The Annotated Crisis on Infinite Earths

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Issue #9, December '85: "War Zone"

Wolfman, Pérez, Ordway

Plot Summary: Various subplots are advanced, including the status of Guy Gardner and the Guardians, Starfire II's trip to Tamaran, and the situation around the "warp zone" in Greenwich Village. Meanwhile, Brainiac and Luthor II speak to the villains they've gathered, and make plans for the conquest of Earths S, X, and 4 and, off-panel, succeed. L4, Harbinger, and Pariah are addressing the UN of E1 when Brainiac and L2 interrupt, demanding the surrender of Earths 1 and 2. The assembled heroes, aided by the dimension-shattering speed of Flash I and Kid Flash, break through to the conquered Earths. The Villain War, the second biggest battle in the history of the DC Universe, begins. In Brainiac's skull-ship, Psimon emerges from hiding, apparently kills Brainiac, and prepares to kill L2.


9.Cover: Starting with the front row, going by location of heads, Sivana, Cheetah I, Copperhead, Sinestro, Gorilla Grodd, Clock King, Terminator (Deathstroke), Luthor II, Joker, Silver Ghost, Predator, Mirror Master, Per Degaton, Tsunami, Kobra, Poison Ivy, Solomon Grundy, Plasmus, Jewelee, Eclipso, Captain Cold, Blackstarr, Lady Lunar, Captain Nazi, Shakedown (of the Masters of Disaster), Circe, Blockbuster, Scarecrow, Weasel, Black Manta, Black Mass (of the Cadre), Shadow Thief, Validus, Bolt, Black Adam, Punch, Killer Frost, Star Sapphire, Starro, Trickster, Silver Swan, Lightning Lord, Queen Bee, Doctor Polaris, Gizmo, Shrike (of the Cadre), Psimon, Penguin, Brainiac, Ghost, Doctor Double X, Chemo. The cameraman used a telephoto lens to get this shot, I'm sure...

9.1: Guy Gardner finally gets his ring for real.

9.1.3: This group of Guardians are part of the proactive schism. Gardner is a good choice to be one of their Lanterns.

9.2.1-4: This energy is not anti-matter per se, but rather a manifestation of the Anti-Monitor's journey to the dawn of time.

9.2.9: The caption directs the reader to Green Lantern #195.

9.3.2: Airborne, from top to bottom, Star Sapphire, Queen Bee, Trickster, Punch, Cosmic King, Silver Swan, Sinestro, Black Adam, Warp, Psimon, Count Vertigo. On the floor, Cheshire (on ledge), Eclipso, Copperhead, Quakemaster, Image?, Black Manta, Validus, Cat-Man, Felix Faust?, Penguin, Plasmus, Floronic Man?, Mirror Master, T. O. Morrow, Black Mass (of the Cadre), Overmaster (ditto) , Kobra, Captain Cold, Killer Frost, Starro, Bulldozer (of the Gang), Solomon Grundy, Doctor Psycho, Shaggy Man, Cheetah II, Fiddler, Joker, Chronos, Sivana, Shakedown (of the Masters of Disaster), Heatstroke (ditto), Gizmo.

9.3.3: Doctor Polaris telling Killer Frost to be quiet is interesting; she should know as much as he does.

9.3.4: He's referring to 3.22.5.

9.4.2: Brainiac's sensors can't scan the past.

9.4.6: Left to right, front to back, Weather Wizard, Silver Ghost, Shimmer, Mammoth, Cluemaster, Cheetah I, Joker, Brain, Mammoth, Ghost, Monsieur Mallah, Lord of Time, Vandal Savage, Image?, Kung. Cheetah looks like she's really out of her depth...

9.4.7: Terminator, Punch, Killer Moth, Huntress I, Matter Master, Starro, Plasmus.

9.4.10: Luthor I, Kanjar Ro, Chemo, Rainbow Raider.

9.4.11: Luthor I dies.

