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Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths Reading Order Guide

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Disclaimer: A previous version of this reading order referred to this event as “Dark Crisis”. However, on 21st July, DC Comics revealed at San Diego Comic Con 2022 that the name has changed to “Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths”. The tie-ins still seem to be referred to as “Dark Crisis” still. These will be kept as such unless DC refers to them by the new name.

It’s time for another DC Comics crisis, the massive comic book events that threatens the very multiverse itself.

The latest is Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths. This time around, a destructive force known as The Great Darkness and an army of the most dangerous villains are on a collision course with the main DC Universe. Usually, it would be up to the Justice League to save the day. However, they tried to stop it and are now believed dead. It will be up to the countless other heroes of the DC Universe to save the day!

DC’s crisis events are known for tearing the multiverse down and rebuilding it in new ways for storytelling reasons or realign continuity. Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths appears to be different. It looks to use the multiverse-spanning threat to celebrate the various generations of legacy heroes that the publisher has built a foundation on. So while readers might not see some drastic change to the fabric of the multiverse by its conclusion, it’s possible Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths change the heroic landscape.

Jumping into a comic book event like this can feel daunting. The Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths reading order has been created to make reading as easy as possible. It has the recommended reading order plus a slew of other handy things such as release dates, background reading, and loads more. Soon you’ll be able to dive into Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths with ease.

Table of Contents

Do you have to read everything?

No. You don’t have to read everything in order to enjoy Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths.

The great thing about comic book events is that you can tailor your reading experience based on your interest, time, and budget. You’ll get the full story by reading the main series but you can expand upon it through the side-stories and different character perspectives that the tie-ins offer.

DC Comics would love if you read all of the Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths tie-ins but totally understand that might not be feasible. If you want to check out any of the tie-ins, you can decide which ones you read based on the story, characters involved, and the creators who made the comic.

Crisis On Infinite Earths #1 cover by George Perez.
Crisis On Infinite Earths #1 cover by George Perez.

Background reading

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths and it’s build-up reference a lot of classic DC Comics stories. These are some of the notable stories worth checking out for those who want to go the extra mile with their reading.

Crisis on Infinite Earths
Written by Marv Wolfman. Art by George Perez.

The granddaddy of DC Comic book events. This 1984-85 maxiseries sets the template for the multiverse spanning events that DC likes to do from time-to-time. A lot of the build-up has referenced and retconned ideas from this story, including one of the major villains.

Update: DC Comics has announced that Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths is a sequel to Crisis on Infinite Earths.

I wrote extensively on Crisis on Infinite Earths event when the Arrowverse did their own version of a few years if you want to know more about it.

Swamp Thing (1982 series) #49-50
Written by Alan Moore. Art by Stan Woch.

The Great Darkness, a destructive force and the embodiment of darkness in the multiverse and a major threat in Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths. It first appeared in Swamp Thing (1982 series) #49-50, the final two issues of the classic “American Gothic” storyline that ran in Swamp Thing (1982 series) #37-50.

The Great Darkness is one of those niche ideas that was used in the 80s and forgotten about until it surfaced again in Justice League Incarnate. You could easily read the DC Wikia page to get a general gist of it.

Multiversity #2
Written by Grant Morrison. Art by Ivan Reis.

For those who want to see the first appearance of Justice League Incarnate.

Dark Nights: Death Metal
Written by Scott Snyder. Art by Greg Capullo.

For those who want to understand how the concept of the DC Omniverse came into being. Check out the Dark Nights: Death Metal reading order to find out more about this event.

Trial of the Amazons
Written and art by various.

This is Wonder Woman event from earlier in 2021 which brought in a lot of the extended Amazon cast. Read this if you want to know more about Yara Flor’s position in the DC Universe. This reading order will make sure you don’t miss an issue.

I Am Batman #1 onwards
Written by John Ridley. Art by Olivier Coipel, Christian Duce, and Ken Lashley.

Read this series if you want to know more about Jace Fox.

Teen Titans Academy #1-15
Written by Tim Sheridan. Art by Rafa Sandoval, Tom Derenick, Mike Norton, and others.

Read this series if you want to know more about what the Titans and Teen Titans have been up to.

Superman: Son of Kal-El #1 onwards
Written by Tom Taylor. Art by John Timms.

For those who want to know more about the current situation with Jon Kent as Superman.

