I found this on the 'net the other day. You know things are bad in secular comics when some of their top creators are saying the following (on the first I edited out the profanity; anything in parentheses contains the same general meaning as the original words, but sanitized):
Comic Book Pros Shake Their Heads in Disgust
"I want them to stop catering to the perverted needs of forty-five year old men. I want to stop seeing Batman (fornicating with) Black Canary. I don’t want to hear Batman swearing, I don’t want to see him feeding a boy rats, I don’t want to see characters getting raped in the (posterior), I don’t want to see characters who have been straight for sixty years become lesbians overnight because the writer’s too stupid or uncreative to come up with something decent, I want to see new characters for a new time, and when the industry of superhero comics realigns its sights to the young people it was meant for, I’ll be there with both arms and feet."
– Darwyn Cooke
"I get all the DC books free...and don’t read most of them.
"Part of it’s that they’re just not aimed at me — there are a lot of line-wide stunts that seem to affect all the books, which makes it hard to follow them as individual series, but at the same time there’s no apparent interest in building or maintaining a coherent universe. So whether you’re looking for self-contained series or want to wallow in the peculiar glories of a shared universe (and I like both), they’re presented in a way that messes up either thrill. At least for me.
"Add to that the tone of the books, which seems to be overwhelmingly grim, cheerless and bleak, and it’s a sandbox I don’t much want to play in or read about. But like I said, they’re not aimed at me."
- Kurt Busiek
"Annnnd today was the day I stopped reading super-hero comics. One that I won’t name finally broke me. Collection stops as of now. No joke. It’s not one bad comic. It’s the unbearably last in a long string of bad comics. Just sick of reading the same story 100 times in the last three years. It’s been building. I didn’t say they were all bad. I said I’ve reached a limit."
- Mark Waid
Look at this recent JUSTICE LEAGUE: THE RISE OF ARSENAL #3 (published by DC Comics) story transcript. It's remarkably stupid and insanely filthy (again, profanity euphemized in parentheses) :
Writer: JT Krul. Pencils: Geraldo Borges, Kevin Sharpe & Sergio Arino.
Page 1: Chesire shows up to theoretically kill Roy, blaming him for Lian’s death. They fight, and Roy’s thought captions on this page are about how hot she was in bed. No (kidding): ” Next to Kendra/Hawkgirl, Jade was the best in bed.” Chesire has poisonous fingernails that will kill you fairly instantly. She is shown scratching him with those fingernails, though he isn’t poisoned (?), and the scratch marks completely disappear on page 2 (??).
Page 2 -7: they fight, to such scintillating dialogue as “Bite me, Jade.” and “You’re a skilled assassin, but as a mother — YOU SUCKED!”. Roy uses various things sitting around (a tennis racket, a stapler, an extension cord) to battle Chesire — this is apparently Roy’s new superpower, fighting with whatever junk is sitting around, which is excitingly McGyver-esque! Using the extension cord like a whip (which is OK, “She likes it ROUGH anyway”), he ties Chesire up, porn-submission-style. Then they make out, and start to (fornicate)….
Page 8: .. except it turns out that he’s impotent!
Chesire then disappears from the comic without another word or mention of her.
Page 9: Since he can’t (copulate), he decides to go beat up guys. “I need a release.” and “For me, they serve their purpose” he thinks, as he sticks knives in faceless people’s arms.
Page 10: full-page splash of Roy standing over a bunch of unconscious guys. “Much better” says the caption as Roy makes an O-face.
Page 11: his dead junkie friend appears, and talks about the time they double-teamed a “couple of real skanks” in Nashville.
Pages 12 & 13: His daughter dead, and his dead friend prodding him, Roy decides to jump down off the rooftop in full costume and buy some heroin from a street dealer.
Page 14 & 15: he smokes heroin and nods out, in a two page spread.
On the same thread, the readers were informed that the classic Spider-man villain, the Lizard (Dr. Curt Conners) ate his own son in a recent storyline.
The above Comics Journal thread is called "Comics aren't for kids anymore. They're for sick people." You know things are bad when even that crowd is crying foul.