December will mark the end of the current Infinite Frontier direction that is being wrapped up by Dark Crisis On Infinite Earths. We see that with majority of DC Comics current ongoings either wrapping up their long-term storylines or having one-shot style issues for December. Then there are various mini-series that have been going on that will also be ending in December. Based on all that DC Comics will be looking to enter 2023 with a complete clean slate. Let’s take a look the notable comic books from DC Comics in based on their December 2023 solicitations.
BATMAN AND SPAWN CROSSOVER
By far the biggest announcements DC Comics had at San Diego Comic-Con 2022 was a new crossover one-shot between Batman and Spawn. This isn’t the first time that Batman and Spawn have had a crossover comic book with each other. The first Batman/Spawn one-shot was written by Frank Miller and drawn by Todd McFarlane in 1994. The second one-shot, Batman/Spawn: War Devil, was written by Doug Moench, Chuck Dixon, and Alan Grant and drawn by Klaus Janson. Both one-shots are being re-released in November leading up to the new Batman/Spawn one-shot releasing in December
This time around Todd McFarlane is on writing duties with Greg Capullo on artwork. It would not at all be surprising if Batman/Spawn is the best selling comic book of 2022. Batman and Spawn have consistently been the top selling comic books on the market. Combining both characters popularity will no doubt result in massive success. Especially with how DC Comics and Todd McFarlane are likely going to market this as a completion of the Batman/Spawn trilogy the closer we get to release all other comic books releasing on December 13th will probably want to rethink that date to one of the other Tuesday’s in the month.
DARK CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS GIVES DCU CLEAN SLATE
The biggest job Dark Crisis On Infinite Earths has is likely to give the DC Universe a clean slate going into 2023. You see that with all the talk about the Multiverse full return and most ongoings conveniently ending their story arcs in December.
Based on the solicitation for Dark Crisis On Infinite Earths #7 we see that the issue will be more of aftermath final chapter as the battle against Pariah will be done in the sixth issue of the event. In dealing with the aftermath not only do we see that Deathstroke and the Secret Society will act as the final bosses of Dark Crisis On Infinite Earths but that we get the return of a major fusion character. That’s right, the Green Lantern fusion between Batman and Superman seen in the recent World’s Finest #4 make a return to deal with Deathstroke’s Dark Army.
Along with that it appears that Nightwing will play a major role in how Dark Crisis On Infinite Earths will conclude as he is on the main cover for the seventh issue. The question is if DC Comics will stick to their promise of exploring what legacy means moving forward for the DC Universe? Or will we be reverting back to the classic DC Universe formula of the core 7 being the focus? Based on the teaser banner featuring Bruce Wayne, Clark Kent, Diana Prince, Hal Jordan, Barry Allen, Billy Batson, and Arthur Curry with Nightwing, Cyborg, and Starfire all clumped into one I would say it is the latter. But we will have to just wait and see how Dark Crisis On Infinite Earths sets up the DCU for 2023 and beyond.
SUPERMAN FIRST TO DEAL WITH DARK CRISIS AFTERMATH
With Dark Crisis On Infinite Earths ending in December our first look at what the DC Universe will look like in 2023 will be Action Comics #1050 releasing on December 27th. That is fitting given that Action Comics #1050 will be also marketed as a major landmark comic book issue, as you can already see with how many variant covers that single issue is getting.
Adding to the importance of Action Comics #1050 is that it will also set the tone for how DC Comics will likely treat their legacy characters. Because throughout 2022 we’ve see DC Comics try to push the idea that Jon Kent is going to be Superman moving forward. Now we see with Action Comics #1050 that Kal-El will be reclaiming the #1 Superman in the DC Universe.
That is at least how they are treating having Kal-El back on Earth as. Which could start 2023 off on a sour note for those that are a fan of how the next generation of characters have been built up throughout 2022. Jon Kent either taking a step back by not being Superman anymore or playing Superman #2 will undo what late 2021 and all of 2022 was about for the DCU.
HARLEY QUINN MULTIVERSE BREAKING
With how important of a pillar character Harley Quinn has become for the DC Comics brand it is fitting that while celebrating her 25th anniversary Harley would get a major Multiverse story. That is what we are getting with Harley Quinn #25 as Harley deals with every version of herself that has ever existed. Given how many alternate universes Harley Quinn has been made a part of in the last decade alone there will be a lot of versions that fans will know well since her character rise during the New 52 and beyond.
The current Harley Quinn series is one that I honestly fell off reading on a monthly basis. Not due to lack of interest but more so because of how much content there is out to consume. But I have been keeping up with it through the DC Universe Infinite app when new issues of the series are released. The story for Harley Quinn #25 sounds like a lot of fun and I have already marked it as one to pick up when it releases to see what Stephanie Phillips has cooked up for this Multiverse story.
BATMAN: URBAN LEGENDS COMES TO AN END
One of my favorite comic books that DC Comics has released during their Infinite Frontier Era has been Batman: Urban Legends. The series is exactly what I’ve been hoping DC Comics would do much more of with all their franchise. That is have a comic book that gives fans three to five stories involved different characters from within each franchise. Batman: Urban Legends is a showcase of how that can work as a spotlight of an entire franchise and the relationships between different combinations of characters. That resulted in some of the best stories that came out of Batman: Urban Legends not involving Batman at all. Instead the Batman Family really stepped up to show how they can carry stories as lead characters, something they already shown time and time again in their ongoings and mini-series.
So I’m definitely sad that Batman: Urban Legends is coming to an end. Though I hope that DC Comics continues to publish anthology-type series that we see work so well with Shonen Jump. Having anthologies for Wonder Woman, Superman, Green Lantern, Flash, and other iconic characters would work very well. Especially if DC Comics intends to focus on how important legacy is to their company an anthology series is a great way to build up all the characters in a franchise rather than giving each character an ongoing right out of the gate that always gets canceled six to ten issues later.