- Phantom armies clash on the battlefields of limbo. This strange, last outpost of existence. The forgotten versus the yet to be. Like some half-remembered dream. All the rules of existence are being broken. The time has come for each of us to face the apocalypse in his own way. Lois. Hold on.
- — Superman
Synopsis for "To Be Continued"
Ultraman has been driven mad by Mandrakk's corrupting force, sparking a battle among the denizens of Limbo. Billy Batson and Overman listen to Monitor Zillo Valla warning about Mandrakk's awakening. Overman wants to kill the Monitor, but Billy convinces him to spare Zillo and heed her warning. Impressed by Billy's wisdom, Zillo reminds him of the magic word he uses to access his powers.
Captain Marvel returns just in time to prevent Ultraman from touching Superman and annihilating each other. Superman tells Captain Marvel to take the Ultima Thule and return to the Multiverse, while Captain Atom informs Superman of his new understanding of reality: two creatures of different nature are in fact symmetries. If they are combined, they can become a new creature, a robot powered by opposite essences.
Superman agrees to test Captain Atom's theory in exchange for a droplet of the Bleed, needing it to save Lois' life. Captain Atom combines Ultraman, the hate crime, and Superman, the selfless act, and sends them to a higher realm of existence: Nil, home of the Monitors. Superman and Ultraman's combined form is an entity of pure thought, a cosmic robot created by Monitor Dax Novu against the incoming darkness. Because of his stronger will, Superman acquires absolute control over his merged form.
Once in Nil, Superman is greeted by Monitor Weeja Dell, lover of Nix Uotan, who takes him to the castle of Monitors. Superman then finally understands the secret of the multiverse: the Monitors are celestial parasites! Vampire gods who have been draining the "Orrery" dry, feeding off of The Bleed for their own sustenance. The Monitors only trapped Dax Novu because he showed them their true faces.
Mandrakk initiates his final assault and Superman flies onward to confront him. The battle is fierce and Mandrakk taunts Superman with his wife's impending death. Zillo Valla inspires Superman to never give up by reminding him of his story as a son of Krypton. Mandrakk angrily kills Zillo but heartbreakingly realizes the woman he killed was his former lover. With renewed vigor, Superman attacks Mandrakk and throws him into the endless abyss surrounding Nil, never to return.
With his foe defeated, Superman stumbles upon a massive tombstone and writes a few words on it. Seconds later, Superman's cosmic robot form is undone and Superman and Ultraman are separated and returned to Limbo, where Superman, Captain Marvel and Overman destroy Mandrakk's army and save Limbo's inhabitants. Meanwhile, Ultraman is found by Rox Ogama, a Monitor exiled for supporting Mandrakk's actions. With his master defeated, Ogama has inherited his vampiric energies and become the new Mandrakk, transforming Ultraman into his new vampire Superman. Mandrakk plans a dark revenge against Superman.
Meanwhile, Clark has returned to his world and time moves forward. The Monitors believed themselves to be the only ones capable of containing the Bleed, but they were wrong. Superman has contained the Bleed within his own body and delivers it to Lois with a kiss. In a few moments, Lois awakens and embraces his husband. She remembers Superman's adventure as a fantastic dream, one she intends to write and share with the entire world. Clark leaves to keep fighting the good fight, but not before telling Lois he cannot wait to hear her story.
The words Superman wrote on the giant tombstone are revealed: "To Be Continued."
Appearing in "To Be Continued"
- Captain Marvel
- Captain Atom
- Book of Limbo
- Echo of Midnight
- Cover gallery for the Final Crisis: Superman Beyond series
- Images from Final Crisis: Superman Beyond Vol 1 2
Links and References
|Final Crisis Crossover |