Confusion regarding Rebirth Continuity

Hey DCU team,

So what I’m struggling with is the sense of continuity in some of the Rebirth Era comics.

Mainly the following:

  1. How can Harley Quinn be in Coney Island AND imprisoned and a member of the Suicide Squad?

  2. How can Dick Grayson be a one man show in Nightwing and then the leader of the Titans in Titans? I haven’t finished reading all of Titans Rebirth Era yet but I have finished all of Nightwing and I don’t see how it fits?

  3. How does this “New Super-Man” fit into ANY sort of cannonical story? That entire character just seems so… forced.

  4. Lastly, Barbara Gordon, is she in the Birds of Prey or taking vacations to Asia? Again, I haven’t finsihed the series but I’m not seeing any sens of continuity.

  5. I haven’t even made it to Damian and Jon in “Super Sons” but I’m sure I’m going to have contnuity questions regarding the events of Damian and Jon in Teen Titans and Superman: Son of Superman.

I like to read the stories in order and I only like to read the ones that are cannonical. I have scoured the internet to find a list of which Rebirth Era comics are cannonical and which are “alternate stories”, but I can’t find anything. All I could find was a theory that Harley Quinn on Coney Island isn’t cannonical, and the Suicide Squad is.

However, what it seems like is that only the Rebirth Era series that have a REBIRTH comic to start the Era are actually cannonical. For example, Batgirl and The Birds of Prey started with a REBIRTH comic, but Batgirl did not. It seeems like The Birds of Prey is more cannonical because of that. Same with Harley Quinn and Suicide Squad. Suicide Squad started with a REBIRTH comic so it feel liks that is the actual cannonical story. However, this theory doesn’t work for Titans and Nightwing because they BOTH started with a REBIRTH comic.

Which stories are actually cannonical and which ones are alternates? I want to read all of them, but I want to start with the actual canon story in its actual canon order. Help me out, please!

Thanks for your time guys. You’re killing it with this sight and I look forward to more content!

P.S. PLEASE give Dick his Nightwing costume in Titans already… you’re killing me with the anticipation!

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Harley Quinn continuity doesn’t make any sense. Partly by design. Just assume it’s an alternate future or reality

Writers do their thing and only kind of pay attention to what’s happening around them. It’s your job to figure out a head cannon. If you can believe that Dick Grayson can avoid gunfire by doing backflips, you can believe he has time to go on solo adventures and lead a team. Similarly, most of these conflicts aren’t really conflicts.

Harley Quinn is an exception. It seems to require one of two implausible answers. 1. All Harley’s adventures come before or after Her time with Suicide Squad. 2. Her solo adventures are all in her head. Both answers don’t hold up very well. I think Harley’s a confusing mess of a character these days anyway.

  1. I’ve always assumed that characters eb and flow between. Titans isn’t a full commitment and is in New York which is supposed to be close to Bludhaven.

3.New Super-man takes place in a world which hasn’t learned about the Original Superman’s Return. When they do, they are in the context of Lex Luthor’s story as a heroic turn.

4.Barbara Gordon Lives in Burnside and commutes to Gotham to hang out with the Birds of Prey. Her vacation takes place likely before the events of Batgirl and the Birds of Prey. I like to think a characters story takes place in arcs. Being in two ongoing series doesn’t mean the events are all happening at the same time.

5.Actually, there is no inconsistancy with Super-Sons. You’ll get why eventually!

I LOVE Superman: Son of Superman. I hope you love it too. The out of continuity stories are Harley Quinn and Wildstorm. We’ve never gotten confirmation that this Harley Quinn’s events connect to the world at large. Instead the writers are dodgy. Connected events often happen through Harley reading a comic book of the in continuity event.

batman Beyond is 30 years in the future.

Also, if you are using my reading order, let me know if something seems off. I’ve tried my hardest to give a continuity and canon that holds true, but DC doesn’t tell us the order. We have to guess often times. Ultimately the order you read (outside of reading a series arcs in order) doesn’t matter. I get the frustration, but it should work itself out by the end!! (also if it’s off and you have proof, you got a small teaser spoiled and not the WHOLE STORY.) You’ll understand the more you read.

Lat me know if you any questions!

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Nathan.payson:

This reading order is everything I ever wanted in life. Thanks man!

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I think I recall Sam Humphries on DC Daily, or maybe it was his live Q&A on here, saying that Harley Quinn’s monthly purposely doesn’t pay attention to continuity.

As I’ve gotten older I’ve truly stopped caring about this stuff. I’m just after good stories.

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But look, sometimes continuity makes NO sense.

Right now, both City of Bane and Detective Comics are tie-ins to Year of the Villain (happening at the same time). In city of Bane, Bane is in charge of Gotham while in Detective Comics Batman is in charge. Um? WHAT?

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Really the answer is… WELCOME TO READING COMIC BOOKS! Nothing makes sense and nothing matters. (and I say that lovingly)

My advice (which comes with 20+ years of comics reading behind it) is don’t get bogged down by trying to make sense of continuity or trying to put it in order. Because in the end none of it holds up. When you have different writers working with the same characters and working with their own chosen stories, some lines are going to get crossed and toes will be stepped on. You point out the “problem” with having multiple Harley and Nightwing books, but the biggest example is Batman… who is EVERYWHERE and on every team at the same time.

I love the way @BatWatch put it before me here, “If you can believe that Dick Grayson can avoid gunfire by doing backflips, you can believe he has time to go on solo adventures and lead a team.”

And to go long with @ralphsix before me, as I’ve gotten older I just want good stories by good writers and good artists. I really don’t care about continuity at all.

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My answer to ALL of these questions is that it really doesn’t matter. Like, AT ALL.