For months now, former President Lex Luthor has been using his resources to assemble an army against the superheroes. Luthor's team now has over two hundred members with a six-member core team consisting of Luthor, Talia al Ghul, Villains United was a 2005 event, written by Gail Simone with art by Dale Eaglesham, mostly told in its own miniseries. As Lex Luthor forms the world's villains into the The Secret Society of Super-Villains, a new Mockingbird sets up the The Secret Six to counter them.
For months now, former President Lex Luthor has been using his resources to assemble an army against the superheroes. Luthor's team now has over two hundred members with a six-member core team consisting of Luthor, Talia al Ghul, Doctor Psycho, Deathstroke, Black Adam, and the Calculator.
But not all the villains offered a chance to join this army are thrilled with the idea. Batman villain Catman has joined a team of five supported by the mysterious Mockingbird including Cheshire, Deadshot, Scandal, Ragdoll, and Parademon to oppose this new Secret Society. Catman replaced the first Fiddler, after he was killed by Deadshot on Mockingbird's orders when Mockingbird felt he had not fulfilled his part in a mission.
Late one night in the mansion of the Secret Six, Catman and Deadshot have a discussion about their unknown leader, Mockingbird and the dramatic change in Catman's life, while Cheshire secretly listens in the shadows. After a short while Scandal informs everyone that Mockingbird has just assigned them to steal Thanagarian weaponry from a tanker in Gotham harbor.
Upon their arrival to the tanker, they are ambushed by members of the Society. After their capture, the Crime Doctor tortures the Secret Six, asking them the identity of Mockingbird among other questions. After a few rounds of torture, Catman breaks free and rescues his villainous teammates. While escaping they decide to send the Society a message. They murder one of the two Hyena.
After their escape the Six infiltrate a Society installation in Brazil. After fighting their way through a legion of H.I.V.E. troopers, apparently led by the Queen Bee, they discover the Society's plans for the 'Vindication Scenario' - erasing the memories of all of Earth's superheroes. The facility is a giant battery, powered by a duo of kidnap victims, Firestorm and Gehenna. They release Firestorm just as Black Adam arrives with a response team and the facility is destroyed.
Once the Six return to their base Cheshire and Catman are in bed together when Cheshire accuses Catman of being a spy and wanting to be a hero. However, she reveals that she has slept with him in order to conceive a child.
A short time later, most of the Society's founding council votes to mount a final strike on the Secret Six — Lex Luthor disagrees with a preemptive attack, but the remaining four members (Black Adam is notably absent) decide the action is necessary. Simultaneously, the Six agree to a last stand, but only under the condition that any survivors be set free from Mockingbird's control with no strings attached.
Prior to the battle between the Society and the Six, Deadshot visits Scandal's room to talk about the team's future. A framed picture on her desk reveals that her father is the immortal Vandal Savage.
Before the conversation can progress past basic greetings, Catman ambushes Deadshot and revealing that he knows that the latter had masqueraded as the villainous Deathstroke and murdered the lions in his pride. The two scuffle before discovering that the real Deathstroke has lead a small band of villains to the front door of the House of Secrets.
As they debate how the Society found them, Cheshire confesses to several traitorous deeds, including having given Luthor the coordinates of the Six's base and covertly joining the Society. When asked why she would do such a thing, given Mockingbird's threat to kill her daughter if she didn't comply, Cheshire points out that the baby she's just conceived with Catman will make a fine replacement for the lost child.
The Society storms through the castle, and Cheshire is shot by Deathstroke, who comments that "The Society doesn't need traitors." The Secret Six, however, fight back successfully. Talia and Scandal, daughters of immortals fight, and just when Talia has the upper hand, Scandal's mole in the Society, Knockout, knocks her out (it is also revealed that Knockout is Scandal's lover). Ragdoll convinces Solomon Grundy, a fellow "ugly monster," to switch sides. Ragdoll fights his father until Parademon beats the elder Ragdoll. Catman and Ragdoll Jr. escape from Black Adam's group while Parademon blows himself and his surroundings up. Deathstroke and Deadshot duel, ultimately shooting each other at the same time. To save his daughter Scandal, Vandal Savage infiltrates the Society's headquarters and threatens to kill Luthor if he does not disengage the attack against the Six. Reluctantly, and over Black Adam's objections, Luthor ends the battle. Deadshot is led to medical help by the surviving members of the Secret Six.
The central revelation of the book is that Mockingbird is actually Lex Luthor and that the Luthor who organized the Secret Society is an "imposter" (later revealed to be the Alexander Luthor of Earth Three). Mockingbird/Luthor reveals that he chose those six individuals because each had different knowledge and experience that could be used to oppose the Society: Catman, for his knowledge of Batman's villains; Deadshot, for his knowledge on the remaining Suicide Squad members; Parademon, for his experience living on Apokolips; Ragdoll, because he grew up as a "nephew" to the members of the Injustice Society; Scandal, because she grew up with Vandal Savage and his associates; and Cheshire, for her knowledge of the villains of the Teen Titans. Mockingbird/Luthor reveals to Scandal that he never placed the families of the Six in danger and disbands the team. Also notable is the Impostor Luthor's apparent murder of Pariah, a key player in the original Crisis.
Villains United Special: A Hero Dies but One
Main article: Battle of Metropolis
In the Villains United: Infinite Crisis Special, the Secret Six meet to discuss their future as a team, with Deadshot recommending they be a mercenary team for good or evil, "as long as we get paid."
In phase one of a master plan, the Society executes "Operation: Hope Abandoned," engineering breakouts at metahuman holding facilities worldwide. Oracle amasses responses as fast as possible, but with the "Big Guns" of the JLA unavailable, the heroes are having problems holding the line. With the help of the Martian Manhunter, Oracle organizes a global telepathic link.
Meanwhile, the Secret Six intercept the Scarecrow and Amos Fortune fleeing Enclave M, and discover that all supervillains, once freed, are to head to Metropolis. They relay this information to Green Arrow, who relays the information through the telepathic link. Lady Blackhawk commandeers aircraft to traffic all available heroes and national guardsmen to Metropolis.
An army of second-stringers, vigilantes, and retired metas align with the authorities to fend off the Society's assault. Leading the villains' charge is Doctor Psycho, flanked by the monster he and "Monsieur" Warp unleashed from imprisonment: Doomsday.
High above the battle, Catman informs the rest of the Six they are to remain neutral, even after the battle. The Six leave, determined to be an independent group, while the battle continues
Issues involved in the story include:
- Villains United #1
- Villains United #2
- Villains United #3
- Villains United #4
- Villains United #5
- Villains United #6
- Infinite Crisis Special: Villains United #1
- Superman (Volume 2) #221
- Nightwing (Volume 2) #109
- Nightwing (Volume 2) #110
- Nightwing (Volume 2) #111
- Nightwing (Volume 2) #112
- Breach #7
- Catwoman (Volume 3) #46
- Catwoman (Volume 3) #47
- Catwoman (Volume 3) #48
- Catwoman (Volume 3) #49
- Firestorm (Volume 3) #17
- Batman: Gotham Knights #66
- Green Arrow (Volume 3) #50
- The Flash (Volume 2) #225
- Action Comics #830
- Action Comics #831
Links and References
The events from this issue or series are related to Infinite Crisis, and/or any of its surrounding events, including Villains United, the OMAC Project, Rann-Thanagar War and Day of Vengeance. This template will automatically categorize articles that include it into the Infinite Crisis crossovers category.