A major superhero team is mentioned in the first issue of “Future State: Superman – Worlds of War,” hinting at their imminent return.

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for the stories “Midnighter: Future State”  by Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad, Gleb Melnikov, Jordie Bellaire & Travis Lanham, as well as “Time and Effect” by Brandon Easton, Valetine de Landro, Marissa Louise, and Dave Sharpe, from Future State: Superman – Worlds of War #1 on sale now.

DC’s Future State has introduced readers to a brand new realm of possibilities for their favorite characters, and it seems like the fan-favorite team, The Authority, has a place in the future history of the DC Universe. The possibility of the Authority showing up together again after so long is a great sign for a horrible future, although the world they came from isn’t much better.

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In the Future State: Superman – Worlds of War #1 back-up stories “Midnighter: Future State” and “Time and Effect,” Midnighter is working to put a stop to what he believes is a Kryptonite development facility, seemingly run by his former teammate and love interest Apollo. Superman has been captured by Mongul and forced to fight almost non-stop in the despot’s Warworld arena. When Shilo Norman’s Mister Miracle accidentally transports himself to Warworld, he has a random run-in with Midnighter, who recognizes the hero immediately and foregoes any pleasantries to get right down to business. Midnighter tells Shilo to send a message to the Authority or the JLA, for backup before teleporting away to continue his work elsewhere.

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Created by Warren Ellis and Bryan Hitch, the team was first introduced in 1999’s The Authority #1 published by WildStorm. When the long-running Stormwatch and its subsequent spinoff titles came to an end, many of the characters from the various Stormwatch teams came together under the leadership of Jenny Sparks. Jenny founded the Authority to do whatever needed to be done to protect the world. Their adventures would see them face off against interdimensional invasions, alien onslaughts and even taking on the creator of their world.

Eventually, the team would take control of the United States after the country’s government ignored their warnings and accidentally destroyed all of Florida. The Authority would go on to be one of the most successful WildStorm titles until the DC imprint was shut down in 2010, but that wouldn’t be the end of its greatest heroes.

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When the New 52 era began in 2011, many of the Authority’s heroes would find themselves reborn in the pages of the new Stormwatch. The new lineup featured Authority veterans Apollo, Midnighter, Jenny Quantum, the Engineer and Jack Hawksmoor alongside Martian Manhunter, the team acting as DC’s latest black ops superhero squad born from the former Demon Knights.

While this series was far brighter than The Authority had been at WildStorm, it was still a darker title compared to much of the rest of the New 52. Now that the DC Universe has left the era of Death Metal, the team’s roster is beginning to show up again in Future State, and they’ve even gotten back together, at least in part.

It may not be all that surprising that The Authority are back in business, even if it is shocking to see them name-dropped for the first time in a mainstream DC title in over a decade. Without knowing what all has happened between our present and the time that Future State takes place, there is plenty of room for the team to have been formed in the now primary DC Universe. Of course, The Authority has never been put together for anything good, making their reunion more of a bad omen for the rest of the world than anything else.

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