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Infinite Crisis by Geoff Johns
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Infinite Crisis

by Geoff Johns, Phil Jimenez (Illustrator), Andy Lanning (Illustrator), Jerry Ordway (Illustrator), George Pérez (Illustrator)1 more, Ivan Reis (Illustrator)

Other authors: Oclair Albert (Illustrator), Marlo Alquiza (Illustrator), Marc Campos (Illustrator), Wayne Faucher (Illustrator), Drew Geraci (Illustrator)5 more, Jimmy Palmiotti (Illustrator), Sean Parsons (Illustrator), Norm Rapmund (Illustrator), Lary Stucker (Illustrator), Art Thibert (Illustrator)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: DC Comics Crisis (4), Infinite Crisis (7), Superman TPBs Post-Crisis Continuity (Infinite Crisis 1-7)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
419739,315 (3.45)10
As OMAC robots rampage, magic dies, villains unite, and a war rages in space, Earth's three greatest heroes--Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman--have gone their individual ways. To fill the void, long-lost heroes from the past return to make things right in the universe--whatever the cost!
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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
(Nothing quite inspires confidence like seeing that it took fifteen artists to draw a seven-issue miniseries.)

Infinite Crisis is a sequel to Crisis on Infinite Earths, twenty years on, in addition to being mired in the then-current DC continuity. In some ways, it feels very much like an attempt to replicate the success of its predecessor: there are beats here straight out of that story, down to a Flash sacrificing himself to (temporarily) beat the villain by running superfast, ending with some continuity alterations, and a completely gratuitous attack by every villain. But it doesn't quite work as well, and I'm hard-pressed to explain why, as most of what it does is what the original does. But what worked in the hands of Marv Wolfman and George Pérez doesn't always come across when done by Geoff Johns and Phil Jimenez.

Part of my difficulty with Infinite Crisis is that the character threads are muddled and unclear. Supposedly (you can see them on the cover) this story is about the trinity of Batman, Wonder Woman, and Superman, but that doesn't always come across. A theme of the Countdown to Infinite Crisis materials was Batman's lack of trust, and this is maybe the most successful of the strands: Batman has a conversation with the Superman of Earth-Two about their much more congenial relationship, and by the end of the story, he's recruited a gang of superheroes to help him out, including Green Arrow. Another theme of Countdown was Wonder Woman's willingness to kill, but that's addressed incredibly poorly here. First off, Batman and Superman still fail to account for the fact that the situation in The OMAC Project was perfectly constructed to make killing her only option; neither of them could have done better. Secondly, there's not really a reason or development that would lead to her stepping back on that philosophy here; just all of a sudden she's like, no, I could never do that again! Finally, Sacrifice set up this notion that Superman was so powerful he was starting to scare himself. Not even mentioned in Infinite Crisis.

Interestingly, this story uses the same notion that Marv Wolfman seeded in his own return visits to the original Crisis (see especially the 2005 novelization): that the New Earth that came into existence at the end of the Crisis was fundamentally darker, with heroes who were less heroic. But it's kind of unclear why or to what end this thread is introduced, because this story is just as guilty of it as any other: the Superboy of Earth-Prime kills minor characters by punching their heads off! I mean, seriously, I don't want to read that. If this story's violence is just as gratuitous as all the others', it's impossible to take its critiques seriously.

I hate the propensity of these crossovers to kill off minor characters to prove the situation is serious. The Phantom Lady introduced in Action Comics Weekly is killed, for example; she wasn't my favorite, but she was fun enough. But each of these characters probably is someone's favorite. I think the reason it bothers me is the feeling they're being killed off because they supposedly aren't anyone's favorite. I'm okay with the Flash being killed off because I know the creators probably like him, and it's an actual sacrifice for them to build up their stakes by killing their character. But killing a character you know the writer thinks is worthless doesn't build the stakes; killing off Phantom Lady doesn't make me think Geoff Johns will do in anyone important.

Some of my problems are down to choppiness-- the sacrifice of Barry Allen has a whole issue in the original Crisis. That of Wally West is a quick, sudden moment here. That made me care about Barry despite knowing nothing about him; I like Wally and this did nothing for me. Or the giant villain attack on Metropolis has little time devoted to it (it's more clearly explicated in the Infinite Crisis Companion) and thus comes across as super-random: all of a sudden it's happening, all of a sudden it's not. And when Alexander Luthor mentions how the continuity's changed: ugh, just ugh. It's the most forced, unnatural thing you could imagine. And so pointless.  The original Crisis was a bit navel-gazing, sure, but it cleared the decks of a cumbersome storytelling mechanism. This just introduces some changes for the sake of it, like Zero Hour did.