Infinite Frontier #0 cover by Dan Jurgens and Mikel Janín.
Infinite Frontier #0 cover by Dan Jurgens and Mikel Janín.

Lead up to Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths

These are the comics and stories that build-up and directly lead into Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths.

Infinite Frontier #0-6
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Xermanico, Jesús Merino, and Paul Pelletier.

This miniseries sets the events that will lead up to Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths in motion.

Infinite Frontier Secret Files
Written and art by various.

Infinite Frontier Secret Files is a digital-first tie-in stories to Infinite Frontier, which explore more characters around the multiverse. It’s also available as a one-shot in print.

It’s an optional read. For those who want to, it’s best to read them between Infinite Frontier #3-4.

Justice League Incarnate #1-5
Written by Joshua Williamson and Dennis Culver. Art by Brandon Peterson, Andrei Bressan, and Tom Derenick.

Justice League Incarnate is the follow-up to Infinite Frontier and continues to set up Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths. The trade paperback collection will be released on 25th October, 2022.

Justice League vs. Legion of Super-Heroes #1-6
Written by Brian Michael Bendis. Art by Scott Godlewski.

Plenty of hints to Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths in this one.

Shadow War Crossover
Written and art by various.

Shadow War is a Joshua Williamson crossover with Batman, Robin, and Deathstroke Inc that the writer has said will have elements that will help build up Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths. Find out how to read it in this handy reading order.

Dark Crisis #1 cover by Daniel Sampere #1.
Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #1 cover by Daniel Sampere #1.

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths reading order

Take a look at the recommended reading order for Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths below.

Justice League (2016 series) #75 (Prelude)
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Rafa Sandoval.
Available 26th April

Note: While Justice League #75 as a prelude, it could be argued that it’s one of the more essential comics. The events of this issue will be the launching pad for Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths.

Dark Crisis Free Comic Book Day Special Edition 2022 #1 (Prelude)
Written by Joshua Williamson and others. Art by Jim Cheung, Daniel Sampere, and others.
Available 7th May

Note: This prelude is a free comic that will be made available from comic book shops on Free Comic Book Day (7th May, 2022). You can read it for free if you couldn’t make it to a Free Comic Book Day event.

Justice League: Road To Dark Crisis #1 (Prelude)
Written by Joshua Williamson, Jeremey Adams, Brandon Thomas, Chuck Brown, Stephanie Pillips, and Phillip Kennedy Johnson. Art by Clayton Henry, Fico Ossio, Emanuela Lupacchino, Leila Del Duca, and others.
Available 31st May

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #1 (of 7)
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Daniel Sampere.
Available 7th June

Note: There are two versions of this comic with different names. The original version was called “Dark Crisis” but has been renamed after its release to “Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths”. A reprint with the new name will be available 30th August.

Dark Crisis: Young Justice #1 (of 6) (Tie-in)
Written by Meghan Fitzmartin. Art by Laura Braga.
Available 21st June

The Flash #783 (Tie-in)
Written by Jeremy Adams. Art by Amancay Nahuelpan.
Available 21st June

Note: The flash tie-ins will explore the Barry Allen story-thread.

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #2 (of 7)
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Daniel Sampere.
Available 5th July

Note: There are two versions of this comic with different names. The original version was called “Dark Crisis” but has been renamed after its release to “Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths”. A reprint with the new name will be available 30th August.

Dark Crisis: Worlds Without A Justice League – Superman #1 (Tie-in)
Written by Tom King, Brandon Thomas and Chuck Brown. Art by Chris Burnham and Fico Ossio.
Available 12th July

Note: This will also include an Aquaman back-up story.

Dark Crisis: Young Justice #2 (of 6) (Tie-in)
Written by Meghan Fitzmartin. Art by Laura Braga.
Available 19th July

The Flash #784 (Tie-in)
Written by Jeremy Adams. Art by Amancay Nahuelpan.
Available 19th July

Aquamen #6 (Tie-in)
Written by Chuck Brown and Brandon Thomas. Art by Sam Basri.
Available 26th July

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #3 (of 7)
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Daniel Sampere.
Available 2nd August

Note: There are two versions of this comic with different names. The original version was called “Dark Crisis” but has been renamed after its release to “Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths”. A reprint with the new name will be available 30th August.

