Released recently back in August the 20th, Multiversity – Morrison’s latest masterpiece, dwells into the DC Comics multiverse with story lines involving worlds and characters that seem to predate and also surpass the New 52 line-wide universe and continuity.
In our recent review, Grant Morrison’s The Multiversity showcases many familiar faces and multiple new ones that will sure get their chance to shine.
The Multiversity is set to take a deep look into the multiverse during its eight issue run, which includes six one-shots that will spotlight major stories involving each Earth and two grand issues which will open and close which can be cataloged as the first act of the story line conceived by Morrison, more than five years in the making.
What we Know So Far
With the news that the DC Comics website had launched an interactive map for the multiple Earths that exist in the multiverse of the DC Comics line, several Earths with their heroes and villains, have been revealed to us.
Apart from the Earths we already are familiar with, which are Earth 0, Earth 2 and Earth 3 (former home to the Crime Syndicate), Multiversity‘s interactive has spotlighted three more worlds.
With details revealed at the official website from DC Comics, and other facts gathered here, we take a brief glimpse at each Earth.
Blue skies. Lush green trees. Rolling amber hills. Oceans that stretch for thousands of miles. Bustling cities and small towns. Vibrant, colourful life, community and culture. All of it kept safe by a squadron of super heroes known as the Justice League.
Not Earth-Prime, which was the Earth before The New 52, Prime Earth – as referenced by most fans, is the home to all the Vertigo, Wildstorm and DC Comics characters after their worlds merged into one, restarting existence on DC Comics as we know it. Gimmick or not, it has already been almost 4 years since the relaunch and DC continues with the strategy of releasing 52 titles monthly to maintain the promise that was The New 52 since its inception.
Also the name of an ongoing title in The New 52 which focuses on the adventures of the heroes of that world, Earth 2 has shown us how a world without the Trinity (Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman) can still face the worst dangers in the universe and still live to tell the tale.
Revealed to have been destroyed before the events of the first major DC Comics’ event, Forever Evil, Earth 3 was home to twisted versions of our beloved heroes, including a Batman not afraid to cross the line between justice and madness, a Superman known as Ultraman that despises lesser beings and a Lex Luthor worse than the one we already love to hate.
A complete opposite of Earth-0 in every way, good and evil are reversed in the ruthless nations of Earth-3. Greed, ambition and conquest are rewarded, especially when they come at the expense of others. Heroes have no place in a world like this, and so it’s a collective of villains that seek to prolong and foster their Earth’s way of life: Ultraman, Superwoman, Owlman, Power Ring, Johnny Quick, the Sea King, Atomica and Grid. Or as they’re better known, the Crime Syndicate.
Yet in a world where destruction is celebrated, how long will it be until all is eliminated and existence itself is wiped out? For Earth-3, that day finally arrived as the entire world was eliminated by an even larger instrument of devastation—the Anti-Monitor. Now, only a few members of the Crime Syndicate remain after fleeing from their Earth to ours. One could view it as poetic justice… if Earth-3 cared about poetry.
A rich world vibrant with culture, community, art and commerce. Earth-7 shared a similar history and development with Earth-8, down to its numerous heroes. Many of Earth-7’s greatest protectors had close counterparts on Earth-8. While the differences between the two were subtle, the potential held within this world was great.
Earth-7 is briefly seen on the first issue of Multiversity, during the events of the first issue, it is the first earth to fall to the menace of The Gentry – a yet to be explained treat, and its sole survivor, the Thunderer, joins forces with one of the story’s protagonist, Superman of Earth-23.
For generations, life on Earth-8 passed like it does on our world. Largely uneventful, and when problems did arise, they were handled easily by the world’s large population of super heroes. Until a day finally arrived like no other, and Earth-8’s strongest heroes were forced to unite against a common threat. The Retaliators were born!
Our first issue opens with the DC characters meeting the DC version of the Marvel Universe — so there’s now this really weird thing happening, where everyone’s doing versions of everyone else’s characters meeting somewhere. [Laughs] So the world kind of caught up with that one. We’ve got a confrontation between our own Justice League and “The Retaliators,” this kind of version of the Avengers, in the first issue. It’s almost as if it’s happening at the exact same time as Jonathan’s doing his book.
