Sunday, October 21, 2007

Why I'm not upset about Big Barda dying

I am not as annoyed as some comic book fans of the off-panel death of Big Barda in her kitchen. At least for this post I won't be addressing the typical contempt that publishers seem to hold for a good portion of their customer base. WFA has many links to the pulling of this month's tiger's tail perpetrated by DC, so check them out.

Instead, I'll go over what I think is happening with the New Gods over all.

Only those not familiar with comic books will believe for a second that Steve Rogers will not return as Captain America, Superboy won't be back in some form and that the New Gods will be dead forever.

I have no doubt that DC is merely rebooting the sometimes campy, though brilliant, characters that Jack Kirby created. I may be wrong, but I am expecting that the New Gods pantheon will be re-imagined somewhat like the finale to DC's Lords of the Ultra-Realm in order to breathe a new life into the concept and extend their marketability. It is possible that DC is re-creating them in order to diminish the hold Kirby or his estate may have on the concept, be it legally or in the minds of die hard fans.

Would I like Barda and pals to remain static and never change? Sure I would. I love them as they are. But even in the current creative climate of fast and loose continuity all characters must evolve or at least have the illusion of growth. There are some amazingly bad and goofy concepts in there and many characters, like Desaad, are criminally misused and weakly portrayed at best. A re-imagining is probably the best way to go about making the Fourth World characters a bit more interesting and contemporary.

So I figure that what is being torn out of the New Gods isn't so much as their hearts, but the "God Essence" that makes them what they are. The body is merely a shell that is unimportant and can be left behind. Of course, knowing Starlin, the divine spark that is being forcibly recalled from the gods is probably being used as fuel for some ultimate weapon of destruction by a villain or anti-hero. In the end I suspect that all the captured souls will be reformed into an all new pantheon of Gods for DC to play with.


  1. The impermanence of comic book deaths does not diminish the tragedy of Big Barda's death.

    I suggest an appropriate period of mourning.

    Dibs on the Mega-Rod!!!

  2. I just don't understand how Marvel and DC can consider that killing off characters, major or minor, has any dramatic value anymore.

  3. The last time it really meant anything to a reader was for Warlock, Captain Marvel and Phoenix.

  4. Thank you for posting the sanest response I've seen to Death of the New Gods #1 yet.

    I understand and agree with the idea of reinventing the characters into something marketable. I'm still going to miss them. :(

  5. I posted about her death this morning. I am upset
    because female character get shot through the spine or are knocked off.

  6. No matter what, Barda should have gone down fighting. She was/is a warrior.

    Of/c she will outlast us all, but dead in a kitchen apron? Ugh.

  7. I've been a serious Barda booster since picking up her first appearance in Mister Miracle a looooong time ago, and her no-BS version of the superwoman warrior made a huge impression on me, especially at the time. I'm going to miss her, but let's face it: this is comics, so it's only a matter of time until she's back in some way or other. I just hope they don't mess with her outfit, especially the helmet. Sheer visual genius.

  8. Nice that she got some non-combat stage time before being killed, though. These days, if I see Barda in a comic, I know Parallax or Pariah or a two-page mural of villains escaping from prison is not far behind.

    Say, whatever happened to Sleez?

  9. Here's the thing;whatever they replace the New Gods with,odds are they're going to suck.As a matter of fact,if you read the Justice League issues that were out afterward,where three knock-offs turned up,you know they suck.Even the ones that were seen during the lead in to the death of Batman,that whole anti-life-equation-takes-over-the-world story,were only shadows of Kirby's creations.Jim Starlin,who seems to have become the go-to guy when you want to kill off any cosmic-powered character(s) allegedly had plans for some kind of big reveal but so far,years later,nothing's happened,other than that DC Universe build-a-figure Imperiex.Not to sound peeved,but I'm unimpressed,and a little disgusted.


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