Time for a New Writer

Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

This article (read: RANT) includes spoilers for Red Lanterns #16. If you haven't read it yet, and actually care about it, go read it before moving onward. If you don't care about it, or have already read it, read on.

So, people who know me and follow my posts know that I am a Red Lantern fan – a big Red Lantern fan.

Maybe the biggest Red Lantern fan.

Or the only Red Lantern fan, it's hard to tell sometimes.

I have defended the title from the very beginning against overwhelmingly negative reviews. Cast aside accusations about the title being wayward and poorly written. I have genuinely enjoyed it since #1, I love Atrocitus and Dex-Starr, and I ADORE Bleez. I have (as far as I can tell) read her every single significant appearance. As can be seen in my lists, she is my second-favorite character, behind only Harley Quinn (who has seen enough abuse in the last two years).

So what if the title is wayward? It's using some very new characters, and has up until this point been doing so nicely. Atrocitus is the brooding, sullen, tortured, savage mastermind. Bleez is the cold, haughty, imperious, sarcastic second-in-command. Rankorr is the privileged nancy-boy.

But, more and more, I am starting to suspect that Peter Milligan's first dog's name was “Jack”, and that his mother's maiden name is “Moore”, because Rankorr has become the biggest Mary Sue I have ever seen in my life.

Reasonings? I have many.

Intelligence: Rankorr became the first human Red Lantern a while back, Milligan's only actual addition to the roster. Now, generally, the instant a RL gains the ring, they lose their mind. Become mindless, raging maniacs – or at least, until they get dipped into the Blood Ocean. The only character besides Atrocitus to show sentience before the Blood Ocean dip was Bleez, who, while still borderline-mindless, had enough intelligence left over to retain her ambition and arrogance.

Rankorr, on the other hand, has none of these problems. He attracts a red ring but pretends he doesn't have it, he retains full human intelligence without assistance from Atrocitus or anyone else. He's just better, because why not?

No reason has ever been given for him retaining his intelligence.

Constructs: Rankorr can make constructs. Magically.

Now, he isn't the first RL to make constructs – before the reboot, Bleez was clearly shown being able to make simple constructs and use them to great effect.

But not anymore. Milligan has specifically retconned that because nobody is allowed to make constructs besides Rankorr. Only he can, because he's the best, and if anyone else could do things Rankorr can he wouldn't be as super-duper-special as he obviously has to be.

This has also led to him being 'special' among Atrocitus and the corps. Big Red offers him special tasks because of his constructs, which are strange, foreign things to him, apparently. He gets to be the golden boy... just because.

No reason has ever been given for Rankorr being able to create constructs. Apparently, the secret is in his blood, however. Or at least Bleez guesses.

Too Sexy For His Ring: Rankorr's sexiness and coveted constructs are so powerful that they can easily destroy years of character development and personality. This was the straw that broke the camel's back, here – he has been acting like a Mary Sue since he first appeared, and I found it distasteful but I tolerated it. Now, he is bringing other characters down so that he can look better than them.

Most recently, in Red Lanterns #16, Bleez utterly subjugates herself before him, willing to desperately whore herself out to him in order to get some of Rankorr's blood, which will magically give her the ability to make the constructs she could already make before the reboot.

This was a moment I was waiting for as Jack Moore became a more and more insufferable author avatar who was perfect at everything. The moment when Milligan uses one of my favorite characters to become his personal sex-pet.

It was worse than I had even expected.

I was waiting for Bleez and Rankorr to bump uglies --- it was an absolute inevitability that I knew was coming. But it was worse. So much worse. Bleez tries to buddy up to Jack, saying she knows he wants “what she's selling” and doing a few sexy poses to entice him.

