By Todd Allen
Over at Newsarama, James Robinson is finally talking — sort of — about Earth 2. But more dramatically, the cover for the second issue of Earth 2, featuring the redesigned Jay Garrick Flash is revealed.
I’ll be honest. I’m not sure I’d have recognized that as The Flash. Certainly not at first glance. The lightning bolt might have eventually clued me in… after the seams on the uniform informed me it was another DCU redesign. Yes, those seams are what hold the costume theme together (pun intended).
By far, the funniest moment of that Newsarama piece is Vaneta Rogers’ valiant attempt to get the naming conventions on the various Earths straight:
DC and its writers have a tough time figuring out what to call the main DCU Earth. Robinson originally used terms like “Earth One” and “Earth Prime,” but Newsarama inquired with DC editorial and was told that Robinson should have used “main DCU Earth.” This is the second time a DC writer accidentally used the wrong name for the main DCU Earth in an interview with Newsarama.
“Main DCU Earth?”
Guys. Just admit it. You didn’t stop to think about naming conventions or remember you had a series of graphic novels called “Earth One,” before you titled this book “Earth 2.” All you’re doing with this “main DCU Earth” malarkey is highlighting the problem.
(Why am I half expecting to be told the graphic novels are “Earth One” and the comics are “Earth 1?”)
So what does Robinson have to say about Earth 2? Precious little. On the other hand, we don’t have his comments followed up by the deadpan comedy of editor Pat McCallum getting all hot and bothered that these heroes are ready to kill. What is revealed?
Supergirl/Power Girl and Robin/Huntress will be in the first issue, but only the first issue.
Lois Lane is already dead when the first issue starts.
The Amazons are already dead when the first issue starts.
Alan Scott (Green Lantern), Jay Garrick (Flash) and Al Pratt (Atom) will be putting on costumes for the first time as the series begins and plays out.
As the the parademons on the revealed alternate cover to #1, Robinson denies Darkseid is involved:
No. It’s related to Apokolips. And that’s all I can say. It’s a very subtle but very important difference.
In terms of how long the heroes have been around on Earth 2, the evasive answer is:
I don’t know. If you think about her age in the Robin sketch and her age now, I don’t know if it’s accurate to say that they’ve been around longer, but they’ve been around for five years.
If you compare her age now as the Huntress to the age she is as Robin in that illustration, it’s safe to say there’s a five-year jumping-on point like [the main DCU Earth], but it doesn’t necessarily imply to me that they’ve been around longer than that.
That’s about it for takeaways. It is made to sound like there’s no history of heroes going back to World War II. The only legacy hero(ine) is Robin/Huntress and she’s shipped off to Worlds’ Finest after an issue. Flash/Green Lantern/Atom haven’t started their careers yet.
This is definitely the most information released about the book thus far. It mostly settles the question of whether this is the Earth 2 and Justice Society that was anticipated (it’s not and DC probably would’ve been better served to just come out and say so). What’s it going to be about? Beats me.
Unfortunately, for everything that I don’t say, there are a million theories and concepts, and people get angry because they don’t know what’s going on. This is a very tricky book to promote.
People are asked to buy a book without being told clearly what it’s about, who’s in it (this is the closest the cast has been sketched out, thus far), who the villain is (Apokolips-related?), what the plot is (something bad on a grand scale happens?), there might be some bait and switch with expectations and they’re annoyed at the lack of information? No. I can’t believe that would ever happen.
The PR effort for Earth 2 is comedy gold and nobody still has much of an idea what the actual comic is going to be like.
Todd Allen wears a lot of hats. At various times he’s been (alphabetically), a bouncer, college professor, humor columnist, Internet producer and an NBA/WNBA Beat Writer, among other things. He’s the author of Economics of Digital Comics. You should probably read it.