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Official: Barry Allen/Iris West marriage falls victim to DC relaunch

Although this won’t raise the pop-culture alarms that news of the end of the marriage of Clark Kent and Lois Lane did, DC Comics has confirmed that another, much older union will bite the dust in the publisher’s line-wide relaunch: that of Barry Allen and Iris West.

The word comes this afternoon from editor Brian Cunningham, who writes at The Source that Barry, like Clark, is a single man who’s never been married. “I’ll give you all a few seconds to take that in and digest it,” Cunningham says.

That’s right, as with Clark and Lois, post-Flashpoint the nearly 45-year-old marriage of Barry Allen and Iris West never happened. It’s probably not a huge surprise, considering the push to make  superheroes younger and/or more relevant tends to involve the jettisoning of spouses (see also: Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson).

But in the New 52, Iris and Barry aren’t dating, either. No, like Lois, The Flash is seeing somebody else — in his case, his longtime lab assistant Patty Spivot, who was introduced back in 1977, when Barry and Iris had only been married for 11 years. Surely the Central City Police Department has rules about relationships in the workplace …

“If that upsets you, sorry about that,” Cunningham writes. “But I make no apologies for opening up a traditional storytelling avenue with our hero’s romantic life, something that’s been shut closed for a very long time now. This is no indictment of marriage. I’m a married man and wouldn’t trade it for anything. But in the realm of fiction, I feel strongly that this change to Barry opens up fresh, new creative directions and exciting new storylines.”

He assures Iris fans that she’ll remain a part of The Flash‘s supporting cast, writing a blog for the Central City Citizen’s website.

The Flash #1, by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato, arrives in stores Sept. 28.



In San Diego, they suggested that Barry was going to be “playing the field.” I had a little fun with an old Bronze Age panel:

This news had already been announced several weeks ago.

I would prefer to see Barry and Iris married, but I don’t have a big problem with it. The most recent Flash series by Geoff Johns pretty much abandoned Iris and had Barry mooning after Patty anyway.

But I think Cunningham’s remarks are way to flip towards older readers. He needs to work on his communication skills a bit.

At this point a married superhero is actually going to be more interesting than a single one to my mind, since it seems like there are pretty much no married superheroes anymore.

Let’s make every character in comicdom single. I say we use some infinity gems and break up Reed and Sue.

It looks like Aquaman and Mera are married, or at least a couple, but beyond that I’m not aware of any in the DCU.

I have no problem with Barry and Iris not married…. but how does Bart Allen fit in the new 52… a Kid-Flash is in the Teen Titans.. and what about Wally West. I guess we will see how this all works out.

It seems unlikely, but, for a trade, I’d like to see Booster Gold married to the Greek woman from the Flashpoint universe. I’d also like to see Karen Starr end up marrying Mr Terrific.

If I remember right, Wally predates the marriage anyway, so having them not be married yet isn’t that important – so long as they have some form of relationship so she can introduce Barry and Wally.

Besides, it does allow for new stories that we haven’t seen before.

I’m going to wait and see where the book goes rather than worry too much.

Gawd, I hate New Coke DC.

First time around, Barry went to the future, had children, one of whom gave birth to Bart, and then both Barry and Bart returned to the 20th century.

There’s no reason to assume that Bart can’t either still be Barry’s grandson from the future, or his great-great-great-(etc.) grandson from the future.

Just because Barry isn’t married yet doesn’t mean Bart can’t still be his * grandson.

I enjoy the idea because, let’s face it, all of the Silver and Bronze Age stories that had “romance” between Barry and Iris were… weak on the romance, to say the least. I’d like to see a bit of real relationship building with Barry and whoever. I want to see him with Iris in the end, but let’s make it nice and tumultuous to start out with, like the amazing roller-coaster that was Wally and Linda.

But… there is the Bart Allen question. That’s gonna be an interesting one to explain. Either they change his relationship to Barry (make him some kind of great-nephew or something), or Bart doesn’t reveal his real grand-parentage until later. I don’t see that second one lasting long, though, and I’m not too fond of the first one. Johns has already distanced Bart from Barry too much. I want some relationship building there, too.

Good luck, Mr. Manapul and Mr. Lobdell!

Has it been confirmed that the Kid Flash in Teen Titans is indeed Bart Allen? Maybe it’s actually Wally, and that’s why no one is saying anything about his status. It stands to reason that if they’re de-ageing characters, maybe some of the adults are teens again.

Yes, it’s been confirmed that the Kid Flash in Teen Titans is Bart, not Wally.

Ugh! I’d say it bugs me but I still think Barry should have stayed “dead”/on the other side/in the Speed Force. I’m more upset about the Lois/Clark marriage being OMD’d away. However in the past 3 years, DC hasn’t done ANYTHING with their marriage anyways (New Krypton, World Without A Superman, Grounded, Reign of the Doomsdays) so I guess it really didn’t matter in the end.

