DC Universe

The DC Universe (DCU) is the fictional shared universe where most stories in American comic book titles published by DC Comics take place. DC superheroes such as Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman are from this universe, and it also contains well known supervillains such as Lex Luthor, the Joker, and Darkseid. In context, the term "DC Universe" usually refers to the main DC continuity.

The term "DC Multiverse" refers to the collection of all continuities within DC Comics publications. Within the Multiverse, the main DC Universe has gone by many names, but in recent years has been referred to by "Prime Earth" (not to be confused with "Earth Prime") or "Earth 0".

The main DC Universe, as well as the alternate realities related to it, began as the first shared universe in comic books and were quickly adapted to other media such as film serials or radio dramas. In subsequent decades, the continuity between all of these media became increasingly complex with certain storylines and events designed to simplify or streamline the more confusing aspects of characters' histories.

DC Universe
DC Universe (Alex Ross)
A drawing of DC Comics characters by Alex Ross, illustrating the conflicts between its superheroes and their antagonistic counterparts.
Created byDC Comics
Original work1939 (All Star Comics #3)
OwnerWarner Bros.
Print publications
Novel(s)DC Comics novels
ComicsList of DC Comics publications
Graphic novel(s)DC Comics Graphic Novel Collection
Films and television
Film(s)DC Extended Universe
Batman in film
Superman in film
DC Universe Animated Original Movies
Television seriesArrowverse
Games
TraditionalList of video games based on DC Comics
Audio
Original musicDC Comics film soundtracks
Miscellaneous
ToysDC Universe, DC Universe Classics
Theme park attractionsBatman in amusement parks
Superman in amusement parks
Green Lantern rides (Green Lantern (Six Flags Great Adventure), Green Lantern Coaster, Green Lantern: First Flight (Six Flags Magic Mountain)
Justice League rides (Justice League: Battle for Metropolis, Justice League: Alien Invasion 3D)
Lex Luthor: Drop of Doom
The Joker rides (The Joker (Six Flags Discovery Kingdom), The Joker (Six Flags Mexico), The Joker Funhouse Coaster, The Joker (S&S Worldwide),
DC Comics Super Hero Adventures
DC Rivals HyperCoaster

History

Golden Age

The fact that DC Comics characters coexisted in the same world was first established in All Star Comics #3 (1940) where several superheroes (who starred in separate stories in the series up to that point) met each other in a group dubbed the Justice Society of America. Subsequently, the Justice Society was reintroduced as the Justice League of America, which was founded with Major League Baseball's National League and American League as inspiration for the name. The comic book that introduced the Justice League was titled The Brave and the Bold[1] However, the majority of National/DC's publications continued to be written with little regard of maintaining continuity with each other for the first few decades.

Silver Age

Over the course of its publishing history, DC has introduced different versions of its characters, sometimes presenting them as if the earlier version had never existed, among them the Flash,[2] Green Lantern,[3] and Hawkman,[4] in the late 1950s, with similar powers but different names and personal histories. Similarly, they had characters such as Batman whose early adventures set in the 1940s could not easily be reconciled with stories featuring a still-youthful man in the 1970s. To explain this, they introduced the idea of the Multiverse in Flash #123 (1961) where the Silver Age Flash met his Golden Age counterpart. In addition to allowing the conflicting stories to "co-exist", it allowed the differing versions of characters to meet, and even team up to combat cross-universe threats. The writers gave designations such as "Earth-One", "Earth-Two", and so forth, to certain universes, designations which at times were also used by the characters themselves.[5] Earth-One was the primary world of this publication era.

Crisis on Infinite Earths

Over the years, as the number of titles published increased and the volume of past stories accumulated, it became increasingly difficult to maintain internal consistency. In order to continue publishing stories of its most popular characters, maintaining the status quo became necessary. Although retcons were used as a way to explain apparent inconsistencies in stories written, editors at DC came to consider the varied continuity of multiple Earths too difficult to keep track of, and feared that it was an obstacle to accessibility for new readers. To address this, they published the cross-universe miniseries Crisis on Infinite Earths in 1985, which merged universes and characters, reducing the Multiverse to a single unnamed universe with a single history.[6]

However, not all the books rebooted post-Crisis. For example, the Legion of Superheroes book acted as if the Pre-Crisis Earth-1 history was still their past, a point driven home in the Cosmic Boy miniseries. It also removed the mechanism DC had been using to deal with continuity glitches or storylines that a later writer wanted to ignore (which is how Earths B and E how came into existence) resulting in a convoluted explanation for characters like Hawkman.

The Zero Hour limited series (1994) gave them an opportunity to revise timelines and rewrite the DC Universe history. However this failed right out of the gate as the writers had Waverider state all alternate histories had been wiped and yet have the Armageddon 2001 saga in the timeline which required multiple timelines to work.

As a result, almost once per decade since the 1980s, the DC Universe experiences a major crisis that allows any number of changes from new versions of characters to appear as a whole reboot of the universe, restarting nominally all the characters into a new and modernized version of their lives.

