I will say my last few pieces and try and wrap up this thread, its about time we moved on to a different subject matter methinks : )
Do superheroes work?
Thats the question isn't it.
Obviously, Watchmen dealt with that subject better than most and 20 years on is just as relevant today as it was then. But just because "Romeo and Juliet" is arguably the greatest Romantic Comedy doesn't mean other people shouldn't give it a go. After all, it has often been therorised that there are only 7 unique story concepts.
At the end of ID Crisis, we are left feeling that Superheroes are flawed, but you have to look at ID Crisis as part of the journey, not an insular 7 issue series with no ties to the DCU. What Brad has done is created a shit storm of conflict, and left the resolution hanging.
The conflict mainly comes from the League within the League making a mistake, this is good as it humanises the characters creating recognition in readers (people tend to make mistakes, they don't tend to fire painted arrows or talk backwards). Out of the rather shiny history of the DCU, we have a murky secret arise, a secret which threatens every thing that the heroes have worked for and urinates on the legend surrounding the Barry Allen Flash. The characters are going to have to deal with this in the coming 2 years and it looks like DC has a plan, tying together the last three years of stories. I know I will be there to see it coming together.
Time was, Marvel led the way, with more realistic (occassionally grim and gritty, or at least heavily shoulder-padded) characters who had troubles in their life. Indeed, this was what seperated the Spider-mans and Fantastic Fours from other superheroes of the '60's. Coupling that together with a shared setting (NY, NY) created a cohesive Universe that the characters existed in, this is what put Marvel on top of their game for the last 40 years.
But in a time when Marvel is foresaking continuity for creative freedom and the Marvel Universe drifts apart faster than a Yoko infesting Beatles, DC has put the Unvierse back into comics, and in the center of that universe, there are characters.
(Why do I sense this is going to open a string about creative freedom???)
So, in conclusion: The fat lady has not sung, or talked backwards. The events of ID Crisis have not reached there climax, let us see where DC take us over the next few years and then open the debate again.
All right, forget the "next few years" thing, we will surely have something to say after DC Countdown, shipping March 31st and only $1!
Absolutely, I get what you're saying, and you (and Pete) are absolutely right - this shouldn't be viewed as just an isolated story. If anything, this series (and its followers; Countdown, OMAC Project, Society of Super-Villains etc) *is* the DCU at the moment, considering how it's touched upon most of its core elements.
We'll see how it pans out (Look - Robin is crying now that this discussion's over...)
I say Planetary, Ultimate FF, Ultimate Nightmare, Ocean and all the other Ellis projects going on ATM next... :)