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YMMV / New 52

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  • Audience-Alienating Premise: The New 52's reset button smashing was this to many fans as it took away characters from both ends of the Legacy Character spectrum, no matter if they were old fogies like those on the Justice Society of America or new characters donning old names such as the Stephanie Brown Batgirl or Ryan Choi's version of The Atom and essentially saying everything that came before it never happened. It also didn't help that many storylines went heavy on the Darker and Edgier to the point where it didn't feel like there was anything worth cheering for.
  • Author's Saving Throw: Martian Manhunter told off his Stormwatch teammates for referring to him as a Justice League member, which is apparently shorthand for "established superhero", despite the fact that the Justice League has never had more than seven members (until JLI). So, any author wants to refer to, say, Metamorpho or Green Arrow as "Justice League heroes", that's what it refers to.
    • The Culling did not go over well at all, namely because of the many deaths (especially Artemis's), and the finale of Ravagers had them all recaptured. This trope goes into effect when the finale of the first run of Teen Titans reveals that all the teenagers killed in the Culling were revived and their powers taken away so they could be normal again (though the author was unable to get Ridge's real name right).
  • Broken Base: The reboot in general was very controversial when it was announced, and even years after it happened opinion was divided and discussions could get very heated about certain aspects of it. Overall, some fans consider it an interesting and fresh new take on the universe, while others consider it the return of some of the worst tropes from The Dark Age of Comic Books.
    • Superman and Wonder Woman as a couple, especially from the Clois fans and the Batman/Wonder Woman shippers. Those who like the relationship enough to at least give it a chance are now hating the brutal devolution it's getting in the most recent arcs of the Superman and Superman/Wonder Woman comics.
    • Lois Lane exposing Superman's secret identity on the "Lies" arc in order to try to create a Blackmail Backfire against an unknown blackmailer who hadn't even asked much of Superman yet, let alone endangered him. The trouble the fans and reviewers have is that obviously the blackmailer would eventually use Superman to perform some evil act and/or endanger him... the question is whether or not it was a good idea, and if it was a good idea then whether or not she was too impulsive in going for said solution ASAP. The arc then has Superman's relationship with everybody else (especially Lois and including Wonder Woman) souring up harshly (everybody else wants to help and doesn't mind, but Superman is on the quick track to superhero Cowboy Cop and insisting that "I Work Alone"), the United States Government taking everybody he loves into custody (because one man wanting to have a secret identity obviously means that those he worked alongside with on the Daily Planet must be members of his secret army wanting to conquer the world) and the Darker and Edgier piling up at a pace some people think is too hard and fast.
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    • Now that some of these fan favourites have been incorporated into the New 52, opinions are divided regarding how these characters have been handled and whether or not the changes made to their histories work.
    • Convergence: The possible rebirth of the pre-Flashpoint DC Universe, the possible last hurrah of the pre-Flashpoint DC Universe, or just one more possible Player Punch from DC to those who are vocal about wanting the clock to be turned back in order to make it understood that the New 52 is here to stay and they better deal with it? Doesn't really helps that it's being advertised as a "last universe standing" kind of Crisis Crossover event.
      • The results of Convergence: On one end, it undid Crisis on Infinite Earths and now all stories published by DC are canon someplace — they can be expanded upon in a future time. However, many liked Alternate Universe characters ended up coming Back for the Dead (some with more respect than others) and the stories were advertised as the Grand Finale of whichever arcs were left in the air before Flashpoint occurred, so maybe they will not be visited again in some time (if ever). On the other side of things, The Multiversity went ahead and completely restructured the DC multi-verse, with some universes and characters from that multiverse coming Back for the Dead also, and the story introducing an Eldritch Abomination that eats universes (and is still digesting the Pre-Flashpoint DC Universe), is the physical manifestation of the growing Real Life Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy in the comic book audience, and the story ends with it not being destroyed, but held back for the time being... which means that if someone comes along in the future and wishes to create their version of Crisis on Infinite Earths...
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  • Complete Monster: See DC Universe.
  • Continuity Lockout: With the near-constant Bat Family Crossover flow of the various Green Lantern comics from in the very least the beginning through "Godhead", it has become increasingly difficult to recommend the series to newcomers. Although this was already the case before, the common crossovers have become unending, especially with "Green Lantern" and "Green Lantern Corps", which some think may as well not be separate books at all for the amount of interconnecting they have.
  • Critical Backlash: Quite a few comic book fans, particularly younger ones, have started reading series from the New 52 and found it's negative reputation somewhat undeserved.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: Many things about the reboot just screams this.