Meanwhile, DC has published occasional stories called Elseworlds, which often presented alternate versions of its characters. One told the story of Bruce Wayne as a Green Lantern. In another tale, Superman: Speeding Bullets, the rocket ship that brought the infant Superman to Earth was discovered by the Wayne family of Gotham City rather than the Kents.

In 1999, The Kingdom reintroduced a variant of the old Multiverse concept called Hypertime which essentially allows for alternate versions of characters and worlds again. The entire process was possibly inspired by Alan Moore's meta-comic, Supreme: Story of the Year (1997).

The Convergence (2015) crossover officially retconned the events of Crisis after heroes in that series went back in time to prevent the collapse of the Multiverse.[7] However, Brainiac states "Each world has evolved but they all still exist".[8] It has been confirmed that all previous worlds and timelines now exist, and that there even multiple Multiverses now in existence, such as the Pre-Crisis infinite Multiverse, the collapsed Earth, and the Pre-New 52 52 worlds Multiverse.

Infinite Crisis

The Infinite Crisis event (2005–2006) remade the DC Universe yet again, with new changes. The limited series 52 (2006–2007) established that a new multiverse now existed, with Earth-0 as the primary Earth.

The New 52

The 2011 reboot of the DC Universe coincided with DC's publishing event The New 52, during which the publisher cancelled its ongoing titles and relaunched 52 new books, including a number of new books, set within a revised continuity. This follows the conclusion of the Flashpoint crossover storyline, which provided a jumping-off point for the existing continuity. A number of in-universe changes are intended to make characters more modern and accessible, though the scope of the changes varies from character to character. Some like Batman have their histories left largely intact, though compressed, while others were given wildly different histories and looks. DC stopped putting 'The New 52' logo on its publications in the summer of 2015, coinciding with the Convergence anniversary crossover event which celebrated the history of the DC Multiverse and its various incarnations.

DC Rebirth

In February 2016, DC announced its DC Rebirth initiative, a line-wide relaunch of its titles, to begin in June 2016. Beginning with an 80-page one-shot which was released on May 25, 2016, DC Rebirth also sees Action Comics and Detective Comics return to their previous numbering (#957 and #934 respectively), all books releasing at US$2.99, multiple books shifting to a twice-monthly release schedule, a number of existing titles relaunching with new #1s, and the release of several new titles.[9][10] DC has used the Green Lantern: Rebirth and The Flash: Rebirth miniseries as examples of the basis for the initiative, which has been described as a rebirth of the DC Universe. The DC Rebirth initiative will reintroduce concepts from pre-Flashpoint continuity, such as legacy, that have been lost with The New 52 and build "on everything that's been published since Action Comics #1 up thru The New 52."[9]

DC Universe

In October 2017, DC revealed that they would be discontinuing the Rebirth branding and logo from their titles in December 2017, releasing everything under a single umbrella title as the "DC Universe". Coincided with the release of the New Age of Heroes imprint, DiDio explained, "We want to make it clear that this is all the DC Universe... Rebirth pretty much is the DCU now; while we're taking Rebirth off the books, we'll be following the direction that Rebirth established." Titles also received new trade dress, with those "that tie in clearly to our larger DC Universe" having a "DCU logo on them" in addition to corner boxes with icons of the characters to help identify the family of titles; titles outside the DCU, such as Injustice: Gods Among Us and DC Bombshells would simply have the DC logo on them. DiDio also added that the Young Animal imprint would continue as a separate line of titles.[11]

Description

Dcu
A "class photo" of DC Universe characters, circa 1986. In this group shot, each character is drawn by either his or her original artist or an artist closely associated with the character.

The basic concept of the DC Universe is that it is just like the real world, but with superheroes and supervillains existing in it. However, there are other corollary differences resulting from the justifications implied by that main concept. Many fictional countries, such as Qurac, Vlatava, and Zandia, exist in it. Though stories are often set in the United States of America, they are as often as not set in fictional cities, such as Gotham City or Metropolis. These cities are effectively archetypes of cities, with Gotham City embodying more of the negative aspects of life in a large city, and Metropolis reflecting more of the positive aspects. Sentient alien species (such as Kryptonians and Thanagarians) and even functioning interstellar societies are generally known to exist, and the arrival of alien spacecraft is not uncommon. Technologies which are only theoretical in the real world, such as artificial intelligence or are outright impossible according to modern science, such as faster-than-light travel, are functional and reproducible, though they are often portrayed as highly experimental and difficult to achieve. Demonstrable magic exists and can be learned. The general history of the fictional world is similar to the real one (for instance, there was a Roman Empire, and World War II and 9/11 both occurred), but many fantastic additions exist, such as the known existence of Atlantis. In recent years, stories have increasingly described events which bring the DC Universe farther away from reality, such as World War III occurring, Lex Luthor being elected as President of the United States in 2000, and entire cities and countries being destroyed. There are other minor variations, such as the Earth being slightly larger than ours (to accommodate the extra countries), and the planet Saturn having 18 moons rather than 19 because Superman destroyed one.

