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  1. #1
    Incredible Member Primal Slayer's Avatar
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    Default Aging in the DC Universe

    I know that time tends to move very slowly in comics but what do you think about DC allowing some of their characters to age while leaving others in a perpetual state of stasis?

    We have characters like Jon whose been around a very short time and he went from a baby to a kid to now what? a young adult? while we have Billy, Raven and Gar who have been forced to stay teenagers for majority of their existence.

    Should DC embrace allowing their characters to age, with their love for reboots it seems like it'd be simple enough to reach a point where you reset and start fresh again with everyone.

  2. #2
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    I would love for DC to have a consistent timeline and proper aging, but my debates on this forum tell me that I'm in a minority.

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    Incredible Member Tugger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PCN24454 View Post
    I would love for DC to have a consistent timeline and proper aging, but my debates on this forum tell me that I'm in a minority.
    100% agree with you.

    Was only thinking about this the other day.

    I think the fact that characters don't age is one of the reasons I've lost interest in the teams and characters I used to love as I myself have gotten older.

  4. #4
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    Well this goes into DC problem with legacy characters again

    Their problem with Bruce being 40

    I am happy that Diana has ascended to godhood but I cannot get the logic behind her predecessor leaving an island she is not allowed to leave to become WonderWoman rather then one of her many protege's

  5. #5
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    Aging is a tricky thing. Nailing down an exact age for a character is probably the worst thing you can do. When answering the age question, the best answer would probably be giving an age range.

    To go with the Jon example, he was said to be 10, but it would've been a lot easier to just say he was a kid. Same thing for Damian. DC went out of its way to say Bruce missed Damian's 13th birthday instead of simply saying he missed his birthday. For how much I love the Super Sons, I had a lot of trouble wrapping my head around a 10 year old and a 13 year old hanging out. Again, it would've been easier to just say Jon and Damian are close in age, but between the two of them, Damian is the older one. When they started going to same school, Jon would have still been in elementary school and Damian would've been in middle school.

    Speaking of school, I think Tim Drake's solo book did it pretty satisfactorily. Over the course of its 20 year publication, Tim went through all 4 years of high school, albeit at varying intervals, before he ultimately dropped out. DC really messed up by stating Tim's age as 16 multiple times since the n52 because when Tim said he was thinking about going to college at the start of Rebirth, I was like "Finally, someone's picking up where they left off," but nope, he's still 16 and they're sticking with it despite how contradictory that is with Damian's stated age being 10 when he first met Tim, who was 17 at the time, and now he's 14 for some reason and Tim is somehow younger. Like, way to shoot yourself in the foot, DC, when you were better off just being vague.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by garazza View Post
    Aging is a tricky thing. Nailing down an exact age for a character is probably the worst thing you can do. When answering the age question, the best answer would probably be giving an age range.

    To go with the Jon example, he was said to be 10, but it would've been a lot easier to just say he was a kid. Same thing for Damian. DC went out of its way to say Bruce missed Damian's 13th birthday instead of simply saying he missed his birthday. For how much I love the Super Sons, I had a lot of trouble wrapping my head around a 10 year old and a 13 year old hanging out. Again, it would've been easier to just say Jon and Damian are close in age, but between the two of them, Damian is the older one. When they started going to same school, Jon would have still been in elementary school and Damian would've been in middle school.

    Speaking of school, I think Tim Drake's solo book did it pretty satisfactorily. Over the course of its 20 year publication, Tim went through all 4 years of high school, albeit at varying intervals, before he ultimately dropped out. DC really messed up by stating Tim's age as 16 multiple times since the n52 because when Tim said he was thinking about going to college at the start of Rebirth, I was like "Finally, someone's picking up where they left off," but nope, he's still 16 and they're sticking with it despite how contradictory that is with Damian's stated age being 10 when he first met Tim, who was 17 at the time, and now he's 14 for some reason and Tim is somehow younger. Like, way to shoot yourself in the foot, DC, when you were better off just being vague.
    lol no one knows what to do or where to put tim,
    so now eventually Damian will outage him and time become a contradiction no one wants to deal with and vanishes

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rac7d* View Post
    Well this goes into DC problem with legacy characters again

    Their problem with Bruce being 40s
    I really like how wrestling is becoming popular again because there are wrestlers in their 40s that are basically doing what Batman does and they're still great. Some are doing their best work at that age. Dustin Rhodes is in his 50s and he's one of the best wrestlers in AEW. The men at DC really have to get over their mid-life crises.
    Last edited by garazza; 05-01-2021 at 10:15 PM.

  8. #8
    Extraordinary Member Robotman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tugger View Post
    100% agree with you.

    Was only thinking about this the other day.

    I think the fact that characters don't age is one of the reasons I've lost interest in the teams and characters I used to love as I myself have gotten older.
    DC is a business with IPs worth potentially billions of dollars. Having a character like Bruce Wayne age in real time and eventually retire would be incredibly short sighted.

    We can’t expect our favorite heroes to age along with us as the current crop of comic book fans are just a tiny drop in the overall bucket. DC/WB is probably planning ways to generate interest from mainstream audiences and the next generation of fans.

  9. #9

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    So long as they don't bring back Hal Jordan's grey sideburns it's all good.

    DC goes through the process of rebooting it's timeline every 10 years or so anyways, so anyone who grows too old becomes young again.

