No one likes Captain Atom.
Not because you haven't tried to make us, though. DC has abandoned scores of interesting and at least mildly popular characters since the Crisis, including some with small but very passionate fanbases. But DC never gives up on Captain Atom. No matter how many times we do.
Nyeah, with great power comes great boredom, got it, got it.
And, oh, how you have tried! You gave him a new origin. You gave him his own series (more than once, I recall). You put him in JLI, You laughably made him the leader of all of Earth's superheroes during an alien invasion crossover. And when the most recent Heroclix set, "Superman/Wonder Woman" was teased, five figures were shown: Superman, Wonder Woman, Superman foe Lex Luthor, Superman ally Krypto the Superdog, and... Captain Atom. OF COURSE. Because the kids, they ALL love Captain Atom.
|"Whoa! I was going to pass on this set, because who wants clix of Superman, Wonder Woman, Lex Luthor, and Krypto. But CAPTAIN ATOM?! Take my wallet!'
Said absolutely no one on earth.
"Captain Atom is one of the most powerful beings on earth!" "Captain Atom is potentially more powerful than Superman!" "Captain Atom is the model for Dr. Manhattan!' "Captain Atom has fewer cavities and 32% more whitening particles!"
Please stop. It doesn't work. We don't care how hard or how many ways or how many times you try to convince us we should love Captain Atom.
|"Cary Bates! THAT'll fix the problem!"
Captain Atom is a tool. Or a traitor. Or a dupe. Or a pompous ass. Or a hothead. Who cries when defeated by a pickle jar. And we don't like him.
|I just TOLD you what you were, Captain Atom; jeez, try to keep up.
Captain Atom doesn't have a dedicated fanbase. He doesn't have a fanbase at all. Even that ne-er-do-well hipster slacker poseur layabout Jack Knight has a fanbase. Even G'Nort has a fanbase. There are NO Captain Atom fans. There are, at best, a Set of People Who Didn't Mind Him All That Much in That One Thing They Saw or Read for Some Other Reason. You want to know how unloved Captain Atom is? He doesn't even have a Facebook fanpage. And if he did, it would be called "A Set of People Who etc."
|Plus, the only remotely interesting thing he ever does is blow up.
Even Captain Atom knows when he's not wanted. Why doesn't DC?
I get it. You paid good money for him at the Charlton yard sale and you want to get your money's worth. Plus, he hardly had any wear and tear on him, so he should have lots of good use left in him. You just keep trying him on with every outfit you have in the hope of finding the right one. But it's really obvious that that's what you're doing. Captain Atom is not an organic part of the DCU. If he didn't exist or you didn't own him, absolutely no one, writer or reader, would be saying, "You know, we need a character like THIS."
Captain Atom worked well precisely once, ten years ago, when he was trapped in the Wildstorm Universe, where suddenly he seems like a shining beacon of goodness and common sense in that effed up world. Whose characters, I note, you have since tried to incorporate into the main DCU, failed, and are now spinning back out into their own continuity, where they belong.
That should be a clue; give him another universe of his own. He and Blue Beetle COULD be the Superman and Batman of a Charlton Universe. You could spend your energies trying to have more than one potential movie franchise--,er, I mean, comic book universe going at the same time. it's worked well with Earth-2, hasn't it? Run with that.
Adding insult, while you're spending all this time and effort pushing Captain Atom on us, you ignore The Atom, who everyone likes. But that's a post for another day....