Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Crisis on Multiple Earths Vol. 6, that is.
Yesterday DC Comics released their October 2012 solicitations -- always fun, but no great surprises within (quick run-down: Blackhawks Vol. 1: The Great Leap Forward, Blue Beetle Vol. 1: Metamorphosis, Captain Atom Vol. 1: Evolution, DC Comics — The New 52 Zero Omnibus, DC Universe Presents Vol. 1: Deadman/Challengers of the Unknown, Green Lantern: Sector 2814 Vol. 1, Just Imagine Stan Lee Creating The DC Universe Omnibus, Red Hood and The Outlaws Vol. 1: Redemption). Something did just pop up on the schedule for March 2013, however, that bears some discussion.
The Crisis on Multiple Earths trade series collects the Silver Age team-ups between the Earth-1 Justice League and the Earth-2 Justice Society, stemming from some rather simplistic (by modern standards) team-ups of the 1960s to significant pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths events like the deaths of Mr. Terrific and Red Tornado, the return of the Seven Soldiers, Black Canary's move from Earth-2 to Earth-1, and appearances by the New Gods, the Legion of Super-Heroes, and the Captain Marvel family.
The first volume came out in 2002, and the second, third, and fourth volumes followed every year, plus some "Team-Up" books that collected meetings between individual Earth-1 and Earth-2 characters.
Then Crisis on Multiple Earths hit the skids. Volume 5 was solicited for 2007, but then never came out, and for a while we here at Collected Editions thought the series was dead. Murmurs of volume 5 emerged again in 2009, and finally, the book came out in 2010.
Comic Coverage has a fantastic series of articles on the various JLA/JSA team-ups, and there's also more information on the DC Crisis Wikipedia page about the contents of these collections. To put a too-fine point on it, volumes 1-5 collected up to Justice League #185 from 1980, which was a JLA/JSA/New Gods story, and then stopped.
And now, two years later, it looks like we'll have another Crisis on Multiple Earths volume next year.
Usually the Crisis books have collected just two or three story arcs. That would suggest Crisis on Multiple Earths Volume 6 might include Justice League #195-197, #207-209 (with All-Star Squadron #14-15), and #219-220. I'm not sure the first two stories have much significance, but the last is the one where, through a series of twists and turns, we learn the Earth-1 Black Canary is actually the daughter of the Earth-2 Black Canary, not the same character, ironing out some continuity issues that were later changed by Crisis on Infinite Earths anyway.
At the same time, there's really only one more major JLA/JSA team-up of the era after that, and that's Justice League 231-232, which also cameos the Monitor and Harbinger from Crisis on Infinite Earths -- a lead-in, if you will. Twelve issues is more than these collections usually include, but I would love to see DC go for broke and finally, finally, finish this series, a good eleven years after the first volume emerged.
How cool a nice, well-bound hardcover omnibus of all the JLA/JSA team-ups from the six volumes of Crisis on Multiple Earths would be is another conversation entirely ...
What are you buying from DC's October 2012 solicitations? What are you still waiting for them to collect?