New Earth

"New Earth" is the Earth-like home planet to the main storybook characters of the DC Universe - the one with Smallville where Superman grows up, and Gotham City where Bruce Wayne avenges his parents by becoming Batman.[12][13] This New Earth is part of a larger DC Universe and DC Multiverse.

Originally created from the First Crisis, it was allegedly erased from existence because of the Flashpoint-Convergence effect, being replaced by "Prime Earth". By the end of the storyline Superman Reborn, the timelines of New Earth and Prime Earth have realigned into one single reality.[14]

Superheroes

Many of the superhumans on Earth owe their powers to the "metagene", a genetic feature of unknown origin, which causes some people to develop superpowers when exposed to dangerous substances and forces. Others owe their powers to magic, genetic manipulation (or mutation) or bionics (see below). A large power gap resides between most superheroes and civilians. Still others owe their powers to not being human at all (see races, below). There are also superheroes and supervillains who possess no superhuman powers at all (for example Batman, Robin, Green Arrow or Speedy), but rival their effectiveness with specialized equipment or "to the absolute limit of human potential" training in special skills, such as martial arts.

The humans first began using costumed identities to fight or commit crime during the 1930s. The first superheroes included characters like the Crimson Avenger and The Sandman. In November 1940, the first superhero team, the Justice Society of America, was formed. During World War II, all of America's heroes were banded together as the All-Star Squadron to protect the United States from the Axis powers. However, due to a magical spell cast by Adolf Hitler (using the Spear of Destiny and the Holy Grail) the most powerful heroes were unable to enter Axis-held territories, leaving the war to be fought mainly by normal humans such as Sgt. Rock. After the war, under pressure from the paranoid Committee on Un-American Activities, the JSA disbanded. While many types of heroes were active afterwards (mainly non-costumed, such as the Challengers of the Unknown or Detective Chimp), it was not until Superman's public debut that a new generation of costumed heroes became active. Soon after, the Justice League of America was formed, and they have remained Earth's preeminent superhero team; most DC heroes (such as the Teen Titans) have either belonged to the League at some point, or have connections to it.

As a general rule, being a superhero does not require powers anywhere near omnipotence. Furthermore, even major heroes and cosmic entities have distinct vulnerabilities, such as: Superman's weaknesses to magic, kryptonite, and red sunlight; Green Lantern's initial problems with wood or the color yellow (which have since been largely overcome); or Batman's lack of superhuman powers, which he supplements with keen intellect, constant training, and specialized technology.

Superheroes are generally accepted or even praised—Superman and the Flash actually having museums dedicated to them—by the general public, though some individuals have decided that "the metahumans" must be dealt with less passively. Thus, an organization called "the Dome" was formed to help superheroes who needed to fight crime across international borders; the superhero group called the Global Guardians were their main agents. However the Dome eventually lost out, as its United Nations backing went to the more famous Justice League. In general, DC Comics has led a parody of its own teams and organizations after the Watchmen storyline and the Batman run from a dark humor style which began during the 1980s and ended in the early 90s. Superhero teams such as the Doom Patrol and Justice League International led the writers to have a more subtle approach of semiotic dark humor with its own version of over-powered egos dominating personalities.

The American government has had a more wary approach, however. Back during World War II they started "Project M" to create experimental soldiers to fight in the war, such as the Creature Commandos. Most of these experiments remain a secret to the public. Currently, the government deals with metahumans and similar beings through its Department of Extranormal Operations (DEO), and more recently A.R.G.U.S.. Covertly, they use an organization of costumed (but non-superhuman) agents known as "Checkmate". The government also formed Task Force X (known as the "Suicide Squad") for "black ops". Most members have been captured supervillains (and thus expendable), and were strongly "encouraged" to join (often with offerings of clemency if they survived their extremely dangerous missions).

Outcast personalities are often relegated to the world of DCU supervillainry. They are then usually well versed in heists, kidnappings and robberies. Villains with meek powers contrive schemes of extraordinary complexity, yet—because of their simple talents—they only call the attention of powerless superheroes like Batman, or lesser superheroes like Booster Gold. When caught, any prison sufficient to contain these villains is suitable. More powerful villains strive to contest for greater goals like world domination and/or universal acclaim (from the public and their villainous peers). Usually more powerful enemies are imprisoned in maximum-level facilities—such as Belle Reve Penitentiary (which also was secretly Task Force X's headquarters) and even alternate dimensions or outer space—because they cannot simply be killed by a bullet, electricity, or poison.

Supervillains sometimes also form their own groups, but these tend to be short-lived because most villains simply do not trust each other. Most such teams are formed by a charismatic and/or fearsome criminal mastermind for specific purposes; an example is the Secret Society of Super Villains of which there have been several versions. Most villain teams are usually small, having been formed of individuals who know each other personally, such as the Central City Rogues, or have some other reason to work together (mercenary groups like the H.I.V.E., fanatical cults such as Kobra, etc.).

