(Spoilers for DC Comics released 07/20/2021)
If you missed last week’s report, check it out here.
(Words in italics signal actions)
The GC52 Logo appears on televisions, computers, and all other types of viewing devices at its normally scheduled time. Lead Anchor Dan McMahon sits at the center of the newsroom behind his desk. This week he’s wearing a powdered blue button-upoutlined by the large window behind him looking out over Metropolis. The Daily Planet globe is visible behind him as the setting sun sparkles off the crown jewel of the City of Tomorrow. The GC52 theme music begins to dim as the actual program begins.
Dan: Good Morning, Good Afternoon, and Good Evening to all our wonderful viewers from the docks of Coast City to the furthest reaches of Oa, you are watching the multiverse’s best news show that brings you the news that you need to know! As always, I’m your host, Dan McMahon, doing my part to bring you up to the minute updates on the worlds you live in! To start us off tonight, lets check in with our friends at the Hall of Justice!
The camera cuts to show Kevin’s face extremely close; it is tilted upwards so that only the sky can be seen behind him. It is shaking heavily. Kevin is sweating profusely and talking extremely fast.
Kevin: Hi Dan! Nothing to report here, everything is fine.
Dan’s voice is heard, though the camera remains on Kevin, who suddenly winces at what sounds very much like an explosion.
Dan: Uh, nothing…. To report?
Kevin: Nope, nothing. Back to you in the studio!
Dan: Because we heard there was a situation at the Hall of Justice?
Kevin: Hmm? A situation? Nope, nope, everything’s fine.
Dan: Really. Fine. There wasn’t an attack by an alien named Synmar? Who recently attacked the United Planets, and has a noted mad-on for Superman?
More muffled explosions; there is a flare of light in the corner of the screen and the camera takes a particularly big bounce. Kevin swallows.
Kevin: OH that situation. Um, yes, uh, I suppose that is correct. In fact, it does seem that the entire Justice League mobilized to battle this alien attacker outside the Hall. That did happen.
Dan: And….. did they win?
Dan: ….did the Justice League win?
Kevin: Oh! Uh…. Probably? Let’s say yes, let’s say they definitely won and that is –
The camera bounces again, and falls; we suddenly see that it has been propped up with Kevin in the back of an open-topped car that is driving rapidly away from the Hall of Justice, which remains surrounded by explosions and distant fighting super-people.
Dan: ….Kevin, as our intrepid Justice League reporter, I’m sure you’re not currently fleeing the scene of a major battle in order to save your own skin. Because –
Kevin: Listen, I never asked for this be – uh, I mean, of course not! In fact, I just heard a tip that Deathstroke the Terminator was seen out in the outskirts of the city, where Green Arrow and Black Canary are believed to have gone, and I decided to investigate. Personally. And immediately.
Dan: You decided to leave a Justice League battle in progress to investigate an unconfirmed villain sighting on the outskirts of Washington DC?
Kevin: (Very quietly) I never said it was the outskirts of DC.
Dan: Wait but… you’re in DC now…. Which city were you planning to go to –
Kevin: (Even more quietly, looking sideways) …..Coast City.
Dan: COAST CI-
Before either of them can say anything more, there is a massive explosion at the Hall of Justice in the background, lighting up the entire horizon, as Synmar rips through the front of the building. The shockwave booms out, and as Kevin yells, the camera tumbles through the air and cuts to black.
Dan: We may need to look into a new Justice League correspondent, let’s pop over to see what’s going on in Katie’s neck of the woods.
The camera cuts to Katie, standing in front of an imploded pile of mud on the ground. A singular blood streak paints the ground red, ending at the dock’s edge behind her. She appears perturbed. Avoiding the residual gore, she moves toward her beloved black cat, Felicia, as the feline bounds toward Katie.
Katie: I’m here at the Gotham Docks, where more than a catfight has occurred. After three consecutive days of protests in Alleytown, a GCPD standoff with the protestors, explosions, fires, and Mayor Nakano’s iron grip on the city of Alleytown, I’m not surprised to find more signs of carnage today.
She sighs, the weight of grief evident by her demeanor. Felicia rubs up against Katie’s legs and purrs sweetly.
Katie: Who needs people when you have cats? You don’t cause any trouble, Felicia.
