DC's Earth 2 is being completely revamped in the pages of Earth 2: Society. And its new status quo appears to be incorporating Justice Society heroes from before the "New 52."
A cliffhanger in this week's Earth 2: Society #18 revealed there's now a red-headed version of Commander Steel - one who looks a lot like the 1980's iteration of the character, Hank Heywood III. Readers may remember that in the "New 52," the version of Commander Steel that appeared on Earth 2 was a brand new, Filipino character named Hank Heywood Jr.
This apparent incorporation of post-Crisis characters on Earth 2 echoes what's happening on DC's main earth, where "Rebirth" has brought back old, post-Crisis relationships and characters.
It's not clear whether the appearance of Commander Steel is also related to the tease in a recent issue of The Flash about Jay Garrick's old Flash helmet. Earth 2 currently has a version of Jay Garrick, but he doesn't wear the classic, Justice Society helmet - at least not yet.
The apparent appearance of this post-Crisis-era Commander Steel is part of the title's complete re-start, which Newsarama detailed in a recent interview with series writer Dan Abnett. Some of the characters in Earth 2 Society have experienced alterations of their costumes as part of the comic book's restart.
"It's a very new start," Abnett told Newsarama. "The key Earth 2 characters that we love carry over, but the world has changed."
The revamp started when, in September's issue #16 and #17, the old Earth 2 was "erased" in order to save it from destruction by the Ultrahumanite, and in its place is something new. But the main characters of Earth 2 - Flash, Fury, Red Tornado, Dick Grayson Batman and his son John, Huntress, Supergirl, Val-Zod, and Hawkgirl - all have retained their memories but have emerged in what appears to be a new world.
In this week's Earth 2: Society #18, that world became more fully formed and, voila - this new/old version of Commander Steel showed up on the last page.
Earth 2: Society #19 is scheduled to be released December 14.