It’s always been a problem for DC comics, and every now and then they want to address it. Generations Forged #1 is another attempt at smoothing out decades of continuity for long-time fans.
Since fans started asking, “How can Batman in current comics be the same character that fought crime in the 1940s?” DC has struggled with providing answers. It started with Alternate Earths, including Earth 1 and 2 and X and S, where they could dump certain runs and explain them away easily enough by saying that those stories happened here, then evolved into the Crisis series of titles that would try and tidy things up.
When Marv Wolfman and George Perez handed us the 12 issue maxi-series Crisis On Infinite Earths, they probably hoped that the convoluted history of DC would be laid to rest once and for all. But it didn’t. It only led to creative teams in the future deciding to reboot, revamp or deconstruct the epic tales that came before them.
Marvel had it easier; they started in the ’60s, explained away the Golden Age heroes that they used, then pretty much felt that ignoring it was the best way, most of the time.
Now that the idea of parallel universes and alternate realities is so much in the everyday vocabulary of geek fandom, it allows the ideas of a multitude of characters all running around in other times and places to have some kind of logical validity. So DC has decided that The Linearverse is now the last word in packaging up DC continuity and presenting it to the readers in a neat package.
Generations Forged #1 hits the stands today and this new idea for the paths of the DC characters is explained, sort of. The basic premise is that everything that has happened, happened, and the reason? Well in this version of events, characters in The Linearverse are in fact the same as they have always been, it’s just things go slower here.
Waverider, a Linear Man don’t cha know, takes Batman back to 1939 and explains things for himself there, “Your youth and vitality will endure for decades enabling you to be effective far longer than the universal norm.”
And that’s pretty much the same now for every character in the DC Universe. They all age slowly, and everything that happened, happened, so to speak.
It goes onto point out that the worlds that may have been destroyed in previous outings are probably still out there to this day, not gone, just “hidden”,
So once again, fans of DC are confronted with another version of events that I am sure some readers will find oddly frustrating, and despite probably the best of intentions time will tell if fans will be on board with this or more importantly, decide they just don’t care anymore.
Generations Forged #1 is out now.