The Annotated Crisis on Infinite Earths

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Issue #4, July '85: "And Thus Shall The World Die!"

Wolfman, Pérez, DeCarlo

Plot Summary: The anti-matter wave continues to engulf E1 and E2. While Pariah manages to save Lady Quark from E6, the Monitor creates Doctor Light II to help in the defeat of the foe, and Red Tornado II is collected by the foe to help defeat the Monitor. In all eras, the shadow demons meld and form into giant shadows, and attempt to destroy the vibrational forks, but are stopped by the heroes. Pariah comes to the Monitor's satellite, just in time to witness Harbinger killing the Monitor. E1 and E2 are destroyed by anti-matter.

cover

4.Cover: Harbinger, Monitor, Pariah, and a very convenient arrow. (The arrow does not appear in the collection.) Note the veiwscreens, showing disintegrating Earths.

4.1: It's still July. If the weather is people's greatest concern, the anti-matter wave must be moving very slowly. This in fact appears to be the case. For those of you not up on the pre-Crisis Supergirl, she was born in a community of refugee Kryptonians who lived on a slab of kryptonite, from which they were protected by a sheet of lead. When meteors pierced the lead, she was rocketed to Earth just in time. Her reference to "my planet crumbling" is thus not literally true. The "Barbara" referred to is Batgirl.

4.2: Batgirl's crisis of faith here remained a major part of her character through her crippling in The Killing Joke. Her inability to help, or to save the doomed Supergirl, made her wonder if she deserved to wear the Bat-costume.

4.3.8: Steve Dayton used to be Mento of the original Doom Patrol. Changeling is his adopted son.

4.4.1: Yes, Vertigo-readers, that clean-cut gent in the ugly tie is John Constantine, the Hellblazer. At the time he was a supporting character in Swamp Thing. I don't know whether his friendship with Dayton was established prior to this.

4.4.2-3: Constantine seems to know a great deal; more than he would currently be expected to. His powers were quite nebulous back then.

4.4.6: "After that, only four others remain." Another indication that the Charlton characters were still in a state of editorial uncertainty. The four mentioned must be E1, E2, ES, and EX, all of which were already major parts of DC continuity at this time. So, where's E4? The decision to save it was made after this issue was written.

4.4.8: Pariah's question is answered (in part) later this issue.

4.5-7: See also 4½.3, where these pages are retold.

4.5.1: Pariah's comments on the uniqueness of E6 are interesting, but not well supported by the facts. EX and E1 have no duplicated heroes, for example. If he's referring to no duplicated people at all, we later find this is false. [shrug]

4.5.2: The first appearance of Lady Quark.

4.5.5: Pariah has never exhibited this particular power before.

4.6.7: Princess Fern (name from WW13.8).

4.6.12: Princess Fern dies.

4.7.3: Lord Volt dies.

4.7.6: Pariah finally tries to save someone, to his credit.

4.7.22: Earth-6 dies.

4.8.1: Harbinger is still threatening viewscreens, as on the last page of last issue.

4.8.3: The Vegan star system is home to the Omega Men, a team of freedom-fighters not seen in several years as of 1996.

4.8.9: The first appearance of Doctor Kimiyo Hoshi, soon to be Doctor Light II.

4.9.8: The caption directs the reader to Omega Men #26.

4.10.4-6: The "nested monitor" technique is a little-used, but effective one. I believe its first appearance was in Uncanny X-Men #97.

4.11.4: Note that the teleportation effect surrounding Red Tornado II is the same as the glow surrounding F2 when we last saw him last issue.

4.11.6: To answer PP2's question, Red Tornado II is an android inhabited by a living tornado spirit.

4.12.1: We finally find out what happened to the last two superhumans of the 15 the Monitor gathered.

4.12.4: Vandal Savage, in a cameo role.

4.12.6: The Shining Knight will in a few years (by his timeline) travel to the 1940s and become a member of the ASQ, but he hasn't yet. Winged Victory is his horse.

4.13.2: Why do the shadows make Vandal Savage think he might have been wrong?