    • Storylines like:
      • "Death of the Family" (The Joker hogging the spotlight and being improbably successful after some time out of the spotlight and the Bat Family falling apart).
      • "The Pearl" (which ended with Damian's death and members of the Bat Family mourning him-plus Batman getting another Wangst period during which he gave the most violent Never Be a Hero speech to someone ever).
      • "The Culling" (which tossed the Teen Titans into a super-powered Battle Royale situation by a Just as Planned Utopia Justifies the Means-preachy Villain Sue called "Harvest", and that the Titans (and two other teams) barely survived).
    • The Superman/Lois Lane Ship getting torpedoed (for how long nobody knows-but it would require the Superman/Wonder Woman ship to get sunk for it to get fixed).
      • The Superman/Wonder Woman relationship having devolved from "super-powered couple which overcome problems by the power of trust" to (during the "underpowered Superman/Lois Lane exposes his secret identity" storyline of "Lies") "super-powered couple who can barely trust each other and only what remains of their previous happiness (including Happier Times Flashbacks) keeps them from being at each other's throats".
    • Barbara Gordon becoming a borderline Failure Heroine.
    • Shazam being a cynical boy (but only at first).
    • Supergirl, having been a Plucky Girl pre-reboot, now has enough angst to give Spider-Man a run for his money (and enough anger to become a Red Lantern). You can count the number of times she smiles on one hand.
    • The Blue Lantern Corps (which is powered by and represents hope) being wiped out.
    • The Hostile Show Takeover of Villain's Month.
    • The following "Forever Evil" event and forced Nothing Is the Same Anymore regarding several titles.
    • Dan DiDio's mandate (which had at least one writing team quitting).
    • Earth 2 Superman being a brainwashed Dragon-in-Chief to Darkseid... though he turned out to be a Bizarro instead.
    • A whole lot of things big and small changing.
    • Future's End: All of the victories of the heroes, all of their happiness, all of those beloved characters, will be killed and turned worthless and the triggers are coming ever-so-inexorably closer... and, oh yeah, the time-travel shenanigans of the arc have not changed the chances of this future existing in any way whatsoever, except for some more super humans running around playing resistance-and Heaven only knows if the writers won't come around to turn this into a mere Hope Spot.
  • Dork Age: Considered one for the DC Universe due to just how laughably bad the attempts to be "darker and edgy" tried to make the comics be. It barely clicked with the majority and was thoroughly mocked for it's attempts to replace the old continuity of the DC history. At best, it was commended for at least sticking with the idea and trying something new (not all of it was bad and some good stories came out of it). But it was obvious in the end this wasn't the best direction to go for the company and was doing them more harm than good. DC wisely got the hint and brought things back to semi-normalcy with Rebirth which allowed the history of the previous continuity to return, kept some of the good parts of the New 52, re-injected some much needed levity to the comics again and re-railed a lot of the heroes' personalities back to their former selves.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Despite how divided the fandom is with the whole reboot in general, some characters are quite well liked for their interesting characterizations and potential for stories, such as the New 52's take on Aquaman and Orm, Strix from Birds of Prey, and Billy Batson's five foster siblings.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!:
    • A common gripe with the New 52 is that despite a large number of changes, the Continuity Lock-Out that was typical for the old DCU did not disappear, and many characters (such as Green Lanterns) still require extensive knowledge of their old DCU stories to understand what is going on, instead of having a fresh start. What makes things even more confusing is that many older fans who would be otherwise immune to Continuity Lockout are confused as well, due to the fact that whatever continuity that has been retained has been very hazily defined. For example, according to the new "superheroes debuted five years ago" compressed timeline, Batman started his career and took on all four male Robins within six years. In the end, all that it's accomplished is make it so everyone, even long time fans, is confused by what's going on.
    • Earth 2 has received this kind of complaint, since it eventually turned from a different team of superheroes similar to those from Justice Society of America fighting against the onslaughts of new villains and a different member of the forces of Darkseid to Batman's team vs. Superman's team.
    • The same can be said of the practice as of July 2014 to re-relaunch cancelled series under new creative teams, when one of the points made in the New 52 is that there are only 52 running books at once, taking space from newer ideas in an attempt to reboot a reboot.
    • There's been a recent phenomena of what's referred to as 'House Style', where creative teams tend to make each book look and feel almost identical. Artwork tends to be similar to Jim Lee's art, with the colourists using the same techniques, and writers sticking to writing and characterizing the heroes in a similar True Art Is Angsty way; because of this, many feel that the bulk of the line-up isn't really bad, just boring because they all feel generic. The few books that succeed to escape this 'House Style', either by unique artwork, creative writing, or some combination, tend to get more interest online for actually being different.
