Star City blew up real good. Again.
Yeah, much like the first World Trade Center bombing (but being fictional, not nearly as tragic), there isn’t a lot of talk about the Star City’s previous brushes with destruction. I didn’t know about it, but money was the original reason I haven’t been collecting DC titles pre-Eventitis. (Well, let’s be honest. Eventitis began a lot sooner than Infinite Crisis. That was just the first sign of it going terminal. Literally.)
However, it’s not even close to the first time a fictional DC city has been pulverized. It’s just the latest.
No, while Marvel Comics had to blow up Stamford, CT during their Civil War event (and being in Connecticut meant I was blessed with hearing about it all over the place) (and by blessed I mean cursed), DC is lucky enough to have plenty of fictional cities to choose from. By not setting half their universe in New York, the DC universe had plenty of analogs to choose from without worrying about getting the geography right. Marvel went for realism. (*snicker*) So what other geographic creations got destroyed in the DC Universe prior to Cry For Justice?
- Coast City: I think Coast City was the first one to go down, and oddly not in the pages of Green Lantern, which is the comic that mostly took place there, being Hal Jordan’s city. Instead, Hank Henshaw, then masquerading as the “Cyborg Superman”, used Mongul to destroy the city during the “Reign of the Supermen“. Their plan was to use the new “Engine City” to turn Earth into a new “Warworld”. (Also, Hank’s ex-wife used to live there. Yeah.) Still, it caused Hal to go insane and take on the identity of Parallax. At least until a writer and editor who worships at the idol to Hal came along. There is nothing about this that wasn’t stupid. If it wasn’t for Lian and pretty much the rest of Cry For Justice, Coast City’s destruction would be dumber than Star City’s latest smackdown. Actually, it’s still up for debate.
- Metropolis: Not all that surprising that the city which houses arguably the DC Universe’s most powerful superhero (even some powers he’s forgotten) has had its share of destruction. “Fall of Metropolis“, however, took down the whole city, even the famed Daily Planet building, as Lex Luthor’s “scorched earth” policy went into effect. I actually have trouble faulting this one, as I’ve read some of the stories from this arc, and they were rather interesting. It was still a rather stupid decision to keep on doing it with other DC landmarks, but at least the writers made it better than the rest of this list.
- Gotham City: Because why should Batman miss out on all the fun? In Gotham’s case, however, it was an earthquake to blame, a natural disaster that even today’s Superman wouldn’t have been able to stop. (Silver Age Superman, maybe.) This lead to the “No Man’s Land” arc, whose stories were rather hit-or-miss, and some of the ramifications are still felt now. I really can’t give this the same praise as “Fall of Metropolis”, but at least the writers found a way to work with what I’m assuming was editorially mandated nonsense.
- Themyscira (aka “Paradise Island”): Even fictional land masses have suffered. I’m old enough to just stick with “Paradise Island” (which is also easier to type :) ). It’s the home of Wonder Woman (the third member of the “Trinity” along with Superman and Batman) and the other Amazons. Just check the link. That place has been flattened more times than Star City.
I’m willing to bet that these are just the big ones. DC mandates have also led to the whole world going through the worst crap imaginable. Even the planets weren’t safe, as Oa, home of the Green Lanterns, was also destroyed, only this time by Kyle Rayner, then the last Green Lantern, to keep Parallax from accessing its power. So some planets ended up being Krypton.
In each of these cases (well, maybe not Paradise Island), at least thousands have perished, including children Lian’s age. So why should she have gotten a “pass”? Because she’s an important character to many comic fans, and didn’t need to die this way just to make Ollie and Roy all angst-ridden and “kewler”? Or how about this? Why not ask why Star City had to be destroyed in the first place? Or Coast City? or Themys…Paradise Island? Or Gotham? Or Metropolis? It was all for the same reason? Cheap plot devise for “shock value”, because all the current writers and editors (mostly editors, but they hunt for like-minded writers like Johns or Loeb) know how to do are big, epic storylines that mean huge amounts of death and destruction.
It’s just kind of sad. I’ll stick to Johnny DC, Marvel Adventures, and Boom Kids. You know, where superhero stories are action packed, and fun, and usually with a lot more heart and caring about the heroes their writing. Heck, Bongo’s superhero stories have more depth, and Radioactive Man is a PARODY!
And thus concludes my 3-part rant on why the main DC Universe has become dead to me. It’s not easy for me, but if they don’t care anymore, why the slag should I?