Today continues my quest to ditch comics not worth reading – but since there are some other topics I want to also discuss, I’m going after an easy target: Wicked Powered.
Now, the reason this is an easy choice is because Wicked Powered sorta kinda somewhat came to an end just over two months ago. Or, more accurately… the main heroes of the show came up against the main villain, who hurled them into a time loop!
At first, I was excited. I mean – this was a genuinely exciting scene, and for a comic that was filled with highs and lows, it was definitely one of the former. So we suddenly have our cast get rocketed back to the beginning of the strip, and I’m thinking it is pretty awesome. I’m carefully paying attention, keeping my eye out for any minor discrepancies or other hints of the characters realizing they are caught in a loop…
…and I find nothing. In fact, I realize, they are just flat-out rerunning the strip from the beginning without any changes. That’s cold.
This is confirmed, shortly thereafter, by a news-post explaining just that. The comic is no longer profitable, so they aren’t able to keep it going. Thus, they’ve set-up this clever form of reruns. And it is clever – it lets them keep the comic rolling without actually bringing it to a close, but leaves them able to step back in and start things up at any time, should they desire to do so. Not a bad setup.
Unfortunately, one of the biggest things the comic had in its favor was its momentum. It started with something of a mystery and kept the action going from there – and suddenly everything has come to a stop. Sure, the scenes are still rolling – but nothing that will keep a reader’s attention. Instead, it just helps make the comic’s weaknesses more obvious, and lets the reader come to understand that there wasn’t really a grand plan to find out – that the plot was just being played by ear from the beginning.
Let’s be honest now – this comic was never a great masterpiece. Like most of Crosby’s work, it tends to cater to the lowest common denominator – pretty much every punchline is a boob joke, a gay joke, or toilet humor. And, sure, there are people who are looking for that, and find that stuff hilarious… but I also suspect there are a handful like me, who were reading the comic because we were drawn to the spark of the story inside. Sure, it was a story filled with parody and zaniness and that didn’t take itself all that seriously – but that was part of the charm. And as long as that story was rolling, it was an interesting read – but the story is over, and dropped in such a way that it will be hard to start back up.
Now, don’t get me wrong – I’m not saying that Crosby and Gieni are by any means obligated to keep providing me with free comic material. It was created to make money from a sponsor, and when the money dried up, the story got set aside. Fair enough.
But I think the real shame is that they launched into the reruns without warning the reader – they left the reader, at least initially, with a different expectation than they deserved. If they had announced when the time-loop commenced that this was the comics way of going on hiatus, I think that would have been fine. But instead, the reader was tricked into thinking it was part of the story, and became invested in what was going on – only to find out there was nothing going on, nothing at all.
What does that mean, when all is said and done? It means any chances of a genuine return just took a pretty hard blow to the head. Because now the reader isn’t going to be as easily able to get invested back in the comic – they’ve already done so and had their interest fizzle. And so if, sometime down the road, the comic looks worth resuming, and they start things back up again, all the better for them…
…but we’re not sticking around to see it.