I’ve been giving a lot of thought lately to dropping my subscriptions to the Flash and Firestorm comic books, as the stories just aren’t interesting to me anymore. The comics themselves are still well-written and illustrated, but I just find the tales very boring. I came to this realization when I picked up the most recent issues of Flash and Firestorm; when I started reading them, I found that I couldn’t remember anything that had happened in the previous issue…and that had only come out a month ago! To make matters worse, the same thing happened with the issue before that!
This is generally a very good sign that a comic is boring you, and you should drop it. Makes sense, right? Well, here’s the rub: when I thought about it for a moment, I realized that sometimes I can’t remember what happened in the last issue of comics I really enjoy. For example, I’ve been loving the relaunched Archer & Armstrong, but when I read the most recent issue, I had blanked on what had come before. I’m hoping I just had a brainfart; once I saw the synopsis page, everything came flooding back.
When you read a lot of comics, I’d assume that this problem would be commonplace. Part of it may be due to the fact that DC Comics does not put a previous issue synopsis at the beginning of their books like Marvel Comics and many other publishers do. Still, I usually have no trouble remembering what happened in recent issues of Artifacts, Iron Man, or the five — five! — different Green Lantern series. (Granted, the latter all mostly suck right now; maybe it’s just annoyance that’s keeping those stuck in my head.)
This comic book senility bothers me a bit beyond just a case of boring stories; I wonder if my memory itself might be faltering. I forget random shit all of the time, just like most folks, but comic book reading is a constant, repeated activity that I’ve been doing for most of my life. If I’m starting to forget important pieces of that, something may be wrong.
As with most things, time will tell. I’ll just have to wait it out, I guess. In the meantime, I may give Flash and Firestorm another issue or two each to wow me. If not, I’ll just borrow friends’ copies if I ever want to catch up down the road. In the meantime, there’s plenty of other good books out there to replace them, right?