Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Week 44: One Hundred Questions, One Hat

A very big week for comic books--this wasn't even the best single issue featuring a cover with a red, white and black palette that involves a mythological figure and bloodshed. (Actually, as soon as I typed that sentence, I remembered this cover... but he's real--!) Still, there's also been a lot of talk this week about the future of Superhero Pamphlets As We Know Them--the general feeling of burnout, the event fatigue, the lack of FUN!!!, the sense of franchises being "wheeled along the hallway until they expire" (that's a paraphrase of some blogger this week, and I wish I could remember who) [EDITED TO ADD: it was actually not a blogger but Blue Beetle's John Rogers over at Comicbloc! He put it better, too], the kneecapped momentum of virtually every major non-52 superhero project of the past year, the atmosphere of slowly cooling nostalgia that hovers over the landscape. (Of the ongoing DCU series about solo characters that DC's publishing in March, the most recently introduced character name is Firestorm--who first appeared in 1978. Team book title? Birds of Prey, 1996.)

Someone asked me a few weeks ago what monthly comics I really adore and actively look forward to every month at this point, in an "oh boy this is the week [x] comes out" way--not stuff I'm just sort of following, or that occasionally gives me the buzz I'm hoping for, or like just fine but am happy to wait for the trade for--and my answer was a painfully short list. I do get that feeling about 52 (and that anticipatory feeling about Countdown), but as far as monthlies go: Daredevil and Criminal for sure. The Spirit is getting there. If The Brave and the Bold stays on schedule and as energetic as its first issue, then that. All-Star Superman is like a little blessing from the sky every time it appears, although nobody could call it monthly. Detective when Paul Dini's writing it. And already I'm answering a question other than the one that was asked. (I'm curious to hear what you folks' answers to that question are, too.)

This week's issue of 52, I'm afraid, falls into the part-of-the-problem category. Aside from Azraeuz's silence--so much more effectively scary than the other Horsemen's disquisitions!--the Black Adam sequence is just one long, gory device to hit story beats (Tawky Crawky gets his jaw dislocated; Isis dies of chestnut blight, after telling Adam he was right to dismember bad guys after all). It has plot consequences, but no real emotional or thematic consequences. Having never been given much of a sense of Isis, other than that she handed out flowers and freed orphans and stuff, it's hard for me to feel any particular loss as a reader.

Actually, I'm wondering if there's some kind of subtext to all this on-page krakoomery that I'm missing. This week's Civil War addenda, for instance, make it clear that what that project was about, above the basic plot level, is the idea that the military-industrial complex (Iron Man, the "pro-reg" side) has used tragedy and fear (the New Warriors, the new Thunderbolts) to destroy the spirit of America (Captain America, the "anti-reg" side). Does 52 have significant themes that aren't, as Wikipedia puts it, "in-universe"?

There's an interesting bit here about what part of Osiris was mythologically eaten by a crocodile. Otherwise, there's very little else in this issue to talk about this week (although Montoya finally gets her hat!)--so, especially since one of DC's eight house ads this week (!) makes a point of featuring Rip Hunter's chalkboard, I think it's time for THE CANONICAL LIST OF 52 DANGLING PLOT THREADS. I've left out things that are obviously just inconsistencies (like the "is Sierra the same person as Jade or not" question, or the mess around how Luthor's Everyman Project tech works), and tried to mention only things that are deliberate-looking glitches, if you see what I mean. And yes, it's a nice round number: it just worked out that way.

So here are the plot points whose resolution has been teased but not yet delivered (as far as I can tell; please correct me where I'm wrong):

