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Old June 11th, 2008   superfriend is offline   #17
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I like Corrigan getting his reward as well.

Crispus Allen is a great character and I can't wait to finally read him as The Spectre in the hands of his creator in Revelations. It's going to be grand...have no doubt.

Now, on the topic of the Spectre itself--there was a pretty interesting Spectre series written by J.M. DeMatteis that starred Hal Jordan.

Groan all you want but it brought a trippy and interesting perspective to the Spectre concept. The Spectre is the lapdog of God (The Presence). His role is to dispense justice as a personification of The Wrath of God. That doesn't necessarily mean slaughtering bad guys and resolving (multi/uni)versal threats.

Applying our limited and underdeveloped perspectives to the Spectre's task doesn't cut it. In some cases, death is just a way for a being/thing to transition to another, higher state. Destruction and entropy are necessary forces in the universe in order to make way for creation and new versions of lifeforms. Evolution requires something being evolved out of. How that's done can be as mysterious and unpredictable as anything.

This can make the Spectre so infinitely fascinating to read...but most people don't think in those terms. Most think the Spectre just goes after those who do wrong, which in their minds amounts to bad guys, which leads to the dissonance created in most of the comments here: Why doesn't the Spectre just make the world all good for everyone?

The most common conclusion: The Spectre is too powerful and too one-dimensional and can't be used properly.

It's a failure of imagination, not a failure in concept.

Another dynamic I'd like to see explored is the legacy element of the Spectre. The Spectre's been around since the earliest moments of the universe. If The Spectre needs to be bonded with a human host in order to temper it, who was the first host? Who has held the mantle of the Spectre throughout history. Cris could certainly carry a series with the requisite amount of imagination but how about some vignette issues akin to what Brubaker and Fraction have done with Iron Fist--an issue here or there devoted to prior Spectre hosts. Who knows, maybe there'd be a raison d'etre for these spotlight issues leading into a Seven Soldiers cooperation between the Spectre hosts throughout time to have to deal with.

Don't buy into the idea that the Spectre is just a force that is supposed to wipe all "badness" from the Earth but b/c DC needs bad guys they just use him to cut pedophiles in half with giant scissors.

If Hal Jordan can employ his vaunted Willpower against the Vengeance of the Spectre in order to try to wrest control of the Spectre from God himself in order to be a conduit for Redemption by splitting himself into a Spectre Corps (though it's never framed in such obvious terms) to work throughout the universe then sky's the limit with the Spectre.

It may not be everybody's bag but it doesn't have to be as uptight and obtuse a view as most look at the Spectre with.
 
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Old June 11th, 2008   Justin is offline   #18
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You know, there are actually multiple Spectres in the multiverse (Earth-22 has its own, for example). Perhaps that also means there are multiple versions of The Presence.
 
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Old June 11th, 2008   superfriend is offline   #19
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You know, there are actually multiple Spectres in the multiverse (Earth-22 has its own, for example). Perhaps that also means there are multiple versions of The Presence.
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See, sky's the limit.

The Spectre is definitely in need of someone special who can bring an interesting and expanded take on the character. But I maintain it's not a problem with the concept or character if you've got the imagination and can execute it well.
 
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Old June 11th, 2008   Amentep is offline   #20
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Now, on the topic of the Spectre itself--there was a pretty interesting Spectre series written by J.M. DeMatteis that starred Hal Jordan.

Groan all you want but it brought a trippy and interesting perspective to the Spectre concept. The Spectre is the lapdog of God (The Presence). His role is to dispense justice as a personification of The Wrath of God. That doesn't necessarily mean slaughtering bad guys and resolving (multi/uni)versal threats.
ddf
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Hey I enjoyed the Hal-Spectre series, if nothing else but for DeMatteis' fun cosmic stories.

Another dynamic I'd like to see explored is the legacy element of the Spectre. The Spectre's been around since the earliest moments of the universe. If The Spectre needs to be bonded with a human host in order to temper it, who was the first host? Who has held the mantle of the Spectre throughout history.
ddf
As I remember it, the Ostrander/Mandrake series establishes that the Spectre was hostless and acted directly on God's orders up until the new covenant with man was struck with Christ.

I seem to remember that after that point the indication is that the Spectre entity didn't appear until Corrigan, but I'm sure there's plenty of room to wiggle in there (and since its been awhile, I could be misremembering.)

