"The Reclamation Project"
-- inspired by Mark Waid's JLA #20-21
In the early 1990s,
a very mediocre mini-series just about ruined the character of Adam Strange
by destroying every element which made his adventures so enjoyable. After
a couple years of poor appearances in other titles, Adam's glory days
were restored by a two-part story in JLA #20-21.
Writer Mark Waid's
story wasn't perfect. It had some implausabilities, a few plot holes and
scientific inaccuracies. Nevertheless, the important thing was that Mark
had succeeded in bringing back a character thought to be irretrievably
DC has lost
numerous good characters to poor planning, badly conceived "revamps"
and just downright lousy writing. Adam Strange was one; now he's back,
almost as good as ever. Couldn't something also be done to reclaim Hawkman,
restore the Metal Men, revitalize Guy Gardner, ret-con Hal Jordan or
reanimate Tora "Ice Maiden" Olafsdotter?
Which brings us
to this project:
Write a short prose story which restores a character to "greatness".
The method is up to you. Due date: August 25th
- The reclamation project is intended to somehow reclaim characters
widely considered to be "ruined". This means superheroes who were
killed off badly/cheaply, superheroes whose "revamps" changed their
characters and rendered them unusable, or characters who were in some
other way mis-handled by a writer who just "didn't get the concept"
and ruined the character's chances of ever seeing daylight again.
Suggested characters are below. It's possible that you may know of
another character needing reclamation, but you should e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
and ask. No sense in your slaving away for three months just to discover
that Booster Gold doesn't qualify because he's already restored!
- There is no need to stake your claim. There can be 100 different
entries for Hal Jordan and no other characters submitted; we don't
- Stories must take place IN THE CURRENT DCU. In other words, DC could
publish this next week and it would fix the problem. So, no Elseworlds.
No dream stories. No "this would have worked if they'd done it in
1994 before Starman appeared."
- Prose format is suggested; script format will work, but we've heard
from many who don't like to read script and Fanzing is primarily for
entertainment (i.e. intended to be read!).
- These should be full stories, not plot proposals, springboards,
samples or summaries.
- Please send your document as either an RTF document (that's "Rich
Text Format" - extension ".rtf" - a very common format which can be
saved and read by most modern word processors, and it allows bolding,
italics, etc) or as a MS Office/Word document (extension ".doc").
E-mail it to email@example.com
- Submissions should follow all of our regular rules for submitting
fiction. It must "not suck", it cannot be rife with typos and poor
grammar, and we reserve the right to refuse publication.
- ALL qualifying works will be run in the August issue, and we will
declare one of them the best. To be fair, author's names will be hidden
from the judges. (We're still working out the details here, as we
need to include copyright when published on the web but we'd like
the readers to cast their own votes.)
- HAWKMAN (& GOLDEN AGE HAWKS & SHINING KNIGHT or possibly SILENT
KNIGHT) - Katar Hol was already somewhat messed up by his modern day
introduction. Then he was merged with numerous other "Hawk Avatars"
including the Golden Age Hawkman and Hawkwoman as well as either the
Silent Knight or the Shining Knight (this is a rather messy point),
thus ruining several other characters in the process! And THEN this
messed up character was consigned to limbo.
- METAL MEN - Read my Retconvention
on the Metal Men to see how a writer who just missed the bloody
point ruined the concept; the team is still around, but their
glory days are forever lost and their history has been trashed.
- GREEN LANTERN (HAL JORDAN) - No slam on Kyle here, but Hal Jordan
suffered from a very bad editorial decision which had him acting grossly
out of character just to get him to point B, the introduction of someone
else as GL. All attempts to "placate the Jordan-lovers" have misunderstood
that admitting he was once great is not the same as rectifying the
injustice which has sullied his memory.
- GUY GARDNER - Had a great thing going until "Emerald Twilight"
spilled over into his mag and wrecked his Sinestro ring. This brought
about the "Warrior" phase in which he got rid of the bowl-cut and
the entire look/attitude that had made him popular since 1985.
- ICE (TORA OLAFSDOTTER) - The writers of JLA wanted to kill off
someone that would shock the readers
and ended up eliminating one
of the most enjoyable characters left in the book! It's no surprise
that JLA tanked after her death.
- BLUE DEVIL - Robinson said "Hey, I need some dead weight characters
to kill off for dramatic purposes in Starman!" and Blue Devil,
Amazing Man and Crimson Fox bought the farm. Feel free to revive one
or more. Blue Devil had actually been ruined earlier in Underworld
Unleashed and JLA, both of which had Dan Cassidy acting
very out of character. The guy's got a deal with the devil AND recuperative
powers, so his death being permanent is unlikely.
- AMAZING MAN - The grandson of the original All-Star Squadroneer.
He'd been wasted in Extreme Justice but deserved better than
the silly death in Starman. Do you think a bullet from a normal pistol
could shatter glass as thick as the human body?
- CRIMSON FOX - Again, a lousy death. She has amazing animal instincts
but doesn't know her throat was cut?
- FIRESTORM - As the fusion of an inexperienced teen and a counseling
professor, he was vibrant. As a solo act
boring! Find some way to
- HAWK AND DOVE - Wrecked by a last-minute effort to change the ending
of Armageddon: 2001.
- DEATHSTROKE - Generally considered ruined by Titans fans.
Article and layout © Michael
All characters are © 1999 DC Comics.