DC comics… Year of the Villain!

DC Comics

Eagle eyed fans, or anyone who reads more than one DC comic this week, will notice that most DC comics released this week will end the same way. After the main story wraps, a small black beetle like object travels around locating various villains.  Once it has located the baddie, a hooded hologram of a wraith Lex Luthor appears and gives the villain something to entice them. In most cases, we never see what the item is or know why Lex looks the way he does, but in every comic this scenario plays out; Beetle searches, locates villain, Holo-Lex appears and offers present.

DC Comics

Locating Villians in DC Comics

In Batman and The Outsiders #3, Les makes a mysterious offer to Ra’s al Ghul

Then, in Catwoman #13, Lex appears to Selina Kyle.

For Hawkman  #14, the Shadow Thief receives the promise of tech that will enhance his powers to control all shadows.

Red Hood Outlaw #36 sees Lex offering The Red Hood a chance to teach a new generation of… villians?

A spidery version of Brainiac is offered freedom over his green skinned master in Supergirl #32.

And finally, and most surprisingly, At the end of Superman #13, Les is seen offering something unknown to… Lois Lane.

So what the Blue Beetle is going on here in these DC Comics?!

Enter the Beetle

These moments herald the beginning of an event called “Year Of The Villain,” where Lex, named “Apex Lex”, seemingly returns from the dead to use all his wealth and knowledge to enhance, enrich, and equip all the villains of the DC universe with enough power to crush their arch-rivals.

All of this started in the 25cent “Year of the Villain” Prelude comic where Lex seemingly blew himself up, only to return in a organic Bacta-like tank.

Here’s how the arc breaks down over the coming months.

  • July –  Year of the Villain: The Offer
  • August – Year of the Villain: Dark Gifts
  • September – Year of the Villain: Evil Unleashed
  • October – Year of the Villain: Doom Rising

“Luthor’s influence spreads across the DCU with a select number of titles carrying a themed “Year of the Villain” banner featuring a haunting image of a Lex Luthor that’s more than he used to be. In addition, certain July issues will receive special “portrait” variant covers featuring characters to whom “Apex Lex” makes the ultimate offer. These covers will be printed on cardstock with minimal trade dress, presenting the art in a bold, dynamic setting and carry an increased cover price ($1 extra) over the standard version.”

The office DC comics reads:

I’m all in for a Lex (even an “Apex-Lex”) led Legion of doom all out battle. I just hope this plays out as great as it’s begun!