I suppose I have nothing to complain about.


If wally exist he and Linda are probably not married and kids gone too. Character develpoment is now a 4 letter word at dc

I liked a very single Barry on the old TV show.

I don’t suppose DC will introduce Megan Lockhart, though. (After the dud that was the Bilson-DiMeo Bart Flash comic, I think Dc won’t be lifiting anything from that show ever again.)

Spoiler alert: in a hush-hush trade, Mephisto has been traded to DC, and he’s been on a crazy homewrecking streak.

at least we still have buddy baker (animal man) and his wife and kids. hopefully lemire doesn’t do anything to **** that up, but i really don’t have a whole lot of faith in any one title from the relaunch. i’m sure there will be good things to come, but whatever they are remain to be seen and are purely speculation at this point.

Meh. I don’t care. After the treatment of the Flash franchise and Wally and Bart by DC over the last five years I decided to stop reading the Flash a few months before Flashpoint. This is actually one of the few new 52 titles I have no interest in picking up.

Thank you DCStorm. I was starting to think that maybe some of this may work, but after hearing the attitude being expressed towards longtime, PAYING readers, screw you too. I took a long look at the CBR poll numbers. Only seven titles of the new DCStorm titles are going to be bought, according to the poll. A gross majority of them are not even being considered, which I considered to be when the Definitely Not and Probably Not columns were more than 10 points above the total of the Definitely Will, Probably Will, and Maybe columns. I realize that it was not a scientific poll, but still, if I was a major publisher completely relaunching my product line, I would be slightly worried. Did DC need to change something, yes. Did they need to completely throw out everything we knew, I don’t think so. I honestly feel that talented and creative writers could have dealt with what they had and made it great. I hope I am wrong, mainly due to the harm it will do to friends in the retail industry if this flops, but I really do not see it being a serious success.

Even less interested. I hope this fails miserably and all of DC crumbles.

Saying they were married for 45 years is a bit of a deception. They were married from 1966 to 1977, when Iris died. She came back in 1985, immediately before Barry died. Barry returns in 2008, and Iris is fortunately simultaneously alive. They are together until this year. That’s like 14, 15 years tops.

It’s just kind of hard to imagine Barry and Iris separate. I’ve only read the early stuff where Barry and Iris were a couple, but unmarried and I’ve read the recent stuff where they’re together again. The Cary Bates stuff after Iris died is kind of foreign material to me.

Also, and I know this may sound a bit weird, but the thing I like about happily married superheroes is that it’s a reason to not focus on the character’s love life all that much. When a character is single it’s an excuse to give them all sorts of relationship drama like Spider-Man had in his early days. The truth is I just don’t care about all that stuff anymore. Married superheroes may be viewed as “boring”, but that’s kind of a plus in that I don’t need to read through all that soap opera crap.

@ Scrappy

You hope an entire company crumbles because of the decision to make the Flash a single man? Harsh.

Only in comics universes is “blogger” a viable job option for large numbers of middle class people.

Can’t say I care all that much about Barry being married.
I think marriage and children kinda ruined Wally.

Given that Bart Allen exists, Barry and Iris still get together at some point in the future. There’s no need to start them off as a married couple in the reboot. That marriage thing has really only worked well for Animal Man, and that’s because superheroics aren’t the emphasis for him.

Sigh…these cats are always so quick to talk about “storytelling” avenues being opened up. Bull

If Barry is being defined by his relationship with Iris, then a lot of work needs to be done on his character.

Not much that you can do when writers decide they aren’t good enough to write interesting stories about married characters.

Not surprised, but not pissed like other people. While comics are a major part of my life, I don’t get upset over every little thing. In fact, I don’t lol. I read comics to help keep my mind off certain things, and whether someone is single or not, isn’t going to undo that. Actually, I really enjoy the dating portion of my heroes’ life. Always loved reading about it.

I can see why they are doing it, but the corner they seem to be writing themselves into about the wider Flash Family, Wally, Bart and Jenni in particular seems problematic

Cancelled my order for Flash. I’ll tolerate it with Superman given the people involved, but not in this case. Too much, and too arrogant on Cunningham’s part in the way he phrased it.

It’s always hilarious to compare the reboot of marriages to the garbage that was OMD. Yes, the top guys at DC are responsible for the marriage ending, but they didn’t interject themselves into a story as The Devil himself and make Peter Parker do the single worst thing a hero can: Give up and make a Faustian bargain. That’s something you’ll never see from Clark or Barry(even though he screwed up time saving his mom)

Ugh. My mention of character delevepoment at dc being a four letter word somehow got deleted, Why? This whole reboot is anti character delevepoment.

