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Time For A Superboy To Grow Up

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Saturday, July 3, 2010 - 11:04
Time For A Superboy To Grow Up By Andrea M. [[wysiwyg_imageupload:211:]]The comic book world is abuzz with the changes in Wonder Woman's costume and timeline. The costume I can live with; in fact, I like it. But the timeline alterations affect so many other things in the DC Universe that it's just going to be a massive screw-up. Because of this, several things have occurred to me in the last day or so regarding the massive change in Wonder Woman. I began thinking about the histories of other characters and trying to line it all up in my head. First we have Hal Jordan's replacement, Kyle Rayner. According to uber-god-writer, Geoff Johns, (and please, someone, correct me if I am wrong) Kyle was a solo Green Lantern for only four years (in DCU time) before Hal's return in Green Lantern: Rebirth. Because Geoff Johns compressed Kyle's timeline for his own storytelling needs, this is the basis of the following rant. Superman's ignominious clone, Superboy, aka Connor Kent, aka Kon-EL, was introduced just a few months prior to Kyle Rayner. Connor is a clone and aged to the physical maturity of a 16-year-old. Let's totally geek this out and do the math, shall we? In the same year Kyle Rayner gets the ring, Superboy was created. Okay, four years later the Green Lantern Corps is reconstituted and Hal Jordan comes back to life. So, 16 + 4 equals 20. Yet, Connor is still a teenage high school student, while Kyle is shown to be much older. Why? Is someone at DC not doing their math? Has no one stopped to think that while everything is going on, time is still progressing in the DCU? They tried pulling the Peter Pan thing on Superboy, making it so he would always be a teen forever (Superboy, Vol 4). People hated the idea, so they fixed it. Please, no one pull out Power Rangers or 21 Jump Street on me because the people at DC aren't maintaining their timelines in a coherent and meaningful way. "Connor died and returned; couldn't they just say they de-aged him a few years?" according to Managing Editor of Cosmic Book News Don Smith. That is not a bad idea, but it did not work that way. I read the Johns's Legion of Three Worlds that came during the Final Crisis several times, and when Brainiac revived Superboy, he did not de-age him. In fact, the timeline, as stated, is accurate. Trust me, there is a big difference between how many Guardians run the Green Lantern Corps -- 24 one week, then nine the next -- but if they want to gut Wonder Woman's continuity, fix Superboy's. CONNOR KENT Continuity is the backbone of good story-telling and when major holes like this one jump up and bite the reader, it makes people like me a bit mad. I believe that allowing teenage characters to become adults in the progression of time does allow for good drama and better stories. You can only read teen angst stories with a single character so many times before it becomes stale (and here I am calling out Twilight). Superboy has had his time. I think it's time for Connor, like Dick Grayson before him, to move on from being under the shadow of his mentor and become his own man. Ever since he was introduced into the major timeline, his character's motto has been, "I must prove I can be Superman." Why? I understand the motivation of this early after he was introduced. But in recent years, it's been proven he's more than a capable character in both the hero side of his life and in the civilian side (teenager component aside). He should take a new hero identity and stand on his own feet and not under the shadow of the "S" shield on his chest. Time to step up to the plate, DC. SuperBOY is now a 24 or 25-year-old character, according to your own timelines. Can we please mature him and move on?