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  • GL:Grandfathered continuity in the New 52

    I found this on CBR:http://robot6.comicbookresources.com...in-the-new-52/

    here wouldn’t be as much of an issue — and perhaps none at all — if every character’s history had been allowed to reset. However, stating specifically that the Batman and Green Lantern families both came through the relaunch relatively unchanged, even as Superman, the Flash, the Teen Titans, and the Justice League generally each got new beginnings, was just asking for trouble. Still, the question then becomes how much of Batman and GL backstory has become crucial to the present understanding of those characters?

    *******batman stuff******

    We can analyze the Green Lantern timeline similarly, since the GL setup encourages the introduction of new characters. Moreover — and just to be blunt — not a lot of substance happens to Hal Jordan for much of the 1960s. Oh sure, he leaves Ferris Aircraft for a series of mundane jobs (toy salesman, insurance agent, truck driver), but none of those have much bearing on his GL duties. Even Guy Gardner’s debut happens in the context of a what-if story, where Guy never actually gets the ring.

    Here, then, are my GL bullet points:

    – Hal is recruited by Abin Sur. He soon meets the Guardians and various other Lanterns; and joins the Justice League.

    – A Guardian “introduces” Hal to Guy Gardner.

    – Hal, Green Arrow, and the Guardian called the “Old-Timer” begin their cross-country soul-searching. This may be where Hal’s susceptibility to Parallax starts.

    – When Guy is injured, John Stewart becomes Hal’s deputy.

    – Guy comes back briefly, but Sinestro puts him in a coma.

    – After Hal spends too much time protecting Ferris Air, the Guardians exile Hal from Earth for a year.

    – Shortly after Hal comes back, he quits the Corps in favor of Carol Ferris. John becomes Sector 2814′s main GL.

    – Crisis On Infinite Earths: Guy comes out of his coma, the Anti-Monitor attacks Oa and kills several Guardians, and one faction of Guardians reactivates Guy and Hal.

    – The Guardians and Zamarons leave this dimension to spawn. A group of Lanterns relocates (with Hal and John) to Earth.

    – The Manhunters (the Guardians’ old agents) strike at Earth’s super-folk, trying to destroy the superpowered “New Guardians.”

    – The GL Corps is reduced to four (Hal, John, Guy, and Ch’p) after the Central Power Battery is destroyed.

    – Hal sports grey temples. Hal, John, and Guy stop the Old-Timer from kidnapping the Earth cities he visited. The Guardians return and restore the GL Corps. John stays on Oa to oversee the “Mosaic” communities.

    – Mongul destroys Coast City. Hal helps Superman stop Mongul. Hal then goes nuts, killing the Guardians and several GLs before giving in to Parallax.

    – Kyle Rayner becomes the last GL. Guy becomes Warrior. John becomes a Darkstar.

    – Zero Hour: Parallax tries to restart time. During a later battle between Hal and Kyle, Oa is destroyed.

    – The Final Night: Parallax sacrifices himself to restart the Sun.

    – A younger, time-lost Hal teams up with Kyle for a short while, but of course Parallax puts a stop to that. Kyle is left with a power ring which can make other power rings.

    – Day of Judgment: Hal (still dead) becomes the Spectre’s new host.

    – Green Lantern Legacy: The Last Will And Testament Of Hal Jordan: Using a unique power ring, Tom Kalmaku rebuilds Oa. Soon afterwards (GL vol. 3 #150), Kyle expends his recently-acquired Ion power to refuel the Central Power Battery and bring back the Guardians.

    – Green Lantern: Rebirth: Hal is revived, Parallax is defeated, and Hal, Guy, and John become GLs again.

    At this point we are into Geoff Johns’ run as GL writer, so I’m assuming everything from Rebirth forwards is still generally valid. This includes the Rainbow Lanterns, Blackest Night, and “War of the Green Lanterns.”

    Looking at the timeline, it’s clear that the stage had been set for a new Green Lantern Corps, most likely with Kyle as headliner. From 1994 through 2002 (when Legacy and GL #150 were published), the proverbial earth had been pretty well salted against the returns of either Hal Jordan or the Corps. Hal spent five years as Parallax and the next five as the Spectre, and Kyle’s attempts to bring back the intergalactic Corps never really went anywhere. (However, he did make Jade a GL briefly, and he brought John Stewart back to active duty.) Therefore, when Johns took over Green Lantern, his real task was in sorting out Hal’s complicated journey from deranged ex-GL to omnipotent agent of God, and literally bringing him down to Earth.

