The Gathering (2012 – 2013) Reading Order

As part of the second wave of DC ComicsNew 52 relaunch of the entire DC Universe, two new series – Earth 2 and Worlds’ Finest – would hark back to the pre-Crisis version of the Justice Society of America characters. Utilising the concept of Earth 2 but with a modern spin, these stories featured an alternate DC Universe in which Darkseid and his forces successfully invaded planet Earth – a world with far fewer heroes. While two of the characters – Supergirl & Robin – would make the jump to Prime Earth (the mainstream reality, as seen in Worlds’ Finest), new heroes would rise in this post-Apokolips world…

Minor Crossover: The Earth 2 issues can be read without the related Mister Terrific stories, but some elements from those issues do come into play, later.

Must Reads: Story arcs marked with a ✔are must-read stories from this time period, along with any key related stories and often-forgotten tales that are worth a read.

Anthology Issues: When an issue contains multiple stories, the relevant story is denoted with square brackets. For example, [2/5] refers to the second story of the five stories in that issue, so you don’t need to read the other four. 

Previous events that directly impact this story:

  • CROSS WORLDS (2013) – Superman and Batman of Earth 2 meet their Prime Earth counterparts

Want to keep it simple? Here’s the chronological reading order without story descriptions, or spoilers:

  •      DC Universe Presents #0 [2/5]
  •      Mister Terrific #7
  • Earth 2 #1
  •      Mister Terrific #8
  • Earth 2 #2-4
  • Earth 2 #0
  • Earth 2 #56

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Must ReadsTitle, Issue Number & Synopsis
DC Universe Presents #0 [2/5]
Years ago (looking back as part of ZERO MONTH), on Prime Earth, Mister Terrific’s experiments with his gateway to the Ninth Dimension suddenly opened up other possibilities. He jumped through the portal and saw visions from his past and future, including his own death at the hands of a handsome scarred man. Terrific returns to his reality, unaware he’s being manipulated by the man who’s destined to kill him… Terry Sloan, aka Mister 08, disguised as the son Michael Holt never had…
Mister Terrific #7
An abandoned Quraci freighter leaking radiation drops out of thin air onto the port of Los Angeles. Mister Terrific finds a dirty bomb on board, along with a large number of armed Russian terrorists. He defeats the terrorists and defuses the bomb. Donald Leeson’s plan to take over Holt Industries goes awry when he beaches their power core, falls ill, transforms into a warped cyborg and smashes his way into Aleeka Okafur’s home. Karen Farr breaks into Holt Industries at superhuman speed and steals their secrets of quantum tunnelling.
Earth 2 #1
On Earth 2, Media mogul Alan Scott releases a documentary that marks five years since Superman, Wonder Woman & Batman sacrificed themselves to end Darkseid’s control of Earth. Superman was destroyed by Parademons, Wonder Woman was impaled by Steppenwolf and Batman’s final act was to set off the bomb that cut the power to the Parademon army. In that moment, a portal opened in the sky and Supergirl & Robin passed through it. Now, Young Jay Garrick is visited by the last god Mercury who warns of a greater evil coming to Earth…

1st appearance: Jay Garrick, Mercury, Alan Scott, Steppenwolf, Wonders of the World (Batman/Bruce Wayne), Superman/Kal-El, Wonder Woman (Diana)), Earth 2

Must ReadsTitle, Issue Number & Synopsis
Mister Terrific #8
Donald Leeson takes on a gigantic robot form, along with the name Digitus. He lays siege to Holt Industries. Mister Terrific forces him to let go of Aleeka and lures him into a trap to defeat him. Commander Lincoln and his Blackhawks try to take in Mister Terrific and confiscate his T-Sphere technology, but media presence scares them off. Later, Aleeka resigns from Holt Industries after making her feelings to Michael Holt clear. To find out why Karen Starr stole Quantum Tunnelling secrets from him, Mister Terrific actives his portal to follow her trail. But where will he end up?
Earth 2 #2
Before he dies, Mercury grants Jay Garrick his power of speed. Jay accidentally runs to Poland where he’s confronted by a winged woman. Mister Terrific finds himself on Earth 2 where he’s immediately confronted by Terry Sloan. Alan Scott proposes to Sam Zhao on a train journey in China, but the train explodes before Sam can answer…

1st appearance: Hawkgirl/Kendra Munoz-Saunders, Terry Sloan, Sam Zhao
Earth 2 #3
Only Alan Scott survives the explosion aboard his train when he’s saved by a strange green fire, the embodiment of Earth’s energy. It chooses Alan as the planet’s new defender, the Green Lantern. With a warrior of the Green chosen, the Grey begins sucking life from the world and unleashes its own undead champion, Solomon Grundy. In Poland, Hawkgirl tests Jay’s abilities as a fighter while death begins to surround them…
Earth 2 #4
Hawkgirl, Jay Garrick and the new Green Lantern follow the trail of the Rot to Washington and tackle Solomon Grundy. The media name Jay the Flash. The US send their super-soldier Al Pratt, the size-changing Atom, into the fray. He stomps down Grundy, makes it clear he intends to bring Hawkgirl in and orders everyone to stand down…

