So DC’s Rebirth one shot is here and the table has been set for their company wide relaunch starting next week. Reaction to the one shot has been mostly very good. This event was a year in the making. There was chatter that last year’s Convergence was supposed to be the big reset; that didn’t end up being true of course, but it did lay some groundwork that would be followed up in stories that came after.
The most important thing to come out of it was the pre-Flashpoint Superman and Lois Lane being inserted into the current universe and making their way to Earth Prime. where their story was covered in the Lois and Clark limited series. There were some other storylines that paved the way towards what will be going on now:
- The Darkseid War arc in Justice League
- The ‘Truth’ Superman arc going across Superman, Action Comics, and Superman/Wonder Woman where he lost most of his powers and had to find a way to get them back
- The eight part ‘Super League’ crossover that just finished up, running through Action Comics, Superman, Superman/Wonder Woman, and Batman/Superman
- The Titans Hunt limited series, that reestablished the original Teen Titans as a group for their upcoming new series, Titans
Most of the other main ongoing titles also found their way towards a holding place that will be picked up under the new status quo, and a lot of the titles that debuted during DC You came to an end altogether (Black Canary, We are Robin, Robin – Son of Batman, Starfire, Red Hood & Arsenal, Dr. Fate, and Midnighter among others). As for the events of New 52, they’re not erased. What happened there still counts, and the new characters that sprang up during those years are not being disappeared, thank God. So from the looks of things my previous assertion that DC is trying to purge the things from New 52 that went over badly (Superman, Superman and Wonder Woman being an item instead of the he and Lois Lane, Green Arrow and Black Canary not being together), keep what went well (Scott Snyder writing Batman stories, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, the Lanterns), bring back some of the things that were badly missed (the old school Teen Titans as a team, Superman and Lois Lane together), and add some new things (the New Superman book). And it looks very promising. As someone who enjoyed most of the New 52 stuff I understand that over time I was part of a shrinking minority so something had to be done. I got n problem with that, and whatever makes more people happy to buy comics I’m here for.
Now what about the one shot itself? The best way I could sum it up is…Wally West comes home. It centers around the original Wally trying to get out of the Speed Force but needing an anchor to help pull him out, going to different people hoping to make the connection needed to make the leap. While this is going on we get a West-narrated explanation of his own origin, how New 52 world came to be, what kind of otherworldly manipulation altered the timeline making the changed world what it was. And the money panel is when Wally reunites with his mentor Barry Allen late in the story:
The story speaks of an pending threat but still allows for a hopeful tone throughout, which is what many say was missing throughout the New 52 run. DC has gotten labeled the darker of the two major comic companies. While I think that can mostly be attributed to Batman, they did go with a much more grim tone for characters like Green Arrow and did not do much with more fun characters like Booster Gold. A return of a brighter tone should only help matters going forward. The trick of course is to be different from Marvel but not in a way that turns people off. We’ll see if they can do that but it looks to be off to a good start.