When last we left our heroes they had managed to figure out that something was wrong and get together in their extra-dimensinal club house to do something about it. Here they were attacked by the darkness and that’s kind of it, though I suppose I shouldn’t complain as it was only issue one. Now let us return to ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’
From here we jump from the dawn of man to the 31st century as we see that things are going wrong for the world and not just in the kind of way they do when you have a mad god trying to wipe your multiverse from reality. See the next few issues involve the group under the leadership of the Monitor trying to save what Earths remain, afterall remember that while you might be thinking your getting a big epic story DC is trying to reference everything they can in as short a space as possible whilst fixing their incredibly broken timeline. So under the leadership of a sauve bald man with a vision about the much bigger picture. The group begin to jump between worlds and points in time setting up and protecting giant towers from these shadow creatures in places and with people who don’t fit nicely into the current DC time period.
But first the bad guy, now it turns out the Monitor knows who is behind the attack though he won’t say and thus we are left with a villain in stereotypical darkness until book 5. Which while good for building a bit of tension in the book I won’t be so cruel and will tell you that it is the anti-Monitor and well you kind of know everything about the character right there.
One is good, one is evil.
There isn’t going to be a dramatic twist about which is which or why they are fighting, that is as they say kind of it. Which I guess makes sense with the amount of cameos we have to get into this book. See as the Earths, that remain, come together for some reason, possibly under the delusion that there is safety in numbers rather than just a bigger target, The Monitor dispatches his teams to the aforementioned different points in time and space, all of course upon the planet Earth (the only planet to ever matter), to plant giant towers that will hopefully stabilize reality and protect against the wave. This means that the mismatched groups get to pop in on all the DC books they struggled to get in to the regular crossover because they famously exist in different points in time, such Sgt Rock or the Haunted Tank who were active during world war 2, or Kamandi the last boy a character DC only dig out now for such “epic” events to show that they remember they own the character and he is from an unspecified point in the comics future, one that never really fit in with the more popular Legion of Super-Heroes or even the rest of the DC universe as a whole.
While this is happening there are two other plot points leading up the finish line that you should probably be aware of, one is the Harbinger is apparently destined to kill her adopted father ‘The Monitor’ and is already infected with some dark presence, the other is that the Flash (Barry Allen) previously sentenced for a crime he did not commit is now flashing into reality at inopportune moments where he tries to pass along a warning to those he meets all the while the skin disintegrates from his bones and he melts away. It’s really not that pleasant.
Now it is kind of easy to figure out who are the main stars and who are the cameos, even the Blue Beetle who is chosen as the champion of his world is really only a cameo next to anyone with an S on their chest. The only exception to this would probably be Psycho Pirate, a man able to manipulate peoples emotions, obstinately part of the world saving team up he is soon whisked away by the bad guy to serve his needs. I wouldn’t worry too much however, as I said before they kind of tell you anything you really need to know, he’s bad, he controls peoples emotions through eye contact, blah, blah.
This is kind of it for a few issues now though, just cameos and back story on what is actually going on. I wouldn’t worry too much about it though as it makes little sense. All you need to know is that Douglas Adams was right.
It turns out that this all caused by dam carbon based life wanting to know things instead of just writing it of as ‘because’ and due to people trying to find where the universe came from it must now be done away with and replaced. The lengths some go to to keep this are also a little extreme such as the ancient and peaceful race who refuse to do something as barbaric as execute somebody for a crime and so turn them into base atoms and shoot them across the universe for all time, totally aware of the passage of time and life around them. Which is of course far better than just killing someone.
There are some nice character moments buried in the book and even some time given over to peace and plot with the tail end of issue six and most of book seven. Though this does not last with perhaps the most famous bit of the Crisis coming at the end of issue seven. I hesitate to call this a spoiler but just in case it is maybe you should stop reading now and head on over to part three.
The death of Supergirl is well handled and they made sure to give her some decent screen time before this moment so that even if you didn’t know who she was you still feel something for her sacrifice. This isn’t the most heart wrenching moment of the series but in more ways than one it does mark the end for the book.
The whole fight between the heroes and the Anti-Monitor is well played out with a clean easy to follow fight on a rock floating through the multi-verse where the walls can come alive and Superman can bleed.