9.4.12: Ocean Master, Mister Mind, Kanjar Ro, Doctor Regulus, Pied Piper?, Doctor Spectro, Ace (of the Royal Flush Gang), Harlequin, Crime Doctor, Per Degaton, Mist, Icicle.

9.4.13-14: Brainiac and L2 are about as cold as a pair of dead ice cubes, hmm?

9.5: The captions direct the reader to New Teen Titans #14 & 15.

9.7.4: Dr. Jenet Klyburn works for STAR Labs.

9.8.2: The caption directs one to Firestorm #42.

9.8.5: Morgan Edge and Lana Lang.

9.8.6: Scribbly. Note Sugar & Spike photos.

9.8.8: Easy Company and the Haunted Tank.

9.8.11: The Anti-Monitor has made it back as far as the 1940s.

9.9: The villains have set Earth-4 ablaze, frozen Earth-X, and drowned Earth-S in plants.

9.9.3: Black Adam's boot.

9.9.5: That may be Cheetah on the left, Trickster or Weather Wizard in the middle, and Blockbuster on the right.

9.9.6: Nightshade.

9.9.7: Captain Atom being dragged away by Doctor Regulus and Kobra.

9.9.8: Chemo, the Statue of Liberty, and Blue Beetle's Bug.

9.9.9: We shift from the burning UN of Earth-4...

9.10.1: ...To the intact UN of Earth-1.

9.10.7: That's Wonder Woman on the left, of course.

9.11.3: Pariah is being dragged to the dawn of time.

9.11.4-5: Lana Lang, Jack Ryder.

9.11.9-10: Mona Nockwood, Clark Kent.

9.11.13: Only L2 and Brainiac wouldn't be satisfied with three whole Earths to rule.

9.12.1: "He almost looks like my father..." ...but bald. Baldness is unique to the Earth-1 Luthor II; it was caused by Superman II, and was the reason for L2's hatred of him.

9.12.4-5: Earth-4, Chemo, Gambler, Doctor Spectro, Cheetah II.

9.12.6-7: Earth-S, Per Degaton, Houngan, Circe, Sivana, Validus, Killer Moth, Felix Faust.

9.12.8-9: Earth-X, Fastball, Mist, Silver Ghost, Blackstarr?, Star Sapphire, Bolt.

9.12.14: Note pinky ring. This is a tribute to George Reeves from Pérez. (Reeves always wore a ring as Kent, and removed it as Superman.)

9.13.1-2: Note Ambush Bug poster.

9.13.6: The Anti-Monitor is now passing through 1917.

9.13.9-10: Gee, he manages to work both his real name and his sobriquet into his soliloquy.

9.14.2: Thunderbolt, Sargon the Sorcerer, Doctor Fate, Johnny Thunder I.

9.14.3: Jade, GL1, Starman I.

9.14.4: Star-Spangled Kid, Huntress II, Power Girl, Superman I, Nuklon, Atom I, Wonder Woman I, Fury, Silver Scarab.

9.15.8: Magnus Labs, home to the Metal Men.

9.15.9: Infinity Inc. Headquarters, I believe.

9.15.10: The Wayne Foundation Building, where Bruce Wayne lived at the time.

9.15.11: Dayton Industries, HQ for the Doom Patrol.

9.15.13: There are seven transport pads. From left to right, they hold: the Metal Men, JSA, Titans, Doom Patrol, Outsiders, JLA, Infinity Inc. Each also holds various independents.

9.16.1: Infinity Inc.: Wildcat II, Power Girl, Obsidian, Huntress II, Silver Scarab, Nuklon, Star-Spangled Kid.

9.16.3: Gold, Iron, Tin, Lead, Platinum, Mercury.

9.16.4: Robotman II, Tempest, Negative Woman, Celsius, Mento.

9.16.6: JLA and associates: Martian Manhunter, Lady Quark, Creeper, S2, Hawkman II, Vibe.

