Friday, July 19, 2019
Who is Hickman gonna Push with his XMen Reboot
Growing up, the members of Brothascomics all really enjoyed pro wrestling. Like we really enjoyed it. In the days before the internet and the Monday Night Wars, wrestling was only what you saw on tv. Yeah, we kinda had an idea that the outcomes were predetermined, but that really didn't matter. We really just loved seeing our favorite characters on Saturday beat the crap out of each other.
With the Monday Night wars and the birth of the internet, we got an inside peak into pro wrestling that was unheard of before. From dirtrags like Wrestling Insider and the Torch, to chat rooms, not only was the outcomes predetermined, we got a look into the business and how it was run and how dirty it could often be. Why is my favorite wrestler jobbing now? Why is ( fill in the blank) on tv so much now?
The pro wrestling term about a wrestler being over or getting over applies to a wrestler who has won the cheers( if a babyface/hero) or the jeers( if a heel/villain). There are several ways a wrestler can get over. Some get over by their look or their gimmick- like the Road Warriors and the Undertaker have great gimmicks.
Some wrestlers get over because they can work the mic... meaning they can talk or cut a promo and this makes the fans love/hate them depending upon if they are a heel or a face. Wrestlers like the Rock fall into this category.
Some wrestlers get over because of their in ring work... meaning they can flat out wrestle and can make a bad wrestler have a good match with them and the fans appreciate their work rate. Brett Hart falls into this category.
And when you have a wrestler that is good at all three, you have a legendary wrestler like Ric Flair( WHOOOOOOO!!) who was great at all three.
Well getting over in wrestling is not that easy. Its why for so long you saw many of the same faces being champions over the years( we see you Hulk Hogan). Getting a wrestler over takes talent by the wrestler for sure, but it also takes patience and creativity by the booker( the person who is writing the storylines). The booker decides who gets pushed( who gets a chance to be a star) and if they can get over...great... maybe they become a main event/headline wrestler. If they can't, they will get pushed back down the card and wont become a huge star.
Pushing a wrestler is a delicate process. If you push them too much or too soon, fans will reject that wrestler( like they did Rocky Mavia- before he was the Rock). If you push them for too long and they don't get over, the character can become stale and rejected by the fans.
This is a lot of preview ahead of my main question: Who is Hickman going to push for the X-Men? The reboot is wrapped in mystery and that is understandable. But, over the last four years, X-Men and their fans have been subject to several reboots and each one is like a failed push. From All New, All Different, to the return of Blue and Gold, to this most recent reboot that came out of Age of X-Man, there has been no real direction on who are the main event X-Men and who are the X-Men on the lower part of the card.
And there is a lot to getting a comic character over. ALOT! Its why so many comic books seem like they star the same people over and over. And much like wrestling, it takes creative booking to create a new star and have them get over. Creators use gimmicks and looks to help characters get over but sometimes there is not enough substance to the character and they just become their gimmick. Its why you see new characters make a big debit and then get pushed down the card. Its why we have so many books and stories with the same heroes and villains.
My initial thought is are they gonna push the Giant Sized X-Men team: Cyclops, Storm, Nightcrawler, Colossus, Wolverine, and of course the resurrected Jean Grey. Those characters are all over with the fans but have been pushed so much they may have become stale.
Are they gonna push the 90's X-Men with Cyclops, Storm, Rogue, Gambit, and Wolverine as their base. Again, all of them over, but are they like Hulk Hogan where you cheer for him but know you've seen this act before....
Are they gonna push the more new characters such as X-23 and Honey Badger or do a mix of old and new characters like they did in X-Men Red. Many of these characters are not over with fans, but they do have a vocal fan base.
I really don't know. And what of characters such as Bishop, Cable, Domino, X-Force.... all characters that have great looks/gimmicks but are maybe not so over they need their own comic book.
This would be a fascinating conversation if we hadn't done this so many times over the past four years. The X-Men have been treading water on the mid-card of the show for so many years now. Maybe it was the lack of creative( booking), maybe the characters look/gimmick didn't resonate with fans anymore. Maybe the idea of a world that hates mutants just doesn't work anymore. Who knows? I do know this tho…. people are putting a lot of hope and faith into this Hickman reboot and if he does not deliver..... there will be another reboot in 2 years. And whatcha gonna do about that brother?