The 52 Steps: Week Nine

"Because you're like me. You're curious." - The Question

Week Nine

Previously in 52...

Ralph went looking for a resurrection, Natasha Irons decided that she needed powers, and Steel started living up to his namesake.

The Key Players

Steel, The Question, Renee Montoya.

Guest Appearances

Starfire, Adam Strange and Animal Man, Lex Luthor, Natasha Irons, Devilance.


As Week Nine gets rolling, we've got quite a mess on our hands, as the fully transformed Steel crashes a Lexcorp party with his new powers, only to get rumbled by Luthors new meta humans, including his niece, Natasha, a fully-powered beast of a teenage girl that can now fly and hit pretty darn hard, as well as being near invulnerable. With the full array of her powers at hand, Natasha takes Steel to school, beating him bloody (no mean feat since he's now made of stainless steel) and chucks him into Metropolis Harbor.

Our trapped friends in space have a lengthy discussion with Devilance, God of the Hunt, and he informs the group that they've seen something mortals were not meant to see when they fought the battle at the end of space and time. While Adam Strange thinks on this, Starfire and Animal Man make good their escape, trouncing Devilance and making off with his power staff to fuel their flight home. But is he really down and out?

Finally, as the week winds down, Renee Montoya is visited by The Question at her local bar. Good old Vic reveals his identity and the secret behind his mask to her to show her his faith in her before confiding in her the true purpose of their mission: Intergang has targeted Gotham. And all the while, the mysterious Batwoman lurks on the rooftop above.

The "History of the DCU" backup feature summarizes the now-classic "Identity Crisis" storyline for those three of you that haven't read it yet.

Justin's Thoughts and Concerns

I'd be remiss without crediting loyal reader Brian Eaton for this tidbit, so take a look at the costumes that Natasha and her new crew are wearing, as well as the costumes those folks on the cover of Lex's superpowers brochure (see last week) are wearing. Not only are they wearing Lex's ever-stylish purple and green ensembles, but, as Brian noted, these are also the standard colors of madness in comic books. With Natasha's little rampage this issue, that seems to hold true.

Also noteworthy is that this is the first actual appearance of Batwoman, not the ever-vaunted issue #11 that so many retailers have put on order. True fans, get your butts to the shops and get the real first appearance, not the actual first story she's involved in. Go! Go now!

Anyone care to take a crack at all the people who are going to be hunting Adam and Animal Man and Starfire? Bounty Hunters, New Gods, Darkseid? Chances are they won't be getting home anytime soon.


I predict Batwoman is Kate Kane! Duh! No, seriously. First a little self-pat on the back, since I did call the Intergang connection and Steel's new liquid metal form. Not that they were all that hard, but I was proud of picking up on the Intergang tie before they mentioned it. Other than that, I'm not really too prediction-ready this week, though I would like to see Lobo get on the trail of our space-lost heroes.

The Daily Planet

Do you believe there is a Kryptonian secret to Eternal Life? That's the poll question, and the seemingly only new thing up at www.52thecomic.com. Sadly, it looks like this inventive site might be the first casualty of the weekly comic schedule, but only time will tell. Check it out for yourself.

Panel of the Week

C'mon, did you really think it would be anything else this week?


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