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52, Vol. 1 (52 #1; issues 1-13)

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3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  3,521 ratings  ·  131 reviews
After the events rendered in Infinite Crisis, the inhabitants of the DC Universe suffered through a year (52 weeks; hence the title) without Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. How does one survive in a dangerous world without superheroes? This paperback, the first of a four-volume series, begins to answer that perilous question? Nonstop action amid planetary anarchy.
Paperback, 304 pages
Published May 2nd 2007 by DC Comics (first published 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dirk Grobbelaar
I first read 52 some years back, but for some reason never rated it on Goodreads.
I’m rereading the series (volumes 1 through 4) as part of my 2014 graphic novel / superhero binge.

In a nutshell: after the events of Infinite Crisis Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and Flash (amongst others) are missing, and Earth and the superhero community are in a shambles.
The 52 series represents a week-by-week review of a year in the (somewhat unbalanced at this stage) DC Universe before things return to “norma...more
StoryTellerShannon
THE SERIES

This tale follows a “missing year” in the DC Universe after the groundbreaking “Infinite Crisis” story (see my review for that one) which was one of the bestselling graphic novels for the 2006 year. Note that "Final Crisis" follows after this and was published in 2009.

52 asks the questions who takes the role of the most popular superheroes (Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman) when they step down from their roles? There are a list of vying superheroes trying to make a name for themselve...more
Sesana
Right after Infinite Crisis wrapped up, the regular DC books apparently skipped forward a year. 52, published at the same time, told the story of that missing year in 52 issues, published once a week yearly. I'm not sure what I expected out of it, but I didn't expect it to be very good. That's a pretty grueling schedule to keep up for an entire year. And what do you know, it is pretty good.

Because they were smart when they started. 52 worked on a team approach, with a team of writers and a team...more
Tyler
I guess I am alone on thinking that this series was near perfect. This review is going to encompass all of the volumes because I only have the back issues.


Look, this is a series primarily for smaller characters. I guess that's too mainstream now or something because people keep hating on it. Yes, it has bigger characters in it, too. This was the little guys time to shine.. and they deliver.

There are multiple stories running at once. The ones that come to mind immediately are:

Black Adam
The Quest...more
Joe_Calabrese
Until I saw the (amazing) film WATCHMEN, I had never really been much of a superhero fan. Sure, I watched the movies and cartoon shows, but I never really read any comics. After picking up the original graphic novel, I realized what I was missing out on; the world of the DC Universe is a beautiful, exciting, amazing place, and 52 does a wonderful job of portraying that.

Picking up directly after the events of Infinite Crisis, 52 shows us a world without Earth's three greatest heroes: Superman, Ba...more
Mike
With so many good writers on this book, I almost can't tell where a hack like Waid's writing comes in. This is overall a good concept and a good read, and even where the story seems to jump around a little too much like it was edited by an epileptic, it's also enjoyable to keep seeing the subplots moving forward at a brisk pace.

I can't imagine how gruelling it must've been to try to keep this project on schedule. For that feat of coordination and endurance alone I admire this book, and the writi...more
[Name Redacted]
The comic version of Renee Montoya is younger, less-competent, more abrasive, sexier and more scantily-clad than the original. Also she's a lesbian. Obviously. Because strong, independent women have to be lesbians. And have chips on their shoulders. And somehow exist in that mythical world fiction insists upon pretending exists, where every lesbian looks like a Victoria's Secret model.
Michael (Tattoogirl Reads)
I started really reading American comics after DC had already moved into the New 52. From there I had a starting point. Many people told me that I needed to read the other, “better” stuff. The original52 is something that has been recommended to me more than once.

52 tells the story of what happens in the DC Universe after Infinite Crisis. Um, noob here, right? I don’t know what happens in Infinite Crisis except that all the heroes disappear. I know that because it’s easy enough to figure that ou...more
John Yelverton
One of the best books to come from DC in years.
Jbainnz
I'm still in shock about how truly amazing this is. This book right here is hands down some of the most addictive shit I have ever laid eyes on.

