So, this isn’t necessarily a question that’s been asked of me specifically but rather one I see popping up more and more as we get closer to April: just what the hell is Convergence?
“What is it?” “When’s it happening?” “What comics are involved?” “Do I need to duck and cover?!” Never fear! I’ve got all the info you could want, and more, and all you have to do is keep reading!
To make it easier, I’ve split this into the following sections:
Now, obviously this event is yet to actually commence so don’t hold me accountable if, when it does kick off, DC have mislead people on what it’s going to be like. For now we can only go by press releases, solicitations and info they give us.
What is Convergence?
So Convergence is a big DC event designed to happen over two months, starting in April. All the regular DC books won’t be published over those two months and instead we’ll get a bunch of two-shots (basically short series only consisting of two issues). You can see a list and little previews of all of these here.
This part of the Wikipedia sums it up well, and I’ll expand on the premise later:
On November 3, 2014, DC Comics chose to end months of speculation by announcing the Convergence miniseries. Not only would the event serve as a concluding event to The New 52: Futures End and Earth 2: World’s End, but it would indeed involve characters from the pre-Flashpoint universe, but with a twist. That twist being the involvement of Brainiac and his acquisition of access to all of DC Comics’ current and previous timelines after torturing the location of Vanishing Point out of Booster Gold in Booster Gold: Future’s End #1.
So yeah. If you read Booster Gold: Future’s End #1, which was pretty great, you’ll know that set up more questions than it answered. Hell, it built on the final scenes from Justice League International #12 from way back in 2012, which saw Booster meeting a future versions of himself and then fading away!
Did you read those and want to know more? Have you been reading Futures End and/or Earth 2: World’s End and wondering where this is all going? Did you read Superman: Doomed #2 and were curious about that image at the end that showed Brainiac surrounded by shards of realities after being thrown in black hole?
Convergence is the answer.
Why is it happening?
Well, there’s two parts.
The real world explanation for this is that DC are also moving offices to the west coast at this time. This means they can have Convergence all ready to go before the move as many of the Convergence writers arn’t penning regular series for DC, and most who are aren’t taking part. I’m not implying this is the only reason that Convergence is taking place but it seems a safe bet that this the reason the event is scheduled for these two months.
Secondly, DC have denied that the event is designed to fix continuity errors that arose from some pre-Flashpoint stories carrying over from the old Universe into The New 52, but speculation for this being the reason is why it was nicknamed the ‘bandaid’ event before DC announced the official title. People suspected that it could mean the return of pre-Flashpoint characters but there’s no reason yet to suspect that.
Certainly a lot of books are being cancelled in March and a lot of new ones are starting up in June after Convergence but for now we don’t know how much lasting impact, if any, the event will have.g
Dan DiDio, DC’s Co-Publisher along with Jim Lee, did however say the following about the event, making it sound like a proper send off to old characters:
“Those forty cities come from what we call doomed worlds and timelines from throughout DC’s lore … One of the things that happened with the New 52 is that when we launched the New 52 and we had the Flashpoint story that got us there, the stories that were taking place in the regular books ended rather abruptly and I think that’s where some of the concern comes from [with] fans, is that they didn’t get that sense of closure that they did when you had Zero Hour or you’d get that sense of closure from Crisis. It left people wanting.”
If you really want to you can watch the whole episode of DC All Access where that quote is from here, if you really want to:
This is the same video where DiDio claimed that Convergence had been teased and seeded as early as the first year of the New 52, in a Challengers of the Unknown story DiDio wrote with artist Jerry Ordway that appeared in DC Universe Presents… #7. You can see the panel in question to the right but, honestly, even I’m calling bull on that. I think it’s way more likely it’s just a coincidence, but then again I don’t exactly have a lot of faith in DiDio.
Certainly, it seems, as Futures End leads up to it and the Convergence story involves the ‘Blood Moon’ (more details below) that this preview that appeared in ‘Channel 52’ on the 14th April 2014, before Futures End began, could actually have been the first real teaser:
What is it going to include?
From DC’s website:
Comprising a weekly comic book series with veteran TV writer Jeff King (Executive Producer of White Collar and Continuum) making his comic book debut as the lead writer on the 9-part series and 40 brand-new 2-part miniseries written and drawn by an exciting and diverse array of star talent, whose teams and titles will be announced in the coming weeks, CONVERGENCE is one of the most epic and inclusive events DC Comics has ever constructed—touching upon every facet of DC Comics’ rich publishing history.
So in April and May there will be a 9 issue weekly series called Convergence, numbering issues #0-#8, which will collect the main story. Some of the 40 two-shots books will come out each week. The first issue of each two part story will come out in April, the second in May.
What’s it about then?
Well, firstly, it’s set somewhere new, which according to DC is “outside of time and space — on the question mark, just below Earth 29 and above Chaos, on the Map of the Multiverse”
Remember this map, right?
Yep, see it there? That’s where we’ll be spending April and May apparently. Looks cosy, right?
