Everyone who has read comics has read or at least knows about the mid 1980’s DC Comics series, Crisis On Infinite Earths. It was the maxi-series that aimed to simplify the ever-expanding, ever-convoluted and ever-perplexing use of the comic book publisher’s multiple versions of characters and worlds into one single and coherent existence.
And it successfully did that. Well, for about twenty years – which is a lifetime in comics.
In 2005, DC Comics published Infinite Crisis, the sequel to the original that, along with the subsequent year-long, weekly publication called 52, re-established the idea of multiple universes within DC Comics.
There were now a fixed number of realities in which stories featuring DC Comics characters could be told. Uh, 52 of them to be precise.
In 2008, Final Crisis, written by superstar writer Grant Morrison, illustrated by a who’s who of legendary comic book talent including J.G. Jones, Carlos Pacheco, Marco Rudy and Doug Mahnke, aimed to tell a high concept, senses-shattering final tale in the Crisis trilogy that encompassed the entirety of the various DC Comics universes. Famously, Final Crisis involved the death of Batman (later returned to his more normal status quo, of course).
Morrison, ever the heavyweight thinker, had planned a Final Crisis follow-up story. Over the years, amidst whispers and tidbits of information, fans learned that it would be a tale that would map out the entire existence of all the various DC Universes, leaving the publishing company with clear-minded direction for their future endeavours.
That magnum opus, The Multiversity, didn’t surface until the summer of 2014.
The Multiversity series began in August 2014 and encompassed two individual comic books that served as bookends to a further seven, interrelated, one-shot publications that were released over nearly a full year. The high concept group of comics, as promised, explained the inherent multiverse of DC Comics in a manner that invoked human history, philosophy, cosmology and string theory, featuring both relatively unknown and new characters as central protagonists. Here, the entirety of creation was in threat by cosmic villains, the Gentry, who aimed to control all thought and existence, enslaving all to their own machinations.
Led by the Justice Incarnate, whose members hail from different universes that includes Calvin Harris, the Superman President of Earth-23; the Thunderworld heroes from Earth-5 who are akin to the Captain Marvel characters; the Freedom Fighters from Earth-X where the Nazi regime won World War II; Ultraa who was the first superhero of Earth-33; the Earth-4 heroes of the Charlton Comics heyday; Doc Fate and the Society of Super-Heroes from Earth-44, along with many, many others.
The Multiversity is a silver-age superhero homage mixed with what seems like visionary, thirty-first century sci-fi ideas that make for somewhat convoluted but always compellingly fun reading. Today, it gets the handsome Absolute hardcover treatment, compiling the entire series of publications together along with maps and explanations of the multiverse in an oversized feast for the eyes.
Sure, it’s a bit pricey at nearly $100, but The Absolute Multiversity HC would be a most welcomed holiday gift for any close friend or loved one in your life. Not to mention yourself, as well. Let’s face, you deserve something this wild and fun, no matter what universe you might hail from!
Cross time, space and universes and make the run to your local comic book shop today and pick up joyously heroic The Absolute Multiversity HC today!
To get a deeper understanding of The Multiversity, check out the video that DC Comics produced a few years ago, seen directly below. Crazy fun!