Don't buy into the idea that the Spectre is just a force that is supposed to wipe all "badness" from the Earth but b/c DC needs bad guys they just use him to cut pedophiles in half with giant scissors.
ddf
I think that there's an inherent problem with believing that the Spectre *should* wipe out all evil. It kinda misses the point of free will and I think (personal interpretation here) that is why the Spectre force is so hard to control. Not because it must kill all criminals, but that it has to enact some form of earthly justice on SOME criminals as a reminder to others that they have a freedom to choose good or evil and face a heavenly justice.

Besides which, we know that the Spectre should met out ironic deaths so pedophiles would be trampled to death by giant baby dolls.

If Hal Jordan can employ his vaunted Willpower against the Vengeance of the Spectre in order to try to wrest control of the Spectre from God himself in order to be a conduit for Redemption by splitting himself into a Spectre Corps (though it's never framed in such obvious terms) to work throughout the universe then sky's the limit with the Spectre.

It may not be everybody's bag but it doesn't have to be as uptight and obtuse a view as most look at the Spectre with.
ddf
I actually liked that aspect of DeMatteis run. I think the thing is he was still doing what the Spectre is supposed to do with his redemption angle and that's why he was able to do it.

That's actually one of my problems with the way Cris Allen has been used as the Spectre, to be honest. It was an interesting dynamic to set it up where he had to confront his son as a murderer, but the outcome, IMO, was all wrong and I think that its ultimately put me in a position where I'm not terribly interested in this iteration of the character.
 
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Old June 11th, 2008   superfriend is offline   #21
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Hey I enjoyed the Hal-Spectre series, if nothing else but for DeMatteis' fun cosmic stories.
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Well, I'm not going to compliment your taste but I can certainly give you kudos for your courage in admitting to this.

An invite to join my friends list will be forthcoming.
As I remember it, the Ostrander/Mandrake series establishes that the Spectre was hostless and acted directly on God's orders up until the new covenant with man was struck with Christ.

I seem to remember that after that point the indication is that the Spectre entity didn't appear until Corrigan, but I'm sure there's plenty of room to wiggle in there (and since its been awhile, I could be misremembering.)
ddf
Wiggle room is probably what I'd emphasize. Perhaps some New Earth rationale to explain distilling the best elements of past portrayals to raise the ceiling a little.
I think that there's an inherent problem with believing that the Spectre *should* wipe out all evil. It kinda misses the point of free will and I think (personal interpretation here) that is why the Spectre force is so hard to control. Not because it must kill all criminals, but that it has to enact some form of earthly justice on SOME criminals as a reminder to others that they have a freedom to choose good or evil and face a heavenly justice.

Besides which, we know that the Spectre should met out ironic deaths so pedophiles would be trampled to death by giant baby dolls.
ddf
Couldn't agree more.

Giant baby dolls...LOL. Nice work.
I actually liked that aspect of DeMatteis run. I think the thing is he was still doing what the Spectre is supposed to do with his redemption angle and that's why he was able to do it.

That's actually one of my problems with the way Cris Allen has been used as the Spectre, to be honest. It was an interesting dynamic to set it up where he had to confront his son as a murderer, but the outcome, IMO, was all wrong and I think that its ultimately put me in a position where I'm not terribly interested in this iteration of the character.
ddf
I'll also agree here...I think the Spectre is in a rut with Cris Allen coming on but I'd attribute that, again, more to a real lack of imagination and execution. I don't expect Rucka is going to major on the far-out, cosmic bits (based on is body of work it doesn't strike me as his interest) but hopefully he can at least revisit Cris's character and give people a reason to care in that regard.
 
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Old June 11th, 2008   Amentep is offline   #22
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Yeah I'm hoping Rucka can get me to like this iteration of The Spectre (I don't have any background with Cris before he became the Spectre so there's been no resonance on that front).
 
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Old June 11th, 2008   Patrick Gerard is offline   #23
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Yeah I'm hoping Rucka can get me to like this iteration of The Spectre (I don't have any background with Cris before he became the Spectre so there's been no resonance on that front).
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Ah. Been looking for this awhile:

The Word aka the Spectre's Older Brother

Looks like the Spectre except he wears red.

We know that Zauriel serves the archangel embodying love.

Now... Fun thought:

Red - Rage, Green - Willpower, Orange - Greed, Yellow - Fear, Blue - Hope, Indigo - Compassion, Violet - Love.

