Thursday, June 2, 2011

Brave New World

The DC Universe is rebooting again.

I was a teenager in 1985, probably the perfect time to be a comic book geek as the DC Universe experienced its first major reboot in the groundbreaking maxi-series Crisis on Infinite Earths.  Over 12 feverishly cosmic issues Writer Marv Wolfman and artists George Perez and Jerry Ordway detonated decades of intensely intricate comic book continuity full of alternate dimension variations of all the main characters.  Whole universes of characters were devoured, crushed or grafted together to make new streamlined versions of older stories.

It was exhilarating.  It felt like being on the ground floor of something big, the original DC universe had lasted pretty much unchanged since the early 60's and here I was getting to read how a whole new universe that would surely last for decades began as it happened.

Twenty-six years later and the DC Universe has been picked at, unspooled, re-written and re-booted literally dozens of times since the original Crisis.  All the multiple universes destroyed in Crisis on Infinite Earths were brought back.  Most of the major characters killed during the Crisis or in its many aftermaths have been resurrected and now a generation later DC, staffed now with writers who grew up in the 80's, have returned the DC Universe to much the same shape it was before that first cataclysmic re-boot.

Now, in the coming aftermath of the Flash miniseries Flashpoint where Flash nemesis The Reverse Flash is using time travel to alter history, all of the DC titles are re-starting with new number 1's, new continuities and new status quos.

The constant wave of re-boots is starting to wear a little thin to this long time reader, but it's probably going to be thrilling to a lot of geeky teenagers.  I can't begrudge them it, out of nostalgic solidarity if nothing else.

The picture is from the upcoming Justice League #1 art by Jim Lee.  There are some interesting visual changes, Superman has a New S symbol and appears to no longer wear his underoos over his tights, most of the characters sport a similar Star Trek Next Gen uniform collar on their costumes and the way the Flashpoint series is launching Cyborg from the B - List to the A-List seems to be something they're keeping in the new continuity.

I just really hope that Grant Morrison's big fairly recently newish take on Batman isn't one of the pending victims of universal reboot although its rumored that Morrison will be given the Superman rewrite so we'll see.

I'm iffy on the new Hawkman, but with rumours of a possible Hawkman movie I can see why they would want to butch him up:

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