A little history on Bleez first, for those who are unfamiliar with her. Bleez's backstory involves being savagely (and really creepily) gangraped and tortured. Before that, she refused to take a suitor, being too proud to be itemized purely for her beauty. After becoming a Red Lantern, she was sensual – but not sexual. The mask she uses is to hide her face, and her sensuality is more closely tied with her intense, sadistic bloodlust. The closest she has come to a meaningful relationship was with the Star Sapphire Fatality, who offered to convert her to the Violet Corps and show her the way of Love. Despite being close to Fatality, Bleez ultimately declined in a violent fashion, showing that she is still tortured after her subjugation by the Sinestro Corps. She is an interesting character because she is both cold and fiery at once – this inaccessibility is part of her charm.

However, it did nothing to prevent her from trying to spread her legs for Rankorr.

Instead of taking her up on the deal, however, Rankorr says he “can't trust her with constructs” and flies off in disgust, leaving her screaming out in spite like a spoiled child.

This entire affair is nauseatingly out of character for her, and cements firmly in my mind that the writer of this title is willing to do anything – ANYTHING – to make Rankorr the best ever, even if it means destroying the characters Milligan didn't create.

And the more he does it, the more I hate Rankorr.

I'll keep reading until #18, which the solicits claim will have a “fight to the death between Bleez and Rankorr”. After that, we'll see if I keep reading this, now that my favorite character has become a spoiled sex-doll with no shame. I'm sure Rankorr will be leading the Red Lantern Corps by #20 at this rate.

Unless either Milligan gets a clue, or we get a new writer on the Red Lanterns title.

#1 Edited by Ravager4 (1627 posts) - - Show Bio

And the New 52 claims another character assassination.

#2 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@Ravager4 said:

And the New 52 claims another character assassination.

First Harley, now Bleez, next person on the list is Batwoman. Cross your fingers.

#3 Posted by Pyrogram (35074 posts) - - Show Bio

To be honest I did not know much about bleez, But this was very well written out and I understand your point of view, I know the feel to hate how a character is being portrayed wrong, I hope this only sorts itself out, but it may be looking the opposite way.

#4 Posted by akbogert (3193 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl: What about (allegedly -- I'm just citing other people here) Dick Grayson, Starfire, Tim Drake, and all the other characters who no longer exist at all?

Anyhow, I'm a little surprised how...contained you were earlier about this, because wow, this is worthy of "livid." I refuse to believe that a character with that kind of history would ever say these kinds of things. Wow. Just wow.

#5 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: Yeah, a lot of people are still pretty steamed about them. But they are not currently in my field of vision. :P

And yeah. I fumed about this all last night and all this morning. Technically I still am. It was an absurdly stupid handling of her character.

#6 Posted by akbogert (3193 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl: Oh, like I said, I'm surprised you didn't flip out more.

I got so angry over X-23 being in Avengers Arena that I actually almost threw up...and when the anger failed to subside I joined a comic community so I could vent about it to people who might potentially care. 284 posts later...well, I understand what it's like to be furious at what's being done to a character you adore.

#7 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: I have heard a lot of rage directed towards Avengers Arena. Just a bloodbath like Suicide Squad, only the characters don't get resurrected every issue (so far I think like one person has actually died in Suicide Squad).

#8 Posted by Avenging-X-Bolt (12506 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl said:

@akbogert: I have heard a lot of rage directed towards Avengers Arena. Just a bloodbath like Suicide Squad, only the characters don't get resurrected every issue (so far I think like one person has actually died in Suicide Squad).

Just wait till April aka DC WTF month

#9 Posted by Avenging-X-Bolt (12506 posts) - - Show Bio

I can understand the anger towards how Bleez is being treated. I haven't read Red Lanterns but Rankorr sounds like character i could like. it seems like he's spent his entire life controlling his violent rage so i could buy him having a measure of control as a Red Lantern. also, Rankorr is shown to be alive on the cover of Red Lanterns #19 so......well...y'know

#10 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@Avenging-X-Bolt: Well if Bleez dies I am dropping the title. So.

#11 Posted by RazzaTazz (9478 posts) - - Show Bio

I keep meaning to pick this title up again, though this makes me less sure.

