The trade paperback to the massive Elseworlds story Kingdom Come, complete with some extra pages and an epilogue, came out in 1997. It’s twenty years later, so the Guy Geeks (Jenny was unable to join in) had a chat about the original book, its influences, where it sits for them amongst trade paperbacks, and what Watson thinks is wrong with comics today in this freewheeling chat. Enjoy!
tomk: So, to start off the chat since we always need to start somewhere: do you guys, like me, see this as a bookend for Marvels for Alex Ross?
watson: I like Marvels just fine, but it is nowhere near the magnitude of Kingdom Come.
tomk: No, it isn’t. But Marvels is about the beginning of a superhero universe. KC could be the end of one.
watson: Marvels is pretty. Kingdom Come is an epic, all-time.
tomk: Marvels can be a dry run in certain respects, and it’s more “man on the street” than KC.
watson: I never saw a thematic connection. Just the same artist.
tomk: No one asks Phil Sheldon to save the day.
jimmy: Marvels is also just a retelling of the Marvel Universe, not an original story…for the most part.
watson: Depends on whose side you take on who really wrote them. Was it Busiek and Wade as credited it was it the All Mighty Alex Ross™
Kingdom Come wasn’t terribly original if you ask Alan Moore fans.
jimmy: No, but it wasn’t segments of the DC universe just redrawn by Ross with a new narrator.
tomk: Having read the Alan Moore proposal for Twilight of the Superheroes, I’d say the connections between the two works are only superficial.
And both works had the distinctive voices of Busiek and Waid. What little I’ve read of Ross working without those guys (Earth X trilogy) suggests he ain’t that good.
jimmy: Writing anyway.
tomk: True. I don’t want Busiek or Waid to draw the books either.
watson: Yeah. His later works where either he writes or he gets an old high school buddy as the plotter suggests that he REALLY needs a top notch writer. Justice was dreadful.
I thought it was very similar in tone and primary elements of the plot to Twilight; especially the Superman/Captain Marvel stand-off.
tomk: Oh yes, but the world isn’t a complete apocalyptic wasteland. Plus, the ending is hopeful, not a downer with everyone dead. KC has a true DC ending where the innate goodness of its heroes wins out and shows them as much moral people as superhumans.
watson: Yeah. It IS a little watered down, Tom! That’s true!
Watson and I agree.
That means Jenny is wrong or something, right?
tomk: Well, in that case, if we’re talking bookends, and I am at least, the story opens with the Sandman and in the Planet Krypton epilogue, his costume and weapons are on the last page among the brick-a-brac.
I just love KC‘s details.
jimmy: What did you think of the epilogue? It’s a nice little addendum here for the trade edition, but I think it would have been a bit much if it had been included in the original release. And you thought the ending was watered down before?
watson: I didn’t need it. It was kind of like Lord of The Rings. My god, man. How many happy endings do you need?
tomk: You keep saying “watered down”. Did you want Supermen to go on a murderous rampage?
Though I don’t mind the epilogue. The added pages showing Superman’s trip to Apokalips seems way more extraneous and tacked on to me.
jimmy: I was wondering what other pages were new. That scene in particular felt very out of place.
tomk: I remember reading the original. It worked fine without Apokalips.
jimmy: Do you know if the new pages were sections that were excised from the original script or completely new after the fact? I would guess the epilogue was new, but this feels like it might have been a “deleted scene”.
tomk: I actually don’t know in this case.
The extra pages were a selling point for the trade.
watson: The Apokolips pages were very redundant to the Aquaman scene.
tomk: And the Aquaman scene worked better. We didn’t need to see Superman pick up Mr. Miracle.
jimmy: Agreed on both points.
tomk: At least Aquaman’s scene gave some insight on Wonder Woman and set up further drama down the road. All the Apokalips scene does is have Superman tell Orion (who doesn’t come back later) that he’s disappointing and Orion suggest all men become their fathers.
jimmy: Speaking of not coming back, I was surprised Magog’s role was so small.
tomk: Magog, I think, is an interesting character. Besides the fact DC tried to make a version of him for the JSA later on, he’s the one anti-hero who shows remorse and wants to change. That Magog wanting punishment pushes Superman into a war footing is a little strange given how much other metahumans are actively fighting them. Magog spouts off and basically asks to be punished, and when we see him in the future, he’s either really down, or he’s upbraiding another meta for showing disrespect.
