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"Breathless": Day 1

Quote1.png It's a trick question, Renée... not who are you... but who are you going to become? Time to change... Quote2.png

52 #38 is an issue of the series 52 (Volume 1) with a cover date of March, 2007. It was published on January 24, 2007.

Synopsis for "Breathless"

Day 1
Renée Montoya and Charlie are in the back of a military jeep, driving along the steep inclines of the Himalayan Alps. Charlie's condition grows worse, and his delusions are unbearable. Renée prays that they reach Nanda Parbat in time.

Day 2
A supply ship drops off a load of thermometers and canned beans to Oolong Island. Will Magnus intercepts the shipment and finds time to talk with Professor Morrow. Morrow asks him about his progress on his Plutonium Man project. He then tells him that the Science Squad is on the verge of a technological New World Order.

They meet with Chang Tzu, Sivana and Veronica Cale inside the compound. Standing before an elaborate machine, Chang Tzu begins quoting passages from the Bible of Crime. From out of the machine step the fruits of the Science Squad's labors – three of the Four Horsemen of Apokolips. These twisted, over-sized creatures represent the avatars of Pestilence, War, and Death. In unison, they bellow the name "Blakk Ah-Dumm".

Day 3
Renée arrives in a small village, dragging Charlie along on a dogsled. She asks some of the locals for directions to Nanda Parbat.

Day 4
In Metropolis, John Henry Irons, Doctor Pieter Cross and Kala Avasti examine the body of one of the casualties from Luthor's Everyman Project. A small robotic insect operated via remote control flies into the room and addresses Irons. Starlight's voice comes out of the device and she tells him that she is going to find the underlying truth behind the Project. He warns her to stay clear, but she cuts the communication.

Day 5
Renée finally arrives in Nanda Parbat. She applies some of Charlie's pseudoderm to his face, hoping that it will stave off further illness. Charlie gives her a final bit of sage advice then falls suddenly silent.

Appearing in "Breathless"

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Synopsis for "The Origin of the Red Tornado"

Professor T.O. Morrow created the android known as the Red Tornado. The air elemental known as Ulthoon took control of the Tornado's android body and used him as a weapon against the Justice League of America and Justice Society of America. The Tornado overcame the experience with a new sense of morality. He became a member of the JLA and developed a close bond with Kathy Sutton and her daughter Traya.

Appearing in "The Origin of the Red Tornado"

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  • This issue shipped on January 24th, 2007.
  • Final appearance of the Vic Sage incarnation of the Question. He dies off-panel shortly following this issue.
  • Veronica Cale quotes a passage from the Bible of Crime, "Yurrd the Unknown, the... the Hunger-Lord rode out before the others". At the time of publication, readers were unaware that Yurrd the Unknown was also Sobek.
  • "Breathless" is reprinted in 52 Vol. 3 of the 2007 4-volume edition, 52 Volume Two of the 2016 2-volume edition, and 52 Omnibus.


  • The ticker-tape on the bottom of the cover reads, "... The Horsemen have come... The end is near!... "
  • Doctor Sivana erroneously refers to one of the scientists as Doctor Cyclops in this issue. The identity of this scientist is unknown, but it is clearly not Doctor Cyclops.
  • At one point Doctor Mid-Nite states, "The power of faith can't be underestimated... " This ideology runs counter to his pragmatic demeanor when he encounters an alleged vampire in JSA Classified #23-24.

See Also

Recommended Reading

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