August 2021 has five comic book shipping weeks for DC, so the publisher is serving up a healthy dose of annuals to help keep new products on the shelves.
DC will publish five 48-page specials including Batman/Superman 2021 Annual #1, Green Lantern 2021 Annual, Harley Quinn 2021 Annual #1, Suicide Squad 2021 Annual, and Midnighter 2021 Annual all on Tuesday, August 31.
Batman/Superman 2021 Annual #1 is by the series regular writer Gene Luen Yang with art by Paul Pelletier on the Superman side and Francesco Francavilla on the Batman side.
The special serves as an epilogue to the 'Archive of Worlds' story arc and readers of the arc will likely understand the flipbook format.
"In his pursuit of perfection, the godlike Auteur.io sought to create and destroy worlds with the wave of a hand and a flair for the dramatic. But against all odds... the World of the Knight and the World of Tomorrow live on!" reads DC's description.
"The Batman of the noir-tinged streets of Gotham City finds himself stranded in the sunny, retro-futurist World of Tomorrow—and Superman discovers himself in the opposite predicament. With their homeworlds in decay and only one chance to save them, the key to preserving their very existence is but the flip of a coin. Or the flip of this book!"
The flipbook format has the Superman story on one side, and the Batman and Robin story on the other with the stories meeting in the middle.
The issue features two connected flip cover pairings - the main connected covers by Bryan Hitch and a variant connected flip covers by Francavilla.
In Green Lantern 2021 Annual, writer Ryan Cady and artist Sami Basri focus on Jessica Cruz and the cover image should give you a clue to the nature of the storyline.
"Once an agoraphobic scared to even leave her room, Jessica Cruz overcame her fear to become a Green Lantern and face the darkest and deadliest threats in the universe," reads the publisher's description.
"But now, Jessica's gone from overcoming fear to using it as a weapon. When Yellow Lanterns attacked the Green Lantern Sector House she took refuge in when the Central Power battery was destroyed, Jessica turned the tables on them, giving them something to be afraid of, as she beat them one-by-one. But now that she's been offered a place in the Sinestro Corps, will she accept?"
Green Lantern 2021 Annual has a cover by Bernard Chang and a variant cardstock cover by David Nakayama.
Harley Quinn 2021 Annual #1 by writer Stephanie Phillips and artist David LaFuente is next up and features a new villain that goes by Keepsake and an old villain by the name of Solomon Grundy.
"Kevin here! You know, Harley's sidekick, and your favorite new character?" reads the official description. "I know Harley usually does these solicits, but she's a little tied up at the moment. Like, literally.
"See, there's a new villain in Gotham calling himself Keepsake, and you know how Gotham villains are: definite psychological issues. So Keepsake kidnapped Harley, while trying to convince her to be his partner and help take over the city. Now, I don't mean to imply that Harley's not capable all on her own, but this time she needs a little help. Which means I'm teaming up with Solomon Grundy so we can visit Gotham's worst criminals and figure out where Harley might be. Plus, a major new Bat-villain!"
Harley Quinn 2021 Annual #1 has a cover by LaFuente and a variant cardstock cover by Derrick Chew.
In Suicide Squad 2021 Annual by writer Robbie Thompson and artist Dexter Soy, Connor Kent might make a very disturbing discovery about his basic nature and origin, which the cover seems to give away.
"Everyone questioned how the teen calling himself Conner Kent came to be recruited into the Suicide Squad by Amanda Waller. But as Superboy sneaks into the bowels of a top-secret Task Force X black site, what he finds changes all he thinks he knows about himself and his history. This oversize annual alters everything for the only hero on the Squad and makes him question what to do next, now that he knows the truth behind his origin."
Suicide Squad 2021 Annual has a cover by Eduardo Pansica, Julio Ferreira, Marcelo Maiolo, and a variant cardstock cover by Gerald Parel.
Finally, Midnighter gets his own annual by the team of writers Becky Cloonan and Michael W. Conrad with art and the main cover by Michael Avon Oeming.
The annual concludes the story begun in Future State: Superman: Worlds of War and continued in serialized form in Action Comics.
"Midnighter traveled into the future to help get himself out of a jam, only to swap places with his future self," reads DC's description. "Now, the Midnighter from the future finds himself trapped in a paradox, working his way back to his onetime present to swap places again. Don’t worry if you're confused—so is he!"
The key to the storyline is Andrej Trojan, the "nefarious industrialist" who tried to exploit the Man of Steel's mission on Warworld to his advantage.
"Midnighter has been carrying Trojan's robotic skull with him, hunting for the 2021 iteration of the man, and shutting his whole company down before any of this trouble even starts."
DC also says this "time-travel escapade" leads into Superman and the Authority, which debuts in July.
Midnighter 2021 Annual has a variant cardstock cover by ACO.
Even if she retires her Green Lantern ring, Jessica Cruz is still one of the best Green Lanterns of all time.