Crisis on Multiple Earths

Author: Gardner Fox
Artist: Mike Sekowsky
Titan Books
RRP 12.99
ISBN 1 84023 553 5

The JLA and JSA must team up to fight a host of villains, from Dr Alchemy to Felix Faust; the Crime Syndicate of Earth Three; an evil version of genie-commanding hero Johnny Thunder; and Antimatter Man, who threatens to destroy both Earths One and Two...

Crisis on Multiple Earths gathers together stories that were originally printed between 1963 and 1966. For those wanting a historical look back at the way things once were in comic book publishing then this is the collection for you. If, on the other hand you have been brought up on the more up-to-date versions of Batman, Superman etc. then this collection will leave you wondering how on earth the genre was ever taken seriously.

This collection seriously talks down to its readers in the most patronising way possible and is very dated in so many ways - Wonder Woman in so the little lady who can't really play with the big boys - When the superheroes must fight their alternate universe doppelgangers all of our heroes end up fighting different enemies but not Wonder Woman. No, she must still fight her alternate universe self. Maybe the writers thought it too implausible that she could fight one of the men!

The artwork is great, from a nostalgic point of view, and the story lines are well conceived, if a little on the lowbrow side. But if you want to see what quality comics were like almost 40 years ago then this is about a good as you are likely to get. There is even an interesting introduction that explains the origins of these 'special' stories.

Nick Smithson

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