  • Replacement Scrappy: While Cyborg is by no means hated in general, many preferred him as a member of the Teen Titans and would rather have Martian Manhunter stay as a member of the Big 7.
  • Seasonal Rot: One major criticism of DC is that they've allowed familiar brand names to languish under subpar creative teams for too long, despite poor sales and critical reception. Series such as Suicide Squad, Teen Titans, and Red Hood and the Outlaws are the most guilty of this. Other titles such as Green Arrow and Catwoman have been stuck with a highly disliked writer for far too long that by the time the creative team changed, no one took notice, while titles like Wonder Woman and The Flash declined greatly after their initial creative teams departed. There's plenty of backlash against DC for giving too many books to notorious writers such as Ann Nocenti and Scott Lobdell.
  • Tainted by the First Issue: Since DC released fifty-two first issues in one month, even people willing to buy all fifty-two #1s were unlikely to give anything they didn't like a second chance. (How many #2s are you going to buy of comics you already have a bad impression of? When there might be dozens of them?) Ergo, any writer who put something controversial in the first issue, expecting readers to stick around for justification in later issues, was making a grave mistake. Several of the series died due to their first issue not being as good as later ones.
    • However, the "add something controversial to hook in fans" thing was a double edged sword. Catwoman and Red Hood and the Outlaws drew in massive amounts of outcry and drama over scenes of sexualization (Catwoman having rough sex with a hesitant Batman, Starfire in some cheesecake poses and having sex with Roy Harper despite not being able to tell humans apart). While Judd Winick's Catwoman run was short-lived, Scott Lobdell's Red Hood and the Outlaws ended up being a rallying cry from readers rebelling against "social justice warriors", whereas it probably would have been cancelled otherwise. Thus, proving No Such Thing as Bad Publicity.
    • Superman was reintroduced as a man who in his early twenties was violent towards non powered criminals, openly mocking the police as he ran from them and a few years later in the timeline, choke slams Batman in a fight when he already knew nothing in Batman's arsenal could hurt him. Even the more grown up version introduced in issue one of a parallel series was shown to be a more angry brooding figure than Superman had ever been.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: The announcement of the relaunch drew a very large amount of vitriol from a lot of people. To this day, the base is still broken on whether the relaunch is still good or not.
    • One of the reasons for this reaction was that quite a few titles suffered from an Aborted Arc in their cancellations - although most of them wrapped up fairly smoothly, there was still a small forest of dangling plot threads left behind, presumably now never to be resolved.
    • The fact this line abolished the Underwear of Power trait of the main DCU was also controversial.
    • One of the most controversial examples of this in fandom is giving The Phantom Stranger a definitive origin.
    • Lobo's new, Twilight-esque design has not gone over well with fans.
    • Mr. Freeze's backstory's alterations have come under fire, partially because they screwed up his Tragic Villain background, and partially because, in the original, the Corrupt Corporate Executive who caused all the problems was a disgusting asshole who was just such a good liar and fake that everyone loved him. Both the original episode of Batman: The Animated Series and the adaptation of it in Batman: Arkham Origins were highly praised, and the episode won an Emmy. So, what did they do? Changed it so that, instead, it was Bruce Wayne and have it that Mr. Freeze was delusionally in love with random frozen woman. Even most of the people who like the New 52 harshly panned this change!
  • The Scrappy:
    • As stated above, new Lobo.
    • New 52's version of Tim Drake, who is In Name Only and considering how it's a false identity via the witness protection program, not even that. Doesn't help that both of the New 52's attempts at the Teen Titans (of which Tim is a member) are regarded as a Dork Age.
    • The New 52's take on Jason Todd is not very well liked either (even among those that like the character as a whole), with many saying that in Red Hood and the Outlaws, he doesn't really seem to have grown from how he was back when he was killed off in A Death in the Family or from when he first came back from the dead (some "attempts" at development have been made, but whether or not any of them are convincing or well-written is contested). The fact that most of his appearances in this verse are written by Scott Lobdell (generally regarded as one of the worst writers working at DC right now) just exacerbates this.
    • Wally West, who has been rebooted as a 12 year old delinquent and whose Race Lift is handled in a manner that to many readers smacks of White Man's Burden.
    • Joker's Daughter, full stop.
