Every Wednesday, we speak with author Daniel H. Wilson for a detailed recap of Earth 2: World’s End, the weekly DC Comics title he’s spearheading about an alternate earth devastated by its prolonged war with Apokolips. In this Blastr exclusive, we explore the issue with Wilson on the day it hits stands and offer a sneak peek at what readers can look for in future installments.
After Clark Kent sacrificed himself to shut down Desaad’s factories, this issue sees the survivors emerging from the fire pits in time to join the avatars' fight against the furies. Meanwhile, there are brief moments of reflection for our characters -- at least until an alien baby bursts onto the scene at the end of the issue. Wilson discusses this, as well as the ascendance of Power Girl as the new Superman, and what her role -- and changes to the costume -- might mean.
We start off with the Parliament feeling pretty threatened. Is this a unique situation for these guys?
I think it's pretty unique. I don't think these guys are used to having to come together, and work together. It is unprecedented to have all these avatars active at once. They are in a tough spot.
Yolanda Montez was introduced to us in beast form, but we begin to spend some time with her as a human. Will we be seeing a lot of her?
Absolutely. She is now one of the avatars, so she's joining the others to do battle, and we're going to see her more in the rest of this series -- and in the future.
So, beyond Earth 2: World's End?
I can only speak for this, but yeah, beyond World's End. I don't know exactly why I had to keep her alive, but ... now I'm giving stuff away. I don't know how she'll be used in the future, but I know she's a character that hangs around.
She has vengeance on her mind now that she's been released from the control of Desaad. Is she going to give in to being a mindless monster in pursuit of that?
I guess she does hulk out, doesn't she? She does have revenge on her mind, but she has the link to the Parliament that keeps her from being a total savage.
There's a lot of extended time spent in battle between the furies and avatars in this issue; what was enjoyable about writing these scenes?
This is a culmination of a lot of things. They got all the pieces together in order to win the fight. We've seen it go back and forth, and it's been a really epic struggle. They get rid of one fury, then the replacement comes, and it goes back and forth. Now they have the avatar they need, and they have help from our heroes who emerged from the fire pits. Now it’s time to kick some butt.
It isn’t looking so good for the furies right now.
No, the furies are eating it right now. They finally just get so much firepower on the side of the good guys they’re able to overwhelm the furies.
There is this almost quiet moment when the heroes emerge from the fire pits. Thomas Wayne takes his mask off, and they discuss what’s been going on. Is this as quiet as things will get?
I think it is. Burying Clark Kent is as quiet as it is going to get, in terms of having a nice, contemplative moment. They have just come out of the fire pits where they’ve been for a long time, they had huge losses, but they also have a huge win by shutting down the parademons and freeing the Red Avatar. This issue is probably the biggest win the good guys have had in the whole series. They managed to knock out some huge threats. But the problem is Darkseid has arrived. That’s going to be tough to deal with.
It almost feels like a false finale here.
Yeah, we wanted to have a moment where we win, we get our heroes united … then we steel ourselves for the battles to come. We still have Apokolips in the sky, and we don’t know what terrible threat that represents. And the issue ends with the really fun payoff of the pregnant fury, and we get a glimpse of what’s going to be coming from that.
So Kara gets Superman’s shield and it bonds itself to her costume. What does this make her? Is she Power Girl? Superwoman?
That’s interesting. I haven’t put a moniker on it, but it is the passing of the shield. You wonder who should get it. It makes perfect sense that when Clark is gone, Kara should step up and become the new Superman.
Whose idea was it to actually put the shield on her?
That was the team. Marguerite was definitely all about it. We knew the shield was a powerful symbol and wanted to be this solid moment where we’re able to have this physical object we could physically pass the torch. That symbol summarizes everything about the big man.
Power Girl has been a character who has drawn criticism for her costume, and the unnecessary cleavage window. Can you speak to the symbolism of covering that up, and closing the cleavage window? Is that an important contribution to this character?
I think it is important she puts the symbol on. Superman doesn’t have a window so we can see his pectoral muscles in his shirt, and she is taking on the mantle of Superman. So I think it makes sense the window be replaced. It conveys the message she has taken on his responsibilities. Also, I think a lot of people will have a lot of different opinions about this. I look forward to seeing what the fans think.
What do you think that breakdown will be between people who support covering her up versus the fans that say you’re changing a beloved character?
I can completely understand people who are attached to a character, see a change like this and get upset. But she’s evolving as a character over time. That’s what makes this fun and worth writing. Characters change over time, and I think she’s a more interesting one to me having this shield. [laughs] I’m trying and failing to not piss anyone off here. But that’s going to be inevitable!
Hey, people getting pissed off when it comes to talking comics is just part of the job!
Yeah, yeah, I know! I’m reminded of that every day.
Jimmy reveals more about the Generation ship. Is this a game-changer?
Yeah, this is absolutely a game-changer. This is a realignment of goals for the whole series. Like I’ve said before, Jimmy now has a lot more insider information about what’s really happening and what the ultimate outcome of all of this is likely to be. The fact that Jimmy thinks a huge spaceship that can hold a city’s worth of people is important, that speaks to what the kind of outcome that he might see on the horizon for Earth-2. This ship is going to be very important for the future of the series. The realignment is going from winning to surviving. A lot of themes in this series is about surviving at any cost.
Kara reverses Helena’s transformation into a fury, but she dies as a result?
Yeah. You never know what’s going to happen in comics, so I would warn people not to freak out, but that’s what we just saw.
Finally, the pregnant fury Death finally gives birth when this giant hand bursts through her belly. Big fan of Alien?
Of course, and it comes through in that last panel, right? We finally get to see whatever it is that’s inside of her. It is not pretty, and we’ll see a lot more of that baby, which I’m calling Deathspawn because that’s what it is.
This is a Chekhov’s Gun situation.
When you have a pregnant monster, you’re making a promise and you have to pay it off. We knew she was going to give birth. We didn’t always exactly know to what, but if you are following the monthly, you see her get pregnant [by Darkseid].
What’s your favorite moment of this issue?
I love when Jimmy Olsen is telling everyone his audacious plan to go steal the spacecraft. I love his inspirational monologue. It is fun to watch him become so confident, and a leader. He’s telling Mister Miracle and Mister Terrific, and the smartest characters around, what they’ve got to do.