Pencillers: Phil Jimenez, Jerry Ordway and Ivan Reis
Inkers: Andy Lanning, Jerry Ordway and Art Thibert
George Perez Cover: For once, Perez’s cover is nice and easy! Kal-L on the left punches Superman.
Page 1 – Panels 1-4: With the horizon dominated by the recent appearance of Earth-2, Ragman and Mr Terrific share a conversation about faith.
Page 1 – Panels 5-6: Both heroes mention their teams; Mr Terrific is a member of the Justice Society of America while Ragman is a member of the Shadowpact that formed to fight the Spectre during the DAY OF VENGEANCE mini-series.
New Pages in Collected Edition: The INFINITE CRISIS collection has a new two page (pages 140 and 141) spread here featuring a shot of those heroes who are attending the church.
Page 2 – Panel 1: Green Lanterns (GL) John Stewart and Hal Jordan; Jordan doesn’t look that happy and flies off in Panel 2, perhaps remembering his destructive rampage a few years ago following the Coast City disaster. Jordan became a renegade for a while, destroying the GL Corps, the Guardians of the Universe and tried to destroy and rebuild the entire universe during ZERO HOUR.
Page 2 – Panel 3: Zauriel, an Angel of the Heavenly Host who joined the JLA some years before, partly as a proxy for Hawkman. Since leaving the League he hasn’t been around much.
Page 2 – Panel 5: Blue Devil was originally just a man (Daniel Cassidy) in a suit but, during the events of DAY OF JUDGEMENT (not to be confused with DAY OF VENGEANCE) he was transformed into an actual demon.
Page 2 – Panel 6: Gypsy speaks with Nightmaster while Detective Chimp looks on. Both Nightmaster and Detective Chimp serve with Blue Devil and Ragman in Shadowpact.
Page 2 – Panel 8: Blue Devil stalks past Huntress who is also from a Catholic background.
Page 3 – Panel 1: At the end of the battle against Superboy Prime last issue, several heroes vanished when Earth-2 appeared. They, along with Keystone City, have appeared on the new Earth. Left to right are STRIPE, Flamebird, Sand, Hourman, Flash (Jay Garrick) and Wildcat.
Page 3 – Panel 2: Flamebird asks why they have been transported to this Earth; the answer is that they were all originally Earth-2 characters pre-CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS. STRIPE is Pat Dugan and, pre-Crisis, was Stripesy, sidekick to the Star Spangled Kid; Flamebird is Bette Kane and, pre-Crisis, was the niece of Kathy Kane. The pair helped Batman and Robin as Batgirl and Batwoman respectively.
Page 3 – Panel 3: Sand is a silicon based life-form and can detect chemicals and such in the ground.
Page 3 – Panel 5: Kal-L and Lois stand in front of the Daily Star offices in Metropolis on Earth-2 having been transported there like the others at the end of the previous issue.
Page 5 – Panel 2: Skeets and Booster Gold walk a blindfolded Jaime Reyes through tunnels towards the Batcave. I’m not sure how Booster knows the location of the cave, unless it’s information from the future that Skeets has fed him.
Page 5 – Panel 6: Batman appears and, justifiably, wants to know what they’re doing there.
Page 6 – Panel 1: Despite Jaime’s protests, he’s revealed as a the new Blue Beetle with a look that is radically different from the two previous incarnations. The stylised black markings on the chest, though, do hark back to Ted Kord, the previous Blue Beetle’s costume.
Page 6 – Panels 3-6: Skeets has information from the future that Booster is using to make sure he’s in the right place at the right time. The hologram projected by Skeets in panel 4 shows Mr Terrific, Black Canary, GL John Stewart, Black Lightning, Metamorpho, GL Hal Jordan and Green Arrow. In panel 6, Booster admits that he’s changing history by including the new Blue Beetle on the team Batman’s assembling to take on Brother Eye.
Page 7: Lex Luthor, having escaped from Alex’s clutches in INFINITE CRISIS #3, makes his way back to Titans Tower where Superboy recovers from the beating he received from Superboy-Prime. In a not entirely altruistic move, Luthor plants a crystal stolen from Alex’s fortress in Superboy’s clothing. He refers to him as “my son” in reference to the fact that Superboy shares 50% of his genetic code with Luthor.
Page 8 – Panel 3: Back on Earth 2, Kal-L remembers his days working at the Daily Star. As mentioned in the notes for the previous issue Pages 28-29 – Panel 3, the editor of the Star was George Taylor. However, as was shown in that panel, it’s possible that this could be Perry White. In front of him are the Earth-2 versions of Jimmy Olsen, Lois Lane and, of course, Clark Kent.
