[Renegade Robins: Event] Countdown to Final Crisis (July-Sept.)

Countdown 40 cover

Welcome to a special Multi-Month Event from the Renegade Robins Club! Some stories are too big for our regular weekly readings, and we want to give you the chance to experience them in full. Case in point: the weekly series Countdown to Infinite Crisis, which consists of 51 issues that literally count down to issue #1! We will read 5 issues per week as we journey through this event!

Among the various plot threads in this epic story, we find the Red Hood (Jason Todd) joining with Donna Troy and the Monitor to form the Challengers From Beyond! Over the next three months, we will follow them in their journey to find Ray Palmer, the Atom!

Join the club today! (If you’re not a member, feel free to contribute anyway!)

–READINGS BY WEEK–

Week 1: 2020-07-05T05:00:00Z → 2020-07-11T05:00:00Z

Issues

Countdown #51
Countdown #50
Countdown #49
Countdown #48
Teen Titans #47

Week 2: 2020-07-12T05:00:00Z → 2020-07-18T05:00:00Z

Issues

Countdown #47
Countdown #46
Countdown #45
Countdown #44
Countdown #43

Week 3: 2020-07-19T05:00:00Z → 2020-07-25T05:00:00Z

Issues

All-New Atom #13
Countdown #42
Countdown #41
Countdown #40
Countdown #39

Week 4: 2020-07-26T05:00:00Z → 2020-08-01T05:00:00Z

Issues

All-New Atom #14
Countdown #38
Countdown #37
Countdown #36
Countdown #35

Week 5: 2020-08-02T05:00:00Z → 2020-08-08T05:00:00Z

Issues

Countdown #34
Countdown #33
All-New Atom #15
Countdown #32
Countdown #31

Week 6: 2020-08-09T05:00:00Z → 2020-08-15T05:00:00Z

Issues

Countdown #30
Lord Havok #1
Countdown #29
Countdown #28
Countdown #27

Week 7: 2020-08-16T05:00:00Z → 2020-08-22T05:00:00Z

Issues

Lord Havok #2
Countdown #26
Countdown #25
Countdown #24
Countdown #23

Week 8: 2020-08-23T05:00:00Z → 2020-08-29T05:00:00Z

Issues

The Search for Ray Palmer: Gotham by Gaslight
Countdown #22
Countdown #21
Countdown #20
Countdown #19

Week 9: 2020-08-30T05:00:00Z → 2020-09-05T05:00:00Z

Issues

Countdown #18
Countdown #17
Countdown #16
Countdown #15
Countdown #14

Week 10: 2020-09-06T05:00:00Z → 2020-09-12T05:00:00Z

Issues

Countdown #13
Countdown #12
Countdown #11
Countdown #10
Countdown #9

Week 11: 2020-09-13T05:00:00Z → 2020-09-19T05:00:00Z

Issues

Countdown #8
Countdown #7
Countdown #6
Countdown #5
Countdown #4

Week 12: 2020-09-20T05:00:00Z → 2020-09-26T05:00:00Z

Issues

Countdown #3
Countdown #2
Countdown #1

Countdown 15 cover

Poll Question: Have you read Countdown before now?

  • Yes, and I loved it!
  • Yes, and I hated it!
  • Yeah, and it was okay.
  • Well, I started it, but…
  • Not yet!

0 voters

@RenegadeRobinsClub members: Regular sessions for Jason Todd and Damian Wayne will continue throughout these months, so enjoy these issues as a bonus to the regular schedule!

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I don’t know if this is the place I should post this but for those interested I know action comics 852-854 ties in with countdown, after issue #42.

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Ah, Countdown. I had… high hopes for this comic. It started out a bit wobbly, but with some good moments, multiple subplots that intrigued me, as just a general solid B comic. And then…

Well, I suppose according to traditional comic numbering, issues in a series often get better as numbers get higher, so one supposes Countdown was just following tradition.

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I have some questions after reading issue 47.

First is I see Kyle Rayner is considered an anomaly who doesn’t belong in universe. Why is this? I always thought he was just a normal human on his earth.

Second is pied piper and trickster have a convo, saying something about having your cake and eat it too. Then pied piper said it was a gay comment but his secret is safe. So was he trying to say he was gay or he was gay as in happy? Just curious.

Well, he was supposed to be from another Earth, according to Infinite Crisis #5:

Infinite Crisis 5 Rayner

Pied Piper had come out by this point.

Same here – I mean, a weekly comic that was ran by Paul freaking Dini? “How could it possibly go wrong?” I thought.

Oh boy did we find out.

I suppose that’s not entirely fair – I remember reading a few issues early on, never finished it and know the ending of it more from…reputation, I suppose you can say. Or infamy.

I’m going to give it a try, but I’m sure after a certain point I’m just going to MST3K the heck out of it.

