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  1. #1
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    Default Doomsday Clock 10: Superman and Dr. Manhattan

    This issue had a lot going on! I think the bigger messages of the series are starting to shine through, and here I talk about the big players of the series Superman and Dr. Manhattan and how their coming showdown is spoken to by the events in this issue involving Carver Colman and his onscreen role, Nathaniel Dusk.

    I'll post soon with additional thoughts about the rapid and dense material in the issue that speaks to the other major characters in the DCU, particularly the Justice Society.

    http://rikdad.blogspot.com/2019/06/d...an-and-dr.html

  2. #2
    Mighty Member failo.legendkiller's Avatar
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    Always a great read, thanks.

  3. #3
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    Fascinating read!

    Haven't really been following Doomsday Clock myself, but have been following the developments from the last issue involving the Metaverse quiet keenly.

    Really looking forward to your analysis of Batman and how he fits into the Metaverse. The one thing I was thinking when reading about how Manhattan tampered with Batman is "Wait a minute...doesn't Batman's history keep getting changed and moved forward every time as well?" It does make you wonder why Superman's history gets changed a lot, while Batman tends to usually survive with a few cosmetic changes.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bat39 View Post
    Fascinating read!

    Haven't really been following Doomsday Clock myself, but have been following the developments from the last issue involving the Metaverse quiet keenly.

    Really looking forward to your analysis of Batman and how he fits into the Metaverse. The one thing I was thinking when reading about how Manhattan tampered with Batman is "Wait a minute...doesn't Batman's history keep getting changed and moved forward every time as well?" It does make you wonder why Superman's history gets changed a lot, while Batman tends to usually survive with a few cosmetic changes.
    Batman, Wonder Woman (whose use and absence in this story is conspicuous as well), and Aquaman. Specifically.

    I've always found it fascinating - Batman's continuity, though chopped, does remain incredibly consistent, and was even persistent and notably thus when the New 52 happened and everything got rebooted but the Batman run effectively continued virtually identical to what was going on already ... just in a timeline that made zero sense. (Tangentially, because its relevance isn't really being showcased in any way in Doomsday Clock, the same is true of Dick Grayson.)

    This contrasts insanely to Aquaman - who has existed parallel to Batman for almost the whole time as a Golden Age Justice Society guy who quietly carried over into the Silver Age and only then started getting continuity tweaks. While Flash and Green Lantern and Atom got total revamps for the Silver Age, Aquaman just sort of got fleshed out a little and brought up to date with Silver Age concepts like the girl, the sidekick, and the secret origin. Unlike Batman, whose "spot" on the Justice League was never really mentioned again except in Earth-2 stories ... Aquaman was given an ersatz GA version in the form of Neptune Perkins, the inferior knock-off. Contrast that with Hawkman. Hawkman fits into a similar role as Aquaman as well, except even though his Silver Aging turned him into a space cop from Thanagar, over the years has been (insanely) reconciled so that his ersatz GA version is ... just another version of the same character.

    The Trinity's relationship with the Golden Age is fascinating stuff. And like Star Trek, I tend to believe there isn't really a "trinity", but rather a "trinity plus". (Montgomery Scott is obviously the "fourth musketeer" in Star Trek, and I believe you can probably view Dick Grayson, Aquaman, and maybe Hawkman in that sort of position in the DCU as well. But in this story, Dick, Arthur, and Carter are all just part of the big superhero ensemble, and aren't separated back on Earth like the Trinity are. But it's probably noteworthy that they're there, in the superhero armada ... and paired with their respective Silver Age female counterparts (Batgirl, Mera and Hawkgirl) and Silver Age Barry and Hal, too.

    Also got to point out that Captain Atom got a direct one-on-one with Manhattan in this storyline, and The Question, Blue Beetle, and Nightshade are there, too - so while downplayed in their role we're also seeing "THAT" universe interact. As well as the Shazam Family. Two more universes, now subservient to the main metaverse.
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  5. #5
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    KJ, there was an "Earth Two" Aquaman that appeared in one panel of a Bronze Age JLA comic if I recall correctly. I missed just about all Neptune Perkins appearances – thanks for the pointer!

    The role of Superman and Batman in the JSA is part of what I'll mention in my next post. The blunt truth is: The JSA features in All Star were a way to get popular characters up to a higher number of regular appearances. Superman and Batman already had three each, so they didn't "need" a fourth one. When Flash and Green Lantern got their own titles, they resigned from the JSA. Hourman was apparently demoted due to a perception of lower popularity. Eventually, Flash, Green Lantern, and Wonder Woman got extra appearances in Comics Cavalcade, which stamped them, IMO, as the 3rd, 4th, and 5th members of DC's Big Five, a quintet still distinguished by their roles in Final Crisis.

    It was interesting to see the Charlton characters sharing a spacecraft! Less surprising for the Marvels, but for the Charlton characters to be banded together made me wonder how the discussion went. "We were all part of the same pre-Crisis Earth"?

  6. #6
    Astonishing Member BatmanJones's Avatar
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    Fantastic! I've been waiting for this one. Can't wait for part 2!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by K. Jones View Post
    Batman, Wonder Woman (whose use and absence in this story is conspicuous as well), and Aquaman. Specifically.

