The Dark Nights: Metal was a summer crossover event that was released in 2017 by DC comics. The story was a continuation of the DC Rebirth saga and tells the tale of a mysterious dimension and the deep, dark secret connected to it that Batman is hiding from the Justice League.
The series opened the gates to DC's Dark Multiverse. Terrifying, bizarre, and boundary-pushing, the series was released to great critical acclaim from fans and critics. Here are 10 facts you need to know about the Dark Multiverse.
10 Who Is The Big Bad Of The Dark Multiverse?
Meet Barbatos: One of the oldest beings in creation and was tasked with destroying unstable worlds. Why? So the World Forger, another cosmic deity, could use the ensuing energy to make new worlds. However, soon the desire to destroy worlds grew more powerful than making new ones.
Ultimately, Barbatos killed the Forger and began plotting a way to spread his influence beyond his own world into every corner of the multiverse, to bring about an end to all of creation.
9 The Marvel Connection
DC is releasing a whole host of stories from the Dark Multiverse. At first glance, this might seem like a reinvention of DC's Elseworlds storylines. In reality, the Dark Multiverse stories will be closer in spirit to Marvel's What If?... line of comics.
Elseworlds put familiar DC characters in dramatically different situations. Like a Superman who was raised by Darkseid, or a Batman who lived in late eighteenth-century Britain. However, the Dark Multiverse stories will go in a different direction. They will explore stories that are identical to the main cannon, except that the featured heroes will fail to make the right choice, and take the darker path. Like a Bruce Wayne who has no qualms with killing his enemies, or a Superman who forgets his humanity and tries to rule the world as a god.
8 What's With The Minus Sign?
The Dark multiverse was created at the same time as the Multiverse. But it feeds off of the dark energy generated by the sentience of the Multiverse. As a result, the Dark Multiverse is a much more violent and chaotic version of Earth-Prime, and all the other Earths we have seen in DC comics.
To separate the Dark multiverse from the Multiverse, the Earths from the Darkverse are given a minus sign before their designated number. This helps differentiate the dark universe from their regular counterparts and also signifies their darker, more evil nature. Because subtlety has never been comics' strong suit.
7 Is There Someone Above Barbatos?
Perpetua is basically Barbatos's mom. She was part of a group known as the Super Celestials, cosmic beings that created the Multiverse itself. Perpetua is also responsible for the creation of the Over-Monitor, Anti-Monitor, and the World Forger.
That said, Perpetua is far from a motherly character. She is the most feared out of all the celestials and was imprisoned beyond the source wall. She wields the seven hidden forces of the Universe and was plotting to create the multiverse as a massive, self-sustaining weapon before being stopped by the other celestials and imprisoned.
6 How Long Has Barbatos Been A Threat?
Barbatos's plans began to take shape when he witnessed Batman die, go back to the past, and then make the jump back to the present timeline. This set in motion a long series of events with Batman at the center of a plot created by Barbatos to bring about a collision between the Multiverse and the Darkverse.
So yeah, it was basically Batman whose consciousness allowed Barbatos an entryway into our world and the resulting chaos that shook the universe to its very foundations. As the Joker would say, 'Whoopsie!'
5 So Barbatos & Batman Must Be Pretty Tight
Very tight indeed, much to Batman's horror. If all that Barbatos has revealed is true, he has been single-handedly responsible for everything that has led Bruce Wayne up to the point where he felt compelled to put on the mantle of The Batman.
The connection between the two stretches back across generations since Barbatos first encountered Bruce when he was stuck in the past. Since then, Barbatos has been using his influence on Bruce's entire bloodline to bring him to the point where Batman could be used as a vessel for his arrival.
4 Why Couldn't Barbatos Use The Darkverse Batman?
He did use the Darkverse Batman. All seven of them. That's right, there are seven Batmen in the Darkverse whom Barbatos corrupted and turned into his foot soldiers. These Batmen are the ones who enter the prime Multiverse to wreak havoc on the Justice League.
Each of the corrupted Batmen acquired immense power and used it destroy the league in their own dimension before setting their sights on ours. The fact that they had the brains of Batman and the powers of the entire league made them basically unstoppable.
3 Oh Wow, An Army Of Evil Batman? So Who's The Worst Of Them?
That's tough to say... actually, no it isn't. The Bat Who Laughs is definitely the most terrifying Batman among the lot. A twisted melding between his universe's Bruce Wayne and the Joker after Batman accidentally inhales his poisonous gas, The Bat Who Laughs is gleefully, irredeemably, unapologetically evil.
He is also the leader of the dark Batmen and the one who wields the most power among them. Basically, he is every bit the evil monster that the real Batman is afraid of turning into.
2 How Can The League Defeat Villains From The Darkverse?
Since the evil Dark Knights were quickly reaching Superman levels of being ridiculously overpowered, they needed a similarly ridiculous weakness, like Kryptonite. In the story, this weakness is a substance known as the Nth metal.
It is the same metal whose variations can be found in Hawkman's weapon, Wonder Woman's bracelets, New God tech, and a host of other places. This metal has so far proven to be the most effective weapon while dealing with interlopers from the Dark Multiverse.
1 How Many Characters Do We Get To See In The Dark Multiverse?
All of them. The original Dark Knights: Metal had a storyline whose goal seemed to be to bring back characters that have been missing from the comics for a long time. This series saw the return of Hawkman and Hawkgirl, Plastic Man, Mister Terrific, The Outsiders, The Immortal Men, The Joker, Red Tornado, Dream of the Endless, Oblivion, Detective Chimp, Black Adam, Starro the Conqueror, and the very concept of Hypertime itself.
The other stories from the Dark Multiverse have seen even more characters from DC come to light with much darker origins. It remains to be seen how many more twisted retellings of heroes we will get to see as the Darkverse is explored more closely. For starters, the upcoming Darkverse retelling of the Death of Superman will reveal a world where Lois Lane, consumed by grief over Superman's death at the hands of Doomsday, inherits his powers and goes on a rampage destroying everyone she blames for his death.