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The event of the year is here! This brand-new, year-long weekly series features a cast of hundreds where anything goes! With head writer Paul Dini and a rotating team of some of the industry's best writers and artists, COUNTDOWN will serve as the backbone of the DCU in 2007.

When a character dies in COUNTDOWN 51, it sets off an unexpected ripple that will touch virtually every character in the DC Universe.

The COUNTDOWN is on…so begins the end!

Desaad ponders the worth of life as he continues to torture another helpless victim. Darkseid comes in, looking over a table with figurines of the heroes and villains of Earth. He notes that the time will soon come when everything will be recreated and it is he who will shape the way things turn out.

On Earth, Duela Dent, the self-proclaimed daughter of the Joker, is at a night club. She spots a teen pop idol, grabs her, and makes an exit. She tells the singer to have her manager deliver ten million dollars or she will die. As they parachute out the window of the club, Duela's parachute is shot at. She drops the singer in order to save herself. Landing on another roof top, she soon sees the Red Hood with the singer in his arms.

After some talk, Duela jumps off the roof with the remains of her parachute. Red Hood again shoots at it, causing Duela to grab onto a nearby pipe. She is getting tired of this and decides to run from Red Hood.

In the hospital, Mary Batson is finally released after coming out of her coma. She is upset that no one was there for her or now that she is being released. She finds out that the hospital costs were covered by Freddy Freeman. He stopped by the hospital to pay her bill and left a note that said, "Mary, Don't try to find me." The week that she's been out of her coma, she's tried saying "Shazam" with no results. Outside the hospital, she says it again. The only thing that happens is it starts to rain. Probably just a coincidence, she figures. She knows she's without her power but that doesn't make her helpless. She is determined to find Freddy.

At the criminal Heat Wave's place, Trickster arrives for a gathering, even though he wasn't invited. Heat Wave is reluctant to trust him since he recently sided with Flash against them. Trickster says he's thinking clearly now and just wants to help give Flash a beatdown. On top of the roof, Pied Piper had a rat spying on them. He is surprised to see Trickster up to something. He comments that if the Rogues are up to something, he will not allow Trickster to get in his way.

Duela continues to run from Red Hood. She is surprised when a blast almost hits her. She didn't think Jason Todd would try to kill her. She turns around and fires a spray taser at him. The shock is sent back to her. She finds that it is not the Red Hood trying to kill her but rather a man in shadows. He says her presence in this world will not be tolerated. She belongs to another "Earth" and must face the penalty of death for being here. Red Hood comes to her rescue, not being fond of "gun-wielding crazies."

Standing before Red Hood is a Monitor. Red Hood asks what he is and the Monitor replies, "The Multiverse's only hope." He turns around and shoots Duela with his gun. Red Hood attacks the Monitor. The Monitor says that Duela was a threat to the sanctity of the multiverse and had to be purged. He is about to purge Jason too when another Monitor arrives. He tells the first that he is out of his jurisdiction. He acted without authority. The first Monitor says he didn't need any to take out "vermin" and teleports away. Looking at Duela, the second just says he is sorry. Jason reaches for Duela to find her, apparently, dead.

The Monitor travels to the Source Wall seeking the answers he needs. He mentions the tension in the multiverse they have detected recently and asks why it is happening. The response is "Great Disaster." The Monitor figures this means the end of time that was foretold is approaching. He asks for more information, how can the end be prevented, what is the solution? Their response to this is . This seems to surprise the Monitor.

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