Forget something wrong with page or something. I just don’t get why they are trying so hard to make a character people will not buy likable. Yeah stores order a bunch but they are going to have copies left over.

Bring back Wally, Barry Allen has sucked since Crisis.

I wouldn’t get so pissy if I were Cunningham. John Byrne remade the whole Superman universe in his image only to see it completely restored, Kara to Krypto to Kandor. None of these “innovations” will last.

I’m more curious as to if Barry still died in Crisis on Infinite Earths. There’s no way right? I feel like that would peg him as dead for 4 out of five of these years in the DCnU continuity. Apparently Superman still died though. I wish they had just wiped the slate totally clean.

After sales tank, Superboy will punch another wall and this will all go away. Will someone please fire Dan Didio before he bankrupts the company?

What do comics have against married couples? I’m not pissed off about Barry and Iris’ marriage being undone (seeing as I don’t really read a lot of Barry Allen stories), mind you. I’m just pissed off that everyone keeps undoing marriages in general.

Seriously, making a character single does not necessarily open up new stories to the character. If anything, it simply repeats the stories of the past. The one sort of story we don’t see nearly enough about is the married coupled, because EVERYONE who has gotten married seems to have had their marriage fall apart due to reboot or death (i.e. Spider-Man and Mary Jane, Jean Grey and Cyclops, Madelynne Pryor and Cyclops Superman and Lois Lane, Donna Troy and Robert Long, etc…) It seems the only married couples left are Reed Richards and Susan Storm and Jessica Jones, that later of which I keep expecting to end abruptly.

There is nothing wrong with having a married couple in super-heroes. After all, married couples like to have someone they can relate to in their comics as well!

Why can’t they leave one set of characters be married? Do they think that married people don’t read comics? This is so stupid, but that is the New 52!

What part of “It’s a reboot, the series as a whole is starting over” doesn’t anyone understand?

This is nothing at all like the OMD/BND fiasco.

Nobody say this stuff is like One More Day. One More Day was the most insulting thing I’ve ever read. It was just Marvel just throwing their hands up and saying ‘we quit’. I’m not sure if it was that way before they promised fans stories they couldn’t or wouldn’t tell and just rushing through it without an idea. They even got a news story on an Unmasking story that wasn’t there. It didn’t even seem like Spider-man even then.

I don’t know how the DC marriages went for the most part. But I doubt they had they a resurrection, new powers and costume, then everyone finding out who he really was just to forget about right after rather than playing out any of these concepts. I doubt they had those things before OMD. People who call it the Worst Comic Ever are absolutely right.

From a long time Marvel fan I have to say this, DC has great writing going on. I read some Green Lantern a couple years ago and it was good stuff. I read Flashpoint and really enjoyed it and it’s ending is a heroic sacrifice, not a selfish one. Justice League was an enjoyable comic aswell. I think DC has some great stuff going I want to read. I want to make the DC fans feel better. DC didn’t do what Marvel did. DC writers actually want to give fans what they promised. I think that’s something.

I always loved Marvel. Still do. But it’s messed up and those two years of Spider-man comics are the best example. I don’t think Marvel will ever acknowledge how bad it was clearly was and how (I believe) it hurt the industry. DC couldn’t possibly do anything that bad if they tried. Believe me.

Wally is better had the last book not had the name Geoff Johns attached to it the book would not have been ordered as much. DC screwed things up and could’nt admit they made a mistake. I hear Geoff Johns is gonna reboot the bible next LOL

When DC Comics stops apologizing for its own characters, and constantly trying to pull the marketing bullshit of “New and Improved!”, then I might care again. how do we make a big change? Get young, new writers who have a fresh perspective? NO. Hire young, new artists with a more contemporary sensibility? NO. They get a bunch of middle-aged men together, whose last big “touchdown” was in the early nineties, and set them loose on the DC Universe to make it more appealing to a younger demographic that they completely do not understand. I feel about this the way I felt about my mom, after I became an adult, buying me “young people’s clothes” for Christmas…it sucks. There’s a joke that the home designers on the HGTV channel redecorate a room with a predictable formula; if the walls’ colors are dark, make them light. If the furniture’s colors are dark, make it light. Just flip to the other extreme. And that’s what Dc is doing here. Divorce everybody, give them new boyfriends/girlfriends, and you have a completely superficial way of “changing” things that doesn’t ultimately require any imagination or creativity. Ultimately, this reboot entails having the same handful of writers (some of whom are sad throwbacks to an earlier era of success”) write DC books, for an audience that was so-so about these writers in the first place. Worse still, get a bunch of Image folks to try to relive their glory, like a bunch of high school jocks who never really did much after High School, at a time when comics really need bold changes, not a superficial shuffling around of things, and costumes that would have looked dated in the year 2000.

