The Trinity War ended with Justice League #23, and it got me thinking about how writers should go from setting up the major event, to the event itself. Now, I always think the event should be set up somewhere in the universe, and one of your top selling books is a fine place to do so, but the ending to Trinity War seems odd to me. Because I try to be conscious of spoilers, I’ll put the rest after the break. But be warned, the ending will be spoiled immediately after the break.
So, yeah, apparently the Crime Syndicate will be the major villains in Forever Evil. I do recall hearing something about this a while back, so I guess it’s not that big a deal for you, the average Internet reader. And I don’t really have an issue with the Crime Syndicate being the force that instigated the Trinity War, and being the key players in Forever Evil. My issue is really a matter of timing and story structure.
For those that don’t know, The Trinity War has been going on in the 3 Justice League books. (The 3 books are not the “Trinity.”) It eventually broke down to Pandora, The Question, and the Phantom Stranger (also not the “Trinity”) each leading a group led by Wonder Woman, Batman, or Superman (not the “Trinity” in this instance). Eventually, all 3 groups end up fighting everyone for Pandora’s Box. It’s “leaking” evil, and affecting everyone around it. Otherwise known as a reason to have a bunch of heroes fighting each other. Long story short, The Outsider takes possession of the box, and reveals that it’s not a box, it’s a doorway. A doorway to the real “Trinity,” Earth-3, home of the Crime Syndicate. The Outsider is that Earth’s Alfred. (Get it? The Butler did it.) But also, The Atom was from Earth-3 as well, and was working with The Outsider by putting a sliver of kryptonite in Superman’s brain, thus making him go crazy and shoot Dr. Light, and get sick. I suppose it’s easy enough to say those panels of The Atom I posted from Part 1 were just her playing the part. Anyways, so now we’re heading into Forever Evil with the Crime Syndicate on…New-Earth I guess it’s still called, and Superman still sick. And oh yeah, Cyborg’s cybernetics kind of got a sentient virus that separated his cybernetics from him, and became a robot called Grid. “Cyborg” isn’t dead though, yet.
But finally here’s my question Wouldn’t it have been better to make the Crime Syndicate reveal at the end of Forever Evil #1? You could have ended The Trinity War with The Atom showing her true allegiance, The Outsider acquiring Pandora’s Box, and then they leave with Grid. Those 3 have won the war. Story over. Forever Evil #1 starts with the Leagues trying to track down The Outsider, and when they do finally get to him, that is when the Crime Syndicate shows up and we get the explanation of who he really is. I think this would allow people that didn’t read Trinity War to be able to jump into Forever Evil without having a lot of questions. Also, doing it this way means that you won’t need to explain things again in Forever Evil, thus boring the people that did read Trinity War.
The opening premise for Forever Evil could be fairly simple. Bad guy has a box of pure evil, so good guys are trying to stop him. Often times, simple is better. The less a person needs to know before starting an event, the better. Otherwise, why even have the event. Just keep doing crossovers, because that’s who you’re targeting. People that have been reading everything already. If you want to draw in new readers, start from the simplest of ideas, and expand from there.