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I reread Countdown recently and every issue is just slightly worse than the previous one. There’s a brief uptick of quality for the Jason plotline and only the Jason plotline when he meets Earth 51 Bruce, something that I attribute to it clearly having been plotted out from the start, but right after it’s back to totally sucking. The Piper and Trickster plotline spends a while as enjoyable comedic relief, then mood whiplashes into one of the worst parts of the comic. Just altogether it was somewhere between “Dan Didio micromanaging everything to death,” “too many cooks spoil the broth” and, of course, “perhaps if Grant Morrison had actually shared the ■■■■■■■ plot details from Final Crisis in time for the writers writing the lead-in series to actually plot accordingly, the end result would have worked better.”

So I’m wondering where this takes place in the DC timeline? I thought the whole amazons attack happened during the 52 storyline but we see it happen in countdown. Does it happen in both stories or just countdown?

Also I thought Donna Troy was Wonder Woman, at least temporarily. Was this before or after she became Wonder Woman?

I thought this happened before but I’m not sure.

Amazons Attack was part of the lead-up to Final Crisis.

I remember a scene in the beginning of the 52 storyline where it showed the old Themyscira embassy in America and it was being replaced with the Kahndaq embassy. I assumed this was because the amazons were kicked out of America after amazons attack.

From what I remember, technically Amazons Attack was originally going to be a mini-series that would have lead up to Infinite Crisis, but was scrapped during the planning process. They later decided to make it into it’s own event.

I think the reason why the Themyscira Embassy was out of commission in 52 was because of fallout from Wonder Woman killing Maxwell Lord.

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Maybe you are right.

I’m noticing this series has a lot of tie ins and connects to a lot of other series going on at that time.

For example amazons attack ties in in the first couple of issues and flash fastest man alive last issue ties in directly with issue #43. The problem is they aren’t official tie ins to the the story like some issues so you have to find this out on your own.

I was wondering if it would be okay for us to post all the issues that connect or official tie ins to each issue.

You can’t really understand issue 43 without knowing what happens in the last issue of Flash the fastest man alive.

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That’s fine, but you might want to post them during the appropriate week so that it doesn’t get too confusing.

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Yeah, there’s a lot of tie in issues – I know that at least an issue or two of Detective Comics is as well, though that was written by Dini, so that makes some sense.

After reading about Mirror Master’s antics in Countdown this month, you might want to pop into the Psychology of Villains Club thread and chime in:

I was wondering if you could post tie in issues to each week in the top post?

UPDATE POST FOR WEEK 1 (JULY 5-11)

This first week, we’re looking at issues 51-48 of Countdown (not yet “to Final Crisis”!) and an important tie-in issue from Teen Titans. Here is a guide to these issues:

  • Harlequin (aka Duela Dent, aka the Joker’s Daughter) first appeared in an arc from Batman Family #6, 8, and 9. She became affiliated with the Teen Titans near the end of their original book’s run in issue #46, and she has since served as a reserve member. Most recently, she was part of Titans East, starting in Teen Titans (2003 series) #43.

  • Recent developments with the Marvel family were occurring in The Trials of Shazam, the seventh issue of which came out the same month as Countdown 51-48.

  • The Pied Piper and The Trickster rejoin the Rogues in these issues after years of being on the side of good. The Piper’s reform had begun in the early days of Wally West’s tenure as the Scarlet Speedster in The Flash (1987 series) #31. The Trickster’s move to the heroes’ side was in response to the events of Underworld Unleashed.

  • To prepare for an upcoming plot development, you may want to check out The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive #9-10. These issues are the beginning of an arc entitled Full Throttle, which is a follow-up to Lightning in a Bottle (the story that established Bart Allen as the new Flash).

Excellent update for this week’s reading. I think a lot of others already hit the nail on the head with Countdown. Coming out of 52 - which I freaking loved - I thought the idea of another weekly comic would be great. But where 52 felt self contained, this felt it tried so hard to be a central DC story that consistently tied into what was going on in monthly comics - the random pages of Batman and Karate Kid fighting - with no lead up or “see the rest of the story in Justice League”.

Right off the bat… then and now, I found myself wondering how Duela Dent knows who the Red Hood is? How does Jimmy Olsen? They both call him by his name. Why do they know who he is, and doesn’t that mean they if they did any sort of looking into Jason Todd at all it’d raise all sorts of questions about Bruce Wayne?

They let a photographer get into to Arkham Asylum to interview their most famous patient, alone? And he doesn’t think anything is odd about a guard getting his head eaten off right behind him - just carries on his phone conversation despite the surely loud screams.

It’s so easy to riff on this comic. It clearly had no idea what Final Crisis was going to look like. No idea where characters needed to be at the start of that story in order to make sense. BUT, all that said, I liked the tie in series so much better than Countdown itself. If they are read as their own titles, without worrying about how they fit into the larger DC continuity, they are pretty good reads.

Countdown itself though can’t be taken as its own series as it clearly is meant to lead into something, so it just meanders and struggled.

However I’ll be back each week as this series is such a quick read and fun to riff on.

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I can understand Duela knowing it simply because both Jason and she are Titans alums. It’s a bit stranger that Jimmy knows. Maybe he has been identified as a wanted criminal by this point?

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That would be really weird, though, since it would raise immediate questions about Bruce Wayne’s identity. I think maybe the writers just… forgot that Jimmy didn’t know secret IDs like Lois does?

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