Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths

Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths
Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths

Two-Disc Special Edition DVD cover art
Directed by Lauren Montgomery
Sam Liu
Produced by Bruce Timm
Bobbie Page
Alan Burnett
Sam Register
Written by Dwayne McDuffie
Starring William Baldwin
Mark Harmon
Chris Noth
Gina Torres
James Woods
Bruce Davison
Josh Keaton
Music by James L. Venable
Christopher Drake
Studio Warner Bros. Animation
Warner Premiere
DC Comics
Distributed by Warner Home Video
Release date(s) February 23, 2010 (2010-02-23)
Running time 75 minutes
Language English
Box office $5,204,658[1]

Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths is a 2010 original direct-to-video animated film released on February 23, 2010. It is based on the abandoned direct-to-video feature, Justice League: Worlds Collide, which was intended as a bridge between the then-concluding Justice League animated television series and its then forthcoming sequel series Justice League Unlimited. The movie project was shelved because of insufficient staff to produce the movie and the TV show simultaneously. Crisis on Two Earths was reworked from the Worlds Collide script to remove references to the TV series' continuity.

The premise of Crisis on Two Earths is borrowed from the 1964 Gardner Fox-scripted Justice League of America #29–30 entitled "Crisis on Earth-Three!" as well as the 2000 Grant Morrison JLA: Earth 2 graphic novel, with a heroic Lex Luthor from an alternate universe coming to the Justice League's universe for help against the Crime Syndicate, but it is not an adaptation of either story. The film is the seventh in the line of the DC Universe Animated Original Movies line released by Warner Premiere and Warner Bros. Animation. The film is not a DCAU production in any way, despite being based on a DCAU script, nor is it connected in any way to the previously released Justice League animated film; Justice League: The New Frontier.

The two-disc special edition also includes an animated short featuring the Spectre as well as "A Better World", a 2003 two-episode tale from the Justice League television series which featured the Justice Lords.



The movie begins in an alternate universe where Lex Luthor and a heroic analogue to The Joker named The Jester are stealing a device from the Crime Syndicate headquarters, an evil version of the Justice League. After securing the unknown device, Luthor and The Jester attempt to escape, but the Jester sacrifices himself to allow Luthor a chance to get away, killing J'edd J'arkus (the Martian Manhunter opposite) and Angelique (Hawkgirl's counterpart) in the process. Lex Luthor is confronted by the remaining Syndicate members, only to escape to the Earth of the heroic Justice League.

Once there, he turns himself into the police. The Justice League is called in and confronts the heroic Lex Luthor. Once Superman's x-ray vision confirms this Lex Luthor is from another Earth and his nemesis Lex Luthor is still at Stryker's Island, the League agrees to hear Lex out. After telling his story, Lex asks the League to help save his Earth from the Syndicate, who have taken control of all crime on Earth and systematically eliminated Luthor's League members. The League decides to help Luthor, despite Batman arguing that the League is spread too thin to even solve the problems of their own world, let alone Luthor's. Luthor transports the remaining members of the League to his universe, while Batman stays behind to finish building the Watchtower.

On Luthor's parallel Earth, Slade Wilson is President of the United States. The world is being extorted by the Crime Syndicate, and the only thing holding them in check is the threat of nuclear retaliation against their base on the Moon.

Owlman is building a weapon, the Quantum Eigenstate Device or QED, which the Syndicate intends to use as the equalizer to the nuclear threat. When pressed by Superwoman, Owlman admits the weapon can destroy entire worlds. Operating under the theory that there are many parallel Earths, and that each one develops from our choices, he begins seeking Earth-Prime, the first Earth. Owlman, a nihilist, believes that destroying all of the Earths is the only action that would have any purpose. Owlman plans to destroy Earth-Prime causing a chain reaction that will erase the entire multiverse. Superwoman notes that even as a "murdering psychopath", she thinks Owlman is much crazier than she is. When the League eventually show up at the moon base of the Crime Syndicate, it becomes a free for all fight as everyone is matched up against their alternates and in some cases, have to help each other gain the upper hand. Eager to put his plan into action, Owlman not only initiates the QED, he also sends it to Earth-Prime and goes through the vortex with it. Batman deduces where Owlman has gone, but without a way to get there, it appears that everyone is doomed. A plan is hatched whereas Johnny Quick (Flash's counterpart)uses his speed to eventually match the temporal vibration, opening another portal to Earth-Prime so that Batman can engage Owlman.

