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DC Teased A Crossover With Marvel - And It Could Still Happen

DC Comics has teased a future comic book crossover with Marvel featuring both publishers' greatest heroes, and it still might happen.

DC and Marvel Comics have a shared history of crossing over with each other. From the groundbreaking 1976 crossover "Superman vs. The Amazing Spider-Man" (by Gerry Conway, Ross Andru, Dick Giordano, Gerry Serpe, and Gaspar Saladino), to 1996's fight-filled affair in "DC vs. Marvel" (by Ron Marz, Peter David, Dan Jurgens, Claudio Castellini, Joe Rubinstein, Gregory Wright, and Bill Oakley), to the acclaimed universe-shattering 2000s battle in "JLA/Avengers" (by Kurt Busiek, George Perez, Tom Smith, and Comicraft), there have been several memorable intercompany adventures featuring the most iconic heroes and villains from each universe. 

While readers might be clamoring for more crossovers between Marvel and DC characters and creators, the likelihood of that occurring in the present day is unlikely, with the publishers' longstanding rivalry and competitive nature nixing any potential team-up. However, in the "Doomsday Clock" (by Geoff Johns, Gary Frank, Brad Anderson, and Rob Leigh), the omnipotent Doctor Manhattan's look into the future reveals a new "Secret Crisis" where Superman fights Thor and also hints at an important role for the Hulk.

DC teased a Secret Crisis between worlds

In the "Doomsday Clock" event from DC Comics, the DC Universe and the world of "Watchmen" (by Alan Moore, Dave Gibbons,  and John Higgins) collide. The comic sees the all-powerful Doctor Manhattan rewrite the DC Universe as it stands on the brink of collapse due to the rise of metahumans. 

In "Doomsday Clock" #12, after initially looking into the past, Doctor Manhattan looks into the future and sees many different occurrences: In 2020, Superman's timeline is bombarded by the Old Gods, potentially referring to Superman's encounter with the Old God Olgrun in "Action Comics" (by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Riccardo Federici, Will Conrad, Lee Loughridge, and Dave Sharpe). In 2025, a crisis unlike any other erupts across the Metaverse, with Superman coming out of it revitalized. In 2026, the timeline gets restored and Earth-5G is born, while Superman searches for Bruce Wayne's lost daughter to save his son. Most shockingly, in 2030, a "Secret Crisis" begins with a universe sounding a lot like Marvel's fighting against and alongside DC's.

"On July 10, 2030, the 'Secret Crisis' begins, throwing Superman into a brawl across the universe with Thor himself ... and a Green Behemoth stronger than even Doomsday, who dies protecting Superman from these invaders," the synopsis reads.

While the Marvel Universe isn't named, the comic directly references Thor and hints at the Hulk, with the latter referred to as a "Green Behemoth stronger than ever Doomsday." In the future that Doctor Manhattan sees, the Hulk dies, protecting Superman from the attackers. The namedrop of Thor and the Hulk teases are the only mentions of Marvel heroes in "Doomsday Clock," but they still can set up a potential future crossover. However, there are some obstacles to making it happen.

Why the Secret Crisis may not happen

Even with the complicated logistics of doing a new Marvel and DC story, as decades have passed since their last official crossover in "JLA/Avengers," there is one primary reason to believe it might not happen other than the two publishers simply not playing nice.

First off, it's unlikely that Earth-5G is ever born. 5G, otherwise known as Fifth Generation, was conceived by former DC publisher Dan DiDio, who said in an interview (via CBR) that the new initiative would replace the main heroes in the DC Universe with younger counterparts: "[I]t was a long-term plan featuring a lot of the key, recognizable characters, and a long-term evolution over years that had been thought out," he said. With "Doomsday Clock" unfolding and DiDio still making critical decisions for the publisher, the comic appeared to be a way to soft-launch the initiative. However, after DiDio left DC Comics, 5G was seemingly scrapped entirely.

There are still a lot of variables to making a "Secret Crisis" crossover between DC and Marvel possible. It's not impossible a future intercompany story could happen. There is still time for the future Doctor Manhattan's vision to come true, but the clock is ticking. Still, considering the difficulties of seeing Marvel and DC working together, readers shouldn't expect news anytime soon — even if doing a crossover would excite fans of both publishers and be a welcome addition to both universes.