There are a lot of really good reasons to read Tom King and Barnaby Bagenda's Omega Men. There's the compelling story that blends political intrigue and sci-fi action, the incredible technique that goes into building the story on the nine-panel grid, and even the fun of witnessing its miraculous resurrection from nearly being canceled halfway through its first arc. Or, if you're a certain type of reader, you might just be into it for its references to obscure '70s Superman comic backup stories.

For me, those are all equally appealing, so I was pretty excited to see that the latest issue, this week's Omega Men #8, included a reference to Stellarium, something that definitely falls under that last heading. But just what is that stuff?

 

 

Well, if you happen to have a copy of Superman #257 handy, then you already know that it's an answer to exactly the kind of question you get when you start building a shared universe of superheroes --- namely, "Why didn't the Green Lantern Corps stop Krypton from exploding?"

The answer is that they did. Or at least, that they tried. Tomar-Re, the Green Lantern of Krypton's sector (2813, if you're keeping score at home) was dispatched with an incredibly rare element called Stellarium, which had the ability to stabilize Krypton's explosive core. Clearly, it's strong stuff, and with the reveal that the Citadel --- the corrupt and brutal government that the Omega Men are battling through their interstellar insurgency --- controls the only supply in the universe, it's strong stuff that's undoubtedly going to come into play as the story continues.

We've already seen destruction on a pretty massive scale --- now it looks like we might see an entire planet blow up before we get to the end.