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  1. #1
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Default "Everything counts / it all happened" ?

    I never read Grant Morrison's critically acclaimed BATMAN run. It's on my comic book bucket list (now there's a thread that needs to be made!), but it's gonna havta wait for now.

    But what fascinates me most about hearing people talk about it is the concept that Morrison insists every single Batman story from 1939 to the present counts and somehow has happened. Nothing is thrown out or forgotten.

    I have so many questions. But chief among them is this:

    Can this "everything counts" idea of his please be applied to Superman and his mythos?

    I would love it if everything from 1938's ACTION COMICS #1 through the present all counted/happened in some narratively tangible way.

    What did Morrison do to Batman to make all his previous histories count? Could it be done for Superman?

    Or is Superman just too complicated for that to work?

  2. #2
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    There's no reason it wouldn't work for Superman, because it's not about addressing and rectifying paradoxes in continuity, it's just essentially stating the all of publication is an open chest. The continuity error of Batman and Son, the association with Son of the Demon, wasn't even blurred to fit.

    In fact though, it's been implied in a number of Superman stories and some well before Morrison penned Batman #655. I think the only reason people point to Batman is because he's more popular.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by daBronzeBomma View Post
    What did Morrison do to Batman to make all his previous histories count?
    I think Morrison excused most of the crazier/wackier silver age stuff as being the result of experimental fear gas by the Scarecrow

    Also Bat Mite was a specific mental defence mechanism that switched Bruce into a deliberate form of insanity to stay one step ahead of his enemies (posing as a Batman of another planet), it was wild.

  4. #4
    Astonishing Member DochaDocha's Avatar
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    Easiest handwave solution would be Hypertime. Everything happened, but in parallel universes.

  5. #5
    Ultimate Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    Its harder with Superman because his reboots and relaunches have featured far more big-time changes than Batman's have. Not to say Batman's mythos hasn't gone through changes, I'm just talking comparatively. I think it could be done, but you have to get more creative with it than even Morrison did with Batman in RIP.
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  6. #6
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    I'd rather it not. I don't like it for Batman, don't want it for Superman. For those of us who haven't been reading comics for decades, it's just confusing. Everything ever being in continuity is just not new reader friendly. Keep a small, compact current continuity, and let the old stuff just be bonus stuff that's fun to read but doesn't count to the understanding of what's going on.

  7. #7
    AT EASE, LOO-SUH! Superlad93's Avatar
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    I'd say it can work specifically best now more than ever for Superman.

    In the case of what Morrison did to make literally everything count for Batman? He mainly played around with the context of things. Some of the events of Batman's long history are dreams, fever dreams from trippin off Joker gas, fail safe mental constructs in case of normal mental function shut down, imaginary creatures that may or may not be there, and death trap nightmares.

    But the biggest trick to it all that Morrison hangs basically the whole thing on is the idea of each Robin representing phase in Bruce's life. He basically made it so everything had to count because there was no way they were getting rid of any of the Robins or Barbra. He got to build 4 or 5 in implied character arcs for Bruce because of this.

    No you don't quite follow the same model because Superman doesn't have that same device, but you can do something similar. Morrison tried to do it with the New 52 Superman, and he recognized the need for Superman to have a clear distinction between eras, so he created the t-shirt and jeans Superman as a representation of everything in the golden age happened in some truncated form or another. He gave Clark a flight ring, an indestructable cape, and a Legion membership to give off the idea that a truncated version of his Superboy adventures and Legion adventures happened.

    Rebirth did a sort of underwhelming, quick and dirty version of what Morrison did with Batman.

    But the skeleton is there. You have Superman's eras set: debut, pre-death, post-death, baby Jon, 10 year old Jon, and now today with 17 year old Jon. It also helps that he now has different suits. Just slot nearly whatever you want for each era. It's not as streamlined so stuff like his golden age will have to be recontextulized. Chris Kent can be a simulation that Clark ran like the old Super Sons story.

    The tools are there, but I think it should be something we get a sense of over time rather than someone hammering it out in one go. Even Morrison didn't hammer it out in one go. It was over a like nearly a decade of Batman comics (that's not even mentioning the implications set by his older JLA run that played directly into it). So, yes, it can very much be done for Superman. He just needs a writer who wants to specifically do it, and a one that will be with the character for years.
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  8. #8
    Astonishing Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Sure. Morrison did an abridged version of that idea in his Action Comics run. He started off with Golden Age Superman fighting for social reform, and fighting with Lex Luthor, General Sam Lane and Metallo. Then Brainiac showed up and Superman’s adventures took on a more Silver Age tone, which is also when the Legion first appeared. Then the final showdown with Vyndykx happened and we had Superdoomsday like the “Modern” Age.

