Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Wednesday Night Blogging!

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The above image was composited together by me for the newspaper's weekly ApartmentFinder tabloid publication. Originally, we were going to do a riff on King Kong, but I couldn't come up with a decent gorilla photo to put in there... but I knew that our clip art server had that Godzilla-esque creature, so we went with that.

If I ever find a decent gorilla picture that I can use (not a "real" Kong, you understand, 'cause there's copyright problems there), we'll do that King Kong cover!

Infinite Crisis #3:

Continuing my review of the series to date... My copy has the GA Superman confronting Batman, with ghosts of E2's Robin, Catwoman, Bruce Wayne and baby Helena (Huntress) Wayne in the background.

The issue opens with a battle between Aquaman and his allies against various sea-villains in San Diego (I guess it's "Sub Diego" in the DCU these days). Tempest (the former Aqualad) is coming to some kind of realization in Atlantis when energy explodes from his eyes, there's a FWOOSH, and the Spectre appears, smashing Atlantis with his... hand, I guess.

Back to Paradise Island (I guess even the letterer didn't want to deal with Themiscyria or whatever it's called) as the Amazons face off against the Omac horde. Paula's completed the Purple Death Ray (I think it's Paula, she invented the Purple Healing Ray, after all, in the classic comics).

Meanwhile, at the Batcave, Brother Eye's telling Batman about the butt-whipping he's giving the Amazons, and not listening to the Dark Knight's instructions to stop. Bats has a breakdown, wishing to start over... then someone appears and calls him by his first name.

It's Superman... the E2 one.

Meanwhile, at the E2's Fortress, Power Girl talks with E2's Lois Lane about all the memories she's regaining of E2. Alex stops them so he can run more tests, and Superboy Prime asks PG if she's going to let Lois die. He's convinced the only way to save her is to bring back Earth-Two. Superboy Prime whines about Connor (Superboy) Kent, and then gives PG one of E2's LL's journals to read.

In El Paso, the Shadowpact are gathering, but they're not enough to deal with a building falling... fortunately, Superman shows up to catch it and fix it. A guy named Jaime finds the Blue Beetle's scarab.

In the Polaris Galaxy, Donna Troy's team arrives, and they try to figure out what's going on, and why there's a storm in the center of the universe. Thanagarians show up to make things complicated.

In Keystone/Central City, Flash leaves his wife and twins to help.

Back at the Batcave, E2 Superman tells Batman what happened to his counterpart on E2 (Batman's counterpart, that is), and that he will always stand by Bruce's side.

Back to Paradise Island, the Purple Death Ray is fired! But the Omacs continue to attack. Wonder Woman tells the Amazons they must retreat while they have a chance. So, the Amazons and their whole freakin' island disappear, leaving Diana behind.

Meanwhile... the Secret Society meet, and we find out that Luthor's been betraying them... and then the other Luthor, the one in the Battlesuit, arrives! The DCU's Lex can't think straight because of the other Luthor's theta brainwaves, which operate on an anti-frequency, and then he unleashes an energy bolt at Luthor.

Back at the Batcave, E2 Supes tries to get Batman to help him bring back E2, and that it would replace the existing earth, and it would be better. E2 Supes admits the E2 Robin wasn't better than the Robin he knows. Batman unleashes the Kryptonite Ring on E2 Supes, but since it's not from E2 Supes' Krypton, it has no effect. E2 Supes leaves in a huff (or maybe it's a minute and a huff... )

Meanwhile, the two Luthors battle, and we find out that the Luthor who's been operating the Secret Society is really Alexander Luthor! Someone -- presumably Superboy -- arrives to tear the Battlesuit off of Lex, and he's going to kill Lex, but Luthor teleports away first.

Meanwhile, Power Girl looks for Superboy and Alex to tell them she thinks they can figure out a way to save Lois and everyone else from both Earth-One and Earth-Two. Batman reviews what's been happening. Power Girl finds a massive machine, built from the remains of the Anti-Monitor, which already has some of the power sources Alex needs... the Martian Manhunter, Black Adam, The Ray, and others. We find that PG is another source of power for the machine, and Superboy Prime beats her up so they can connect her.

The final panel reveals that Superboy Prime was the one who attacked the Watchtower.

So... a lot of crap happens in this issue... but the most important thing to take from this issue is that Alexander Luthor and Superboy Prime have been leaving their "heaven" way before E2's Superman broke through the barrier. I'm guessing it has something to do with Alexander Luthor's being comprised of both positive and negative energy at the same time (this was revealed back in Crisis on Infinite Earths).