Carrying straight off from the Infinite Crisis event we see a world rebuilding. Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman are taking a break from being heroes and left the worlds safety in everyone else's hands. This is why this series is so good, we get to see smaller characters shine. The story moves like a TV series, going from plot line to plot line. The ch...more
Doreen
So my review of this book is colored by the fact that my comic-collecting heyday was in the decade between 1992-2002. One crossover too many was what ultimately killed off my interest in collecting multiple titles, and these days it is extremely rare for me to buy a single issue of anything. It's cheaper and more convenient to buy trades, especially with the lack of specialty comic stores in my immediate area, and with comic book companies no longer offering subscriptions by post to individual t...more
Rebecca
I read this at Borders this afternoon with my roommate Bikki. I loved the concept of 52 (a weekly series unfolding in "real time," chronicling the lost year when Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman inexplicably disappeared) when I first heard about it. After the series run, the books were bound into four volumes with writers' commentary, script excerpts, and panel breakdowns following each chapter.

There are about six or seven major storylines in 52 and a daunting number of characters (practically...more
Jake
I read this series two or three years ago, and I never thought I'd read it again. Not because it was bad (it wasn't), but because it a lot to commit to and I'm lazy.

But I recently decided that I wanted to reread everything I have from Green Lantern: Rebirth to the present, so yeah.

The first of four volumes, each with thirteen issues. There is a LOT to wrap your head around in this series. There are so many storylines going on at the same time (I think I counted eight), a lot of characters to kee...more
Harold Ogle
I found this an interesting read, particularly as I'd just read "The Dark Knight Strikes Again" just before it, because both books provide interesting alternative takes on popular DC heroes, including Superman, Batman, Green Arrow, Elongated Man, and so on. In this one, four esteemed comics writers (Grant Morrison, Greg Rucka, Mark Waid and Geoff Johns) collaborated on a year's worth of weekly comics (one reason for the title "52") telling the story of the DC universe's recovery from first "Cris...more
Dean
Finally got round to reading this collection of interweaving tales of the 'lost year' in DC history, when Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman ( or The Big Three) have taken a sabbatical, both voluntary and enforced. Clark Kent does pop up though. The focus shifts to lesser lights like Booster Gold, Black Adam, the Question, Steel etc.
as is the way with both a compilation style of storytelling, and writing by committee ( the stories are scripted by 4 different writers who script individual scenes...more
Lloyd
A year without Superman, Batman, or Wonder Woman... "But it was not a world without heroes,” the preface says.

52 was a year long weekly series that explored this premise. Superstar writers Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison, Greg Rucka, and Mark Waid teamed with a ridiculous number of severely talented artists to pull this off. This volume contains the first 13 weeks of the event.

With DC's "Trinity" out of the picture we see different heroes take the limelight. They may not be the ones you were expecti...more
Federiken Masters
Apr 19, 2013 Federiken Masters rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Veremos...
Recommended to Federiken by: Rhockman
Las pocas veces que arranqué esta serie la largué por paja y porque no tenía ningún número. Ahora que Paliman me regaló este tomazo con los primeros 13 capítulos, finalmente no la colgué como un pelotudo oootra vez. Hasta ahora, me vienen gustando todas las sub-tramas de la serie, sobre todo la de Question y Renee, pero el resto también están muy bien. Ya me explayaré.
¡Grande, Pablín! :D
Robert Morganbesser
This will be the same review for all four volumes. First, while I liked seeing some of the lesser known DC heroes and villains get highlighted, since this led to the New 52, which as an older fan, has left me behind, I'm unhappy with it. They killed off a few too many of the newer heroes (I'd have liked to see Isis survive, and since Superman died and the world got on for a year, we already know what a world without Superman would be like). I found the harsh treatment of Diana, who killed Max Lo...more
Andy
Jul 05, 2014 Andy rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2014
This review covers the four volumes of 52.

The characters available to fill in when Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman are missing are not ones I care about, apparently. It seemed that there are much more interesting characters that we could have been reading about, instead of the C-String bunch that we got to follow instead. Really, I hadn't heard of many of these characters and wasn't sure why I should care about any of them. The outer space portion had a ridiculous villain / anti-hero character...more
Shannon Appelcline
Remember when DC comics were still good? They're right here in this collection.

