DC’s “Rebirth” history appears to have morphed again, this time not only making the characters from Young Justice remember each other, but making other characters in the DCU remember them as a team.
Despite the history of the Young Justice being eliminated by 2011’s "New 52" reboot of the DCU (along with the elimination of some of their key members), the Young Justice team is back in a new series that began earlier this year.
The series has been revealing bits and pieces about their new continuity, which appears to include characters and adventures from their post-Crisis era as a team. Impulse and Conner Kent Superboy are returned to continuity, and although Tim Drake didn’t remember them until just recently, the entire team knows each other again.
Other People Remember Them Too
The history (and memory) of the Young Justice team extends beyond that title. According to Superman: Leviathan Rising Special #1, Clark Kent recently wrote a newspaper article about Young Justice, one that Lois Lane casually mentioned and called a “hatchet piece.”
Clark defended his Young Justice article to Lois by saying, “Those kids need a lesson in cleaning up after…”
Unfortunately, Clark was interrupted before he finished his sentence. But he’s presumably referring to the events of Young Justice #1, where parts of Metropolis were damaged before the young team suddenly disappeared.
But the key takeaway from the scene is that Clark and Lois actually know who the Young Justice team is. These characters that didn’t exist a year ago, and this team that had never formed in the current continuity, is suddenly part of the new “Rebirth” timeline.
On the opening page of the last couple issues of Young Justice, an issue begins with a one-page introduction that includes the phrase: “There are so many questions as to where the team has been and how they even remember each other.”
But Young Justice isn’t hurrying to answer every single continuity question, just moving forward with the team’s newest adventures and filling in blanks whenever possible.
A few of the answers have been given. For example, Tim Drake regained his memories of the team with help from Zatanna. And Bart Allen appeared in DC continuity several months ago, hopping into this timeline from the Speed Force after the events of “Flash War.”
But Cassie claims that she never forgot Young Justice the way Tim Drake did. And Conner Kent has not only re-emerged, but he suddenly has a history that includes farming on the Kent farm and living in Smallville with the Kents.
Best of Both Worlds
So far, it appears that the new Young Justice team has a new continuity that combines pieces from an older post-Crisis DCU with a few bits from the "New 52." Cassie Sandsmark is still Zeus’ granddaughter, like her "New 52" origin, but Bart Allen is back to the name “Impulse” and Conner Kent is again a half-Kryptonian clone that was made on Earth.
The Young Justice also features dialogue that “winks” toward long-time fans. For example, Bart says at one point that he has a plan, but oops - he left the item he needs in his “late-‘90s costume.” And when Amethyst asks Conner if he’s really “the” Superboy, he answers: “Well, a Superboy.”
The team has also started fresh with a few new characters, one of them the familiar character Amethyst (who’s supposed to be getting her own title soon), and two of them brand new additions to the DCU.
Here’s a review of what we’ve learned about the Young Justice characters:
Cassie Sandsmark is the granddaughter of Zeus and lives in Metropolis, where she’s trying to make her own way without Zeus’ help or meddling. Before she got pulled into the latest adventure, she had a job and was planning to start college in the fall.
As we mentioned earlier, Cassie claims that she remembers the Young Justice team from the past.
Tim Drake had his mind opened by Zatanna so he could remember all his friends from the old Young Justice team, including the post-Crisis version of Conner Kent and Bart Allen. (His girlfriend, Stephanie Brown, doesn’t appear to remember any of the Young Justice history, though, and her father is now alive.)
Tim went to see Zatanna because of his experiences with the “Batman of Tomorrow” from recent issues of Detective Comics.
He told the team that “somebody erased the entire Young Justice from my mind!” But in Young Justice #6, he said he remembers all of them now.
In the next issue of Young Justice, Tim is supposed to be getting a new superhero name. His friends in Young Justice call him Robin, but of course, in the current continuity, there’s already a hero named Robin, Damian Wayne. For the last few years, Tim has gone by the title, “Red Robin,” but Young Justice #7’s solicitation makes it sound like he’ll get a different, brand new name.
Conner Kent was a student at Smallville High School when he decided to infiltrate a secret S.T.A.R. Labs facility in the Nevada desert. Inside one of the laboratories was an experiment with various gems, each being blasted with energy. When Superboy broke into the lab, he was whisked away to GemWorld.
He’s been in GemWorld for months. He befriended a pregnant woman whose husband was recently killed, pretending to be her husband so some soldiers would not hassle her. In return, she let him stay at her farm, and he’s been pretending to be her husband ever since, helping her take care of her new daughter while waiting for someone from Earth to come rescue him.
Teen Lantern is an 11-year-old named Keli Quintela who hacked into the Green Lantern Power Battery from her mom’s house in La Paz, Bolivia. She's using source energy to power a ring of her own making, and she uses it to create an energy field around herself in the shape of a giant mech.
She thinks the Guardians aren’t aware of her, but she came to Metropolis to get an internship at the Hall of Justice by revealing what she’d done.
Jinny Hex is the great-great granddaughter of the notorious Old West bounty hunter Jonah Hex. Her mother recently passed away and left her a trunk with several powerful items inside, and she now carries the trunk in the back of her pickup truck.
She came to Metropolis from Dripping Springs, Texas, to see if Superman knew what to do with the dangerous stuff in the trunk.
She claims she never left Texas before last week, but acknowledges that she met Batman two weeks ago (presumably referring to her brief appearance in Brian Michael Bendis’ Batman Giant issue, where Batman traveled to her small town and asked her about an item she donated to a museum).
Amethyst, the princess from GemWorld, has joined the team. She encountered the other Young Justice members when they were unexpectedly transported to her world. After they helped her defeat the Dark Lord Opal, she decided to help them return to Earth and accompany them there.
Unfortunately, she and the Young Justice team were transported away from GemWorld, but unbeknownst to her, they were not transported back to Earth. The Council on GemWorld secretly banished Amethyst forever and sent her and the Young Justice team somewhere unknown.
The solicitation for Young Justice #7 says the team will be lost somewhere in the Multiverse. Issue #8 will reveal some of the secrets from Jinny’s past, and as mentioned previously, Tim Drake will get a new superhero name in upcoming issues.