1. What's the significance of the number 52 itself, and why does it turn up everywhere?
2. What's the significance of the swirling mass of fragments on the first two pages of the first issue?
3. Whoever's talking to Ralph at the beginning of Week 1 talks about the Monster Society (rather than the Secret Society); why? (I could write this one off as a mistake, but I suspect the series' fifth line of dialogue is unlikely to be a mistake, especially in light of the self-identified Monster Society showing up this week.)
4. Does the Booster we see in 52 postdate the Booster who went back home to the future in Infinite Crisis?
5. What happened to the timeline in 52 that makes it different from the one Booster remembers?
6. What went wrong with Skeets, and when?
7. Who sent the would-be suicide bomber to Kahndaq in Week 1? Intergang didn't yet have their grudge against Adam then.
8. Where are Wally and Linda? (This is sort of more an OYL question, but since it's brought up in Week 1...)
9. Why did Charlie pick Montoya for... whatever it is he picked her for? ("That's the question, isn't it?" is not an answer.)
10. What's the significance of "artificial souls"?
11. What exactly happened with the "missing 52 seconds," and what are they protecting?
12. Flight 2824/Flight 2428: what's up with that?
13. How did the Superboy cult get their hands on all that genuine-looking Kryptonian gear? (I'm guessing Felix Faust didn't have access to it, although he appears to have been the one who pointed Ralph toward it.)
14. Who's Devem? Does he have ties to Dev-Em?
15. What was going on with Mr. Mind in his cocoon in Sivana's lab/as a result of being bombarded with suspendium radiation?
16. What got Charlie interested in the 520 Kane case in the first place?
17. What is Intergang up to? Why would they want to "invade" Gotham City, anyhow? Where are they getting their Kirbytech and beast-man tech? What's their connection to Kahndaq?
18. How did Hawkgirl get huge? How did she get back to normal size?
19. How did Cyborg and Firestorm get fused, and how did they get un-fused?
20. What happaned to Adam Strange's eyes?
21. What happened to Alan Scott's eyes (including "the one that isn't his," which as I mentioned when I did this back in week 20 may have been answered here)?
22. What happened to the Red Tornado? How did he end up with one voicebox in Mal Duncan's chest and another one attached to his body in Australia?
23. What's the story with Steel's hand, since he doesn't appear to actually have lost his original left hand to the General?
24. What was the giant "reality-warping wave"?
24. How did Adam, Buddy and Kory end up wherever they were in space?
25. How did Devilance get the word that Lady Styx had put out a contract on them, locate them on Adon, and then get all the way (back!) there in time to start hunting them?
26. What exactly was the "Freedom of Power Treaty" supposed to do?
27. What smashed Rip Hunter's time sphere? (yes, I am going to address each of the Rip's-HQ danglers that are still dangling individually)
28. Why does Rip's HQ have pictures of Rosa Parks, dinosaurs, the Boston Tea Party, etc.?
29. What's the significance of the time all the clocks are set to?
30. What's up with the magnet dangling from a tripod?
31. "World War III - Why? How?" And why is China missing?
32. What's the significance of the picture of the "Snakes on a Plane"/caduceus dagger that turns up again at the beginning of Week 30?
33. What's with the not-quite-52 numbers scattered on the floor?
34. Why all the little circled 52s?
35. "Dead by lead?"
36. "Further time is different"
37. "He won't smell it."
38. "Sonic disruptors-->Time Masters-->Time Servants"
39. "'I'm not kryptonite'"
40. "It hurts to breathe."
41. "2000 years from now" (i.e. 4006, from the cover of Week 19)
42. "Earth"
43. "The Scarab is Eternal?" (The Blue Beetle scarab, or the Black Adam one?)
44. "Where is the Curry Heir?"
45. "The Tornado is in pieces."
46. "Find the last 'El'"
47. "What happened to the son of Superman?"
48. "Don't ask the Question. It lies."
49. "Mortal Savage" (this may be a reference to JSA Classified, but why would that be on the chalkboard?)
50. "The old Gods are DEAD, the new Gods want what's left."
51. "Te versus (Au+Pb)" (element 52, Gold, Lead)
52. "Secret FIVE!"
53. "Someone is monitoring. They see us. They see me." (obv. this has to do with the Monitors, but what's its significance in the story?)
54. "Khimaera Lives Again" (Hawkgirl, yes, but why?)
55. "I'm supposed to be DEAD?"
56. "The Lazarus Pit Rises"
57. "When Am I?"
58. "OTHERS?"
59. "Casey the Cop"
60. "Silverblade"
61. "Find the Sun Devils"
62. "What is spanner's galaxy?"
63. Why did Rip Hunter scrawl "it's all his fault" all over a corner of his HQ?
64. Why did John Henry's blood samples explode?
65. What's "beyond the veil, beyond the two score and twelve walls of heaven"?
66. What's up with the Sivanium robot?
67. How did Kate get to be Batwoman?
68. What was up with the restored face of the damaged Deadly Sin?
69. Why did Doc Magnus's responsometer tech stop working?
70. Why were Intergang or Ridge-Ferrick or whoever planning the bombing at the wedding (cf. the rat poison) before Black Adam had proposed to Isis?
71. Where did Booster's future corpse come from?
72. The suicide bomber at the wedding: what were her (personal or political) ends? (Not just her evident affiliation with the crime cult, but what the point of blowing herself up was.)
73. The "gigantic hands at the center of the universe": what were they?
74. Does Cain of the House of Mystery have a connection to the cult of crime?
75. Who was it who gave Ralph "some help pulling [himself] together"?
76. What are the "new laws, new axioms" of the tenth age of magic?
77. What's the significance of the year 5252?
78. How did Lobo get religion?
79. Why did Wonder Girl think Supernova was Kon-El?
80. What exactly happened to Daniel Carter?
81. What did Ralph find beyond the Mictlan Gate?
82. Super-Chief: WTF?
83. What's the story behind the Crime Bible and attendant cult?
84. Waverider appearing in Sivana's lab and saying "I know why": 'splain please?
85. How did Yurrd/Sobek end up in the Sivana lab three months before being released from the Oolong Island "Project X" lab?
86. The whole scene "between seconds" in Week 27 with the Time Stealers, Waverider, "hypertime," "this year. Like wonderful wet cement," Clock Queen, the question of who Rip Hunter is, "the golden metal that makes [Skeets'] body impervious to the ravages of time portals," etc. needs so much unpacking I can't even tease it out into individual questions.
87. Who's "the twice-named daughter of Cain," if not Batwoman?
88. "The questions have not yet been answered"/the failure of the prophecy?
89. The "Stygian passover" implies that somebody gets spared. Who?
90. Why is Marseille(s) so dad-blamed significant?
91. How did Ralph manage to contact Supernova?
92. Who turned the guy with the amulet into a yeti, and why?
93. What exactly did Ralph learn from Rama Kushna?
94. The various Nightwings we've been seeing in 52: Dick or Jason?
95. How did Skeets eat the Phantom Zone, and why is almost everyone visible inside his visor wearing Mr. Mind glasses?
96. Where or when did Booster and Rip escape to?
97. What did the yellow aliens mean by "and so it begins"?
98. What's up with Captain Marvel's insanity or non-insanity inside the Rock of Eternity?
99. What did the Green Lanterns want with Adam and Kory, and what have they been up to on Mogo for the last few weeks?
100. How did Ralph's ring end up on Sue's gravestone?

