Crisis On Infinite Earths


Main Details
Volume 2
Date 2015
Location of Publication Germany
Genre Superhero
Format Hardcover
Type Graphic Novel
Language German
Notes Crisis On Infinite Earths - ursprünglich erschienen zwischen April 1985 und März 1986.


Nickpearson87 posted 5 months ago:

Crisis on Infinite Earths was a twelve-part maxi-series published by DC Comics throughout 1985 and 1986 intended to completely reboot their fictional universe; bringing an end to their Multiverse concept for a trimmed-down continuity for new readers. This was DC's first publication in their Crisis Trilogy as a way of rebooting timelines and correcting discrepancies in comic-book lore regarding several versions of superheroes residing on alternate Earths. The Multiverse concept, although a great idea in theory, was shunning a lot of new readers due to its complex nature and its woven discontinuity at the time. It was therefore decided that the Multiverse should be streamlined into one coherent Universe for DC to start afresh with its fictional history; a trend that has continued regularly with the company to fit modern times and its target audience.

The original Crisis was written by Marv Wolfman and George Pérez and is considered one of the comic industry’s greatest literary triumphs of all time. It was this series, which spans nearly the entirety of the DC Multiverse, that first gave me an interest in all things comic book related and, in my opinion, none has surpassed its complexity and emotional thrall. You can feel the characters’ intense emotions throughout and we are introduced to much more developed characterisations of various iterations of superheroes spanning the Multiverse; much more so than could be done during earlier periods of standalone storytelling. The artwork is visually stunning; attempting to include every character at the time of publication, and the story will keep you hooked throughout.

The Monitor and the Anti-Monitor, powerful cosmic beings of positive and anti-matter respectively, set in motion a Multiversal war, with the Monitor assembling heroes from all over the infinite stretch of Earths to save the five remaining universes that are eventually merged into a New Earth, with one unified history and continuity for readers to explore afresh. As the intention was to include nearly every character DC had in its publication library in some way or another, the story can sometimes seem confusing to the novice comic reader. It seems as if one plot deviates into another, then gets put on hold until such a time down the line when it is convenient to revisit; only for it to end in only two frames. The reader must account for the sheer number of heroes and villains present during this story, and not everyone may be familiar with characters present in background frames. I found this to be the case myself during my first read, especially regarding the War and Western heroes; plus, the supporting cast of the Legion of Superheroes who I am not particularly familiar with.

I started reading comics just prior to The New 52 run so in some respects, these Bronze Age characters are completely new to me; except a few I have always found interesting such as the Huntress and Robin of Earth-Two and the Crime Syndicate of Earth-Three. Due to recent television series and video games, I am familiar with a few of the characters present, but of course these are completely different iterations set in a different time period. The Bronze Age of Comics being what it was, there is a lot of repetitive speech between characters detailing what powers they have and seemingly narrating for each other. This is largely due to the aforementioned sheer scale of characters present and is largely done for us; the readers, to identify the heroes and villains as well as their fictional history in the original DC Multiverse. I must admit this can become a little tedious at times, and the plot can become very convoluted if not followed exactly with a little bit of research. This being the case, it may be a good idea to revisit some of the golden and silver age comics available on the market to get a feel of the narrative devices used compared to today’s storytelling method.

This particular edition of the epic Maxi-Series is a hardback special which was sent out to subscribers of the DC Comics Graphic Novel Collection, published by Eaglemoss in 2015. It collects all twelve editions in one long run, but also includes a few extras such as an introduction explaining ‘The Story So Far…’. This is the case for most of the books within the collection and gives some history on the creation of the series, how the DC Multiverse was forged at the time and some background on how DC hinted at the Crisis in earlier comic titles with cameos of Harbinger and the Monitor in The New Teen Titans comic. It also has some artwork at the back included within the Absolute Edition of the series and some early sketches. As great as the story is (and always will be), this edition suffers from its binding; i.e. full-page spreads cannot be seen clearly, and the panels are sometimes very hard to make out due to the size and proportions of the book, especially when looking out for cameo background characters. Of course, there is the aforementioned Absolute Edition still out there (albeit out of print), plus the paperback and Kindle editions as well as the upcoming Compendium which is stated to include a lot of tie-in issues.

Overall, Crisis on Infinite Earths is the epitome of storytelling within the comic book world and spawned a near-annual trend in crossovers and reboots. A lot of the continuity changes within the DC Universe Post-Crisis have since been undone and/or revamped due to either editorial decisions or confusion in the timeline (especially in regards to Power Girl, Hawkman, Wonder Woman and the Legion of Superheroes). With a new Multiverse to explore following The New 52 Reboot, this original Crisis serves as how major and minor characters can interact with one another on the printed page in an utmost human fashion. Worlds have lived, worlds have died, as have a lot of the major players within this title, but their stories live on whenever we revisit their past adventures.

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