    However, in the interests of compressing and streamlining Hal’s history, it may make a certain amount of sense simply to eliminate Hal’s Spectre career. The Spectre does figure significantly in Hal’s restoration (helping separate Hal’s soul from Parallax’s influence), but depending on the Spectre’s status in the New-52 cosmology, some other means (a last burst of Ion-power?) might also do the trick.

    Likewise, Johns used a few longstanding DC characters in his GL epics, including the Cyborg Superman (as the Manhunters’ new leader), the Anti-Monitor (as the Sinestro Corps’ “Guardian”), and Superboy-Prime (as a super-powerful Sinestro Corpsman). Each of these characters comes from other Big DC Events — “Reign of the Supermen,” Crisis, and Infinite Crisis — so their continued presence in the New-52 timeline suggests that those events (or versions thereof) remain valid. By the same token, though, none of them appears essential to Johns’ overall narrative, so it may be relatively easy for the New-52 to forget about them. Personally, I suspect a New-52 retelling of Crisis On Infinite Earths would be particularly strange and artificial, but that’s speculation for another day.

    Ironically, Green Lantern’s continuity has become a victim of Geoff Johns’ own vaunted plotting skills. With Rebirth, Johns very cleverly reworked Hal Jordan’s convoluted fate(s) into pieces of a slowly-emerging puzzle which would eventually unlock the secrets of DC’s universe. It remains a masterful performance of continuity gymnastics. Nevertheless, at the time it depended heavily on those existing story elements. If the New-52 relaunch has erased some of those, the larger narrative integrity of Johns’ run starts to break down. I don’t think it’s broken irreparably, but it’ll be instructive to learn who’s still around and who’s never mentioned again.

    Actually, the Anti-Monitor could continue to sponsor the Sinestro Corps, since he (and the Monitor) were originally associated with the moons of Qward and Oa. It could even be the case that the Crisis On Infinite (52?) Earths hasn’t yet happened to the New-52 — and wouldn’t that be a nice crossover…?

    I digress slightly, but the point remains: the Green Lantern timeline has become more dependent on Big Events (Crisis, Zero Hour, Final Night, Infinite Crisis, and the various GL-centric arcs) than the Batman timeline. As such, it raises more questions about the validity of those events in the New-52 chronology. I don’t anticipate these sorts of questions being answered with any kind of specificity, so we may have to see what remains by implication.

    * * *

    When I started thinking about this post, I was reminded of all the characters DC revised in the late ‘80s, following Crisis On Infinite Earths. Hawkman may be the most infamous of these, since a whole new character had to be invented (shades of the Doombots!) to explain a big chunk of “his” appearances. Still, I keep coming back to Jason Todd, conceived originally as a rather obvious update of Dick Grayson, right down to the murdered-aerialist parents. Jason spent the better part of three years as a fixture of Batman and Detective, which in those days were interconnected in “biweekly storytelling” fashion. Readers got to know Jason — who wasn’t as obnoxious as his revamped version, but who was comparatively more bland — and got to see him develop relationships with Bruce, Alfred, and Dick. (Jason showed up in a few issues of New Teen Titans as well.) Regardless, when the combination of Frank Miller’s Dark Knight and “Batman: Year One” set the stage for a grittier Batman, the more benign Jason went away. While Batman and Robin’s pre-COIE adventures probably still held together in terms of plot, Jason’s changes altered those relationships to various degrees.

    Allowing the Batman and Green Lantern books to “keep their histories,” while the rest of the New-52 has its collective slate wiped, strikes me as the inverse of Jason’s situation. Just as re-reading the early Jason Todd stories in light of his personal revamp forces one to reconsider them, re-reading something like “The Sinestro Corps War” invites a similar, additional layer of analysis. However, reading current issues of Green Lantern or Batman offers some distance from the pre-relaunch stories, because they are presented as “of the moment.” They will probably also hold up in isolation (i.e., if you only re-read Johns’ GL), because as far as those titles are concerned, the New-52 relaunch had little, if any, effect.

    Where this really hurts DC is in its attempts to cultivate a seamless superhero universe across multiple unrelated titles, and (I suspect) particularly when those titles are collected. You can’t go from Infinite Crisis to “Sinestro Corps,” Blackest Night, and the current Indigo Tribe storyline without adjusting your expectations at least slightly about the players. I’m even wondering about the status of a certain villain from the pre-relaunch Detective Comics suddenly showing up in one of the New-52 Bat-books.

    I do believe that the New-52 titles are still well-suited to telling accessible stories which use continuity effectively. Even the compressed timeline may turn out to be elegantly simple. Still, watching it unfold has not been altogether smooth. All the highlights of Batman and GL history may now fit into five years, but losing the details is giving me a bit of a headache.