Assuming that issue #50 is going to have another 22-page story, and that issue #52 (as rumored) has a 52-page story, that still means there are only 194 pages left to wrap up this series... which means that there's going to have to be more than one revelation every two pages.

Just a few more notes this week:

Pg. 1: Four horsemen, ending her rain. As others have noted, the timeline is wonky here: Osiris died on day 5 of the previous week, but Adam only gets the krakkoooom to let him know it now?

Pg. 5: Note Sivana, or a statue of him, giving the thumbs-up in the first panel. But how did Sobek/Yurrd get sent back in time? Also, Sobek tells Adam that his enemy is Intergang, specifically; that's a pretty narrow target to evolve into World War III, but I guess that's what the next six weeks are for.

Pg. 12: The statues, I think, are of Teth-Adam's first wife Shiruta and his children Gon and Hurut.

Pg. 21: I'm glad to see this scene underscore the idea that Renee's not going to be Vic II; what I'm curious about is how that difference is going to manifest itself. Is selflessness really something that's new to her, or a potential goal for her to achieve, as opposed to something that's already deeply rooted in her character?


At 6:54 PM, Blogger Erik said...

Also, remember that World War III is solicited to answer most of the OYL dangling questions:

At 7:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"He won't smell it" = Ralph won't be able to "smell" the mystery of FaustFate playing him?

At 8:27 PM, Blogger Squashua said...

For those of you who missed it earlier, I'm sticking with my guns.

This whole "Introduce Adrianna to Adam, get him to fall in love, and kill her to make a point." thing by Intergang was one big old planned-out scheme from the get-go that could have gone any number of ways, with the ultimate goal to make Adam go bat$#!+ bugnuts loco.

Like, even worse than before, so much so that he loses all support from anyone else and his country falls into ruin.

Osiris may have been a bystander, or portrayed as such, but Adrianna was a willing participant and she knew her sacrifice was coming.

I still suspect she's an Apokaliptian New God and will rise from the grave, not unlike Knockout did over in The Secret Six.

