Apokolips
Apokolips.jpg
First appearanceThe New Gods #1 (February 1971)
Race(s)New Gods
Parademons
Dreggs
CharactersDarkseid
Granny Goodness
DeSaad
Kalibak
Steppenwolf
Devilance
Kanto
Virman Vundabar
Grayven
Female Furies
Deep Six
Parademons
PublisherDC Comics

Apokolips is a fictional planet that appears in American comic books published by DC Comics. The planet is ruled by Darkseid, established in Jack Kirby's Fourth World series, and is integral to many stories in the DC Universe. Apokolips is considered the opposite of the planet New Genesis.[1]

Apokolips is a large planet covered entirely by a city (an ecumenopolis). It is a notoriously dismal place, where the slavish Hunger Dogs (low-class citizens) labor endlessly to feed the Energy Pits which supply light and power to the world.[2] Both Apokolips and New Genesis exist in a different plane of existence from the regular DC Universe,[3] located near the Source that originated the Old and New Gods.[4]

Apokolips represents a failed society. As Jack Misselhorn writes: "No one on Apokolips evolves spiritually because there is no love. It is a stagnant society, its inhabitants living in ignorance, the legacy of oppression".[5]

Accessing either Apokolips or New Genesis usually requires a form of travel known as a "Boom Tube", a portal generated by a device known as a Mother Box. In some versions, the boom tube actually converts the size of individuals that pass through to proportions fitting the destination, i.e., when a New God passes from Apokolips (or New Genesis) to Earth, they shrink in size, while someone going the other way would grow larger. If someone somehow reaches the Fourth World by other means, they will discover that its denizens are giants.[6]

Fictional history

Apokolips and its bright counterpart New Genesis were spawned by the destruction of Urgrund, the world of the "Old Gods" (implied to be the gods of Norse mythology). While New Genesis was given strength and nobility from the "living atoms" of the Old God Balduur, Apokolips was saturated with evil from an unnamed sorceress.[7] The two planets are locked in an eternal war, symbolizing the struggle of evil and good on a grand mythic scale. Apokolips is ruled by a fell being known as Darkseid, a dark leader who rules over his downtrodden people by force and fear. Apokolips appears to be a high-tech industrial ecumenopolis.

Seven Soldiers

Main article: Seven Soldiers

Both Apokolips and New Genesis were seemingly destroyed in a final battle prior to Grant Morrison's miniseries Seven Soldiers: Mister Miracle. However, the final issue of that series implied that the story's earlier events were merely visions seen by the hero as part of an elaborate test by the New God Metron. How much of the battle really happened and the current status of the New Gods remains to be seen.

Countdown to Final Crisis

Main article: Countdown to Final Crisis

Using Boom Tube technology, Brother Eye arrives on Apokolips and seemingly assimilates the entire planet. Before the assimilation is fully complete, the Pied Piper intervenes and channels the Anti-Life Equation through his flute. This destroys much of Brother Eye, causing its central core to make a last-minute escape off the surface of the planet and reverting much of Apokolips to what it was.

Death of the New Gods

Main article: Death of the New Gods

At the end of the Death of the New Gods miniseries, with all the gods now dead, the combined entity born from the melding of the Source and the Anti-Life Equation merges Apokolips and New Genesis into a single new planet with characteristics in common with both the former worlds.

The Great Darkness Saga

Main article: The Great Darkness Saga

In the 30th century, original Legion of Super-Heroes continuity, Apokolips is inactive and Darkseid incapacitated. In the reboot Legion continuity, Darkseid was aged and dying, with the planet mostly uninhabited, but the center of a large cult.

The New 52: Earth-0 and Earth-2

In DC continuity following its 2011 Flashpoint event and the launch of its New 52 line of comics, the DC Multiverse remains composed of 52 worlds, but only one set of New Gods. Darkseid and his army from Apokolips has attempted to invade Earth-0, or Prime Earth, but is repelled by the first incarnation of the Justice League. At the same time, his armies invaded the alternate Earth of Earth-2 under the aegis of Steppenwolf, which was much more successful.

The invasion of Earth-2 cost the lives of that universe's original Superman, Batman, Catwoman, Wonder Woman and millions of humans, including Earth-2's Lois Lane, married to Superman on that world. The Apokoliptan forces have assistance from Fury (Earth-2 Wonder Woman's abducted and brainwashed daughter), with all her mother's Amazonian abilities. Five years on, a number of new "wonders" begin to emerge: Green Lantern (Alan Scott), the Atom, Hawkgirl, Doctor Fate, the Red Tornado (an android with Lois Lane's consciousness) and the Flash form an embryonic Justice Society to deal with threats such as Solomon Grundy. Before long, the armies of Apokolips attempt a second invasion of Earth 2, and the Wonders of the World are supported by further heroes includes Batman (Thomas Wayne), a new Superman (Val-Zod), the Huntress (Helena Wayne), Power Girl, Aquawoman (Marella), the Accountable (Jimmy Olsen), the New God Mister Miracle, and Earth 0's Mister Terrific.

Agents of Darkseid, such as Glorious Godfrey and Kalibak (in Batman & Robin) and the Apokoliptian Orion (in Wonder Woman), have encountered the heroes of Earth-0 on several occasions, but no full-scale invasions have taken place. Later, in the series Earth 2: Worlds' End, Mister Miracle discovers that Highfather made a deal with Darkseid that the armies of Apokolips could invade Earth-2 and that dimension freely without the intervention of the New Gods of New Genesis, explaining the wild disparity between the fates of Earth-0 and Earth-2. Ultimately, Apokolips itself enters Earth-2's Solar System and consumes Earth-2, transforming the planet into fuel to sustain itself.

