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Saturday, February 27, 2010

Joe Slab, Friend of AquaMan

With this post, we're inducting a new member of F.O.A.M, Joe Slab, but in this case the reason's a little different--its not anything Joe sent me, but, as Joe pointed out to me, he is very much a Friend of AquaMan.

On Thursday, I said this during the post about the Aquaman Previews cover: "
Let's hope this image represents what we all hope it does: a big, splashy (sorry) return of Classic Aquaman. (If it isn't, and DC is doing all this just to kill off Aquaman again, then we'll storm the DC offices with torches and pitchforks.)"

Joe left this comment, responding to what I wrote: "
Rob--You are the director of the Aquaman Shrine, time to start acting like it and stop qualifying every single statement you make about Aquaman's return with the possibility that DC won't get it right. They are obviously putting a lot of thoughtful planning into his return so let's just be fans, go with it, and support the move! YAY AQUAMAN!!!"

I'll tell you, on first blush I didn't like this comment at all. I thought Joe was slamming me a bit, and for a day or so afterward I was pretty pissed off. I guess I've become pretty spoiled at the overwhelmingly positive response my work with the Shrine gets, and how little comment moderation I have to do (I think I've deleted less than five comments over the 3 and 1/2 years, an amazingly good ratio), so any comment that's even a little critical put my Aquaman underoos in a bunch.

But I started to think about it, I realized I was being way too sensitive. Sure, I've been reading Aquaman for so long--and had to endure so many failed relaunches--that I feel a little skepticism is natural, but I now feel a little silly about being such a Debbie Downer, right on the eve of Classic Aquaman making a comeback. So--I lightened up.

Just a few minutes ago, Joe sent me a long email, telling me about his extensive online efforts to build up Aquaman's rep, starting and/or commenting on many a discussion thread and getting AquaFans to speak up. Here's links to just a couple of them:

DC Message Boards 7/13/09

Comic Bloc 1/20/10

CBR 2/22/10

...Joe also managed to get a message to Geoff Johns, telling him about that NPR piece we talked about yesterday. He also apologized for his comment--which wasn't necessary--and said he's just such a fan of Aquaman that he wanted me to join in the spirit.

Aquaman needs more fans like Joe, out there on teh internets spreading the Aqua Word. I'm too busy running the Shrine to have much of a presence on any comic message boards, so I'm thankful so many other Aqua-Fans are picking up the slack.

So, Joe, thanks for bringing me around, and welcome to F.O.A.M.!


Airship Over Water said...

Welcome FOAM Joe!

I think we can all agree that while some of us are worried about Arthur's return (and rightfully so -- just look at the past), keeping a positive attitude is the right way to go.

It's like the Blue Lanterns say -- "All will be well."

Joe Slab said...

Thanks again Rob!!! I'm welling up with pride after reading this piece.

Hopefully ALL of our fan efforts from different corners will continue to build the momentum for Aquaman's return. We will keep spreading the word!

And everyone, don't forget to pick up a copy or 2 of Brave and the Bold #32 on March 17th. I have word that DC staff will be watching its sales closely...

Wings1295 said...

Aquaman aside, if more bloggers and those who comment could behave as well as you two have, the internets themselves would be quite a wonderful place indeed.

Kudos to you both!

Colin Smith said...

Well said, Rob. I myself originally thought Joe's comment was rather forceful, & that though I knew he was a passionate well-meaning fan, there were more gentle ways to make his point. At this point, both of you might have ended up falling out, a terrible shame when you're both so pro-Aquaman. What I think has been cool about how you thought it through & wrote about it, Rob, and how you were gracious enough to apologise, Joe, is that we're not seeing a repeat of the many, many misunderstandings that have soured relations on the net between folks who'd be far better allies than not. And it's great to see matters ending this way. It's an inspiration. My best to both of you, gentlemen. You've cheered up my evening.

Unknown said...

I think Joe is also a Friend of Rob. This is such a good example of what a really good and positive force the internet can be. I have had to endure a lot of failures in life before I came to realize that my really good friends weren't only the ones who praised my successes, but also the ones who pointed out my shortcomings.
Some may find irony in a comic book forum being the setting for a little personal growth.
I think it's great.
I, too, long for the return of the good-hearted, heroic Aquaman, his beautiful and courageous wife, Mera and Aqualad, the ever-faithful sidekick.
These were the innocent and pure icons of my (relatively) innocent and pure youth. I've changed a lot since then and so have they. I'm having a great life but, still, I do miss the altruistic and optimistic youth I once was. Maybe that's also why I miss the classic Aquaman.
Let's treat Aquaman like anybody else we care about. Love the good qualities and accept his failings as the human frailty that is common to us all.

rob! said...

AOW, Joe, Colsmi, and Barry--Thanks for the very nice comments. I almost didn't write this post, because I thought it was too much about myself. But I'm glad I did.

And yes, I think we all long for a happy adventurer of the seven seas again!