iFanboy cub reporter Jeff Reid sends me strange things sometimes. Recently, he's taken to sharing some very peculiar maps. But these milestones won't be familiar to Rand McNally and may doom your TomTom to cybernetic depression. Like Narnia and Terabithia, getting to these places require a little imagination.
Jeff found a map of the United States of America, as it existed in the DCU of 1990.
Take it away, Jeff:
"There seems to be a perennial question among comics fans: What's up with those fictional cities in the DC universe? Just where are Gotham City and Metropolis located? Star City's on the West Coast, right? Is it kinda close to Coast City or is it somewhere in Washington? It's weird. Why won't anyone at DC just say where these damn cities are on a map? A 2008 video show touched on this topic, but few answers were forthcoming.
"We were all looking towards the comics for these questions to be answered. We were looking in the wrong place.
"Recently, I was at my parents' house to help them clean out my old bedroom. While there, I found a stack of a ton of my old role playing game materials. In middle and high school, I'd been an avid player of Dungeons and Dragons but still dabbled in other games. Our group had been known to delve into GURPS, Vampire: The Masquerade, and a few others including the DC Heroes role playing game. It was the later material that I found most intriguing.
"DC Heroes, published by a company named Mayfair Games, was a paper-and-pencil role playing game that was first released in the mid-'80s but still had material coming out into the mid-'90s. It had a system in place where all types of characters with all types of powers could interact. It was all fully licensed and approved by DC. Most of the adventures were set in the then-current continuity. I had bought plenty of used source books and game modules for this RPG, but hadn't actually played with most of them. They had laid forgotten in a closet for years. In the stack of these books was a copy of something that would provide answers to all of those questions about the various DC cities. I found a copy of The Atlas of the DC Universe.
"This thing is a clinical look at the location and history of the cities, planets, and dimensions of the DCU. Well, it's a look at these places as they existed in 1990. The maps aren't flashy, but they get the job done. Metropolis is in Delaware. Gotham City is in New Jersey. It's true! This DC licensed product says they're located there so you have to believe it!
"If the logo on the cover doesn't convince you, the author of the book might. Paul Kupperberg is listed as the main author of this book. Kupperberg was an editor at DC for years and even wrote several runs of series including the 18 issues of Doom Patrol immediately preceding Grant Morrison. His name carries some weight. He wasn't just a writer that Mayfair grabbed off the street. Kupperberg knew DC Comics.
"You may notice that a few storied cities like Opal and St. Roch aren't mentioned anywhere but that's simply because they were created after 1990. This book is very much of its time. Take this all with a grain of salt. Who's to say what the various Zero Hours, Final Crisis-es, and Superboy continuity punches did to these cities' locations. This is one answer to all of your questions, but it's not The Answer. As always, make your own continuity."
Click on the image to manifest your destiny.
How about a closer look at New England?
Stay tuned for more from The DC Universe Atlas later this week.