Bending down Katie hugs the cat. Felicia nuzzles her face with affection. A coughing sound interrupts, alerting Katie that she better get back to the report, or she’s in the doghouse.
Katie: Speaking of cats, Alleytown’s local heroine Catwoman was spotted pouncing across rooftops last night. We know Catwoman has been working with Alleytown’s youth to better the city, but I have newly leaked information about some additional allies in her struggle against Nakano’s attempts to shut down communication.
Here’s a riddle: I often wear a skintight catsuit, but I am not Catwoman. Who am I? The answer: Why, the Riddler, of course! We should have a “Who Wore It Better Poll”, between Catwoman and the Riddler on the GC52 site…Riddler, formerly known as a Catwoman ally, apparently recruited more vivacious villains to their cause. And unfortunately, what you see before me in this oozing pile of brown…can only be the remains of the captain of clay, Clayface.
Her face crumples up in slight revulsion as she catches a scent of charred clay.
Katie: Sources tell me that Catwoman, Clayface, Croc, Knockout, Firefly, and Cheshire teamed up with Catwoman and her network of kids in Alleytown. What happened to poor Clayface here remains a mystery. Word on the streets indicates the infamous new creep, Father Valley, as the culprit. Valley is also implicated in the recent St. Thomas Church explosion. The preaching predator better pray he doesn’t get caught, because he needs to be locked up in Arkham Asylum ASAP.
As for this trail of blood, DNA testers identified it as…Catwoman’s. A fight with Father Valley must have ensued because I don’t know anyone else that could draw blood from the fleet-footed feline. Catwoman is currently MIA, but Felicia here can track her down…
Katie looks down at Felicia hopefully. Felicia sniffs the edge of the dock.
Katie: Cats always land on their feet, right? I’m sure Catwoman is fine…although, it would be an ideal time for a certain Batman to emerge from his cave now… That’s all for today. Stay safe, and cuddle a cat.
The camera cuts back to Dan in the studio.
Dan: Wearing all leather in July cannot be fun right? I would need to cover myself in baby powder so I didn’t cha- sorry. It sounds like we have an incoming report from Mr. Tubes?
The camera switches to drone footage as we’re back on Mr. Tubes’ mech scaling the side of a building. A building where one Mayor Melinda Zucco resides. After witnessing Nightwing enter, Mr. Tubes knew there was a scoop! But once he ends close enough to peek into a window it appears Nightwing has left and Dick Grayson has arrived. Being unable to hear exactly the conversation between Grayson and Zucco, our furry friend grabs his piece of graphite and a sticky note. He climbs out of his mech only to jump right back in only to reappear with goggles which he then turns and the feed switches from the drone to Mr. Tubes’ own recording feed! It’s time for him to get the scoop.
He skitters closer to the pair as a door opens and an older woman appears to greet Dick. Mr. Tubes begins to write down: Zucco- Mother know Dick. Tony Zucco- Kill Graysons. Melinda = Grayson Sister.
Before the trio notices, Tubes hears a large group coming down the hall. He slips under the door for a peak to see Blockbuster and his goon squad approaching the door.
Mr. Tubes: In Ferretish: Oh shit!
He then skitters back across Zucco’s home to his mech which is perched on the side of the building. Before he climbs back in he notices a dorky caterpillar climbing slowly up the side of the building. Thinking nothing of it he crawls in and takes his goggles off. Once the camera feed reverts to the drone it notices the caterpillar has a small radio around its neck. This caterpillar is no caterpillar, but the evil Mr. Mind, who wants his mech back! But Tubes doesn’t know any of this so he just lets go of the wall, falling back to the street, which now has a crater in it!
Mr. Tubes: Typing on his keyboard for the mech to say: Back to you Dan!
Dan doesn’t even seem phased by the mech-ferret at this point.
Dan: Well, things sound like they’re going uh, well, for Nightwing. Let’s pop in to check on the latest from Titans Academy!
A small person with a mustache and a baseball cap appears on the screen, there’s a certain familiarity to some of their facial features.
Bree: This is Br-…ian, reporting from the base of Titans tower. I’m definitely a new reporter, NOT a long-time staff member with a restraining order from a Titan. Ahem- Speaking of Titans, there has been quite the flurry of activity on the tower grounds today!
