Who's Crisis Part 3: Bats in the Belfry

It's back by popular demand! Our exploration of whether or not Who's Who was actually a spotter's guide for the Crisis on Infinite Earths (go back one, to Part 2). In other words, did all the (non-licensed, sorry Babe of Atari Force) entries in Who's Who then feature in either the Crisis series or one of its tie-ins? As we embark on Who's Who #2, we might wonder if the Batman Family was as obvious an inclusion as we think today...
Automan: Star Hawkins' robot body does NOT appear in Crisis (neither does Hawkins, for that matter). I'm thinking maybe the different futures of the DCU, as exemplified by its science fiction strips, were one complication too many. It would have been pretty cool, however, if they'd put in the work to say some of them were the futures of other Earths. Ah well. Automan's last appearance before this was in DC Comics Presents #33, "Whatever Will Happen To Star Hawkins?", five years before Crisis.
Azrael: The winged alien that had been appearing in Marv Wolfman's New Teen Titans at this time, of COURSE shows up in Crisis. Issue 6 has him hanging around with Earth-2's winged heroes, among others. Seen above saying something crappy about Katana. Marv might have given him a bigger role, but I'm glad he doesn't.
Balloon Buster: The WWI hero gets a whole half page in #9, looking up at the red skies and decided to fly into them anyway. His previous appearances was three years before in Unknown Soldier #267 (fighting Enemy Ace).
Baron Bedlam: Seeing as this villain died creating the Outsiders in Batman and the Outsiders #2, I wouldn't expect him to show up... except that he had just been resurrected in #32. The book never sported a Crisis banner.
Baron Blitzkrieg: He had appeared only four months before the first Crisis banner was slapped on All-Star Squadron, but alas, did not turn up in either the core series or ASS.
Baron Winters: You'd think Wolfman would want his creations, Night Force and Baron Winters to appear, but it doesn't seem like he found a place for them in Crisis. Their series had ended two years before. Winters would appear just after Crisis in the pages of Saga of the Swamp Thing.
The Barren Earth: Conqueror of the Barren Earth was being published during Crisis, but the macro-series did not confirm it as part of the DC Multiverse. Alas. Cuz I would have loved to see more of Jinal later.
Batcave: Don't know if this counts, but at one point, Anthro's tribe comes out of a cave in Wayne Manor. I guess that's the Batcave a million years hence. We don't see the real deal though.
Batgirl: Though semi-retired, Batgirl has a crucial scene with Supergirl in issue 4 (repeated in DCCP #86), making her the perfect hero to give the Maid of Might a eulogy (in issue 7).
Bat Lash: Used through Crisis 3 to 5, he and other western stars find one of those Monitor towers in a mine. They later team up with Green Lanterns and Cyborg (we see more of it in Green Lantern tie-in issues). Bat Lash wasn't a forgotten hero by any means, having had stories in Jonah Hex 4 years before, and guest-starring in Justice League of America #198-199 only 3 years earlier.
Batman I: The Earth-2 Batman is dead in the present, but still alive in the 40s, so he does score a couple of cameos as the emergency forces the All-Star Squadron to call in the reserves. He'll also appear for the Crisis-adjacent photo from which he disappears as the sole universe settles. As a dead hero, he appears in Crisis #7 along with two more of the dead on the Monitor's screens.
Batman II: The Batman of Earth-1, though he doesn't evoke cosmic adventures, has to appear in Crisis. He's in almost every issue, and Detective Comics #558 is a Crisis tie-in. As the Crisis starts, he's fighting the Joker, and then a disintegrating Flash shows up to warn him of what's coming (a scene stolen for Batman vs. Superman). He then hangs with the Titans and Outsiders for most of the event. The most he gets to do is clock Calendar Man on Earth-X. When the many Earths become one, we see his origin happen all over again (MARTHAAAAAAAAA!!!).
Batman's stuff: Strangely, neither the Batmobile, nor any of the other vehicles, are used. The most I can show here is that Batman goes for some bat-solvent in his belt in Crisis #2.
Bat-Mite: No doubt one of those characters the editorial offices wanted expunged, the imp doesn't rate an appearance. I knew that because of Ambush Bug #3, THE guide to who's not in Crisis, but I still had to check. At this point, Bat-Mite had last appeared in Brave and the Bold #200 (1983), in his own story written and drawn by Stephen DeStefano. Mike Barr would reference him in Outsiders #6 (1986), and then no sighting until Legends of the Dark Knight #38 (1992).
Batwoman: A couple years before Crisis, Kathy Kane had appeared in The Brave and the Bold #197's "Autobiography of Bruce Wayne", but as she was dead, it seems they opted not to use her in Crisis. Shame, because that would have been her last chance.

Annnnd that's the mid-point of issue 2. We're up to a whopping 7 out of 15 NOT used in Crisis, two of them members of the Batman Family (unthinkable today). Let's look at our total: 30/44 USED. Maybe the second half can do better...

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ah, a Barren Earth fan ... I knew you were a man of taste. I think you're right about Barren Earth being outside continuity, like Atari Force. The thing that bothers me most about Barren Earth is that it ended on a cliffhanger and I doubt we'll ever get a resolution.

Mike W.

Anonymous said...

Could you do more of these?. Please

 

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