jimmy: Speaking of, this is awesome: That’s a character that Mark Waid invented that was really just put to me like come up with the most God awful, Rob Liefeld sort of design that you can. What I was stealing from was — really only two key designs of Rob’s — the design of Cable. I hated it. I felt like it looked like they just threw up everything on the character — the scars, the thing going on with his eye, the arm, and what’s with all the guns? But the thing is, when I put those elements together with the helmet of Shatterstar — I think that was his name — well, the ram horns and the gold, suddenly it held together as one of the designs that I felt happiest with in the entire series.
tomk: Yeah, for a series that was, in large part, a criticism of 90s anti-heroes, the design for Magog with the strong X-Force influence works very well. He looks like an anti-hero, but there is still more aesthetic beauty to Magog than either Cable or Shatterstar (yes, that’s his name, I should do a Misplaced Hero file on the guy) had at that time.
jimmy: You better do it fast; he just reappeared as part of Cable’s New New Mutants.
tomk: He never really went away to a certain degree.
And neither has Liefeld. Unfortunately.
tomk: We can debate Shatterstar later. This is the KC thread. And hey, Magog has a Biblical name that ties the series back to the apocalyptic stuff from the Bible they keep quoting.
jimmy: But Ross is very opinionated on 90’s characters and anti-heroes in general. Part of his reasoning for not doing a follow up to Marvels was that he would have to draw the likes of Wolverine and Punisher.
And yes, a knowledge of Revelations seems like it would be good to have prior to reading.
watson: The biblical angle/angel really worked here. Spectre and the agnostic minister as framing devices landed even better than the photographer from Marvels.
tomk: Ross is very opinionated period. There are hardly any 90s era DC characters in the entire book. There’s only one Robin. No Oan Green Lanterns because apparently Ross refused to ever paint Kyle Rayner. No Superboy. No Impulse.
jimmy: I like when Flash pulls him into reality as well.
tomk: There’s the Ray, in his dad’s old costume making him a legacy (those are apparently OK), and Steel appears in the background among Batman’s people.
watson: The Revelations foreshadowing (beautiful pages) really set the tone.
tomk: But the Revelations stuff, as Watson noted, is beautifully realized.
watson: The most powerful was at the end of page one when Superman first returns. It looks like everything is ok (Superman will take care of it!) but Norman has his vision and we know this is the beginning of a bad period.
jimmy: His design of Robin would go on the inspire the look of future Robins in regular continuity. (edited)
tomk: Many of Ross’ designs worked there way into regular continuity over time. There was even a very brief phase when Captain Atom gained the red striped thing.
watson: I remember thinking of the “this is only the beginning” scenes when we were all celebrating the US capturing Baghdad so soon after the Iraq War began. Literally thought of KC.
tomk: But yes, that is a powerful page. And then Bruce notes the black around the S-shield which was a nod to the Fleischer brothers’ cartoons from the 40s.
watson: Kingdom Come changed a LOT of the design schemes (and even the characters themselves) on a permanent basis.
tomk: Has any single DC book or mini-series, other than the original Crisis, done that much?
watson: No. And the funny thing is, it was an Elseworlds! Wasn’t supposed to have bleed over.
Why the heck haven’t they made a DC Animated film about this property!?!?
tomk: It was a super-popular Elseworlds we’re still talking about 20 years later.
Good question. Maybe because they try to copy the artistic style on a lot of those.
watson: I’d LOVE to see their animation adaptation of Ross!
tomk: They might need to go Rotoscope style or something. It might be well above the budget of those things.
But if they do, I’d love them to get the voice cast from Justice League for it.
watson: Would you say the character interpretation most impacted from KC was Wonder Woman? From then on, she was portrayed as a grim knight.
tomk: Well, Batman comes across as a smartass, so he certainly wasn’t changed.
watson: Gadot’s take will change her in comics I’m sure (a little more humanity) but for 20 years …
tomk: But the general dichotomy of Wonder Woman as the warrior for peace did seem to come out more often. She is more likely to use lethal force than the other two.
watson: Batman is the Tom of superheroes!
tomk: Must be why I loved that Batman so much.
