Friday, July 1, 2016

Weird Comics History - DC Retroactive

Right now, you might be thinking, "Weird Comics History?  Where are Reggie and Chris?!?"  Well, it couldn't be that I kidnapped them and locked them in a closet....right?  Right!  Nope, I just wanted to write this article and had no idea what else to call it.  Just remember, the following article contains information, opinion and lame attempts at humor that represent my own and not those of Reggie and Chris.  I will not be held responsible for any inaccuracies, misspellings, misquotes and/or jokes that fall flat without even a smile.  You have been warned and now you're ready to learn all about the "Event" that fell between Flashpoint and the New 52...DC Retroactive.

The DC Retroactive Event happened in the window between the end of Flashpoint and the start of the New 52 during July and August of 2011.  It was a series of one-shots featuring Batman, Superman, Green Lantern, Flash and the Justice League grouped into three decades...The 70's, 80's and 90's. To further the nostalgia factor, DC brought back popular creative teams for each of the issues and also included a reprint of a story from that time period.

Editor, Ben Abernathy,  had this to say about the Event:

 "It's the creators working on the characters that so many fans grew up reading. Readers have a real fondness and love for the material. And the opportunity to revisit that era, with the creators who made it great, is a welcome change from everything else going on in the industry these days."[4] Abernathy also noted that “The mandate given was, basically, we wanted to tell a fun story that was set in the era, whether it be posed as a 'lost story', 'story they always wanted to tell' or maybe something connected to the reprint."

Why does this feel like what Convergence should have been?  Instead of giving us Telos and the rules breaking of fighting cities and continuities, I would have much rather have read one-shots with the stories and characters we knew and loved, by their most popular creative teams.  Am I alone here?  Hello???

Unfortunately, the Event was not the success that DC had hoped for.  Whether it was the $4.99 price tag of each issue or just the fact that everybody was waiting for the New 52 to start, the whole thing fell flat on it's face.  The sales ranged from 14,000 (Batman -70s) down to 9,000 (Wonder Woman - 90's) and once the New 52 hit, the whole thing seemed to get lost in time.

I only recently heard about DC Retroactive and went to my resident comic book genius, Reggie, to see what he thought about it and he didn't even remember it!  It really just seemed to fly in under the radar and then limp away into obscurity.

I will be reviewing each issue of the Event in the order they were released, starting with Batman - The 70s and ending with Wonder Woman - The '90s.  I'm not sure how long it will take, but I will do my best to shed a little light on something that I think sounds really cool.  See you then!

Here are the Covers to tide you over until then:

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