The DC Universe has been through…a lot. That has been true for quite a while, but especially lately. 2020’s event series Dark Nights: Death Metal shattered reality before putting it back together, then 2021 started with two months of DC Future State, providing glimpses of multiple potential future timelines.
In March 2021, the Infinite Frontier #0 one-shot gave readers a snapshot of the current DC landscape along with some tantalizing teases of what’s to come, including the revelation that the Multiverse is in fact changing and expanding without limit (an infinite frontier, if you will). At the end of that issue, Barry Allen rescinded his position as the Flash to Wally West in order to explore what this all means, alongside a team of heroes from across the Multiverse called Justice Incarnate.
The next step in the evolution of DC’s Multiverse begins in this week’s Infinite Frontier #1, written by Joshua Williamson and illustrated by Xermanico and Romulo Fajardo Jr. As Williamson explains in this interview, the issue—the first part of a six-part series, supported by the DC Digital First tie-in Infinite Frontier: Secret Files, in print on June 29—sets up a massive mystery, exploring the fallout of DC’s near-apocalyptic events in recent years, and setting up something even bigger that’s coming in the future. And oh yeah, don’t forget about the villain who made a very ominous return at the end of Infinite Frontier #0 and looms large throughout the subsequent miniseries: Darkseid.
Both Dark Nights: Death Metal #7 and Infinite Frontier #0 established that the Multiverse is changing and growing. How much does this story investigate what that means? Will we see the “Earth Omega” Barry identified in the one-shot?
We visit Earth Omega quite a bit in this series. Barry goes there and finds the crime scene from the end of Infinite Frontier #0. It’s a hard moment that leads to some of the mystery we’re beginning to show in the DC Universe. What Earth Omega actually is plays out here and will have a cool impact for next year.
The idea that the Multiverse is growing and undergoing a major change is an important piece of this story as we build to bigger plans. But the story here is less about what it means…and more how the characters in the Multiverse react to that information. We deal a lot with the fallout from Rebirth, Dark Nights: Metal, Death Metal and Doomsday Clock. Really all the reality-altering shenanigans these last few years.
The world ended a few times in the DCU and there has to be some kind of fallout from that. People want to know what really happened.
Infinite Frontier feels like a “summer event” in many ways—it’s debuting in June after all—but also feels more character-based than that term traditionally implies. How do you describe the scale and scope of this story?
It’s a mystery that carries across the Multiverse. It’s not a big summer blockbuster story. After the big Earth-ending level events that DC has done the last few years, we wanted something a bit more character-based. Show a more grounded point of view on these crazy events. Show what the “normal” people in the DCU are dealing with. Slow down a bit, take a breath, and show a mystery in the DCU in a way we haven’t seen in a bit. Start small but get bigger and bigger. I think it will surprise people.
The scale is huge and covers a lot of ground. We structured it like Game of Thrones with separate story threads that combine as they investigate the mystery. The closest past DC title I can compare it to is the weekly 52 series that followed Infinite Crisis.
But again, this story gets the table ready and build for an even bigger event we’re planning.
Speakers of characters, Alan Scott, Jade and Obsidian, who readers haven’t seen much of in recent years, all play a role here, following resurfacing in the Infinite Frontier one-shot. What are you enjoying about exploring these characters who have been off the board for so long? Is it fair to call Alan Scott the main character of the story?
There is no one main character to this story, to be honest. But the thing I enjoy most is just seeing the DCU from different points of view than we’re used to. We’ve seen these kinds of stories from the POV of Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, the Justice League, etc. Having this cast let me explore the DCU from a different angle.
Alan is a great hero who inspired so many heroes. He and his family have gone through a lot and recently he’s started a new chapter of his life. This made him and his family perfect for this story.
How did the rest of the main cast come together? President Superman is great to see, and of course you’ve got a long history with Barry Allen. And is that Cameron Chase on the cover to #1?
That is Cameron Chase! I was a big fan of her original series and always wanted to write her. She acts as the POV of the person on the street who questions what the hell is going on. There is a scene in issue #2 where she interrogates Batman and Superman. She literally says, “In the report it said a Batman from another reality tried to take over Gotham. But it was a different Batman from another world who took over the world? When does the evil version of Superman show up?”
The cast came together organically. We looked at the story we wanted to tell about the Multiverse and the different story threads that were planned for the #0 issue and went from there. And also, characters that I personally really like and wanted to write. I wanted to write Roy Harper, Bones and President Superman and the rest of Justice Incarnate. And there are some surprise characters that we haven’t revealed yet in the book.
You’ve got history collaborating with Xermanico on a DC story with an unexpected cast of characters. How does the work he’s doing here compare to last year’s “Doom Metal” story in Justice League?
He leveled up, for sure. Xermanico is a dream to work with. One of my favorites. He’s so incredibly thoughtful. He knows comics. He knows the characters, and he knows how to elevate the story. To give it some bite but also to make it feel epic. His storytelling is perfect. I presented him with how this story was going to feel grounded at times. More human. But it still needed the Multiversal fun and he went for it. He’s a great partner on this series, and someone I hope to work with for a long time.
And oh yeah, Darkseid. He returned in extremely ominous fashion at the end of the Infinite Frontier #0 one-shot and he’s looming on the cover to issue #1. What can you share about his role?
In these issues, Darkseid is more in the background, manipulating events to get what he wants. But he’s still the big bad for the DCU in the big story we’re telling. He’s been leveled up into a merged version of all his past selves. He remembers all his past lives. He knows that reality was rewritten, with himself included. Even before the original Crisis on Infinite Earths.
Back then, Darkseid worked to stop the Anti-Monitor because it was messing with his own plans. He tried to stay out of the changes that came from the Multiverse being destroyed and merged. He hates not being in control and the birth of the New 52 after Flashpoint was outside his control. Darkseid will never let that happen again. He has a new plan and we’re showing the start of that plan in these Infinite Frontier issues. The start of a new army he’s building that will greatly impact the future of the DC Multiverse.