  • #2
    Is easier if you see it from Kyle's perspective: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAqpY1RPbVY

    After that, Kyle then returns with Hal corpse in Rebirth.

    Noct
    Sinestro's Sparring Partner
    Last edited by Noct; 04-24-2012, 11:01 PM.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by GL13 View Post
      Here, then, are my GL bullet points:

      – Hal, Green Arrow, and the Guardian called the “Old-Timer” begin their cross-country soul-searching. This may be where Hal’s susceptibility to Parallax starts.
      Most likely out of the window thanks to the revamped, much younger Ollie Queen that doesn't go along well with Hal in Justice League #8.

      Crisis On Infinite Earths: Guy comes out of his coma, the Anti-Monitor attacks Oa and kills several Guardians, and one faction of Guardians reactivates Guy and Hal.
      We know that there has never been any contact between New Earth 1 and New Earth 2. Billy hadn't been Shazam back then, Barry never died, Supergirl wasn't around to sacrifice herself. The only indication that COIE happened at all (even in a drastically retconned) way was one line about Don Hall's death in Hawk & Liefeld #1.

      – Mongul destroys Coast City. Hal helps Superman stop Mongul. Hal then goes nuts, killing the Guardians and several GLs before giving in to Parallax.
      We know that Steel has a different origin now, tied to Sam Lane and Metallo. We know that Superboy wasn't around back then, neither were other key players in the Death & Return saga (Matrix Supergirl, the Max Lord Justice League, etc). Which leaves the destruction of Coast City in very unclear terms.

      – Kyle Rayner becomes the last GL. Guy becomes Warrior. John becomes a Darkstar.
      Not sure about Guy and John. Those are wrinkles that I can see them deleting for simplification's sake.

      – Zero Hour: Parallax tries to restart time. During a later battle between Hal and Kyle, Oa is destroyed.
      Oa has never been destroyed, according to the aftermath of the Sinestro Corps War. And if Zero Hour happened at all, it had to have happened very differently, without the Golden Age characters, Wally West, Green Arrow or Damage. Hawk & Liefeld makes it seem like Hank Hall has never been Extant. And Parallax never wanted to turn back time, his only goal was to spread fear.

      – The Final Night: Parallax sacrifices himself to restart the Sun.
      With key players like the post-Zero Hour Legion missing, of course.

      – Day of Judgment: Hal (still dead) becomes the Spectre’s new host.
      I think it's safe to say that the JSA member The Spectre has never existed outside of Earth 2. Since there has never been a JSA in the Newfiftytwoniverse.

      – Green Lantern Legacy: The Last Will And Testament Of Hal Jordan: Using a unique power ring, Tom Kalmaku rebuilds Oa.
      An Oa that had never been destroyed to begin with.

      Comment


      • #4
        For this DCnU to work, most of Hal and the GLC history needs to just be wiped clean. Some of it already has anyway.

        – Hal is recruited by Abin Sur. He soon meets the Guardians and various other Lanterns; and joins the Justice League.
        Keep it.

        – A Guardian “introduces” Hal to Guy Gardner.
        Gone.

        – Hal, Green Arrow, and the Guardian called the “Old-Timer” begin their cross-country soul-searching. This may be where Hal’s susceptibility to Parallax starts.
        HTH days? Gone. Ollie isn't the same age or guy anymore. So stop beating around the bush and get rid of it. I don't want the turd they are passing off as GA these days living off the coat tails of O'Neil and Adams. Just say it didn't happen in this universe. It was barely believable it happened in the last, post Crisis, universe. Leave it in the pre Crisis timeline where it belongs.

        – When Guy is injured, John Stewart becomes Hal’s deputy.

        – Guy comes back briefly, but Sinestro puts him in a coma.
        Guy and John's intro to the GL books? Gone. They've already done this military thing with John, might as well go all the way. Get rid of Guy's time in a coma, and years he spent acting like a retard. The whole JLI era is gone anyway. Might as well craft new origins for these two guys. Kari Limbo, the battery blowing up, Sinestro's involvement, just chuck it. DC already pissed on their history, just finish the job.


        – After Hal spends too much time protecting Ferris Air, the Guardians exile Hal from Earth for a year.
        gone. A waste of a year when you only have 5 to account for.

        – Shortly after Hal comes back, he quits the Corps in favor of Carol Ferris. John becomes Sector 2814′s main GL.
        Just say Hal quit when the Crisis started, and both Guy and John got promoted, with some drama over who was who's backup. Get rid of the part where Hal even left Earth.