Note how the circle surrounding the 8 is a homage to the classic DC Comics symbol.
An Earth were genders are reversed, Earth-11 is actually part of the old DC Multiverse, and somehow managed to made their way into the multiverse of the New 52. However it could be that is the same Earth we read about in Pre-New 52 comics, as the events Multiversity are considered to predate and even go beyond what we know as the New 52.
On Earth-11, the genders may have switched, but the nature of heroes hasn’t. The Justice League still fights for good but the line-up includes a woman who doesn’t take being called Plastic as an insult. And a group known as the Freedom Fighters, including Columbia, Black Condor, and the Phantom Man is never too far from fighting the good fight.
It is said that on this world, the Amazons of Themiscyra never hid themselves from the world, but instead shared their knowledge, influencing the course of its events. Is a matriarchal Earth a better one? Even though it still has its villains and needs its heroines, there seems to be no doubt that this world has seen changes for the betterment of all womankind.
Pulp heroes all around the globe, Earth-20 is almost DC’s version of Marvel Noir, albeit a very interesting one. The essence of the story goes back to playing with classic heroes who saw magic and aliens as something impossible – not very like today’s heroes which consider such ocurrences as normal. This Earth has a certain Indiana Jones vibe.
Amidst a landscape drawn from the pulp adventures of yesteryear, Doc Fate, Immortal Man, the Mighty Atom, Green Lantern Abin Sur and Lady Blackhawk (leader of the ferocious female aerial squadron that bears her name) travel the face of the globe, protecting their fellow people from threats both powerful and strange.
Adventurers and science heroes all, the men and women of the S.O.S. represent the very best that their Earth has to offer, providing a formidable challenge to those who would seek to do harm to their home.
Official description on the website:
When Jorel and Lara of the dying planet Krypton sent their son, Kalel, to Earth, he not only would grow up to become Earth-23’s greatest hero, he’d become one of the world’s political leaders, as well. Secretly disguised as United States President Calvin Ellis, Kalel helps to maintain world peace as Superman, and in the process has inspired a generation of young black super heroes to rise up and join him.
Inhabited by heroes very similar and yet very different to the ones we know, Earth-23 is home to the Superman president of the United States, indeed an astonishing Earth to showcase in Multiversity. DC Comics readers may remember this specific version of Superman which also appeared in early issues of Action Comics during the first months of the New 52.
A “binary universe” within the Multiverse, the malevolent Earth-40 vibrates in harmony with its far more peaceful counterpart, Earth-20. But where that world gave birth to a Society of Super-Heroes, it’s the villains that reign supreme on Earth-40, uniting to form the merciless Society of Super-Villains: The immortal, sociopathic Vandal Savage, the macabre Doc Faust, the lethal, pitiless Lady Shiva, the brutal and brilliant Blockbuster, and the terrifying Count Sinestro. Together, they kill, conquer and pillage anything that strikes their fancy, with little to stand in their way.
Hope, faith and laughter are in short supply. This is a world of despair, sadness and fear, where mankind’s darkest qualities are rewarded. On Earth-40, only the strong survive… but only the ruthless thrive.
With Multiversity, Morrison is materializing various details of his philosophy as written by himself on the book: Supergods: What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, and a Sun God From Smallville Can Teach Us About Being Human (2011)
“We can fly across the Atlantic in hours, access any information instantaneously, see the world from space or zoom in on our own rooftops, like Superman home from a mission”. “We have online secret identities, other lives, missions. Everyone is special; everyone is a superhero now.”
The book plays with our very own imagination and breaks the fourth wall during the story. In a great twist of storytelling the reader can really feel connected to the events playing in front of his or her eyes.
With such a rich multiverse, no one can tell who is out there, just waiting to get the spotlight, thus granting DC Comics the opportunity to evolve and grow more characters from the infinite pool of creativity residing in the decades of publication of the company.
What do you think? Which alternate Earth should get the spotlight? Which is your favorite alternate version of our beloved characters?