DC Rebirth

When Perpetua destroys the Source Wall, one of the side effects is that Apokolips simply vanishes.[8] With Apokolips gone, Darkseid plans to use the Ghost Sector to create a New Apokolips which he will use to invade and conquer the Multiverse.[9]

Inhabitants

See also: List of New Gods

The population is a downtrodden lot, including many kidnapped from other worlds before being "broken". The majority of the population are called Lowlies or Hunger Dogs, a bald and fearful race that has no sense of self-worth or value, and yet, in their own way, are just as much gods as those who rule the planet.[10] The Lowlies are subject to constant abuse that ends only with death. Next are the Parademons, who serve as the keepers of order on the planet.[11] Higher above the Parademons are the Female Furies, who are Darkseid's personal guard. They are blessed with unnatural strength and longevity and are either trained for their position in the Furies from birth, or are promoted from the ranks of general Apokoliptian troops. The leaders of the Furies are Granny Goodness, who sports the appearance of a matronly old woman while being the most powerful of the guards, and Kanto, who enjoys a unique position as Darkseid's master assassin.[12] The chief guard, Big Barda, had a third position under Granny which has not been filled since her defection from the group. Deep below Armagetto, the lifeless forms of the Old Gods live on. They are known as the Dreggs.

Apokolips is ruled by Darkseid as its theocratic god/despot, but he delegates most of the actual day-to-day ruling to his counsellor DeSaad. Darkseid has no real contenders for the throne of Apokolips except the bug-like Mantis, although his sons Orion, Grayven and Kalibak are also potential contenders. Darkseid is cursed with Grayven and Kalibak's stupidity and Orion's service in the name of good. Orion once usurped the throne of Apokolips from his father temporarily, until coming to his senses and returning to New Genesis. It is prophesied that Orion will overthrow Darkseid. In Kingdom Come, it is revealed that Darkseid's overthrow will not result in major changes on Apokolips, as Apokolips' evil comes from evil itself rather than from Darkseid.

Geography

There are different locations on Apokolips, a ecumenopolis (a world-city) with burning firepits, extant in between dimensions, occupying a ‘frequency’ somewhere between the physical universe and Hell:

Technology

Apokolips is on par with New Genesis in terms of technological advancement. With their technology, they are the height of power in most of the universe and are able to devastate galaxies when they choose to use it. Technology from Apokolips is sometimes on par with the technology used by Brainiac. Apokoliptian technology is furthermore the source of unparalleled misery in the universe, as the planet routinely arms evil groups with advanced technology in order to further its influence (and misery) across the universe. Apokoliptian technology was used by Bruno "Ugly" Mannheim and his organization Intergang in the Superman comics. It was a deal between Darkseid and Metron which was the cause of the invention of the "Boom Tube" using "Element X", which could only be found on Apokolips. The "Entropy Aegis" armor, used by Steel to defeat Imperiex, was Apokoliptian technology, as was Dmitri Pushkin's second suit of Rocket Red armor.

Other versions

Darkseid/Galactus: The Hunger

During an intercompany crossover, Galactus visited Apokolips, but was unable to feed on the planet, since all of the life force that had dwelled there had either left to New Genesis or had been burned in the fire pits long ago, in essence leaving the planet with no lifeforce and making it too corrupt for him to feed on.

In other media

Television

Film

Video games

References

  1. ^ Byrne, John (w), Byrne, John (p), Austin, Terry (i). "Legends from the Darkside" Superman v2, 3: 11-12 (March, 1987), DC Comics
  2. ^ Who's Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe Volume I (March 1985)
  3. ^ The Multiversity Guidebook #1 (March 2015)
  4. ^ Jack Kirby's Fourth World #1 (March 1997)
  5. ^ Misselhorn, Jack (Spring 2017). "Love of Anti?-Life". The Jack Kirby Collector. 24 (71): 30. Retrieved 3 September 2020.
  6. ^ The size difference varies; Supergirl found herself confronted with Apokoliptians the size of skyscrapers, while Superman found that entire planets from his universe fitted in his hand while on Apokolips.
  7. ^ Who's Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe Volume I (March 1985)
  8. ^ Justice League Annual (vol. 4) #1
  9. ^ Justice League Odyssey Vol. 1
  10. ^ Byrne, John (w), Byrne, John (p), Austin, Terry (i). "Legends from the Darkside" Superman v2, #3: 10-11 (March 1987), DC Comics
  11. ^ Byrne, John (w), Byrne, John (p), Austin, Terry (i). "Legends from the Darkside" Superman v2, #3: 13 (March 1987), DC Comics
  12. ^ Wechsler-Chaput, Elayne (2004). "Hell Hath No Furies... A Primer to the World of the Female Furies". In Morrow, John (ed.). The Collected Jack Kirby Collector Volume 1. TwoMorrows Publishing. pp. 110–111. ISBN 9781893905009. Retrieved 3 September 2020.
  13. ^ New Gods (vol. 4) #4. DC Comics.
  14. ^ Real Life Heroes Life Storybook, 3rd Edition. 2016-11-25. doi:10.4324/9780203423560. ISBN 9780203123560.