Admittedly, I am not much of an Animal Man fan. Which is ironic as I love animals to no end. I have studies zoology and taxonomy all my life. I am even a non-leather wearing vegetarian (don't worry, I don't care what other people choose to do) Beyond that, my favorite superheroes or sci-fi interests are always the ones that are heavily animal themed (i.e. Beast, Beast Boy, The Beast Wars, Ninja Turtles...) However there were always many things that kept me from liking Buddy.
Some were little things like his costume, his attitude his code name... All small things that even bundled together wouldn't be enough to really sour me on a character. What always bothered me most about Buddy was how his powers worked.
He would tap into a near by bird and this would give him the power to fly. However he would fly by zooming around Superman style. No animal has the ability to simply will themselves through space (I mean dimensional space, not outer space) all animals that fly achieve it through force of their limbs. Now some would say it would look silly to have him flapping his arms, but I argue that effortlessly zipping around and calling it bird flight is equally ridiculous. When he taps the speed of say a horse or a cheetah he runs only with his legs, tho neither animal has the strength in only their legs to achieve those speeds. I have even seen him him constrain enemies while using the power of a boa constrictor to help hold them. But he was using his arms. if he is tapping into a boa constrictor, his arms should in no way be more useful than they already were.
Then there are issues of when he borrows an animal's strength. Some times he uses big strong animals like gorillas or elephants, where the strength gained in direct to that animal. But other times I have seen him harness proportionate strength of animals who are strong for their size, but too small to be any human threat like say an ant or a turtle. This always frustrated me to know end as having both seemed far too convenient and convenient heroes never sold with me (If you think I'm being hard on Buddy, don't even ask me about Superman)
Anyway, I have come to understand that Buddy's powers now work in a different way and I'm quite curious to know if they have been changed in a manner hat would rectify my major grievance with his character. Like I said, I love animals ore than most, and for better or worse buddy has basically been made the poster child of all thing animal in the DCU (I personally believe such a title would better fit Beast Boy, but my opinion only means so much) so I would really like to like Animal Man. What can you guys tell me?