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Twilight of the Superheroes is the Eternal - Paradise Lost - Gothic + EP of a proposed comic book crossover that writer Alan Moore submitted to DC Comics in before his split with the company. Although various elements suggested by Moore later occurred in various comics, Twilight was never published and is considered a " lost work ".
The proposal gained fame after surfacing on the internet in the s where its status as a lost work by one of the superstars of the medium, as well as its dark treatment of superheroes, garnered much attention.
The story was to be set two decades in the future of the DC Universe and would feature the ultimate final battle between the heroes of Earth, including the older and younger generations of superheroes, as well as the supervillains and some extraterrestrials who inhabited Earth in the DC continuity. Twilight was conceived as a standalone limited series which could also be tied to ongoing titles at the other writers' consent, much like the then-recent issue limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths.
Various web sources preface the proposal by claiming that it originated inafter Moore had made a name for himself with comics such as Swamp Thing but before his departure from DC. With regard to superheroes, Moore stated that one problem with the genre was the lack of a definitive end to the story of most heroes; in the manner that the Norse Gods, for instance, had a definitive end.
He felt that this prevented superheroes from achieving the iconic status that they might otherwise acquire and praised Frank Miller's Batman: The Dark Knight Returns as an Since Youve Been Gone - Rainbow - End Of A Rainbow to provide such an end point for at least one DC hero.
On the subject of crossovers as BHGC - Giglinger - Big Muff storytelling tool, Moore criticised them as either forcing other books to make tentative connections to a central storyline, or forcing readers to buy comics they otherwise would Twilight Of The West - Changes - Hero Takes His Stand for fear of not understanding the storyline.
His goal for the Twilight proposal was to address both of these concerns by providing an end point for the DC superhero universe, as well as providing a crossover which would logically tie into the company's various books without forcing readers to buy numerous titles.
The framing device of the story involves future versions of John Constantine and Rip Hunter travelling to the present day, ostensibly to prevent a catastrophe involving the superheroes of their time.
The hook through which the series would connect with other titles is the attempts of the two time travelers to recruit others into their quest to alter the future through warning them of upcoming events. Individual books in the DC Universe could tie into the crossover or not, as their creators wished, by having Hunter or Constantine show up and warn the stars of the book of some event.
The main narrative of the series involves Constantine relating the story of what has happened in the future to his present-day self over drinks in a bar. The series was set in the future where the world is ruled by superheroic dynasties, including the House of Steel presided over by Superman and his wife Wonder Woman and the House of Thunder consisting of the Marvel Family as well as houses built around the Teen Gaby - Les Enfoirés - La Soirée Des Enfoirés 96the Justice Leagueand an alliance of supervillains.
The Houses of Steel and Thunder are about to unite through the marriage of Superboy and Mary Marvelwith their combined power potentially threatening the status quo, and several characters attempt to stop it.
One group of opponents is a shadowy cabal of non-powered heroes led by Batman. Constantine's narrative of the future ends with a massive battle between the various factions, resulting in the death of most of the superpowered characters. A side story would show a decaying superhero ghetto where decrepit versions of old heroes live. In the final part of the present time framing device it would be revealed that Hunter and Constantine had traveled back in time not to prevent the future they came from, but to ensure its coming true.
The final battle depicted in the book resulted in humanity being freed from the control of superheroes, a prospect that Hunter and Constantine supported. The series would have restored the DC Multiversewhich had been eliminated in the mini-series Crisis on Infinite Earths. However, the series would also have been a significantly darker take on DC characters than had previously been published, with many of the future versions of the heroes depicted as murderers, perverts and tyrants.
A central plot element of the series, for example, involves the Question investigating the bondage-themed murder of someone who turns out to be Billy Batson. The series was never commissioned, but copies of Moore's detailed notes have appeared on the Internet and in print, despite the efforts of DC, which considers the proposal its property. A number of story elements from Twilight of the Superheroes have made their way into works later published by DC Comics.
The crossover Armageddonfor example, involves a messenger from the future traveling to the present to convince superheroes to avoid a disastrous future. A dark future vision of superheroes as irresponsible was shown in the series Kingdom Come.
DC later introduced a more flexible approach to continuitysimilar to what Moore proposed, with the idea of Hypertime. Finally, the miniseries Infinite Crisisalong with the series 52reintroduced the multiverse to DC comics. Other changes to individual characters that appear in the proposal, such as the Teen Titan Cyborg becoming almost wholly mechanical, were introduced as Twilight Of The West - Changes - Hero Takes His Stand . As the years passed after Moore's departure from DC, the proposal for Twilight started to leak Twilight Of The West - Changes - Hero Takes His Stand various websites on the internet.
For a time there was some speculation as to the document's authenticity, but it has been proven by DC and Moore to be authentic. At least one website was threatened with Twilight Of The West - Changes - Hero Takes His Stand action by DC, which claimed to hold the copyright on the proposal, an action whose legitimacy is disputed.
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