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Superman: Infinite Crisis
April 2006 — April 2006
Writers Marv Wolfman, Geoff Johns, Joe Kelly
Artists Dan Jurgens, Phil Jimenez, Jerry Ordway, Ivan Reis, Howard Chaykin, Renato Guedes, Ed Benes, Ian Churchill, Tom Derenick, Renato Guedes, Lee Beamejo, Doug Mahnke, Karl Kerschl, Duncan Rouleau, Ed McGuinness, Dale Eaglesham
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Superman: Infinite Crisis is a story arc that ran through the Infinite Crisis event.

The series storyline was a sequel to DC's 1985 limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths. It revisited characters and concepts from that earlier Crisis, including the existence of DC's Multiverse. Some of the characters featured were alternate versions of comic icons such as an alternate Superman named Kal-L, who came from a place called Earth-Two. A major theme was the nature of heroism, contrasting the often dark and conflicted modern-day heroes with memories of "lighter" and ostensibly more noble and collegial heroes of American comic books' earlier days.

Infinite Crisis serves as the end of the post-Crisis On Infinite Earths era, and begins a new continuity that retains elements from the history of the DC universe, while allowing for a number of altered events.

The story of Superman's origins are told for the first time in the six-part mini-series, Superman: Secret Origin.

Infinite Crisis Secret Files and Origins

Infinite Crisis Secret Files and Origins 1.jpg

  • Date: April 2006
  • Written by Marv Wolfman
  • Pencils: Dan Jurgens

Alexander Luthor of Earth-Three sits in limbo meditating. He has a vision of multiple Earths, describes how the timeless dimension he inhabits works, and recounts his brief life.

Elsewhere in the void, Superman of Earth-Two has recreated The Daily Star in an effort to rekindle the spirits of his ailing wife, Lois Lane. Superboy of Earth-Prime interrupts, looking to speak to Superman about the anger he's been feeling. The two look on at New Earth, consoled in the fact that their homes are gone, and watching a facsimile from a distance is the best they have.

As Superboy relives some moments from his life on Earth-Prime, Alex joins him and they recount the events of the first Crisis that resulted in the ends of their worlds. After going over the events in his head again and again, Alex is convinced that everything he thought that was true, is in fact a lie.

As Lois's health wanes, Superman becomes convinced that it's this realm that is killing her. Alex shows Superboy a number of events that have transpired in the one remaining Earth, that he believes have not transpired correctly. In an effort to save Lois, and restore the "proper" Earth, they decide to leave limbo.

Superboy smashes down the walls holding them in their purgatory, recreating the multiverse and freeing them from the void.

Infinite Crisis #5

Infinite Crisis 5.jpg

  • Date: April 2006
  • Written by Geoff Johns
  • Pencils: Phil Jimenez, Jerry Ordway, Ivan Reis
  • Inks: Andy Lanning, Jerry Ordway, Art Thibert
  • Colors: Jeromy Cox, Guy Major, Rod Reis
  • Cover by George Pérez, Jim Lee

As a group of superheroes left on what's now called Earth-One gather together for a "memorial service" and the group of heroes that's been transplanted to the newly-restored Earth-Two now wonder where they are, Kal-L briefly rejoices in that he has saved his wife Lois Lane Kent until she collapses, the rest of her life force ebbing away from her. Mournful, Kal-L screams, which attracts the attention of Kal-El who flies over to Earth-Two to try comforting his elder counterpart. Kal-L attacks Kal-El, blaming him for the death of his wife, while Alexander Luthor watches from his Earth-splitting machine, knowing all the while that Lois Lane Kent wasn't going to survive.

Meanwhile, Wonder Woman of New Earth tries to stop a riot taking place, with citizens fleeing in fear of her being a known killer, when her Earth-Two counterpart intervenes, taking her to Earth-Two to try reasoning with both Supermen. The Earth-Two Wonder Woman also tries to tell her younger counterpart that her mission is over and that she needs to start acting human. As Earth-Two Wonder Woman and her invisible jet vanish into nothingness, New Earth Wonder Woman appears before a devastated Metropolis on Earth-Two, seeing that it's the fight between the two Supermen that's destroying it. She lassos Kal-L in order to get him to stop fighting and listen to reason, but Kal-L is still pointing the finger at her, Kal-El, and New Earth Batman for their failing to create a "perfect Earth" -- to which Kal-El answers that "a perfect Earth doesn't need a Superman". It is there that Kal-L stops fighting and instead flies over to where the body of his dead wife is to hold her one last time.

In the Batcave, Booster Gold enters with Jaime Reyes, introducing him to the Dark Knight as the new Blue Beetle, even getting him to transform into that identity to prove it. Batman then brings Booster and Beetle to where the Bug is parked, to a small gathering of heroes selected for taking on Brother Eye. In outer space in the center of the universe, Firestorm reforms again, this time with Professor Stein as the guiding partner. At the Earth-splitting machine, Alexander Luthor uses Brother-Eye to direct a beam of energy toward Kal-L, who screams as he is now being used to create multitudes of parallel Earths, which now pull other superheroes originally native to those worlds away from Earth-One. Nightwing watches from Titans Tower, empty of all its heroes as they are called to attend other matters, as the multiple Earths appear in the sky, some of which are exploding. Connor Kent, who is now restored from his encounter with Superboy-Prime, shows up to help Nightwing take down Alexander Luthor and his Earth-splitting machine, with a crystal given to him by his "father" Lex Luthor that shows where the machine is located.

In Japan, the Flash shows up to warn Dr. Light that Superboy-Prime has escaped and is now coming.