Now, I'm not suggesting DCU angels USE the "emotional energy spectrum" as a power source.

I'm suggesting that the color of their cloak is determined by a necessary quality they must possess to do their job. Their emotional energy would be MANIFESTED from the color, not derived from it.
 
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Old June 11th, 2008   Amentep is offline   #24
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There's actually that bit in Neil Gaiman's Books of Magic that implies the Spectre is in actuality the archangel Raguel in which - if memory serves me, which it may not - the group of angels shown have different colored hoods.

Anyone have the book handy to see if the 6 shown correspond to the color spectrum (I bet they do just because its easy to distinguish the basic colors).

Of course then you get into problems identifying who the 7 archangels are for the DCU and why some of them are associated with what we generally consider to be "wrong/unholy" things (Sariel who in some traditions lusted after human women might fit for orange/greed or Samael in entirely different traditions as Red/Rage (he was the "severity of God") but...)
 
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Old June 11th, 2008   Navydeepsea is offline   #25
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"Crispus"? I can't even get past that name. Maybe as a verb, as in "he will crisp us," but otherwise, the character just screams "stand-in for the real Spectre."
ddf
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Amen Bro. Jim Corrigan how I miss em! I think the Spectre should remain an "on call" big gun to be brought in to fight REALLY BADASS magical threats. One's even Fate needs help with. I loved the story in JSA when Hal-Spec came back to fight the "King of Tears". "Even though I thought he should have come in and DESTROYED both Sorrow AND the King. Thought that use of him was pretty appropriate........
 
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Old June 12th, 2008   zekeman1 is offline   #26
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jim corrigan's spectre was destroyed several times in the past to go to his "final resting place. " his was the best written and recieved spectre. i would bring him back in a heartbeat, but i would have him unhappy about the decision.
 
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Old June 13th, 2008   Diomedes1977 is offline   #27
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Spectre has killed Hawkman son and her wife and also Nabu and Shazam who were close to the JSA because their conection with Dr Fate and Captain Marvel,I dont think he can join the team like that.
 
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Old June 13th, 2008   Jake1823 is offline   #28
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jim corrigan's spectre was destroyed several times in the past to go to his "final resting place. " his was the best written and recieved spectre. i would bring him back in a heartbeat, but i would have him unhappy about the decision.
ddf
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The new Spectre's barely had any exposure. The character of Cris Allen was well received in the critically acclaimed Gotham Central, and I'm sure Rucka can work the same magic on him as the Spectre.
 
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Old August 15th, 2008   narm00 is offline   #29
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As I remember it, the Ostrander/Mandrake series establishes that the Spectre was hostless and acted directly on God's orders up until the new covenant with man was struck with Christ.

I seem to remember that after that point the indication is that the Spectre entity didn't appear until Corrigan, but I'm sure there's plenty of room to wiggle in there (and since its been awhile, I could be misremembering.)
ddf
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Apologies for bumping this, but wanted to answer.

The Spectre was first bonded to a human host following the Crucifixion - an Indian man named Chakara. He eventually got corrupted, and the Spectre was removed from him (although he managed to find redemption). The implication of the Ostrander/Mandrake series was that there have been Spectre hosts throughout history - a 3rd century AD woman, a French Revolution-era host, a Wild West-era Native American - up to the present day.
 
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Old August 15th, 2008   JRM is offline   #30
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And speaking of Vertigo, I too dislike the embargo. While characters shouldn't interact so much that the separate line becomes pointless, there should be at least lip-service paid to the fact that Vertigo (at least some of it) IS part of the DCU. Swamp Thing, Constantine, Morpheus, and Lucifer all exist in the DCU, whether it's acknowledged or not.
ddf
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Agreed here, and a lot of noteable plot points, do/did tie between the two. Is there a better explaination for this other than Dan's "We can't get them back?" line that he trots out at conventions.

Jim
 
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Old August 15th, 2008   JRM is offline   #31
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The new Spectre's barely had any exposure. The character of Cris Allen was well received in the critically acclaimed Gotham Central, and I'm sure Rucka can work the same magic on him as the Spectre.
ddf
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Unfortunately, the Jim-Cris is just another battle in the never-ending organial vs Legacy wars. One side refuses to let go of the past while the other side demands wants to see the new developments. Humm <sigh>

I'm as bad as others at times, on this one I'm neutral, so I can see the big picture.
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