Of course! If DC is kinda starting over and making their heroes a bit younger, it’s obvious that they’ll start them single. That doesn’t mean that they won’t be married again in the future. Hence – Bart Allen!

NOT A BIGGIE! Move along… lol

I’d be more upset about this if I hadn’t already decided not to order the new Flash series, based on the fact that, as far as I know, Francis Manapul has never written a comic before.
This’ll be the first time since 1975 that I haven’t bought a Flash series…

Man, this reboot sucks in so many ways, it’s not even funny. i want my real DCU back!

Rod G., it’s not a complete reboot. Many of the existing storylines still took place in the new continuity (including recent stuff like Batman, Inc. and Blackest Night), just all compressed into 5 years with alterations to the characters who were involved. It’s more like the post-Crisis changes.


But isn’t this whole reboot pretty much OMD for the whole DCU (minus the deal with ‘devil’)? Barry saving his mom and completely changing history itself?

The only major difference I see (other than horrible ‘devil’ thing; ridiculous idea) is that among the hardest of hardcore comics fanboys hating on the current regime at Marvel is the popular thing to do. Granted, I have not been frequenting the DC boards, but I’ve been pretty surprised that the reaction to this reboot hasn’t been a explosive rejection, but whatever …

I find it funny, that this opens up new avenues for story telling. Doesn’t he means, it’s the highway for the same old stories. Oh my let’s tease this, will the hero reveal their identity to their loved one? Another love triangle between me, myself and the significant other. But, this was the way in the old universe and let’s remind everyone of that, by making some obscure reference when we decided to get rid of it all.

Wow Cunningham comes off as a real d-bag. I wasnt interested in the adventures of boring Barry before and am even less interested now. #superboyprimewasright

The bell is tolling for the DCnU right now. Cant wait for this to be heroes reborn’d out in a year or two.

Kelson, Perhaps the Batman and GL titles may have their pasts mostly unchanged, but for the rest of DC Universe, it IS a total reboot.

R.G., we’ve already been told that in the new history, Barry still died in Crisis and came back, so there’s some more past that hasn’t been erased.

Again, like with COIE, it seems that some characters are getting a full reboot, some are getting a partial reboot, and some are getting a few minor tweaks.

I think with a reboot, it makes sense to remove marriages. My biggest concern is that as R.G. just said, Batman and GL are hving soft reboots. This plain doesn’t make sense. Who came back from the dead in Blackest night (when no one has died yet)? Who fought Superboy Prime in the Sinestro Corps War. Batman raises even more difficult questions since Morrisons efforts to make everything cannon.
I would only hope that the new Darksied is at leat the dawning of the fifth world.

Way off the Barry point I know but this reboot is confusing the hell out of me (though I like JL 1).

I think DC is really avoiding reality with these changes. They have to face the facts that stories suck cause they are afraid to do them right. It`s not marriage that makes superheroes lame. It`s lame writers and lame editors.
Doesn´t matter if these reboot has a great first arc of each title, what matters is what will happen after that and then even after.
I’ve been a fan of Superman through all my life, but I’ve had to accept at some point that most of the stories they’ve written have sucked hard, and even so I kept reading cause I really need some amount of presence of Superman in my life. The last three or so years sucked BIG TIME, in fact I was starting to think that I should really cancel my subscriptions cause I was really disappointed.
Superman and Lois were better married, why? cause Superman is not a ladies man, nor will he end up with any one lese. You could divorce Peter Parker cause that kind of drama is expected from the character (instead of erasing their marriage by magic like they did!), and you certainly don´t expect to see Batman settle down… but I don´t think that seeing Clark puppy crush for Lois while she sighs for Superman for the next 50 years (or until they decide it’s time for another rebbot) is exactly going to add much excitement to the comic books.
As for Barry and Iris… if you want to make Flash hip and cool you should have stayed with Wally all along, or maybe Bart since he is actually single. I think Barry and Iris should have stayed either married or death.
Anyway, do whatever you feel it`s better, DC, but at least do it right: stop the reboots already and start writing great stories, cause I know it can be done.

I wonder why DC just didn’t do a complete reboot? A complete restart. That way while everyone who had been reading would be pissed off still, at least we could say well they are starting fresh and we don’t have to worry what was in continuity or not because it’s not happened yet. I’d been more accepting of this than the method they are using of throwing everything against the wall and seeing what sticks.
This is what should have been done after COIE and it’s what should have been done now.

Lack of marriages makes sense with a reboot. It really does. OMD. Well. If that really ruined Spidey, I don’t think it’d still be Marvel’s top selling book. People just like to complain.