Plus, 52 fans should read this week's Manhunter.

At 8:27 PM, Blogger raphaeladidas said...

Probably/maybe addressed by the end of 52:

Probably addressed by WWIII tie-ins:

Probably will never be addressed:

The many things scrawled on the chalkboards either refer to events in other titles (43,44,47,49,50,52,53,54) or are things that will become clear when the story is over.

24 - The one that created New Earth?
28 - Just to emphasize that Rip travels through/monitors other times.
73 - Alex Luthor's hands a la Infinite Crisis
79 - Wishful thinking
85 - "Time is broken"
96 - I don't know exactly where I got this idea but didn't Rip steal the 52 seconds as a hiding place?

At 2:26 AM, Blogger Scott said...

The flag of Kahndaq is shown on page 2, over Osiris (I wasn't sure it was him. I wouldn't have expected so much of his body to be left.) I like that the flag borrows elements from other Arab/Middle East flags but uses Black Adam's colors. Is the flag a new design for this page, or has it been used somewhere else before? Do the three triangles mean anything? I'm not suggesting that it has any real significance as a clue; I just like flags. I'm a little surprised that it isn't just a black field with a gold lighting bolt.

I'll also reiterate what squashua said. 52 fans should really get their hands on this week's Manhunter, #29.

At 4:26 AM, Blogger Jeffrey Hardy Quah said...

I rather enjoyed this issue, certainly more than the previous one. You're right, we knew too little about Isis to truly feel her death (though I've always liked her). But while I didn't really feel for her, I certainly felt for Black Adam. The guy tries so hard...

At 4:34 AM, Blogger Lux_Luther said...

44. "Where is the Curry Heir?"

This has, in effect, been covered in Aquaman where "The Watcher In The Water" - probably Arthur Curry - is training the new Aquaman.

49. "Mortal Savage" (this may be a reference to JSA Classified, but why would that be on the chalkboard?)

I assumed this was a JSA classified reference - but didn't he become mortal related to the events of the final Wally West plot? (See final point for a bit more on this)

50. "The old Gods are DEAD, the new Gods want what's left."

If we agree the Four Horsemen are Apokolyptian, I think these are the 'new' New Gods in question.

51. "Te versus (Au+Pb)" (element 52, Gold, Lead)

Tellurium has atomic number 52. A thread Doc Magnus will have to counter? The main element in the Sivanium Man?

52. "Secret FIVE!"

A reference to the Mad Hatter's apparent death?

56. "The Lazarus Pit Rises"

I think this a Jason Todd/Red Hood reference.

65. What's "beyond the veil, beyond the two score and twelve walls of heaven"?

I'd guess this is another Alexander Luthor giant hands reference, given the nod to 52 planets (or "walls of heaven").

74. Does Cain of the House of Mystery have a connection to the cult of crime?

Mad Hatter is bugging the House Of Secrets to keep an eye on the rest of the Secret Six. The Cult Of Crime could be using the House Of Mystery in the same way?

97. What did the yellow aliens mean by "and so it begins"?

Are they referring to the events of Animal Man 24, the last time they saw the multiverse flood in to the 'current' universe and they had to intervene?

My take on the whole thing is that at the end I think the final pre-OYL issues will actually lead directly into the OYL issues, and the 52 weeks in the interim will be have been removed from DCU time continuity. Possibly this turns out to be the only way to stop the Four Horsemen from destroying everything, to take them out of the timestream altogether.

At 5:30 AM, Blogger raphaeladidas said...

To you Manhunter 29 readers: How do you think you-know-who was able to partake of the other you-know-who to pull off that stunt?

At 5:34 AM, Blogger Squashua said...

There was you-know-who DNA on the goggles if they were somehow acquired or borrowed from Batman; otherwise a hairbrush will do, or maybe someone has the bullet-in-the-head body. He only need a nailclipping.

At 7:11 AM, Blogger Will Staples said...

Could y'all just post the relevant info from Manhunter with a spoiler warning for those who don't want to read it? I'm not following the series, so I don't mind being spoiled.

At 7:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't help but think, what with the lack of remaining issues, that a lot of the Rip Hunter chalkboard scrawlings were plugs for One Year Later stuff like the "Secret Six" and "Hawkgirl", with no real connection to 52 itself. Even the "Superman's son" reads less like a Kingdom/Hypertime reference and more like "Johns and Donner's Action Comics - coming soon(ish) from DC!"

