October is the month for spooky stories and scary tales, as Halloween rolls around. And for the denizens of the DC Universe, what could be scarier than Darkseid, the despot dictator of the desolate planet Apokolips whose quest to master the Anti-Life Equation and rule the universe has brought him up against DC's heroes dozens of times?
Well, DC doesn't seem to think much of anything could be as terrifying as all that, so they seem to be tying their annual Halloween-themed one-shot plans to the darkest of Jack Kirby's New Gods in an anthology titled Are You Afraid of Darkseid?
(Not to be confused with Nickelodeon's classic all-ages horror show Are You Afraid of the Dark? (opens in new tab), for fans old enough to remember the early '90s).
"Gather 'round the fire, fellow campers, because it's time for that most terrifying of traditions - campfire stories so scary you'll never sleep without a night-light again!" reads DC's simple solicitation text for Are You Afraid of Darkseid?, as posted on the publisher's subscription service website (opens in new tab).
The site doesn't provide any further info about the content or creative teams of the stories in the Are You Afraid of Darkseid? anthology, though it states that the one-shot will have various writers and artists, implying that its apparently oversized page count will be split among enough tales to warrant the $9.99 price tag.
Originally introduced in 1970's Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #134 (opens in new tab), one of the early titles of legendary writer/artist Jack Kirby's Fourth World Saga (opens in new tab), Darkseid went on to become the primary enemy of the New Gods, even spilling over into the DC Universe proper to fight Superman and the Justice League time and time again.
As decades have passed, Darkseid has become one of, if not the biggest villain of the DC Universe, with adaptations into cartoons, toys, and even movies thanks to his all-too-brief appearance in Zack Snyder's Justice League.
Without even a cover to go on, it's hard to say how much Darkseid himself will factor into the one-shot - whether the stories inside will feature Darkseid himself, will be inspired by the fear he instills in the DC Universe in general, or may even be told by Darkseid remains entirely to be seen.
In other words, DC's got some tricks and treats lurking in Are You Afraid of Darkseid? when it arrives October 5. Before then, DC's slate of September 2021 releases will be outlined later this month on Newsarama in the publisher's official solicitations.
Darkseid has had his hands in some of the best DC Comics stories of all time.