This past weekend, Dan DiDio set the Intardwebz ablaze when he made the announcement that the Crisis events from the last thirty years, including Crisis on Infinite Earths, never happened in the New DC Universe.

Here is the post from DiDio’s Facebook page:

Brace yourself, but after further review, there have been no Crisis events in the New DCU.

Which was then followed by:

For those in crisis over Crisis, let me clarify. The topic of Crisis was much discussed among the editors and talent working on The New 52. With so many characters and histories restarting, major events like Crisis are harder to place when they work for some and not for others. (that was one of the problems coming out of the original Crisis). While we are starting aprx five years into our heroes’ lives, we are focused on the characters present and future, and past histories will be revealed as the stories dictate. Yes, there have been “crisis” in our characters lives, but they aren’t exactly the Crisis you read before, they can’t be. Now, what this means for characters seen and unseen…… well, that’s the fun of The New 52, infinite stories, infinite possibilities, with the best yet to come.

Thanks, as always for your interest and enthusiasm in The New 52. DD

P.S. that’s the last time I try and answer a Facebook question before rushing out for dinner. :)

 

I’m sure there are going to be a lot of people who are ready to take to the streets with burning copies of Countdown to Final Crisis looking to storm the headquarters of DC Comics (which may or may not be in NYC much longer anyway), but to be honest, do you really want to keep Zero Hour in continuity?  Now that the relaunch has occurred, and the characters are living in a new universe, does it really matter that Identity Crisis may never have happened?  Years ago, DC shut the doors on the multiverse, and while some were understandably upset, many comic readers – and especially new comic readers, have no concept of the mish-mashed continuity that required a major reboot (followed by decades of other reboots) in order to get to where we are today.

This is new continuity, and in the new continuity, there is a new multiverse, and that multiverse hasn’t needed a crisis level event…yet.  And considering the high sales that the first month of the New 52 brought to the company, I don’t think we’ll be seeing a return to the pre-Crisis continuity anytime soon.

But what about those who want to revel in the Crisis on Infinite Earths tales because they read it when it originally came out, have 9.8 CGC copies of all the titles (including the Death of Supergirl) slabbed and tucked away in their safe, and own every trade and hardcover that DC released?  I say enjoy them.  Go back and reread your favorite comics again and again, because that’s kind of the point, isn’t it?

Don’t like the new Blue Beetle title? Go back and read Jaime’s adventures after the last Crisis event.  Or go back further and read Ted Kord, or if you are daring, Dan Garrett’s adventures in the Golden Age.  They are available if you know where to look, and are willing to part with some of your hard earned money.  So are seventy years worth of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Captain Marvel, and the rest of the DC pantheon.  Yes, even Ambush Bug.  I love what DC did during 52, and though I’m disappointed many of those epic story moments have disappeared, I can still go back and re-read 52 anytime I want.

If you love something, it will always be there to keep you entertained on those long winter nights, the times you need a pick me up, or want a refreshing look back at the way companies used to do things.  But if you’ve never heard of THE Crisis, and you don’t care that Batman fought different versions of himself during Final Crises, then the news that Crisis level events haven’t happened yet in the new DC Universe shouldn’t come as a big surprise.  In order for a company to survive it needs to move forward, try different things, and not get mired down in the past, and that is exactly what DC is trying to do.  If it doesn’t work this time, I’m sure they won’t hesitate to try another relaunch.

That being said, I’m sure you’re going to use the comment section to share your thoughts…

The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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35 Comments

  1. Lloyd Hayes
    October 3, 2011 at 8:45 am — Reply

    That being said, I’m sure you’re going to use the comment section to share your thoughts…

    Actually I believe you summed it up perfectly. Thanks.

  2. Navarre
    October 3, 2011 at 9:01 am — Reply

    It really doesn’t seem that unusual for a comic publisher. Things are retconned, rebooted, and undone all the time.

    Continuity = Death = Really?

