The New 52 was not only a way of bringing DCU up to a more modern telling, but it was meant to be used as a "jumping on" point for new readers. Why then, if the target is young folks yet to experience comics, was the decision made to reboot the old stories, yet keep a massive portion of each character's history intact? These young readers will experience the origins of certain characters for the first time, and then be lost again as elements of the recreated Universe return. Does DC plan to simply retell every story in a new way so young readers can experience them? If that is the case, not only do they have a monumental task before them, but a futile one. Batman himself was introduced to comics in 1939, and was later retconned to have first been active in the 1980s. With the New 52, he has again been retconned to have been active for just about 5 years. So he became Batman in 2006, and had 20+ years of adventures in a 5 year span? The current system in DC is broken, and the more you dig the worse it gets. Granted, change is a difficult thing in comics. The most beloved characters are the most profitable, and this makes altering huge icons like Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman a risky business.That isn't to say DC hasn't tried. In 1992 DC published arguably the most profitable story they've ever released, with The Death and Return of Superman. Announcing the imminent demise of the Man of Steel brought comic books to national attention and flooded stores with new readers. Then DC metaphorically slapped these fans in the face when they miraculously returned Superman to life before year's end. Then in 1993 Batman: Knightfall established a tired and weary Bruce Wayne who's spirit is broken before Batman's spine is. He then trains a replacement Batman in Jean-Paul Valley, and Knightfall ends with Valley as the new acting Batman establishing it as the new status quo for the series. However, Valley soon suffers a breakdown and Bruce's spine is miraculously healed, putting him back under the cowl in a little over a year since the start of Knightfall. The trend continued for Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and Green Arrow. Then in the midst of a time travel fiasco, the pre-Flashpoint Teen Titans got a glimpse of the future in the Titans Tomorrow, a grown-up, brutal version of the Teen Titans. Set 10 years into the future of the then-present 2004, the Titans Tomorrow established themselves as a no-nonsense team of heroes to replace the former greats who were lost in a great "Crisis." Superboy took up the mantle of Superman, the Tim Drake Robin put on the cowl of Batman, and Cassandra Sandsmark became the new Wonder Woman. Up until the New 52 reboot, this future has been shown as possible although more and more unlikely. Then in 2009, after the "death" of Batman the previous year, Nightwing aka Dick Grayson assumes the mantle of Batman with Bruce Wayne's son Damian Wayne as his sidekick Robin. This was a much loved change, which could have easily been maintained as a natural succession in the Batman story. However, DC again returned Bruce Wayne, but decided to let Dick and Damian continue on as Batman and Robin, while he ran "Batman Incorporated," an initiative to recruit new "Batmen" around the globe. However with the New 52 Bruce Wayne has returned as Batman and Dick is once again Nightwing.
My proposal, is that these young heroes do what they were always meant to do, and replace their mentors. Instead of making Superman a young hero again every couple decades or so, give Kon-El the chance to fill the shoes he was literally made to fill. Instead of compressing Batman's timeline again and again, allow Dick Grayson or Tim Drake to become the Batman they were raised to be. Give Cassie Sandsmark the chance to be the heroine her gods wanted her to be. These young heroes were made to one day replace the old guard. Let them fulfill their destinies, instead of replaying the events of the past.
Give young readers these young heroes and move the DCU forward not into the "future" for a small span of time, but into the "present" permanently. Titans Tomorrow established the young heroes as adults by 2014. 2 years to go and again DC reboots their universe with old stories. This is not the "DCnU." This is the DCU with a fresh coat of paint over peeling wallpaper. The only "DCnU" will be one of change. Not repetition.