Another important thing to note is that while E2 Supes thinks they're doing something noble, he's being manipulated bigtime by Alexander. Of course, Superboy Prime is being manipulated bigtime, too... but I can understand that a bit more... Alex Luthor is closer to being a peer to him than E2 Supes is. And, I guess that the two of them had a lot of time together...

One wonders if Alex has been abusing Superboy prime... or is this a form of Stockholm Syndrome in effect?

Infinite Crisis #4:

My copy is Superboy vs. Superboy, with Krypto appearing -- yeah, like I'd buy the verson without Krypto on the cover!

The issue opens with members of the Brotherhood of Evil and other Secret Society members unleashing Chemo on Bludhaven. Alexander Luthor and Superboy Prime watch this. Power Girl asks what they're doing, and they tell her they're erasing everything bad. Superboy calls her a traitor. Alexander says he's gone through 78,000 scenarios to accomplish their goal, and this is the most efficient. Alex also reveals they've been coming to this universe for quite some time.... well, for the past several months. They retrieved the Anti-Monitor's corpse, Alex posed as Luthor to form the Secret Society... the SS was formed to gather individuals to power the machine, individuals who had vibrational frequencies in their genetic codes... one from each earth. The Ray inherited his father's code for Earth-X, for example. The fuel comes from this universe's magic, and Superboy's procurement of Eclipso's black diamond allowed them to use the Spectre to gather it up. The machine's programming came from Brother Eye -- Alex gave it sentient life. Superboy-Prime moved planets around to cause the Rann-Thanagar war, shifting the center of the universe away from Oa to where Earth Two's universe's center was.

PG thinks this is why Batman got paranoid, Wonder Woman killed Max Lord, etc... but Alex says they did that themselves. He needs E2's Superman alive, but doesn't think he can stop this. Alex says he's learned that no matter the universe, Supermen will always clash with Luthors.

Superboy flies off to talk to "him," as Alex promised him.

Meanwhile, Batman checks in with Nightwing, and says he needs Dick's help.

E2 Superman checks in on his Lois, and Alex tells him he should stay at her side.

In Smallville, Superboy Prime arrives to argue with Superboy over who deserves to be Superboy. So they start fighting.

Meanwhile, Booster Gold finds Jaime, the guy who found the Scarab last issue, and discovers the scarab has fused to Jaime's spine.

The battle of the Superboys continues. Krypto shows up to help against S-Prime.

Batman tells Nightwing what he's discovered about what's happened.

The Superboys continue to fight, and the Teen Titans and the Doom Patrol and the Justice Society show up to help.

In Gotham, Victor, the cop killed by Jim Corrigan (remember that?) becomes the new host for the Spectre.

The battle continues against Superboy Prime, and he smashes Pathan's head, and then he kills Wildebeest (actually, it's Baby Wildebeest, according to one of the blogs I frequent... or maybe it's a news page). He tears the arm off someone else, and kills a few other people I don't recognize. The battle has raged from Smallville to Keystone/Central City, and Kid Flash, Wally West and Jay Garrick show up to speed Superboy Prime into th Speed Force. Jay has to drop out before they enter the Speed Force, but before Wally enters it, he visits his wife and kids... and tells them he thinks he's going someplace else. His family comes with him.

Kid Flash keeps pushing Superboy Prime into the Speed Force, however, and then another Flash shows up - and I gotta tell you, it has to be Barry! Heck, Bart/Kid Flash recognizes him as Barry! Max Mercury and Johnny Quick, who had joined with the Speed Force before, also appear to help, and they all pull Superboy Prime into the Speed Force.

Jay tells the JSA'ers that the Speed Force is gone.

At Alexander's fortress, Alex has Black Adam call on the Magic Lightning to fuel the machine.

Out in space, the storm gets worse, and Air Wave is pulled into a million different directions. Alex starts "fixing everything," and then people start disappearing all over the place! Out in space, a second Earth appears... Earth-Two. And E2's Superman and Lois appear on it in front of the Daily Star building.

So... Alex's plans are revealed, but the only people who know of it are captured and providing keys to the multiverse machine. Four issues into this seven-issue series, and the heroes haven't much of a clue as to what's happening.

The wrap-up... tomorrow night, with Infinite Crisis #5... and we'll be all caught up!

Jon

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