Also following hot on my Steel will die in #52 and Skeets is 4th horseman predictions, here comes another:

71. Where did Booster's future corpse come from?

Answer: Issue 52.

At 7:31 AM, Blogger Squashua said...

Probably from issue #52


Oh, oh, here she comes.
Watch out boy, she'll f--- you up.
Whoa, oh, here she comes.
She's Manhunter!

Blue Beetle in Manhunter is... a cannibal.

At 7:51 AM, Blogger Mark Fossen said...

My take on the whole thing is that at the end I think the final pre-OYL issues will actually lead directly into the OYL issues, and the 52 weeks in the interim will be have been removed from DCU time continuity.
No ... I mean ..... no.

Wow - I don't get pissed about comics, but if they pull a Bobby Ewing In The Shower with 52, that would probably set me off.

I think there's too much planted here that the "mainstream" DCu needs for them to blink it out like that.


On another note, I picture the 52 crew madly scrambling, as they try to check off items on Doug's list.

At 9:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems to me that a number of those have been answered in some way (the tornado in pieces was the focus of a whole issue. in which nothing exciting happened, but hey- pieces). Obviously, some few of them are just pointing to other things that were (are) upcoming in the DCU. Some (like the fragments in issue 1) are brought in from previous stories.

some things, i just dont think matter. they were just there- story elements. such as why Q started his investigation (he is a detective, picked up on something funny going on. no conspiracy there.) or the flight Booster tried to save. they were things that happened, but werent utterly controlled. we cant let comic paranoia set in and start seeing invisible connections behind every word and movement that occurs.

the rest of this list is composed of things that fall into one of two categories for me, though:

1. genuine plots left to be finished

2. things the space filler months could have been shorted to fill out on their own. batwomans backstory, for example. or just spending some more time on plots seemingly too complex to finish in a hurry.

the clocks stopping, however. my mind lost all that in the shuffle. at first i was just like, "eh, more 52 numberplay cuteness like we have seen over and over".

BUT the waverider bit, the clocks stopped there too. and i didnt really think to connect hunters lab as a crime scene to waveriders. but now that you point it out, it looks fishy.

and while im on skeets, i think the WHEN is obvious. he starts glitching out and goes offline. and i remember an 52 interview saying something about him going bad "after magnus toyed with him". i cant believe magnus did that himself, but who knows. but i would say thats where his personality flipped.

i also wanted to say that at first i thought, maybe skeets is being controlled, or isnt skeets. but he keeps referring to Booster in an overly familiar way. it doesnt seem he would do that if he was anything other than genuinely skeets, regardless of his current moral leanings.

At 9:52 AM, Blogger Jeff R. said...

I'd like to specifically add 2a: Where's the Joker? I think that just about every image from that swirl has shown up in the series so far except for the Joker Card, which showed up multiple times...

At 9:54 AM, Blogger JOHNNY ZITO said...

I kind of agree with andyg.

Thanks for the list!

At 10:28 AM, Blogger Paul I said...

Wouldn't it be great if Vic turned up as a ghost, and he and Montoya solved crimes together? There's your Thin Man comic right there.

At 12:09 PM, Blogger Emmet Matheson said...

Isn't that Topper?

At 5:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"9. Why did Charlie pick Montoya for... whatever it is he picked her for? ("That's the question, isn't it?" is not an answer.)"

They have the same hat size.

At 5:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"87. Who's "the twice-named daughter of Cain," if not Batwoman?"

Casandra Cain - Batgirl ?

At 6:30 PM, Blogger zc said...

Yes... I'm actually about to do this.

keep in mind that while I've read ahead of everyone here, I don't know everything, and in fact there's a lot I don't know (like what happens in #52).