Perhaps the fatal weakness are the villains. The Superman of Earth-Two is only meant to be a temporary villain, but even then it's kind of hard to believe that he would act the way he does, at least for as long as he does. The Superboy of Earth-Prime is too much of a spoiled brat: that kind of villain is never interesting. And why does Alexander Luthor want to make a perfect world? I'm not honestly very sure. I did like the explanations of how all the Countdown miniseries tied together, though I felt like The OMAC Project tie-in was the least successful. (what did Alexander gain from making Brother Eye sentient or creating the OMAC army or, especially, giving control to Maxwell Lord?) But it especially nicely builds off the goings-on in Villains United and Rann-Thanagar War. The best villain is, of course, our Lex Luthor: no one ever gets the upper hand on him for long, not even his son from an alternate Earth.

The moments this book works best are the ones it slows down and is about something for minute. Batman's conversation with the Superman of Earth-Two. Booster Gold's desperate attempts to save the past in the name of Blue Beetle. The Wonder Woman of Earth-Two leaving Olympus to talk to New Earth's Wonder Woman. Power Girl discovering she does have a meaningful past. The emphasis on Nightwing as the world's most moral man. The trinity chatting before they split up on their various journeys. The assemblage of heroes who will watch the world while they're gone (including ones from Seven Soldiers).

And, I'll admit, I loved that Luthor's vibrational fork was built out of the corpse of the Anti-Monitor.

DC Comics Crises: « Previous in sequence | Next in sequence »
  Stevil2001 | Jul 6, 2014 |
In some ways it was better than the original Crisis, a bit less cheesy especially in the dialog. ( )
  ptdilloway | Nov 21, 2013 |
What a mess. Full of inside comments and nods to the readers. The DC universe is a mess.

One comment I have to make is I love how Batman always ends up with central role in these battles of galactic proportion. There will be god like villains moving planets. But wait! There's a back door! The villains weren't looking and Batman leads a select crew into the heart of the matter! I have seem this a dozen times. I get that Batman is the one solid DC character, he has kept me loyal to DC, but come on. ( )
  yeremenko | Aug 8, 2010 |
Very confusing. I think there were too many tie-ins to the DC monthly story lines rather than have this stand alone as a self-contained story. Still not sold on DC outside of Batman. ( )
  francomega | Jul 18, 2009 |
Alexander Luthor and Superboy-Prime, who along with Earth-2 Superman and Lois Lane, survived the original Crisis on Infinite Earths; have been living in a type of limbo, separate from the time line of Earth-1. Long chafing against their exile, the two manipulate Superman-2 into seeing the heroes of Earth as incontrovertibly tainted, and convince him to break loose from their "haven". Alexander Luthor had long before replaced Earth-1's Luthor with a hologram, and created the Villian's Society to bring the Earth-1 villains under his control. Alexander, using a machine that utilizes the remains of the Anti-monitor, creates a machine that will re-separate the multiple Earths that were merged into Earth 1 in Crisis on Infinite Earths. This machine is powered by the various heroes of those Earths, who are incorporated into the tower. Alexander Luthor's goal is to create a "Perfect" world, while Superboy-Prime, whiny little bitch that he is, seems only to want to pick fights with other Super(men). Alexander Luthor has also shifted the center of the universe from Oa, causing some sort of space storm that Donna Tory, Animal Man and other heroes go to fight. As if he wasn't busy enough, Alexander has also taken control of Brother Eye and the OMAC's and caused the Spectre to declare war on magic, killing off many of the magical characters from the DCU. Somehow, this all swings on Connor Kent and Dick Grayson, the only two heroes available to fight Luthor-3 and Superboy-Prime.

Confused? Don't be scared, you're not alone. The purpose of this seems to be to clear the chaff out of the DCU, to bring continuity into line and to reset the Big Three. This could be a very good thing, particularly if they quit making Batman a Paranoid Idiot. However, readers without a fairly extensive knowledge of the DCU will be mighty confused by this book, which aside from a plot that relies on no more than 5 TPB precursors, features some of the most complicated and intricate panel artwork I've ever seen. Big on two page splashes, my eye was literally accosted by some of this artwork. I didn't know where to look. Even the pages featuring a more traditional layout are packed with information, a situation not helped by the aged looking artwork. Nods to the original Crisis aside, a cleaner art style would have gone a long way towards making this book more readable. I do credit Johns and crew for doing their best to cram a lot of story into a little space, but between busy artwork and information overload, this one was tough going. Essentially, this is a 12 issue story that got crammed into seven issues. Fans of the DCU will probably find this required reading, but new readers should stay away. (Cross-posted from MeriJenBen) ( )
  59Square | Feb 20, 2009 |
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» Add other authors (9 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Geoff Johnsprimary authorall editionscalculated
Jimenez, PhilIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Lanning, AndyIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Ordway, JerryIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Pérez, GeorgeIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Reis, IvanIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Albert, OclairIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Alquiza, MarloIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Campos, MarcIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Faucher, WayneIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Geraci, DrewIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Palmiotti, JimmyIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Parsons, SeanIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rapmund, NormIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stucker, LaryIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thibert, ArtIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Didio, DanIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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