Bree/Brian: The most interesting of which is that Shazam has revealed himself to be amongst the Titans! And…having a difficult time controlling his powers. A recurring theme here. However, the older Titans seem to be particularly on edge about that today. I wonder if their anxiety has anything to do with the presence of an unusual guest I spotted covertly entering campus earlier. A certain someone that has an affinity for sweeping capes and a gold helmet.
The reporter pauses to look over their shoulder before continuing in a lower tone.
Bree/Brian: I also saw something quite…otherworldly, Mrs. Raven’s star pupil opened a portal with another male student. A LOT of magic is happening in that tower. I’m not sure if I have a good feeling about it. Oh! I could partially hear the two boys talking to each other- from below their open dorm window- their names are Dane and Billy. Billy was going on about some rescue mission for a…rock of eternity? Seemed like a lot of trouble, even for a magical rock.
Brian adjusts their mustache as it seems to curl off their face at the bottom for a second.
Bree/Brian: A-Anyways, that’s all I have at the moment. This place always seems to leave me with more questions than answers, perhaps I’ll have juicer scoops for the folks at home next week. Back to you Dan!
With that, the camera returns to Dan in the studio.
Dan: Breaking news coming out of Central City, we take you there now live!
The camera shows Brandon standing in front of a hospital currently engulfed in flames. Central City’s best firefighters are already on the case, and a series of crimson and gold streaks can be seen behind him. Brandon is wearing some business casual that looks rather new, though he is still wearing the somewhat ragged bow tie he was last seen in.
Brandon: Dan! Good to see a familiar face. I stand in front of one of the worst fires Central City has seen in some time. Luckily, The Flash formerly known as Kid Flash is in action, and he’s currently getting everyone free from danger.
The Flash zips by, leaving another civilian next to Brandon. She looks like she’s been stuck in a wind tunnel testing out a new way of making BBQ ribs.
Brandon: Speak of the devil! Ma’am, do you know who caused thi- never mind, dumb question. If it’s Central City, it’s Heatwave.
Civilian: Of course it’s Heatwave. He walked right by me, asking everyone to stay out of his way. He has something planned for The Flash, and I don’t think he cares which one.
Brandon: A Rogue with a grudge? That can’t be good.
Brandon holds a hand to his ear.
Brandon: I’m also receiving reports that this Flash was seen jetting out of Terrifitech seconds before arriving on the scene. Was the Kid looking for a job with one of his fellow heroes? He’s back for the first time in what feels like years, and Mr. Terriffic doesn’t always run in the same circles as the Flashes. Aside from the elder Flash, anyhow.
There’s a pause as Brandon looks at the civilian to his left.
Brandon: You guys have the older Flash with the winged helmet too, right? I’d hate to get this stuff wrong.
Realizing he’s still on-air, Brandon turns back as a massive explosion of flame rips out of the hospital’s roof.
Brandon: Looks like things are heating up! I’ll keep you updated on what happens next.
Thinking the camera is off, Brandon facepalms.
Brandon: Oh god, I actually used a pun without realizing it. Kill me now.
Dan sits at his desk trying to keep a straight face.
Dan: Tragic about the fire, hope things start to cool down. It actually seems as if our Lantern correspondent is on Earth for this week’s report. Let’s check in!
The camera cuts to Thomas standing on a high-rise balcony overlooking an alien spaceship firing beams above New York City.
Thomas: Hello Dan, I’m here in New York City and not Metropolis, covering a highly unprecedented alien assault on a major American city. Sources indicate that several members of the Justice League have been captured, but a Green Lantern or two may turn up any minute to turn the tide. Oh, look at that! Zoom in on that!
The camera zooms in on a shiny, gold-colored superhero flying up to attack the alien craft, deflecting fireballs and firing beams upward at it from his wrists.
Thomas: Is that Gold Lantern from the 31st century? All right, Earth’s got this on lock! Wait… what’s that drone zipping around him? Goldie just landed a great shot on the alien ship! That must have disabled their communications. Time to break in and free the Justice League, right on time! It looks like a dependable, steadfast hero has made all the difference today–
Thomas touches his earpiece.
