At midnight the DCU continuity changes forever. And when it does we will say goodbye to some things and will welcome some new things. For many people, myself included, it’s hard. Characters we have known, loved and enjoyed for a long time will not be part of the DCU moving forward. And, yes, they are just printed images on a page, but it is a tribute to the writers and artists and DC Comics that they became more.
When my kids were very small I would put them to bed at night to Margaret Wise Brown’s “Good Night Moon” - you may have done that too or you may remember a parent reading it to you. You can hear Susan Sarandon read it here.
I know some people don’t like it. And certainly, the recent parody by Adam Manspach, read by Samuel Jackson, more closely reflects the choatic bed time of pre-schoolers. But I always found the book comforting and relished the moment of repeating, “good night noises, everywhere” as a close to the day.
Saying good night is, in a way, saying goodbye. When night falls, we bid farewell to the things we love.
In the final pages of Neil Gaiman’s goodbye to Batman, “Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader”, his mother helps Bruce say goodbye to his friends and family, by reading from a version of the “goodnight book”.
And like Bruce did in that story, many of us will say “good night” to many things we have had great affection for in this DCU:
Goodnight, Conner Hawke
Goodnight, Donna Troy
Goodnight to Lian, daughter of Roy
Goodnight to Barbara Gordon, Oracle edition
Goodnight to the New Teen Titans and all of their missions
Goodnight Mr. & Mrs. Kent, Goodnight Mr. & Mrs. West
Goodnight and farewell to all of the rest.
But for every “good night”, there is, usually, a “good morning.”
Just as Gaiman ended his story, we will begin anew.
Soon there will be new stories and new characters in a new DC that we may learn to love like the things we bid farewell to.
I will miss many, many things that brought me joy; I look forward to many new things that may do the same.