The WWE Draft took place last week, an event advertised as "forever changing the landscape of Raw and Smackdown." And it was that very overuse of corporate buzzwords to drive absurd hyperbole about the importance of a "special" event that made me think about comics, where every super-mega-crossover event will rock the comics universe to its foundations, leaving nothing ever the same again. So then we got to thinking: what if Marvel and DC did their own semi-regular draft with their stables of valuable corporate-owned intellectual properties: superheroes and supervillains. Wouldn't that make for an easy-to-write clickbait article that would rank highly in a lot of Google searches? Yes! So let's do this thing.
A superhero draft would help keep all the superhero feuds and angles fresh.
How often can a comic book company rehash the same old storylines with the same old characters and expect people not to notice they've run out of creative juice? The Fantastic Four have been going up against Doctor Doom for over fifty years. Superman and Lex Luthor have been going at it even longer. There's only so many times you can hire fanboy writers to put their own spin on the classics before returns start to diminish. What are people supposed to do? Come up with new ideas?!
We've got a better idea: instead of changing the stories, just change the characters. If Marvel and DC did a superhero draft like WWE, you could have the Fantastic Four going up against Lex Luthor and Superman going up against Doctor Doom for two years instead of the other way around. It wouldn't be too hard to squeeze Doctor Doom into the same stories comic book companies have endlessly rehashed for Superman over the years, would it? And the marks would eat it up! Plus, when those villains do return to their respective universes, you can go back to rehashing those same old stories again and again!
A superhero draft would facilitate more intercompany crossovers.
Just like WWE has Survivor Series, "the one night of the year where the superheroes of Raw face the superheroes of Smackdown and do battle for brand supremacy," Marvel and DC could begin to host similar annual events. We all know that super-mega-crossover events are the lifeblood of the comic book industry, used over and over again to drive sales, but the problem is you can only really book an event that changes the Marvel or DC universe forever four, maybe five times a year max before the marks start to get suspicious.
So how do you expand your super-mega-crossover event portfolio without ruining everything? Well, Marvel and DC could stand to learn a lot from WWE's monthly PPV schedule. At Survivor Series, the wrestlers battle across brands. At Hell in a Cell, wrestlers fight in a cage. At TLC, they fight in special matches involving tables, ladders, and chairs. They have a big brawl at the Royal Rumble with 30 men or women inside a single ring. Etc. Wouldn't it be great as a comic book publisher if you didn't have to come up with a new reason to have the Avengers fight the X-Men every year? What if they just did it because it's January? So clearly, simply having Marvel vs. DC crossovers regularly is just the beginning here.
A superhero draft would be a great way to rehab characters.
So your superhero has been Bendis'd… oops! What to do now? There's no way of fixing that without maybe killing them off for a couple of years and bringing them back as part of a mini-event focused on their resurrection. And sure, that does have its advantages, such as being able to produce seventeen individual Wolverine return minis because you had to kill him off since Jason Aaron turned him into a Mary Sue. But during that time he's staying dead, you can't have him making guest appearances in every title, and that's no good for the bottom line.
But what if you could trade Wolverine over to DC, so your readers get a break, and get back a character that seriously needs a break from there, like Batman? It's the best of both worlds because you can still make their departures and returns into events at both companies, but you don't have to take any time off in-between. It's a win/win.
So that's why Marvel and DC should adopt a regular superhero draft. What would you like to see happen if they did? Let us know in the comments. Or don't. We don't care. We already got your click.