Black Lightning creator Tony Isabella doubled down regarding his recent comments on DC Comics and Batman.
On October 23rd, Isabella took to Facebook describe Batman as “toxic and the ruination of DC Comics” in response to invites to Facebook groups about Batman.
“Here’s a tip. Don’t ask me to join groups or visit pages that have “Batman” in their titles. He was once my favorite comics hero. Now I consider him one of the most toxic and the ruination of DC Comics.”
He added, “DC hurts their other characters by making Batman the center of their universe.”
He would double down on his view of Batman and DC Comics in another Facebook post after his original comments gained traction.
On October 29th, Isabella wrote, “Batman was once my favorite comics character and I still love many versions of the characters.”
“I think Batman has become a toxic character. I think DC’s insistence on him dominating their universe diminishes and hurts their other characters.
I expressed this when I requested people not invite me to join Batman groups.”
Isabella would then criticize a number of websites who covered his inflammatory comments calling them “low life comics news site[s].”
“Bleeding Cool decided this would make great click bait and those miserable cowards were right about that. The “news” has been picked up by just about every low life comics news site you can imagine.
Neither BC nor any of the bottom feeders following their lead ever came to me for clarification. Instead, they built what was a throwaway post into this big f****** deal.”
He then claims he’s been “harassed and insulted” due to the coverage of his comments.
“As a result, I have been harassed and insulted by the usual creeps who live for this sort of thing.”
After condemning his critics as “creeps” and “lowlifes” and noting that he’s blocking many of them, Isabella slams his “naysayers” specifically Bleeding Cool’s Rich Johnston and Jude Terror.
“At the risk of sounding prideful, not one of these naysayers (and that most definitely includes Rich Johnson and Jude Terror) have accomplished as much in comics or done as much for comics as I have. And I only consider my career as moderately successful.”
Isabella concludes by thanking those who are supporting him.
“I greatly appreciate the support I have been shown publicly and privately, often from surprising corners of the Internet. I suspect the creeps and naysayers do not receive support for their trolling or praise for their writing. I am eternally grateful for my fans and friends and industry colleagues.
Thank you. I’ll keep doing my level best to entertain and educate. I’m far from done with my work.”
Batman is not a toxic character. He’s the exact opposite of a toxic character. He’s a hero, who goes out of his way to put the people of Gotham before himself.
He might use some brutal methods now and again, but he consistently works to fight for Gotham and the people that live there even at the risk of his own life.
Isabella knows full well calling Batman “toxic” is incendiary, and that he would get pushback from it. It’s no surprise people would criticize him for the comments.
In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if Isabella made the comments specifically to get some attention. Well, he sure got it and now it seems he can’t handle it.
As for DC Comics relying too much on Batman, that’s definitely a valid argument, and it’s one that Deadpool creator Rob Liefeld made as well.
Liefeld wrote in a deleted Twitter post earlier this year:
“DC has a heavy rotation of Batman titles that is required in order for them to keep pace with Marvel. It’s increasingly their only go to option, while Marvel has a variety of families that provide them with sales options. This has been my point forever, I’m consistent with it.”
It’s possible DC Comics uses Batman because he sells. Looking at the September 2019 numbers on Comichron, the main Batman book, Batman #78, was the fourth most shipped DC Comics title. Batman: Curse of the White Knight was fifth, and Batman #79 was 7th. Detective Comics #1011 and #1012 were both 9th and 10th.
The other DC Comics books in the top 10 for the publisher were Doomsday Clock, DCeased: A Good Day to Die, Harleen, Justice League #31, and Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy.
It’s hard to argue that DC Comics has a Batman problem when Batman books are making up half of your top 10 most shipped books.
It’s quite possible they are responding to the market that wants to read more about Batman.
And if you want to look at the top 10 from Marvel Comics. Four of the top 10 books from September are X-Men books in House of X #4 and #5 and Powers of X #4 and #5.
The other Marvel Comics in the top 10 for the publisher are Spider-Man #1, Absolute Carnage #3, Amazing Spider-Man #30, Venom #18, Strikeforce #1, and Amazing Spider-Man #29.
One could argue looking at just September, that DC actually has more diversity in their top 10 books than Marvel does. Marvel has 5 Spider-Man related books with Venom and Carnage being Spider-Man villains and 4 X-Men books. The only non-Spider-Man or X-Men book is Strike Force that features Blade, Angela, Wiccan, Winter Soldier, Monica Rambeau, Daimon Hellstrom, and Spider-Woman.
Meanwhile, DC has a Watchmen sequel book, a team book with John Constantine, Mister Miracle, Big Barder, Blue Beetle, and Booster Gold, a Justice League book, a Harley Quinn book, and a Harley and Poison Ivy book.
What do you make of Isabella’s comments? Do you think Batman is “toxic?” Do you think DC Comics has a Batman problem?