Pre-Crisis: Pt. 41
In Tales of the Teen Titans #58, the Fearsome Five releases Neutron and a battle with the Teen Titans ensues. Starfire blasts Psimon, who ends up in the Hudson River. Six pages later, while sinking deeper into the water, Psimon suddenly finds himself on board Monitor's satellite.
Things look a little different, though. Lyla is now wearing a costume and has assumed the name, "Harbinger," and we see Monitor in full for the first time.
It's interesting that he references a crisis taking place in three months, because Tales of the Teen Titans #58 was released in July of 1985... seven months after Crisis on Infinite Earths began hitting the stands. (That's why I'll be looking at the event chronologically by story, rather than by comic book issues or sale dates.)
We've come full circle. We first heard Monitor speak in the pages of The New Teen Titans in April of 1982, then his full identity was revealed in Tales of the Teen Titans three-plus years later in July of 1985. In between, he acted largely as a broker for weapons and an intermediary for villains in comics spanning the ages from Jonah Hex to Tales of the Legion, and criss-crossing throughout the DC multiverse.
You could argue that these pre-Crisis appearances do little more than build hype for the upcoming event. I'd counter-argue that they demonstrate the scope of an epic adventure, proving that Monitor and Lyla/Harbinger, whether heroes or villains, regardless of their ultimate purpose, are truly interwoven in the fabric of every corner of the multiverse. In some way that we do not yet realize, they have the power to affect everything that happens during Crisis on Infinite Earths.
Return every Wednesday to keep reading about Crisis on Infinite Earths...
Title: Tales of the Teen Titans
Issue #: 58
Cover Date: Oct. 1985
On Sale Date: 7-4-1985
Cover Artists: Chuck Patton, Romeo Tanghal
Writer: Marv Wolfman
Penciller: Chuck Patton
Inker: Romeo Tanghal
Colorist: Adrienne Roy
Editor: Barbara J. Randall, Marv Wolfman