All 52 new titles from DC have now been reviewed. Here is the summary of the line and my thoughts on the whole thing.

Reviews

First, the complete set of review links:

  1. Action Comics
  2. All-Star Western
  3. Animal Man
  4. Aquaman
  5. Batgirl
  6. Batman
  7. Batman and Robin
  8. Batman: The Dark Knight
  9. Batwing
  10. Batwoman
  11. Birds of Prey
  12. Blackhawks
  13. Blue Beetle
  14. Captain Atom
  15. Catwoman
  16. DC Universe Presents
  17. Deathstroke
  18. Demon Knights
  19. Detective Comics
  20. The Flash
  21. Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E.
  22. The Fury of Firestorm
  23. Green Arrow
  24. Green Lantern
  25. Green Lantern Corps
  26. Green Lantern: New Guardians
  27. Grifter
  28. Hawk and Dove
  29. I, Vampire
  30. Justice League
  31. Justice League Dark
  32. Justice League International
  33. Legion Lost
  34. Legion of Super-Heroes
  35. Men of War
  36. Mister Terrific
  37. Nightwing
  38. O.M.A.C.
  39. Red Hood and the Outlaws
  40. Red Lanterns
  41. Resurrection Man
  42. The Savage Hawkman
  43. Static Shock
  44. Stormwatch
  45. Suicide Squad
  46. Superboy
  47. Supergirl
  48. Superman
  49. Swamp Thing
  50. Teen Titans
  51. Voodoo
  52. Wonder Woman

If you missed any reviews earlier and want to check them out now, go ahead.

The Numerical Analysis

As those who follow me on Google+ have known for weeks, I’ve created a Google Docs spreadsheet that ranks all 52 titles first by total score and then by title. It also analyzes the scores themselves in frequency tables, and can be found here. The average scores in each category are as follows:

Score Originality Art Story Characterization Emotional Response Flow Overall Total (out of 42)
Mean 4.37 4.67 4.75 4.73 4.37 5.08 4.37 32.33
Median 4 5 5 5 4 5 4 32.5
Mode 5 5 5 5 3 6 5 30

Complete frequency tables and graphs are available through the above link. Additionally, Google+ comments led me to add statistical correlations between categories, which clearly expose by bias towards story over art when judging a title; your mileage may vary.

The Qualitative Analysis

This is a comic book line. The overall quality may not be drastically different than it has been from DC in the recent past at all. The difference is in the marketing and accessibility. When I started collecting comics again about ten years ago, I collected Marvel almost exclusively for a couple of reasons. One was that their low-cost classic reprint line of Essentials was far more developed than DC’s (which didn’t even exist yet). That made it easier to fill in key backstory for these characters. The second thing Marvel did was the modern recap page; when I heard great things about a title I wasn’t reading, the recap pages let me start at any issue and the well developed trade paperback line made it easy to catch up on a title in short order. That just made it much easier to jump into the universe.

DC has made it easy for everybody now. Everything is available simultaneously in print and digital formats, and everything has a good jumping on point right here, right now. There has been more press for this than anything else. Can one argue that it is, to some degree, a cheap stunt? Sure. That said, numbers don’t lie. In March of this year, I was collecting four DC titles (Flash, Green Lantern, Green Lantern Corps and Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors.) Now I’m trying to narrow down the DC titles on my pull list down to 15, and there are 31 I’d like to follow. Yes, I’m going to be cancelling Marvel comics to make room on my pull list, but I’m still spending more money on comics grand total than I was before. Bad for my wallet, but good for DC and the industry as a whole.

The Segmentation

Perhaps the most telling measure of success is this table. Each column lists my expectations for each title as high, moderate or low. Each row arranges the titles by the actual delivered quality, meaning the top row has the best titles in the line, and the diagonal from the top left to the bottom right are the titles that met expectations. Anything above the diagonal exceeded my expectations, while anything below diappointed. This is done according to how I feel about them in retrospect having read the entire line, without referencing the scores. Please try titles in the upper right hand corner; these are titles I think deserve an audience, but I fear those audiences may not find the books. If you enjoy them as much as I did, tell others about them, too.

High Expectations Moderate Expectations Low Expectations
High Performance Justice League, Justice League International, Action, Supergirl, Detective, Green Lantern, Green Lantern Corps, Green Lantern: New Guardians Aquaman, The Flash, Batman, Batgirl, Nightwing, Deathstroke Mister Terrific, Catwoman, I Vampire, Resurrection Man, Voodoo, Suicide Squad, All Star Western
Moderate Performance Superman, Blue Beetle Wonder Woman, The Fury of Firestorm, Superboy, Batman: The Dark Knight, Red Lanterns, Grifter, Men of War, Teen Batwoman, Batwing, Demon Knights, Static Shock
Low Performance DC Universe Presents, Justice League Dark Captain Atom, Green Arrow, The Savage Hawkman, Batman and Robin, Birds of Prey, Red Hood and the Outlaws, Swamp Thing, Animal Man, Stormwatch, O.M.A.C., Blackhawks, Hawk and Dove, Legion Lost, Legion of Super-Heroes Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E.

On top of that, DC solicited the titles in a series of categories. When sorted by overall score, here’s each group with titles sorted by score:

Justice League

  • Aquaman – 40 out of 42
  • Justice League – 40 out of 42
  • Mister Terrific – 38 out of 42
  • Flash – 37 out of 42
  • Justice League International – 35 out of 42
  • The Fury of Firestorm – 32 out of 42
  • Wonder Woman – 31 out of 42
  • DC Universe Presents – 30 out of 42
  • Captain Atom – 29 out of 42
  • Savage Hawkman – 29 out of 42
  • Green Arrow – 27 out of 42

Superman

  • Action Comics – 36 out of 42
  • Supergirl – 34 out of 42
  • Superman – 34 out of 42
  • Superboy – 32 out of 42

Batman

  • Nightwing – 40 out of 42
  • Catwoman – 37 out of 42
  • Batgirl – 36 out of 42
  • Detective Comics – 35 out of 42
  • Batwing – 34 out of 42
  • Batwoman – 34 out of 42
  • Batman: The Dark Knight – 33 out of 42
  • Batman – 32 out of 42
  • Batman and Robin – 30 out of 42
  • Birds of Prey – 30 out of 42
  • Red Hood and the Outlaws – 23 out of 42

Green Lantern

  • Green Lantern Corps – 42 out of 42
  • Green Lantern – 35 out of 42
  • Green Lantern: New Guardians – 35 out of 42
  • Red Lanterns – 35 out of 42

The Dark

  • Resurrection Man – 34 out of 42
  • Swamp Thing – 32 out of 42
  • I, Vampire – 31 out of 42
  • Justice League Dark – 28 out of 42
  • Animal Man – 26 out of 42
  • Demon Knights – 26 out of 42
  • Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E. – 26 out of 42

The Edge

  • All Star Western – 37 out of 42
  • Deathstroke – 37 out of 42
  • Voodoo – 36 out of 42
  • Suicide Squad – 35 out of 42
  • Grifter – 33 out of 42
  • Men of War – 30 out of 42
  • Blackhawks – 28 out of 42
  • Stormwatch – 27 out of 42
  • O.M.A.C. – 26 out of 42

Young Justice

  • Blue Beetle – 33 out of 42
  • Static Shock – 31 out of 42
  • Legion Lost – 30 out of 42
  • Legion of Super-Heroes – 30 out of 42
  • Teen Titans – 30 out of 42
  • Hawk and Dove – 25 out of 42

Come back later for our guide to locating the Hooded Woman in each of these 52 issues.