Saturday, December 15, 2007

Kontinuity Kop--Countdown (Again!)

The thin blue line between fiction and bad fictionSigh....

Sorry to bitch about Countdown again, but dammit, someone has to, especially when they're screwing up the Legion of Super-Heroes (again).

Now, if Geoff Johns and Mike Carlin want to insist that the Legionnaires we saw in the (terrible) Lightning Saga in the JLA/JSA crossover were really, truly "the original Legion," they can. But that don't make it so. And wouldn't you think that if they were so enamored of the "original Legion" (and who isn't?), they might actually get a fact or two right?

Yeah, you'd think so. But so far, between Countdown and the Lightning Saga, we have:
  • Karate Kid calling Luornu "Triplicate Girl." Karate Kid didn't join the Legion until AFTER Computo killed one of her "selves," and thus would never have known her as Triplicate Girl...he would have called her "Duo Damsel."

  • Karate Kid and Sensor Girl being in the Legion at the same time. Of course, Sensor Girl was an alias assumed by Princess Projectra, AFTER Karate Kid was killed in the future.
But now we get to the borderline offensive part. From Countdown #20:

Do the have bigamy on Cargg??Look, my above quibbles can be dismissed as nitpicks. Fine. But in the "original Legion," Luornu is MARRIED to Bouncing Boy!! As in, Superboy #200. As in, well, you know, MARRIED.
This is Mike Carlin defending this in a Newsarama interview:
NRAMA: Okay - the whole Una/Karate Kid little romantic thing...that was...misplaced. What purpose did that serve in your editorial eyes?

MC: Misplaced? Seemed to us it fit their particular situation— explaining why Una would volunteer to stay behind with Karate Kid in the first place... And giving two characters a conflict while apart from their girl and “sisters” back home in the future!
Sigh...not even an acknowledgement that "Una" is on the verge of committing adultery with the husband of another Legionnaire. No mention of Chuck Taine. Or that before Buncing Boy, she was crushing on someone else (shhh...Superboy!). And not even an indication that anyone involved in this tripe has ever actually, you know, read any of the original Legion, or gone back to look stuff up while writing this. Nope, we just wanted to create a dramatic "conflict." Well, if so, why the freakin' insistence that this is the one true original Legion?!? "We loved the original Legion, we want them back, but we don't want them to have the same history or relationships?!"

If there's one thing worse than "continuity porn," it's continuity porn that can't even get the continuity straight. Becuase that just leaves porn. Pathetic and insulting.

BONUS: Kontinuity Kop speculation: Previously, I was sure that "Una" was really all 3 "selves" of Triplicate Girl...being only one was just a subterfuge, and at an appropriate point in Countdown we'd have the "surprise" reveal that she really was Triplicate Girl. While else go through the silly mechanics of having only one self helping Karate Kid?

But the bigamist mooning over Karate Kid so disgusted me, I can no longer believe that it's really ANY aspect of Luornu. New theory: She's really Sensor Girl/Projectra in disguise, again for a suprise reveal...


Anonymous said...

It's pretty clear to me at this point that DC editorial is flying the seat of their pants with this whole Countdown mess. After their ham-fisted treatment and resolution of Infinite Crisis and 52, I came to the conclusion that nobody there really has an overarching vision or concept of where it is they're going. Instead of a "House of Cards", it's a "House of Hype", as each new breathless claim that it "all fits together" or "the big payoff is coming" just adds another layer of instability.

Happily, the Sinestro Corps storyline proved that at least some faction of DC Comics is still able to tell a large scale story without the wheels falling off. Carlin has been a joke of an editor for a long, long time, and it took his return to prominence with "Countdown" to remind everyone of that fact. He was the guy who, long ago, had written off the JSA as look at them: one of DC's most popular and consistently best titles. No big surprise to me that Carlin is such a stammering nincompoop in those Newsarama interviews.

snell said...

Gee, Mark, don't hold back...tell 'em how you really feel....

The most disturbing part of Infinite Crisis was that there was no point to it. Any changes in continuity and character were trivial at best, other than debasing the original Superman and Superboy-Prime. And seriously, was any of the One Year Later stuff interesting or compelling?? Can anyone even remember any of it?

But 52 proves your point best of all. It wasn't necessarily a bad comcept--show us how the world would respond to the Big Three being absent for a year. But by DiDio's own admission, the writers didn't want to tell that story, and hijacked the series for their own stories. (Uh, Dan, at what point in the process does an editor actually, you know, edit??) The terrible "World War III" mini-series shows how creatively bankrupt 52 was, not even bothering to fufill it's purpose of filling in the blanks of the missing year.

Whichs takes us to Countdown, which exists soley because 52 sold well as a weekly series. But no one bothered to make more than, oh, 10 weeks worth of stories(Paul Dini's inability to keep up a monthly schedule on Detective should have been a clue that he was not the man to come up with stuff to fill a weekly series...).

But what irritates me the most are the easily avoidable errors. I find it difficult to believe that someone couldn't be bothered to check the House Bible, or whatever DC has, to check out some of these things before doing the stories. Or even look it up on Wikipedia, for gosh sakes!

To run a series whose purpose is continuity, to botch that continuity, and then attack the fans for criticizing that...well, that's just crazy.