Page 8 – Panels 5-6: Despite Alex’s promises that being transported to Earth-2 would cure Lois, she’s obviously not feeling well. However, her words “But this isn’t…” could mean that she knows this is not the pre-Crisis Earth-2.
Page 9 – Panel 3: As Lois lays dying in his arms, Kal-L says he “couldn’t save our earth back then“, a reference to the loss of Earth-2 during CRISIS.
Page 9 – Panel 5: “I can’t be another survivor of a dead world.” Kal-L could be referring again to either Earth-2’s destruction in CRISIS or his home planet of Krypton.
Page 9 – Panel 7: The Earth-2 Lois Lane-Kent dies.
Page 10: Kal-L cries out the name of his wife in grief, a shout so loud that the glass in the buildings and cars shatter and the ground he stands on cracks. His stance is a direct reference to the cover of CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS #7 which featured the death of the Silver Age Supergirl – you can view and compare that cover along with a number of other pastiches at the CRISIS #7 Homages page. On Earth-1, Superman hears the cry and flies off to investigate.
Page 11 – Panel 1: The news reports state Liberty Belle and Manhunter have gone missing; Liberty Belle was, pre-Crisis, an Earth-2 character so – in the same way that the heroes shown on Page 3 were transported – it makes sense that she should disappear. However, Manhunter (Kate Spencer) is a relatively new creation; the original Manhunter was, admittedly, an Earth-2 character named Paul Kirk (or Dan Richards), but this Manhunter has no connection with Earth-2. If the selection criteria is the hero’s name, why wasn’t Mr Terrific taken? He, like Kate Spencer, shares the name of a pre-Crisis Earth-2 hero but, as was shown last issue, remained on Earth-1. [Simon Barnett suggested by email that she has vanished as she is the daughter of Iron Munroe and the original Phantom Lady, both Earth-2 heroes, which kinda makes sense.]
The second report mentions aid efforts in Bludhaven following the Society dropping Chemo on the city in the previous issue.
The last report mentions the disappearance of Keystone City as shown last issue. It also mentions the city vanished “as it did infamously decades ago” which is tied in to the Flash’s continuity post-Crisis. Pre-Crisis, Flash (Jay Garrick) lived in Keystone City on Earth-2; Flash (Barry Allen) lived in Central City on Earth-1 but following the events of CRISIS both Flashes, it was shown, were living on the same Earth, just at different times. Later, to explain why Barry Flash didn’t know of the existence of Jay Flash except through comic books, it was explained that Keystone City had been held in stasis for years by a group of villains and that the entire population of Central City had been made to forget about its twin city’s existence. Barry Flash discovered the hidden Keystone City and teamed up with Jay Flash to defeat the villains, thus giving us the post-Crisis version of Flash of Two Worlds that started the whole multiverse thing off in the first place.
Page 11 – Panels 5-8: Wonder Woman attempts to intervene in a riot, but the people take no heed of her; they’ve all seen the footage of her killing Max Lord that was broadcast by Brother Eye.
Page 12 – Panels 9-10: The Earth-2 Wonder Woman arrives in her invisible plane and Wonder Woman mistakes her for her own mother who died during the OUR WORLDS AT WAR event.
Page 12 – Panel 11: Earth-2’s Wonder Woman refers to herself as Diana Prince (and so will I from now on to avoid confusion) the name she used in her civilian identity back on Earth-2.
As this is post-Crisis continuity, Hypertime has been ret-conned out. The events of THE KINGDOM, therefore, couldn’t have taken place so this is the very first time these two have met. In his grief, Kal-L blames Superman for Lois’s death.
Page 14: Kal-L picks up a car and rams it into Superman. This image is a direct homage to the cover of ACTION COMICS #1 (shown on the right) that launched Superman on to the world. Note the similarity in style of car and even the left headlight in both pictures has sprung free above the hood of the car.
Page 15 – Panels 1-3: Kal-L and Superman fight, Kal-L driven crazy with grief.
Page 15 – Panel 4: Alex admits he knew Lois was never going to survive, revealing that he has been lying to Kal-L from the start. Despite Alex’s words, Psycho Pirate can sense very little sorrow.
Page 15 – Panel 5: Alex’s tower, like those of the Monitor in CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS, works as a “vibrational tuning fork” separating Earths 1 and 2; it is only by staying in its proximity that Psycho Pirate, a pre-Crisis Earth-2 character, can remain on Earth-1. Alex reveals his callousness again by admitting that he’s not bothered by Superboy Prime’s disappearance in the previous issue.