All we know so far is that, just like Brainiac has collected civilisations in the past – think the bottle city of Kandor from Superman mythos if you know that – this is about collected universes. The story and tie-in issues will revisit universes, timeline and continuities that have been destroyed in the past but which apparently Brainiac has been saving parts of.
When DC first announced it they gave the story, for some reason, to USA Today, which is where this is from:
The alien supervillain Brainiac has trapped cities from various timelines and planets that have ended, brought them in domes to a planet outside of time and space, and is now opening them for a great experiment to see what happens when all these folks meet. …
Following in the footsteps of Brainiac is Telos, a new bad guy being introduced in Convergence. Named after the Greek philosophical term for ”end” or ”goal,” he is born of Brainiac and this mysterious planet — even taking on traits of that world — “but becomes a character unto himself,” says DiDio.
Vanishing Point is a metaphysical dimension that lies outside the normal space/time continuum. It exists during the last possible moment in the universe, the last nanosecond before entropy ends everything. At the center of Vanishing Point is a floating fortress which serves as the base of operations for the Linear Men, a group of volunteers who have taken it upon themselves to police the timestream.
Wikipedia expands on how this relates to Convergence:
[Brainiac has used Vanishing Point] to roam the history of the DC Universe. Using it to abduct heroes from different lost and defunct eras (pre-Flashpoint, pre-Zero Hour and pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths) and across the multiverse, Brainiac amasses a collection of 40 cities. Taking them to this mysterious world within domes (very much like the one that he has kept the city of Kandor from Krypton in over DC publication history) he opens them to see what happens. The ensuing chaos pits various DC heroes and villains and their historic or multiverse counterparts against each other as a villain known as Telos arises to take advantage of it all.
And finally rom DC Wikia:
Convergence is the gathering of many storylines and elements throughout the DC Universe to answer the big question: Where do worlds go when they die? … By gathering worlds from these universes, [Brainiac] creates the Blood Moon, and pits these worlds against one another to see the outcome.
So we get to see the Superman from before the New 52 reboot, Batman from the series Kingdom Come and Wonder Woman from Flashpoint etc all interacting! And more! We get characters who’ve died, stories that were never canon and more, all merged into one crazy event! How can you not be excited?! :D
As I mentioned above, you can see a list and little previews of all 40 of these tie-in, two-shots here, but here’s the full list to get you excited. Remember, even though it might look like the title of an ongoing comic – like Superman – the Superman inside will be different. For example, the solicitation for Convergence: Superman reads:
Superman and Lois deal with the impending birth of their child as he is called in to protect the city.
They’re together! She’s pregnant! OMG! :D
Anyway, here’s the list:
- Convergence: Actions Comics
- Convergence: Adventures of Superman
- Convergence: Aquaman
- Convergence: Batgirl
- Convergence: Batman and the Outsiders
- Convergence: Batman and Robin
Convergence: Batman: Shadow of the Bat
- Convergence: Blue Beetle
- Convergence: Booster Gold
- Convergence: Catwoman
- Convergence: Crime Syndicate
- Convergence: Detective Comics
- Convergence: Green Arrow
- Convergence: Green Lantern Corps
- Convergence: Green Lantern/Parallax
- Convergence: Harley Quinn
- Convergence: Hawkman
- Convergence: Infinity Inc.
- Convergence: Justice League
- Convergence: Justice League America
- Convergence: Justice League International
- Convergence: Justice Society of America
- Convergence: New Teen Titans
- Convergence: Nightwing/Oracle
- Convergence: Plastic Man and the Freedom Fighters
- Convergence: Shazam!
- Convergence: Speed Force
- Convergence: Suicide Squad
- Convergence: Superboy
- Convergence: Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes
- Convergence: Supergirl: Matrix
- Convergence: Superman
- Convergence: Superman – The Man of Steel
- Convergence: Swamp Thing
- Convergence: The Atom
- Convergence: The Flash
- Convergence: The Question
- Convergence: Titans
- Convergence: Wonder Woman
- Convergence: World’s Finest Comics
There’s so many awesome things happening – Wally West and his wife and kids, Renee Montoya as The Question, old school Justice Society – that it’s hard to talk about any without getting way too excited so I’ll leave you to look at the list yourselves. If you’ve been a fan of DC for awhile and pre-Flashpoint though I’d guarantee there’s something to excite you :)
Which ones do you recommend?
Now, I don’t normally do recommendations but was pressed on Reddit a few times so I figured I’d include this section. I mean, Marv Wolfman writing the Titans again sounds like a no brainer, and I’m personally mega-excited to see the Kingdom Come characters back. Hell, I’m excited to see the Flashpoint versions again.
Anyway, these are the ones that are really grabbing me:
- The Atom – Ray Palmer and Ryan Choi!
- Batgirl – Stephanie Brown as Batgirl!
- Nightwing/Oracle – It’s Gail Simone writing Barbara Gordon. No brainer.