Moderator
#12 Posted by Avenging-X-Bolt (12506 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl said:

@Avenging-X-Bolt: Well if Bleez dies I am dropping the title. So.

Completely Understandable

#13 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

Bump

#14 Posted by SC (12691 posts) - - Show Bio

Really stupid unfortunate creative decisions - however magnificent and beautiful blog! When was the last time Darkseid spread his legs and pulled up his manskirt and tried to plead for the Anti Life equation whilst cooing and proffering more than friendship! Don't worry if Rankorr kills Bleez blindfolded without trying (by putting his hand on her head as she rushes towards him fruitlessly) I am sure he will revive her with a kiss and butt grope and then she will mistake that as affection for him and then fall madly in love with him, he will teach her how to make constructs and then she will spend all day making constructs of Rankorr that she can gaze at lovingly while he goes off and be a total badass Red Lantern!

Moderator
#15 Posted by CrimsonAlchemist (410 posts) - - Show Bio

Wow i liked Bleez more as mindless angry monster than this not cool.

#16 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@SC: I hope you're being sarcastic. D: I can never tell with you. :P

@CrimsonAlchemist: Exactly. I'd rather go back to her feral Emerald Warriors version if this is what she is turning into.

#17 Edited by lykopis (10756 posts) - - Show Bio

You have got to be kidding me.

This is just so...-- it's not just wrong, it's character assassination to a grotesque degree. What was going on between the people responsible for allowing this to go to panel? Not one of them thought this might be...incorrect? Wrong? Disgusting? Repugnant?

My condolences JG. Bleez sounded like a character I could have seen myself falling for. This warped fantasy interpretation of what should be a wonderful character who retained and built strength despite horrific tragedy is too painful, even for me.

This is going to bother me for a long, long time.

#18 Posted by Ellie_Knightfall (4818 posts) - - Show Bio

WTF...

#19 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@lykopis: Fortunately, even if DC won't really hire me, I am writing her now. So maybe now that Milligan has gone insane in his lust to suck Rankorr's ****, Bleez fans can take condolences in my interpretation in JSA.

But yeah... it's... humiliating to think that people would actually go for that. That they'd find it acceptable. Like someone must have gone "What will the fans think?" and the editors went "FANS? WHAT FANS?" and just gave it the okay, because continuity is stupid and worthless and characters mean nothing unless you made them.

#20 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@Ellie_Knightfall said:

WTF...

Yeah, it's a lot like that. With a little more uncontrollable urge to strangle.

#21 Edited by Blood1991 (8098 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl: This seems to be a major issue facing the women of DC. I wanna know why the writers are doing this to them?

#22 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

Big Red Lantern fan here as well and I understand all your need to be enraged, just as I am. This is unfortunately just another reason why New 52 has fallen flat of its many attempts to do something successful. Hate the way Bleez is being handled, and I don't know...maybe Milligan just isn't caring much at this point anymore. I feel the story picked up fire with issue 12 when we saw the Inversions reborn, but now this? Don't get me wrong, I'll hold onto this title until its done, but at this point I'm kinda hoping its sooner rather than later. All the more reason for me to hope that things get back to pre-Flashpoint sooner rather than later and call me crazy but I still think it can happen.

#23 Posted by JonSmith (3988 posts) - - Show Bio

For the record, Rankorr's control has been KIND OF explained: Whereas other Red Lanterns gain their rings from a sudden upset of Rage, rage so pure and of such great magnitude that it summons a Red Ring to them, Jack, according to his brother, has ALWAYS been angry, but has been controlling it, keeping it from surfacing. So when he was finally pushed over the edge, the Ring was summoned, but Jack's used to controlling his Rage.