    I've always found it fascinating - Batman's continuity, though chopped, does remain incredibly consistent, and was even persistent and notably thus when the New 52 happened and everything got rebooted but the Batman run effectively continued virtually identical to what was going on already ... just in a timeline that made zero sense. (Tangentially, because its relevance isn't really being showcased in any way in Doomsday Clock, the same is true of Dick Grayson.)

    This contrasts insanely to Aquaman - who has existed parallel to Batman for almost the whole time as a Golden Age Justice Society guy who quietly carried over into the Silver Age and only then started getting continuity tweaks. While Flash and Green Lantern and Atom got total revamps for the Silver Age, Aquaman just sort of got fleshed out a little and brought up to date with Silver Age concepts like the girl, the sidekick, and the secret origin. Unlike Batman, whose "spot" on the Justice League was never really mentioned again except in Earth-2 stories ... Aquaman was given an ersatz GA version in the form of Neptune Perkins, the inferior knock-off. Contrast that with Hawkman. Hawkman fits into a similar role as Aquaman as well, except even though his Silver Aging turned him into a space cop from Thanagar, over the years has been (insanely) reconciled so that his ersatz GA version is ... just another version of the same character.

    The Trinity's relationship with the Golden Age is fascinating stuff. And like Star Trek, I tend to believe there isn't really a "trinity", but rather a "trinity plus". (Montgomery Scott is obviously the "fourth musketeer" in Star Trek, and I believe you can probably view Dick Grayson, Aquaman, and maybe Hawkman in that sort of position in the DCU as well. But in this story, Dick, Arthur, and Carter are all just part of the big superhero ensemble, and aren't separated back on Earth like the Trinity are. But it's probably noteworthy that they're there, in the superhero armada ... and paired with their respective Silver Age female counterparts (Batgirl, Mera and Hawkgirl) and Silver Age Barry and Hal, too.

    Also got to point out that Captain Atom got a direct one-on-one with Manhattan in this storyline, and The Question, Blue Beetle, and Nightshade are there, too - so while downplayed in their role we're also seeing "THAT" universe interact. As well as the Shazam Family. Two more universes, now subservient to the main metaverse.
    Aquaman is an interesting case in that, physically, the character pretty much stayed the same. But literally everything about his history, backstory and identity changed! In that sense, you could argue that what happened to Aquaman is more comparable to what happened with Flash rather than Superman - except in this case, the Silver Age 'reboot' retained the same appearance and costume while being a totally different character.

    Golden Age Aquaman was the son of a marine biologist who used the secrets of the lost kingdom of Atlantis to give him Atlantean powers. Silver Age Aquaman is the son of an Atlantean queen and a surface-dwelling lighthouse keeper who inherited his mother's powers and later went on to become the king of the (still very much thriving) kingdom of Atlantis. They are arguably as different characters as Barry Allen and Jay Garrick - the difference being they look exactly the same.

    Hawkman is a similar case. There was no confusion about Hawkman and Hawkgirl until COIE. But after COIE, DC has to deal with the doppelgangers. Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and their supporting casts simply had the Earth 2 versions erased from existence. In the case of Flash, Green Lantern, Atom etc. the Earth 1 and Earth 2 versions were pretty distinct characters so they were both incorporated into the new continuity. Hawkman, Aquaman (and possibly Green Arrow as well) were the ones who presented a challenge. Aquaman and Green Arrow went the way of Superman and Batman in having the Earth 2 versions erased (they had never been that significant in contemporary comics anyway). But in the case of Hawkman, DC wanted both versions - so they kept them. Which could have worked with some mild tweaks (like some explanation for why the Thanagarian Hawks adopted the civilian identities of the Golden Age Hawks). But then DC decided to reboot the Thanagarian Hawks...and the continuity nightmare began.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rikdad View Post
    It was interesting to see the Charlton characters sharing a spacecraft! Less surprising for the Marvels, but for the Charlton characters to be banded together made me wonder how the discussion went. "We were all part of the same pre-Crisis Earth"?
    I have to imagine they all found themselves maneuvered into a gathering at Peter Cannon's secret Antarctic retreat, so top secret that even DC Editorial doesn't know he has it there. Cannon rode back into the DCU by wearing the interstellar championship wrestling belt of Mister Muscles and the swimtrunks of Nature Boy, which powered by The Red and The Green can bypass The Bleed. The Question, obsessed with the question of "Where Is Captain Paragon?" was going to expose the fact that The Peacemaker likely assassinated him with a bullet fashioned by the Son of Vulcan to erase him from existence as revenge for the death of the Yellowjacket which precipitated the economic and criminal downturn of Hub City that was why his father turned to the Nazis. Tot Rodor suggests Question leave it to his protege, Montoya, but he doesn't know her new number. Blue Beetle pretended not to know who Dan Garrett was, while Captain Atom did the opposite of staring off into space wondering about how the universe works, instead hanging out with Nightshade in her "garden" in the shadow dimension and being glad he hasn't exploded and time-traveled anytime recently, until they were rudely interrupted in their strangely suspenseful space adventure ghostly tale for lovers only by the Judomaster's astral projection taught to him by E-Man, telling them they're needed on Mars, or else it's going to be doomsday, plus one.
    Last edited by K. Jones; 06-10-2019 at 11:09 PM.
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  9. #9
    Extraordinary Member Robotman's Avatar
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    Awesome as always! Your breakdowns have really increased my enjoyment of a number of books.

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