1. I have a feeling it has something to do with all the Guardians talking about "The 52." Though I still don't know why the Dominators are saying it (really, I don't). (This has an answer, but I dunno if or when it's revealed--probably 52 #52)
2. ...That's the forming of "New Earth." It's a repeat of the scene from Infinite Crisis.
3. I have a feeling that, when they wrote that line, it was "insert villain here." You have to keep in mind that the story of 52 changed significantly from when issue #1 was written over a year and a half ago and when this issue was written a few months ago.
4. You mean the one who came BACK in Infinite Crisis (and supposedly left after Identity Crisis)? I imagine they're the same, unless you're talking about something else, or I have the timing of this screwed up. But I'm pretty sure Booster came BACK in IC.
5. The timeline Booster remembers was likely the pre-Infinite Crisis/Post-CoIE Earth, while THIS timeline is "New Earth" aka Post-Infinite Earth.
6a. This is revealed in issue 51.
6b. I have no idea.
7. I don't think this is important, nor was there an answer created. But if there IS an answer, my bet would be the Oolong Island/Egg Fu crew.
8. I have no idea.
9. Because he did? I dunno. I haven't seen an answer for this.
10. "Artificial Souls?" Uhhhhh--the difference between normal robots and fully sentient ones like Red Tornado/Metal men?
11. I REMEMBER this being answered somewhere recently, but since I can't distinctly remember where, I won't give it away, in case it hasn't actually been revealed. I'm trying really hard to give small clues but not spoil.
12. Gaff, probably.
13. They made it? Another thing that probably has no answer.
14. Devem? I dunno.
15. I dunno, but this is probably revealed later in the series.
16. Good question, but (again) this is probably something with no answer.
17a/b. Because the book of crime told them to? o.o
17c. Well, considering how often the Book of Crime talks about Apokolips...
17d. Didn't they try and set up a trade route through it but Black Adam told them to piss off?
18a. Alexander Luthor's meddling in Infinite Crisis, probably.
18b. Superhero science!/Probably answered in one of the WWIII minis.
19a. See 18a.
19b. See 18b.
20. See 18a/21.
21. Well, as you said, it may be answered there...
22a. See 18a.
22b. Uhhhhhh Evil Superhero Science!/18a?
23. I have no clue.
24. See 18a.
24. They were in space in Infinite Crisis/18a.
25. Probably has no answer.
26. I wish I knew.
27. Skeets?
28. Probably just random images from different times chosen to be placed on those screens.
29. I dunno. What time are they set to?
30. Huh?
31a. Well, we already know WWIII is "Black Adam v. The World", and with THIS issue we can postulate that he's a bit miffed from Osiris and Isis getting killed, right?
32b. Huh? I dunno.
32. Got me.
33. ...?
34. Clearly "52" is an important number. See 1.
35. Mon-El.
36. Dunno.
37. rmitchum is probably right about this. Again, story changed from then to now, as the Chalkboard was early on.
38. Random old comic reference?
39. Action comics reference probably.
40. I dunno.
41. Mark Waid could probably tell you.
42. Has many superhumans? lol
43. There's a Black Adam scarab?
44. Reference to the new Arthur Curry in Aquaman.
45. Well, he IS. You know, part of him in that one dude, part of him in Australia...
46. Mon-El? Kara is in Legion-time?
47. Oblique Action Comics reference?
48. I have no idea.
49. JSA Classified reference.

I'm gonna stop here and point out that most of the previous references probably ARE to OYL things. Just because they're on Rip's board doesn't mean they aren't meta-references. Always keep in mind outside-comic logic.

50. Pretty self explanitory, I think.
51. I dunno.
52. Reference to the current Secret Six, who always seem to be losing their sixth member.
53. I don't think the Monitors even APPEAR in 52, though they're very important in Countdown. So, red herring?
54. I dunno.
55. I dunno.
56. All I know is that this BETTER, BETTER be hinting that Ra's Al Ghul is coming back. Aside from that, I dunno.
57. "Rip Hunter is lost in time" was my original theory, but that's not the case, so I dunno.
58. No clue, but I think this DOES have an answer. I just don't know what it is.
59. Red herring?
60. Red herring?
61. No clue.
62. Red herring?

I dunno about any of the past four.