Hence, why the other Lanterns aside from Atrocitus need a dip in the Blood Ocean: Atrocitus spent centuries or so with his Rage before he forged the Lantern and Ring. He learned to control it when necessary to further his goals. So when he forged the Ring, he could control himself without a dip. Same basic principle with Rankorr: Because Jack has his brother's temper, but far better self control, he knows how to control rage.

Now as for the constructs... Yeah, that's crap. If Atrocitus could create constructs too, then I'd accept it. With Rankorr being the only one, I'm calling shenannigans.

And as for Bleez... I stand by what I said about her just manipulating him. Once she had what she wanted, she would have killed him. Painfully. Slowly. And making extensive use of her new constructs. With her background, she really shouldn't have been so willing to try that method of persuasion. But her reaction afterwards when he rejects her? Of screaming at him about how others would have accepted her? Yeah, that perfectly fits her cultured 'I'm a perfect princess' background.

#24 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@JonSmith: Controlling normal anger and controlling Red Rage once you've had your entire circulatory system flooded with it, are two totally different things. Rankorr shows no signs that he even feels angry. Atrocitus had billions of years, blood magic, and also CREATED the battery (then may have suffered with the rage for who knew how long). He also has a far greater reason for his rage.

The constructs ARE crap, especially since they could make them preboot, but had it retconned so only he can.

With her background, she really shouldn't have been so willing to try that method of persuasion.

This is my big issue. She could have shouted spitefully at him about something else and I wouldn't have cared. But the fact that she was upset that he declined her immediate offer of vagina is the bit that upsets me, and that she tried absolutely nothing (threats, coercion, etc.) before (not) doing it enrages me further. I'm not gonna feel better about this issue.

#25 Posted by Avenging-X-Bolt (12506 posts) - - Show Bio

@JonSmith said:

For the record, Rankorr's control has been KIND OF explained: Whereas other Red Lanterns gain their rings from a sudden upset of Rage, rage so pure and of such great magnitude that it summons a Red Ring to them, Jack, according to his brother, has ALWAYS been angry, but has been controlling it, keeping it from surfacing. So when he was finally pushed over the edge, the Ring was summoned, but Jack's used to controlling his Rage.

Hence, why the other Lanterns aside from Atrocitus need a dip in the Blood Ocean: Atrocitus spent centuries or so with his Rage before he forged the Lantern and Ring. He learned to control it when necessary to further his goals. So when he forged the Ring, he could control himself without a dip. Same basic principle with Rankorr: Because Jack has his brother's temper, but far better self control, he knows how to control rage.

Now as for the constructs... Yeah, that's crap. If Atrocitus could create constructs too, then I'd accept it. With Rankorr being the only one, I'm calling shenannigans.

And as for Bleez... I stand by what I said about her just manipulating him. Once she had what she wanted, she would have killed him. Painfully. Slowly. And making extensive use of her new constructs. With her background, she really shouldn't have been so willing to try that method of persuasion. But her reaction afterwards when he rejects her? Of screaming at him about how others would have accepted her? Yeah, that perfectly fits her cultured 'I'm a perfect princess' background.

+1

#26 Edited by JonSmith (3988 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl said:

Controlling normal anger and controlling Red Rage once you've had your entire circulatory system flooded with it, are two totally different things. Rankorr shows no signs that he even feels angry. Atrocitus had billions of years, blood magic, and also CREATED the battery (then may have suffered with the rage for who knew how long). He also has a far greater reason for his rage.

While it's different in scale, it's no different in method. To use an underestimating metaphor: Say you learned to drive a car, got good at it, really good, then forced to drive, say... an eighteen wheeler. Different scale, but enough lessons carry over to give you a handhold. Same basic principle: Rankorr learned how to control his normal human Rage, so when he got flushed with the plasma, yes, he went berserk, as shown with his burning of an officer and fight with Gardner. But by the time he reached the Red Lanterns, he was acclimating and learning how to apply what he'd already learned, to what he was going through. As for not showing that he even feels angry: That's the point. As his brother says, Rankorr was ALWAYS angry. He just never showed it. Once he was able to apply the lessons he learned to the burning blood in his veins, he was able to put up the same appearance he had before the ring: No anger shown until it's unleashed.