DC sucks, Marvel and the X-Men rulz ! !!

It’s sad that DC thinks it has to OC all of its characters, to make them fresh.

I passionately disagree with the notion that you can’t write interesting stories for married superheroes, or mature superheroes for that matter.

A good writer should be able to write married couples interestingly.
(But we havent seem much good writing at DC for quite a few years, have we? Its just the one origin story after the other, interspersed by losing of limbs, and limbs restored by crises – followed by yet another origin story.)

For some reason we are perfectly happy for a guy with adamantium fangs to butcher a whole platoon of bad guy henchman -preferably very graphically- but the idea of Clark or Barry or Peter working on their relationships, going through a divorce or -God forbid- be attracted to another woman while married – then America gets upset.

Aside from the FF (where marriage is actually part of the reason for the team), do we have any A-list superheroes left that are married?

@Jose Ulloa “I really need some amount of presence of Superman in my life.”

REALLY Jose, YOU NEED A COMIC BOOK CHARACTER PRESENCE IN YOUR LIFE REALLY ???…that line expains why all you “fanboys’ complaining about DC changes need to get a life..comic characterS have never stayed the same whether through a major reboot or through subliminal changes over the years (I have been reading and collecting since 1967).
Are you all really so pissed off about a comic book wedding ending or wiped out…did you buy the bride and groom a gift?
Holy Crap what sad comments from what must be sad people…buy ‘em read ‘em or get off the pot…yeah continuity is nice but do you put into perspective that most of these characters have been around for over 60 years as what the general public considers CARTOON characters / COMIC BOOK characters.These characters and their adventures have really never happened ’cause they don’t exist!
If your faux passion about this disolved marriage or the DC nu52 is as real as it reads then I hope your friends and family can perform an intervention, ’cause all you naysayers really scare me…again buy ‘em or not but just listen to yourselves then shut the F@CK UP!

@Peter … nope that’s not really the way continuing fiction works. Sure we know the characters in it aren’t real, but we follow their lives over years, and it’s normal to have some sort of emotional investment in them and maybe even identify strongly with one or two of them. We get used to having them around, and want to know what happens next to them. It’s actually normal to make sense of our lives in reference to them. That’s what stories are for. Comic book readers aren’t typically as bad as people who follow soap operas, but it’s the same type of connection. I don’t know any soaps in the US, but in the UK if suddenly the cast of Eastenders was changed, and all of the plotlines dropped there’d be a huge outcry. It’s bad enough when a popular character dies and the BBC gets deluged with flowers. Caring about the characters means that you’ve got caught up with the narrative,and if the writers negate the whole thing, then in some way it feels like that emotional investment has been undermined. The only character in the DCU whose evolving narrative I’ve got caught up in is Renee Montoya’s. If in the DCnU I find out she doesn’t have the mark of cain any more, or worse is straight or a cop again, I will feel cheated.

Brian from Canada

September 3, 2011 at 3:55 am


America gets upset because the superheroes are role models to kids — a point Wertham underlines in Seduction Of The Innocent. The innocent see violence but that’s okay, America’s historically violent (born in revolution, most defining moment is a civil war, etc.). The innocent see the destruction of marriage, it’s not okay because it sends a message that the institution of marriage isn’t worth fighting for.

And that, I think, is the biggest problem at both majors — Marvel *and* DC.

How many recent films have you seen that show a stable marriage for the main character? How many shows? When television resolves romantic tension, ratings drop — see Moonlighting, for the best example. But that’s because those shows’ romantic tension is a core piece of the concept of the series — much like today’s movies need to have a suffering hero romantically because young writers of today cannot seem to conceive of a world where marriage is a stable institution for their characters on film either.

But it’s not the core concept of the comic. Spider-Man is all about Peter staying true to his vow to his late Uncle Ben to use his power for good: no matter who he dates, or marries, that never disappears. Superman is always the refugee to our world, the country boy in the big city — Lois Lane just happens to be the opposite ideal that keeps him in Metropolis.

WE as long-term readers of the series get that. Hell, the media as long-term reporter of the characters’ places, understands that. Marrying the characters is a long time coming but doesn’t change the character at their core or the fact that they do superhuman feats to save us ordinary humans.

Were Quesada and/or Didio to understand that, we’d have the marriages intact. But they don’t. They surround themselves with writers who cannot conceive of the hero battling for ideals other than a damsel in distress. They surround themselves with writers who cannot conceive of the marriage as not being something that’s consistently a background setting.

And what’s worse for me is that, for all of Quesada’s harumphing about how the marriage had to go, Stan Lee has made the whole OMD a dream and brought back the marriage in the strips — and it works fine. If Stan can do it, why can’t anyone else? Similarly, if we could get years of Lois & Clark, or Barry & Iris, why does it suddenly not work?

