Contrary to the worlds of the normal Multiverse, those from the Dark Multiverse have their name preceded by a minus sign, such as Earth -52 compared to Earth 0, for instance. Each of those inverse worlds shown so far bears some degree of thematic resemblance to its positive coun
- Stop me if you've heard this one... worlds will live, worlds will die... but imagine if your every fear, each bad decision, gave birth to a malformed world of nightmare. A world that shouldn't exist. And desperate as it fights to survive in the light of the true multiverse far above... these worlds are doomed to rot apart, and die, because they are wrong at their core. Welcome to the Dark Multiverse. Home to stories that should never be... It's all one big cosmic joke, except no one on this side is laughing. ...well, almost no one...
The Dark Multiverse is a shadow under the primary Multiverse, one formed of every fear and bad decision ever made or dreamt. Worlds in the Dark Multiverse are fragile and constantly deteriorating, inevitably doomed to destruction by their own malformed construction.
Contrary to the worlds of the normal Multiverse, those from the Dark Multiverse have their name preceded by a minus sign, such as Earth -52 compared to Earth 0, for instance. Each of those inverse worlds shown so far bears some degree of thematic resemblance to its positive counterpart.
- Earth -52 begins as a twisted and darkened version of Prime Earth, although it has some elements of Earth-31.
- Earth -44 while also similar to Prime Earth at first, features Batman becoming a cybernetic being, while Earth 44 is centered around purely robotic versions of superheroes.
- Earth -32 and Earth 32 both deal with Bruce Wayne being granted a Green Lantern ring.
- Earth -22 and Earth 22 are both worlds in which the Joker is killed and his death served as a catalyst for a major catastrophe.
- Earth -12 and Earth 12 are both worlds in which Bruce Wayne and Diana of Themyscira are romantically involved.
- Earth -11 and Earth 11 are both worlds wherein characters are the opposite sex of their mainstream equivalents.
- Earth -1 and Earth 1 both deal with a darker, grittier take on the DC Universe, with Superman and Batman serving as the initial focus.
Because of its nature as the cradle of yet unborn worlds, the number of worlds in the Dark Multiverse is far greater than in the normal Multiverse, as seen when Barbatos chose to show to Batman the "galaxies" of worlds born from his fears. Other heroes also have had an impact on the Dark Multiverse, with many twisted versions of heroes such as The Flash, Aquaman, and Wonder Woman preparing to invade the Multiverse, even if they could have been created by Batman's fears all the same.
It wasn't always the case however. At the dawn of the creation, what would later become the Dark Multiverse was known as the World Forge, a realm of infinite possibilities which was assigned to the cosmic being Alpheus by his Mother, Perpetua, the creator of the Multiverse. The Higher Being, who will be later known as the World Forger because of his duties, was tasked to oversee his own realm as one the three fundamental part of creation, similarly to what his brothers, Mar Novu/The Monitor and Mobius/Anti-Monitor had to do with their respective realms.
The World Forge was completely composed of dark matter, a substance rich in potential, which was to be used to forge new universes out of the pure metals of creation and the hopes and fears of all sentient life. Worlds that proved themselves stable would rise up into the light to join the Orrery of Worlds, while worlds that were lacking, flawed and corrupt at the their cores had to be destroyed so that their energies would be released to fuel the birth of new universes. As the World Forger needed to find a way to destroy these unstable realities, He created his own "pet", Barbatos, then known as the Great Dragon, who was tasked to annihilate the decaying realities.
After the banishment of Perpetua and Alpheus' return to the Forge, Barbatos, who had served his master for millennia, got tired of him and his lust for destruction, which was also fueled by Perpetua's "whispers", led him to rebel against the Forger and ultimately kill him. Without the World Forger, the cycle was broken: failed universes were now allowed to exist beyond their time, festering and rotting into nothing with all the sentients beings within these realms were now suffering nightmarish ends.
