Working out a timeline for Rising Stars is not easy. There are a few fixed dates - the Flash happened in 1968, the Specials graduated high school in 1986. There are some guidelines - Act Two takes place ten years after the showdown in Colorado, Poet speaks of six decades as covering the lifespans of the Specials, and there are a few 'a year ago' and other such internal relative dating. After, however, we're on our own.

There are no visual cues - the art tells us next to nothing for dates. There are no cultural references - the clothes, the cars, the physical environment are totally generic and contemporary to us instead of to the time they are supposed to be depicting. Nobody's wearing bell bottoms or flowered skirts in the 1960's and 1970's, no male adults are sporting mutton chops or even facial hair, and the Specials themselves, when shown in their childhood, are dressed generic contemporary. I'm only a few years younger than they are and I have photo evidence of having spent the 1970's in brown, orange, and green velour and corderoy. It's an unfortunate side effect of the generally inconsistent and aggressively mediocre art that has plagued the series, but that's a story for another day.

I've tried to use a combination of fixed dates, internal indications of time passing, and plain common sense to piece this puppy together. Justifications where necessary, citations only when the information is relatively obscure.








suggests a change of worldview for John and the Specials and their new phase, as world players, commences.