Sporadic Sequential
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
DC Doujinshi

Following up on yesterday's post imagining which manga creators would be good fits for Western superheroes, here's a look at DC's characters:

» Batman by Takeshi Obata - With his striking use of black and white art, Obata would do a great dark, shadowy Batman. Obata's skills at exaggerated facial contortions would come in handy for depicting all of the disfigured members of Batman's rogues gallery. (Imagine how disturbing the Joker's grin would look thanks to Obata's dramatic underlighting and unusual camera angles.) Plus, in Death Note Obata demonstrated he could make even the talkiest exposition scenes visually exciting, so Batman's detective side could receive greater focus without things becoming too boring. And finally, Light's father Soichiro Yagami is basically already Commissioner Gordon:

Jim Gordon, Super Cop!

» Superman by Katsuhiro Otomo - This might not seem like the most obvious match, but I think Otomo could bring a lot of majesty and scope to the Man of Steel. Plus, I'd love to see Otomo's version of Metropolis, and he'd be great at designing all kinds of crazy high-tech science gear for Luthor and other villains to use against Supes.

» Wonder Woman by Kosuke Fujishima - It seems appropriate to have the Oh My Goddess creator work on another goddess. He'd just need to work on making sure Diana was strong and assertive, not fawning and passive as Belldandy often comes across.

» Creeper by Junji Ito - There must be some Ditkoesque vibe at work in Ito's art, because here's another Ditko-created character I'd love to see Ito on. I say let Ito run wild with his horror instincts and make the Creeper truly creepy for the first time. (Why have the Creeper battling thugs in costumes when he could be fighting strange, supernatural forces?)

» Phantom Stranger by Housui Yamazaki - Private detective Reiji Akiba, the main (or at least recurring) character in Yamazaki's Mail manga, reminded me a lot of the Phantom Stranger in the way he would just suddenly show up at the end of a story and solve everything, so I'd love to see Yamazaki work his same magic on this underused deus ex machina background fixture from the DCU.

» Dr. Fate by Yellow Tanabe - I love Tanabe's work on the mystically-themed Kekkaishi, so I think she's be a great fit for one of my favorite characters who can never seem to catch a break, popularity-wise. Perhaps she could even come up with a system of rules for Fate's incantations (similar to Yoshimori's three-stage barrier-generation process) so the sorcery doesn't seem quite so arbitrary and made-up on-the-spot.

» Metamorpho by Mine Yoshizaki - If anyone could out-Bob Haney Bob Haney, it'd be the comic genius behind Sgt. Frog, Mine Yoshizaki. With his fluid, dynamic art, Yoshizaki would be a great fit for the Man of a Thousand Forms. Plus, I'll bet Yoshizaki would draw a really stunning Sapphire Stagg.

Sapphire Stagg, Mine Yoshizaki Style

» Jonah Hex by Tite Kubo - Kubo's short-lived Zombie Powder series showed that Kubo had some fondness for the Western genre, so I'd be curious to see what he could do on a straight Western. (OK, I'd still want to see Kubo's distinctive character and creature designs, so he could cheat by making it a horror western.) Plus, it'd be fun to see Hex and his supporting cast decked out in anachronistic hip-hop attire in the chapter title pages.

» Blue Beetle by Hitoshi Iwaaki - I've joked before that the current iteration of the Blue Beetle basically rips off the manga Parasyte (evil alien symbiote finds itself turning good after bonding with pure-hearted teen), so why not just put the creator of Parasyte on Blue Beetle and watch him go nuts? It might be our only chance of seeing a penis-arm in a DC book! [WARNING! Image is NSFW! But you should know that just by the description, "penis-arm."]

» Metal Men by Eiichiro Oda - Based on his work on One Piece, Oda seems like the perfect choice to bring both humor and action to the silly superhero sextet (now a septet?).

» Teen Titans by Masashi Kishimoto - With his flair for well-choreographed fights and teenage soap opera elements, the Naruto creator could make Teen Titans a top-selling comic about a group of young sidekicks trying to break out on their own and graduate to the upper echelons of crimefighting.

» Manhunter by Naoki Urasawa - Urasawa's sense of European architecture and intrigue would be put to good use as he takes us back to the Seventies to shed some light on the Untold Tales of the Paul Kirk Manhunter.

» Doom Patrol by Minetaro Mochizuki - Given the origin stories of the individual Doom Patrollers (not to mention the outcome of many of their earlier adventures), the creator of the apocalyptic adventure series Dragon Head seems like a natural fit for these unfortunate outcasts.

» Chase by Iou Kuroda - Sexy Voice and Robo obviously made a strong impression on me, because now whenever I think "hardboiled female P.I. in need of a revamp," I think of Kuroda.

» Cyborg by Hiroki Endo - Again, because of the whole man/machine hybrid thing. And because it'd be nice to see Cyborg carry a solo title.

» Supergirl by Usamaru Furuya - As long as DC is determined to make her a ditsy teen, why not go all the way and really have fun with the concept?

And BECAUSE ALEX SCOTT DEMANDED IT, Birds of Prey by Masakazu Katsura!


* I'm sure you noticed, but there's a lot of repetition from yesterday's list, both in terms of creators listed and concepts I paired them with. What can I say? I really like certain creators, and I've obviously pigeon-holed them in terms of how I see their work.

* It wasn't as easy to come up with a list of mash-ups involving DC characters, for whatever reason. I must have imprinted on the Marvel heroes at a more impressionable age.

* I tried to come up with ideas for all of DC's 2nd-tier "Big Guns," e.g., Green Lantern, Flash, Aquaman — all the other recognizable heroes after the Trinity — but my heart just wasn't in it. If it's not part of a story involving them in the Justice League, I guess I don't really care about a lot of those characters. I'm more attracted to DC's oddball characters who can never manage to sustain a series.

* Only two scans tonight. I was very, very tired.

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