The need to add new characters of their own is strong in these writers: too bad they don’t realize that other married couples add a different dimension to the characters’ world, and the constant need to slip out and save the world makes those relationships rather different (as the late Ordinary Family series pointed to as well).

Whatever. Barry Allen has been dead to me for 25 years.

I’m so glad DC has ruined their entire comics universe. For years I’ve been wanting to quit buying comics, but after a thirty year addiction, I needed help breaking free. When Bendis ruined the Avengers, that helped me lose interest in Marvel. But I still couldn’t stop…

Thank you, DC, for providing the perfect “jumping off” point!

Has anybody noticed that DC is trying to duplicate Valiant’s success from the 90’s? Just saying…

I just want to say thank you DC for saving me and my family some money, because I have stoped buying all DC comics now. The one character that I have been reading for the past 25 years has officially been destroyed beyond repair. Making Wally West (flash) totaly irrelevant was a poor marketing decision, Barry Allen is one of the most borring character DC created, that’s why he was made a marter in the first place. I guess those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it.

This is a surprise? More following the course. Six months from now, this debacle will be retroed and all will be back to normal unless Johns, Didio and Lee plant their feet in the ground and then maybe a year or so and it will be changed again. They can’t help but shoot themselves… Sooooo sad….

First, death, then now, marriage! Gone are the days the sacredness of union were taken seriously and responsibly!

I think there’s a lot of things that make Barry difficult to keep as Flash. I hear many complain that Wally was Barry Lite but in many ways it’s the other way around. Wally was fleshed out when there was a demand for more 3 dimensional characters. Barry was not. To flesh Barry out is to turn him now into Wally.

Also many of the things that made the Flash interesting and set the whole concept apart from other superheroes is the concept of legacy. People weren’t angry that Bart took over, they were angry he took over prematurely (though a concept I think that they should’ve gone with rather than Emo-Bart. It would’ve resonated much more with my generation that is being thrown into a much darker world prematurely). To take it back to Barry is to destroy that concept that made the Flash so great during the 90s.

And last you have a 25 year history of Barry that is focused on one thing- his death. That is all I ever knew about Barry. The saint of the DC universe that saved everyone and sacrificed himself. Nothing he’s done since or I think he’ll ever be able to do will ever push that story from the back of the mind of many. They want something new and fresh? Start with Barry’s death 5 years into his career and Wally taking his mantle again. It’s not even a difficult concept to market for a movie. It would actually probably make for a much more interesting origin than a lighting bolt to some beakers.

I usually just watch and read here but damn this is driving me crazy….

@Brian from Canada

You seem to saying that marriage is important to the books at least in some instances or can lend it self to an interesting storyline…I don’t have a problem…but this thread seems to trying to say that it can be a tool of learning or some sort of way to impress upon the reader that marriage is not a “bad” thing agaIn no problem..I am going on 39 years of marriage.

But it seems to me all this is coming from guys who are in an establish marriage with wives who either are comfortable with their partners hobby or not judgemental about comics and the cost of collecting them.

OK …comics are “overpriced” comic events are over the top, the people collecting are really not that young but do have disposable income, young people are not buying…desparate times…DC says we gotta change things and Dan Didio said it best..we don’t want to wake up to find 10,000 fans buying one book for 20.00.

All this DC nu52 is necessary, not because every book will be perfect, not because a comic book marriage is right or wrong but because comic books need to return to what they were meant to be, books for young kids and teens, books to buy and read with a sandwich on a lazy Saturday… continuity buffs and lunatic collectors sure no problem but it’s those people who have made this mess, when Marvel first appeared they were contnuity only in the fact that they came out every month with different and at the time more hip characters but no continued stories, one book one story…dialogue between the characters often bordered on the simplistic looking back now but then Bobby Drake and Warren Worthington were as cocky and smart ass as Green Lantern is in the nu Justice League #1.

We need to understand and that we is meant for you fanboys, these books have to reach the kids, they have to be clean and simple and smart at the start up, these comics need to reboot a new breed of reader a young reader who I have no doubt if comics still exist in 30 years will be the fanboys of their time…

This brings me back to the marriage idea, for a young kid I’m not at all sure it’s an important comic tool to show these Super Heroes as married…does a young boy or girl really care about what married life really means or will they better people when they grow up and ASKED SOMEONE TO MARRY THEM USING A COMIC BOOK MARRIAGE AS A TEMPLATE… not really. I don’t mind someone getting married but relax, if after 39 yaers of marriage and ove 20 thousand comics I still am learing things about my partner, comics were a non starter in making me a better husband.

Lets give DC’S writers and editors and decision makers a chance to give these characters a new birth and give us new stories…screw what went on in the past, lets hope that their will be a rebirth of the comic book.