  3. MarkW
    October 3, 2011 at 9:16 am — Reply

    Great post Stephen, especially the last three paragraphs. Whether something officially considered in current continuity or not, everything that’s been published still happened and is still there for you to enjoy. For example, Mark Waid’s Wally West Flash run and the late-40’s JSA stories are still around to be enjoyed even if neither seem to be part of the new universe.

    But I guess I kind of assumed it was obvious at least the first two Crisis’ didn’t happen in the new universe. I’m not even sure Roy Thomas at the peak of his powers could shoehorn the original Crisis into the DCnU.

    • October 3, 2011 at 6:47 pm — Reply

      agreed, I guess an official announcement needed to be made but this was my assumption from the beginning.

      If you listen to the MSP then you know my thoughts on how continuity often chokes the life out of comics, I for one welcome our new 5-year-old overlords.

      • October 3, 2011 at 7:16 pm — Reply

        agreed, I guess an official announcement needed to be made but this was my assumption from the beginning.

        Yep. I am often Rodrigo’s polar opposite in terms of continuity, and I also believe that there’s no way for a Crisis (any of them) to have any meaning in the short timeframe of the new DCU.

  4. TaZ
    October 3, 2011 at 9:35 am — Reply

    Kinda what I assumed. The good news is that if there were no “Crisis” then the “multiverse” isn’t limited to 52 versions, now is it? And Earth-2 can be a Justice Society that was not affected by the those events and stories can be done that continue with the JSA/Infinity, Inc. storylines, right? (Please, in the name of Roy Thomas, say “RIGHT”!). I would much rather see the Marvel Family and JSA characters brought back in “separate universes” if the current DCU will be maintaining the status quo.

  5. Frank
    October 3, 2011 at 10:42 am — Reply

    A good comic is a good comic whether it is in ‘continuity’ or not. A lot of the Gold and Silver Age comics are no longer ‘in continuity’, but they are better stories than some of the junk that has been shoveled out in the past 20 years.
    Think of your favorites as multi-issue “Elseworlds” or “What If’s”.

  6. Michael
    October 3, 2011 at 11:12 am — Reply

    While this could set off a huge row in Fandom At Large (and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it was said with the hopes of creating a huge buzz of some kind) I can’t manage much more than “meh”.

    The story “CRISIS On Infinite Earths” in and of itself changed the very nature of the Crisis referred to in the title. When the story starts out all of the various DC Universes were being merged into one. Once every thing WAS merged into one universe and most of the characters memories were changed the Crisis itself changed. Instead of a whole bunch of differing realities being at risk of annihilation, only one was. And even if the Crisis hadn’t been changed again by various events, the “re-Multiversification” (for lack of a better term) of the DC changed the Crisis again.

    And now it’s been changed (or, more likely, tossed out until they bring it back in in some form) again.

  7. brenton8090
    October 3, 2011 at 11:36 am — Reply

    Like Barry’s mom said in Flashpoint #5- “It still happened. We’ll always have those memories.” Or something like that.

  8. brainypirate
    October 3, 2011 at 12:09 pm — Reply

    I wonder what characters this completely removes from the DCU: Superboy Prime, for instance? And does this mean that the post Zero-Hour Legion doesn’t exist? Or is the LO3W explanation that they’re part of the multiverse preserve them?

    • MarkW
      October 3, 2011 at 12:44 pm — Reply

      It shouldn’t erase either one.

      Post Zero-Hour Legion – Legion of another universe, Earth-247.
      Superboy Prime – Kal El from Earth Prime.

      You don’t need any of the Crisis’ to have happened for a writer to use them in the DCnU.

      And Legion Lost #1 kind of proves that both the post-Zero Hour Legion and Superboy Prime exist in the DCnU, since Gates is present in the DCnU. Though I suppose you could explain that by saying the Flashpoint event changed his origin as a member of the Earth-247 Legion. And the Flashpoint event could have changed the how he got to the retro-boot Legion to something different than the Earth-247 Legion being called to help defeat Superboy Prime.