63. Skeets? I dunno.
64. Huh?
65. Who said this? Devilance? Maybe New Genesis? I dunno.
66. Huh?
67. Probably gonna be explained in a Batwoman mini after 52.
68. Didn't Captain Marvel put him back or something?
69. I dunno, but considering we've seen Mercury, it seems to be fixed, doesn't it?
70. Huh?
71. ...The future?
72. Plot device I imagine.
73. ...Alex Luthor's hands. In Infinite Crisis.
74. Doubtful. He's probably seen as a "Sandman character" now, so I doubt they'll touch him. Didio is really adamant about not letting Vertigo characters into the DCU. Dream only even showed up in JSA because he had a direct connection, and EVEN THEN it was a silent cameo.
75. I dunno.
76. Probably has no answer.
77. It has the number 52 in it?
78. Probably gonna be answered in a 52 spin off, or not at all.
79. She's very hopeful/it was a popular theory among the fandom.
80. Who knows? If this is answered at ALL (and isn't a hanging plot thread that is never answered until Crisis Finitum in 2016) it comes back in #52.
81. Probably nothing that will be important in 52, if it's mentioned ever again period.
82. "Grant Morrison has a lot of ideas" is my answer for this one. That or "Mark Waid is silly."
83. No idea. Darkseid is my theory.
84. I dunno. Waverider is a Time Master, so he probably knows the future...? But then Skeets eats him. I dunno.
85. Plot hole, though I dunno what you're talking about, honestly.
86. Yeah no kidding.
87. As Siglain has said, they read the prophecy wrong.
88. I forget when the Prophecy thing is revealed. It's before WWIII, obviously.
89. I dunno what you're talking about?
90. Same here.
91. Probably has no answer.
92. Probably has no answer.
93. No clue.
94. Didn't Siglain eventually say it was Dick? Which makes no sense, by the way, but that's just my opinion.
95a. I've honestly come to believe the wording "ate the phantom zone" was a red herring. Honestly I dunno WHAT the deal with that was.
96. Dammit, I dunno if I can answer this.
97. Random meaningful exposition? Animal Man is reborn? I dunno.
98. Editorial inconsistency, most likely.
99a. Didn't Kory/Adam somehow get ahold of help via the Lanterns? Adam said "we were promised Green Lanterns."
99b. This will probably be ignored as a result of the problem with focusing on one story in a week-by-week real-time comic (which is probably why DC seems to be subverting that strict format in Countdown).
100. I have a theory on this (I don't REALLY know), but I can't say what it is, as it's a spoiler for other things.

Pg. 1: Again, inconsistencies/weaknesses of the week-by-week structure.

Pg. 5: I think that's actually Sivana transporting/dropping off Sobek at the place. Though I still dunno what you're talking about witht his time-travel thing.

At 6:42 PM, Blogger zc said...


Regarding questions #11 & 96. The answer I was going to give is provided by someone else early on in the comments. Apparently I wasn't entirely crazy when I thought that had been revealed somewhere.

Also, there is one comment here that's premoniscient, but about the wrong character, though whether it's about 52 or afterwards, I don't know. This is also loosely connected to one of my answers on my huge list.

Also keep in mind that for a lot of my answers I put in my own theories. Only a small portion of them have definate answers that I know, and many of them, as my list indicates, probably don't HAVE an answer.

At 7:02 PM, Blogger raphaeladidas said...

It never occurred to me that the inconsistencies Booster experienced with history were the result of his referencing pre-Infinite Crisis history, but it makes perfect sense.

85. Douglas, I think you forgot that when the other three horsemen emerged it was mentioned that Yurrd had emerged earlier (#38).

11 & 96. Guess I was correct about the 52 seconds. It's implied in issue #37 but I swear it was stated explicitly somewhere

At 7:43 PM, Blogger zc said...

"...but I swear it was stated explicitly somewhere"

I know! I just can't recall where.

EDIT: AHA! It was stated in the most recent issue of Wizard, with Superman standing over a dead Jimmy Olsen on the cover. They have a brief thing about 52 in it, and in refering to Rip Hunter, they state that he took the 52 seconds.

At 9:02 PM, Blogger acespot said...

What is/Who are "(The) 52"?
I just figured it out...

The Earth of the mainstream DC reality, and, by extension, all those living on it, is/are "The 52". Take this quote from Father Time in this week's Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters:
"...I know who and what created you, Gonzo. Mathmagicians of the Anti-Life Equation...Chaos Architects, or should I call them Shadow Demons? You're a probe, dispatched to gather data and assess the threat level. Fifty-Two frightens them, doesn't it? Their backs are against the wall...and you're here to tenderize the world before--"
Following this, Father Time is revealed to have been a chronal agent.

What do you people think about this theory?

At 8:07 AM, Blogger Will Staples said...

3. There have been Monster Societies before, and it's possible that they joined up with the Secret Society. Or it's just an editorial error. Note that given Sivana's history with Mister Mind, he probably gave the Horsemen their Monster Society moniker.

