With the release of DC's December solicits it's increasingly clear that (as previously mentioned) the winds of change have blown through the editorial halls of DC and, as my great-grandmother would have said in heavily-accented English, "blowed der stink out".
Tim Drake is back as Robin in his own solo comic.
After rescuing the Cheetah from the clutches of the evil International Milk Company, Wonder Woman must set her sights on the real monsters behind it all…the gods of fear and panic, Phobos and Deimos. Wonder Woman, Cheetah, the evil International Milk Company, Phobos and Deimos. The only thing that sentence lacks is ETTA CANDY to make it perfect.
|The Evil International Milk Company.|
With that phrase, DC just won back my heart.
|I want to see Flash dealing with villains and threats like a superhero, not fussing fetidly with "speed force" and internal personal legacy nonsense like a Regency novel character.|
Two Tom King comics are ending, one in which he kills a Wayne family member and the one where he killed a Green Lantern. The ending of Tom King comics is always a good sign.
Two-Face is back menacing Renee Montoya at the GCPD. Or is he on her side...? Regardless, it's old school comics.
|Never count Two-Face out; he's VERY well connected.|
DC: Mech is ending. If you don't know what it is, just be glad. So is DC vs. Vampires (ugh).
Geoff Johns is bringing back the Justice Society (again).
|Which he's been trying to do since 2016, if you haven't been keeping track.|
Jaime Reyes is back to Blue Beetling.
Kal-El is back on Earth and here to stay.
Lady Cop is back (although she's in the hands of Tom King, so expect her to be kicked to death by the Killer in Boots).
And perhaps most dramatically:
|The Sensational Character Find of 2022|
Gone are the remnants of Dan Didio's 5G plan to Kill Everyone's Childhood and replace all heroes with replicants containing only his DNA. His crisis-driven/Crisis-driving style gave us a mess of messes for nearly two decades before the backlash overwhelmed his momentum two years ago and he was removed as swiftly, completely, and mysteriously as if he were a victim in a '70s Spectre story.
|"I can't find Dan; anybody know where he is?"|
"Last time I saw him, he was... headed out."
Big ships turn slowly. Since that change was a sudden one, there was no real plan in place to follow it and it showed. Various unpleasant initiatives with Didio's sticky DNA all over them--darkly cynical gigantic crossover events like DCeased and *snort* Dark Crisis--have had to wind their way to a close, like dying automata from a passing steampunk era.
|"ZOMG THE JUSTICE LEAGUE IS DEAD and now they're going to replace them with legacy characters!"|
Uh-huh. Yes. Yes, I'm sure they are.
One of those unpleasant initiatives is Damian Wayne, a character who truly personifies Didio's approach to things. "Robin is currently a super-competent, well adjusted guy named Tim Drake. He's been Robin for over 25 years; as long as Dick Grayson had been when the Batman '66 TV show began. Let's dump him for Batman's illegitimate son from an Elseworlds story, who's an unlikeable murderous little ****." Didio didn't come up with the idea but he supported it 1000% percent.
In the old days, that would have been a one-issue "fear of being replaced as partner" story, and the kid would have been revealed as a fake by the end, AND redeemed himself by taking a bullet for Dick from some random gangster and dying on the spot, with a few final words of regret. Instead, we've been trapped in a 15-year-long "Ransom of Red Chief" scenario.
|Maybe Damian can pair up with Nightman:|
"Nightman and Red Chief".
Batman versus Robin is pretty clearly about taking Damian out of the Robin role with Tim Drake going back into it.
All of the above is part of the real-world internal war for The Soul of the DCU, one that's been raging for 20 years. If Crisis on Infinite Earths issued in (or at least coincided with) the beginning of roughly 15-year Dark Era in the DCU (with its '90s exxxtreme badassery and antiherohood), the following 20 years has been a grand Zoroastrian battle between Dan Didio's forces of Darkness and Geoff Johns' forces of Light.
|Look, just read Action Philosophers, okay? All of it. All. Of. It.|
For 20 years, Didio was pushing his vision for the DCU and Johns another and they were, at heart, as completely opposed as Uxas and Izaya. At one point, Tom King (Didio's Desaad) had Wally West going insane and murdering other heroes at the very same time Geoff Johns was bringing him back as the Personification of Hope in the DCU. Johns eventually fell back and distanced himself from DC, given how entrenched Didio's forces were... but all that changed two years ago.
And now Johnsian apostle Mark Waid is writing the comic that's shuffling Damian off and making way for Tim Drake, as well as bringing back to life Alfred, whom Tom King gratuitously killed with Didio's permission (or at his insistence). Didio's plan to replace the original and legacy characters beloved by Johns with creations from his own stable was struck down by a corporate thunderbolt. Johns has returned and is bringing back the Justice Society, which he was blocked from doing properly six years ago during Rebirth, his last big push to de-darken the Didioverse. Really, the biggest target left would be to pry the Legion--DC's ultimate symbol of an optimistic future of heroic legacy--out of the cold dead literary hands of Didio's Granny Goodness, Brian Mumblecore Bendis.
Yes. It seems increasingly clear who has won the war for The Soul of the DCU.
|The Sensational Character Find of 2022|