Robot 6

DC and CBR end ‘B&B'; DC launches its own ‘show and tell’

"B&B logo, by Joe Quinones

“B&B logo, by Joe Quinones

Shortly after Comic Book Resources announced DC Comics will no longer participate in a monthly Q&A feature, the publisher has launched “What’s New in The New 52″ on its own press blog.

CBR’s four-month-old “B&B” column featured Editor-In-Chief Bob Harras and Editorial Director Bobbie Chase answering questions from Staff Writer Josie Campbell and readers about series launches and cancellations, story developments and, occasionally, controversial decisions. But in an editor’s note appended to today’s installment, CBR wrote, “the DC team has made it clear to CBR that discussing some of the more controversial debates surrounding the company and the comics community is not something they feel comfortable doing in this format, and ultimately they decided to no longer participate in this feature.”

The inaugural installment of DC’s weekly “What’s New New in The New 52″ is devoted to Harras’ brief discussion of changes in character designs between a preview for Constantine #1 and the release of the issue, and a first look at Papa Midnight.

“The title pretty much says it all – this is where we get to play show and tell,” he wrote by way of introduction. “New looks, new designs, new villains, new heroes … See the trend? The New 52 is about trumping expectations and keeping readers on their toes. Every week, you’ll get a glimpse of that here.

However, why the feature appears on the DC blog intended for press rather than the one dedicated to fans isn’t explained.

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Comments

16 Comments

“Whats new in the New 52″

How about nothing, it’s just recycled garbage.

Guess they couldn’t handle the tough questions and criticisms.

It was a pretty worthless feature anyway, given the non-answers they gave to every question they were asked.

None of this matters. The best public relations move they could make right now is to simply stop acting like douchebags.

Good for them. Newssites can’t have it both ways. You can’t rely on hit-baiting articles that are nothing more than promotions while also dumping on the publisher elsewhere on the site. I wouldn’t support CBR either. No worries though, no matter what’s going on in comics or elsewhere, the final story on Friday that lasts until Monday will always be the Marvel’s Axel Alonso wankfest. No bias there.

Not a very classy move. This looks like another example of how disconnected from fans the publisher is. Taking it back to their website tells me that the information they are sharing is all promotional babble to sell books. Sure, that’s what they are in business to do, but GREAT stories sell a lot of books. My kids won’t spend $3.99 on a single, monthly comic book. They’ll save it and go to Game Stop for a USED game.

I thought the column was pretty useless anyway. Harras and Chase, I thought, came off as idiots and really never answered questions directly. I mean, really, who laughs that much while being interviewed? Even in print it came off like nervous laughter. I felt like I knew less about the company after reading the columns than beforehand. It won’t be missed but I do feel like this is just going to alienate some of the fans further from the product.

And this just reflect the state of disarray of the comics division of DC today.

They would’ve cracked if interviewed or critiqued by Jay Sherman

Pu$$ies

I dunno. I always get annoyed with journalists when they ambush an interviewee with a question that was apparently agreed to be off-limits before the interview. Just in the last week, David Letterman had Lindsay Lohan on his show, and he probed her with some questions about her alcohol rehabilitation which she clearly didn’t want to answer. My recollection is that she called him out on it–“We agreed before the show not to talk about this” or something.

I agree that DC *should* be prepared to address hard-hitting questions–they inevitably come up every convention season–but if they had some pregame rules about what questions would be allowed and CBR violated that, then shame on CBR. That’s how the interview came off to me.

Adam: Yeah, but David Letterman’s not a journalist. If Harras and Chase agreed to meet regularly with the staff of a comics news site, they should have expected to be asked about, y’know, comics news. It’s basically the comics equivalent of the president doing a press conference: he runs the whole country, but he doesn’t get to choose what questions get asked, only how he answers them.

CBR may do a lot of free publicity for DC, but they aren’t beholden to DC to pussyfoot around controversial issues because CBR’s ultimate customer isn’t DC, it’s CBR’s readers, and they obviously want to know. And it’s not like this is out of left field…DC has hundreds of Cup o’ Joe columns to look at and see how many times Quesada’s feet were held to the fire when Marvel stirred up controversy.

The bottom line is that DC seems to think if only the comics press quit talking about their foolish editorial decisions, all these controversies would disappear, instead of tackling the root problem and not making so many foolish decisions in the first place.

@Jason,

Again, I have no problem with DC being asked tough questions. They’re not necessarily “accountable” to their customers–they make comics, you buy comics, the end–but it’s better PR and less criticism if they do. I think that stunts like this make them look pretty stupid if they’re dodging stuff.

Having said that, CBR *is* beholden to DC if they want to be able to advertise an exclusive interview to their readers. DC gets publicity; CBR gets an exclusive interview. The alternative is that DC pulls out and goes to Newsarama or somebody else that’s willing to meet their terms. If CBR and DC had an agreement that a precondition of the interviews was that “controversial” questions wouldn’t be asked, and CBR dishonored that, then that’s pretty lousy of them. I don’t think you can blame CBR’s faults on DC’s own lousy behavior.

Diane Nelson has put the wrong people in charge of DC Comics.

She knows alot about movies but little about comics.

DC Comics, they still publish stuff?

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