Barbatos' rise to power forced the Monitor to generate a race of controller, the Fuginauts, which could ensure that anything and anyone from the Dark Multiverse could invade the Orrery of Worlds, infecting the positive realities with their corruption. In the modern days, Tempus Fuginaut is one of the last defender of the Multiverse's walls against the darkness of the Dark Multiverse, always checking on the nightmare realities.
In the course of millennia, Perpetua continued to whisper in Barbatos' ears in order to cause a new Crisis and, as a consequence, damage the Multiverse enough to ultimately free her from her prison. Barbatos was led to plan his invasion of the positive Multiverse: during the Final Crisis, the occasion finally came as Bruce Wayne aka Batman was sent back in time to the Prehistoric Era by Darkseid's Omega Beams. The event was noticed by Barbatos who chose him as his portal, and possible vessel, for his arrival into the Multiverse: the Bat God began inspiring humankind through the Bat Tribe and used the Bird Tribe, which in modern days became the Court of Owls, to enact his masterplan.
For millennia, the existence of the Dark Multiverse was unknown to the Prime Multiverse's residents until, on Prime Earth, the investigations of the Blackhawk Squadron and the Challengers of the Unknown, led the latters to journey into the unknown and reach the Dark Multiverse. Barbatos' agents, the Court of Owls, engineered the "mantling" of Batman by using the five native heavy metals of the Dark Multiverse, Nth Metal, Promethium, Dionesium, Electrum, and Batmanium, on him: the Dark Knight was eventually sent to that corrupted Multiverse while bringing forth Barbatos who had assembled an army of the worst Dark Multiverse Batman's counterparts, the so-called Dark Knights, who were born from Bruce Wayne's fears, under the command of the Batman who Laughs, a Batman that was infected by Joker's toxin.
With the help of the Multiversal Tuning Fork and the Phantom Zone Projector, Steel and Barry Allen aka Flash helped Superman journey into the Dark Multiverse in search of Batman, only for his entrance to be part of a trap by its denizens, who hooked him up to the same machine that Batman was powering in order to use him as a battery to drive the Multiverse into the dark, letting loose Superman's own nightmarish versions in the process.
As the Dark Knights conquered Earth 0, Barbatos recruited other nightmare counterparts of Earth 0's heroes which were held back by Wonder Woman and Hawkgirl. During the final battle, the Dark Multiverse forces were overpowering the resistence until the heroes were helped by Multiverse's heroes, which were called upon the battlefield by the mysterious 53rd Earth, and managed to use Element X to conjure and wear divine armors whose powers let them defeat Barbatos and the Dark Knights once and for all.
Later events and the return of the Batman who Laughs
With the defeat of Barbatos, who was chained somewhere into the Dark Multiverse by the Monitor, the Dark realities were now without any supreme ruler until the rise of Mandrakk, who tried to return into the Multiverse but was stopped by the Unexpected whose leader Neon altered the Dark Monitor's physiology so that he could feed on dark matter, allowing him to stay forever in the Dark Multiverse as his new ruler.
During a journey into a reality where the Black Lantern Corps conquered the universe during the Blackest Knight, Tempus Fuginaut was forced to seal the walls of this reality to stop one of its resident, Thaal Sinestro aka Limbo Lantern, from escaping the damnation of his world.
It was eventually revealed that the Batman who Laughs had survived the first invasion of the Multiverse and planned to conquer the Earth himself. First, he tried to finally kill the Batman and corrupt the planet with the help of another dark Batman, the Grim Knight;  then, he took advantage of the Justice League's war against the Legion of Doom over the dominion of the Totality, building his own army of infected heroes and use it to counter the Earths' heroes and Lex Luthor who had become the right hand of a released Perpetua. As the Batman who Laughs proposed her to further empower her with the Crisis Energies from the Dark Multiverse's unstable realities, Perpetua replaced Luthor with the One who Laughs, rewarding him by giving him the chance to build a new Dark Multiverse army and invade again Earth 0.