    Rebirth has kept the loose canon of the stories that came before. We know Exile happened for example. There’s plenty of room to retell how things played out for the “modern” Superman.

  9. #9
    Mighty Member Adekis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Superlad93 View Post
    Morrison tried to do it with the New 52 Superman, and he recognized the need for Superman to have a clear distinction between eras, so he created the t-shirt and jeans Superman as a representation of everything in the golden age happened in some truncated form or another. He gave Clark a flight ring, an indestructable cape, and a Legion membership to give off the idea that a truncated version of his Superboy adventures and Legion adventures happened.
    I think Grant Morrison's Action Comics run is kind of as close as we're going to get, because Superman's eras are often marked by truly major continuity shifts. You could get an approximation, but Batman never has to contend with anything as major as whether or not the Kents are alive, or whether or not Clark was ever Superboy as a kid. Morrison leaned hard on the side of the relatively more obscure pre-Crisis era with many of his choices, and I wish it had stuck better.

    I always felt like it might work for the New 52 to be set before Clark marries Lois, since pre-Crisis allegedly happened before post-Crisis, minus Clark's backstory, but since Reborn arbitrarily decided that the New 52 took place after the post-Crisis era and that the pseudo Golden Age never happened at all... forget that, honestly. It was a trash decision.

    The biggest hurdle for me though, is Jon. Damian came into Bruce's life fully formed as a ten year old, or thereabouts. Jon functionally came into Superman comics fully formed as a ten year old, but not Clark's life. Once the next Retcon Wave hit we were suddenly stuck with this truly obnoxious claim from DC that many of Superman's adventures, especially during the New 52, had happened in a totally incompatible way with what we saw, with Clark married and Jon running around growing up in the background. There's no period of Superman comics in which Jon can grow up without messing up other comics, and if we stick to the original, then we've got that confusing ass Convergence backstory that had to go.
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  10. #10
    Astonishing Member superduperman's Avatar
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    I don't think it's possible because there's just too many contradictions. Even Morrison's method with Batman was iffy at best. Rebirth may give someone the opportunity to try but I don't think it would work.
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  11. #11
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vakanai View Post
    I'd rather it not. I don't like it for Batman, don't want it for Superman. For those of us who haven't been reading comics for decades, it's just confusing. Everything ever being in continuity is just not new reader friendly. Keep a small, compact current continuity, and let the old stuff just be bonus stuff that's fun to read but doesn't count to the understanding of what's going on.
    That's definitely a good point, and it's why when people suggest that a reboot could have happened in an old continuity, it's overlooking the whole idea. Comics are so insular and cross weaved that it's often hard for long time readers to understand the importance of distinction and separation between stories. The idea in 1986 for example was that readers wouldn't be burdened with having to pick up some older stuff to appreciate what they had at the time.
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  12. #12
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Im with Superlad.

    You're not going to get an exact, cut-and-paste copy where every single thing happened exactly the same way but you can squeeze it all in on a "spiritual" level if not a "letter of the law" one.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vakanai View Post
    I'd rather it not. I don't like it for Batman, don't want it for Superman. For those of us who haven't been reading comics for decades, it's just confusing. Everything ever being in continuity is just not new reader friendly. Keep a small, compact current continuity, and let the old stuff just be bonus stuff that's fun to read but doesn't count to the understanding of what's going on.
    What is the difference to a new reader between an "untold tale" and a story they never read?

    If I wrote a Superman story that had him battling "Villain X" who claims he has fought Superman before, does it make any difference if this is actually the 1st appearance of that guy or if I dug him out of some obscure 1950's story? If the story isn't set up as amystery where the resolution hangs on something in the 1950's story,

  14. #14
    Incredible Member Slim Shady's Avatar
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    If you break down time the way Grant did when he was thinking everything up, a real year equals such and such in comic years and decades and stuff, it can be done with just about any character. I agree that some characters would be harder to do because of big time continuity changes/origin changes, stuff like that. And like someone said, it's not like a cut and paste job put in a straight line, just a way to say, yeah that happened one time.

  15. #15

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    I took a crack at a Superman of All Eras version of his history in the view of Morrison's Everything Happened Batman.

    I think it works pretty well, because timey-whimey shenanigans have been a part of his history for decades.

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1...it?usp=sharing

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