12. Probably a time glitch caused by the Crisis.

14. In the issue where he talks to Cassie and Booster, Ralph notes that Devem was just a con-man.

26. To stop American super-heroes from intruding into other countries.

38. I'm thinking that Sonic Disruptors, which was canceled halfway through, ties into the whole time distortion thing. Or something. As for Time Masters, that's Rip Hunter, and he was recruiting other time-travellers (Time Commando, Waverider), so there's your Time Servants.

85. He was probably just created earlier than the others and sent to Casa Sivana to coincide with Adam's visit.

92. IIRC, he was a scientist experimenting on himself.

93. He learned that his story was predetermined from Week 1.

98. He was having trouble adjusting to being the new Wizard, but got over it.

By the way, am I making connections where there are none, or what?

At 10:23 AM, Blogger Battlestar Luna said...

"Some 52 information from One Year Later. Re: army of the Anti-Monitor"

At 10:47 AM, Blogger acespot said...

UH, battlestar luna, I just said that. Thanks for taking credit for my theories.

At 12:53 PM, Blogger Emmet Matheson said...

Welcome to the internets, Ace!

At 12:56 PM, Blogger Pete-Zar said...

This blog has made 52 for me. Thanks to Doug and everyone I have been reading these past months.

18. If the heroes that went missing in space after IC were caught in a zeta beam/boom tube collision that would explain why Hawkgirl got big. As Hawkgirl was enlarged in the accident it could also mean that the beam was created to travel FROM Earth.

If the tube was being used to transport someone to Devilance's trap planet this might also answer 24. In Blue Beetle #10 a Mother Box transports Blue Beetle & a girl to the same spot from which our Kory, Buddy and Adam escaped. Here they discover a scrap of Buddy's costume, maybe a statue of Starfire and a coupla New Gods.

17 & 92. Is Intergang getting their beastmen tech from the same place as the Great Ten? Could it all be illegal alien genegrafts? This would has been a nice source for Luthor's everyman project too (but that story's over isn't it?). Maybe this will be tackled in Countdown, the Darkseid ad mentions the Great Disaster which was populated by... beastmen!

At 3:17 PM, Blogger Battlestar Luna said...

acespot - there are 30 comments on this post and I didn't read them all before posting. Second, I'm not taking credit, I was pointing to a community post talking about it.

At 3:40 PM, Blogger Keith said...

37. I took "he won't smell it" as Faust not smelling the gingold flask.

At 2:03 PM, Blogger Audie said...

Dumb question, maybe you've answered it in a much earlier post, but sometime back DiDio or someone at DC said something to the effect, "I can't believe no one's noticed the colors of the DC Bullets". Has anyone noticed a pattern?

At 9:19 PM, Blogger acespot said...

battlestar, no problem...i kinda figured you hadn't read them all...but that's why it's important to always do so.
Sorry to have seemed more irked than I actually was.

At 2:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe 52 is a living meme of some kind, flipping around through the time-stream pulling strings.
That would explain the random occurences.

In fact, 52, in my opinion, is in actuality an insanely badass threat waiting to show itself--a new villian, an old one (or more than one old ones)--one that will play an integral part in the "third Crisis" Didio's talked about.
That would be why Red Tornado kept screaming it--out of trauma from managing to see it--and why Time is Broken, since Skeets can't be doing all this himself.

At 2:38 PM, Blogger Rob S. said...

In fact, 52, in my opinion, is in actuality an insanely badass threat waiting to show itself--a new villian, an old one (or more than one old ones)--one that will play an integral part in the "third Crisis" Didio's talked about.

Mace, you just popped my head open. 52 -- especially the symmetrical way it's presented in the logo -- could be read as a highly stylized omega. Not entirely sure what that could mean, but didn't Darkseid use the omega as a symbol during the Rock of Ages storyline in JLA? And Morrison has experimented with logo symmetry before, with his New X-Men logo being a visual palindrome, readable rightside-up and upside-down.


At 2:39 PM, Blogger Rob S. said...

(Apologies if the above is old news, by the way.)

At 11:54 AM, Blogger Scott said...

30 -Magnet and tripod -- just a visual tip of the hat to the Atom's Time Pool adventures, I'm thinking.

At 5:09 PM, Blogger raphaeladidas said...

Must-read 52 interview with Rucka.

At 6:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not posted before ever, but I wondered if Isis' last words to Adam, may just be a result of the pestillence ravaging her mind as well as her body?


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