The various rumors swirling around Star Wars Episode VII seem to imply that the original actors will be playing versions of themselves that are, like the actors themselves, 30 years down the line from the Battle Of Endor.  I find myself enjoying that idea, wondering what a 70-year-old Han Solo might be up to, or what kind of fighting techniques would be most appropriate for 62-year-old Luke Skywalker, legendary balancer of The Force.  There are problems with that sort of story-telling (notably seen in the recent 50th Anniversary Doctor Who special, wherein an elderly Tom Baker made an appearance, while the other retirement-age Doctors probably wouldn’t have fit the story being told), but for every negative, there’s a bright side.  The “twenty minutes into the future” setting of Marvel’s Spider-Girl series gave us a fiftyish Peter Parker, having given up his mantle to teenage daughter May, and tried to show us the realistic consequences of Spider-Man’s heroic life.  What might Batman comics be like if Bruce Wayne had aged realistically from his first appearance in 1939?  Thereupon hangs today’s query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) sees what’s become of me, when I look around at my possibilities, asking: What story would you most like to see taking place in “real time” and why?

The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

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9 Comments

  1. December 5, 2013 at 11:32 am — Reply

    Sci-fi and fantasy drama in general. While some do show the progress of time, many of them seem to be stuck in a place where episodes could be interchangeable, and we only see snippets of the story. I’d prefer a linear story that takes cause and effect into the equation, showing not just the big battles and the crisis they face, but also little things like battle planning or starship repair or all the other little things that usually happen off camera.

  2. Rome
    December 5, 2013 at 11:56 am — Reply

    The X-men. They have half-heartedly tried this a few times, but I find the X-men’s issues stale in our current world. The children of mutants dealing with a world that has already had a generation (or two) of mutants who have come before may make for some more compelling stories.

    If anything, they’ve attempted this in the most backward way by importing the teen x-ers into our modern world, but who cares when the ‘grown-up’ Cyclops and Beasts are only some 10 years older in the comics.

  3. Martin Johnstone
    December 5, 2013 at 5:26 pm — Reply

    I really enjoy that 2000AD has Dredd age in real time.

  4. December 5, 2013 at 5:31 pm — Reply

    I wanted it to happen to Ultimate Peter Parker for the longest time, before he died. It seemed to demean everything he did that, that he’d been through, that he never aged, that he never got to grow up and become the inspiring strong character his trials forged him into. And now that he’s dead(and his universe to, possibly, follow)… it’s even more tragic.
    And Buffy – I’d kinda love a series return where she’s aged a bit but Spike and Angel are still as young as they’ve ever looked. Which sadly isn’t possible ’cause James Marsters and David Boreanz have aged just as much as Sarah-Michelle Gellar has.

    • December 5, 2013 at 7:42 pm — Reply

      Don’t the Buffy comics sort of do that since they are canon rather than an expanded universe? A TV show would be great, but like you said, with the actors aging it just wouldn’t be that feasible.

      • December 6, 2013 at 6:55 am — Reply

        I’m not certain. The difference between “Canon” and “Expanded Universe” is a grey area for me, since very few people have read the Season 8 & 9 material, and they have been time-shifted to take place in “Present Day” setting. Granted, there isn’t a whole lot of difference between taking place in 2004 and 2013, but it’s not the same as having more TV Buffy.

        As for aging actors changing the nature of a work, I have to say that’s part of the appeal to me. Comics get away with having little to no development, or worse, rehashing what has gone before in the name of “modernizing.” With an actor who ages realistically, that’s less of an issue.

        • December 6, 2013 at 9:39 am — Reply

          But the issue here is Angel and Spike being immortal, the aging is a bit of a problem. Buffy and the other Scoobies aging isn’t an issue at all, but the vampires aging does become problematic. Even the actors thought so, as both Angel and Spike actors said something along the lines of only coming back to the character if it happens before a certain number of years (which I believe have passed) because they would be showing signs of age.

  5. Kirby
    December 5, 2013 at 9:48 pm — Reply

    I really kind of wish the Pokémon anime did so. So even if they swapped out protagonists in season 15 or what have you, you’d see a 25 year-old Ash, walk in, kicking butt, and taking names.

  6. December 6, 2013 at 12:53 pm — Reply

    I’d like to see a Batman comic that ignored the rest and had the characters age, die, and otherwise change.

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