I don’t think there’s an actual consensus on any character. Readers who jump in at a certain point usually expect the character to act and think as the character did when they jumped into the comics. For instance, there are people who actually think that Batman should be a dumpster fire of a human being, as he was between Zero Hour and Infinite Crisis. They’re wrong, of course (80s Batman all the way!), but I understand why they think that’s the one true Batman.
I personally hate Re-boots. Feel like they change my characters that I love. Finally got into the New 52 and what felt like a year later they introduced Rebirth. Instead of changing the DCU to create more options for writing or changing our characters, let’s be more creative or introduce new characters, not rework the entire universe to accommodate struggling creativity.
I just want a story that resolves whether a teen titans existed between the original group and the 2016 vetsion
I dont like it when it looks like characters I have seen together for decades seem not to know her othet
Or knowceach other how?
In the 2016 titans teen titans teamup
Starfire seems to know Grayson but not Donna
Raven serms to know Cyborg very well in another story as they embrace warmly
And how old are Raven and Beast Boy?
In Geoff Johns Teen Tiitans she is reincarnated to a younger version
Does Beast Boy just age very slowly both emotionally.and physically?
I think continuity is important, but not the end all, be all of stories. For me, I care about a great story with great characters. If it goes against continuity a little bit, that is ok with me. All I ask is that the writers stay true to the characters and the spirit of the stories they inhabit. Continuity is needed, but not the most important thing for me.
When it comes to characters, I feel that most characters have one “true personality” that most readers would agree upon. Then some anomalies exists where a writer would for some reason try to change it, only to have the original personality resurface again.
Batman I think is a rare example of having two different personalities with the same acceptance. He is both the Dark knight and the Adam Westy fun Batman.
Supergirl for example despite having fiftyelven Dark Kara runs has always just been seen as gimicky-dark, which makes the dark runs take heavy attrition on the fanbase (oh jeez not again, can we get back to the main story again)
Batman embraces those two personalities equally well. I think it’s rare, and I think he can get away it without it feeling forced. It works in continuity for whatever reason.
So my point I guess is, if you can make it feel natural with the readers, personality doesn’t have to be in continuity. If it feels like the personality is not in a state of rest, but in an unatural rubberband position just waiting to bounce back, readers are more likely to lash out at it as the character loses shape.
I love continuity when it makes sense.
DC’s approach to reboots and the multiverse has been a good way to maintain a reasonable continuity. Most versions of characters have ten to fifteen good years of stories in them before there needs to be some rework to adjust to the changing cultural contexts of the readers.
While the reboots have gotten a bit too frequent lately, I’d rather bend toward a willingness to reboot than an artificial continuity that says 1930s Superman is the same as the latest Superman, or one in which some crazy story is written to explain the differences in what’s supposed to be the same character,
Continuing with Superman as an example, there’s at least this many long-running Superman takes.
Post-Flashpoint Superman (With Convergence/Continuation Superman living alongside)
I like the idea of looking at these as several distinct characters rather than one long story that’s supposed to somehow make sense.
I posted this panel in a discussion about the multiverse a couple weeks ago. It satirizes the weaknesses of trying to soft reboot within a single ongoing continuity approach. I love it so much.
But see, I think there are degrees and intermediate takes even within those concepts. For example, I prefer a take in the style of Denny O’Neil or Marv Wolfman who’s stoic and logical and inhabits a dark world, but is ultimately compassionate and heroic, and even (gasp) has a bit of a sense of humor every now and then.
Compare to, say, the self-absorbed jerk of Greg Rucka’s run, the Machiavellian manipulator Mark Waid made him into with Tower of Babel, or Frank Miller’s more unstable, rage-fueled take. All of the writers I’ve mentioned fall under “Dark Knight,” but they all write Batman very differently (well, O’Neil and Wolfman are pretty close).
And having those distinct personalities is just a natural consequence of how many different writers will handle a given character. I have certain preferences that I think inform my benchmark for whether I like a writer’s interpretation, but I don’t consider the fact that two writers handle the charater differently to be an error as such.
And you can break it down even further than that. Some writers–such as Englehart, Conway, Moench, and King–write him as more of a romantic. Barr and Starlin treat the no-kill rule as more of a rule of thumb. Robbins and Morrison write a more swingin’ bachelor Bruce Wayne. Batman has been all colors of the rainbow batsuit.
I believe Len Wein said continuity ties your best writer to your worst writer. I don’t care about continuity in the “in issue 367 the Riddler said this and now you’re totally undoing that” but in the character has an established personality that has some boundaries.
Too many creators saw The Dark Knight and said that’s what Batman should be, not realizing that was Batman in his twilight years when he was old and bitter. That was Batman at an extreme boundary just as Adam West is another extreme boundary. BTAS and Bronze Age Batman is the middle ground I grew up with so that’s my Batman. A little darker, okay. A little lighter, okay.
Batman has been shaped by the tragedy of losing his parents, but he still wants to do good and protect others from a similar tragedy. He’s not a relentless machine that wants to kill everyone in the underworld. Even at his darkest he tries to reform his rogues.
There’s two real ways I really care about continuity. Like @TravisMorgan was saying, I do think it’s important to stay relatively near to what makes a character or book special. If Superman was suddenly pouncing on muggers from the shadows and Batman was taking little kids on trips to the moon, it would be jarring, for me at least. But I also like continuity to be important in the short term. It throws me off when I read something in one issue, and then something else contradicts it right away. There was a period for a while where Oa seemed to exist in some books and not in others, which was probably just a timeline thing but it confused me.
Comics have evolved over the decades. The concept of a reboot is great. LOTDK was a great “reboot” of Batman’s early days. Remember Detective comics 600? There were a few retelling of Detective Comics 27. That kind of thing is cool. Robins early costume had to go…
But that’s not what we’re talking about. We’re talking about announcing a major overhaul of a lot of titles to drive interest in the series, right?I’ve had fun reading big publicity events, and the new 52 and Rebirth, etc. But they just seem gimmicky. There’s probably some junk there, but there are some great stories as well.
I try not to take fiction too seriously most of the time. So if someone dies then returns, fine. If something happens and is later undone, fine. You could argue that any time a new writer takes over and writes a new 3 issue story in a series, it’s a “reboot “. I like to see the best a creative team has to offer in a comic, and I don’t necessarily like the idea of limiting or restricting them based on what was previously published.
I do like continuity, as well. It builds history. I can say that it seems reckless to alter or throw away a big piece of a character’s history just to shake things up.
I’m probably playing both sides of the field. But my opinion is that if it’s a cool story, I’m cool with it. Like @CynicalPink mentioned, if you don’t like a new take on a series, the stories you love are still there.
Okay. So, I was pretty indifferent until New 52. The changes were too radical for me then. Especially to Starfire and Superboy.
I’m cool with Rebirth because it reads like post-Crisis. I was cool with Crisis because it was so good and so much good stuff (Man of Steel, JLI) came from it.
So, I guess I’m okay with “soft” continuity changes, but I’ve dedicated a lot of my limited brains to the history of this stuff. I guess I don’t like it when the history is changed so much that the character is completely unrecognizable.
Couldn’t agree more.
Different writers and artists, different takes. I’m not gonna like them all. At least that’s how I perceive it. I try, admittedly sometimes unsuccessfully, not to get too worked up over any of it.
I find that the more emotionally invested I am in a character, or a storyline, the more a break in continuity upsets me.