THE 52 STEPS: Week One

"Are you ready?" -The Question, "52"

One missing year.

52 real-time comics.

No reprints or trades.

One writer trying to keep track of it all.

Are you ready?

Week One

Previously in the DCU...

The crisis has been averted, both at home and in space. In the aftermath, many heroes, and even a few villains, must decide on their place in the new world order. For Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman, the trinity at the core of the DC Universe, it means time away to re-evaluate. But in a world without the Big Three, what becomes of the rest of the heroes?

The Key Players

Steel, Ralph Dibny, Renee Montoya, Booster Gold, Black Adam, The Question

Guest appearances

Pretty much every hero that's left, Clark Kent and Dr. Sivana.


As the "missing year" begins, Ralph Dibny is on the verge of suicide after the death of his wife and the loss of his home, while Renee Montoya is rapidly drinking herself into oblivion after the death of her partner Crispus Allen and the loss of her lover, who has moved away. Meanwhile, Steel has been traveling around the world aiding those where he can and providing those people caught up in the turmoil (the police, firefighters and EMS crews that have to deal with the fallout from the Society's attack) an explanation of the events, as well as giving new readers a nice summary.

Booster Gold is doing the hero thing, as well, though he's doing it as a corporate shill, with logos for beer and whatever else you can think of decorating his uniform. He is joined by his robot buddy Skeets, and the two anxiously await the end of the week, when the heroes will unite in Metropolis for a memorial service that his history (he's from the 25th Century, remember) declares as the reformation of the Justice League, with him as a member. Meanwhile, Black Adam has returned to his country of Kahndaq intent on ministering justice throughout the world. His first speech, though, is interrupted by a suicide bomber. However, Adam thwarts the bomber and begins a mighty, uh, disarming interrogation.

So the big day comes, and as the remaining heroes unite, Booster is mightily confounded that the Big Three (Superman, Wonder Woman and Batman) have failed to show up. As his concern mounts, Skeets attempts to recheck the history files Booster has been using to make himself a hero, only to shut down rather violently and leave Booster looking like a basket case, who is then told by Clark Kent that the Big Three won't be coming.

Lastly, Ralph receives word that someone has placed a message on his wife's grave, thus stalling his suicide, and Renee returns to her Gotham City apartment, only to be greeted by a spotlight shined in her window. The light, the former Bat-Signal, has been commandeered by The Question, who has marked it with, obviously, a question mark.

Justin's Thoughts and Concerns

  • Didn't the GCPD take down the Bat-Signal a while back? Did I miss when they put it back up?
  • Wasn't it nice to see a Soder Cola after all these years, even if it had to be shilled by Booster?
  • Why kidnap Dr. Sivana?
  • The Superman / Superboy statue is awesome.
  • It was cool to know that Wally and Linda West survived with their twins. Thank you, Bart.
  • Did anyone else notice Nightwing in the background at the memorial service (he's talking with Power Girl)? Since Dick Grayson is on a boat with Bruce Wayne and Tim Drake, is this Jason Todd?
  • I love The Question. Always have, and it's nice to see him get the last line of the issue (see above).


While it's way too early to make any serious calls, I expect to see The Question training Renee Montoya in a similar fashion that he was trained, and, in turn, the way he and Richard Dragon retrained The Huntress. Cross your fingers for a Richard Dragon appearance.

The Daily Planet

Character bios are up, and a few random ads from companies and agencies are pretty neat to look at. Check it out for yourself at www.52thecomic.com.

Crisis: Why Did The Flash Have to Die to Save Infinite Earths?

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