4.13.3: Those shadows were a lot tougher when you last encountered them, Firestorm, so how do you know these are weaker? Pick pick pick...

4.13.5: Firehawk is Firestorm's female equivalent. Black Bison is a Firestorm villain with a rather odd fashion sense.

4.14.3: The shadows' resemblance to the Monitor is particularly pronounced here.

4.14.5-6: The shadows only appear to be manifesting in the vicinity of the vibrational forks, so the universe-wide terror-stricken multitudes are apparently reacting to the red skies and anti-matter wave, not to what we-the-readers are seeing.

4.14.5-8: The Old West, ancient Atlantis, the future of Kamandi, Markovia 1944.

4.14.9-12: Crossing panels, Johnny Thunder II, Bat Lash, Firebrand II, Jonah Hex, Cyborg, Arion, Lady Chian, Obsidian, Dawnstar, S1, Kamandi, Lt. Jeb Stuart, Bulldozer of Easy Company, Sgt. Rock, Doctor Polaris, Geo-Force.

4.15.1: Metamorpho, Nightwing, Jericho, Batman II, Kole. The sixth tower begins to appear.

4.15.2: Superman II, Wonder Girl, Starfire II, Changeling, Halo.

4.15.5: The original Doctor Light is a criminal, so the costume inspires no particular trust.

4.16.3: Black Lightning, Katana.

4.16.5: The pre-Crisis S2 was fluent in every Earth language, and many alien ones.

4.17.10: The Monitor's satellite is an unusual place for Pariah to materialize, and one has to wonder where he dropped off Lady Quark. (That is, one had to wonder, but this question was finally answered in Crisis 4.5.)

4.18.1: "...constructed... just prior to the day you were cursed." This is an exceptionally interesting revelation, as we'll see when Pariah's origin is revealed.

4.18.3-5: Another key point - Monitor was responsible for Pariah's curse.

4.19.2: Firebrand II and Cyborg up top, Johnny Thunder II, Bat Lash, and Scalphunter below. The Old West.

4.19.3: Unknown Atlantean, Lori Lemaris, Ronal, Dolphin. Modern-day E1 Atlantis.

4.19.4: Dawnstar, shadow demon, S1. The future of Kamandi.

4.19.5: Zatanna, Blue Devil, Hawkman II, Air Wave II, Hawkwoman. Modern-day E1.

4.19.6: Geo-Force, shadow demon, Doctor Polaris. 1944 Markovia.

4.20.1: Northwind, GL1, Jade, Starman I. Modern-day E2.

4.20.3: Swamp Thing II.

4.20.4: Shadow demon. Halo, Metamorpho, Starfire II. Modern-day E1.

4.20.5: Shrinking Violet, Star Boy, Ultra Boy, Dream Girl, Brainiac 5. The future of the LSH.

4.20.6: Note that the vibrational fork is a reversed stat of the fork on page 19. I guess even Pérez can grow tired of drawing high-tech widgetry.

4.21.3: "Heroes have morals. Villains have work ethic." -Peter David

4.21.4: The Monitor must have been one heck of a chess-player.

4.21.10: The Monitor dies.

4.22.5: The machines are activated automatically - which contradicts Harbinger's earlier request that the heroes "protect them [and] engage them on our command".

4.22.6-12: I find Pariah's soliloquy quite effective.

4.23: Crossing panels, ignoring Pariah, we have Arion, Lady Chian, Obsidian, unknown, Firestorm (on back of horse), Shining Knight, Killer Frost, GL3, Firebrand II, Bat Lash, Jonah Hex, Scalphunter, Sgt. Rock, Geo-Force, unknown Nazi, two unknown Haunted Tank members, unknown member of Easy Company, Doctor Polaris, Halo, S2, Starfire II, Wonder Girl, Changeling, Doctor Light II, Kamandi, S1, Dawnstar.

4.24: What you see here isn't what you think it is.

4.25: The universes of Earth-1 and Earth-2 die.

4.Letter Column: "It doesn't make any difference what Earth [Blue Beetle] and his fellow 'Charlton' heroes were on. It ain't there no more... More on [these characters] as our plans are firmed up."

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