Must ReadsTitle, Issue Number & Synopsis
Earth 2 #0
Six years ago (also as part of ZERO MONTH), Mister 08 accompanied Superman, Wonder Woman & Batman on a mission to oppose Darkseid’s forces on Earth; Mister 08 betrayed his allies in order to move the war effort forward, creating multiple fire pits across the planet in the process…
Earth 2 #5
The international military organisation known as the World Council send Commander Wesley Dodds and his Sandmen to retrieve the President. They’ve tasked the Atom with defeating Solomon Grundy and detaining the new ‘Wonders’. But Grundy comes back. Green Lantern projects himself into the Grey, leaving it up to Hawkgirl, the Flash & Atom to work together against Grundy. The Grey offers to restore Sam Zhao to life if the Lantern gives it/them his loyalty. The World Council bring Terry Sloan in as an advisor, despite the protests of Commander Amar Khan. Sloan launches a nuclear strike on Washington DC…
Earth 2 #6
The Grey’s attempt to lure the Green Lantern gives him the key to Solomon Grundy’s defeat. He sends Grundy to the Moon, then redirects the missiles into space. The Atom initially switches his focus back to apprehending Hawkgirl & the Flash, but ultimately lets them go. Hawkgirl saves the Lantern as he falls back to Earth, but rejects their suggestion to form a team…

Must ReadsIssue & FalloutEvent / Crossover
Earth 2 #7-12 (2013)
Steepenwolf is revealed to have remained on Earth 2; the Atom and his World Army allies continue to hunt the Flash and Hawkgirl; the Flash and Hawkgirl gain a new ally in Doctor Fate.
Huntress #1-6 (2011-2012)
Robin (Helena Wayne) of Earth 2 is revealed to have been transported to Prime Earth; in the five years that have passed, Helena has created a new life for herself as the vigilante Huntress.
Earth 2 Annual #1 (2013)
The origin of the Atom is revealed; a new Batman emerges; Hawkgirl searches for Sam Zhau’s killer.

Earth 2 #13 (2013)
The green Lantern finally relents and joins the new Wonders of the World alongside, the Flash, Hawkgirl and Doctor Fate.
World’s Finest #1-4 (2012)
In an effort to return to her own reality, ‘Karen Farr’ (secretly Kara Zor-El, the Supergirl of Earth 2) stole the Hole Industries tech to try and open a Boom Tube; ‘Karen’ takes on the new identity Power Girl; pieces of Kara Zor-El and Helena Waynes lives stranded on Earth 2 for the previous five years are revealed.
Earth 2 #14-19 (2013-2014)
The Wonders of the World face the rise of Darkseid’s forces once again, including his all-powerful Hunger Dogs; Brutaal of the Hunger Dogs is revealed to be a corrupted Superman; another Kryptonian called Val-Zod is revealed to have been kept in a comfortable underground cell by Terry Sloan, away from the Earth’s sun.
Worlds’ Finest #10-15 (2013)
Holt Industries are actually taken over by DeSaad who tries to steal back the Quantum Tunnelling tech that would help him return to Earth 2 or Apokolips.
Earth 2 #24-25 (2014)
Val-Zod unleashes his powers and, wearing a Kryptonian costume, becomes Earth 2’s new Superman.
Worlds’ Finest #26 (2014)
Huntress and Power Girl finally return home to Earth 2 to see it in turmoil.
Earth 2 #26 (2015)
The new Superman faces Brutaal in battle; Brutall is revealed to be a ‘Bizarro’ clone of Superman.
Earth 2 #15.2: Solomon Grundy (2013)
Solomon Grundy returns to Earth, immediately resuming his search for the Green Lantern.
Earth 2: World’s End #1-2 (2014)
Darkseid returns to reclaim Earth 2; Secrets regarding the death of Sam Zhou and the fall of Superman, Wonder Woman and Batman are finally revealed; Power Girl and Huntress face the ‘replacement’ Batman and Superman; the Grey rises again and summons Solomon Grundy.

Earth 2: World’s End #10-15 (2015)
The real Superman is revealed to be alive, having been kept prisoner by DeSaad for years; following a serious injury in battle, the Atom sacrifices himself to save the last survivors of Earth 2; Superman sacrifices himself once final time to save Earth 2.

Earth 2: World’s End #20 (2015)
Solomon Grundy crumbles to nothing when his purpose is served and the Earth’s Parliament select the Green Lantern as their sole champion.

Earth 2 #32 (2015)
Mister Terrific returns to Prime Earth.

Earth 2: World’s End #22 (2015)
Sam Zhou’s spirit becomes the Avatar of the White.

Earth 2: World’s End #26 (2015)
Earth 2 is destroyed in the war with Darkseid.
Convergence #8 (2015)
The denizens of Earth 2 find a new world to call home.
Earth 2: The Society #1-3 (2015)
While the people of Earth 2 rebuild their lives, Terry Sloan continues to plot; fate finally catches up to Terry Sloan when he’s killed for possession of the Genesis Device.
The Green Lantern #11 (2019)
Alan Scott appears as one of the Green Lanterns of the Multiverse.

Collected Edition TitleIncludes…
Earth 2 vol.1: The GatheringEarth 2 #1-6
Earth 2 vol.2: The Tower of FateDC Universe Presents #0 [part]

Earth 2 #0, 7-12

Collected Edition TitleIncludes…
Mister Terrific vol.1: Mind GamesMister Terrific #1-8

Reading Order ©OmniverseComicsGuide 2023

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