A Study in Bronze: Introduction

I need to get back on track.

Allow me to explain myself a bit: I started the Obsessive Geek Blog mostly to start fresh with this whole blogging hobby. My first blog, One Man’s Obsession(s), was something I kept up for years but never was able to get a stable readership for. That’s entirely my fault; I let the blog fall by the wayside for various reasons (writer’s block, disinterest, procrastination, ect). So when I discovered that my page view figures for OMO(s) were being goosed up by some anonymous Russian spam site, I decided it was time to move on to green pastures.

But it seems all I’ve done is trade procrastinating on one hosting site for another. As of this writing, I haven’t posted anything regularly on the Obsessive Geek Blog since December of last year. That’s just pure, unadulterated laziness, right there; Sloth of the highest accord. We must do better, Jordan. We must do better.

And I thought, in my eternal solitude, that a project was just the thing I needed. Yes, a project. Something to keep me focused. Something that can keep my typing fingers going and my passions alight.

So, what do I do? Another marathon month, like I did last October? No, I need a project without a definite end date; a good, long undertaking.

I need, I need…..

Then suddenly, a week or so ago, a truly unique feeling came over me. An intoxicating siren call I had not heard in years, pulling me towards what I believe now is my ultimate destiny. I wanted to read a Batman story. Not just any Batman story. I wanted to read….

Joker'sFiveWayRevenge

And the Dark Knight provided.

….and my eyes opened. An idea, great and powerful, took hold of my brain. It refuses to let go, no matter my procrastinating nature.

And so, without further ado, I bring to you

 

A Study in Bronze:

A Very Informal Survey of Comic Books

From 1969-1986

 

Now, I’m sure you all have some question as to what the hell I’m doing. As such, I’m going to be an incredibly presumptuous jackass and do a little Q and A for you, theoretical reader.

  • So, why are you doing this?

As I stated earlier, I first and foremost want to give myself a project to get myself back on track with my blog. I’ve basically ignored the poor thing for months and I don’t want to spend another minute just doing nothing with it.

Second, I just find the Bronze Age of Comics fascinating. It, from my perspective, seemed like the most fluid, for lack of a better term, of the pre-Crisis comic books periods: socially conscious, yes, but not married to the violent spasms towards “realism” and “maturity” that still crop up to this day. Being a time period that lasted for the better portion of two decades, it changed as the culture, changed, while still retaining its own identity. Not to mention that there are some damn good stories going on in that time period.

Third is nostalgia. Not for the ’70s, of course; I was born on May 4th, 1990. But I did watch an astonishing amount of cartoons growing up in the ‘90s, and those cartoons were, to varying degrees, influenced by this particular time period of comic book history than anything that cropped in the Dark Age. I remember reading Amazing Spider-Man #121 and #122, known as “The Night Gwen Stacy Died”, and “The Green Goblin’s Last Stand” respectively, and getting this funny feeling that melodramatic dialogue and tone felt familiar somehow. Surprise, surprise, I find that the same type of melodramatic delivery was used in the ‘90s Spider-Man cartoon show

That’ not all, of course; there was also the much venerated Batman: The Animated Series, which hued more to the tone of Bronze Age than anything happening to the Dark Knight in the ‘90s, be it in his comics or his live action blockbusters. Hell, B:TAS straight up adapted several Bronze Age stories, including The Laughing Fish (which sprinkled together bits of its titular comics tale with the earlier published “Joker’s Five Way Revenge”), one of my favorite episodes of the series.

And it goes without saying that without Claremont’s run the X-Men would not be the powerhouse franchise it is/was. So I have engendered a sort of affection for the time period, even if I didn’t live through it myself.

  • What Will You Be Covering?

Generally, I’ll be covering comic books published from the late 1970s to around 1986 from the “Big Two”, DC Comics and Marvel Comics. I will do this until

A: I feel satisfied in my coverage of the time period

Or

B: I drive myself hopelessly insane in this undertaking.

And that doesn’t mean I’ll only be covering mainstream American comics exclusively. Hell, I won’t even be covering comic books exclusively: other comic related media that became popular or warped the public perception of certain characters will be covered as well (i.e. yes, Superman: the Movie is going to be a subject of my informal analysis at one point).

  • When will these posts come out?

When they’re done; I’m not even going to pretend that I can keep up to a schedule while blogging. I will try, repeat, try to get one post out every Monday night, but I make no promises.

  • Will you be covering everything issue by issue?

To quote Will Smith in mid to late 90s’: oh hell no! Sometimes we’ll be doing an issue by issue analysis, and others I’ll be giving brief summaries. Have to at least try to keep my sanity.

  • Where Will You Begin?

We will begin Detective Comics #395; when Denny O’Neil began his writing duties for the World’s Greatest Detective.

  • Where Will You End?

I believe I’ll end with the Punisher’s five issue limited series.

So stay tuned, nerds and nerdettes, the best is yet to come

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