        – Crisis On Infinite Earths: Guy comes out of his coma, the Anti-Monitor attacks Oa and kills several Guardians, and one faction of Guardians reactivates Guy and Hal.
        There was some kind of Crisis, but it'll never really be recapped so just say John and Guy made their debuts here. Hal was without his ring for a few months at most and helped at the end of the Crisis.

        – The Guardians and Zamarons leave this dimension to spawn. A group of Lanterns relocates (with Hal and John) to Earth.

        – The Manhunters (the Guardians’ old agents) strike at Earth’s super-folk, trying to destroy the superpowered “New Guardians.”

        – The GL Corps is reduced to four (Hal, John, Guy, and Ch’p) after the Central Power Battery is destroyed.

        – Hal sports grey temples. Hal, John, and Guy stop the Old-Timer from kidnapping the Earth cities he visited. The Guardians return and restore the GL Corps. John stays on Oa to oversee the “Mosaic” communities.
        Get rid of all of that shit. Waste of space.

        – Mongul destroys Coast City. Hal helps Superman stop Mongul. Hal then goes nuts, killing the Guardians and several GLs before giving in to Parallax.
        The Mongul stuff will possibly become cannon at some point, though I'd rather get rid of all of it. Hal was maybe possessed by Parallax for a few months before Kyle saved him. Ke never killed Killowog or any Guardians. They limped off to lick their wounds while Ganthet mentored Kyle.

        – Kyle Rayner becomes the last GL. Guy becomes Warrior. John becomes a Darkstar.
        Ok on Kyle, chuck the Warrior and Darkstar parts. They are a fucking embarrassment.

        – Zero Hour: Parallax tries to restart time. During a later battle between Hal and Kyle, Oa is destroyed.
        Gone. No reason for that to exist anymore. Oa has always been in one peice. All of Oa's cities and secrets are ancient an unspoiled.


        – The Final Night: Parallax sacrifices himself to restart the Sun.
        I suppose. If it's really neccessary.

        – A younger, time-lost Hal teams up with Kyle for a short while, but of course Parallax puts a stop to that. Kyle is left with a power ring which can make other power rings.

        – Day of Judgment: Hal (still dead) becomes the Spectre’s new host.

        – Green Lantern Legacy: The Last Will And Testament Of Hal Jordan: Using a unique power ring, Tom Kalmaku rebuilds Oa. Soon afterwards (GL vol. 3 #150), Kyle expends his recently-acquired Ion power to refuel the Central Power Battery and bring back the Guardians.
        Get rid of ALL of that. Kyle had some adventures and became skilled with the ring. The Guardians laid low but were all still alive. Oa was never destroyed, Killowog never died, and the Corps certainly was never destroyed TWICE in 5 years. Nor was John crippled twice.

        – Green Lantern: Rebirth: Hal is revived, Parallax is defeated, and Hal, Guy, and John become GLs again.

        At this point we are into Geoff Johns’ run as GL writer, so I’m assuming everything from Rebirth forwards is still generally valid. This includes the Rainbow Lanterns, Blackest Night, and “War of the Green Lanterns.”
        Let Rebirth be retconned. Guy was never a Tatanka rippoff, Hal was never the Spectre. If Johns loves retcons so much, let him enjoy having his own work overturned. You reap what you sow. I'm all for getting rid of the Hal as Parallax thing; might as well completely redo it and Kyle's involvement. Four GL's is a lot of guys in 5 years. As much storytelling dead weight needs to be cleared out as possible.



        Jade? Gone. JSA ties? Gone.

        Comment


        • #5
          I purposely didn't read Michael's post until now to see how his ideas matched up with mine without being influenced by them. We seem to be on the same page on a number of things on this new timeline.

          Comment


          • #6
            Awesome ideas, Dave. Especially your ET/Rebirth retcon. I love ET and I'm not a fan of Rebirth by any stretch, but merging the two into a single story -- Hal is possessed, goes off and tries to "correct" things, Kyle ultimately saves him -- makes perfect logical sense for the DCnU.
            The last fan of 1990s comics
            Read my Green Lantern blog The Indigo Tribe

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by SD80MAC View Post
              Awesome ideas, Dave. Especially your ET/Rebirth retcon. I love ET and I'm not a fan of Rebirth by any stretch, but merging the two into a single story -- Hal is possessed, goes off and tries to "correct" things, Kyle ultimately saves him -- makes perfect logical sense for the DCnU.
              I think so. Especially if numerous forgettable "events" are no longer cannon; it helps squeeze everything together. Hal of the people that took part in these crossover events don't even exist in the DCnU.

              I figure Kyle still gets blindsided by Ganthet in the alley; that IS his origin. Ganthet was around, so just say he helped Kyle here and there, but Kyle just got better and better with the ring. He ends up saving Hal wihich puts the return of the GLC into motion, which was always a huge motivation for Kyle, to see it all come back. And that cements Kyle's existence as not being just another generic human lantern. He was there for a REASON.

