We’ve basically gotten ONE Flash story that’s *just a Flash story* out of each run since 2005

I feel like I’m Charlie Brown, DC is Lucy, and the promise of a Flash series that actually gets off the ground and *goes* somewhere is the football.

We’ve basically gotten ONE Flash story that’s *just a Flash story* out of each run since 2005. Everything else has either been setup, wrap-up, or a side story for an outside event.

That two-parter with Bart vs. Mota. Tom Peyer’s “Fast Money.” Maybe Geoff Johns’ “The Dastardly Death of the Rogues.”

Long-form writing only works if you follow through on it. I love reading novels, but I’d much rather read 20 short stories than 10 first chapters and 10 last chapters.

So yes, a legacy character *can* be done in a movie.

Easier, yes…but not necessary. Anyone remember a Zorro film from about 10 years back with Anthony Hopkins as retired Zorro and Antonio Banderas as new Zorro? It did well enough they made a sequel.

Other characters have legacy built into the concept, like the Phantom (maybe not the best example, because the movie tanked).

Maybe a better example: a big part of the first Pirates of the Caribbean film hinged on Will Turner following through on his father’s legacy, but Bootstrap Bill didn’t appear at all until they did the sequels.

Or, heck, Harry Potter – it’s all about this boy growing up and living up to the legacy of his parents and their generation who fought in a war. Harry’s parents are absolutely critical to his story, but they’ve been dead for 10 years when the first movie gets going.

So yes, a legacy character *can* be done in a movie. It may be *easier* to tell a story about the first guy, but it’s not *necessary.*

Barry’s been back for THREE YEARS

Barry’s been back for THREE YEARS. He’s been the focus of a Rebirth miniseries, had a major part in last year’s Big Event(tm), and had his own ongoing book, plus guest spots all over the DCU.

And here we have a gigantic, sprawling Flash-centric event (the first ever, I might add) with 5 oversized issues telling the main story, plus 16 miniseries and at least 4 one-shots telling side stories.

And DC is saying that nowhere in all of that could they find room for the guy who was The Flash for more than two decades? And you’re saying this is perfectly okay?

I don’t like to use the phrase “slap in the face” — it’s really overused IMO — but I think it applies here.

Review: Comics Toons N’ Toys

The best comic store I’ve been to in Orange County. The staff is friendly and helpful, and the selection is incredible. Some stores focus on Marvel and DC and just a smattering of other material. These guys carry everything down to the obscure indie books that you’ve never heard of. I can think of several occasions on which I found out about some obscure book from a publisher I didn’t even recognize, figured I’d have to hunt around for it, then came here first…and found it immediately.

They have a wide selection of graphic novels, manga, T-shirts, trading cards, and as the name suggests, collectible toys (mainly action figures relating to comic books, anime, and sci-fi TV and movies).

They also have the biggest collection of back issues I’ve seen outside a convention in the last decade or so, mostly from the mid-1980s onward.

On Yelp

Long Court Cases

Sometimes, lawsuits take a *long* time to get through the courts to the point where they’re dismissed or resolved. Six years from incident to dismissal doesn’t surprise me as much as I wish it did.

There’s a book called “The True Stella Awards” [stellaawards.com] by Randy Cassingham, which is full of documented court cases that waste time & money, set bad precedents, try to punish the wrong people, etc, and it’s disheartening to see how long the process can take.

On Slashdot

Compliance Rates & Hands-Free Use

Comment on Phone and Text Bans On Drivers Shown Ineffective

Just because a behavior is banned doesn’t mean people have actually stopped doing it. California’s ban has been in place for a year and a half now, and I still regularly see people driving while talking on their phones. So hand-held phone use has reduced in these areas. How much?

The other thing to consider is that at least the California law allows you to use your cell phone while driving as long as you use a hand-free system, like an earpiece or a car system that acts as a speakerphone. I seem to recall that other studies have shown that hands-free cell phone conversations are just as distracting as conversations carried out while holding the phone. (The article spends a whopping one sentence on this.)

On Slashdot

It’s about the streaming

Comment on Netflix Will Delay Renting New WB Releases

I’m sure that’s [a discount on DVDs] a big part of it…but the press release also mentioned that WB is giving them access to more of its catalog for their streaming service.

