It’s also not the first time someone predicted the end of the world and it didn’t happen.
A man goes to sleep…and wakes up in a world devastated by an apocalypse. No, it isn’t Rick Grimes from the Walking Dead, but Sgt. Gardner Grayle from the Atomic Knights! The original post-apocalyptic Kingdom!
After all, the world didn’t end on October 9-29, 1986 with World War III (the Hydrogen War), leaving the Earth devastated, with only lonely scavengers hunting all over the world, looking for canned food, and fighting other groups of survivors, as well as mutated humans…right?
Strange Adventures After World War II
....but again, the Atomic Knights don't make the cover of the issue!
Again, like most of their tales, the Knights aren't on the cover!
....at least for now.
Still not making a cover appearance!
Not making a cover (and one has to wonder how the Earth got so bad....).
Still, the team didn't make the cover, but that would change soon...
It was the Mole People that helped life on Earth, not us (well, humans did help).
Seems New Orleans can survive even the Great Disaster!
Seems the world of the future has problems with vegans....as these plants fight back!
It also felt like the covers were making Saturn responsible for the trouble (though the Atomic Knights didn't crossover with any other features in Strange Adventures at the time).
..and Kadey returns to enact revenge on the Knights, with a new device that can induce trances in others.
...the idea that humanity could survive a nuclear war relatively unscathed.
Still, it’s an interesting look back at how people from that era saw the future, and that we have the belief we can survive any danger, so long as we work together.
The adventure didn’t end with Strange Adventures #160, as the Atomic Knights just don't give up!
Return Of The Atomic Knights
This run supplied them more covers than in their original run, with #219 and #226 relating to the Atomic Knights and drawn by Joe Kubert, and #223 also featuring them, drawn by Murphy Anderson!
..though there were some inconsistencies as none of these worlds were originally planned to be part of a shared universe).
But, an even bigger disaster befell the Atomic Knights…that of real time.
DC Comics Presents #57 (May 1983, by Dan Mishkin, Gary Kohn and Alex Saviuk) had the world of the Atomic Knights revealed to be a hoax…all a computer simulation dreamed up by average soldier, Gardner Grayle, who was trapped in a computer, and almost plunged the world into nuclear war to make his fantasy world come true…
...if not for Superman and Marene Herald (with a little secret about her as well).
…so maybe Gardner Grayle’s Atomic War of 1986 existed somewhere…or somewhen…else).
This also left Gardner Grayle in the here and now, and available for use by others, and they made use of him!
So, it seems Gardner Grayle and the Atomic Knights are still great survivors, as they have battled a few would be dictators, made it through a few different Crises...
...as well as the Great Disaster!