Advanced technology

Technology more advanced than that which currently exists in real life is available - but it is usually very expensive, and usually only rich or powerful individuals and organizations (or the scientific geniuses who create them) have access to them. S.T.A.R. Labs is an independent research outfit that often develops these devices, while Lexcorp is the main company selling them. The government also runs the secret Project Cadmus (located in the mountains near Metropolis) to develop clones and genetic manipulation without the public's knowledge. Technology can also come from outer space or different timelines. Apokolips weaponry is often sold in Metropolis to the criminal organization known as Intergang.

Robots and similar creations, including cyborgs, can have superior intelligence when they are created as sentient beings. The Manhunters, the Metal Men, Red Tornado, Robotman, Hourman, and Metallo are but a few examples. These 'beings' are most often created by individuals who possess vast intellects, like scientists Professor T.O. Morrow (maker of the Red Tornado), Dr. Will Magnus (who constructed the Metal Men) and Professor Ivo (who fabricated Amazo and other advanced androids using a form of Nano-technology developed by Lexcorp). Brainiac also emulates this technology as well as technology from other worlds. Similarly, some characters use technology to enhance their armor or modify cybernetic functions, for example Steel, Cyborg and the Cyborg Superman.

Hidden races

There are a few intelligent races living on Earth that the public at large did not know about until recent times. Among these are the Amazons of Themyscira and Bana-Mighdall and the last survivors of Atlantis, who changed themselves into water-breathing forms, including the human-like Poseidonians and the mermaid-like Tritonians. Other species, such as Warworlders, were brief test subjects of Project Cadmus who fled to the Underworld below Metropolis. There is also a tribe of highly intelligent, telepathic gorillas living in Gorilla City, an invisible city hidden in Africa; this is the home of Gorilla Grodd.

Certain creatures created such as angelic beings, timeline driven entities, experimental deformities and dimension creatures are not considered hidden races because it is simply not included. However, it is only because most monsters play a less substantial role in the DC Universe. The plot-lines of Dinosaur Island and Skartaris are but a few examples of the experiments the DC universe contrives, yet its role in DC comics are played down when in comparison to other companies, therefore they are included as being a race from Earth. An easternized influence is more evident in most Marvel Comics literature, while DC Comics are exaggerated, under-influenced or sustained into the belief of comical parodies; e.g. the story-line of the alien, Monstergirl, and her affluent life-style as a teenage recluse who turns into a monster or the purpose of Asmodel, an angelic inter-dimensional being from a conceptual Heaven who comes to Earth. Therefore, these particular races are not considered hidden but alien and extra-dimensional (see the following sections below for reference).

Aliens

There are many intelligent extraterrestrial races as well. Curiously, a large number of them are humanoid, even human-like, in form (such as Kryptonians, who outwardly appear identical to Earth-born humans); some can even interbreed with Terrans. Some of these races have natural superpowers, but they are usually the same for all individuals of the same race, unlike Earth's metahumans. This was explained by the fact that in Earth's distant past Martians experimented on humanity, severely culling the metahuman potential; this means that a species that was meant to have a wide range of powers, like Tamaranians or Kryptonians, ended up "just...human". However, there are also plenty of nonhumanoid races.

The DC Universe has had many natural and cosmic disasters happen to their alien civilizations. The Martians were destroyed by war, the Kryptonians by a dying planet that exploded, and the Czarnians by a plague. Even the Almeracian Empire was victim to impending destruction by Imperiex.

Order is kept around the galaxy by the Guardians of the Universe and their agents, the Green Lantern Corps. Rival peacekeeping organizations include the Darkstars (created by the Guardians' rivals, the Controllers) and the interplanetary mercenary organization L.E.G.I.O.N.. Criminal organizations include the Manhunters, the Spider Guild and the Dark Circle.

Most aliens are from different planets, who have a source of origin near the Solar System and in the Milky Way Galaxy, although, unlike the Marvel Universe, alien colonies are common within the solar system. The Dominators are an imperialistic race of terrorist aliens who control most of the unknown cosmos in order to extract genetic resources from planets. The caste is also collectively known as the Dominion. Other aliens in the outlying galaxies control armadas like the Khunds, Gordanians, Thanagarians, Spider Guild and, most recently, the Reach. Even though the majority of the DC Universe is policed by the Green Lantern Corps, and later the United Planets, most rogue races strive to conquer the known universe.

One oddity is the Vegan star system. Due to an arrangement with the Psions, the Guardians did not intervene in that system, allowing a cruel empire called "the Citadel" to govern there, until it was overthrown by the Omega Men.

Cosmic entities

The Presence is the God of the DC Universe; he created all reality. He is also the most powerful being in the Multiverse and beyond.

There are several lesser beings in the DC universe that possess god-like powers, through energy manipulation, magic ability, or technological advancement. Magic and the supernatural are often depicted as being real in the DC Universe, though some skeptics, such as Mister Terrific, maintain that there are scientific explanations to all such events. The narration of the mystic and harsh dark reality is more common in DC's Vertigo Comics because its stories lurk outside of superhero fantasy; the Vertigo series have beings that relate better to civilian life, although both universes are subject to fantastical realms and unworldly dimensions. Magic is too powerful in the physical world, where harnessing magic can distort and even destroy reality if not properly controlled (e.g., if a Lord of Order succumbs to certain events, so will a Lord of Chaos).