With physical DVDs, if WB refuses to sell directly to Netflix, they can always send someone to Costco, buy a bunch of DVDs, and rent them under the first sale doctrine. With streaming, they need an active contract with WB to do it (legally) at all. If WB decides not to renew that contract…well, there goes their streaming service. Or at least anything from Warner Bros.

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Bored? Try Doodling To Keep The Brain On Task

The next time you see someone doodling during a meeting, don’t criticize them for drifting off. It turns out that doodling is the mind’s way of keeping itself just busy enough to avoid checking out entirely and slipping off into a daydream, and doodlers actually remember more of that boring talk. (Judging by my college notes, this probably helped me remember a lot of otherwise-boring lectures.)

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Bossie Awards Honor Open Source Software

InfoWorld has announced the 2007 Bossie Awards for the Best of Open-Source Software. Awards were given to 36 winners across 6 categories. Honorees include (among others) SpamAssassin, ClamAV and Nessus in security, Wireshark and Azureus Vuze in networking, and ZFS for storage. Interestingly, they split the operating system winners across two distributions, with CentOS winning for server OS and Ubuntu for desktop.

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Re: Continuity questions (Annuals, specials and spin-offs)

Hmm, let’s see if I can have a go at this:

> Flash Annual #1-13

Annual 1 is tricky, because Wally’s seeing Connie, not Tina, but living in his mansion. I put it between #4 and #5, figuring that he’s met Tina, but they’re not dating yet.

Annual 2 I put between #19 and #20 — it’s clearly after the long Vandal Savage story that ends in #18, but before the Invasion!-through Porcupine Man story that starts in #20.

Annual 3 is easy: between #28 and #29. #28 wraps up the Porcupine Man story. The annual features Wally’s Justice League transporter being delivered. He uses the transporter in #29.

Annual 4 is unclear, since there’s nothing to really anchor it, but I set it around the time of #55, the War of the Gods crossover, because Armageddon 2001 and War of the Gods ran more or less concurrently.

Annual 5 is another slightly vague one, but I place it around #66, early in Waid’s run and right after the framing sequence of “Born to Run,” because it’s the last time you’ll see Chunk for a long, long time.

Annual 6 is explicitly set during “The Return of Barry Allen,” between #77 and #78

Annual 7 is out of continuity

Annual 8 is a bit vague, but I’d place it just before “Dead Heat” because Wally and Linda have worked through the worst of their post-“Terminal Velocity” relationship issues.

Annual 9 is either out of continuity or so far in the future it doesn’t matter.

Annual 10 is sometime after “Hell to Pay,” so shortly after #129.

Annual 11 is unclear, but sometime before “The Black Flash” starts in #139. I’ve put it between #134 and #135, which doesn’t *quite* fit.

Annual 12 is early in the Dark Flash saga, probably not long after #152, because no one knows who he is yet.

Annual 13 is shortly after Wally’s and Linda’s wedding and honeymoon — I’ve put it right before the start of “Wonderland,” between #163-164

> Speed Force #1
> Secret Files #1-2
> 80-Page Giant #1-2
> Flash Plus Nightwing #1

The rest of these are trickier to place, especially since they range all over. I’ll let someone else give them a try.

> Also, are there any other spinoffs or major guest appearances from around 1992-2001? Thanks!

Well, there’s Impulse, of course. There’s Flash: Iron Heights, which fits nearly into Geoff Johns’ run right after “Birth Right” and Flash: Our Worlds at War which brings Cyborg to Keystone City.

Green Lantern #66-67: “Fast Friends”
Green Lantern/The Flash: Faster Friends (2 parts, the comic book seen in season one of Lost)
Robin #62-64
Flashpoint (a 3-part Elseworlds mini)
Amalgam Comics: Speed Demon
Legionnaires Annual 3 has XS meeting Barry on a trip through time.
New Year’s Evil: The Rogues
Silver Age: The Flash
The Kingdom: Kid Flash
Wonder Woman Plus Jesse Quick

Re: To be honest i hope Bart stays

Christening Wally West and/or Bart Allen as The Flash was never necessary. DC already had an established character, Barry Allen, as The Flash.

Unnecessary perhaps, but we got some damn good stories and characters out of Wally’s run as the Flash. We also got Impulse. How likely would DC have been to introduce Impulse if they still had Barry as the Flash and Wally as Kid Flash? And it’s hard to imagine Young Justice without Impulse.

