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Firestorm on Infinite Earths — Countdown Arena

CROSSOVER! Everybody loves a crossover! Today FIRESTORM FAN joins the illustrious Super-Blog Team-Up! Several different blogs have combined forces today under the banner of Parallel Worlds and Alternate Realities! Each blog in this crossover will focus on alternate versions of their favorite characters and niches.

Super-Blog Team Up

Today here at FIRESTORM FAN we’re going to feature… well… Firestorm. Specifically the Firestorm characters from parallel worlds that appeared in Countdown: Arena!

Countdown: Arena was a four issue mini-series, published weekly from December 5 thru December 26, 2007. It was written by Keith Champagne, penciled by Scott McDaniel, inked by Andy Owens, and colored by Guy Major. Spinning off of Countdown, the series features Monarch (Nathaniel Adam) as he organizes battles among various characters from the 52 Earths of the Multiverse. Monarch’s secret agenda was to allow the character of Breach to escape the Arena trap, knowing he would recruit additional multiverse incarnations of Captain Atom to battle Monarch. Once this “Captain Atom Brigade” confronted Monarch, he absorbed their powers making himself even more powerful. Finally, he gathered those Arena victors he deemed worthy in preparation for a battle against the Monitors.

I bought this series as it was coming out, however, I had little enthusiasm for the series until actually reading it. I had grown weary of the Countdown saga and expected this to be just another fight-fight-fight book. While there was certainly a lot of fighting, I was pleasantly surprised to find there was a lot to like about this series! First off, Scott McDaniel pencils? Yes, please!! I fell in love with McDaniel’s work on Daredevil several years before, so it was a treat to see him here. Second, there was a decent story and some intrigue in this series. Third, we got to meet Firestorm from Earth 12 and Quantum-Storm from Earth 37!

Quantum-Storm from Earth 37

As mentioned, Monarch (a.k.a. Nathaniel Adam, a.k.a. Captain Atom) was the “big bad” of this mini-series. He gathered numerous characters from around the multiverse and locked them in an Arena to do battle with one another. Monarch carefully selected trios of characters to battle each other (i.e. Batman from Gotham By Gaslight, The Bat from JSA Liberty Files, and vampire Batman from Red Rain). For Captain Atom (alternate versions of Monarch himself), he selected Breach (from the primary DC Earth), Captain Atom of the Atomic Knights (Earth 38), and Quantum-Storm (Earth 37). While these were Captain Atom analogs, Quantum-Storm is actually a hybrid of the Captain Atom concept and the Firestorm concept!

Quantum-Storm was the fusion of Ronnie Raymond and Nathaniel Adam. Adam operated as the on-board adviser, much like Professor Stein did in the original Firestorm. The costume was nearly identical to the original Firestorm outfit, except yellow had been replaced with the same silvery-blue worn by the post-Crisis Captain Atom. We didn’t learn much about Quantum-Storm, but he appeared in all four issues and died heroically trying to defeat Monarch.

Quantum-Storm from Countdown: Arena -- Firestorm from Earth 37

Firestorm from Earth 12

Over on Earth 12, we catch a brief glimpse of this world’s Firestorm. He’s hanging out with a young Green Lantern moments before GL is abducted for the Arena event. On this Earth, Green Lantern is the grandson of Green Lantern Hal Jordan. That implies these are the next generation of heroes. Looking at Firestorm’s costume design and flaming wings, perhaps he is the child (or grandchild) of Jason Rusch and Lorraine Reilly. That’s pure speculation, but I can’t help wondering. Below you’ll find his only appearance. Click to enlarge.

Firestorm from Earth 12 -- Countdown: Arena

Not a lot of Firestorm content, but seeing any parallel version of our favorite Nuclear Man is awesome! If you haven’t read it, pick up Countdown: Arena. It’s well worth your time and money!

Super-Blog Team-Up Links

As mentioned, several different blogs have teamed-up today to cover Parallel Worlds and Alternate Realities! While I’m featuring Firestorm here on my site, you should visit these other comic blogs to see how they spotlight their own favorite characters and niches today. Visit them now, visit them later, and visit them often!

Support Firestorm (and other members of the Super-Blog Team-Up)! Fan the flame!

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9 Comments

  1. FKAjason says:

    Awesome as always. I’m a sucker for alternate realities.

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  3. […] Firestorm Fan on Infinite Earths: Countdown Arena […]

  4. Ben Herman says:

    Captain Atom finally did transform into Monarch, huh? And only 16 years after he was supposed to be revealed as the Big Bad during Armageddon 2001, before that was rewritten at the last minute because the secret got leaked. That was a good idea ruined by a poor execution.

    Much like yourself, I avoided nearly everything related to the whole Countdown mega-crossover. It really seemed like a mess. But it looks like the artwork on this Arena miniseries was really good. if I can find a copy of the trade paperback for a reasonable price maybe I will pick it up.

  5. […] Firestorm Fan on Infinite Earths: Countdown Arena […]

  6. Excellent job on this post. My favorite Firestorm was the mid 80s version. Hasnt been one better since..in my humble opinion.

    Welcome to the team!!

    Hero Out!

  7. Welcome to Super-Blog Team-Up … long may the (Firestorm) flame burn!

  8. Dean Compton says:

    That Countdown thing killed me too. It just sprawled in every direction, but it somehow never got anywhere. This looks neat, though, as I am a Firestorm and Captain Atom mark, so an amalgam of the two is fascinating to me!

    I have also always wanted to see an all-out fight between Captain Atom, Firestorm, and Solar. Maybe one day! Good job, y’all!

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