Wednesday, May 09, 2007


Not Your Father's Multiverse

Or mine, really. But I wouldn't mind trying out a new model, at that.

I meant to mention this yesterday, and got tied up in the last act of Iron Jaw and Hummingbird. In an interview over on Newsarama, Grant Morrison talks about about the new DC multiverse, the "Megaverse," which debuted last week in the final issue of 52.
And the parallel Earths you see in issue #52 are not the familiar pre-Crisis versions. If you think you recognize and know any of these worlds from before, you'd be wrong. We all wanted to do something new with the multiple Earths so what you've already seen in 52 is simply the tip of the iceberg - each parallel world now has its own huge new backstory and characters and each could basically form the foundation for a complete line of new books. If you like the ongoing soap opera dynamics of New Earth, you can watch Mary Marvel turning to the dark side as her skirt gets shorter and shorter, or you can buy the Earth 5 line of books featuring more iconic versions of the Marvel Family. If you miss Vic Sage as the Question, you should be able to follow the adventures of Vic's counterpart on the Charlton/Watchmen world of Earth 4.

The idea behind the Megaverse is to basically create a number of big new franchise possibilities. It's like having several comics companies and universes under one umbrella, so, as I say, there could be one book or a whole line of books spinning out of the new Earth 10 (I handled that particular revamp, so I can tell you that the original concept of the Freedom Fighters on a world where the Nazis won World War 2 has been greatly reconsidered, expanded and intensified into something that's a bit more Wagnerian and apocalyptic and a bit more adult) That's how I'd like to see the Megaverse played out as we move forward. And no crossovers! Each of the parallel universes should exist in its own separate stream with no contact from the others - not until we have a story worthy of bringing them together.
Of course, in all fairness, I was quite excited about Hypertime when it was first announced, too, so I'm understandably reserving judgement on this. (Still, if you haven't been following this, the fact that the new Earth 10 looks quite a bit like the old Earth X is a very clever bit of business, if you consider the Roman numeral involved. And Earth S as Earth 5? All you've got to do is round out that corners a bit...)

OK -- I'll give this a chance. Nice to have some semblance of the old multiverse back, since I'm an alternate world maven. That's what I regretted most about the original Crisis -- the elimination of all those wonderful concepts and stories to one Earth.

The Stu of Earth 2 agrees with me.
Unfortunately, a few times now they've reintroduced the concept or similarly fun ones (Hypertime, DC One Million, etc), but haven't had a great track record of doing much interesting with them. Really Morrison is the one who's made best use of them (though Waid and Busiek have gotten some good mileage out of them as well, as did Karl Kesel in a brief Superboy arc). I've got my fingers crossed, but I'm not laying any money on the table...
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