Thomas: What’s that? Hold up the newest trending video to the camera? Um okay, we’ve got some breaking news folks, let’s take a look.
Thomas holds his phone up to the camera and plays a message from Booster Gold.
Booster Gold: Yo! I am back and you are watching live as I risk life and limb in an effort to trash the most dangerous threat New York has ever seen! A reminder that if you want to support one of the few heroes who aren’t bazillionaires, contribute to my PlzPayMe account! Pay for a full year’s subscription and you get complimentary V.I.P. status!
Thomas pockets his phone.
Thomas: Alright, alright, no soliciting on air! I should’ve known this was a Booster story the second our PA said it was a Green Lantern scoop. They’re all still off-world! Well, maybe this could’ve been an Alan Scott story, but not anymore. Just more performative heroics in search of a buck. Let’s pack it up everyone, nothing to see —
Whoa! Did you see that? It’s The Bug! Blue Beetle’s here! Do you think he has a PlzPayMe account? I’ve got an extra credit card I could use to donate… Keep rolling! Let me check on social, see what everyone’s saying about the Blue & Gold reunion…oh man…
The camera cuts back to Dan.
Dan: Looks like we can add a couple more colors to Thomas’ beat, eh? One of our reporters is on a very important but chilly mission…
The camera cuts to Cass sitting at a desk full of crystals and working on a computer. We can only see their back, but their hair is all messed up, and they’re kind of shaking. From off-screen, the camera operator reminds Rodrigo the feed is live.
Cass: Can you just wait a moment, hacking into the Fortress of Solitude’s security system is not the easiest job in the world…wait… I’M IN! I’M IN!
Cass faces the camera, their eyes are really red, they are holding a coffee cup, and they are wearing a shirt that says “You wanted Lois Lane, but you’re stuck with me”. It seems like they haven’t slept in days.
Cass: Well, hello there! This is Cass, your favorite reporter from the future. Today we are discussing Superman (I think). After being involved in the arrest of famous metahuman terrorist Manchester Black, Superman took the criminal into his care, presumably to his fortress. And now that I have access to the security feed I can tell you what happened. I’ll try to be quick.
Soooooo… apparently when Superman was younger he made a promise to this guy called Kennedy (I have no idea who he is) about making the world a better place, but then as time went by and Superman started losing his powers, he realized that that the Justice League and he underestimated…well, everything. Now Superman is asking Manchester to help him create a team so he can fulfill his promise.
Now, this leaves us with a lot of questions. Can Superman trust Manchester Black? He has tried to kill him many times. But an even more pressing question is: Can Manchester trust Superman? Can we? Because, let me tell you he might not be the blue boy scout we used to know, for starters I’ve just discovered he has a room where he can watch anything in the world…or anyone. Makes you wonder, right?
Cass looks around the room, and then they come closer to the camera
Cass: Also, I have a contact that says one of Superman’s oldest enemies has discovered something new about kryptonite, something that could destroy the man of tomorrow… but I can’t tell you much more… or they’ll know.
Mysterious voice in the background: We already do.
The transmission is suddenly cut, and it goes back to the studio.
Dan: Well that was…interesting. Anyways, that’s all we have for you, so as always… be it the Bat Symbol in Gotham, a red streak through Central City, or a golden lasso on Themyscira… GC52 has you covered with the news you need to know. Till next week, I’m your host Dan McMahon. Be strong in all your convictions.
Books covered this week:
- Justice League #65 by Brian Michael Bendis, Steve Pugh, Romulo Fajardo Jr., and Josh Reed.
- Catwoman #33 by Ram V, Fernando Blanco, Jordie Bellaire, and Tom Napolitano.
- Nightwing #82 by Tom Taylor, Bruno Redondo, Rick Leonardi, Neil Edwards, Andy Lanning, Scott Hanna, Adriano Lucas, and Wes Abbott.
- Shazam #1 by Tim Sheridan, Clayton Henry, Marcelo Maiolo, and Rob Leigh.
- The Flash #772 by Jeremy Adams, Will Conrad, Alex Sinclair, and Steve Wands.
- Blue & Gold #1 by Dan Jurgens, Ryan Sook, and Rob Leigh.
- Superman and the Authority #1 by Grant Morrison, Mikel Janín, Jordie Bellaire, and Steve Wands.