Superman #226

Superman 226.jpg

  • Date: April 2006
  • Written by Joe Kelly
  • Pencils: Jerry Ordway, Howard Chaykin, Renato Guedes, Ed Benes
  • Inks: Mariah Benes, Howard Chaykin, Renato Guedes, Jerry Ordway
  • Colors: Renato Guedes, Michelle Madsen, Rod Reis
  • Cover by Ed McGuinness

Superman of New Earth fights with the Superman of Earth-Two in the skies of Metropolis above the Daily Star on Earth-Two. With each crushing blow, each man lives the life of the other.

Kal-El sees the events of World War II through Kal-L's eyes, and decides to act. He vows to end the war, and heads off to confront Hitler, only to be stopped by the Spear of Destiny. Later, we see him standing in front of a concentration camp, vowing that this will never happen again. Later, we see Kal-El on a date with the Lois Lane of Earth Two, where he says "This is not my life, but if she's here, I can make it mine." Kal-El notes that on Earth-Two, everything is simple. After Lois informs him that the JSA is on the stand in front of H.U.A.C., he confronts them and reveals his identity.

Meanwhile, on Earth-One, Lois Lane stands on the roof of the Daily Planet building. She can see the corona of Earth-Two high in the sky. She whispers words of guidance for Superman, knowing that he cannot hear her. Finally she says, "I love you", as we see different versions of Lois that existed throughout the Multiverse.

Action Comics #836

Action Comics 836.jpg

  • Date: April 2006
  • Written by Joe Kelly
  • Pencils: Dan Jurgens, Ed Benes, Ian Churchill, Phil Jimenez, Tom Derenick, Renato Guedes, Lee Beamejo, Doug Mahnke
  • Inks: Kevin Conrad, Dick Giordano, José Marzan, Jr., Norm Rapmund, Andy Lanning, Drew Geraci
  • Colors: Guy Major, Dave Stewart, Renato Guedes
  • Cover by Mark Schultz, Dave McCaig

The two Supermen of New Earth and Earth-Two continue to battle one another in the skies over Metropolis on Earth-Two. As they fight, they experience the life of the other, and show how they would have handled decisions differently.

Kal-L experiences Kal-El's first meeting with Lois Lane (Man of Steel #1), then sees the first meeting with Batman (Man of Steel #3). Unlike Kal-El, Kal-L immediately identifies that Batman's bomb is not on an innocent civilian, but on Batman himself. After detonating the bomb safely, he offers Batman a partnership, which Batman accepts.

Flash forward, to Superman, kneeling in front of Luthor, who has his Kryptonite ring. Batman appears, taking Luthor down, then Superman reveals that Luthor has cancer from the Kryptonite ring. Kal-L offers Luthor a cure for his cancer, on the condition that he uses his brains and wealth to make the world a better place.

Superman flashes forward again a few years, to when he not only proposes to Lois, but also reveals his secret identity to her as well. Then, it jumps to Earth-Two, where we see Kal-El in the same situation.

Kal-L flash forwards several more years, and witnesses Kal-El's fight against Doomsday. Unlike the Modern Superman, however, he rises after dropping Doomsday, declaring that "When Superman dies, the heart of the world stops."

Kal-L jumps forward again in time, to the events referenced in Identity Crisis. While the League is still arguing over what the do with Dr. Light, Kal-L appears, and sentences him to the Phantom Zone.

As time goes on, the League becomes uncomfortable with Kal-L's actions, and they make a move to stop him; he is prepared however, and the Justice League Elite team stop them.

Meanwhile in a bar in Metropolis on New Earth, we see Jimmy Olsen talking to some friends about the crisis that is currently going on with Superman's Pal backing up the Big Blue. Suddenly, his bar stool breaks and he falls, when he hits the floor, as before, we see different versions of Jimmy Olsen that have existed throughout the Multiverse.

Adventures of Superman #649

Adventures of Superman 649.jpg

  • Date: April 2006
  • Written by Joe Kelly
  • Pencils: Ed Benes, Tom Derenick, Karl Kerschl, Duncan Rouleau, Ed McGuinness, Dale Eaglesham
  • Inks: Mariah Benes, Wayne Faucher, Drew Geraci, Dexter Vines
  • Colors: Tanya Horie, Richard Horie, Rod Reis
  • Cover by Ivan Reis, Marc Campos

Superman of Earth-One and Superman of Earth-Two clash with one another. With each crushing blow, they individually experience the life memories of the other. They perceive each others' realities as they would have lived them.

On Earth-One, Kal-L and his Justice League Elite sentences several villains to the Phantom Zone. Maxwell Lord secretly monitors the JLE's activities and decides that they have grown to powerful and corrupt. Wonder Woman recognizes the threat that the League may evolve into and agrees that her fellow Amazons and she will follow Maxwell Lord should he choose to take action. Lord activates the OMACs and sends them out to sanction known super-heroes.

Lex Luthor betrays his allies in the League and releases all of the previously captured villains from the Phantom Zone. They soon become host forms for the OMACs and begin devastating the Earth.

Meanwhile, on Earth-Two, Kal-El and Power Girl are the only superheroes remaining. They have worked together and eliminated virtually all crime worldwide, but when the Anti-Monitor appears, there is no way to stop him. Kal-El goes to confront him anyway, saying "I am the good. The right. Time and again I have proven that no problems exists that I can't handle. Alone", only to be defeated in two hits. It is at this point that he remembers what Batman told him in Infinite Crisis #1 - "The last time you inspired anyone was when you died."

Both Supermen continue to pummel one another despite the disturbing influx of memories. Kal-L declares that the Modern Earth is a cancer, while Kal-El decides that Earth-2 was stillborn, and that its morality was just an empty shell. Each declares that the other's earth cannot be allowed to survive. The fight then continues as a great rift of chronal energy begins to circle around them.