It's not a trick.
It's not clones.
Blue Beetle and Booster Gold are coming to Justice League 3000, the ongoing DC comic written by J.M. DeMatteis and Keith Giffen.
The appearance begins with December's Justice League 3000 #12, drawn by the series' regular artist, Howard Porter.
And to be clear — these are not the Beetle and Booster from the New 52 universe, and they don't visit Justice League 3000 from a different Earth.
This is Ted Kord and Michael Jon Carter, the "Blue and the Gold"...
… on their own Earth,
Maybe this will help: It turns out that Justice League 3000 takes place in the future of a pre-New 52 world.
Yep, you were reading it all along.
The premise of Justice League 3000 (since it launched earlier this year) is that a scientist in the year 3000 discovers a way to recreate the heroes of the past. They're not clones, but are instead parasites (read the comic for clarification on that one), and even though they have the DNA of their past counterparts, their personalities are evolving in a little different (and often hilarious) direction.
The team, which has really started to bond in recent issues, is currently made up of a new female Flash, who's learning to use her powers; Bruce Wayne Batman, who never experienced his parents dying (so is finding a new motivation to be a hero); Wonder Woman, who's got her warrior Amazon DNA without ever learning to restrain it; Clark Kent Superman, who's becoming a hero (and has a crush on the new female Flash); Green Lantern, who creates amazing constructs, but has been shrunk to about six inches tall and rides around in the pocket of his cloak; and Firestorm, who's turning out to be the rebel of the group.
And now the team's getting two new members: Blue Beetle and Booster Gold, who will bring a 20th Century perspective on this 31st Century group. Newsarama talked to Giffen to find out more about the revelation.
Newsarama: Keith, we've been hearing that issue #12 has some new characters that people should be happy to see. And now that issue #12 is about to be solicited, are you ready to reveal who's coming to Justice League 3000?
Keith Giffen: Yes! Booster Gold and Blue Beetle are coming to Justice League 3000, as of issue #12.
I'm not going to keep this a secret anymore. I mean, if Beetle and Booster are coming back, we should scream it from the rooftops, right? Maybe more people will buy it who are Beetle and Booster fans, and not be surprised and miss the issue. So I'm not really big on hiding stuff anymore.
Nrama: Now wait a minute, which Blue Beetle and Booster Gold are these?
Giffen: They're J.M. DeMatteis and my Blue Beetle and Booster Gold.
Our Blue Beetle never got shot in the head. He never split from Booster Gold.
The last memories these two clowns have is that Max was mad at them. Then they woke up in a refrigerator on Takron-Galtos. It's our Justice League.
Nrama: So are they parasites, like the other Justice League 3000 members?
Giffen: No, no. It's Beetle and Booster. This is them. Basically, a cryogenic chamber is found on Takron-Galtos while they're excavating, and inside are Beetle and Booster. It's Ted and Michael. It's really, really them. It's not clones. It's not the parasite thing.
It's not a trick. It's not an imaginary story.
Nrama: But… those characters are from before the New 52 reboot.
Giffen: That's right. So what does that have to say about what universe Justice League 3000 is taking place on? Maybe a universe where, if you went back and looked at Superman in the 21st Century, he might be wearing his underpants on the outside.
But before you get too excited, remember that in this universe, Beetle didn't get shot in the head.
Nrama: OK, so what I'm hearing is, Justice League 3000 doesn't take place in the future of the New 52 universe. It takes place in the future of a universe that's like the pre-New 52 universe — where Blue Beetle is Ted Kord, and he has the familiar history with Booster Gold. And this is really those two characters.
Giffen: Yes. It's actually Blue Beetle and Booster Gold.
We're finally going to give the fans the Blue and the Gold. There are no tricks. It's Beetle and Booster.
The last time we saw Beetle and Booster, we ended with, "and they lived Bwa-ha-happily ever after." This is basically — look, if you want to call it a certain universe, then think of it this way: If we did another Justice League series like I Can't Believe It's Not the Justice League or Formerly Known as the Justice League, this is the third one.
No tricks here. This is J.M. DeMatteis' and my version of Blue Beetle and Booster Gold.
Check back next week for more of our interview with Giffen about the comic's Futures End ties, its new female Flash, and the upcoming appearances of Lois Lane, Sinestro and more.