Dark Crisis: Worlds Without A Justice League – Green Lantern #1 (Tie-in)
Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Nadia Shammas. Art by Fernando Blanco and Jack Herbert.
Available 9th August

Note: This will also includes a Hawkgirl back-up story.

Dark Crisis: Young Justice #3 (of 6) (Tie-in)
Written by Meghan Fitzmartin. Art by Laura Braga.
Available 16th August

The Flash #785 (Tie-in)
Written by Jeremy Adams. Art by Amancay Nahuelpan.
Available 16th August

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #4 (of 7)
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Daniel Sampere.
Available 6th September

Note: Dark Crisis #4 will spin out of events in The Flash tie-ins up to this point.

Dark Crisis: Worlds Without A Justice League – Wonder Woman #1 (Tie-in)
Written by Tini Howard and Dan Watters. Art by Leila Del Duca and Bandon Peterson.
Available 13th September

Note: This will also includes a Martian Manhunter back-up story.

Dark Crisis: Young Justice #4 (of 6) (Tie-in)
Written by Meghan Fitzmartin. Art by Laura Braga.
Available 20th September

The Flash #786 (Tie-in)
Written by Jeremy Adams. Art by Amancay Nahuelpan.
Available 20th September

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #5 (of 7)
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Daniel Sampere.
Available 4th October

Dark Crisis: The Deadly Green #1 (tie-in)
Written by Joshua Williamson, Dan Watters, Rm V, and Alex Paknadel. Art by Daniel Bayliss.
Available 4th October

Dark Crisis: Worlds Without A Justice League – Green Arrow #1 (Tie-in)
Written by Stephanie Phillips and Dennis Culver. Art by Clayton Henry and Nik Virella.
Available 11th October

Note: This will also include a Black Canary back-up story.

Dark Crisis: Young Justice #5 (of 6) (Tie-in)
Written by Meghan Fitzmartin. Art by Laura Braga.
Available 18th October

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #6 (of 7)
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Daniel Sampere.
Available 8th November

I Am Batman #15 (Tie-in)
Written by John Ridley. Art by Karl Mostert.
Available 8th November

Dark Crisis: Worlds Without A Justice League – Batman #1 (Tie-in)
Written by Si Spurrier and Meghan Fitzmartin. Art by Ryan Sook, Dan Jergens, nd Norm Rapmund.
Available 15th November

Note: This will also include a Zatanna back-up story.

Dark Crisis: Young Justice #6 (of 6) (Tie-in)
Written by Meghan Fitzmartin. Art by Laura Braga.
Available 15th November

Dark Crisis: The Dark Army #1 (tie-in)
Written by Dennis Culver and Delilah S. Dawson. Art by Freddie Williams II.
Available 22nd November

Superman: Kal-El Returns Special #1 (partial tie-in)
Written by Mark Waid, Sina Grace, Alex Segura, and Marv Wolfman. Art by Max Raynor, Den Haspiel, Jack Herbert, and Reilly Brown.
Available 29th November

Note: Superman: Kal-El Returns Special #1 is a one-shot that expands the Kal-El Returns crossover going on in Action Comics and Superman: Son of Kal-El. The reason this is included in the Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths reading order is because one of the stories reveals moments leading up to Superman’s abduction by Pariah. Check it out if you’re invested in the Superman crossover and Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths. Otherwise, it’s up to you if you want to read it.

Dark Crisis: Big Bang (Tie-in)
Written by Mark Waid. Art by Dan Jurgens and others.
Available 13th December

Note: Based on the announcement, it appears that Dark Crisis: Big Bang can be read any time after Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #4. However, I have put it here for now as it is being released much later. I will reassess its position once it has been released.

Dark Crisis: War Zone #1 (Tie-in)
Written by Matthew Rosenberg, Delilah S. Dawson, Jeremy Adams, Frank Tieri, and Stephanie Williams. Art by George Kambadais, Daniel Bayliss, Fernando Pasarin, Matt Ryan, and Serg Acuna.
Available 6th December

Note: Dark Crisis: War Zone #1 leads directly into Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #7.

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #7 (of 7)
Written by Joshua Williamson. Art by Daniel Sampere.
Available 20th December

Buy Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths comics on:

After Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths

What comics after Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths? While we don’t have the details yet, what we do know is that there will be a new publishing era known as Dawn of the DCU which will begin in 2023. Dc haven’t reveled any specifics yet. I’ll keep you updated when they do.

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