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Showing posts 0-5 of 249 matching: dan jurgens

Friday, March 5, 2021

Serious Question

I said at the start of the week that I wanted to talk about Generations Forged, so if you haven't read that yet (or for that matter Generations Shattered or Dark Knights: Death Metal ), beware that spoilers follow.

...

...

You've been warned.

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You know from cover (and timing) of Generations Shattered, this story takes place in the DC Omniverse created in the wake of Dark Nights: Death Metal.

© DC Comics
Dark Nights: Death Metal #7, January 2021

As if the Omniverse wasn't a big enough concept to take in, it only gets bigger. ("Infinity is just so big that, by comparison, bigness itself looks really titchy," explainsthe Hitchhikers Guide the Galaxy.)

At the end of Generations Forged, as Waverider returns the Batman of 1939 (abducted by Kamandi in Detective Comics #1000) to his native time, he introduces us to another concept:

© DC Comics
Generations Forged #1, February 2021

Waverider goes on to imply that the Batman of 1939 will continue fighting into the modern day, that the Batmen of all publishing ages (Golden, Silver, Modern) are the same character (who may or may not have memories of all of his adventures.)

While the Omniverse just increases the size of the bucket for potential story settings, the Linearverse is a radical revision to understanding DC Comics' publishing history.

For GamesRadar.com, Michael Doran has already written several articles on the implications of this revelation, each quoting Generations Forged architect Dan Jurgens on his intent with this new Linearverse.

"It's fair to say that what we built here, the Linearverse, is its own universe that can fit into the larger context of DC's Omniverse," explains Jurgens. "It's a place where some unique and individual stories can be told."

Jurgens himself admits that this is an imperfect solution to an artificial problem. Comic book fans have always struggled with reconciling how Dick Grayson could be a boy in 1940 and still a young man in 2020 or how both Superboy and Superman could each have co-existing adventures for most of 80 years. These are only "problems" when trying to reconcile the lives of fictional characters with the passage of nonfictional time, but they are problems that fans have nonetheless tried to resolve for as long as we've been reading and relating to new monthly comics.

I don't mean to suggest that I think the Linearverse is necessarily any worse than any other attempt at reconciling the impossible. From my restricted point of view as the chronicler of the adventures of multiversal time-traveler Booster Gold, I've always attempted to to harmonize the many incarnations of Booster Gold onto a single entity, albeit an occasionally fractured and splintered one. That's no so different from what happens in the Linearverse.

So, to finally get to the serious question I referenced in my post title, what I want to know is whether the adventure told in Generations Shattered and Generations Forged happened to a Booster Gold in a previously existing continuity or not? The rules as explained for the new Linearverse would seem to suggest it happened to all known Boosters while at the same time happening to none of them, or maybe only those that exist inside a Linearverse that reflects the sum of all other universes.

For reasons I can't quite express, I don't find any of these options entirely satisfying (thought that may not be surprising coming from someone who obsessively tracks super hero minutia for a hobby).

Perhaps there is no definitive answer to my question, at least not yet. As GameRadar reports,

"There are all sorts of stories and adventures worth exploring in the Linearverse," Jurgens concludes. "If readers like what they've seen, react well to the concept, and ask for more, it might just happen."

Like so much else, maybe the answer to my question will only become clearer with time.

Comments (0) | Add a Comment | Tags: batman dan jurgens gamesradar.com generations linearverse michael doran multiverse omniverse superman

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

New Release: Infinite Frontier

The future is here!

© DC Comics

If Booster Gold's appearance on Dan Jurgens' cover of this week's Infinite Frontier #0 wasn't enough to get you to buy the issue, how about if I tell you that our hero also makes a surprise cameo appearance on the pages within?

© DC Comics
art by John Timms, Alex Sinclair

Sadly, that is the totality of Booster's participation in this issue. Still, that's an infinite amount more Booster than most of the other books on the shelves of your Local Comic Shop.

Buy this issue (for that sweet cover) and make Skeets happy.

Comments (4) | Add a Comment | Tags: dan jurgens infinite frontier new releases

Monday, February 22, 2021

Best Movie Book News Ever

Two Saturdays ago, I directed you to Russ Burlingame's newly-created Indiegogo campaign for his "Best Movie Ever: A Totally Jerkin' Book" critical history of the Josie and the Pussycats movie. At the time, I wrote

If this goes really well for Russ, I'm betting he'll finally re-release those "Gold Exchange" columns in book form. I'd really like to get my hands on that book.