              Granted, something still needs to be done with Guy and John. Guy can stand on his own because he has a wonderful, fleshed out character, but John is kind of there with his dick hanging in the breeze waiting for a reason to exist again.

              Comment


              • #8
                And more importantly, Kyle's no longer the denigrated joke he was up until GLNG.

                Guy and John could be replacements for Hal when the latter was incapacitated at different times. Put Hal in a coma for a while; along comes Guy. Hal and Guy get captured by an alien army or some shit...the Guardians induct John the soldier to bust 'em out. I dunno, I'm not a writer.
                The last fan of 1990s comics
                Read my Green Lantern blog The Indigo Tribe

                Comment


                • #9
                  And as much as I HATE this whole DCnU/52 thing and casting aside characters people love, there IS a benefit to it. And that is you can jettison a LOT of clutter and shitty stories that have built up over the years.

                  Armageddon 2001? Gone.

                  Bloodlines? Gone.

                  War Of The Gods? Gone.

                  Zero Sour, Joker's Last Testicle, JLApe, Crisis 2 and 3, Legends, Millenium, Cosmic Odyssey, Invasion, Eclipso, Trinity, Underworld, Legends, Amazons Attack, One Million, Our Worlds At War, Day Of Judgement, Genesis, and a whole bunch of other REALLY forgettable stories can go away now. If all that shit happened in the last 5 years, then this was the most important 5 years in human history.

                  And that goes for a lot of stuff that happened inside the books. Why should Hal being a truck driver ever be mentioned again? Or being in space for a whole year? It just needs to go away.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Big Daddy Dave View Post
                    Cosmic Odyssey
                    Only way this is gone is if they decided to beat John up for destroying Mogo INSTEAD, rather than ALSO. John being "responsible" for the destruction of Xanshi has become one of the character's most defining moments. And with Fatality still around, I kind of doubt this is truly gone.

                    (And for the record, I LIKED the Eclipso crossover. Could be nostalgia talking, though, as it was the first big crossover event that I actually bought in to.)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      John Stewart has a purpose. He is there to constantly be put on trials for murder.....you know....like all black people.
                      I LOVE conspiracy theorists. They are like human versions of the cymbal clapping, dancing monkeys. No one takes them all that seriously and they get bored with them after about 10 minutes.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by SD80MAC View Post
                        And more importantly, Kyle's no longer the denigrated joke he was up until GLNG.

                        Guy and John could be replacements for Hal when the latter was incapacitated at different times. Put Hal in a coma for a while; along comes Guy. Hal and Guy get captured by an alien army or some shit...the Guardians induct John the soldier to bust 'em out. I dunno, I'm not a writer.
                        I figure their debuts had to happen right on top of each other. Instead of saying it happened a bunch of times with John, just say it was once when Hal quit to boink Carol. Guardians couldn't decide on Guy or John, so both were used during a Crisis we'll never hear much about. This could be why Guy had such problems with John and Hal, not because he was brain damaged in a coma, but because he was an asshole who didn't like not being top dog. But both John and Hal made a name for themselves and performed above expectations during the Crisis. Hal then made his return in the 4th quarter to help out and the trinity was started.

                        Kyle starts off alone so everyone doubts him until he proves he wasn't an accident and does everything he can to bring back the corps. With a 5 year timeline, we're not talking about a lot of time here, so Kyle, Guy and even Kyle have almost as much experience as Hal.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Lantern A-train View Post
                          John Stewart has a purpose. He is there to constantly be put on trials for murder.....you know....like all black people.
                          And why he has his white friends, to talk to the cops and get him out of trouble!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I LOVE conspiracy theorists. They are like human versions of the cymbal clapping, dancing monkeys. No one takes them all that seriously and they get bored with them after about 10 minutes.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mister Ed View Post
                              Only way this is gone is if they decided to beat John up for destroying Mogo INSTEAD, rather than ALSO. John being "responsible" for the destruction of Xanshi has become one of the character's most defining moments. And with Fatality still around, I kind of doubt this is truly gone.

                              (And for the record, I LIKED the Eclipso crossover. Could be nostalgia talking, though, as it was the first big crossover event that I actually bought in to.)
                              Say Mogo instead. Isn't one planet enough?

                              And good riddance to his sister from that MASH story they ripped off top to bottom. And maybe it's time to get rid of his marriage to Katma altogether. She does no good as an old ghost that fans don't even remember.

                              Fuck Fatality BTW. I don't even think the writers remember why she's there.

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