  10. #10
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Primal Slayer View Post
    I know that time tends to move very slowly in comics but what do you think about DC allowing some of their characters to age while leaving others in a perpetual state of stasis?

    We have characters like Jon whose been around a very short time and he went from a baby to a kid to now what? a young adult? while we have Billy, Raven and Gar who have been forced to stay teenagers for majority of their existence.

    Should DC embrace allowing their characters to age, with their love for reboots it seems like it'd be simple enough to reach a point where you reset and start fresh again with everyone.
    I'm against it. In such a shared universe, once some people start aging fans always ask well, why isn't So-and-so and Such-and-such aging too? Specifically the fans who want to see those characters aged out and replaced by legacy characters. And frankly, DC isn't made for that. Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman aren't supposed to be replaced permanently with legacy characters, only temporarily as a stunt. If you want to see characters grow old, retire, die, aand the next generation take over, then frankly maybe DC and Marvel aren't for you any longer.

  11. #11
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    Its always a interested topic.
    Personally i have over the recent years been a bit less hard NO on it.

    Because there are some good things that came from moving forward.
    But in general im still in the NO camp.

    Look at Jon Kent, aging up has hurt the character...at least in my opinion.
    Now the teen Jon is pretty generic boring, has little character and is not very interesting.
    When i look back before Bendis messed Jon up, how much heart and soul this young boy had...how enjoyable the character was.

    I dont have a problem when its Elseworld stuff like Batman Beyond or so, but in general i dont like the idea.
    Maybe because if you move forward it could mean that somewhere is the finish line, some day their stories could come to an end...and i just dont like this idea when it comes to Comics.
    Which is strange since im fine with it in mangas, books etc...but somehow i want to read about a Bruce Wayne in his prime when im an Old man.XD

    Also a big part of this is that im a huge fan of the idea that Generations of Writers take those characters and tell stories with them, not endings.
    Of course in cases like Mr Freeze i want him to one day find a cure for Nora and both of them getting a happy ending, but there are so many stories you can tell with the character, so many directions and things to explore.

  12. #12
    Leftbrownie Alpha's Avatar
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    The problem with Jon Kent wasn't that he aged, it's that he aged so soon after he was created, and in a manner that made it impossible to explore his adolescence, since he literally didn't have one.

    From what I understand the original idea for 5G was really good. Let characters age and die, but allow writers to go back in time for stories of characters in their prime. You can tell stories about Batman in his 40s until the end of time, while also allowing other writers to move forward in time with his gradual aging.

  13. #13
    Astonishing Member John Venus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PCN24454 View Post
    I would love for DC to have a consistent timeline and proper aging, but my debates on this forum tell me that I'm in a minority.
    You're not alone.

    Quote Originally Posted by Robotman View Post
    DC is a business with IPs worth potentially billions of dollars. Having a character like Bruce Wayne age in real time and eventually retire would be incredibly short sighted.

    We can’t expect our favorite heroes to age along with us as the current crop of comic book fans are just a tiny drop in the overall bucket. DC/WB is probably planning ways to generate interest from mainstream audiences and the next generation of fans.
    Uhhh, DC had Earth-Two and I don't mean the Nu52 version, I mean the Pre-Crisis versions where all the heroes got old and had kids who grew up to become heroes themselves while the 'main' heroes stayed young in their own universe.

    A shame they got rid of it because they need it now more than ever.

  14. #14
    DC Comics Forum Mod The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garazza View Post
    I really like how wrestling is becoming popular again because there are wrestlers in their 40s that are basically doing what Batman does and they're still great. Some are doing their best work at that age. Dustin Rhodes is in his 50s and he's one of the best wrestlers in AEW. The men at DC really have to get over their mid-life crises.
    As someone in his fifties, while I'm in pretty good shape and stay physically active, I'm not exactly the way I was when I was in my twenties and thirties. That's without having a fight since I was in elementary school, wither. There is no way a Batman in his forties can be at his peak effectiveness, which is why DC is very hesitant to move him into middle age.
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  15. #15
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpha View Post
    From what I understand the original idea for 5G was really good. Let characters age and die, but allow writers to go back in time for stories of characters in their prime. You can tell stories about Batman in his 40s until the end of time, while also allowing other writers to move forward in time with his gradual aging.
    I disagree - it wasn't really a good idea at all. The whole let characters age and die and tell stories in the past is something better suited for a spin off line, as opposed to the mainline itself. The explorations of aging, retiring, death, replacement and legacy are best suited for the more else-worldy sort of thing, a secondary line, while the mainline sticks with the traditional characters in their prime and pushing their stories with no ending in sight, since ultimately they're the characters that matter. Superman is Clark Kent, Batman is Bruce Wayne, Wonder Woman is Diana, and so on. They're icons, myths, legends. And if you push them in the main as aging and dying you risk harming the usability of those characters. Take the JSA - the older, original Flash and Green Lantern aren't the ones people care for, because they're the old guys, they're out of touch, their stories of them in their prime take place in the past. They're stuck there in the past largely irrelevant. The characters that are going to remain important can't get stuck and trapped in some prior point in history. They need to have their stories take place in the here and now, in the present. The only reason that Superman, Batman, or Wonder Woman still matter 80+ years after they were created is because they've always been modern characters. You set them "in the past" you take away their modernity, their relevancy. In effect, you are saying they're unimportant, they're the past, and DC has to make bets on people connecting with the new characters who come to replace them.

    That's just not how DC should be.

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