Burlingame listened. He soon updated his campaign with this promise:

If the campaign reaches $5,000, I'll provide everyone who bought the book with a PDF copy of a collected edition of my "Gold Exchange" columns, which ran on ComicRelated and Blog@Newsarama from about 2006 until 2011. The Gold Exchange was a monthly interview column in which I and the creators of the comic provided a running "commentary track" on Booster Gold.

The ebook will be free, but at $5,000, those who are interested will also be able to purchase a paperback copy of The Gold Exchange, which features interviews with Dan Jurgens, Geoff Johns, Rick Remender, J.M. DeMatteis, and Keith Giffen. This collection is something I had meant to print back in 2011 and put the content together to do so, but ran out of time and resources and ultimately left it unfinished.

Well, good news, Booster boosters! He's now well past $5,000! Hooray!

It's not too late to join this party. For as little as $15, you can secure your own link-rot proof "Gold Exchange" eBook on IndieGoGo.com. Then, if you like, you'll have the opportunity to own a print copy of Booster Gold's oral history.

That's a small price to pay for a unique companion piece to place on your bookshelf beside Booster Gold: 52 Pick-Up and your other Booster Gold Volume 2 collections.

Comments (0) | Add a Comment | Tags: dan jurgens geoff johns gold exchange j.m. dematteis keith giffen rick remender russ burlingame

Friday, January 29, 2021

Lateral Men

It's been three weeks since Generations: Shattered was released, so you should have your copy by now, yes? Good. Because we're going to talk about it today. Specifically, we're going to talk about this panel:

© DC Comics
art by John Romita, Jr., Danny Miki, Hi-Fi

If you've been reading DC Comics for a long of time, you may recognize most of those people, but Booster boosters in particular should probably have a pretty good idea who the Linear Men are. This is an unusual line-up of that team. It's no coincidence that many of them directly pair up with a Multiversal heroic counterpart, a contrivance that is explained in the story as the nearly omnipotent Dominus bends reality to his will.

But even accepting that, one of those Linear Men stands out. Can you spot which one?

© DC Comics
Hint: It's this guy.

Whoever that guy is, I doubt anyone calls him "Rayak the Ravager."

Quick history lesson: The Linear Men concept was created in Adventures of Superman #476 (by Dan Jurgens) in 1991 with the introduction of The (singular) Linear Man.[1] That Linear Man died, sacrificing himself in the 30th-century to "correct" the history he'd unintentionally broken while trying to bring justice to Booster Gold. (You'll find more information on the interactions between the Linear Man and Booster Gold here.)


art by Dan Jurgens, Art Thiebert, Glenn Whitmore, Todd Klein

Shortly thereafter, in Superman #59 (by Dan Jurgens), we learn that the Linear Man was a rogue member of the mysterious Linear Men of Vanishing Point who are "dedicated to guarding the linear sanctity of the time stream." By the time of Superman #73 (by Dan Jurgens), it is well established that there are three remaining Linear Men: Matthew Ryder, Liri Lee, and Hunter.[2] (The impetuous Waverider is often an ally of the group but isn't really a member.[3])

In our group shot at the top of the post, both Liri Lee[4] and Matthew Ryder are clearly identified by name in our Generations: Shattered confrontation. Naturally, the third Linear Man should be Hunter, especially since he appears earlier in the issue beside both Liri and Ryder.

© DC Comics
art by Fernando Pasarin, Oclair Albert, Hi-Fi

So why in the big team shot is Hunter misidentified as "Rayak the Ravager"?

If I had to take a guess, I'd say that whoever wrote the label was trying to recall the name "Ryak the Rogue" from memory. Ryak is the newest Linear Man — the first not created by Dan Jurgens. Ryak makes his first appearance in The All-New Atom #7 (by Gail Simone) in 2007, and he looks nothing like Hunter. For one thing, he's green.

© DC Comics
art by Mike Norton, Andy Owens, Alex Bleyaert, Pat Brosseau

As his moniker might suggest, Ryak was a solo actor in Atom, but he made a cameo appearance beside the other Linear Men on Vanishing Point in Dark Nights: Death Metal: Rise of the New God in 2020. Look closely at that panel, and alongside Ryak you'll spot Ryder, Liri, Rip Hunter, and Waverider, but Hunter is missing, replaced by none other than the original Linear Man himself![5]

© DC Comics
art by Jesus Merino, Vincente Cifuentes, Ulises Arreola

As you can see, keeping the Linear Men straight takes as much work as the convoluted continuity they are sworn to protect. The DC Multiverse is a big place. Every once in a while, we should probably expect the writers, artists, or editors to confused a name and a face.

