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Monday, December 19, 2005 

Making connections between characters

I was thinking about Rick Veitch's recent miniseries for The Question, in which it's written that Vic Sage knew Lois Lane when they were school together.

Now you know, this was, well, an interesting question, as to if it really works well to make connections between flagship characters like Lois, and those who're more fit for standalone stories, like Vic. After all, when Denny O'Neil reinvented Steve Ditko's 1967 Charleston creation as a vigilante living and working in a most rundown hellhole of a burg, Hub City, somewhere in the midwestern USA, in 1987, Charles Victor Szasz then became a guy who worked in a really gritty setting, and what really made it work was that the series was something you don't see much of these days outside of the Vertigo line - a stand-alone series where the adversaries were not costumed baddies, but rather realistic villains in a human-interest setting (only two or three of the baddies featured, IIRC, made reappearances at least once during that time till now). And, there were quite a few interesting supporting cast members, such as the Greek-American professor Aristotle "Tot" Rodor, Myra Connelly, the acting mayor taking the place of the hopeless drunk of a would-be politician she'd married while Vic had been away from town for about a year (she later ran for full-time, and luckliy, won), and even a police captain who may or may not have been on the take. And it featured some of the best human-interest characterization of Denny's career.

Denny even wrote a de-facto intentional ending to it when it folded in 1990, when Vic Sage decided to leave Hub City to go on a self-searching quest for himself, living and working round the midwest. He turned up once in a while, in a few one-shot specials (besides owning several issues of the late-80s series, I also own the one-shot from 1987, in which Vic found out, to his disappointment, that Myra had remarried during the time he'd left again), and even once had an affair with the post-Crisis Huntress.

It's amazing that after all this time, they'd decide to make a connection between something dark the Question to something bright like Superman's world. But, I guess it works out pretty well.

That's not saying that all these connect-the-dots ideas work out for the better. I'm still as dumbfounded as can be over what seems to be the forced notion of Captain Boomerang being the father of a cousin of Bart Allen's from the future (if they've explained how he came back in time yet, oh, won't that be a real pip). But this move with the Question, the crimefighter with no face, seems to pull it off (so to speak).

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  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
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