By The Mighty Monarch 2 Comments
There was always something about 'Brightest Day' that felt off. It's been consistently good quality, but rarely a favorite among the tie-ins, and yet it continues to sell very high. Every issue always has a large group of people complain about which story seems to be getting too much focus and that they hate that particular story. After counting the number of pages each character's story is developed on, I've determined that they're currently all approximately equal. (Except Firestorm, but we've still got 10 issues to go.)
Martian Manhunter -65
Firestorm -49After thinking about it, the secret hit me. All 5 of the characters (counting Hawkman and Hawkgirl as one since they essentially share a story, and also a backstory.) aren't very big in mainstream but have sizable devoted cult followings. Aquaman gets a lot of grief in the general public for his premise and seeming uselessness in their eye, Martian Manhunter is probably the least well known main Justice League member, and rarely uses the full extent of his powers in adapted media, Firestorm's just not well known outside of more hardcore comic fandom, and the same goes for Deadman. But all 5 of these characters have very extensive history's, and have built up hardcore fans among the older fanbase. This is the reason Brightest Day has so many people buying it, but rarely gets consistently high reviews. People who are extremely dedicated to one of the 5 will be following the series, but disappointed every time their character doesn't show up. I myself rarely put this comic high on my priority list unless I know it'll be a J'onn heavy issue. I don't hate the others, but they just don't excite me the same way, and that seems to be the case for a lot of fans. What Brightest Day, the comic, is, is a way to reignite support for these characters who are underrated on the surface, and try to bring them to greater prominence outside their devoted fanbase, and with this analysis, I think the choice of characters was brilliant. It allows them to sell very well, and please a wider variety of fans in small pockets of joy. Even if you don't like one or more of the stories, as long as you're a big fan of another you'll be really excited every time that story resurfaces. And the seemingly random order of use ensures that you need to keep up with the series so you won't miss those moments. I for one don't hate any of the stories in Brightest Day, although the Hawk's story doesn't excite me that much, and Aquaman's has some flaws of its own. But what this series has done, besides provide me with Martian Manhunter stories to read, is make me interested in Firestorm, when I couldn't care less before. Deadman's risen to prominence in my brain, even though he's lost his premise, his story is my second favorite in the series. Thus, Brightest Day isn't going to be the best comic, but it's doing a good thing, and I for one respect it quite a lot, even if Generation Lost is a much better tie-in than the main title itself.