Page 16 – Panels 2-3: Diana Prince gives a very brief summation of her origin. Panel 2 shows her as she looked back in 1942 when she made her first appearance; it also shows her cradling the unconscious form of pilot Steve Trevor who was her love interest and whom she would later marry; the original Cheetah appears in the bottom right corner; Diana is shown in her civilian identity in the bottom left with Etta Candy. In Panel 3, she is shown with her husband following the events of CRISIS where, as she says, they were allowed entry to Olympus.
Page 16 – Panel 4: It seems, from Diana’s words, that Steve Trevor is now dead and she knows she will follow him soon. It’s worth mentioning, also, that at no point does Diana speak Trevor’s name – she only ever refers to him as “my husband“. This could mean that an Earth-1 equivalent of Trevor is due to appear in the revamped Wonder Woman’s life following INFINITE CRISIS.
Page 16 – Panels 9-14: A quick run through of the many identities Wonder Woman has adopted; in order they are Princess; Wonder Woman (fighting another Cheetah); Ambassador; Goddess of Truth; Warrior; and killer as she stands over Max Lord’s corpse.
Page 17 – Panels 1-5: Diana, after an all-too brief appearance, vanishes, presumably gone forever.
Page 17 – Panel 7: Hovering above the Metropolis of Earth-2, Wonder Woman sees the vast amount of damage caused by the battling Supermen.
Page 18 – Panel 3: Superman tells Kal-L that the city is empty. The only other people on Earth-2 would be the other heroes transported here as, at the end of CRISIS, Earth-2 no longer existed but was absorbed into the new universe. Other than the heroes who have a connection to Earth-2 or were originally from there, no-one else (such as civilians) would appear. In LEGENDS OF THE DC UNIVERSE: CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS #1, a CRISIS missing story was featured, effectively serving (roughly) as issue #4½ of the original series. It detailed Earth-D falling to the Anti-Monitor but, before its destruction, the Justice League worked with its heroes to construct “an interdimensional Noah’s Ark” to allow as many civilians as possible to escape Earth-D. As Barry Allen’s Flash explained, the civilians “merge with their Earth-1 counterparts“; when Earth-2 combined with the other surviving Earths at the end of CRISIS, the same must have happened, explaining why no civilians exist on the re-emerged Earth-2.
Page 19 – Panel 4: Wonder Woman steps in between the two Supermen to stop the fight; Kal-L shows his contempt for the Earth-1 heroes by saying that he needs no help to tell the truth.
Page 20 – Panel 1: Kal-L rails against the Earth-1 JLA; the mention of lobotomising their adversaries refers to events that were revealed in IDENTITY CRISIS where the satellite era JLA voted to mindwipe Dr Light and, following that, Batman himself. He mentions, also, the creation of Brother Eye and the OMACs which was, ultimately, a consequence of Batman’s mindwiping. Had he not been mindwiped, Batman may not have become so paranoid about his fellow heroes that he needed to spy on them.
Page 20 – Panel 2: Kal-L mentions the killing of Maxwell Lord by Wonder Woman.
Page 20 – Panel 3: Finally he points the finger at Superman, claiming that he could have stopped everything. It is worth noting that since CRISIS, the character of Superman has always been willing to take the lead in any crisis, but only after being asked: he never stands forward first and takes control, he always needs to be placed in that position by others.
Page 20 – Panel 5: Superman pop’s Kal-L’s argument, refuting the idea that Earth-2 is perfect. After all, as he says, what need is there for a Superman in a perfect world?
Page 20 – Panel 7: Kal-L comes to the realisation that this Earth isn’t really his.
Page 21 – Panel 1: The artistic error of the previous issue, Page 3 – Panel 2 is rectified here as Breach is clearly shown on the tower again. Alex and Psycho Pirate stand in front of the tower where, from left to right, Breach, Power Girl, Martian Manhunter, Black Adam, Lady Quark, Nightshade (who was captured during the DAY OF VENGEANCE SPECIAL) and (barely visible) The Ray are trapped. As Alex mentions, each of the characters represent one of what he calls the “core Earths“:
- Earth 1 = Martian Manhunter
- Earth 2 = Power Girl
- Earth 4 = Nightshade
- Earth 6 = Lady Quark
- Earth 8 = Breach
- Earth S = Black Adam
- Earth X = The Ray
Earth-3 isn’t represented as Alex is the sole survivor – it was the first Earth to be shown being destroyed in CRISIS; Earth-5 never existed – the similarity between a hand lettered 5 and S was so strong that S was adopted for the Fawcett Publications characters (eg Captain Marvel etc), although the S does tie in with Shazam; Earth-7 was a world mentioned in RETURN OF DONNA TROY – the Earth-7 equivalent of Donna Troy became Dark Angel and worked for the Anti-Monitor in the same way that Harbinger did for the Monitor during CRISIS.
