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Original ‘hit list’ reveals a very different ‘Infinite Crisis’

infinite crisis

The 2005-2006 DC Comics crossover Infinite Crisis may be best remembered for Superboy-Prime’s “continuity punch,” and for a staggeringly high body count. However, it turns out that figure could’ve been a little higher, and perhaps even more controversial.

While cleaning his basement, DC Comics Co-Publisher Dan DiDio uncovered the original whiteboard pages laying out the event’s timeline, as well as a “hit list’ (below), which is exactly what it sounds like — a rundown of characters marked for death.

“Always fun to see where we started now that we know where it ended up,” DiDio wrote on his Facebook page.

Nightwing’s inclusion won’t shock anyone: DiDio went on the record as early as 2006 that he had wanted Dick Grayson to be the “big death” of Infinite Crisis; however, writer Geoff Johns and editor Eddie Berganza prevailed (which may explain why Nightwing’s name is crossed out on the page and then rewritten and circled). Some of the other characters on the list — including, Doctor Fate, Fury, Shazam and Tempest — did indeed meet their ends as part of the event. However, there are some surprises involving deaths that either didn’t happen — Atom Smasher, Wildcat, Martian Manhunter — or didn’t unfold as initially planned.

For instance, the very first item appears to read “Kill Superman Marriage,” a feat that wouldn’t actually be accomplished until 2011,  with the launch of DC’s linewide reboot the New 52. Wonder Woman, who infamously snapped Maxwell Lord’s neck, instead — or, hey, also! — could have killed Kal-L, the Superman of Earth-Two, but only after he’d taken out Alexander Luthor Jr. (In the actual crossover, Kal-L dies in a brutal fight with Superboy-Prime, and Alexander Luthor is dispatched by The Joker.) Interestingly enough, Kal-L’s death scene ends up underscoring the importance of the Clark/Lois relationship.

infinite crisis-kal-l death

And then there’s the matter of Young Justice, a team that disbanded well before Infinite Crisis, with several of its members forming new versions of the Teen Titans and Outsiders. With the words “Kill All Non-Used Young Justice,” the few that remained could’ve shared the same fate of former Titans Pantha and Wildebeest. Yet somehow, with the exception of Conner Kent, the Young Justice alums made it through Infinite Crisis.

infinite crisis-hit list

Comments

27 Comments

This is a clear example of the latest years DC.
They only think of the gimmick to publish (death) not of the history behind….

Unabashed DC Fan

January 19, 2015 at 7:49 am

Right, because Marvel never kills off characters for gimmicky reasons *cough* Fear Itself *cough*

There was an almost identical kill list for the original Crisis that was twice as long, as shown in the Absolute Crisis edition, so it ain’t anything new.

Yes both of the does the same, but at least Marvel is making good stories on many of their characters the last years, DC instead looks more and more a revival of the worst of the 90’s…and let me tell you that my favorite character is Superman and I’m a big DC fan.

The saddest part is we can’t do a thing since death it’s still the best gimmick yet.
Superior Spider-man, Death of Wolverine and Original Sin were some of the best selling comics of the last 2014….

Yay, Atom Smasher lived… only to no longer exist in the New 52. Wondrous. Nuklon’s appearing in the upcoming Convergence: Infinity Inc. mini-series but that’s about it.

Infinite Crisis was awfully mediocre. Horrible story.

Poor Golden Age Superman. What a sad and stupid demise for a great character.

That really sucks. Why is this guy in a creative role when all he can think to do is unravel marriages for absolutely no reason at all and kill off characters? Is there anyone besides DiDio who finds that stuff interesting? Are we sure he’s never killed in real life?

This is not a return to the 90s. It’s tarnishing the 90s. I loved the Superman comics of the 90s. None of that stuff exists anymore. Congratulations DiDio, you unmarried Superman and made me quit buying 4 Superman comics a month ad infinitum. Your crusade to close the company is going well for you.

Look, it doesn’t matter if it’s DC or Marvel, killing off characters for shock value to hype and event is stupid. It’s a cheap gimmick that has been played out to the point where it doesn’t hold any sort of emotional weight to see characters die now, because most of us just roll our eyes afterwards. Character deaths should be epic and have meaning. I enjoyed a lot of Infinite Crisis, but what I never enjoyed was seeing people getting butchered as a part of it. It’s a waste of character potential and a waste of story potential.

Having read all three Crises, I can safely say that Infinite Crisis isn’t nearly as bad as people tend to complain it is.

