Dark Crisis: Big Bang by Mark Waid, Dan Jurgens and Norm Rapmund appears to bring Marvel and DC’s Amalgam Universe back into the latter’s continuity.
The following contains spoilers for Dark Crisis: Big Bang #1, now on sale from DC Comics
Dark Crisis: Big Bang appears to bring DC and Marvel’s shared Amalgam Universe back into the former publisher’s continuity.
Dark Crisis: Big Bang #1 comes from writer Mark Waid, artists Dan Jurgens and Norm Rapmund, colorist Federico Blee and letterer Troy Peteri. The issue sees Barry Allen/The Flash and Wallace West/Kid Flash travel through the multiverse following the return of an infinite number of Earths in the publisher’s Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths event. After Barry and Wallace manage to throw the Anti-Monitor into the Antimatter Universe with some help from heroes from various dimensions, the issue ends with a chart of the newly formed multiverse created by the Flash. “Each Earth is identified by its most noteworthy heroes, villains or characteristics,” a note from Barry reads. “Many, many numbers are, for now, ‘skilled over’ — worlds that require discovery or further examination — making this, I suppose, is a ‘living document’ that can and will be added to.”
Barry’s entry for Earth-1996 points to Marvel and DC’s Amalgam Universe, which coincidentally also launched in 1996. The note reads, “Mysterious ‘amalgamated’ (?) heroes; requires further investigation?”
What Is the Amalgam Universe?
First introduced in the DC vs. Marvel miniseries, the Amalgam Universe is a timeline where Marvel and DC characters are combined into single, hybrid characters. These include a Batman/Wolverine character called Dark Claw, a Moonknight/Dick Grayson character called Moonwing, a Catwoman/Elektra character named Catsai and many more. While the DC vs. Marvel crossover only lasted for four issues, a series of one-shots set in the Amalgam Universe were published between the third and final entries of the miniseries. A second series of one-shots then followed in 1997 after DC vs. Marvel had ended.
Speaking to CBR in an exclusive interview, Waid touched on what it was like bringing characters together from all throughout the multiverse into Dark Crisis: Big Bang. “I wanted to cut across as broad a swath of the various characters and Earths as we could,” he said. “I wanted to make sure that it was disjointed in the sense that you went from the Jurassic League to Western Wonder Woman. I wanted to be able to have that sense of bouncing around. In terms of picking the final battle, the Light Brigade, as Dan put it, [were] chosen to represent Earths that otherwise had not been represented in the book, or frankly, just to scratch an itch. That’s Christopher Reeve Superman in that one shot, and some of that was to scratch an itch.”
Dark Crisis: Big Bang #1 features cover art by Mikel Janín and variant cover art by Ariel Colon, Freddie E. Williams II, Crystal Kung and Nathan Szerdy. The issue is on sale now from DC.