As Marvel Comics nears one full year without the Fantastic Four, it’s fascinating to watch the complex editorial dance about the team’s related concepts.  The Thing is playing space-ranger, The Human Torch is finally a first-line Avenger and Doctor Doom has been a regular in Iron Man’s book.  Rumors of the whys and wherefores aside, a rest period is often a good thing for a title.  Hawkman benefitted greatly from his post-Zero Hour absence, and Barry Allen’s prolonged sabbatical made people forget how boring he is, leading to today’s L.O.A. query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) hopes the Legion returns strong after their rest period, asking: How long is an appropriate absence for a property to lie dormant in order to rejuvenate?

The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

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5 Comments

  1. March 16, 2016 at 11:31 am — Reply

    It’s probably a cop-out answer, but I’d say “until someone has a good idea on how to use them”. The Hawkman example is a good one; say what you will about its actual execution, the basic idea behind reviving & emphasizing his “reincarnation romance” origins was super solid and gave him a hook other than the one on his mask for the first time in a while. I’m fine with stuff staying on the shelf, even if it’s something I love (*coughLegioncough*), until someone has ways to use it other than breaking it.

    • March 16, 2016 at 12:49 pm — Reply

      Couldn’t have said it better myself. Some things just need a good idea rather than any arbitrary limit of “time off”.

  2. March 16, 2016 at 11:36 am — Reply

    I have a feeling that about 4-5 years is a time when people start to forget things as consumers. That same time is also between elections, so it HAS to have some basis in reality, given how people tend to vote same jackasses who messed things up the last time again and again. My answer is 4-5 years.

  3. March 16, 2016 at 4:26 pm — Reply

    It all depends on why the property went away. Heroes started to suck, they cancelled it and brought it back way too soon. Ghostbusters faded away and came back with all sorts of good lucking hype. After listening to Geek History Lesson, I learned Punisher went away and came right back and it rocked.

    So there is not a definitive answer.

  4. Bill the seeker
    March 17, 2016 at 8:57 pm — Reply

    One thing that your “favorite” cohost has mentioned a time or two is publishing comics in limited series as opposed to the traditional constant run. The thing I like about it is that we get better, thought out stories instead of sometingwethoughtoftofillspaceuntilwegetagoodideaorhavetoshoehorninaneditorialedict. In other words I agree with the prior remarks. Let the franchise rest until there is a good story to tell. Or until Byrne wants another crack. :)

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