Doomsday Clock #8 Annotated, Part 2: Watchmen Callbacks & Timeframe Questions

Text Pages

Clark Kent applies for a job, from Action Comics #1

Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster created the Daily Star, the newspaper which originally employed Clark Kent and Lois Lane, for June 1938's Action Comics issue #1. When the Golden Age Superman stories were ported over to Earth-Two in the Silver Age, Clark and Lois' employer remained the Star, with Clark eventually becoming editor-in-chief.

The Metropolis Times first appeared in March 1958's Superboy issue #53. It was also referenced in 1978's Superman movie as a competitor of the Daily Planet. Indeed, with the movie Metropolis standing in for New York City, the Planet was probably considered a competitor of the New York Times.

We think this is the first appearance of Metropolis Today, but we note that the logo borrows from the logo for the 1988 World Of Metropolis miniseries.

This edition of the Daily Planet sports the motto "The Voice Of Metropolis." Usually the Planet's motto is "A Great Metropolitan Newspaper," which of course was drawn from the "Adventures of Superman" opening narration.

Julius Schwartz, Gardner Fox and Gil Kane created Ray Palmer, a/k/a the second Atom, for October 1961's Showcase issue #34. The World's Smallest Super-Hero can shrink to subatomic size, ride air currents and electromagnetic waves, and retain his full 180 pounds of weight at six inches of height. Ray was named after Raymond A. Palmer, who edited Amazing Stories magazine from 1938 through 1949.

And Finally -- What's Up With The Timeframe?

One Year Later house ad
DC's "One Year Later" house ad

Many superhero-comic Big Events take place at the same time as the ongoing series which they promise to change forever. However, Doomsday Clock is supposed to happen in the not-too-distant future of the DC Universe. Presumably this allows for the ongoing series to reflect developments like Batman's new costume. Regardless, it has been tricky to pin down Doomsday Clock's timeframe, ironically because its internal dates have been rather inconsistent.

All of those dates so far have come from the text pages in issues #2, 5, 6 and 8. In issue #2, the Internet articles Ozymandias reads come from December 7 and 20, 2017, around the time the issue was published in the real world. Issue #6 pins Typhoon's death similarly to the issue's real-world publication date, July 25, 2018. However, issue #5's magazine has a cover date of May 30, 2019, reflecting the one-year-ahead setting; and this issue's newspapers establish that the Moscow tragedy occurred/will occur on June 4, 2019.

Issue #7 ended with Doctor Manhattan on Mars (possibly Watchmen's Mars), musing about fighting Superman one month in the future. In light of this issue's big blue explosion, we're thinking that the confrontation takes place while Supes is still in Moscow, frustrated and angry. That, in turn, would mean a one-month time jump between issues #7 and #8, with future issues filling in what happened to the other major players during that time.

Additionally, assuming that Doomsday Clock holds to its bimonthly release schedule, issue #11 would come out on Wednesday, June 5, 2019. We would therefore expect issue #11 to feature the big Superman/Doctor Manhattan throwdown, with issues #9 and #10 devoted to Ozymandias, Mime & Marionette, Saturn Girl, Johnny Thunder, et al. We're eager to find out in two months!

What did you spot in Doomsday Clock issue #8? Let us know in the comments!

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