9.16.7: Outsiders and associates: Katana, Metamorpho, Batman II, Robin III, Geo-Force, Halo.

9.16.9: Titans and associates: Red Star, Speedy II, Hawk, Dove, Aquagirl.

9.16.14: JSA and associates: Wonder Woman I, Harlequin, Hawkman I.

9.16.16: JLA and associates: Steel, Atom II, Aquaman, Mera.

9.17.3: Harbinger, Doctor Magnus, L4, Shiera Hall?, Dale Gunn.

9.17.8: 60% villain loss, 80% hero loss, hmm...

9.18.1: Earth-4 was assigned to the Titans, the Doom Patrol, and (perhaps) the Seven Soldiers of Victory.

9.18.3: Trickster and Riddler get decked by the Changeling.

9.18.6: The Masters of Disaster: Heatstroke, Coldsnap, Shakedown, New-Wave.

9.18.7: Cat-Man, Cyborg, Shaggy Man. 5 to 1 losses, plus the percentages above, means the villains outnumber the heroes by 6.67 to 1. (Hey, I was a math major....)

9.18.8: Speedy II, Shaggy Man again. (Speedy was miscolored as Green Arrow I in the original, corrected in the collection.)

9.18.9: Negative Woman and Lady Lunar up top, Red Star, Negative Woman's real body, Dragon King.

9.19.1: Evil Star, Red Star.

9.19.7: Shark, Aquagirl, Black Manta, Aqualad.

9.20.1: Earth-S, assignment of the JLA and the Metal Men.

9.20.2: Punch, Black Canary II, Green Arrow II, Jewelee.

9.20.3: Cheetah I, Mirror Master, Lead, Plasmus, IBAC?, Bug-Eyed Bandit.

9.20.4: Hawkman II, Starro, Superman II.

9.20.5: Sinestro, Elongated Man.

9.20.6: Plasmus, Steel, Warp.

9.21.5: Queen Bee, Creeper, Lady Quark, Mercury, Firestorm, Mano, Zatanna, Validus, Penguin, Killer Frost. That's one heck of an umbrella, Penguin.

9.21.6: Eclipso, Iron, Wonder Woman II, Copperhead, Clock King.

9.21.7: Ocean Master, Aquaman, Captain Cold, Icicle, Mera.

9.22.2: Golden Glider and her brother, Captain Cold, fellow Rogue's Gallery member Weather Wizard, and Killer Frost.

9.22.6: Earth-X, designated target for the JSA, Infinity Inc., and the Outsiders.

9.22.8: Silver Ghost, Floronic Man, Poison Ivy, Black Condor, Doll Man, Joker, Uncle Sam, Phantom Lady, Human Bomb, Firebrand I.

9.23.4: "For every big-shot on your side, we've got five more ready to fight for us." ...More or less.

9.23.5: Mister Mind. On the screen, Fury, Silver Scarab, Starman I, Halo, Hawkman I.

9.23.6: Captain Nazi, Superman I, Samurai?, Katana, Scarecrow.

9.23.7: Wildcat II, Cheshire, Doctor Mid-Nite.

9.23.8: Doctor Phosphorus, Northwind, Hawkman I, Blockbuster, unknown.

9.23.9-10: At the time, the Powers That Were were uncertain as to whether Hawkman I should be killed off, so they just critically wounded him.

9.24.1: E4: Kobra, Solomon Grundy, Mento, Black Spider, Hawk, Fiddler.

9.24.2: ES: Lightning Lord, Gold, Hyena, Gypsy, Kanjar Ro.

9.24.3: EX: Thunderbolt, Mist, Halo, Star Sapphire, Shadow Thief, Obsidian.

9.24.7: Note that Brainiac has said nothing since 9.21.6.

9.25.6: Psimon and Gizmo were in the Fearsome Five together.

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Jonathan Woodward,

All original content is copyright Jonathan Woodward. Legal minutiae here.