It's a complex interweaving of stories from four top writers with characters that cover a span of decades —including ones from the Charlton, Fawcett, and DC universes. My favorite storyline is Montoya and the Question, because Rucka is the man, and he does a great job of creating a storyline about real characters going through tough times. Waid's Elastic Man story is a clear second best. But, everything in here is in...more
Benjamin Featherston
Collected here are the first 13 issues of DC's ambitious "52" project, which tells the story of a "lost year" in the DC universe, during which the Big Three (Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman) are missing, in real time with one issue released to the public each week. These four volumes might seem a tough sell for most casual comics readers, given that the focus is on lesser-known characters in the DC universe, but the result is an engaging, and surprisingly addictive, read.

Instead of a core st...more
Tamahome
I enjoyed this series written by 4 writers, coming out every week, more than other 'events' like Civil War. Lots of different artists though, quality was inconsistent.
Ruth
Jul 12, 2011 Ruth rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: comics
Wonderful follow-up for Infinite Crisis. Can't wait to read the next set of issues.
Michael
SOMETHING DIFFERENT FROM DC

THOUGHTS:
Take out Superman, Batman, & Wonderwoman and what would the DC Universe be like? This book answers this question. Teaming up Grant Morrison with Geoff Johns, the odds are the story's going to be something very original and well executed and this comes across in this book. It seems the writers are really enjoying the process of writing for this one. They can't fall back on tent-pole characters to save the day and have to flesh out often under-appreciated ch...more
Kelsey Jacobs
My main interest in reading this series was that it was a definite continuation of the Renee Montoya character post-Gotham Central, written by Greg Rucka. Coming out of this book, I can say that she, the Question, and Booster Gold are the main highlights for me. Also, the part where Clark jumps out of a window as bait, that was pretty fantastic as well.

I like the Elongated Man, I like Steel, and Black Adam is okay, but they're not my main interest. However, that was quite the cliffhanger, and I...more
Indika De Silva
This series reminds me of a great TV series. Takes a while to sink in and once that happens there is nothing to keep it's reader back.

The writers of the series has played around with a vast array of characters found in the DC universe except its regular superheroes namely Superman, Batman, Wonder woman and Flash. The story follows several separate stories and hope that all will be interconnected somewhere in the future.

The graphics are easy on the eyes. Storyline is quite compelling. Have all 4...more
Gayle Francis Moffet
A strong opening to the whole she-bang, it feels (I've never read it), but boy, were they determined to break the cutie that is Ralph Dibny.

The storylines are interesting. The character interactions are engaging, and the writing is coherent and feels very thought out. While Johns, Rucka, Waid, and Morrison all share credit on the book, it's pretty clear Rucka was knocking it out of the park with Renee Montoya as usual. I can't say for certain where the other guys were working, and I mean that a...more
Nick
DC attempted something that had never been done before with 52. A weekly comic from four of the premiere writers in the business, juggling B-list characters while Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman took the year off. Re-read that pitch and try to imagine yourself in the war room, begging your publisher to sign off on this idea. That's a monumental undertaking without even bringing into question the art, broken down each week by the incomparable Keith Giffen. Reading 52 in issue form was a bit jar...more
Kirk Kiefer
As far as DC Comics go, I'm mainly a Batman guy. I know next to nothing about the rest of the DC Universe beyond the basics like Clark Kent is Superman, Hal Jordan is Green Latern, etc. I know nothing about minor characters.

Thus, going into 52 I expected to be somewhat lost or unable to get into the story. I mostly picked it up because I found all four volumes for cheap and I was curious about Batwoman's first appearances.

That all said, I tore through Vol. 1 of the series. I had no few problems...more
Hrishi
"52" is a DC event comprising weekly issues released over a year, In the wake of the Infinite Crisis, the trinity of the DC Universe - Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman - are at least temporarily missing/ retired, but life carries on nonetheless. All the major titles underwent reboots or in general skipped a year in 2006/ 07 under the "One Year Later" brand, while 52 filled in the missing year.

The first thing that impresses about this first quarter of the event is how ambitious the scale of the...more
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Geoff Johns originally hails from Detroit, Michigan. He attended Michigan State University, where he earned a degree in Media Arts and Film. He moved to Los Angeles in the late 1990’s in search of work within the film industry. Through perseverance, Geoff ended up as the assistant to Richard Donner, working on Conspiracy Theory and Lethal Weapon 4. During that time, he also began his comics career...more
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