Potentially bad news for new “Justice League of America” member Vibe — according to “Channel 52” (found in the back of all of this week’s DC Comics), the character might not “even live much longer’:
Last week, I wrote about the low sales on the debut issue of Vibe’s solo title — a comic launched the same time as the best-selling “Justice league of America” comic it is a spin-off from. While the above panel could be a red-herring — I mean, of course Vibe would be first on the chopping block to die — is it also a subtle commentary on the future of the comic itself?
Vibe just seems to get no respect. Witness the cover to “Justice League of America” #2, in which a tiny drawing of the Hispanic character is shoved all the way on the bottom right of the cover (with his back facing the reader):
I mean, is there a greater way to say that “this character sucks” than that?
But is there any sort of real agenda in terms of some sort of insensitivity to Vibe because he is a character “of color?” Isn’t Green Lantern Simon Baz, who is Arab-American, front-and-center of this cover? And isn’t Katana, who is Japanese, right next to him? Granted, there are no African-Americans on this team — but Cyborg is the solo character of the cover of “Justice League” #18, also out this week.
Should we be “counting” characters of diversity at all? Is that offensive and unnecessarily “PC?” Do you think that the editors at DC take these factors into consideration? Do you think there was a conscious decision to focus on GL rather than Green Arrow on that “JLA” cover because of issues of increasing diversity awareness? Or did it just reflect the storyline, or was it just an artistic choice on David Finch’s part? Shouldn’t comics be just enjoyed as comics?
Are we in a “post-racial” comic book industry, where these topics never come up? Or is there still some work to be done in the diversity dept. when it comes to mainstream superhero comics, both in terms of characters and creators?
And could it simply be that: “Vibe sucks?”
Old-school Vibe: no respect.
But did he ever have a chance? He was based on a character from a failed incarnation of the “Justice League” that only hard-core comic book fans remember. He was considered silly and a bit of a “joke” even then. He is still positioned as such — not really respected by the Justice League, and placed in a costume that even he knows is kind of corny.
In short: Aquaman is happy that there is “Vibe” to take the heat off of him in the ridiculing department.
However, as I mentioned before, this could all be a red-herring — many issues from now, Vibe could totally prove himself…or even die heroically in battle.
I still feel bad about the whole Vibe thing, though…maybe a fan group can be formed to support him and keep DC from killing him off, just like the one for Stephanie Brown/Spoiler.
I’m calling it now: GOOD VIBES.
Yes, “Good Vibes” is an organization designed for the promotion of respect for Vibe in the comics and in the fandom. Together, we can make a difference and change comics forever.
GOOD VIBES: join us. Sign the petitions. Demand he get his own tribute case in the Justice League of America headquarters. KEEP OUR FAVORITE CHARACTER ALIVE!!!