Continuity counts in my book

 I think “Continuity” is one of the things that keeps me reading comics. What’s continuity? It’s the concept that everything that has been previously published in a character, and universe’s, history counts. This means that Daredevil should recognize Doctor Doom, even if they only met once 10 publishing years ago.
Here are some thoughts I have on the subject and whether creators should “stick with it” or not:

  • I like to see new writers attempt to work their stories into the lore.
    Sometimes you can really add an interesting and clever twist to story
    by utilizing “what happened before.”
  • I don’t mind the way the
    current timeline works in DC Universe, in that they do the “this
    happened 4 years ago” schtick, even if it was published 20 years ago.
  • When I read a story with dated references, I might snicker, but it
    doesn’t bother me. I’m not even sure why people are annoyed by this.
  • When I read a story where the character is somehow tied to a specific
    event (such as the Vietnam War), I just gloss over it. Again, no big
    deal. Sometimes I think they should just ret-con it to a more recent
    event. (The Punisher could easily be ret-conned to the Gulf War for
  • In my opinion Ret-conning is acceptable as long as it retains
    the key concepts of a character or story. Changing the Punisher from a
    U.S. war veteran to a former member of the Evironmental Liberation
    would be bad. Changing him from a Vietnam to a Gulf War vet isn’t
    too horrible.
  • Continuity seems the best way to keep people
    buying comics, especially since there are so few comics written for a
    younger audience.
  • I’m still surprised that Marvel didn’t use the
    Ultimate line to restart their universe. I don’t mind when a company
    does this, as long as they really do start from scratch or provide good
    patches to old continuity problems.
  • Letting characters age is
    a wonderful concept, but seems to encounter a lot of obstacles:
    commercial issues, writers and artists might prefer a particular
    version/time period and the fan base might not accept the changes. This
    is the only real issue with Continuity for me. Spider-Man is obviously
    an experienced crimefighter with hundreds of battles under his belt,
    but he’s just a guy in his teens/20s. It just doesn’t work unless you
    through aging/contintuity out the window


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