There are several types of cosmic entities, such as:

  • Gods: The first beings calling themselves 'gods' first appeared billions of years ago on another planet, but they destroyed themselves in a terrible war. This unleashed the "Godwave", a wave of cosmic energy from the Source. This gave birth to other gods across the universe, including Earth’s. From the planet’s remains the worlds of Apokolips and New Genesis were formed, inhabited by beings that call themselves the "New Gods". The Source Wall is an archetype of Buddha on the edge of the known galaxy. Certain speedsters believe in enlightenment in order to become part of the Speed Force (see below). Kismet is an immortal god and the embodiment of reality. She was matched with Marvel's Eternity in JLA/Avengers. In mortal form she was a member of the Lords of Order. Depending on the characters, other diverse religious deities from ancient cultures are common. Heroes such as Aztek and Black Condor, or villains like Black Adam, have found knowledge of their native roots in origin.
  • Death represents different characters in the DC Universe. One personification of death is the Black Flash, who can represent Death as an internal figure for the speedsters in the DC Universe. Another is Death (see below), who resides at the very end of time. The Black Racer appears as Death in the afterlife. There also is Nekron, lord of the Land of the Unliving, who is the embodiment of Death as the ultimate opponent. Death is also one of the Endless, and is the ultimate personification of Death in the DCU.
  • The Lords of Chaos and Order: These two groups of magical beings have been fighting against each other since the beginning of time and they often empower others (with "Order Magic" or "Chaos Magic") in exchange for their acting as their agents. Many magical heroes and villains have been manipulated by them. The Lords of Chaos and Order were killed by the Spectre in Day Of Vengeance: Infinite Crisis Special #1.
  • Elementals: The Earth itself has a living spirit called "Maya" who, for millennia, has been creating champions, one for each of the mystical elements, to protect itself, using human beings as their hosts. The Swamp Thing, Firestorm, Naiad and the Red Tornado were some of them.
  • Homo magi: a species of humanity with the natural ability to use magic, this race almost disappeared after too much crossbreeding with normal humans (it is from them that people in the DC Universe inherited the ability to use magic). The last pure-blooded ones decided to retire to a magical invisible city centuries ago and are now known as "the Hidden Ones". Zatanna knows many of the race's secrets, and Traci Thirteen is currently investigating magical and occult phenomena for the Croatoan Society—both women had Homo magi mothers.
  • The Endless: Physical manifestations of eternal and universal phenomena that affect the human condition (Destiny, Death, Dream, Destruction, Despair, Desire and Delirium), principally recounted in the Modern Age Sandman series.
  • Emotional Manifestations: Like the Endless, these beings were created from the emotional energy generated by sentient beings. Each of the seven emotional manifestations of the DCU is represented by a different color (rage - red; greed - orange; fear - yellow; will - green; hope - blue; compassion - indigo; love - violet) and being. The various power-ring based corps of the DCU, most notably the Green Lantern Corps and Sinestro Corps, utilize the energies of these beings.
  • Wizards and Sorcerers: Various sorcerers lurk in the DCU. Dr. Fate, Circe, the wizard Shazam, Mordru and Felix Faust are written as characters who use sorcery to both create and destroy. Dimensions, rituals and spiritual realms are sources for magic power as seen in Ras al Ghul's Lazarus Pit, Doctor Occult's use of the astral plane and the transformations of Captain Marvel.
  • Demons: Demonic entities vary from Etrigan the Demon to Blaze, Satanus and Neron. Demonic entities are abundant and come from Hell although some, like Eclipso the vengeance demon (also referred to as the Prince of Darkness), reside on the Moon. Demonic entities from Wonder Woman comics are directly linked to Greek mythology such as Hades and Ares. In the Vertigo comics, characters like John Constantine oppose demons influenced by Christian mythology. Most demons are not, however, directly linked to demonology.
  • The Monitors were incredibly powerful cosmic beings. Originally, a Monitor and an Anti-Monitor were byproducts of the event that created the Multiverse. As archenemies, they fought for billions of years, before enlisting the help of warriors and causing the Crisis, during which both were killed. After the Multiverse was reborn, the origins of the Monitors was revised. In the Post-Crisis continuity, the Monitors were a vast civilization tasked with protecting and guiding the various worlds of the Multiverse. They were also vampires and had to resist the urge to feed on the universes that they were born to protect.

