- Catman is unceremoniously taken out of the picture by showing up and being utterly ineffective.
- The Secret Society of Super-Villains forms.
- Mind-wipes soon follow.
- The Justice League under attack by Starro.
- Black Lightning offered Justice League membership.
- Vixen and Firestorm emerge as DCU players.
Writer Gerry Conway came to DC after writing titles such as The Amazing Spider-Man and The Incredible Hulk for Marvel Comics. Conway immediately hit the ground running, writing many of DC's marquee comics, among them, Detective Comics, Superman and The Justice League of America. While writing Justice League, Conway flirted with the idea of Black Lightning joining The JLofA but had Lightning turn them down, as he preferred to work alone. Conway also went on to create characters for DC such as the previously mentioned Vixen and Firestorm, while also launching, in his newly minted position as writer/editor, a new title, The Secret Society of Super-Villains. In SSoSV, Catman never actually joined, he just fell off his yacht. Somewhere, a young Brad Meltzer is reading.
Fast forward twenty-plus years and New York Times bestselling author is writing Green Arrow and following up on his influences. Catman immediately gets his ass kicked by Green Arrow basically falling off the boat all over again per SSoSV. Fast forward to Identity Crisis and after a twenty-plus year absence, The Society is re-formed and in its wake Conway creation Ronny Raymond (Firestorm) is killed as Conway's other DC creation, Vixen, looks on, helplessly. Later, Meltzer plays with a thread laid down in the pages of Conway's Justice League of America run. This thread, under Meltzer, involving the mind-wiping of heroes and villains would extend another two years within the pages of Green Arrow, Teen Titans and Catwoman, amongst others.
Recently, in the pages of Justice League of America #3 (formerly JLA), Black Lightning and Vixen have both joined The League just in time to fend off a Starro invasion, one probably similar in scope to the Conway-penned JLofA #170.
So, is Brad simply riffing on the chords laid down by Conway or is he simply doing the exact same thing we all would like to do if we got the chance, taking small notes from different places in order to build a symphony?
Any way you look at it, good or bad, Gerry Conway, through Meltzer, has became an uncredited architect for DC's "New Earth." One in which, for the most part, we've all have actively enjoyed and participated in.
What do you think?