Though I think Greg Rucka’s version of Wonder Woman had a great influence on Gadot’s version.
watson: One of my favorite moments is when the heroes realize Batson has grown up to look like Captian Marvel but is not in power up mode.
tomk: That was awesome.
watson: Oliver Queen: “You mean I’ve been afraid of BILLY BATSON all this time!?!”
With all the rich villainy on display, do you regret the Joker had already died in the past?
His death serves a critical purpose, and was the exact character it should have been, but it cost us future Joker scenes.
tomk: You know, I didn’t mind, because if there was one bad guy that the public wouldn’t mind a hero killing, it would be the Joker.
Besides, he kinda looked like Jack Nicholson.
watson: It was a Jack Joker. I’ll bet Ross thinks Ledger Joker is too modern. That’s the way he rolls.
He probably also hates the Leto Joker, but well….a stopped clock is right twice a day….
Ever notice that the era that Ross thinks is the only one “acceptable” is the one HE grew up with. Change is ok (Barry replacing Jay) as long as the change happened before Ross noticed.
It IS a testament to Jack that Ross was inspired by something that was less than a decade old at the time.
tomk: I’ve seen that with a lot of people. It reminds me of when Brad Meltzer took over the Justice League and basically decided the Martian Manhunter had to go despite the character being a Leaguer for 20 years because he wasn’t part of Meltzer’s childhood dream team.
jimmy: Ross also paints from real life, so a Nicholson inspired Joker would be a good model for what he should look like. Ceaser Romero probably wasn’t it. To this day Ross still pretty much draws Joker with a Nicholson influence.
tomk: Besides, I think he put Helen Slater and Dean Cain into the epilogue.
jimmy: Oh? Let’s recheck…
The Super servers at the restaurant?
tomk: Yes. The man looks a lot like Cain, and I think the Supergirl in the background is deliberate.
watson: Heh. I never noticed that.
Is that an homage or a swipe at them???
tomk: Most likely a homage. Dean Cain might have been playing Superman at the time or close to it. The Slater thing I think I learned from an issue of Wizard that explained all the Easter Eggs, like how the Beatles, Monkees, and Steve Miller are all superheroes at different points.
watson: As for Meltzer, he’s in the Alex Ross/Geoff Johns Silver Age fan wank that killed DC Comics for me. The fanboys took over and made it 1981 all over again.
They put comics in a mode where it couldn’t evolve; which is funny because KC felt game changing yet led to such much Silver Age regression. It’s like they put it on a treadmill so it couldn’t go anywhere but where they wanted it to be.
It was the Cosmic Treadmill naturally and only Barry Allen could use that!
jimmy: Stepping back to a point that was made while I was gone doing something super cool I’m sure, Kingdom Come was released in 1996. In late 1995 Wonder Woman kills Max Lord as part of the events connected to Infinite Crisis. So her using lethal force for the greater good had been recently established.
watson: Infinite Crisis came out in 2005.
You didn’t carry the one.
jimmy: Damn exchange rate.
watson: In Canada, Watchmen came out in 2011.
jimmy: So, reverse my statement and KC influenced IC. Sigh.
I knew that date felt wrong as IC was one of the things that got me back into comics after a long time off, and Kingdom Come was long before that.
Anyway, speaking of things that got me back into comics, there were a lot of aspects of this that also reminded me of Civil War.
tomk: Yes, except KC was good.
The heroes attempting to take down a villain and causing a huge catastrophe. The establishing of the meta human prison. Technically hero vs hero, etc.
watson: Heroes fighting each other and then realizing who the real villains are is kind of a core trope of comics. What made this one different is that the heroes largely foiled the villainous scheme, and THEN killed each other.
tomk: Or, as Norman McCay points out, there are no villains in the end for the Spectre to punish.
watson: It’s funny. Looking back at my anti-Ross comments, you’d think I hated KC. But to be clear, I love it. It’s in my top five trades of all time.
tomk: You can love the art and hate the artist.
jimmy: Ryan can’t, but others can.
watson: That was a GREAT line in KC. In fact, the Norman/Spectre relationship was pretty expository until then.
So true on Ryan. So true.
tomk: That’s, like, one of the things that grad school taught me: separating the art from the artist. If you seriously look into just about any highly creative person, you’re liable to find a person with some, shall we say, eccentricities.