On the other hand, the events of both Dark Knights: Death Metal and Generations: Shattered involve realities and timelines altered by gods themselves. In which case, if Dominus wants to call Hunter "Rayak," who are we, mere mortal readers of comic books, to correct him?


1 As for the original Linear Man's real identity: it is commonly assumed to be Travis O'Connell. That name comes from the "Linear Men" entry in the Who's Who in the DC Universe Update 1993 #2 (by Roger Stern) which identifies four Linear Men by name and states that "[Travis] O'Connell eventually sacrificed his own life in the late 30th Century." Unless there were multiple Linear Mans chasing Booster Gold in the 30th century, I think we've solved that mystery. (DK apparently agrees; they identify O'Connell by name in their entry for the Linear Man in their officially-licensed The DC Comics Encyclopedia.)

2 Hunter is, as you might have guessed, Rip Hunter. But he's not the one we know. According to the story "Falling in Line" in Legends of the DC Universe 80-Page Giant #1 (by Dan Jurgens), Hunter is the evolution of the young, mischievous Rip Hunter from an alternate history that appears to closely mirror the original Rip Hunter, Time Master, whose pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths Earth-1 adventures were chronicled in a book of the same title.

3 Technically, Waverider, like Rip Hunter, is two Linear Men. See, Waverider and Matthew Ryder are the same person, separated into two timelines by the accidental death of his/their parents. In violation of the Linear Men's prime directive, Waverider himself changed the history that forced the divergence that allowed his alternate self to grow into his role as the Linear Men's Ryder. (For details, see Superman #61 by Dan Jurgens.) And while we're on the subject, I might as well mention that Matthew Ryder and Waverider first appeared in Armaggeddon 2001 #1 by Archie Goodwin... and Dan Jurgens.

4 Liri Lee is the only female member of the Linear Men. I probably don't need to tell you, but she was created by Dan Jurgens for Superman #59. She takes the name Linear Woman in Time Masters: Vanishing Point #6 (by... oh, you know). That may take place in a different reality or at a different point in Liri Lee's future chronology than the events of Generations: Shattered. The biggest problem with hanging out at Vanishing Point is that time and space don't have meaning anymore.

5 This isn't the first time O'Connell has been seen since his "death" in Adventures of Superman #478 (by Dan Jurgens), and there are many well-intentioned websites that appear to confuse O'Connell and Hunter, which is understandable. (Heck, I did it myself when I first listed my annotations for the issue, and I obviously know better.) Both O'Connell and Hunter share a 1990s affinity for shoulder pads, pointless belts, and cybernetic parts. And, of course, they are both Dan Jurgens creations. Rule of thumb: if he has black hair and a holster, it's O'Connell; white hair, Hunter.

Comments (2) | Add a Comment | Tags: characters dan jurgens fernando passin gail simone generations hunter jesus merino john romita jr linear man linear men liri lee mike norman rayak the ravager rip hunter ryak the scout waverider

Monday, January 25, 2021

Rejected

If you didn't read BleedingCool.com over the weekend, you may have missed the notification that the original art for the cover of Formerly Known as the Justice League #6 (2004), featuring Booster Gold and Blue Beetle, is up for auction today at Heritage Auctions (HA.com).

Unpublished original cover art by Kevin Maguire and Joe Rubenstein for Formerly Known as the Justice League #6; imaged by Heritage Auctions, HA.com

Now, if you're the sort with an attention to detail and a good memory, you might have noticed a few small differences between this unpublished art and the final printed cover which has Booster much more front and center. As much as I love the original piece, I do think that the published cover sells the gag better.

As you can see at the top of the art itself, the piece was drawn by Kevin Maguire, who is responsible for drawing more Booster Gold comics than any artist other than Dan Jurgens, and Joe Rubenstien, who is credited with inking more Booster Gold comics than any artist other than Norm Rapmund. Jurgens and Rapmund, of course, worked on most issues of Booster Gold Volume 2, in case you didn't know.

By the way, this is hardly the only time that Maguire's art would fail to make a final cover on a Booster Gold project. This was the originally solicited art for the cover of Booster Gold Volume 2 #37 (2010) that never made it to press:

© DC Comics

I'm rarely one to complain about Dan Jurgens and Jerry Ordway art, but in that instance, I do think the solicited art is more eye catching than what's actually on the cover. (Though, to be fair, I place most of that blame on the colorist's choice of unsavory yellow tints. Oh, well. To each his own.)

In any event, more Booster Gold art is always better than less, wouldn't you agree? (Thanks to J for making sure I saw this.)

Comments (0) | Add a Comment | Tags: art bleedingcool.com covers dan jurgens ha.com jerry ordway joe rubinstein kevin maguire norm rapmund original art


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