Either way, that list of dead characters is stupid. What’s this guy’s beef against Young Justice? It was leagues better than Teen Titans, and I say that as an unashamed Geoff Johns fan.

Fury was killed in Infinite Crisis? Like Lyta Hall?

INFINITE CRISIS was a bad concept to begin with. Line-wide crossovers are usually bad stories, but the original CRISIS had the saving grace of being one of the first. Doing a remake of it? Argh.

I think @HopelessSavage hits the real point. While the killing off characters is bad the cycle it starts is worse. Because eventually some writer is going to come along and want to use that character again. Which leads to endless resurrection cycles. Or worse when too many shock value events force them to reboot the whole thing.

Think about it, the first Crisis happened after 46 years of DC history. 20 years after that was Infinite Crisis then less than 10 years after that we have the new 52.

It’s like a drug. Gimmicks lead to more gimmicks and each gimmick has to be a little bigger than the last.

Does it say marriage or is it a misspelling of morale? Can’t tell either way with that chicken scratch.

I mostly enjoyed”Infinite Crisis” and I thought that most of the deaths did have some meaning. Unfortunately, it was also a hot mess with its tie-ins and last minute changes, like not killing Nightwing.

For what it’s worth, killing a character isn’t a problem. The problem is that it should always come from the bottom up, not the top down. It should be an idea a creator has that gets approved by editorial–that’s what gives the death meaning, when it comes out of a creative plan.

When an editor decides a character should be killed “just because”, that’s what makes them feel cheap and meaningless.

Crisis on Infinite Earths was infinitely better than Infinite Crisis because Marv Wolfman is a better writer than Geoff Johns.

Plus, George Perez, Dick Giordano, Jerry Ordway and Tony Tollin on art duties is pure awesomeness.:)

Wah wah. Anyway young justice never appealed to most

I liked Infinite Crisis and i loved the great Death of the first golden Age Superman.
Sure I hate the death of Blue Beetle, i liked him. Only after the character isn´t there, than
i m going to miss him. I miss Wally West, Blue Beetle (Ted), the original JSA and Donna Troy.
But i´m happy that Barry Allen is back, he was my favorite DC Character in the 70´s, the Flash i was
growing up with, but Wally West was a great replacement. Too bad the writers end his story with wife & kids.
There was a point of no return. The new 52 Wally West Kid is okay, but Bart Allen 52 was awful. The Pre-52er Kid Flash/ Impulse was much better.

Crisis of infinite Earth was great too, i loved the stuff (and all the x-over books, where never appear in any bookform) and sure because the Death of Flash & Supergirl.

@stancheck: ”I loved the great Death of the first golden Age Superman”

Great death? Really?

If you call ”great Death” being beaten to a bloody pulp by a silly character like Superboy-Prime in a sub-par story…. alright.

So the “original” Superman got killed, all these superhero deaths, and now he’s younger than Batman in the films?

Sounds like Levitz got pushed out at the right time.

I hated Pantha being killed. Her back story/ mystery was never told. What a waste! Also, it’s pretty deplorable that they killed Wildebeest which was a baby. A baby…Horrible!

Not as great as Crisis on Infinite Earths, but still better than Final Crisis or Identity Crisis.

Identity Crisis to Final Crisis got me back into the DCU big time. I loved that storyline very much. (I would have done things differently, but…)

Then One Year Later neutered it. And then the New52 killed it off.

Now I don’t read DC anymore (after giving the New52 a try). All it does is disappoint me, and remind me of a time when I enjoyed their characters.

@kaniole

Clearly you have never read anything by Rick Remender.

Bring back the Superman of the Golden Age, Kal-L!

When Infinite Crisis began, I am not sure there was anyone happier than me to see the return of THE hero of the original Crisis. His role in COIE was tremendous and meaningful. I wanted him to have a new role and be part of a better DCU, especially after Identity Crisis, which was supposed to be the genesis of IC. Then the whole debacle happened with Superboy Prime, which made no sense, along with Alexander’s turning. Then DC teased his return for a couple years, only to compound this completely unnecessary ordeal with Blackest Night. If I could make one request to DC – Please bring back Kal-L and either retire him with dignity or develop/evolve him (White or Blue Lantern perhaps?) and have him become a guiding or useful part of the DCU.

The concept of him being/representing the original Golden Age Superman at the foundation of DC means something. I personally would love to see him find a home on a new Earth-2 with his old JSA teammates. There are still a lot of great tales to tell.

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