Other dimensions

The DC Universe is composed of a number of different dimensional planes, most notably parallel Earths (see Multiverse), but the latter were eliminated when reality was altered by the Anti-Monitor (although stories featuring parallel Earths have continued to crop up with various rationalizations in the following years). Other types of dimensions still exist, however, including the Antimatter Universe of Qward, the Pax dimension, the Fifth Dimension and the Bleed. Prison dimensions, such as the Phantom Zone, are meant to house superpowered criminals who are too powerful for any conventional means of containment. Dimensions make up many universes, of which some are created and destroyed with help from supernatural forces and elements from which power is drawn. As well, certain dimensions function as crossover opportunities for heroes from different comic book companies to interact, either from competing companies, or from companies absorbed by competitors. The most notable example of the first kind of crossover has been between Marvel Comics and DC Comics, and the latter with Wildstorm Comics. An example of the latter kind of crossover would be DC's acquisition of Fawcett Comics, Quality Comics, and Charlton Comics and the absorption into the DC continuity of the original Captain Marvel, Plastic Man and Captain Atom. In this way, heroes originally published by different companies are now part of the same fictional universe, and interactions between such characters are no longer considered intercompany crossovers.

Additionally, the Marvel Comics Universe is also said to exist in the DC Universe as one of the many alternative universes. The reverse may also be said with respect to the Marvel Universe. This is one method of explaining the various crossover stories co-published by the two companies.

Heaven and Hell

Heaven and Hell exist in the DC Universe but may not exist in the same continuum. Versions vary from the Vertigo and DC Universe series with writers of the Vertigo Universe depicting them in relation to religion and mythology while the writers in the DCU have a tendency to narrate fantasy.

Speed Force

The Speed Force is an extradimensional energy source which provides the speedsters of the DC Universe with their powers. Accessing the Speed Force makes it possible to run at incredible speeds, even faster than light, and even to jump in and out of the timestream, thereby travelling - albeit with a limited degree of control - through time. The Speed Force also acts as a kind of Valhalla for deceased speedsters. The Flash: Rebirth reveals that Barry Allen is a living generator of the Speed Force ever since the accident that transformed him into the Flash.

The timestream

It is possible to travel in time in this universe by several means, including moving faster than the speed of light. The Legion of Super-Heroes from 1,000 years into the future in particular have access to time-travel technology (although the threeboot Legion lacks time travel technology) while Rip Hunter is the present day authority of the technology. Originally, it was impossible to change the past, or to exist in two places at the same time (a time traveler appearing in an era where they already existed would become an ineffectual, invisible phantom while there). However that was all changed after the Anti-Monitor tried to change history at the beginning of time during the Crisis on Infinite Earths. Also, a number of alternate realities-known as Hypertime-now exist. A group calling itself the Linear Men formed to prevent anyone from changing history. In addition, an enormously powerful being called the Time Trapper, an enemy of the Legion, has been known to manipulate the timestream, even creating "pocket universes".

DC Universe comics

  • DC Universe: Legacies
  • DC Universe Online: Legends

In other media

Film

Television

Animation

Toys

Video games

See also

References

  1. ^ Eury, Michael (2005). The Justice League Companion. TwoMorrows Publishing. p. 10. ISBN 1-893905-48-9. The readers were more familiar with 'League' from the National League and the American League.
  2. ^ Showcase #4 (September–October 1956)
  3. ^ Showcase #22 (September–October 1959)
  4. ^ The Brave and the Bold #34 (February–March 1961)
  5. ^ Gardner Fox (w), Carmine Infantino (p), Joe Giella (i). "Flash of Two Worlds" The Flash #123 (1961)
  6. ^ Crisis (1986) #11
  7. ^ Vaneta Rogers (27 May 2015)"MAJOR SPOILERS: DC's CONVERGENCE Concludes, Undoes [Redacted]" Newsarama
  8. ^ Convergence #8
  9. ^ a b Ching, Albert (February 18, 2016). "EXCLUSIVE: GEOFF JOHNS DETAILS "REBIRTH" PLAN, SEEKS TO RESTORE LEGACY TO DC UNIVERSE". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved February 20, 2016.
  10. ^ Marston, George (February 18, 2016). "DC Reveals Full Rebirth Line-Up, New Titles". Newsarama. Retrieved February 20, 2016.
  11. ^ Biggers, Cliff (October 25, 2017). "DC's Eventful December". Comic Shop News. No. 1584.
  12. ^ Jeff Sellars Light Shining in a Dark Place: Discovering Theology through Film 2012 ISBN 1610973097 "New Earth is the home planet to the main storybook characters of the DC Universe.
  13. ^ Tim Leong Super Graphic: A Visual Guide to the Comic Book Universe ISBN 1452135274- 2013 "So, the DC Comics world you're most familiar with—the one where Superman grows up in Smallville and Bruce Wayne decides to avenge his parents by becoming Batman—(a.k.a. New Earth) is actually a part of a larger “multiverse” .
  14. ^ Superman #18-19, Action Comics #975-976

External links

DC Comics

DC Comics, Inc. is an American comic book publisher. It is the publishing unit of DC Entertainment, a subsidiary of Warner Bros. since 1967. DC Comics is one of the largest and oldest American comic book companies, and produces material featuring numerous culturally iconic heroic characters including: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter, Nightwing, Green Arrow, Aquaman, Hawkman, Cyborg and Supergirl.

Most of their material takes place in the fictional DC Universe, which also features teams such as the Justice League, the Justice Society of America, the Suicide Squad, and the Teen Titans, and well-known villains such as The Joker, Lex Luthor, Catwoman, Darkseid, Sinestro, Brainiac, Black Adam, Ra's al Ghul and Deathstroke. The company has also published non-DC Universe-related material, including Watchmen, V for Vendetta, and many titles under their alternative imprint Vertigo.