I mean, one of my favorite movies is Chinatown, but that doesn’t mean Roman Polanski shouldn’t be in prison.
watson: I think it is harder for contemporary artists. Their horrible behavior is having impact NOW. See Card, Orson Scott.
tomk: I do have my limits. I don’t think I’ll be seeing a new Mel Gibson movie anytime soon.
watson: (Which was so bad that Ryan refused to see a really good Harrison Ford sci-fi adaptation of one of his favorite books).
tomk: But just about any poetry anthology will include Ezra Pound, and that guy was a fascist.
jimmy: Like I was listening to the Top 40 yesterday because the Ms likes it and not me, and they were praising someone for getting off heroin and being sober for 5 years. And sure, good for them, or they could have, I dunno, not become heroin addicts?
watson: Me either but that’s because his presence is so overwhelmingly awful, it would distract me.
tomk: The big thing is now we have better access on finding out what sorts of horrible people creative types are.
watson: Jimmy is as militant as Ryan apparently.
tomk: So, you have Alex Ross, for example, able to pontificate on the Internet. But it’s not like we know, say, the political opinions of Bill Finger.
jimmy: No, I hate the music because it is crap. 🙂
tomk: Speaking of Ryan, is he joining us?
watson: That’s a view of music I can support Jimmy.
ryan: Yes, but I’m not done reading. You said early next week and you [f-bomb users] all jumped the gun.
watson: I think Ryan may be confused and thinking we are talking about this in ten years.
jimmy: We’re not busy moving to Awesome Town USA.
watson: The book has been out 20 years and I’ve read it a thousand times. I haven’t even read it yet either but here we are.
tomk: Man, I just know I’ll be editing this part out of the transcript…
watson: No! No editing history, Tom!!! [editor’s note: OK, Watson.]
Especially Jimmy’s recitation of the drug habits of [Watson uses a naughty word] musicians.
tomk: I may just drop the profanity.
watson: Now I am going to include profanity throughout the rest of the chat. [Watson swears a lot and embarrasses his mother.]
tomk: I’m up for a challenge.
So, in the spirit of all this [insert naughty word of your choice], I would actually suggest the best DC stories are the ones that reference the company’s long history.
jimmy: Such as…
watson: Not reference but embrace. When they reference it you get cluster (Tom has censored the chat)s like Infinite Crisis and Crisis 2: Electric Boogaloo!
tomk: The original Crisis is the only big crossover event that said it would change everything and feature a huge cast…and it did.
watson: And the Metlzer crowd has been trying to undo it ever since.
tomk: Maybe one of the biggest Silver Age JLA stories was the Crisis on Earth-2, which established the forgotten heroes of the 40s would make a visit once a year.
watson: By making Events not about a story but about continuity itself.
jimmy: Watson, you should come back to comics now, they retconned out all the Crisis events. Of course, you’d have to deal with the DCU crossing over with Watchmen…
watson: I think it’s worse now because of it. I loved the Crisis because it wiped out all the crap and let them restart. I’m ok with a Crisis every generation as long as they use it to go clean start. Instead, they now use them for navel gazing and talking about what actually happened and why. The death of comics as an important medium was one generation refused to hand it off to the next generation in the late 90s.
jimmy: No one cares about making comics anymore. It’s all about who can generate the most buzz when they announce or leak something to the press ahead of time.
tomk: That or they’re just R&D for a movie division.
watson: Yeah. For years DC Comics was literally under WB’s R&D section on their financial disclosures.
tomk: Are they still? I mean, they moved the headquarters out to LA for a reason.
But on the subject of Events, the original Crisis was (like the Dark Phoenix Saga) never really intended to be as big as it turned out to be. But look what came after it. You had Byrne on Man of Steel, Miller on Year One, Perez on Wonder Woman, Mike Grell revamping Green Arrow into a mature readers book, the funny version of the Justice League, and the Suicide Squad.
jimmy: Hard to complain about the results.
tomk: The mid 80s were a good time for DC creatively, and that’s not even getting into how Perez and Wolfman still had the bestselling book at the time in The New Teen Titans.
watson: Yeah. That’s why it might be unfair for me to be TOO critical of The Fanboys undoing the post-Crisis work. I’m probably mad at them for undoing MY nostalgic era.
Though it is weird because most of those guys are my age…
A few years older. An important few years I guess because the Satellite League ain’t my Justice League squad.
Unless they are fighting to the death!