The Batman who Laughs returned to the Dark Multiverse where he saved from a teen Bruce Wayne, known as the maniac Robin King, from his world's annihilation and, as Laughs believed him to his trump card, masqueraded him as a Groblin. Then, he discovered the existence of the Final Bruce Wayne, a Batman from the Dark Multiverse who had replicated the same incident that created the Super-God Doctor Manhattan, becoming the almighty entity known as the Batmanhattan: the One who Laughs ambushed him as he rebuilt his body and murdered him, keeping his body for the final act of his takeover plan.
Menawhile, Tempus Fuginat summoned to the Dark Multiverse Wally West aka Flash, the Fastest Man Alive in the Multiverse, in order to save the infinite realities from a dark, unstable world which was refusing to be destroyed. Wally traveled through the realities in order to discover the origin of this realm, he finally reached the Dark Multiverse realm where he learned that it was born from his fear to not see again his lost children, Irey Jai: as he met them again for the first time since he disappeared, Wally made a deal with Tempus to undo the creation of this nightmare world in exchange for his children's safety. Tempus agreed so Wally sat down on the Mobius Chair which supercharged him with the Connective Energy of Doctor Manhattan, saving the Multiverse by erasing the unstable realm and planning to heal the wounds in the reality as his "predecessor" tried to do in the past.
Some time later, during his journey through the dark realities, Tempus Fuginaut was confronted by a survivor of one of these worlds, Duke Thomas aka The Last Monitor, who attacked him for not interfering to save the doomed universes from their destinies and proclaimed himself the savior of the Dark Multiverse as the Final Knight.
The rise of the Darkest Knight
In the Prime Multiverse, Earth 0 was overrun by the Batman who Laughs' army and remade as the Metalverse by Perpetua while the Dark Knight made a deal with the Anti-Monitor, Superboy-Prime and Darkseid to win their respective Crises in the Dark Multiverse worlds whose Crisis Energy would fuel the Mother of the Multiverse forever.
After the Earth's heroes rebelled against the One who Laughs, who had become a dark God, known as the Darkest Knight, after his mind was transplanted into the Batmanhattan's body, Wonder Woman assembled a team to travel to the Dark Multiverse as they wanted to steal the Crisis Energy and fuel the Mobius Chair in order to supercharge Wally West enough to make him able to defeat both Perpetua and the Darkest Knight; during their journey, the heroes also met a caged Barbatos who mocked them for believing to be able to win against the Darkest Knight.
The team split in three groups as Batman reached the first Crisis' dark world, Wonder Woman landed to the Infinite Crisis' reality and Superman arrived to the Final Crisis' realm where they discovered the Darkest Knight's alterations and their former villains' dominion: Diana eventually managed to convince Superboy-Prime to stand with them against the villains and redirect the Dark Multiverse energy to Wally West. However, it was revealed that the Mobius Chair was previously altered so that the Dark Multiverse' energies were sent to the Darkest Knight who became an omnipotent version of himself that managed to even murder Perpetua and create his own multiverse which was inspired by the Dark Multiverse.
In order to defeat the Darkest Knight and his army, Wonder Woman traveled again into the Dark Multiverse, reaching the Forge of Worlds where Darkseid had refuged after the undoing of his dark realm. Despite Darkseid's warnings, Diana of Themyscira bound herself with her lasso to the Forge itself: because of the Forge's possibilities, Diana managed to unknot the reality itself as all the memories from past events resurfaced into the mind of Earth 0's residents.. Later, a Forge of Worlds-empowered Wonder Woman managed to destroy the Darkest Knight at the End of Time and, as a reward for saving their lives, the supreme Hands chose to spare both Multiverse and Dark Multiverse from their inevitable destruction.
In the aftermath of the rebith of the Multiverse, Lex Luthor revealed to the other Totality members that the Dark Multiverse still existed under the shadow of the positive Multiverse; it was also know one of the Muiltiverses that form the so-called Infinite Frontier, a little Omniverse into the greater Omniverse.