      Seems like the main “problem” is the changes to Batman’s continuity – which were supposed to be very minor – if Final Crisis never happened.

      • Michael
        October 3, 2011 at 2:09 pm — Reply

        For all intents and purposes, they’re gone/never existed/used to exist/whatever until/unless DC brings back the multiverse.

        • Michael
          October 3, 2011 at 2:36 pm — Reply

          I didn’t get it until I saw it spelled out; I didn’t know DiDio was remarking upon ALL events with “Crisis” in the title (and others that didn’t I’d guess).

          My bad.

          • Michael
            October 3, 2011 at 2:37 pm — Reply

            Grr. Wrong spot.

  9. Scott C.
    October 3, 2011 at 12:21 pm — Reply

    I’m really not privy to what people thought of the COIE when it first came out as I was a bit too young to buy it but when I was finally able to afford it I brought all 12 issues and read the story in its entirety and it made me fall in love with the history of DC. I really had no idea about half the characters which made who’s who in quarter bins a great finds for me as a kid for quite some time. I wanted to know about all of these characters and sad to find they were eliminated or never seen again. Was COIE perfect? As a first time reader the after effects of it were tight enough until you start to get into the entire history and you start to judge things they didn’t happen instead of it standing on its own. Still I’m sorry COIE is no longer in-continuity but I won’t cry over it. Actually what makes me sadder is the state of the entire New 52.
    When DC’s New 52 came into the news my wife asked if I would buy them since I don’t buy singles usually. After a round of Q&A on the subject her final question was “Do you think I would like any of them?” pointing to the supposed starting point of these new series. Without missing a beat I said “No”. Why you may ask? Because I did not think any of the people involved knew how to do it the right way. It all should have been a complete re-boot with origins told. I say this not as though 6 issues need to be spent telling origins. No Morrison handled it best in All-Star where in one page mind you he told you everything you needed to know and what you already probably did know. Not everybody knows Ron Troupe but ask them who’s the editor of the daily planet and fastest they you can say “shazam!” People answer Perry white. He pulled it off. Could someone else do that in one issue? Probably no. Looking at the list of writers they have they may as well asked Rob Liefeld to write his own book! And who would be the perfect writer? Honestly somebody we never heard of. Yes I’m serious. Writers and artists for have peaks and valleys but most just can’t keep the pace. For example: Chris Claremont. Legendary X-Men writer right? How’s Sovereign 7 doing? Oh yeah it’s buried with Brother Power, Gunfire, Anima, Prez and countless others in Paul Levitz’s rose garden. DC comics needs new blood or it will flash off in a bright light of someone’s ipad but this time Superman is not going to save it.

  10. October 3, 2011 at 1:28 pm — Reply

    So, is Don Hall alive or dead? And it is established that Dick Grayson did fill in for Bruce while he was away, but Bruce never died. Is that period where Dick was batman now “Knightfall”?

    • Michael
      October 3, 2011 at 2:07 pm — Reply

      That’s two separate Crisises you’re asking about.

      • Michael
        October 3, 2011 at 2:37 pm — Reply

        I posted this above, but it’s replying to the wrong message I wrote.

        I didn’t get it until I saw it spelled out; I didn’t know DiDio was remarking upon ALL events with “Crisis” in the title (and others that didn’t I’d guess).

        My bad.

        • TaZ
          October 3, 2011 at 4:49 pm — Reply

          1) According to Hawk and Dove #1 Don Hall is one of the few comic characters to have the courtesy to remain dead.
          2) The events surrounding Batman getting knocked off did occur, just not in the context of a reality changing “Crisis”. Based on comments by Bruce, Tim, Damian, Jason and Dick in many of the Batman new launches the events of “The Battle for the Cowl” and the Red Hood/Dick Grayson Batman stories did occur in this “reality”.
          3) The period that Dick Grayson and Damian Wayne were Batman and Robin is simply that and we have no freaking idea what happened before that.

