The Wasted Potential of DC Comics Earth One

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Throughout the history of DC Comics, there has been no shortage of reboots, relaunches and alternate continuities. Now, we’ve already touched on a number of these so far, namely The New 52 and the failed ‘All Star’ series of comics, but there’s another standalone universe that I want to touch on in this video: DC’s Earth-One. For those of you who might be unaware, DC Comics has often used a multiverse in their storytelling, with a varied number of parallel realities existing, often labelled as Earth-1, Earth-2 and so on. And, traditionally, Earth-1 was often designated as the ‘Prime’ reality, as in the place where our versions of the DC heroes exist. However, by the late 2000’s, following the Infinite Crisis mini-series, the company had altered their multiverse, with the prime reality now being designated as Earth-0. As a result, in late 2009, DC formally announced that they would be creating a new line of publishing, entitled Earth-One. This new universe, they stated, would be a complete clean slate, allowing writers and artists to tell brand new and unique stories with established DC heroes, free to reinvent and reinterpret them in bold new ways. In a sense, the company sought to capture the success that Marvel had found with their Ultimate universe (which, at this point, had been going strong for close to a decade). But, could they? Today, in late 2019, the Earth-One universe does still exist today, though I think it’s fair to say that the series, despite some strong moments, never quite lived up to its potential or expectations. But the question is why? What happened to Earth-One? In this video, we’re going to explore the origins and the ideas behind DC’s Earth-One series, examine the early successes and failures of the books, and attempt to uncover the reasons as to why it seemed to fall by the wayside, forgotten about by both its publisher and its fans, and ultimately never got the levels of success and recognition that it arguably deserves.

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