In every installment of Abandoned Love we will be examining comic book stories, plots and ideas that were abandoned by a later writer without actively retconnng away the previous story. Feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.
Reader Michael M. asked about Earth-2 and Earth-1 and whether all Earth-2 adventures were comic books within the confines of Earth-1.
I don't believe so, Michael, and I think it's explained in the very comics that you mentioned to me in your initial e-mail.
In Showcase #4, we see that Barry Allen was inspired to become the Flash through reading the adventures of Jay Garrick...
Later, however, Barry travels to Earth-2, where he meets the REAL Jay Garrick, and they explain how this could be...
My buddy Xum Yukinori let me know that the Justice Society of America stories written by Gardner Fox were also comic books in Earth-1. So, essentially, they were talking stories written by Fox because of his special dream powers...
No other Earth-2 hero encountered this particular problem in their interaction with Earth-1 heroes (when Alan Scott first shows up in Green Lantern #40, he and Hal have known each other for quite a while).
I think that this, therefore, was DC's way of abandoning that particular concept, by suggesting that it was specific to just Gardner Fox being attuned to the adventures of Jay Garrick and the JSA, but that's it.
Amusingly enough, though, the Earth-2 Bill Finger might have been busy, since the Earth-2 Wildcat was inspired to become Wildcat by the comic book adventures of the Earth-2 Green Lantern, both titles written by Bill Finger!
Michael noted that later on, in Flash #179 (written by Cary Bates), we see that another earth, Earth Prime, also had Julius Schwartz tuned into the adventures of Earth-1...
Since Earth Prime, though, was repeatedly referenced (with Earth Prime Cary Bates and Elliot S! Maggin being recurring characters, of a sort), I think it is clear that Earth-Prime had greater access to the adventures of Earth-1 through some odd inter-dimensional transmission.
That Gardner Fox's JSA issues were counted is more problematic, but it seems like that is the extent of it all.
It's a good thing, too, since Gardner Fox wrote a few early adventures of Batman that could have otherwise come back to haunt the Earth-1 caped crusader!
Thanks to Michael for this fascinating topic. And thanks to Xum for pointing me to the JSA issue!
If anyone else has a suggestion of an interesting abandoned comic book plot, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org!