to the original Outsiders and the characterizations that made
them what they are. Any material here that could pertain to Winick
and Tomasi’s newer renditions will be brought up only as part of an
editorial I could write. In fact, any material here that relates to
characters like Jade, Nightwing, Starfire and Arsenal will only be
brought up the same way as the original Outsiders would, unless it’s
to make a point about how awful the Winick/Tomasi mess truly is.
There has to come a time when you draw the line, and that’s what I
did in early 2012. And I’m glad. I can’t support the DiDio regime’s
So let’s just enjoy the true Outsiders for what they were in their
time, and not newer material from a time when editors destroyed the
DCU with Identity Crisis. Sites like mine should be devoted to
promoting real enjoyment, not some politically correct fiasco like
what we see today.
Copyright 2013 Avi Green. All rights reserved.
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