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Before the real-world events of September 11, 2001, the comic-book pages unleashed their own weapon of mass destruction: Mageddon, debuting in JLA #37 (2000), part of the “World War III” story arc penned by Grant Morrison. Manufactured by the Old Gods of Urgrund, this enormous squid-like creature ignites feelings of extreme anger and hatred in human beings and amplifies the worst and most hostile threats of a planet's population, triggering global conflicts. To speed up its doomsday mission, Mageddon selects ordinary human beings (or superheroes) on a besieged planet to act as “remote senders”: these people manifest a large ectoplasmic eyeball around their upper body to report to the central Mageddon unit. If attacked, senders shoot enormous blasts of energy. Many a villain—including Lex Luthor—fell prey to the influence of Mageddon's probes. When Mageddon escaped the gravity sink that imprisoned it for 15 billion years, it targeted Earth, setting off random military attacks that resembled the dawn of World War III. Although heroes such as Metron and Orion of the New Gods and members of the Justice League of America tried to stop Mageddon, only Superman was able to thwart its destructive devices when he traveled to the heart of the entity and absorbed the anti-sunlight that empowered it. Mageddon is known by many names, including the Ultimate Warbringer, the Anti-Sun, the Primordial Annihilator, and Tezcatlipoca.
The Supervillain Book: The Evil Side of Comics and Hollywood © 2006 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.