Back to the comic itself, why about the brilliant crowd scenes (battles and the hero bar especially). Very much inspired by Perez but painting with such detail.
tomk: That Ross could give so many distinct faces in the crowd is another testament to his talent.
watson: He’s amazing. I just wish his ego would allow him to work collaboratively with the best writers in the business.
The bit that stands it for me is when someone is shaking hands with the Human Bomb and he blows his hand off. The joy on the Creeper’s face at what is really an awful moment is classic.
By the way, if I ever visited Sandman’s Library of Dreams, I’m headed straight to the joint work of Alan Moore and Alex Ross.
tomk: By the by, the guy pulling the Human Bomb’s finger is 70s rocker Steve Miller as taken from one of his album covers.
So, another fine detail.
watson: That’s right!
tomk: If we want to talk details, I have a couple. There’s a panel just after Billy Batson has changed into Captain Marvel and flown off where Norman and the Spectre disappear through a wall, but one of Batman’s people, Zatara, can see them because he knows magic. There’s another where, just before the bomb hits, we see Mr. Miracle and his family escaping in a boom tube.
watson: Have we ever seen Americommando and Trump in the same room???
tomk: No, but I haven’t seen him with these guys either.
jimmy: I thought Trump was Superman now?
tomk: I don’t think that’s a real Time cover.
jimmy: Or a real super hero.
watson: Like…why does he have a beard in the photo? Neither he nor Superman has a beard.
tomk: I think it’s best not to ponder that one too hard.
ryan: Okay finished my reread. A few thoughts:
1. Under The Hood by Hollis Mason is on page 8. Was this the first time Watchmen crossed over with main DC universe, even as an Elseworlds?
2. I was struck by the similarities to Civil War just like Jimmy. How the two universes developed a big event like that is interesting to compare.
3. Was the framing device intended to be a criticism of religion? Yes it was a narrative excuse but ultimately it was abandoned. Norman and Spectre do not make the final decision, Superman/Billy make the decision. So it wasn’t needed, and it’s not like comic books ever need an excuse to jump between scenes or have an omnipresent narrator. But we do have a lot of discussion about the superheroes as gods and finally rejoining the world of men. Which seems odd when we’re following a narrator who is a priest and attached to an agent of God. Why does the priest yell at Spectre to get involved but never escalate things to his manager?
jimmy: I noticed the Under The Hood book as well. I’m thinking it isn’t the first crossover, but having trouble finding others as the interwebs are flooded with current Rebirth stuff.
tomk: I never saw it as a criticism of religion. Norman uses religion as a framework to understand what is happening and uses his knowledge of the Bible and calling to calm the enraged Superman. The whole story is about regaining hope and optimism Plus, the bomb’s mushroom cloud is deliberately cross-shaped and the Christian religion is about a god becoming man which suggests both Billy Batson and Superman when he puts on the glasses and smiles for what I think is the first time in the whole story.
watson: Damn this book is great!
jimmy: It definitely holds up.
watson: I think the religious angle is more a critique of mankind itself.
Plays on the same themes that the Wonder Woman film hits.
ryan: It’s an interesting theme, but to me it felt so cobbled on that I wondered why it became the guiding narrative. Yes, religious themes are a rich area to mine for extra meaning, but here it was largely unused. Except for Norman’s speech at the UN in the end, he’s a completely unused character. The earlier incident where Flash pulls him out of his ghost zone is completely forgotten–otherwise wouldn’t it have been helpful to maybe have a chat with the guy who just predicted some bad stuff was about to go down?
And that last speech could have been given by Diana or Bruce or Magog or any number of characters. It didn’t need to be Norman. That part of the story and the explored themes felt underserved, and I find that fascinating amidst a narrative of being abandoned by a higher power.
Why does Norman want to get the superheroes involved when he is confronted with tangible proof of God’s existence in the form of Spectre? Why petition the capes when he could try to persuade God instead? That never even comes up.
jimmy: Leave it to Ryan to screw up a conversation about a perfectly serviceable wagon story.
ryan: Wagon story? Haven’t heard that before.
jimmy: Tom will get it.
ryan: Oh is it a Simpsons thing?
jimmy: Isn’t everything?
watson: Paint Your Wagon!
tomk: The speech has to come from Norman. He’s Dante traveling through the underworld with Virgil in The Inferno. The speech needs to be from an ordinary man reaching out to a god, and that’s Norman’s whole life. Even Batman can’t make the same speech with the same impact as the humble, god-fearing pastor.
watson: I disagree with Ryan (I should have a quick key for that sentence). Norman’s lack of faith in god and his use of the book of Revelations in his early sermon (powerful scene when he betrays his dwindling flock and then won’t make eye contact with him) and his fixation on end of days is a parallel to the shift from the era of Superman to Magog.
