The Annotated Crisis on Infinite Earths

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Issue #3, June '85: "Oblivion Upon Us"

Wolfman, Pérez, Giordano

Plot Summary: The Monitor studies L4, and discovers that he contains both matter and anti-matter within him. Flash II sees the anti-matter wave come to future Earth, and travels back to the 20th Century to warn other heroes. Upon arriving, he barely has time to say that "everything's unraveling" before vanishing. Brainiac, studying the anti-matter, decides he must save the universe to preserve his own life, and goes to gather L2. Meanwhile, in all eras, heroes fight and die to defend the Monitor's devices from the shadow demons, and battle the effects of the anti-matter wave. On the last page, Monitor is about to initiate his plan when Harbinger confronts him, announcing her intent to kill him.

cover

3.Cover: Clockwise from top, the Monitor, Dream Girl, Kid Psycho, Starfire II, Halo, Kole, Changeling (miscolored), Katana, Nightwing, Batman II, Jericho, Flash II, Sgt. Rock and Easy Company, Blue Beetle, the Losers, the Haunted Tank, Geo-Force, Doctor Polaris, Scalphunter, Cyborg, Bat Lash, Johnny Thunder II, Jonah Hex, Nighthawk, GL3, Firebrand II, Psimon, Brainiac 5, Wildfire, Lightning Lass, Sun Boy, Cosmic Boy.

3.1: "In the space of days..." is either an error, or an indication that time is a little weird on the Monitor's satellite (which is manifestly true).

3.2.2: Like many of the Monitor's questions, this one is never answered.

3.2.12-14: The Monitor knows she does the foe's bidding, and he's also planning on it.

3.3.3: The white-on-black print is very hard to read on my copy, so I'll provide "translation". "Silence, Psycho-Pirate. Your meaningless prattle annoys me. Harbinger, I know why you are here. Indeed, I know all as soon as the Monitor himself thinks it." Another indication of how closely linked the Monitor and his foe are. His claim of omniscience proves false.

3.3.4: "Destroy the Luthor child. The dead can present no threat."

3.3.5: "Now go, and do as I command." For no clear reason, she doesn't obey him.

3.3.8: "Keep your emotion-controlling powers to yourself, Psycho-Pirate. Harbinger will do as I require." Note that he says "require" not "command".

3.3.9: "Before long, she will slay the Monitor." Perhaps he's not really interested in the death of L4?

3.3.10: "And that alone is enough reason for me to keep her alive!"

3.4-5: See also 4½.6, where these pages are retold.

3.4.1: Flash II, living happily in the future with his resurrected wife, Iris. The caption directs us to Flash #350.

3.4.7: The anti-matter wave reaches the ground on E1.

3.5.3: F2 only stays in the future by an effort of will; by relaxing his internal vibrations, he can return to his home era.

3.5.5: It's still July.

3.5.6: The Empire State Building, in New York City.

3.5.7: Starfire II and Halo.

3.5.8: The green bird is Changeling, a shapeshifter.

3.5.10: The Outsiders and the Titans. Left to right, Jericho, Nightwing, Black Lightning, Kole, Wonder Girl, Katana, Metamorpho, Starfire II, Halo. Metamorpho's line is an awkward self-introduction, but we'll see worse.

3.6.2: Metamorpho is also a shapeshifter, of a different sort.

3.6.4: Starfire II is an alien.

3.7.8: Superman II, faster than a speeding bullet.

3.8.3: I don't know why S2 wouldn't be in New York.

3.8.5: At this time, I believe Batman II still led the Outsiders.

3.8.9: The Pre-Crisis Superman II was far more Krypton-obsessed than the 1996 version.

3.9.4: The glow is caused by the foe's attempts to teleport F2 away.

3.9.6: Batman II is always prepared to sacrifice his life to save another's, but Jericho knows that they can't afford to lose both F2 and Batman II.

3.10.1: Brainiac, formerly a Coluan android, now a living computer. One wonders how he could have predicted the anti-matter wave when the Guardians couldn't.

3.10.7-8: A nice touch in this series is how so many villains fought on the side of good.

3.11.2: This is the fictional country of Markovia, home of Geo-Force. Technically, this is E2, while Geo-Force is from E1, but the difference is glossed over.

