tmp_batman_the_dark_knight_23_4_cover_20131279794696Of just about any of DC’s VIllains’ Month titles, there has been an inordinate of interest in Joker’s Daughter – the thing came out the day before yesterday and copies with the 3D cover are going for $100 on eBay, for Christ’s sake. Even I couldn’t get a copy with the 3D cover at my local comic store, where they know me by name and ask me that if I insist upon screeching that I want to see crazy girls in 3D that I do it outside where the police can hear me.

So the obvious question is whether the comic book is actually worth the interest. Sure, a lot of the demand seems to be based on the fact that DC egregiously underestimated the number of people who wanted this book with the 3D cover, Which is fine, and a prime example of the free market and supply and demand in action, but in no way addresses whether the book is actually worth reading or not: after all, 20 years ago, Todd McFarlane’s Spider-Man #1 with the polybagged chromium cover was going for hundreds of dollars for the same reason, but a lack of supply still couldn’t make that book anything but a pile of shit by a writer who gave us a legitimate hint by repeatedly showing readers the word “doom” in big letters.

Well, having a regular old 2D copy means that I can actually open and read the book, and see what’s going on on the inside. And what’s going on in there is… weird. It is supervillain origin story as goth cautionary take by way of indictment of female body image via on-the-nose Greek tragedy. And it is a difficult book to review, because I am not 100 percent sure just how I feel about it; the book is certainly more ambitious a venture than I would have expected for a character spun off from a dude whose origin is being kicked into a vat of acid, even though I think it is a long yard away from sticking the landing. And it certainly goes in an direction and tries for a complexity that I would not have expected for a character joined at the name with a dude whose M.O. is to make people laugh themselves to death.

Oh: and Joker’s Daughter beats Jesus up. So there’s that.

ComicBookGuy2012 is firmly at our backs. Congratulations, everyone. We made it.

I don’t know about the rest of you, but we had some real time encounters with abject, stinking failure in 2012 that make me all the more grateful to move on and away from it. From the weird decision to fire and then almost immediately rehire Gail Simone, to the baffling continued employment of Greg Land, to the need for some high profile comics creators to make odd and unnecessary comments about Batman’s sexuality because they can’t seem to stop giving Playboy interviews while in the thrall of a mescaline bender, there was plenty to color the comics enjoyment experience last year. And, after all the dust settled from the complaints of former employees about creator rights and other assorted Twitter bitching, sometimes, just sometimes, there were the comics themselves that were the problem.

Here are my picks for the top five comic book disappointments of 2012, after the jump.

Have you read this month’s installment of Catwoman, yet? If you haven’t, don’t. There are a lot of other things you can do with that $2.99 instead of buy issue #0, by writer Ann Nocenti, unless you happen to be an obsessive collector of Adriana Melo’s artwork (which is the only bright point of the issue) or the items that carry the stench of failure, like dollar store condoms.

Selina Kyle has suffered mightily in the New 52 reboot at the hands of Judd Winick, suggesting that Barry Ween is his Jagged Little Pill. If Barry Ween was “You Oughta Know”, then Catwoman was Winick parading around naked exhorting “Thank you, silence”. Selina was a broken mess that owed more of her personality and actions to Batman slash fic than Frank Miller or Ed Brubaker. The announcement that Ann Nocenti was taking over the book at issue #0 was greeted with relief in this household. Surely, the woman who created Typhoid Mary for the Daredevil franchise could come up with a stronger, more bad ass take on Catwoman.

Turns out, not so much.

Spoiled déjà vu all over again, after the jump.

Editor’s Note: I acknowledge that these pictures suck. We’ll upgrade our cameras once we receive your subscription check. Oh, you don’t pay for this? Then fuck you and enjoy the pictures you got.

Last year we kind of wandered into the panel for Scott Snyder’s American Vampire, mostly to make sure we’d have a seat for the DC New 52 panel that followed directly afterwards. Don’t get me wrong, we were following American Vampire in kind of a general way, but I had fallen away; the initial hype around one of the early stories being written by Stephen King hadn’t been enough to keep me in the book except in a “flip through when I happened to see it on the shelf” way. The point is that last year, we were able to walk right into Snyder’s panel without having to wait around in a line.

That was 2011. This year, Snyder’s writing Batman, which has consistently been one of the best books of DC’s New 52 and the source of the first post-reboot DC crossover event. So this time around, for the Batman panel yesterday? Yeah, we waited in line.

The Batman panel covered all the Batman family books, from Batman to Red Hood And The Outlaws… meaning walking in Amanda and I steeled ourselves for exciting news running the gamut from Batman’s post-Owls Joker encounter to Starfire’s post-Red Hood stranger’s penis encounter. However, weird former Teen Titan sex revelations or no, Snyder started the panel off with a laugh: “Avengers Vs. X-Men, who wins? Batman.” I hate it when my comic writers are funnier than I am. But I digress.