I think every burgeoning creator who cut their teeth on superhero comics faces the analog dilemma. Simply put, we all want to add our own spin to the classic themes that prevail over superhero storytelling. While certain creators have managed to work their way into the pantheons of the big two and tell the kind of groundbreaking stories they wanted with established characters (Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, Mark Waid's Kingdom Come), most creators had to branch out and form their own worlds and their own characters to really come at superheroes the way they wanted (The Authority, Watchmen, etc.).
It's beyond argument that many of those superhero analog books rank amongst the most important work in the realm of comics. Watchmen, perhaps the best example of an analog story, is widely considered the greatest comic ever created. So there's definitely a precedence there. The issue, at this point, isn't whether analog stories are a worthy use of panel space, but whether there are still enough original stories to be told in that particular vein.
This is what I'm struggling with right now. I have different projects which I try to divide my time evenly between. There's the horror/Western with elements of classic mythology, the homage/critique of the pulp/adventure genre, the space opera. Lately though, I find myself devoting more and more time to my own superhero analog. The question I pose to you, readers, is this; is it worth it? Should I continue to pump so much of my time and effort into something that many people will likely disregard with a simple, "Eh, it's been done before,"?
I think I have original things to say with these stories and I believe that I've come up with a very interesting and original way to tell the stories while still fleshing out the history of the universe that surrounds them. Aside from that, I've put a lot of myself into these characters, both good and bad, and I find that I like them and the story that surrounds them better than anything I've done yet.
So what do you think, friends and fans? Has this horse been beaten, dumped in a Lazarus pit and beaten again so many times that it's hardly worth it? Or should I soldier ahead, steely in my resolve, determined to put my own personal stamp on the genre that has meant so much to me and to the industry as a whole?
Up, up and away?