Owlman is stopped by Batman at the last moment, who sends him to an uninhabited world that is harmlessly destroyed. Owlman has the opportunity to disarm the QED before it explodes, but in the end does nothing, saying, "It doesn't matter".

Back on the Crime Syndicate's world, Johnny Quick dies having used up the majority of his energy, a fate which Batman anticipated and the reason he stopped Flash from volunteering to open the portal. The remaining members of the Syndicate (Ultraman, Superwoman, and Power Ring) are arrested by the U.S. Marines (brought by the Martian Manhunter), who are led personally by President Wilson.

Wilson thanks the Justice League for giving them back their world and they are sent back to their own dimension. When they return, Wonder Woman keeps the still-cloaked plane that she stole from Owlman. Because of the League's forces being spread too thin, Batman thinks about a membership drive and opens the door to the heroes (Aquaman, Red Tornado, Black Lightning, Firestorm, and Black Canary) that he had summoned for help earlier and keeps them around to start expanding the League.



The Justice League in the feature originally consists of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Flash, and Martian Manhunter. They later ask the help of Aquaman, Black Canary, Black Lightning, Firestorm, and Red Tornado.

When the League first arrives on Earth-2, they face alternate versions of the Outsiders and Justice League Detroit. During the scene where Luthor shows the League a computer file on all of the Crime Syndicate members, alternate versions of Cyborg, Red Tornado, Power Girl, Blue Beetle, and Zatanna can be seen on the monitor. Alternate versions of Black Canary, Lobo and Green Arrow are briefly shown at various points in the movie.

The alternate Earth's Justice League included Lex Luthor, The Jester and his trained monkey sidekick, Harley.

DCAU elements

Justice League: Worlds Collide was reportedly intended to tie together Justice League and Justice League Unlimited.[7] Despite a heavy rewrite, Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths still contains some elements that bridge the gap between the series finale of Justice League and the revamping of the show:

  • The Justice League has six core members, as it was after Hawkgirl leaving in "Starcrossed, Part III".
  • The League is assembling a new Watchtower following the destruction of the original in "Starcrossed";
  • They have also just finished building and testing the teleporters, which were not featured in Justice League but were present and operational in the first episode of Justice League Unlimited;
  • Wonder Woman addresses Batman by his real name. The League's secret identities were revealed to each other in "Starcrossed, Part II";
  • Wonder Woman keeps Owlman's jet, which gets stuck in "chameleon mode". It is almost identical in appearance to the Invisible Jet she used in Justice League Unlimited.
  • Batman explains to Superman how they are "understaffed." He brings in Aquaman (in his traditional costume), Black Canary, Red Tornado, Black Lightning (who wasn't featured in Justice League Unlimited) and Firestorm to fight Superwoman and company aboard the Watchtower and keeps them around to start expanding the League.
  • Flash very clearly appears to be Wally West, specifically based upon the DCAU version; his character model and facial expressions are very similar, despite the different styles.
  • Green Lantern mentions that Flash has a car, which appeared in earlier episodes of Justice League.
  • The javelin fighters are briefly seen in the Watchtower's hangar.


Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths (Soundtrack from the DC Universe Animated Original Movie)[8]
Film score (Digital download) by James L. Venable with Christopher Drake
Released February 23, 2010
Label New Line Records
  1. "Break In" (3:13)
  2. "Finish What the Jester Started / Main Title" (3:24)
  3. "Only Surviving Member / Police Station / Of Course We'll Help" (3:09)
  4. "Headquarters Battle" (4:07)
  5. "Battle in the Sky" (3:59)
  6. "QED Monologue / Crime Syndicate / Made Men / Flash and Jon Shipyard Battle" (4:53)
  7. "Sup and Lex Fight Jimmy and Ultraman" (3:07)
  8. "Owlman Multiverse Monologue / President Office Monologue" (2:25)
  9. "Rose Garden and Ultraman Intimidation / Superwoman Toys with Bats / Batman Pissed at Luthor / Sniper Red Archer / Owlman Gets Quantum Trigger" (4:31)
  10. "Perimeter Breach Watchtower" (5:10)
  11. "Rose and Jon Mindmeld / Owlman's End / Batman Owlman Fight" (4:44)
  12. "Moonbase Intro / Is This Just a Little Too Easy / Moonbase Battle" (6:25)
  13. "Teleport" (3:10)
  14. "Jon Says Goodbye / Johnny Burns Out / Cavalry" (3:37)
  15. "Ending / End Credits" (4:04)


Like the other DC Universe Animated Original Movies before it, Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths has received very positive word of mouth. The World's Finest, one of the first sites to review the movie, said, "...the film ranks up there as one of Dwayne McDuffie's better works in the animated DC world and even though it’s reminiscent of stories we’ve seen in animation before, the brilliant work done by Moi, the directing by Sam Liu and Lauren Montgomery, and story make it more than worth watching again."[6] Ain't It Cool News also gave the film a positive review.[9]


  1. ^ "Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths - DVD Sales". The Numbers. Nash Information Service. http://www.the-numbers.com/movies/2010/0JLC2-DVD.php. Retrieved 2011-03-31. 
  2. ^ a b "Who wants Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths spoilers? - Page 2 - Comic Book Resources Forums". Forums.comicbookresources.com. 2010-02-14. http://forums.comicbookresources.com/showpost.php?p=10558994&postcount=21. Retrieved 2011-01-02. 
  3. ^ a b "The World's Finest - New Images, Cast Details For Upcoming "Justice League: Crisis On Two Earths" Feature". Worldsfinestonline.com. http://www.worldsfinestonline.com/news.php?action=fullnews&id=629. Retrieved 2011-01-02. 
  4. ^ a b c "The World's Finest - New Image, Cast Details For Upcoming "Justice League: Crisis On Two Earths" Feature". Worldsfinestonline.com. http://www.worldsfinestonline.com/news.php?action=fullnews&id=638. Retrieved 2011-01-02. 
  5. ^ "Josh Keaton (joshkeaton) on Twitter". Twitter.com. http://twitter.com/joshkeaton/. Retrieved 2011-01-02. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f "The World's Finest - DC Universe - Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths". Worldsfinestonline.com. 2010-02-23. http://www.worldsfinestonline.com/WF/dcuam/crisistwoearths/releases/film.php. Retrieved 2011-01-02. 
  7. ^
    Worlds Collide was going to bridge Seasons Two and Three; besides the origin of the Invisible Jet, it also set up the entire super-sized JLU concept. I don't wanna say anymore about it, just in case it ever does get made (there's still a chance, albeit a slim one at the moment, seemingly).

    Bruce Timm (circa 2005)

  8. ^ "The World's Finest - “Justice League: Crisis On Two Earths” Soundtrack Release Coming In February 2010". Worldsfinestonline.com. http://www.worldsfinestonline.com/news.php/news.php?action=fullnews&id=656. Retrieved 2011-01-02. 
  9. ^ "Harry has seen JUSTICE LEAGUE: CRISIS ON TWO EARTHS animated feature!!! - Ain't It Cool News: The best in movie, TV, DVD, and comic book news". Aintitcool.com. 2010-01-18. http://www.aintitcool.com/node/43675. Retrieved 2011-01-02. 

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