The 52 Steps: Week Thirty-Eight

"…Like a butterfly…" - The Question

Week Thirty-Eight

Previously in 52...

Booster Gold Returns! Then runs like hell as Skeets eats the Phantom Zone! Animal Man Lives!

This Week's Key Players

Renee Montoya and the Question, Steel.

Guest Appearances

The Island of Misfit Scientists, Dr. Mid-Nite, Beast Boy, Natasha Irons.


After the stunning pace of last week's issue, this week takes it down a notch, with Renee Montoya taking much of the week to try and get Vic Sage, The Question, to the mystical realm of Nanda Parbat in the hopes of finding a cure for his cancer. Lost in the mountains, freezing to death, and slowly running out of morphine for Vic's pain, Renee is determined to save him, only to collapse at the gates of Nanda Parbat, cradling Vic in her arms. But, as always, he puts one final challenge to her: it's not about who she is, but who she must become.

Off on Gilligan's Island, the mad scientists see their madness unveils, as three of the "Four Horsemen" listed in the Book of Crime are completed. But, oddly enough, a few of the scientists, including Will Magnus and Veronica Cale, seem almost disturbed by what they have unleashed. In the meantime, it looks like Will is almost done with his new Plutonium Man…

A little closer to home, Dr. Mid-Nite and Steel, joined by Beast Boy, continue the autopsy procedures on some of Lex Luthor's heroes that were killed on New Year's Eve. While discovering more about the madness in Luthor's mind, the team receives a message from Natasha, who is on her way to Lex's office to see if she can find some answers in this madness, though her prospects aren't too bright, especially with those other Infinity Inc. kids about to find her.

Back-up feature

"The Origin of The Red Tornado" (the robot one, not Ma Hunkel) from Mark Waid and Phil Jimenez.

Justin's Thoughts and Concerns

  • Can we please just let Vic die already? We're destined to lose him, so can we just stop the torture, please? For him and for us?
  • Look for Will's Plutonium Man to be the one way to stop the Four Horsemen.
  • Speaking of, doesn't that one Horseman look a lot like the Tyrant from the "Resident Evil" games? I think so.
  • Can we get an actual copy of the Book of Crime? Get Greg Cox on that when he's done rewriting "52" into prose…

Looking Ahead

Aside from the madness of the Horsemen, I'd like to talk about that mystery image we saw courtesy of DC this week, as well as the accompanying quote from the Book of Jeremiah. This, my friends, confirms the final fate of Vic Sage, but it's also got some tidbits about the coming times, and what are we about in this part of the column if not looking to the future? Some think this heralds the return of the Multiverse, some worry it's the start of World War III or "Countdown." At the moment, though, let us just consider this: look at how some characters are looking to the sky ahead, while some are looking to the skies beyond… whatever is coming, gang, it's big…

Panel of the Week

Was he a man who dreamt he was a butterfly, or a butterfly who dreamt he was a man?

Keanu Reeves Fantastic Four
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