I’d rather have Barry date someone than see comics disappear from the landscape because fans stop buying for an inane reason or because a younger generation was not interested in a .1 jumping on point comic book or felt they needed to buy a hundred books to get caught up…these books are important but not for the reasons collectors and fanboys believe…they have always allowed us to escape, they don’t do that anymore, they need to help us escape again..

“Lets give DC’S writers and editors and decision makers a chance to give these characters a new birth and give us new stories…screw what went on in the past, lets hope that their will be a rebirth of the comic book.”

Let’s not. How many years have Dan and his Hollywood cronies had to get things right, even before this last-minute ‘Hail Mary’ pass? They simply don’t deserve any more of my money after sweeping all of previous mistakes, along with already established character progression they could never come up with, under a rug.

This post inspired me to write a blog post for story ideas for superhero marriages. I tried to come up with ten ideas but could only come up with 25.

Getting rid of Barry and Iris’ marriage is VERY DISAPPOINTING.

I’m sad.

That’s all.

Hopefully this will boost the value of my “5 Star Superhero Spectacular” back issue. (Patty’s first appearance).

You know, this “reboot” is coming off as “shoddy” to me. To quote from “The Mighty Boosh” (from the episode called “Eels”:

“Elements of the past and future combining to make something not quite as good as either.”

In this context, DC Comics should have started from scratch, and then build upon from their. But now, the company mucked up those elements that I liked for the sake of including the WIldstorm stuff. Poor planning, I think…

@Peter I never comment but… You say this is good for the kids. Well I know a couple of kids who won’t be buying DCnU until it’s back to DCU. Those kids love the continuity aspect of the universe.

I’m sure they’ll get around to marrying Batman and Robin at some point.

If angry fans buy more comics, nixing marriages isn’t going to work. It’s passe. They should go the opposite route. Forget pants or star spangled shorts, have Wonder Woman married to Steve Trevor. Happily. For several years.

let me work up some ire about this. Wait… I don’t read sucky comics


re: ” They simply don’t deserve any more of my money after sweeping all of previous mistakes, along with already established character progression they could never come up with, under a rug.”

Sorry KET, DC can’t hear you. The celebration over all the 3rd printings is too loud. Wait…no, they did hear you. They just don’t give a rats ass about your cranky old fanboy dollars.

What an odd little world we live in where Superman, The Flash and Spider-Man are no longer married and the happiest marriage in comics is currently…John Constantine’s?!


That’s right, “DC doesn’t give a rat’s ass about [my] cranky old fanboy dollars.”

Which is why they’re getting roughly 60% fewer of them going forward.

And I maintain that getting new, younger fans into the comics would be better achieved with lower cover prices (with cheaper paper to pay for that–say, $2.50 on Mando paper, maybe?) and by not doing 90-part crossovers involving multiple titles.

So the Superman books weren’t selling prior to this? Maybe it’s because, hey, Superman WASN’T IN THEM FOR TWO YEARS. During that whole “New Krypton” arc, “Action Comics” had nice painted covers featuring the new Nightwing and Flamebird and followed that with a year of “Action Comics featuring Lex Luthor.” Superman’s last cover appearance on that book was #874, and without digging through every single issue I believe that was the last time he was on the cover until #900. And he wasn’t in “Superman,” either, during “New Krypton.” So a book with a big “SUPERMAN” logo on the cover didn’t have Superman in it for over a year, after which the gorgeous John Cassaday covers had him walking across the country moping for a year.
The problem wasn’t the marriage, it was NOT HAVING THE TITLE CHARACTER IN THE BOOK!
Hell, Bruce Wayne was gone for a year, but “Batman” HAD SOMEONE IN A BATMAN COSTUME IN THE BOOK! And “Detective” had Batwoman for a year and then SOMEONE IN A BATMAN COSTUME IN THE BOOK! We didn’t get “World Without A Batman” and “Detective Comics featuring the Joker.”

So… What about Wally’s marriage, and his TWO kids? What about Wally, at all? Are they going to go beyond shelving Wally? Are they going to retcon him out of existence? He was Iris’s nephew, after all. Jeez louise. Why DIDN’T they just do a hard reboot? This all would be much easier to swallow if they were just restarting everything.

This solidifies the conclusion I’ve reached with superheroes and their romantic relationships. They don’t matter. Whatever Jane Doe these guys end up with in the latest rotation of writers, they will never last. Most will end up in the girlfriend for many years list (like what happened to Mary Jane and Spider-Man), rarely they will surpass that into wifedom. Of the rare few that become wives, there’s 100% chance that they will be retconned away from the superhero leading him into single status to repeat the process all over again with some other bimbo. I’ve lost all respect for spouses in comics. From now on any time the girl of the superhero appears, I’ll just skip over her parts. Don’t wanna get attached to the pairing since they’re doomed from the start. I’ll just read the story for the latest crossover crisis.