Similarly, it was unnecessary to create Barry Allen in 1956. DC could easily have pulled Jay Garrick off the shelf, dusted him off, and revamped him, but they chose instead to create a new character using the Flash name. And this was someone who carried three titles for the better part of a decade!

Browser Wars Declared Over

Opera Watch reports that Microsoft, Mozilla, Opera and Google declared the Browser Wars to be over at a panel at Web 2.0 Expo yesterday. “Instead of trying to trump one another by adding features in point releases, the companies that developed these browsers are instead intent on advancing their use as platforms for a new generation of rich Internet applications and for tackling the hurdles that will come along with that shift in strategy.” ComputerWorld and eWeek have more details. Apple, the remaining major browser manufacturer, was not represented at the panel.

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Re: You Don’t Know Jack! (Flash spoilers)

So who or what is this Jack reference about? Is this some other (no not again!)hypertime version of Wally?

Hope not… things are complicated enough as it is. However, perception is built into the Hypertime concept – i.e. you can find yourself remembering an alternate timeline that you didn’t live (this would explain things like finding your shoes next to the couch when you’re absolutely certain you left them under the bed – one of your hypertime duplicates did in an alternate timeline, but you remember it anyway). Since Wally’s crossed zillions of possible timelines, it’s easy for his memory to have picked up bits from another one, just as in the past his eyes have appeared blue (like Walter’s) in other series.

Somehow, I have this feeling that they won’t be willing to keep it that simple.

On rec.arts.comics.dc.universe


As many people have said before, the presence of a triangle does not necessarily indicate interconnection (someone mentioned LSH/Legionnaires), and interconnection does not necessarily indicate serialization (see Superman in the early days of triangles).

As an example of nonserial interconnectedness, look at the DC One Million issues of Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter, Resurrection Man, and one of the Superman titles (I forget which one). Plots in these four issues are quite connected, and if you want you can follow from GL through MM, Supes, and Resurrection man. But the only comic that requires you to read anything else is GL – it ends on a cliffhanger. So he’s falling to Mars at the start of MM. You don’t need to see how he got there any more than you need to see how Captain Cold got to the Central City bank. So Resurrection Man heads off to Mars at the end of Supes – you only have to read it if you want to, otherwise, you can follow Superman into DC One Million #4, which tells you anything important that you would’ve missed in Resurrection Man. Or if you want to start with RM – you don’t need to know anything from the Superman issue to follow it. The only backstory needed is in the core DC1M books and maybe the JLA issue.

In the back of each issue is a list of all the DC1M issues, *in order* (with details on that week). It’s not on the cover, but it tells you what order to read the issues you picked up. If you like reading stories about green people, and you bought everything at the end of the month (and by some miracle managed to *get* the first week of DC1M that late), you now know to read Green Lantern before you read Martian Manhunter.

On rec.arts.comics.dc.universe


how important is continuity?

what if someone was to write a sequel to a famous book and in the process retconned a certain aspect of the original for the sake of the sequel?

In Arthur C. Clarke’s 2001 (the book), the monolith is found orbiting Saturn. In the sequel 2010, it’s around Jupiter. By the fourth book, the original mission from 2001 is said to have taken place around 2030 or so.

In Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park, Malcom dies at the end. He proved such a popular character in the movie that he showed up again in The Lost World (the book), alive and well.

Larry Niven completely changed the supposed background of the Ringworld in the second book of the series – instead of being built by on character’s humanoid race with cheap matter transmutation, it was actually built by Pak Protectors with a hell of a lot of resources (though this doesn’t really count – it was background, not story, and the person was lying.)

what if in Return of the Jedi (I know – it’s a movie, but bear with me) we learn that Vader wasn’t Luke’s father, he lost his hand in a farm accident while helping his uncle many years ago and all appearances of Han Solo were actually appearances of a bounty hunter named Deckerd?

This already happened. In Star Wars, it’s explained that Luke’s father was killed by Darth Vader. In The Empire Strikes Back, Vader tells Luke he *is* his father. Until Ben confirms it in Jedi, you can assume Vader’s lying – I mean, who are you gonna believe, Darth Vader or Ben Kenobi?

(Heck, while we’re at it in movies, there’s practially zero continuity from one James Bond film (or at least actor) to the next. I don’t see that hurting the series.)

On rec.arts.comics.dc.universe