Power Girl to star in “Worlds’ Finest” in May 2012

In May of 2012, DC Comics will release a “Second Wave” of titles as part of its historic DC COMICS-THE NEW 52 initiative.

DC COMICS-THE NEW 52 “Second Wave” includes:

EARTH 2 – Writer: James Robinson. Artist: Nicola Scott. The greatest heroes on a parallel Earth, the Justice Society combats threats that will set them on a collision course with other worlds.

WORLDS’ FINEST – Writer: Paul Levitz. Artists: George Perez and Kevin Maguire. Stranded on our world from a parallel reality, Huntress and Power Girl struggle to find their way back to Earth 2. Perez and Maguire will be the artists on alternating story arcs.

Last week, we announced DC COMICS-THE NEW 52 “Second Wave,” featuring six new series coming in May. In WORLDS’ FINEST, writer Paul Levitz jumps between parallel Earths, following the story of Earth 2’s Huntress and Power Girl as they struggle to find their way back home. But fans of these heroes should keep in mind that they aren’t the Huntress and Power Girl we know so well. Levitz offers some insider insights on what readers can – and can’t – expect from WORLDS’ FINEST:

“Nothing’s quite the same…the world they’re in, the rules of the game, the stakes…so Helena and Kara are facing dilemmas in WORLDS’ FINEST that are nothing like any version of either of their previous lives…

Learn the identities they used on Earth 2…watch why those change when they get here…and see the choices they face. It’s a layered puzzle, pulling on the rich history of the DC Universe…but even more on the potential for an explosively different lives in the New 52 universe…and over time, it’ll all pull together to affect the lives of so many…

As a writer, it’s a true joy to collaborate with star artists George Perez and Kevin Maguire, and to be able to design a series to fit their talents together as seamlessly as possible. And the heroines of WORLDS FINEST are simultaneously old friends (to me, as well as each other) and very new acquaintances that you want to grow closer to…if you can. They’re showing a lot of their true selves…but hiding even more.

Welcome to new worlds…and a totally new WORLDS’ FINEST.”

Paul Levitz spoke to Newsarama about revisiting Power Girl and Huntress in the new universe. A few items that jumped out at me:

[Worlds’ Finest] will bridge the gap between the “New 52” Earth and DC’s new version of Earth 2, bringing Power Girl and Huntress from one parallel world to another.

The story ties into the new Earth 2 title by James Robinson and Nicola Scott, which launches at the same time as Worlds’ Finest. It also stars the same character as Levitz’s Huntress mini-series.

Fans can’t help wondering…. is this the same Karen Starr who showed up in Mr. Terrific?

Was this Earth 2 Huntress the daughter of Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle on Earth 2?

And if she was, will she meet this Earth’s Bruce Wayne in person?

We learn from Levitz that the Helena who currently appearing in his Huntress mini is not Helena Bertinelli as was implied, but actually Helena Wayne from a parallel Earth. Which is cool if she’s impersonating Earth 1’s Huntress and Bertinelli does in fact exist in the New 52, but enormously disappointing otherwise. With DC’s “no duplicates” (except for all these duplicates here and here…) rule in place, I fear the rich, complex Huntress character we’ve known for the past 22 years is, like, Oracle, no more. DC Comics: always burning bridges.

Levitz: […] I think we got a great response to the Huntress mini-series, and I think that response was the attitude that she portrayed in those stories, and I’m hoping to be able to do that kind of level of reaction going forward.

The first scene in the first issue is basically kind of a Sex in the City moment of the two girls at lunch, at a posh place that turns out to be in Tokyo, and Helena’s busy burning her Helena Bertinelli passport and playing with a deck of five or six other passports she’s got in other names, trying to decide who she’s going to be next.

Newsarama: That name Bertinelli in there is a fun tease, but this is Helena Wayne, right?

Levitz: We will ultimately know that she’s Helena Wayne of Earth 2, but whether Bruce will know that she’s Helena Wayne, or how Bruce or Selina Kyle will come to know that and react to that, we’ll see. I’m still working out all the dramatic potential in it. Obviously, there’s enormous pent up possibility in those moments, and you want to make all that drama work. And you don’t want to do all that in issue #1, panel #1. You want to take people on an interesting ride.

It’s going to be very connected both to Earth 2 and to the New 52 Earth. In a sense, it’s the bridge book between the two. It should be a very rich, exciting experience, if we do it right.

Newsarama: Will they encounter people from Earth 2, or are they the only ones here from Earth 2?

Levitz: As far as I know, they’re the only ones here from Earth 2 so far.

Newsarama: But they do tie into what James [Robinson] is writing in the Earth 2 series?

Levitz: Oh, absolutely. They’re here because of what happens in his book. And they’re concerned in their different ways very much about what’s going on on the world they came from. Maybe Power Girl is more concerned about that part than Huntress. But each has their set of issues back there.

Newsarama: We’ve seen Karen Starr in Mr. Terrific, but only briefly. Is she like the Power Girl we’ve know in the past, before the relaunch?

Levitz: I think she’ll be a little bit different from what you’ve seen in the past. I’m building off the facts that are established about her in Mr. Terrific. I’m trying to pick up on things that happened in those issues and connect them in properly. But there’s a lot more to her story.

She’s got a very defined sense of mission about going home. She needs to get back there. She feels that world needs her there. And hopefully that will play out in a very interesting fashion.

These two gals got dumped here in a confusing and challenging circumstance, in a world that’s a lot like theirs, but not the same. And each of them has different sets of things they want to do as a result.

Karen Starr’s brief appearance in Mr. Terrific is best forgotten. Nice diplomatic answer from Levitz on that subject.

I honestly didn’t think we’d ever see Power Girl again. This “new” universe is shaping up to be an awful lot like the “old” pre-Crisis universe with a lot of highly selective cherry-picking from the post-Crisis era.

As I periodically check in to see how the New 52 is developing, I continue to be disappointed at seeing the same old names tasked with modernizing DC’s universe. It doesn’t excite me to try DC’s “new improved” universe when they keep going back to the same heavily used creative pool. (My god, Paul Levitz wrote Huntress and Power Girl in the 1970s. George Perez and Kevin Maguire were hot artists in the 1980s. Personally I like Maguire’s art a lot and think it holds up well today; on the other hand, Perez’ art always feels a bit dated and awkwardly out of place on current books. The writer concerns me more: couldn’t they find someone younger who could actually relate to twenty-something women in the 2010s? Someone with better references than “Sex & the City”?!)

Are you excited about Power Girl being included in the New 52? It does make things enormously simpler for her to be a universe-hopper from another parallel world who’s stuck on “our” world with her Huntress. I wouldn’t mind Power Girl being a less tragic character than the one who suffered through all that post-Crisis bullshit.

Can they really go back to pre-Crisis characters if it means burning beloved characters who bear the same name? Are creators who were around during the last reboot the right team to make those characters relevant for today? How likely is it that Levitz, Perez, and Maguire will even be working on the book six months from now?

More importantly: what will the costumes look like?

Comics Alliance wins the Best Title Award for their reaction to the news: DC Reboots the Huntress So Hard that Her Reboot Got Rebooted