#27 Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6093 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl said:

@Ravager4 said:

And the New 52 claims another character assassination.

First Harley, now Bleez, next person on the list is Batwoman. Cross your fingers.

As long as J.H. Williams and W. Haden Blackman are in charge, I think we'll be alright.

If they announce their departure, that'll be the time to start worrying.

#28 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@V_Scarlotte_Rose: Last I heard Blackman is sick of Batwoman and wants to escape but DC won't let him.

#29 Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6093 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl said:

@V_Scarlotte_Rose: Last I heard Blackman is sick of Batwoman and wants to escape but DC won't let him.

O_O Where did you see this?

#30 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@V_Scarlotte_Rose said:

@Joygirl said:

@V_Scarlotte_Rose: Last I heard Blackman is sick of Batwoman and wants to escape but DC won't let him.

O_O Where did you see this?

I forgetz. *hides*

#31 Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6093 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl said:

@V_Scarlotte_Rose said:

@Joygirl said:

@V_Scarlotte_Rose: Last I heard Blackman is sick of Batwoman and wants to escape but DC won't let him.

O_O Where did you see this?

I forgetz. *hides*

Hmm. Hopefully the source was wrong anyway.

J.H. will keep her safe even if W. leaves though.

#32 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@V_Scarlotte_Rose: People got PISSED when W. left if you recall.

#33 Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6093 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl:Left what?

#34 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@V_Scarlotte_Rose: During Drown the World H. wasn't around (or is he the writer? The artist was gone. I think it's the artist I mean). And everyone had an aneurysm about it.

#35 Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6093 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl: I think we're both confused here.

J.H. Williams and W. Haden Blackman co-write Batwoman.

J.H. Williams is also the main artist, but he didn't do To Drown The World, issue 15, and he won't be doing art from #18-24 I think.

I think a lot of people did get pretty miffed about him not drawing To Drown The World. If it wasn't in the non-linear format, it would have been better. But yeah, Trevor McCarthy and Amy Reeders art doesn't compare well to J.H. Williams. They're good artists, but J.H. Williams is just so good, he outshines most other people.

I hope the next arc will be linear. I'll miss J.H. Williams art for that arc, but he'll be back for #25 I think. He's still the co-writer with W. Haden Blackman though.

#36 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

@V_Scarlotte_Rose: Then I do think it is J.H. Williams who was sick of it, which is why he is breaking away likely.

#37 Edited by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6093 posts) - - Show Bio

@Joygirl: From old interviews I've read, it was planned from the start that him and Amy Reeder would alternate as artist arc-to-arc, and when Amy Reeder left, Trevor McCarthy took over as alternate artist.

In his off-Batwoman-time this time, he's doing the art for the new Sandman mini-series.

Edited. Just checked his Twitter. He'll continue writing, and will be doing covers again from #20, after Trevor McCarthy does #18-19. He also said, "we've got some surprises in store for longtime Batwoman readers ;^)". Could this mean Alice is coming back? It could be part of the "Shocking Family Revelation" that is mentioned in the solicit for #19. :)

#38 Posted by Joygirl (18476 posts) - - Show Bio

The saga continues: http://www.comicvine.com/profile/joygirl/blog/taste-my-rage-and-hate/90739/

#39 Posted by ScrubbedOut (35 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't know much about the Red Lanterns Pre-Nu52. I actually started reading them because of the reboot I figured it would be easier. That being said. I don't know what Bleez was like.. but from the Nu52.. I have no idea how anyone could come to like such a character. She's irritating and annoying at best. I groan when she gets any page time. But, for new readers like myself, it's a story and it's being told quite well. I'm sorry one of your favorite characters has evolved into something you despise. But, maybe, just maybe, it's for the good of the title. (If it's drawing in new readers.)

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