Page 21 – Panel 3: This is the first mention of an Earth-8. Breach is described as being that Earth’s Captain Atom; he originally starred in a short lived series and had definite similarities to Captain Atom – it’s possible he was a planned reboot of Captain Atom. Alex also mentions that Kyle Rayner, Helena Bertinelli and Jason Rusch would have appeared on Earth-8 had the multiverse survived CRISIS. Rayner is a Green Lantern, Bertinelli is The Huntress and Rusch is Firestorm.
Page 21 – Panel 4: The Batcave where Batman has assembled the heroes Booster mentioned back on Page 6. Left to right we have Booster Gold; Skeets; Batman; Blue Beetle; GL John Stewart; Green Arrow; GL Hal Jordan; Black Canary; Sascha Bordeaux; Mr Terrific; Metamorpho and Black Lightning.
Page 21 – Panel 5: Alex prepares to start mixing and matching the Earths in his search for the perfect one.
Page 22 – Panel 1: Back at the RANN-THANAGAR WAR, Alex’s hands are seen in the breach in reality, widening the rift. Firestorm, and his mentor Professor Stein wonder what to do while below him are GL Alan Scott, Adam Strange and Red Tornado.
Page 22 – Panel 2: Psycho Pirate asks what many readers had been asking – why Alex was working in secret.
Page 22 – Panel 4: The rift as seen from Alex’s point of view; within the rift, from top to bottom, are Supergirl; Starfire; Firestorm; and GL Kyle Rayner.
Page 22 – Panel 5: Kal-L finally realises something’s wrong and who’s to blame.
Page 23 – Panel 1: Alex, with several OMACs flying around him, fires the tower’s energies up to Brother Eye; meanwhile he describes Kal-L as the key to the multiverse.
Page 23 – Panel 2: Brother Eye, receiving the energy from the tower, begins “Program: Earth Spawn” by firing the energy towards Kal-L.
Page 23 – Panel 3: Alex says “everything comes from Superman.” Kal-L was the first costumed superhero and began the entire industry; he is the original to whom every other costumed superhero in the DCU and elsewhere owe their origin.
Page 23 – Panel 4: The beam from Brother Eye hits Kal-L, splitting him into numerous alternate versions. From left to right they are: Nova, an identity Superman adopted after he lost his superpowers; Overman from Grant Morrison’s ANIMAL MAN run; the Tangent Comics version of Superman; Kal-L himself; the medieval version of Superman seen in SUPERMAN: KAL; Superman-Red and Superman-Blue from the same-titled imaginary story; and the Russian Superman from SUPERMAN: RED SON.
Page 24: And just like that, the multiverse is back. Note that near the top of the left hand column of Earths is a square Earth – this is Bizarro World.
Page 25 – Panel 1: On Earth-1, Nightwing attempts to summon as many heroes as possible.
Page 25 – Panel 2: Top to bottom are Geo-Force, Mirage, Mr Miracle, Terra and Katana. Due to the glowing lines on Mr Miracle’s costume, this appears to be Shilo Norman from the Seven Soldiers mini series rather than the original Scott Free.
Page 25 – Panel 4: Again top to bottom are Mary Marvel, Firehawk and Captain Marvel Jr.
Page 25 – Panel 5: With the multiverse back in place, the Marvels disappear, presumably to appear on Earth-S.
Page 25 – Panel 7: In Bludhaven, the Titans help with the rescue attempts following the Society’s attack. Left to right are Joto, Argent (kneeling), Raven, Speedy, Robin and Beast Boy.
Pages 26-27: Despite his call, Nightwing stands alone in Titans Tower.
Pages 28-29: The multiple Earths appear in the sky above Earth-1, many of them exploding, presumably with the stress of coming into existence.
Page 30: Superboy is the only one to respond to Nightwing’s call and, as they swap the information they have as to the identity and location of those responsible for the multiverse’s recreation, they decide what all heroes should – despite their lack of numbers, they have to do something.
Page 31 – Panel 1: Japan’s two heroes, Rising Sun and Dr Light, attempt to evacuate as many people as they can.
Page 31 – Panel 3: A figure who appears to be Barry Allen’s Flash bursts forth from the Speed Force and collapses. It is later revealed that this is actually Bart Allen, the former Kid Flash, who has aged during his time in the Speed Force.
Page 31 – Panels 5-7: He warns Dr Light that the Flashes “couldn’t hold him” and that “he escaped“. When asked who he points to:
Page 32: A radically different Superboy Prime, now dressed in armour that is reminiscent of the Anti Monitor’s.
Deaths in this Issue:
- E2 Lois Lane – dies of old age
- E2 Wonder Woman
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