The DC Universe isn't just evolving on the big screen; the comic book universe itself is also undergoing a radical face-lift this summer with the company's upcoming "Rebirth" campaign.
Here's the question making its way around comic message boards, though: just what is DC's Rebirth? Just a mere five years after the launch of The New 52 reboot, could the publisher be undergoing yet another reboot? Not necessarily; in fact, DC's CCO Geoff Johns has gone on the record to state "It's not a reboot … and it never was."
So it's not a reboot, but it has to be something significant, right? Only a couple years after The New 52 launched, DC introduced DC You, which was a soft makeover for its fledgling reboot that failed to get the audience the company was hoping for. That campaign probably wasn't significant enough to really reach audiences, so expect Rebirth to be somewhere between New 52 and DC You.
Maybe Rebirth is more in line with a Marvel NOW type of makeover, meaning new costumes, new creators and a roster that is both more diverse and consistent with the new cinematic and television universes.
We'll know more when all is announced tomorrow at WonderCon, but until then let's look at the Rebirth teasers that the company has dropped recently.
— DC Comics (@DCComics) March 23, 2016
This one is pretty self-explanatory: Harley Quinn will play a major role in Rebirth. She's probably the company's most popular female character outside of Wonder Woman, she moves a metric ton of merchandise and, oh yeah, she happens to be the star of the Suicide Squad movie.
The fact that Killer Croc is standing next to her really (un)subtly drives the point home that DC is looking to mesh its movie and comic book worlds in an effort to achieve my favorite word in the world: synergy.
Tune in 3/26 at 9:30am PT, https://t.co/3zLPZT7hlv. #DCRebirth pic.twitter.com/o8m8LVN5dR — DC Comics (@DCComics) March 23, 2016
This teaser focuses on Jessica Cruz, aka Power Ring, aka the evil Green Lantern from Earth-3. With the Green Lantern universe looking to expand beyond Hal Jordan, and as the company tries to diversify its superhero lineup in general, I could see Power Ring playing a big role in the company's future.
The trend with Rebirth so far seems to be just that — a new beginning for these classic characters. They're the icons we remember, but with new blood under the hood.
— DC Comics (@DCComics) March 24, 2016
Speaking of new blood, this final teaser shows off Damian Wayne and Superboy. Again, these are the same franchises we know, but with younger, more diverse characters taking the reins.
It's entirely too soon after The New 52 to throw all new backstories and continuity at us, but these teasers seem to indicate there will be a companywide fresh coat of paint when Rebirth officially launches in June.
We won't know for sure until DC makes its official announcement tomorrow, but expect new creative teams, dozens of books to be canceled, dozens of books to debut and iconic characters to start new chapters in their lives. Well, until DC decides to do this all over again in a few years.