Ok, so the world is attacked by a real nasty mean guy. Which is usually how things like this crossover start. And, since it's a Superman crossover, Superman's home in Kansas gets hit pretty hard. I didn't bother to read most of the crossover though. Being an Aquaman fan, I was only interested in what happened to two characters and their supporting casts. So here's the lowdown on what happens to Aquaman and Tempest in Our Worlds At War.
Written by Jeph Loeb, art by Ron Garney and Mark Morales.
Shipped 5 July 2001
Kansas has been destroyed, and something called Imperiex is attacking the Earth. Diana and Arthur, and the rest of the JLA, are battling Imperiex in space and Diana is badly injured when she breaks open its armor and the thing explodes. Superman arrives to help, and takes the wounded from the first round of fighting to safety.
Various "Imperiex probes" are hitting places around the world, including one near Poseidonis. When Aquaman is informed of this, he heads back home to protect the capital city of Atlantis. Other probes are tearing up reserve members of the league and other super-groups. Maxima informs Superman of the danger to Atlantis after Aquaman has already teleported to the surface to prepare for the fight.
In the city, Aquaman suits up in battle armor, and says farewell to Mera. He asks Tempest to save Atlantis if Aquaman should fall. And he takes the powerful trident of Neptune out as a weapon. Then Aquaman faces Imperiex, who seems to be waiting for him. The battle is fought in the streets of the city, with its towers as the backdrop.
Aquaman proves to be the better fighter and strikes down Imperiex, but as he breaks the armor it explodes (as did the last one) injuring Arthur. Superman witnesses that relatively small explosion, and is caught in a second much more severe blast that apparently levels Poseidonis along with everyone in the city, creating a huge gash in the ocean.
NOTE: Casualties would seem to include everyone in the city, including Tempest, Mera, and Vulko. Dolphin and Ian are at Titans Tower and therefore safe. We also learn that Tempest is safe, but only when we read Wonder Woman #173 do we find out what happened...
Written by Phil Jimenez, art by Phil Jimenez and Andy Lanning
Shipped 22 August 2001
The battle still rages. Hippolyta has died, and the only way to win is for the Amazons to team up with Darkseid. And even that isn't enough, as once Darkseid has the power, the good guys learn that if he destroys the threat he'll only be unleashing it. Instead, they need to send it back in time and space to the Big Bang. But Darkseid hasn't got a Boom Tube at the moment. He needs something that can warp space on a large scale. Enter Garth.
Against his better judgement, he ends the threat by magically creating the biggest boom tube the universe has ever seen.
NOTE: Tempest doesn't want to create the boom tube mostly because he doesn't know where he sent Atlantis. His powers are immense, but he hasn't been tutored in all of them, and he hasn't had the chance to explore them fully. Apparently, when Aquaman battled Imperiex, Tempest tried to get the city out of harm's way, and teleported the whole thing somewhere unknown. So he's not only unsure of his power, but for all he knows he killed everyone in the city.
Written by Jeph Loeb, art by various
Shipped 29 August 2001
The battles are over, the war is won... now the heroes of Earth get on with burying their dead. Of course, some aren't burying, they are still searching. Like Batman... he's still trying to find his protege, Robin.
The Justice League has created a monument to Aquaman in the middle of the ocean. As a matter of fact, right at the spot where he vanished. This is for two reasons.
The gash in the ocean is still unhealed: water is defying gravity and physics to stay out of the open area. The giant hologram of Aquaman the JLA creates will warn shipping to avoid the area.
The second reason is that the machinery that houses the hologram is also a homing beacon. The Justice League has hope that Aquaman and his city will still return home, and hope that the beacon will guide them in when they do. Green Lantern swears to keep searching for them with his ring. And the others say their words...
Meanwhile, Tempest is at a lighthouse, pondering what he did to the city. As Wally arrives from the JLA memorial, he asks Tempest a very loaded question. Is Tempest the new Aquaman?
NOTE: So there we have it. Aquaman is missing in action, along with the entire city of Poseidonis (capital of Atlantis). Tempest is responsible for the disappearance of the city, and will need to consult with other magic users in the DC Universe to find it. And, for the time being, Tempest may be taking on some of Aquaman's duties as defender of the oceans.