3.11.5: Sgt. Rock and Wildman of Easy Company. Other members of Easy who show up are Bulldozer, Four-Eyes, Farmer Boy, Little Sure Shot, Jackie Johnson, and the Ice Cream Soldier. Farmer Boy is referred to here as "Flower", and some sources say that this is not Farmer Boy, but another member of Easy who looks identical.

3.11.7: The Haunted Tank, watched over by the spirit of Confederate General J. E. B. Stuart. The flag is to appease him; the living crew are all "Damn Yankees". It's commanded by the General's namesake, Lt. Jeb Stuart. Cpl. Gus Gray and Pvt. Rick Rawlins are also mentioned.

3.11.8: The snow is another "natural disaster". The "oversized cockroach" is Blue Beetle's Bug.

3.12.1: "That always spells trouble for this Haunted Tank!" An exceptionally awkward self-introduction.

3.12.2: The "losers" in question will be here in a minute.

3.12.6: Another bad apostrophe.

3.13.9: Doctor Polaris' expression here is interesting.

3.14.1: The "new weapon" they have heard rumors of may be the atomic bomb.

3.14.3: The Losers, WW2's hard luck heroes. Johnny Cloud, Sarge, Gunner, and Captain Storm.

3.15.4: Little Sure Shot, Sgt. Rock, Geo-Force, Jackie Johnson.

3.15.5: Sgt. Rock is referring to the All-Star Squadron, which didn't get involved in WW2 directly.

3.15.9: Ice Cream Soldier, Lt. Jeb Stuart, Farmer Boy.

3.16.1: Gunner dies.

3.16.2: Sarge dies.

3.16.3: Johnny Cloud dies.

3.16.4: Captain Storm dies. The Losers die.

3.16.5: Ice Cream Soldier?, Wildman, Sgt. Rock, unknown Haunted Tank member, Farmer Boy, Lt. Jeb Stuart, Little Sure Shot. Note the snow has stopped.

3.16.8: Farmer Boy dies. (Or maybe it's "Flower".

3.17.5: According to WW, Garrett didn't give Kord the scarab. Minor continuity error.

3.18.6: The "other wounded one" is Solovar, as we'll soon see. When this was written, the status of Blue Beetle and the other Charlton heroes was still up in the air at DC. (Remember, Watchmen was in development at this same time.) It's possible we were never supposed to see Blue Beetle again.

3.18.13: His injuries were not apparent last issue. Note Solovar's name is spelled correctly.

3.19.3: Kamandi does indeed have changes in his future, but I don't know how Solovar could have seen them. Regardless, it's a nice scene.

3.20.9: Top to bottom, Scalphunter, Johnny Thunder II, Nighthawk, Jonah Hex, Bat Lash. Most of DC's Western heroes.

3.21.4: Presumably Monitor implanted the names. In most eras, he tried to gather the local heroes to assist in guarding the vibrational forks.

3.21.11: Jonah Hex, Bat Lash, Cinnamon, and Scalphunter met GL2 (Hal Jordan) and some other Justice Leaguers in JLA #198-199, courtesy of the Lord of Time.

3.21.5: Psimon nearly dies here, but he's saved (and teleported away) by Brainiac and L2.

3.22.9-10: GL3's ring is being disrupted by the attack on the Guardians seen earlier.

3.23.2: The "high-pitched whine" may be the vibrational fork activating.

3.23.4: The anti-matter wave comes to another era.

3.23.5: "Never did trust mechanical things!" Nighthawk is a "fix-em-up" man in his secret ID, so this is either irony or error.

3.23.16: Nighthawk dies.

3.24.1: And another era...

3.24.2: Wildfire, Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lass, Sun Boy.

3.24.4: Brainiac 5, Dream Girl.

3.24.5: Dream Girl is a precognitive.

3.24.7: Kid Psycho. He was introduced in 1965, but he'd been a reserve, little-seen member of the LSH for many years by this time.

3.24.8: Element Lad and Mon-El.

3.24.13: Kid Psycho dies.

3.25.8: Harbinger threatens the Monitor. This scene, as scripted and drawn, is inconsistent with the next issue, so at the last minute the three panels down the middle were given curved corners to indicate that Harbinger was watching the Monitor through a viewscreen. It didn't work very well.

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