List of Realities
The Dark Multiverse is largely composed by dark worlds were heroes and villains' lives were damaged beyond repair, damning the universe. Only a few realities were given a real designation:
- Earth -52: A universe where Batman lost his family and decide to get Barry Allen's speed. The Dark Knight kidnapped him and forced the speedster to merge with him so they became a speed monster known as the Red Death.
- Earth -44: A reality where some Batman's villains learned his real identity and attacked him into the Batcave where Bane murdered Alfred Pennyworth. A raging Batman was helped by Cyborg in creating an Alfred-based AI whose desire to protect its "son" led it to go evil and murder every Gotham's villains and ultimately the Justice League. Then, Batman himself was forced to become the Murder Machine.
- Earth -32: A universe where a young Bruce Wayne was chosen as a Green Lantern in Crime Alley after his parent's murder. He used his new powers to unleash his fury on Joe Chill and, later, on Gotham's criminals. Eventually, his willpower ultimately overpowering the ring and unleashing darke forces into the universe which destroyed the Green Lanterns and the Guardians of the Universe; he came to be known as the Dawnbreaker.
- Earth -22: A universe where Joker drove Batman to kill him. His death unleashed a powerful toxin which infected Batman's brain and turned him into the new Joker: as he had no more restraint but his abilities were intact, Bruce became the Batman Who Laughs, slaughtering all of his villains and allies and causing the world to become a wasteland.
- Earth -12: A universe where Ares waged war on Earth's heroes for two years which culminated in Batman stealing his helm and power so he killed the God but this new power made him sink into madness. Bruce murdered his beloved Wonder Woman and the rest of the Justice League before destroying the Olympus and its Gods as the Merciless.
- Earth -11: A universe where, in the aftermath of Sylvester Kyle's death, his lover Bryce Wayne killed many rogue metahumans and waged war on Aquawoman's Atlantean army, forcing the Batwoman to become a Human-Atlantean hybrid, known as the Drowned, who let the world become a giant ocean.
- Earth -1: A universe where Superman somehow went evil and murdered his friends, villains, and even his own wife. Batman chose to sacrifice himself in order to save the world, injecting himself with the Doomsday Virus and finally killing Superman; however, he worsened the situation as he became a feral monster known as the Devastator.
They are also shown to exist a large number of unnamed realities which are not only born from the hopes and fears of the positive Multiverse's residents but even from certain events from all of its history, such as Crisis on Infinite Earths or Flashpoint, which, at some point in time, caused the birth in the Dark Multiverse of nightmare version of themselves where the evil conquered the universe. Among these realities, there are multiple versions of Earths from all of the Multiverse's past iterations: for example, they exist alternate versions of Pre-Crisis Earths, like Earth-Two, 52's realities such as New Earth or Earth-30, New 52's Prime Earth or Earth 12 and even from the Hypertime realities.
Points of Interest
- Earth -52
- Earth -44
- Earth -32
- Earth -22
- Earth -12
- Earth -11
- Earth -1
- Event Horizon
- Forge of Worlds
- Other Place/New Myrra
- Dark Knights
- The Devastator
- The Drowned
- The Merciless
- The Batman Who Laughs
- The Dawnbreaker
- The Murder Machine
- The Red Death
- Dr. Arkham
- Castle Bat
- Baby Batman
- Night Glider
- The Grim Knight
- Black Monday
- The Pearl
- The Batman Who Frags
- Superman Blue
- Dragon of Barbatos
- Hawk Patrol
- Mayor Joker
- Janet Wayne
- Joker Dragons
- The Salesman
- Dark Prof
- Dark Gods
- The Otherkind
- Upside-Down Man
- The Conjoined
- The Offspring
- The Rip
- The Soup
- Mayor Wayne
- Warden Wayne
- May Wayne
- Saint Batman
- Batman the Broken
- Son of Bane
- Dark Metal Men
- Nth Metal Man
- Dark Fates
- The Eradicator (Lois Lane)
- Limbo Lantern
- Avatar of Nekron
- OBAC (One-Beetle-Army-Corps)
- Joker Dragons
- Batmanhattan/"Final Bruce Wayne"
- Robin King
- Lightning Knights
- Rainbow Batman Corps
- Swamp King
- Batman the Silenced
- Senator Elliot
- The Gray Son
- Hecate/Wonder Woman
- The Flash (Eobard Thawne)
- Dread Lantern
- The Last Monitor/The Final Knight (Duke Thomas)
- Dragon-Slayer (Dick Grayson)
- Dragons of the Bat
- The Dark Multiverse isn't part of Perpetua's design as it was never meant to propagate with unstable worlds.
