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Aging heroes in US comics 
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Only a thought, but American comics being on a monthly or bi-monthly schedule might suggest that stories and continuity run much slower in comic world than in reality. So a years worth of Avengers, say, takes place at a much slower rate than "real" time passes. The ageing process therefore, if it takes place at all, happens at a much slower rate to our eyes. But, it is comics and we take them too seriously at our peril. They are entertainment.
Ageing has happened with the Justice Society. I can't speak about American comics over the last decade or so as I don't read them but the JSA were shown as being much older when they encountered the JLA all those years ago.
The Phantom ages and dies at regular intervals and his son takes over as Ghost Who Walks. Mind, the current bun seems to have been hanging on for an inordinately long time.
Muffy mentioned Batman, and there are some Batman stories which tell of a Batman in the 19th century, some of them being Elseworlds but some have appeared in the ongoing run of some DC titles. Wish I could remember the details.
The classic not ageing characters are many of those from the story papers. Billy Bunter and the Famous Five always repeat the same school year, even though the stories are set in the current reader's year. Same with the boys of St. Franks.


Tue Sep 23, 2014 8:06 pm
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A Freudian slip there? I think you might mean 'current one' :lol:

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Tue Sep 23, 2014 8:32 pm
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paw broon wrote:
Only a thought, but American comics being on a monthly or bi-monthly schedule might suggest that stories and continuity run much slower in comic world than in reality. So a years worth of Avengers, say, takes place at a much slower rate than "real" time passes. The ageing process therefore, if it takes place at all, happens at a much slower rate to our eyes.
That much has always been accepted. It's also why characters can be in several different titles at the same time, because the stories are actually happening at different times.
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But, it is comics and we take them too seriously at our peril. They are entertainment.
Ageing has happened with the Justice Society. I can't speak about American comics over the last decade or so as I don't read them but the JSA were shown as being much older when they encountered the JLA all those years ago.
Though still younger than they should have been, which Roy Thomas explained in-story by saying that the JSA members and several of their supporting cast were exposed to some sort of radiation in 1941 that slowed down their ageing.
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The Phantom ages and dies at regular intervals and his son takes over as Ghost Who Walks. Mind, the current bun seems to have been hanging on for an inordinately long time.
Muffy mentioned Batman, and there are some Batman stories which tell of a Batman in the 19th century, some of them being Elseworlds but some have appeared in the ongoing run of some DC titles. Wish I could remember the details.
The classic not ageing characters are many of those from the story papers. Billy Bunter and the Famous Five always repeat the same school year, even though the stories are set in the current reader's year. Same with the boys of St. Franks.
And for how many years was JCT Jennings 11 years old? :lol:

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Wed Sep 24, 2014 8:12 am
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Starscape, you're not far off the mark. I think a lot about fruit scones. :) Actually I got into the habit years ago of saying "currant bun" in place of "current one".
In the Starman series, wasn't Wesley Dodds shown as an old man? At this rate I'll be digging through boxes trying to find other examples. Don't make me do it, please. :roll:


Wed Sep 24, 2014 8:43 am
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starscape wrote:
That whole 'I'm a rubbish man but a great superhero, so Steve Rogers will be the disguise and Cap the real person' is so unMarvel. I've often thought Cap and Batman shopuld swap universes. Bats can be the loner with a closet full of insecurities, whilst Cap can be the everyman Superman, all flash (no pun intended) and heroic, with none of the demons Marvel insists on.


You haven't read any DC in a loooong time, have you? DC has been getting more angsty and tortured for a while now, and the current (Not Very) New 52 is like a '90s Marvel renaissance, only with fewer pouches. Meanwhile Marvel is actually a lot more upbeat and fun these day. Right now the comic I'm most looking forward to is a title that features Gwen Stacy (Spider-Man's iconic dead girlfriend) with spider powers, and in an all girl rock band called The Mary-Janes. It looks to be a fabulous melange of fun and angst, and even has the most excellent title of Spider-Gwen.

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Tue Oct 14, 2014 9:06 am
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Actually, I now only read new DC comics. I've always been a Marvelite but even the stuff I like, e.g. Captain America, has been consumed by the never-ending mega-plots. I know we could accuse DC of something similar but Johns just has a way of massaging it to be worthwhile.

I guess I was talking classic Marvel/DC though. Kind of their raison d'etre. DC a world of magic. Marvel a world of angst. But I guess that actually finished when Gerry Conway moved over in the 70s! Or before with Green Lantern/Green Arrow.

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Tue Oct 14, 2014 9:56 am
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starscape wrote:
Actually, I now only read new DC comics. I've always been a Marvelite but even the stuff I like, e.g. Captain America, has been consumed by the never-ending mega-plots. I know we could accuse DC of something similar but Johns just has a way of massaging it to be worthwhile.

I guess I was talking classic Marvel/DC though. Kind of their raison d'etre. DC a world of magic. Marvel a world of angst. But I guess that actually finished when Gerry Conway moved over in the 70s! Or before with Green Lantern/Green Arrow.

If you want an angst-free, genuinely enjoyable Marvel title, check out the new Ms Marvel series. Despite the title, it's not the 1970s character but an American Muslim schoolgirl named Kamala Khan who has just discovered she has super powers, and it's absolutely wonderful.

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Tue Oct 14, 2014 2:26 pm
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starscape wrote:
Actually, I now only read new DC comics. I've always been a Marvelite but even the stuff I like, e.g. Captain America, has been consumed by the never-ending mega-plots. I know we could accuse DC of something similar but Johns just has a way of massaging it to be worthwhile.


Funny, I've been a long time DC fan, but I got sick of the relentless misery and now I'm almost exclusively reading Marvel. I did pick up the new Gotham Academy, but I fear it won't survive long. Both companies are obsessed with mega-plots and line-wide "events", but it's not impossible to avoid them. And every so often one comes across that's worth reading, like the current Edge of the Spider-verse, which may only be in Spider-Man titles but is actually a lot of fun, not only because it features Spider-Otto but also because it introduces the aforementioned Spider-Gwen.

Also, three thumbs up on Ms. Marvel. :up: :up: :up:

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Tue Oct 14, 2014 2:30 pm
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...And another one from me! :up:

Kamala is a real breath of fresh air! :)


Tue Oct 14, 2014 8:36 pm
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tony ingram wrote:
starscape wrote:
Actually, I now only read new DC comics. I've always been a Marvelite ...I guess I was talking classic Marvel though. Kind of their raison d'etre. Marvel a world of angst.

If you want an angst-free...

Pretty much the opposite of what I want, hence why, until lately, I always preferred Marvel.

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Tue Oct 14, 2014 10:04 pm
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