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DC COMICS TO FOCUS ON CONTROL BY NAZIS

Imagine an Earth of 1996 where Nazi Germany controls more than half the planet. This isn't a plot for Fox TV's "Sliders," it's a DC Comics miniseries - "Whom Gods Destroy" - due out later year.

According to Comic Shop News, the four-issue, prestige-format series will not only examine the horrors of an Earth where Nazis control the Eastern Hemisphere and more but also one that has only a pair of superheroes - Superman and Wonder Woman.DC is hoping to make the Amazon more of a major player in its universe, and this story would help that effort. A major motion picture featuring Wonder Woman is also in the works.

Speaking of movies, Batgirl will be a character in the fourth "Batman" movie. She'll also be returning to the "Batman" comics later this year.

In other comics news, Marvel plans on launching a special "Independence Day" No. 0 issue on June 19 to introduce fans to the July movie of the same name.

Being hyped as a modern-day "War of the Worlds" encounter; there's no "V" overtones here. This is an outright shootout battle with aliens from the beginning.

The $1.95 comic will appear two weeks before the movie premieres and will offer background on the alien force trying to take over Earth. The prequel comic will be followed by a two-part adaptation of the movie itself.

Marvel Comics is also working with Disney to produce a comic book version of the movie company's upcoming 34th animated film - "The Hunchback of Notre Dame." This 48-page comic will sell for $4.95.

The word is also that the Amalgam universe - a place where DC and Marvel characters are combined - may return again next year. The previous issues this spring had brisk sales. The universe featured composite characters, such as "Super-Soldier," where the legend of Superman and Captain America combined.

Finally, DC Comics apparently plans on having a Bizarro series in the Superman lineup for 1997. Bizarro is the strange, white-faced clone of the Man of Steel.