What Have I Wrought

In response to my recent post about Lois Lane's dentition and its implications for the larger DCU, extremely funny commenter damanoid had this to say:

Oh for god’s sake man, do you realize what you’ve done?! This could take YEARS to sort out!

First there’ll need to be a Dentistry Crisis, to explain that Lois Lane had her memories erased to cover up the fact that she was raped while under anesthesia.

Then you’ll have Infinite Caries, a massive crossover event in which an earlier version of Lois, with perfect teeth, attempts to ‘bite through history’ to ensure that her alternate self’s tooth decay never occurs– which alters the dental history of the entire DC universe!

That leads into “One Regularly Scheduled Appointment Later,” which reveals how everyone’s life has been changed by their gleaming new smiles, followed by “32,” a series that explores how each tooth in Lois’ mouth has been affected by these changes.

After that of course is “Blackest Teeth,” in which Lois’ missing tooth returns as a zombified fang bent on destroying all teeth everywhere, followed by “Brightest Smile,” in which all of Lois’ teeth change color and get superpowers, or something.

Not that it matters! Because right after that is “FlossPoint,” another massive crossover which explores the premise of what would have happened if Lois had lost a DIFFERENT tooth. This will result in another reboot, and an entirely new continuity that starts out before Lois had lost her tooth to begin with.

Once all that is out of the way, though, they’ll finally be able to move on to the good stories and solid writing we’ve been waiting for. It’ll be the perfect jumping-on point for new readers! Yes indeed, no doubt about it at all. Blue skies ahead, my friends; nothing but blue skies.

In addition to unleashing a much denser agglomeration of tooth/comic jokes than I'd ever imagined possible, damanoid is of course pointing out the fact that bad comics trends propagate just as readily as good ones. This is sadly true, though I hold hope in my heart that the continuity-heavy title-wide crossover will soon go the way of the foil-embossed cover.


Lois Lane is Missing a Tooth, OR, Rappin' About Reboots With Uncle Johnathan

The other day, I was reading some Silver Age comics (natch) and I came across this plot point in Lois Lane No.50, from July 1964.


At first I was going to merely point this out and mention that from my experience with people of the generation that Lois would have been sliding through at the time, she almost certainly didn't get any sort of replacement; that right up until the original Crisis Lois Lane was missing a molar. How very strange by today's standards! How uncomfortable that would make some people feel!

And then the next day I heard about the Great Upcoming DC Reboot and the surrounding kerfuffle and the two got a bit muddled together in my head, such that when I got distracted by the new puppy and such I kept mulling it over and turning it around, and I came to this conclusion: Lois Lane's missing tooth means that reboots don't matter.

Think about it: by the strict rules of the ContinuiNerd, that tooth was gone up until the Crisis, but realistically it was probably forgotten by the end of the issue. The extraction, after all, existed solely as a means for Lois to learn about laughing gas (so that when she went back in time later on she could use some to try to disrupt Superboy and Lana Lang's first kiss - SILVER AGE!). But it happened, right? Theoretically, it should occupy as valid a space in the canon as Brave and the Bold No. 54, which came out the same month and featured the first teamup of Robin, Aqualad and Kid Flash in what would become the Teen Titans.

The obvious difference, of course, is that the tooth doesn't matter and that its absence isn't really interesting, whereas the concept of teen sidekicks getting together to fight crime does. If Lois had had her tooth replaced by a cunning fake that contained a Superman signal device or a piece of emergency kryptonite or something then it might have cropped up a few more times during the Silver Age, and had an appearance in All-Star Superman, and maybe Flashpoint Lois would have a secret spy tooth that shoots lasers or contains an emergency raft or has the Atom hiding inside.

Over time (and given good writing, of course), the fun, interesting, compelling stuff will keep coming back, while the drek and garbage and redundancies will fade away or be changed for the better: Krypto the Superdog will always come back, but Comet the Superhorse never will. Jimmy Olsen will never die but if we ever see the Blood Pack again it will be because someone has made something interesting of them.

Lois Lane is missing a tooth; Lois Lane is not missing a tooth.

It doesn't matter if Lois Lane is missing a tooth. Unless it makes for a good story, of course.