2. Give the Martian Detective a few supporting characters, and give him a place to go "home" to.
Now, the first part of this, I will admit, I have trouble with. It's a tricky line to walk when you're creating supporting characters for a main character who is the outsider. You can't have a character sit alone in a room by himself and expect him to carry a series. He needs to be around people--like what I was saying back in Number 8. At the same time, I don't want to see him "saddled" with, say a love interest or a sidekick, because it dampens the "outsider" vibe.
So, the trick is to get the relationships right.
I'll jump out of the Silver Age for a moment and dip into the gooey goodness that was the late 1980's Justice League International series. J'onn played the father figure to Guy Gardner, Blue Beetle, and Booster Gold, and the straight man to their juvenile (read: hilarious) antics. Not only was it comedy gold, but it was a good role for the wise and stoic Martian. We saw him in the role of protector and father figure:
And occasionally he'd offer his own dry humor:
Oh, and Starbucks was on Mars first, too.
Now I'm not saying go back to the JLI silliness. It wasn't my very favorite portrayal of the Manhunter from Mars (but it ranks pretty darn high), since J'onn rarely had any solo story arcs during the JLI run. (One annual does come to mind, though.) What I am saying is that DC needs to find a way for J'onn J'onzz to interact with people. Otherwise his character will never be revealed. One of the JLI's most endearing qualities was its characterization: well all felt we knew these characters, who weren't one-dimensional stereotypes or bogged down with the "Standard Generic Hero Personality." So, DC, find some people J'onn can play off of and put them in a room with him and let's see what happens.
I don't think we have to go full out "Dynastic Centerpiece." I know Scipio was a big believer in creating a "family" of sorts which revolved around a particular superhero. He faulted J'onn for not having one, and therefore, offered this as a reason why he would get killed off. I think there's some credence to the idea, but for some reason I balk at having J'onn be the center of a family of supporting cast. Perhaps because of the reasons which I'll get to in the next installment.
Scipio did propose some characters to be part of J'onn's Dynastic Centerpiece. I agree with a few of them: Slam Bradley, Gypsy (but not as a sidekick), King Faraday. I could see the JLU version of The Question in there (even though he has zero connection to J'onn), only to act as a darker, paranoid foil to J'onn's more upright methods of crime-fighting and truth-seeking. I would probably add Diane Meade in there to not only give a Silver Age flair to it all but I think there needs to be a strong female character in there somewhere.
In addition to that, J'onn needs a "home" to call his own. And not the Watchtower. Like an actual apartment, or a cool secret cave crimefighting hideout. (And no, not the abandoned House of Lies, either.) With some roots in a fictionopolis, it will only help J'onn's character development. Can you have Batman without Gotham or The Question without Hub City? Nope. So give Middleton back to J'onn (or another fictionopolis), make it reflective of J'onn character, and use it to provide conflict for some solo stories. (Preferably not the failing-meteors-every-other-week-and-Froot-Loops-From-Space kind, but the crimes-outside-the-norm kind.) Make his fictionopolis a little noir, a little old-fashioned, a little mysterious, and a tad strange.
In short, give J'onn some friends, partners, and possibly surrogate children (when Ted Kord comes back to life, that is!), and a nice place to call home. Perhaps an apartment with golf clubs and a Basset Hound.