Unlimited Access #4
Marvel/DC Comics (March, 1998)“Combined Forces!” WRITER: Karl Kesel PENCILER: Pat Olliffe INKER: Al Williamson COLORIST: Greg Wright LETTERER: Jim Novak CONSULTING EDITOR Mike Carlin EDITOR: Tom Brevoort GUIDING SPIRIT: Mark Gruenwald
With a team of amalgamated heroes, Access uses the JLA Satellite to attack Asteroid M. However, they arrive to find the Brotherhood and Darkseid’s forces have also been amalgamated thanks to Darkseid’s ally, a version of Access that joined Darkseid. The god of Apokalips attempts to fulfill that destiny by convincing Access to join him. Instead he ends up in a battle with his evil self, bouncing through numerous amalgamated universes until he finally gets the idea to amalgamate himself with his other self. Now a good guy again he refuses Darkseid’s offer, and now Darkseid has no Access at his command, and so accepts defeat, bringing his forces home and allowing Access to return everyone to their proper space/time location. He then tells Ming that he has to keep moving between universes but that she is the only thing worth coming back to.
What they got right: There isn’t enough for me to review them individually but I like all of the various amalgamations. They looked pretty cool. I like the moments between Ming and Axel. And Darkseid accepting defeat gracefully is rare among villains.
What they got wrong: I still say that there was more to be done with creating a mythos around Access. What if there were other Accesses and one of THEM turned evil, instead of a parallel universe version of the same one. Although I do wonder what happened with that version and Ming, Axel’s anchor?
Recommendation: It’s a good idea and worth getting to see historical versions of the superheroes team up as well as the temporary amalgamations. However, the chance to build a mythos around Access is tossed aside with a sad retcon that Axel is the only Access ever and evil timeline versions. This is why in the end it might be worth a look but this miniseries just isn’t as worth getting as the rest of the Access Trilogy.