- Speedforce – While I don’t mind hate new Wally West like some, I’m excited to see old Wally, Linda and the kids versus Flashpoint Wonder Woman!
- Question – Renee Montoya as the Question! Only thing better would be Vic Sage. Plus, written by Greg Rucka.
- Harley Quinn – Harley with Poison Ivy and Catwoman fighting Captain Carrot!
- Batman: Shadow of the Bat – What can I say, I’m a child of the 90s – pointy shoulder Batman and Azrael all the way
- Catwoman – Catwoman and Kingdom Come‘s Batman! :)
- Superboy – Kon-El and Kingdom Come‘s Superman! :D
- Justice League International – Blue Beetle and the JLI versus even more Kingdom Come characters!
- Green Lantern/Parallax – Hal Jordan as Parallax? Hell yeah!
- Adventures of Superman – Original Supergirl? Oh yeah!
- Swamp Thing – More Swamp Thing is always good.
- Justice League of America – Elongated Man! :D
- New Teen Titans – As I said, Marv Wolfman and “we are reminded why this is the greatest Titans team of all.”
- Justice Society of America – JSA! :D
- Infinity Inc. – I really like old JSA :P
- Crime Syndicate – I’m a sucker for classic Earth-Three, too
- Blue Beetle – More Blue Beetle and this has The Question in it too! I just hope Lobdell doesn’t Lobdell the whole thing up.
- Shazam – Captain Marvel meets Gotham by Gaslight? Sign me up!
- Plastic Man and the Freedom Fighters – Plastic Man! :D
- Booster Gold – I like Blue Beetle so of course I like Booster too
What happens afterwards?
Well, a few things. Firstly, they’re no longer going to put the words “The New 52” on every book, but this isn’t a reboot – it’s just no longer that new.
The aftermath of Convergence will see an end to The New 52 imprint, however the continuity established within the branding will continue onward in the future.
This also means we should get used to referring to this time period and version of the DC Universe as post-Flashpoint – in line with describing periods as pre and post-Crisis – instead of calling it the New 52 universe anymore.
Now, you may have heard that a whole bunch of books are ending in March? Well, following Convergence DC are shaking things up in June with a bunch of new books, new writing teams and new names and directions for existing books. You can read about a bunch of all that exciting stuff here.
After the event wraps up, beginning on June 3, 2015, the DC Comics line of comic books will consist of 24 brand-new series that will begin at issue number one. Alongside these new additions, the company will continue publishing 25 of their existing ongoing titles, all of which will maintain their current numbering and storylines.
So, what does that actually mean? Well, I’m going to break it down for you here!
Naturally, Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman are staying around but here’s the complete list. You can see the artists attached and read more at DC’s blog post about it here.
- Action Comics
- Detective Comics
- The Flash
- Gotham Academy
- Gotham By Midnight
- Green Arrow
- Green Lantern
- Harley Quinn
- Justice League
- Justice League United
- Secret Six
- New Suicide Squad
- Superman/Wonder Woman
- Teen Titans
- Wonder Woman
There’s lots to be really excited about here! Some of these are just miniseries – like Bat-Mite and Bizarro – but there’s also a lot of really exciting talent attached. There’s more info on creative teams attached on the DC blog and a good write up about it, with lots of the released promo images, here.
- Batman Beyond
- Black Canary
- Dr. Fate
- Harley Quinn/Power Girl
- Justice League of America
- Martian Manhunter
- Mystic U
- Omega Men
- Robin, Son of Batman
- Section Eight
- We Are Robin
Reports indicate that the following are having their name changed but it seems likely the numbering will continue between them. Justice League Dark for example is now named in line with the upcoming film.
- Constantine -> Constantine: The Hellblazer
- Justice League Dark -> Dark Universe
- Green Lantern Corps -> Green Lantern: Lost Army
- Earth 2 -> Earth 2: Society
- Justice League 3000 -> Justice League 3001
- Red Hood and the Outlaws -> Red Hood/Arsenal
The following series, along with all three current weekly books, are cancelled for the foreseeable future:
- Aquaman and the Others
- Infinity Man and the Forever People
- Secret Origins
- Star-Spangled War Stories Featuring G.I. Zombie
- Trinity of Sin
- Worlds’ Finest
- Arkham Manor
- Batman and Robin (although Damian is getting his own book)
- Green Lantern: New Guardians
- Red Lanterns
- Swamp Thing
So yeah, lots of shake up! In fact, Dan DiDio had this to say about it:
After the announcement of the overhaul of DC Comic’s publishing line, Dan DiDio compared the company’s plans for post-Convergence stories to Infinite Crisis. In a Facebook post, he stated that “[i]n terms of expectations and challenges, the lessons learned in the ‘One Year Later jump’ were applied to insure our June series (hopefully) don’t experience some of the same pitfalls.”
It’s meant to be a new diverse – in both creative teams and characters and types of teams – lineup from DC and if nothing else it should be really interesting to see it all play out!
Hope that helps! I’m happy to answer any further questions you have :)