The initials "DC" came from the company's popular series Detective Comics, which featured Batman's debut and subsequently became part of the company's name. Originally in Manhattan at 432 Fourth Avenue, the DC Comics offices have been located at 480 and later 575 Lexington Avenue; 909 Third Avenue; 75 Rockefeller Plaza; 666 Fifth Avenue; and 1325 Avenue of the Americas. DC had its headquarters at 1700 Broadway, Midtown Manhattan, New York City, but it was announced in October 2013 that DC Entertainment would relocate its headquarters from New York to Burbank, California in April 2015.Random House distributes DC Comics' books to the bookstore market, while Diamond Comic Distributors supplies the comics shop specialty market. DC Comics and its longtime major competitor Marvel Comics (acquired in 2009 by The Walt Disney Company, WarnerMedia's main competitor) together shared approximately 70% of the American comic book market in 2017.

DC Rebirth

DC Rebirth is a 2016 relaunch by American comic book publisher DC Comics of its entire line of ongoing monthly superhero comic book titles. Using the end of The New 52 initiative in May 2016 as its launching point, DC Rebirth restored the DC Universe to a form much like that prior to the "Flashpoint" storyline while still incorporating numerous elements of The New 52, including its continuity. It also saw many of its titles move to a twice-monthly release schedule, along with being released at US$2.99.

DC Comics ended the Rebirth branding in December 2017, opting to include everything under a larger "DC Universe" banner and naming. The continuity established by Rebirth continues into DC Universe.

DC Universe (streaming service)

DC Universe is a video-on-demand service operated by DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. Digital Networks. It was announced in April 2017, with the title and service formally announced in May 2018. The service includes original television programming, access to select animated series and films from DC's back catalogue, a rotating selection of comics from DC Comics, forum discussion space, and a merchandise store. DC Universe launched in a beta state in late August 2018, with its full release on September 15, 2018.

DC Universe Animated Original Movies

The DC Universe Animated Original Movies (also known as DC Universe Original Movies or DC Universe Movies) are direct-to-video film projects being created by Warner Premiere, Warner Bros. Animation, and DC Comics. These more recent movie projects have also included many of the voice actors who worked on previous DC animated series and films.

DC Universe Online

DC Universe Online (DCUO) is a free-to-play action combat massive multiplayer online game set in the fictional universe of DC Comics. Developed by Daybreak Game Company and co-published by Daybreak Game Company and WB Games, the game was released on January 11, 2011.

DC animated universe

The DC Animated Universe (DCAU; also referred to as the Timmverse or Diniverse by fans) is the shared universe centered on a group of animated television series based on DC Comics, produced by Warner Bros. Animation from the early 1990s to mid-2000s; beginning with Batman: The Animated Series in 1992, and ending with Justice League Unlimited in 2006. Some parts of the associated media franchise including direct-to-video feature films and shorts, comic books, video games and other multimedia adaptations are also included in the continuity.

Doom Patrol (TV series)

Doom Patrol is an American web television series based on the DC Comics superhero team Doom Patrol created by Arnold Drake, Bob Haney, and Bruno Premiani that premiered on February 15, 2019 and consists of 15 episodes, on DC Universe. It is a spin-off of Titans, with April Bowlby, Brendan Fraser and Matt Bomer reprising their roles. Filming began in Georgia in late August 2018.

Harley Quinn (TV series)

Harley Quinn is an upcoming American adult animation web television series based on the Harley Quinn character created by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm that is set to premiere in October 2019 on DC Universe. The series is set to be written and executive produced by Justin Halpern, Patrick Schumacker, and Dean Lorey and will follow the misadventures of the Joker's psychotic ex-girlfriend and partner-in-crime, Harley Quinn, and her best friend, Poison Ivy.

List of locations of the DC Universe

Locations in the DC Universe, the shared universe setting of DC Comics.

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe is a crossover fighting video game between Mortal Kombat and the DC Comics fictional universe, developed and published by Midway Games (their last entry in the franchise before they would go bankrupt in 2009 and sold the franchise to Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment). The game was released on November 16, 2008 and contains characters from both franchises. Its story was written by comic writers Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray. Despite being a crossover, the game is considered to be the eighth installment in the main Mortal Kombat series, as evidenced by the naming of the tenth entry by this count: Mortal Kombat X. The game was followed by a Mortal Kombat reboot in 2011 and by Injustice: Gods Among Us in 2013.

The game takes place after Raiden, Earthrealm's god of thunder, and Superman, Metropolis' defender, repel invasions from both their worlds. An attack by both Raiden and Superman simultaneously in their separate universes causes the merging of the Mortal Kombat and DC villains, Shao Kahn and Darkseid, resulting in the creation of Dark Kahn, whose mere existence causes the two universes to begin merging; if allowed to continue, it would result in the destruction of both. Characters from both universes begin to fluctuate in power, becoming stronger or weaker.

