The Authority 3: Earth Inferno and Other Stories

authority volume 3 earth inferno and other stories cover trade paperback tpb
7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Art: 8/10

Always shocking and pushes the limits

Some stuff hasn't aged well and back-up stories don't have much substance

Comic Info

Comic Name:  The Authority (Volume 1)/Wildstorm Summer Special

Publisher:  Wildstorm/DC Comics

Writer:  Mark Millar/Joe Casey/Paul Jenkins/Warren Ellis

Artist:  Chris Weston/Frank Quitely/Cully Hamner/Georges Jeanty

# of Issues:  6

Release Date:  2002

authority #17 cover earth inferno

The Authority (1) #17

Reprints The Authority (1) #17-20, Annual ’00, and Wildstorm Summer Special #1 (September 2000-June 2001).  Earth has begun attacking its population.  Drowning cities, raising volcanos, and creating tornados, the Authority doesn’t even have the means to protect the people.  When the Doctor is publicly exposed as a drug user, the Authority must quickly find the truth or face losing the public support…and an old enemy is lurking in the background ready to pounce.

Written by Mark Millar, Joe Casey, Paul Jenkins, and Warren Ellis, The Authority Volume 3:  Earth Inferno and Other Stories is a DC Comics comic book collection under the Wildstorm imprint.  Following The Authority Volume 2:  Under New Management, the trade paperback features art by Chris Weston, Frank Quitely, Cully Hamner, and George Jeanty.   The collection has the four issue “Earth Inferno” story line from The Authority (September 2000-January 2001), the standalone Authority (1) Annual 2000 (October 2000), and the Authority story from Wildstorm Summer Special #1 (June 2001).  Issues in this collection were also collected as part of The Authority—Book 2, The Authority Absolute—Volume 2, and The Authority Omnibus.

The Authority is a fun title and the “fun” continues in this volume.  The Authority was always about the extreme and this volume is no different.  I remember reading this not long after it was released and being shocked by The Authority #17 (September 2000) which features New York City being hit by a tidal wave and the Twin Towers falling…it was before 9-11 when the issue was released, but it had bigger effect after the event which adds both weight (the death is immense) and points to the trivial nature of comics (it does not compare to seeing the Towers fall in real life).

authority #20 cover earth inferno

The Authority (1) #20

The “Earth Inferno” storyline is pretty good, but it also has that edge that The Authority had that sometimes feels uncomfortable.  There are a lot of anti-LGBTQ jokes in the comic that haven’t aged well (though there will always be people that hate and the characters making them generally are villains).  The Doctor also is a twisted man who even uses sexual abuse to subdue the Engineer…it leaves you with a bad taste in your mouth.

The back-up stories don’t feel like they have much substance to them.  They are there and they are addendums to the world of the Authority, but they don’t have much to add to the bigger story (especially since Millar isn’t writing them).  They are decent one-offs, but with each storyline of The Authority generally packing a punch, it doesn’t feel like an issue with little substance does much.

The Authority 3:  Earth Inferno and Other Stories continues the trend of The Authority to be a shock-and-awe comic.  The series isn’t afraid to offend or push the boundaries of good taste, but it does it smarter than some of the other series that try to surprise their readers with the “OMG” factor.  The Authority 3:  Earth Inferno and Other Stories is followed by The Authority 4:  Transfer of Power.

Related Links:

The Authority 1:  Relentless

The Authority 2:  Under New Management

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

Leave A Response