    • Harvest, for being an annoying Invincible Villain who just won't shut up about his Utopia Justifies the Means.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Artemis, a popular character from the (still airing at the time) Young Justice cartoon, was introduced and killed in the space of an issue of the Teen Titans/Legion Lost/Superboy crossover "The Culling". The final issue of the first run of Teen Titans reveals Artemis and every other teen murdered during, before and after the events of the Culling were revived and had their powers (if they had any) removed. That being said, Artemis has not been seen since anyway.
    • Much of the supporting cast of Green Arrow was Put on a Bus for the better part of a storyline, so as to introduce Felicity Smoak and Mia Dearden into the New 52 reality, as part of an effort to make the book more appealing to fans of the old series as well as Arrow. Once that arc was over, Felicity, Mia and all of the supporting cast except for hacker Fyff and Ollie's half-sister Emiko were similarly Put on a Bus.
    • The New 52 Superman to many people. The vast majority of his New 52 run had the Man of Steel as a Dark and Brooding character who heavily fell back on the "Superman is real, Clark Kent is fake" mentality of the Silver Age and a good layer of Batman on top. They also shilled the hell out of the Superman/Wonder Woman pairing like crazy, as if trying to force readers to forget about Superman and Lois Lane. This obviously backfired when they released Superman: Lois and Clark at the same time the Superman: Truth storyline was in full swing as readers, turned off by Truth's heavier Darker and Edgier tones ran towards the pre-Flashpoint Superman with arms wide open. By the time Superman: Savage Dawn came to an end, the damage had already been done, even as they finally got Superman acting like Superman.
    • This backfired even harder when Superman: Super League came out, killing off the New 52 Superman (and the first issue of the following Action Comics arc with the pre-Flashpoint Superman in the starring role pretty much setting in stone that (at least for now) he's Deader Than Dead). The way how New 52 Supes went and Faced Death With Dignity was a strong enough Tear Jerker than people who didn't liked this version of Supes really mourned seeing him go.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: DC has shown that they could do reboots before with Crisis on Infinite Earths, so a reboot itself wasn't a bad idea. The problem, however, was DC's refusal to completely reboot their universe - not only did they later go and have stories that followed up on events from stories made before the reboot with a policy of "(insert story here) is Canon Discontinuity until we say it's not", but in particular, they refused to reboot Batman and Green Lantern because of how popular the books featuring those characters were before the reboot, which would make it confusing for anyone who hadn't been reading those books before the reboot if they wanted to pick them up. Additionally, there was also DC jumping straight into crossovers less than a year after the reboot, which meant that audiences had relatively little time to get used to the new status quo before it was shaken up.
  • True Art Is Angsty: Apparently, Dan DiDio thinks so, and has an actual mandate enforcing this. Ironically, DiDio had to disclose the existence of the mandate in order to stave off people who were raging at DC for being apparently homophobic (the quitting team mentioned above being the one working on Batwoman, and they quit because the enforcing of the mandate meant that the titular character (who is a lesbian) and her beau were not allowed to get married (the linked article explains the Fridge Logic behind it-why not allow them to get married and still make them miserable somehow?)).
    Robots Voice: Creative team J.H. Williams and W. Haden Blackman announced they’ll be leaving Batwoman, citing DC’s editorial interference and the company’s total refusal to allow characters Kate Kane and her girlfriend Gotham City police officer Maggie Sawyer, to marry each other.Earlier this year, Batwoman proposed to Maggie twice, and the fact that DC didn’t make a big public thing about it should have been a warning sign that they were never going to go through with it. “We were told emphatically no marriage can result,” said J.H. Williams via Twitter. Although he felt that the idea “was never put to us as being anti-gay marriage” it just seems DC doesn’t want any of their heroes – be it Superman and Lois, or the Flash and Iris – to be married. Because marriage is for old people, and we all know no-one over thirty reads comic books.
  • WTH, Costuming Department?: Quite a few of the redesigns, but especially Jim Lee's Justice League - and especially Jim Lee's Superman. The design's been blamed for seriously harming the Superman line, and the bizarre choices it makes (heavily armoring a character who's invulnerable, removing the Underwear of Power but not adding enough red or yellow to balance it out, excessive lines and seaming making it hard to draw and messy on the page, the weird Nehru collar and extended cuffs looking militaristic) have made it a fairly common example on the internet for what not to do in character design. After much pushing, his design was completely dropped after just three years, with none of the redesigns since taking much from it, and even people who like the era have claimed that Superman was easily the worst design in his own book. A few even wished that he'd kept the T-shirt and jeans in Action Comics, instead of "graduating" to his "modern" look.


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