Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Day DC Geography Changed Forever!!!

If you know me at all, you know I've wasted a ridiculous portion of my adult life trying figure the perplexities of DC Geography, specifically the location of their "extra" cities, and most specifically the locations of Gotham City and Metropolis.

I've studied highway signs, and more highway signs, and pursued many a clue, to no real success.

They're both cities with seaports, they're relatively close...and that's about it. Most people go for Connecticut and New Jersey, but the frighteningly inconsistent informational crumbs DC has tossed out leave most of the northeastern seaboard--anywhere from Massachusetts to Maryland being a possibility.

But sometimes, a piece of information gets unveiled, which, well, changes your entire worldview.

In this week's Batman #21 (don't worry, spoiler free), there's a hockey game playing in the early pages...and the announcers tell us this:

Wait Wait Wait WAIT!!!!!!!!

Both Gotham City and Metropolis are in the WESTERN Conference?!? What the...

Look, I'll be the first to admit that sports conference/division alignments can be a bit less than geographically accurate. Sometimes there's tradition; sometimes there's difficulty to getting teams to agree to switching divisions when one team relocates; sometimes there seems to be no reason. The Dallas Cowboys are in the NFC East because no one wanted to break up their rivalries. For two decades Atlanta and Cincinnati played in baseball's NL West, while Chicago and St. Louis played in the NL East. Go figure.

Still, it be exceptionally rare for one team physically on the east coast to be assigned to play in the Western Conference. Two would be pretty much insane. If for no other reason than the travel burdens on those teams--most of their games would be in their own conference, so their travel time/expenses would be astronomical compared to other teams in the own conference! I'm not saying it couldn't happen...just that (on our Earth, at least), it probably wouldn't happen.

So if Gotham and Metropolis are both seaports AND play in the Western Conference, DC telling us that they're on the West Coast?!?

I know I jokingly toyed with clues in The Dark Knight Rises that sorta could have been taken to imply that Gotham City was in California, but seriously?

For what it's worth, the snow we've seen in both cities probably puts southern California right out of the picture. Northern California? Oregon? Washington?

The bigger question is--are we meant to take this seriously? Have Metropolis and Gotham always been on the west coast? Or just since nu52, or Rebirth, and this is a clue that someone is mucking with reality?

Or maybe it's just a writing/lettering/editing snafu....


SallyP said...

But...I thought Gotham City was actually Chicago? seriously though, I swear there was talk at one point of having UConn... which is of course in Connecticut, in a western division.

Wayne Allen Sallee said...

Probably a goof. Or Nite Owl, I mean, Dr. Oz. (I've been calling this whole Rebirth thing as Nite Owl holding Ozymandias prisoner until Dr. Manhattan finishes messing up the DCU even more. And when we do see them, they'll all have aged.

Sally: the DC Atlas from the 90s put Gotham as Cape May NJ and Metropolis in Delaware, which did put them across the bay from each other.And close to a lot of other big cities. I always assumed Midway City was Chicago, but the Atlas put that as next to Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. Goofy writers.

Anonymous said...

Gotham is obviously New York because, well, Gotham.

However, Metropolis is also New York. Somebody said once said Metropolis is New York by day, and Gotham is New York by night.

Midway City is either Detroit (when grim n' gritty antihero comics are taking place there) or Chicago (when the Hawks are there, working at a Field Museum expy).

Hub City is East St. Louis, which tells you all you need to know about both.