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Are there No Bad Characters only Bad Writing?

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Showing 1-25 of 45 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 9, 2012 2:55:57 PM PST
J. Case says:
I think that there are bad characters.

Posted on Dec 10, 2012 10:39:10 PM PST
Nicos says:

Posted on Dec 11, 2012 12:03:34 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 11, 2012 12:06:53 AM PST
Do you mean "bad" as in "poor" or "weak"? As opposed to "evil" or "misguided"?
I think even the best writers would have trouble writing a good story with Booster Gold or Speedball/Penance. And despite hiring nearly all the most talented writers in the medium (Moore, Miller, Gaiman, Morrison, Dave Sim, Ennis, Bendis) the only Spawn story I even came close to liking was the Medieval Spawn/Witchblade crossover. Then there's characters that have been overused: Wolverine, Dr Doom, The Joker, the other X-Men, or had too many series: Superman, Batman, Spider-Man.
Aquaman might be a good test case. He's been around since the 40's had tons of writers work on him but has any succeeded. Wizard really hyped the 90's Harpoon hand version. I think that was created by Peter David but was most popular in Morrison's JLA. Robin is one I dislike but he's a DC institution. Of all my favorite Batman stories the only ones to have any version of Robin are Kingdom Come and Dark Knight Returns.
The Sentry was an interesting idea at first but the way he was used quickly became annoying and unless I'm mistaken his death was the result of fans extreme dislike of the character and the angst involved with "the Void." But many said Marvel doesn't need its own Superman since Thor is close enough plus the analogues like Hyperion and Gladiator from the Shiar Imperial Guard.

Posted on Dec 12, 2012 6:02:52 PM PST
S. Kelly says:
If Aquaman is the test case then I say that it's bad writers not bad characters because the new Aquaman is a really good series IMHO. And DC's 52 series had a pretty good Booster Gold story running through the whole thing. So I think a good writer can make pretty much anything work.

Posted on Dec 13, 2012 3:26:12 AM PST
If its a bad character wouldnt that be on the writer. Of course some of the most useless characters were created by stan lee. Who helped think of some of the greatest heroes villains for decades. So maybe its not bad writers and just bad writing. Everyone has a off day.

Le leap!

Posted on Dec 13, 2012 12:31:31 PM PST
A good writer can often redeem a bad character if he sees some potential in him. A few years ago, who'd have ever dreamed we'd be anticipating a live action Guardians of the Galaxy movie starring Rocket Raccoon? I usually like silly characters, and even I never liked Rocket Raccoon. Now he's awesome and everybody loves him.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 13, 2012 10:11:36 PM PST
Nicos says:
Mon Dieu! Are you implying that Batroc ze Leaper is a Bad Character!? Zut alors!

Posted on Dec 13, 2012 11:39:51 PM PST
Vive Batroc!

Posted on Dec 14, 2012 11:04:12 AM PST
could anyone ever be fearful of Fancy Dan?

Posted on Dec 14, 2012 3:05:14 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 14, 2012 3:08:07 PM PST
I actually like Dan, but Batroc would pwn him.

I like Dan and the Enforcers because they're a trio of plainclothes non-powered guys who can actually make a tolerable showing against the superpowered dudes running around. That said, I can't recall any writer except Stan showing them much respect.

Posted on Dec 14, 2012 3:40:38 PM PST
Batroc vs. Fancy Dan in a 3 round ppv bout would be HILARIOUS. i've got five dollars on Dan to lose his hat by the 2nd round.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 15, 2012 12:55:17 AM PST
J. Case says:
When I say bad I mean as in they are a bad idea that are laughable although some are intentionally created to be lame.

Paste Pot Pete
It was so bad for him that he changed his Super Villain name to the Trapster but still mocked by Spider Man for using the crappy name Paste Pot Pete.
Orca A poorman's version of Killer Croc.
The Fly So to defeat Spider Man created something Spiders eat.

