In an earlier post, I mentioned that last week a friend of mine brought to our weekly cartoonists' group meeting a pile of old comics which he no longer wanted for all those assembled to pick over. At the end of the evening there remained a few that no one had claimed. For good reason, in some cases, as it turned out. Perhaps unwisely, I tossed them into my backpack as I headed out the door.
Among them were Champions #12 and Flare #2, published in 1988 by an outfit then known as Hero Comics. SPACE promoter Bob Corby had looked at these and revealed that he'd never actually read a Hero comic before placing them back on the pile, still unread by him. I realize now just how lucky Bob is to be able to make that claim.
The English language does not contain enough synonyms for excrement to accurately describe how awful these books are.
What is truly remarkable about these comics, however, is how benighted the editors appear to be concerning the actual merits of their product. On the letters pages they take every available opportunity to tout how sophisticated and literate their comics are, and how much they are different from, and better than, the standard stuff that DC and Marvel were churning out at the time.
The comics themselves fall far short of the hype. Based on a role-playing game, Champions is yet another ninth rate X-Men/New Teen Titans rip-off with an overly complicated and barely comprehensible plot, stilted dialogue and amateurish art. All this is spiced up by some implied sex taking place off panel to make it mature and sophisticated and literate and all that stuff.
I couldn't even bring myself to finish reading Flare. I'm not sure what the editors believe makes this book mature and literate. Perhaps its the dialogue peppered with painfully obvious double entendres, or maybe its the scenes where the heroine's cartoonishly huge tits repeatedly fall out of her skimpy costume during the heat of battle.
The worst part is that after doing a minimal amount of research on the web, I discovered that Hero Comics is still around, now calling themselves Heroic Publishing and still attempting to foist the same lame concepts and characters on the comics buying public.