  11. October 3, 2011 at 2:52 pm — Reply

    I’ve been down with the whole “New 52” concept from the beginning. As I’ve said, I feel DC desperately needed this shake-up, but I don’t agree with the “you’re in or you’re out” mentality. I’m sure we all mourn for characters we loved and stories we enjoyed, whether they were changed as part of New 52 or just because a new writer was brought in 5 years ago.

    Only issue I see with removing all of the MANY crises from continuity is I’m curious about the impact that’ll have on the characters. Much hay has been made of the missing Wally West, so I guess the idea of Barry’s death isn’t going to be touched, and obviously we aren’t blaming Jason Todd’s disappearance on a Superboy Prime punch.

    It sounds like this is a way to try to retcon a lot of other retcons. We’ll see if it makes sense.

  12. Galactoss
    October 3, 2011 at 4:07 pm — Reply

    So, next year’s Big DC Event is “FIRST! CRISIS!” then?

    Shameless Internet Snark aside, if they’re rolling all the Crises into one fuzzily-defined, don’t-look-behind-the-curtain event and saying “It doesn’t really matter because look at all these glorious NEW comics you could buy!” then that’s not the worst thing in the world. Assuming they’re reasonably successful at delivering the glorious comics, that is.

  13. GrandHarrier
    October 3, 2011 at 4:13 pm — Reply

    Not happy with this change. It just proves that DC wasn’t being honest with us when they said this wasn’t a reboot. Sorry, but this is now officially a reboot. How could it not be?

  14. Yaksha
    October 3, 2011 at 5:31 pm — Reply

    Oh well, I liked the new 52 I bought (Detective Comic #1 rocks). The funny thing is that I started to read DC comics with Infinite Crisis. Then I collected every Crisis after and Zero Hour too. So I am used to re re boot of the rebooted erased story from the original.

    Did you ever tried to tell a non comic-geek about a single story arc? You can’t, he wouldn’t understand because it ties with plenty of dozen issues from the past that bounce and connect with other stories… for 50 years ago (sometimes).

    So yes it is frustrating but teens won’t read 50 years of comics to understand a whole universe. (Don’t forget that kids from now are tomorrow geek/comic fans adults – wathever you call them… ok it’s scary but true).

  15. Nicholas
    October 3, 2011 at 7:16 pm — Reply

    True that it’s not a reboot. I think it’s pretty obvious what they did, and I do like it. And this is not the first time it’s been done. What they did was take a snippet in the life of every DC property that defines the property best, and assembled them all into one universe.

    Kind of like what they did in the DC Universe Online game, they have characters that are dead and characters that are alive, they just want a universe where all characters are in their own story peak, if you will.

    As X-Files got more convoluted, it had less and less viewers, since each episode relied on a working knowledge of the show’s history and those select few would drop out as the show progressed. X-Files and DC were preventing new readers/viewers from joining the fray.

    By picking these moments in their characters lives and allowing them to appear congruently, anyone who is interested in comics can jump on board without needing to relive the origin stories that everyone already knows. It should have been done a long time ago, from a business standpoint. If businesses aren’t growing, then they are dying.

  16. October 3, 2011 at 7:18 pm — Reply

    So yes it is frustrating but teens won’t read 50 years of comics to understand a whole universe. (Don’t forget that kids from now are tomorrow geek/comic fans adults – wathever you call them… ok it’s scary but true).

    Oh, some will. Just not enough to keep the industry afloat… Not anymore, anyways.

  17. Robbie
    October 3, 2011 at 7:25 pm — Reply

    This is all well and good. However, it does not answer the most important DCU continuity question….

    Where is Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew?!?!