If the only way you can “open up fresh, new creative directions and exciting new storylines” is by throwing out the status quo, rather than work with what’s given to you, it isn’t the fault of the character or the creative teams that came before you. It means you’re a shitty writer. Go work at McDonald’s.

“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein

Although in DCnU’s case, the word “thinking” should be replaced by the words “writers” or “editors.”

I find it funny that DC removes marriages then has the character dating. For what purpose? Do these potential suitors know up front that they have no chance in hell of progressing their relationship beyond dinner, a movie and a quick feel up on a Friday night? But ONLY on a Friday night!! And no sleep overs!! That would limit the writers creativity!!!

The band-wagoneers who are so excited about the 3rd printings should really come back and comment in a few months when the sales of nearly all of the 52 relaunch books have tanked

And the band-wagoneers who have all been so pleased with their own snark and lame ass criticisms of the reboot and books they haven’t read, who are too childish to even acknowledge the fact that they are in third printings just look really sad and all sour grapey. Cheer up though, I’m sure you can get your fix of schadenfreude somewhere else while DC basks in great sales.

I started my foray into comics with the incredibly complex world of uncanny X-men # 167. I was never put off as a new reader by the continuity. Actually the difficulty in understanding what was happening was what drove me on. I felt because of the deep history of the series and strong, fleshed out charecters they were worth getting to know. This is what I feel D.C. and lately Marvel is missing the point on. Wally was a outstanding Flash because of his legacy as the former Kid Flash,it built on the mythological world of the Flash. It is not a crime to kill off a character heroically.So I say let our heroes get married and eventually if he or she falls in battle let’s have a son or daughter to take over. I know we would miss our favorite versions, but if done right, such as Wally was it shows you can even possibly improve on a classic.


like i said, in a few months, you and your mouth will be nowhere to be found

but, you and many other simple-minded people will be dazzled by whatever new handkerchief that Marvel and DC will be waving around in a few months, to distract from the atrocious sales that most of the 52 books will be getting by then

There remains Animal Man. Which admittedly, seems to have been transformed into something ghastly. If Ellen’s gone then I’ll be following her.

As far as Barry and Iris though, the fun was when they were dating. The happy marriage is OK as a prop, the rom-com of ‘just why will Barry be later for his date tonight’ was special. If they’re not back to that state inside 12 months then complain.


Yes, there are third printings on SOME books right now. But that’s NOW. Yes, orders are high on the 52 #1’s (although I kinda wonder about the numbers on titles like “Voodoo” and “I, Vampire” and “Resurrection Man”). The REAL test will be what the orders are for the #4’s. People will actually have the first issues in their hands in October when they’re looking at the order form for the #4’s, whereas they only had sneak peeks to look at when ordering the first and second issues. Only about half the #1’s will have shipped by the time customer orders are due for the #3’s.

The whole point of this was to attract new readers, not for two or three months, but for the long haul. One kick-ass quarter won’t mean anything if sales are down to pre-relaunch levels by February.


September 5, 2011 at 12:19 pm

This discussion makes clear that fans of the 80s/90s books have dominated the marketplace for far too long. And ironically, they’re the reason we’re at this stage – more and more of them have given up in the past 10 years as they reached middle age. 10 years ago there were like 8,000-9,000 comic shops. Now there’s just over 2,000.

The era of the longtime comic fan is pretty much over. So keeping up status quos and decades of continuity? Not enough people care, guys. Might as well deal accordingly – purchase, don’t purchase…whatever. But it certainly IS a new era.

And despite being a longtime fan, I’m going to keep up digitally, even with the Flash. It looks like a great series. I still have my back issues of Waid, Bates and Johns if I want to reread them.

New history, possibilities – it could suck. But it might just be cool.


I’m not sure I agree with you. As recently as a few years ago, Marvel was putting out some really good and creative books that I looked forward to every month. I think many readers, like myself, are tuning out because the quality of stories has gone down in recent years (whether you want to blame the endless crossover events, relaunch gimmicks, or just plain bad writing).

So for me, it is the gimmicky nature of this 52 relaunch, and not so much the sense of nostalgia, that has me gladly scoffing at this desperate effort by DC

Only in comics universes is “blogger” a viable job option for large numbers of middle class people.

Yes…ONLY in comics. No other field. Not politics, not sports, not entertainment, not hollywood gossip…no, ONLY in comics is “blogger” a viable job option for lost of middle class people.

It’s kind of like when people describe a human nature phenomenon that’s relatively common and add “only in America.” That’s also a pet peeve of mine.

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