I think that the two biggest things about Steph's death that rankled so was that it was such a blatantly obvious gimmick on top of another gimmick and that it was such a poorly written event with Bats, Steph and then Leslie all horribly out of character. And DC seemingly decided to embrace that decision by including the tools that Black Mask tortured her to death with as toy accessories. (Y'know. For kids!)
People say I'm in a world of my own. I call it Planet Karen.
Just finished reading War Drums and my nerd rage has been activated. WTF? I’m sorry but this seems to be one of those situations where bringing a character back from the dead not only kills any of the pathos of their death but also kills off any ideological theme that the book could be going for. War Drums begins with Batman having to once again come to terms with the death of Jason Todd due to his own negligence in hiring a teenager to go against armed psychopaths. It’s dark, it’s tragic, and there’s an actual main point to the story. It’s an interesting deconstruction of the Batman-Robin relationship ruined by the fanbase’s need to have a happy ending all the time. Even Disney doesn’t need to have a happy ending all the time. Because sometimes life isn’t happy. Sometimes people do die pointless, unheroic deaths due to a series of tragic flaws. In fact, most of us do, and that makes a far more interesting statement than having everyone dance off into the sunset.
Reminds me of a webcomic released about Superman:
Rex: The way to make Supes interesting is to put him up against a problem that he can't fix by punching someone through a building! Put him in a situation where, say, everyone he loves starts dying of a disease that he can't detect or cure, passing away in his arms, one by one. At the end he's left the sole survivor of the doomed planet Earth, six billion dead - only this time, he had a chance to stop the disaster, and he FAILED.
Rapter: That's terrible, T-Rex.
Rex: It's modern AND dark!
Last edited by LunarMoon; 08-15-2011 at 08:12 PM.
I never liked Steph as either Spoiler or Robin(but I LOVE her as the new Batgirl...that just got cancelled-that was an awesome book). Anyway,even though I didnt like her as a character at the time,her "death" is one of the things that made me quit reading comics for awhile...and I've never gone back to the levels of buying like I did before DC went super-dark and grim. I was beyond appalled at how they made Leslie Thompkins into a murderer....thats on par with someone suddenly deciding that Alfred is a child molester. As much as I love it,the DC Universe has been a pretty sick and disgusting place for awhile now....I honestly dont understand how anyone could consider a story like this "entertaining" and I damn sure cant understand why any editor worth his salt would consider it a good idea. Glad Steph made it back and had an awesome run as Batgirl...heres hoping we see her again real soon!!!
I don't know about ALL cases but I know that what typically happens is that either a writer's story gets upgraded into an event or they're told (in Meltzer's case) that they will be hired but only for an event. At that point, they get handed a hit list of characters who MUST die, most of whom have little to do with the plot submitted. Almost every event in the last 15 years had one of these. The writer generally has enough clout to say "no" to one name (Kyle Rayner in IDC, Dick Grayson in IC, Martian Manhunter in OWAW.) If they say "no" to more than that or refuse, the story either gets canned or handed to another writer and the writer risks losing any other assignments they have in the pipeline.
In most cases, the writer's career depends upon executing the hitlist. The writers almost always work in "outs" or begin planning ways to resurrect the characters they killed almost instantly. Often, a writer who really hates an assigned death will go out of their way to make it bad, unsatisfying, offensive, or somehow unflattering to popular characters in hopes of building support for a reversal or at least making the death count.
This is where I quote my favorite line in relation to "real life happens that way."
Real life is not like fiction. Fiction has to make sense.
I'll amend that to say that storytelling, particularly a genre story, should make sense.