Probably also a reflection on the state of comics at the time; a shift from Waid/Ross’s beloved Silver Age to the Image/grim and gritty era in which KC was published.
tomk: But at the end, Norman’s congregation is much bigger, and he’s in a better place as well. He was healed along with the rest of the world.
watson: Revelations is a fairly controversial book in the Christian Faith. It is dark and awful; a contrast to the “light of the world” messages in the beginning of the New Testament. I would say it’s almost LIKE the Alpha and Omega…but that’s literally where the phrase originated.
Agree on the crowd Tom. That was all the happy ending we needed because it showed peace is better than Rob Liefeld.
Didn’t need to add an epilogue in Planet Hollywood.
tomk: The crowd included Jim Corrigan, and the Spectre had a pretty damn good series of his own at that time. Oh, and Siegel and Shuster are sitting behind him.
So, Norman helped Corrigan as much as he helped Superman.
watson: Yeah. I noticed Corrigan too. There was definitely some pulling him back to a bit of humanity.
Want to know a movie that should be made in the horror genre before New Mutants? Spectre!
tomk: No arguments here. One of my favorite series was that character’s run in the 90s.
ryan: The Dark League film was already killed…
Or was it (spooky music)?
watson: I wouldn’t even want it to be DCEU. Stand alone creepiness. Like Corrigan doesn’t WANT to be Spectre and is fighting it. The horror of the judgements plus the horror of not wanting to do it. Jekyll and Hide
tomk: Except the character arc for that great 90s series was Corrigan realizing he didn’t want it and learning about forgiveness.
watson: We can work that into this “Pitch Please”…
ryan: It’s not that the Norman/Spectre line didn’t work, it was just so glaringly un-self-aware that I wondered if it was intentional. A greater power for good is absent from the world of man when it could be doing something…and not once is that turned to God. Heck, even Norman uses the line on Spectre about “If you know evil will be done and you do nothing then you’re responsible.” It just seems odd that a pastor wouldn’t turn that a level higher when talking to an actual angel.
jimmy: Maybe God is in a jazz club in New Orleans?
ryan: Or playing skeeball in New Jersey.
But what if God was one of us? Just a slob like Watson?
watson: I am not sure Norman doesn’t think Spectre is really God.
ryan: That would be strange. Spectre says he works for God and Deadman says Spectre is “an angel of death.”
Norman believes Deadman too since that conversation leads to Norman asking Spectre to get back in touch with his humanity.
watson: Yeah. Because people react rationally when encountering the divine. More likely he thought he was losing his mind!
It’s as confusing as the concept of the Trinity. Christians are still debating whether Jesus god, his son, or sort of vassal.
Throw Spectre and Deadman into it and you have some ambiguity!
jimmy: The concept of the Trinity isn’t hard. It’s Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman.
ryan: And not Aquaman’s trident.
watson: All right. All right. We go further down this path, we’ll be debating how many Angels can dance on the tip of a needle. And Angel is X-Men, not DC. So let’s wrap up.
Does anyone NOT give this Ten “Prisons Modeled after the Legion of Doom HQ/ UN HQ modeled after the Hall of Justices” out of 10?
Probably a better question is where does this rank in the all-time TPBs?
ryan: I put it somewhere in the 3-5 range. Under Watchmen and DKR for sure, but definitely can make a case for #3.
And I would give it 9 Green Lantern went all Game of Thrones out of 10.
tomk: I think it’s aged better than DKR, but DKR is more of a milestone. And yes, 10 out of 10 Easter eggs.
jimmy: I give it 10, but below Watchmen and DKR.
watson: Total ten. Dark Knight Returns is not even in my top 25 so KC is probably number three behind Watchmen and maybe the collected two issue arc of Moore’s Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow. The last book of the Silver Age, ironically.
And much as the Silver Age should have ended, so should this chat.
tomk: Yeah, well, wait until this whole chat is revived by Clayton and Besher…