- Each universe is based on any hero or villain's unspoken fears.
- According to Darkfather, most of Superman's Dark Multiverse versions are tyrants who rule humanity.
- According to the Robin King, evil counterparts of villains take the form of good version of themselves as they fear being good.
- The Batman Who Laughs mentions that somewhere in the Dark Multiverse, there is a version of Bruce Wayne who fused with Lex Luthor and almost chose him over the Murder Machine.
- Appearances of Dark Multiverse
- Location Gallery: Dark Multiverse
- Catalogued images related to Dark Multiverse
- Batman: Lost #1
- The Batman Who Laughs #1
- Justice League (Volume 4) #22
- Dark Nights: Metal #4
- The Unexpected (Volume 3) #6
- Dark Nights: Metal #1
- Dark Nights: Metal #2
- Dark Nights: Metal #3
- Dark Nights: Metal #6
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Blackest Night #1
- The Batman Who Laughs: The Grim Knight #1
- Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen #1
- Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen #4
- Dark Nights: Death Metal Robin King #1
- Dark Nights: Death Metal Legends of the Dark Knights #1
- Flash Forward #1
- Flash Forward #6
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Dark Nights Metal #1
- Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1
- Dark Nights: Death Metal #1
- Dark Nights: Death Metal Trinity Crisis #1
- Dark Nights: Death Metal #4
- Dark Nights: Death Metal #2
- Dark Nights: Death Metal #3
- Dark Nights: Death Metal #5
- Dark Nights: Death Metal #6
- Dark Nights: Death Metal #7
- Batman: The Red Death #1
- Batman: The Murder Machine #1
- Batman: The Dawnbreaker #1
- The Batman Who Laughs #1
- Batman: The Merciless #1
- Batman: The Drowned #1
- Batman: The Devastator #1
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Batman: Knightfall #1
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: The Death of Superman #1
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Infinite Crisis #1
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Teen Titans: The Judas Contract #1
- Deathstroke (Volume 4) #46
- Deathstroke (Volume 4) #50
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Batman: Hush #1
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Wonder Woman: War of the Gods #1
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Flashpoint #1
- Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Crisis on Infinite Earths #1
- The Flash (Volume 5) #33
- Justice League (Volume 3) #33
- The Batman Who Laughs (Volume 2) #6
- Dark Nights: Metal #5
- Dark Nights: Death Metal Infinite Hour Exxxtreme! #1
- Jim Johnson (June 19, 2020). 'Dark Nights: Death Metal - Scott Snyder Confirms Red Bat’s Identity'. CBR.com. Retrieved on July 2, 2020.
- The Batman Who Laughs (Volume 2) #5
- The Batman Who Laughs (Volume 2) #3
- The Batman Who Laughs (Volume 2) #7
- The Batman Who Laughs (Volume 2) #2
- Justice League (Volume 4) #54
- The Flash (Volume 5) #70
- Heroes in Crisis #1
- Dark Nights: Death Metal Robin King #1
- The Batman Who Laughs (Volume 2) #1
- The Darkfather stated that all the Dark Multiverse counterparts of Superman are tyrants who rules over the humanity.
- Dark Nights: Death Metal The Last 52: War of the Multiverses #1
- The Batman Who Laughs (Volume 2) #4