Comic books aren’t doing too great in terms of creating content for kids. Despite the general public’s perception that most comics are silly disposable fun, the modern day comic landscape is awash with dark, broody tales that you wouldn’t dare hand to a child.
This has produced some fantastic grim stories, but it’s leaving kids out in the cold. They can’t even read about their beloved super heroes, which dominate family friendly TV shows and movies, because their stories are just so damn miserable. The first issue of the re-launched Detective Comics began with Joker nailing his face to a wall, gruesome entertainment for adults but cringingly unsuitable material for a child.
Luckily we’re lately seeing a very gradual shift towards new all ages comics, and DC have got a new one that’s right about to launch: Scribblenauts Unmasked: A Crisis of Imagination.
I will gleefully raise my hand right now and admit I adore Scribblenauts. For those unlucky enough not to have come across the game, it involves solving simple puzzles by creating whatever object your imagination can conjure. Let’s say you want to get up a hill, do you make a rope? Ladder? Rocketship? Air Balloon? Jetpack? Or try something outrageous and be left shocked that it’s even included in the game. And that’s just a woefully basic example of the bizarrely humorous tasks the game has you complete. Overall it’s a wonderful game series that’s charmingly wholesome and ridiculously creative.
The latest game in the series is Scribblenauts Unmasked, which takes all the crazy fun of Scribblenauts and plops it in the DC Universe. Sounds like a great premise for a comic to me, apparently that’s what DC thought too.
Written by Josh Elder and drawn by Adam Archer, the series will debut digitally. Like DC’s other weekly titles such as Arrow, Adventures of Superman or Batman ’66, it’ll remain digital but then later will be collected in physical comic form.
Traditionally titles for kids don’t do very well. Recently at the Thought Bubble convention in Leeds this topic came up during the Image Comics panel, unfortunately the panellists agreed on the depressing truth that they just don’t sell. DC are taking a risk here by putting it out, so if like me you want to see more all ages comics, then please give it a go. The first issue drops tomorrow.