Most comic book characters aren’t inherently “annoying”. Rather, creators are annoying because of what they do with certain characters. And I know Scott Lobdell isn’t a comic book character, but he’s a character for sure, and an annoying one at that. For those who don’t know who he is, he’s the author who has single handedly destroyed Teen Titans, Superman, Red Hood and the Outlaws, and Action Comics.
His writing is terrible. Normally, I’m a sucker for Teen Titans books, seeing as the characters are generally around my age, and, therefore, more relatable than adult heroes. So the fact that Scott Lobdell has made me hate them is certainly a feat, and an annoying feat. It annoys me to no end that characters I have such a love for are, really, no more than a waste of my money right now.
The saddest part about this whole thing is that many characters only appear in Teen Titans – namely Tim Drake, Kid Flash and Wondergirl. All characters that have so much potential to be great together, but it’s all ruined because Scott Lobdell can’t write. At all.
Much of this may be DC’s fault for putting him on a book like Teen Titans, but, really, he didn’t have to ruin Teen Titans. What he should have said is “No thanks, I don’t want to ruin these books because I suck so much, I think I’ll go cut myself some more now because no one likes my work.” However, in accepting the projects, he has annoyed me to no extent.
And Teen Titans isn’t his only offense. Look at Red Hood and the Outlaws, the home of Jason Todd, Starfire, and Roy Harper. It’s garbage. And it was his best series before he moved away from it! Now, this problem sprouts almost entirely from the fact that he doesn’t understand any of the characters he writes. Take, for example, Red Hood and the Outlaws #1. Starfire is generally a strong female character, but in the space of two pages, he succeeded in essentially turning her into little more than a sex toy for Jason and Roy.
Why? I doubt we’ll ever know. But I do have a theory: Scott Lobdell is sexist trash who sees women as play things. Really, what reason would he have to objectify them otherwise? Some may say that he’s a male writer, so he doesn’t understand women. Now, I’m not going to claim I do, but I am going to claim that male writers can do justice to female characters. Ever heard of Brian Azzarello? How about Scott Snyder? Those two authors are proof that male authors can write excellent books that have female leads – without objectifying or sexualizing them.
So, if other authors can do it, why can’t Lobdell? Well, honestly, there are two answers, and I feel that both of them apply to this specific situation:
1. He’s a terrible writer. This one is fairly obvious – just look at his work. Ask around and see if you can find anyone who actually likes his books. This is further proven by the fact that he doesn’t understand the characters that he writes – see Teen Titans or Superman for the most obvious evidence.
2. He’s a sexist. This is also fairly likely. I mean, he comes across as a misogynistic pig through his writing. His blatant objectification of female characters is proof of this. Then, of course, there’s the fact that his books are dominated by males – coincidence? I doubt it.
In addition to this, he’s blatantly racist. Look at the two team books he’s written: Teen Titans and Red Hood and the Outlaws. Who dominates both books? White males. You could argue that there simply aren’t as many other characters besides white males who would fit either group. WRONG. That is why I have compiled a list of characters who would fit into Teen Titans and Red Hood and the Outlaws who Lobdell has blatantly ignored, probably because of race or gender:
Jaime Reyes (Blue Beetle)
Red Hood and the Outlaws:
Simon Baz (if he weren’t with the JLA)
And the list, really, could continue. Then, there is of course his infamous Twitter conversation with Ron Marz over racism, where Lobdell continuously defended racists. Is there a problem with that? Yes. You know who else defends racists? Neo-Nazis. You know what else Lobdell has done? He’s defended Fox News saying racists are just “freedom loving Americans”. That’s a problem. I mean, we live in a modern world, and being a neo-nazi like Scott Lobdell is seriously not Ok. It just isn’t. And you know what really isn’t Ok? Having racist, sexist, neo nazis writing comic books.
But I really need to get onto Lobdell’s biggest offense: the assassination of Superman. Honestly, I didn’t really read monthly comics before The New 52 started, and I had never really liked Superman. So I figured, how bad could I be?
As it turns out, it was pretty bad. Superman is another example of a character Lobdell doesn’t get. The trash he writes monthly with that book is reminiscent of the mess that was Superman: Earth One. Frankly, it’s pretty terrible. Compare it to any other run on Superman, and, no matter how bad it gets, no matter the lows other authors go to, all they need to say about their run is: At least it’s better than Lobdell’s. But, really, I don’t want to get into a rant about it. Maybe another time.
But just one more note on the topic: I’d love to see Lobdell try to claim he has the best Superman book on the stands in front of Scott Snyder. I could see Snyder just looking at him and shaking his head – which would be awesome.
But, possibly, the worst thing about Lobdell is that he legitimately thinks he’s good at what he does. He claims “everything will come together” or “people don’t understand” his books. So, here are a few counter arguments to both of those two points:
1st: Nothing comes together. When he left Red Hood, he left a huge mess behind, consisting of plot threads left hanging and weak characters. Right now, the reason it’s not great is because James Tynion is basically cleaning up after Lobdell. It’s like Lobdell took a shit on Jason Todd and now it’s somehow James Tynion’s job to shine that sparkly red helmet.
2nd: It’s hard not to understand his books. They’re some of the shallowest books coming out of any publisher right now. But Lobdell probably doesn’t even understand his own books because that’s how stupidly annoying he is. I mean, look: his books have absolutely no message. Lobdell is the Michael Bay of comics, and the worst part is that HE DOESN’T EVEN REALIZE IT.
Finally: He’s an idiot. He is quoted as saying “Tim goes straight from being Tim Drake to being Red Robin”. Ok, there are a couple problems with this. First of all, in Scott Snyder’s Batman book, it says that Tim was formerly Robin. My general rule of thumb is this: better authors overrule idiots. However, I need not even employ this rule, because Lobdell writes that Tim Drake used to be Robin. HE WRITES IT HIMSELF!!! And then, he, of course, contradicts himself like an idiot. Stupid Lobdell.
So, to sum it all up: FUCK OFF SCOTT LOBDELL!!!!