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe was developed using Epic Games' Unreal Engine 3 and is available for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 platforms. It is the first Mortal Kombat title developed solely for seventh generation video game consoles. Most reviewers agreed that Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe was entertaining and made good use of its DC Universe license, but the game's lack of unlockable features as opposed to past installments of Mortal Kombat and toned-down finishing moves garnered some criticism.

Robot Chicken DC Comics Special

Robot Chicken DC Comics Special is an episode of the television comedy series Robot Chicken and it was aired as a one-off special during Cartoon Network's Adult Swim on September 9, 2012.

A DC Universe special, in collaboration with DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. Animation. Voice actors are Seth Green as Batman, Robin and Aquaman, Paul Reubens as the Riddler, Neil Patrick Harris as Two-Face, Alfred Molina as Lex Luthor, Nathan Fillion as the Green Lantern, Megan Fox as Lois Lane, Breckin Meyer as Superman, and Kevin Shinick as the narrator. Cast also includes Abraham Benrubi, Alex Borstein, Clare Grant, Tara Strong, Matthew Senreich, Aaron Paul, Steven Tyler, Tom Root and Zeb Wells. It was followed by the Robot Chicken DC Comics Special 2: Villains in Paradise, which premiered April 6, 2014.

Swamp Thing (2019 TV series)

Swamp Thing is an upcoming American superhero horror drama web television series based on the DC Comics character of the same name. It is set to premiere in 2019 on DC Universe.

The New 52

The New 52 was the 2011 revamp and relaunch by DC Comics of its entire line of ongoing monthly superhero comic books. Following the conclusion of the "Flashpoint" crossover storyline, DC cancelled all of its existing titles and debuted 52 new series in September 2011 with new first issues. Among the renumbered series were Action Comics and Detective Comics, which had retained their original numbering since the 1930s.

The relaunch included changes to the publishing format; for example, print and digital comics began to be released on the same day. New titles were released to bring the number of ongoing monthly series to fifty-two. Various changes were also made to DC's fictional universe to entice new readers, including changes to DC's internal continuity to make characters more modern and accessible. In addition, characters from the Wildstorm and Vertigo imprints were absorbed into the DC Universe.The New 52 branding ended after the completion of the "Convergence" storyline in May 2015, although the continuity of The New 52 continued. In June 2015, 24 new titles were launched, alongside 25 returning titles, with several of those receiving new creative teams. In February 2016, DC announced their Rebirth initiative with the release of an 80-page one-shot on May 25, 2016, and continuing through late 2016.

Titans (2018 TV series)

Titans is an American web television series that is released on DC Universe, based on the DC Comics team Teen Titans. Akiva Goldsman, Geoff Johns, and Greg Berlanti created the series, which features Brenton Thwaites as Dick Grayson / Robin, the leader of the Titans, alongside Anna Diop as Starfire, Teagan Croft as Raven and Ryan Potter as Beast Boy. Titans premiered on October 12, 2018, and its first season comprised eleven episodes. Ahead of the series' premiere, Titans was renewed for a second season.

A live-action series based on the Teen Titans entered development in September 2014 for the cable channel TNT, with Goldsman and Marc Haimes writing the pilot. The pilot had been ordered by December 2014, but never came to fruition, with TNT announcing in January 2016 it would no longer be moving forward with the project. In April 2017, it was announced that the series was being redeveloped for DC Comics' new direct-to-consumer digital service, with Goldsman, Johns, and Berlanti attached. Brenton Thwaites was cast as Dick Grayson in September 2017, and other series regulars were cast between August and October 2017. In May 2018, the spin-off series Doom Patrol was announced, which will pick up after the events of Titans.

Who's Who in the DC Universe

Who's Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe (usually referred to as Who's Who) is the umbrella title for a number of comic book series which DC Comics published to catalogue the wide variety of fictional characters in their imaginary universe, the DC Universe.

Young Justice (TV series)

Young Justice is an American animated television series developed by Brandon Vietti and Greg Weisman for Cartoon Network. Despite its title, it is not a direct adaptation of Peter David, Todd Dezago and Todd Nauck's Young Justice comic series, but rather an adaptation of the entire DC Universe with a focus on young superheroes.The series follows the lives of teenage superheroes and sidekicks who are members of a fictional covert operation group referred to simply as 'the team'. Young Justice is essentially a young counterpart to the famous adult team, the Justice League. The main setting is a fictional universe apart from the previous DCAU and other continuities (designated at one point as Earth-16) during a time period in which superheroes are a relatively recent phenomenon.The series debuted with an hour-long special on November 26, 2010, with the airing of the first two episodes, "Independence Day" and "Fireworks". Young Justice premiered on September 9, 2011, on Teletoon, in Canada. After airing its second season, titled Young Justice: Invasion, the series was canceled alongside fellow DC Nation show Green Lantern: The Animated Series in spring 2013.

On November 7, 2016, Warner Bros. Animation announced that the series would be returning for a third season, titled Young Justice: Outsiders, which premiered on January 4, 2019 on DC Universe.

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