Posted on Dec 15, 2012 7:54:48 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 15, 2012 8:00:31 PM PST
The Red Bee! Worst premise for a hero. Training bee's and keeping them in his belt buckle. I don't know how much bees are capable of even being trained but if they are they would die after stinging someone and he would have to train a new batch. Wasps would last longer. He also caried a "Stinger Gun." One of the worst costumes and names. One of the few characters to have been killed and stayed dead pre and post crisis. Pre-crisis killed by Baron Blitzkieg (under orders of Roy Thomas). Then shown in "Comics Limbo" in Grant Morrison's Animal Man. Killed again by James Robinson in JSA: The Golden Age. Came back as a bitter ghost in one issue of his Starman series. I just discovered a new version of the character has been introduced in Unclesam and the Freedom Fighters.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 16, 2012 10:40:11 PM PST
J. Case says:
Then there is King Tut from the Adam West Batman tv series who I don't think should have been brought into Comic Books.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 17, 2012 10:22:10 AM PST
Well, on the old campy TV show he's great, but the Batman comics are so serious these days they probably don't have a place for a funny fat guy with amnesia, so they slimmed him down and made him all serious, which I gather just made him kind of forgettable.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012 9:12:41 PM PST
J. Case says:
There's also Calender Man who I recall reading he's a lesser version of the Riddler. Even with the change of a costume he's still a embarassment.
The Rainbow Raider He's a enemy of the Flash, a color blind artist his art rejected by the world so he decides to use the goggles for a life of crime, and steal famous pieces of art.
Polka Dot Man He's a enemy of Batman, and his costume yes there are polka dots on them which he uses as weapons.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012 10:09:30 PM PST
Nicos says:
Nah, the Cluemaster was the crappy Riddler knockoff who had the daughter (The Spoiler?) who teamed up with Robin for awhile in the 90's. Not sure if she is still around.

Calendar Man just had the crimes based on Holidays MO. Personally, my favorite spoof of him was in the Venture Bros. where they had Mr. Monday who tried to get everything to revolve around Mondays.
Monarch: We break out tomorrow!
Mr. Monday: Can't it wait until Monday?
Monarch: NO!

haha, cracks me up everytime.

Posted on Dec 20, 2012 6:08:39 AM PST
S. Kelly says:
I seem to remember during Civil War some guy with big letters stuck all over his body. He would just throw letters at people when in trouble. Alphabet Man? Literacy Lad? I don't remember, but I think that's a good example of something that is beyond a good writer's ability to fix.

Posted on Dec 20, 2012 10:58:47 AM PST
"Are there No Bad Characters only Bad Writing?"

The Legion of Super-Heroes is based on this very premise. :)

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 20, 2012 8:41:51 PM PST
J. Case says:
Maybe you are thinking of Typeface? No super hero was needed to beat that crappy super villain.

Posted on Dec 27, 2012 1:48:58 PM PST
S. Kelly says:
Ah, yes...Typeface...The editors (all of them) must have had the day off when that idea came up.

Posted on Jan 5, 2013 11:45:12 PM PST
J. Case says:
Stilt Man He was killed by the Punisher. A horrid defeat with Goliath beating him with one of his torn suits, self proclaimed to be the best still lost to Daredevil and failed to kill Foggy Nelson, accidently used the condenser on himself.
Stegron A poorman's version of the Lizard.

Posted on Jan 6, 2013 5:20:25 AM PST
Esgaldil says:
I remember liking Stilt-Man the first time I saw him - a Frank Miller story in which Turk steals the Stilts.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2013 8:19:09 PM PST
J. Case says:
Or they thought the character wouldn't make more than one appearnce, or they were able to convince people it wasn't a bad idea.

Posted on Jan 8, 2013 8:24:54 PM PST
I've never read a Stegron story, but he always seemed cool. Is he lame? How do you mess up a guy who's half dinosaur? You can improve anything by making it half dinosaur!
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Discussion in:  Comics forum
Participants:  10
Total posts:  45
Initial post:  Dec 9, 2012
Latest post:  Nov 13, 2014

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