  18. Belmont
    October 3, 2011 at 7:55 pm — Reply

    With this going on. Thankful that I’m getting of this last train,(52 Relaunch/reboot) west………

  19. eric
    October 3, 2011 at 9:02 pm — Reply

    Final nail in the coffin for me for comic books period. I will start selling my long boxes now. I will cuddle up with my TPB and I love the first Crisis. Dodo has done it for me. I cant wait to sell back the entire countdown and 52.Would love to burn it but gotta get something out of it if it is fifty cents per copy. FU Dodo.

    • October 4, 2011 at 6:58 am — Reply

      I cant wait to sell back the entire countdown and 52.

      Not entirely sure that anyone is buying, unless you go to a book reseller who guarantees sales. And 50 cents per copy is unlikely…

  20. wdchefdave
    October 3, 2011 at 10:55 pm — Reply

    Over the past twenty or so years, DC has had their history re-written by tons of talented and non-talented people. I would “peek in” every now and then, and leave. A stupid battle was still going, and they were paying people to put band-aids on bullet holes! It is time to clear the FBAR!
    Good, great, or ugly… it was time to flush!
    (However, it does scare the crap out of me at how many “creative teams” are involved in this attempted resurrection… and who will hang around if it hits the dirt!?!)
    “Success” has many fathers… and “Failure” is forever an orphan.
    I’ll “peek in” before I’ll spend a penny. I have learned my lesson over these 40+ years of comic book reading.
    Good luck, and Godspeed.

  21. Oldcomicfan
    October 4, 2011 at 7:37 am — Reply

    Crisis didn’t happen?!!! Oh noes!!! Wait, I mean, ho hum. IMHO COIE was an attempt to clean up a horrible continuity mess (50 years of comics that paid no attention to continuity) by issuing a mini-series that was an even larger out-of-continuity mess. So all the extra earths vanished but before the ink way dry the writers and artists went back to doing whichever Hawkman, Flash or Green Lantern they preferred. It got so bad it seemed we were members of a Lantern-of-the-Month club. My opinion is that is DC is going to Relanch their universe, fine, but like every other attempt to reboot the DC universe, it will only last until either sales start to slip or a new editor-in-chief comes on board. I like what I’ve seen of the new 52 but I’ve been burned too many times in the past to really work up any enthusiasm about it.

  22. L1701E
    October 4, 2011 at 12:31 pm — Reply

    Mr. Schleicher, you have stated everything I feel about the new 52 continuity. I do wish though, that they did restart everything from the beginning. I feel they are making the same mistake DC did in 1986 with the original Crisis, altering some histories and keeping others intact. Otherwise that, Mr. Schleicher captured my feelings perfectly.

  23. vincent
    October 5, 2011 at 11:41 am — Reply

    The new 52 is like what was done to the Star Trek franchise….reboot in alternate reality…….anything to make something old ….something new…..its all about the money………….

  24. ~wyntermute~
    October 5, 2011 at 6:39 pm — Reply

    This actually kinda makes me suspect my worst fears will come true: They did this JUST SO THEY COULD REDO Crisises, which tended to be what got them ‘noticed’. :( It’s as though they’ve decided (again) “Okay, let’s do this RIGHT (like post-COIE), with fresh beginnings and no baggage.” That lasted, what, 10 years? Then we had a “crisis” (“Armageddon 2001”, which lead to “Zero Hour”, anybody?). Then they started bringing back the old baggage, because sales dipped when the shock/newness wore off. Things then got muddled & complex (Power Girl, Hawkman, etc), because you were merging gold & silver ages into the Gilver (Sold?) Era. Lather, rinse, repeat. Some industries are cyclical, and it seems that we’re about to recycle the industry. :) For instance, when enough people write in to DC, and Wally’s inevitably returned, what “continuity problems” will THAT create/cure?

    • dirtysock
      October 9, 2011 at 4:18 pm — Reply

      I bet DC’s no further away than two years from having a new DCU version of the Crisis.

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