The wait is finally over. Quite possibly the most anticipated comic event of the year has arrived, and to put is short and sweet…it doesn’t disappoint. Quite frankly, I was keeping my hopes pretty well grounded for this series. That’s nothing against Geoff Johns and Phil Jimenez whose work I adore…it was more of a defense mechanism to make sure that I wouldn’t be as disappointed as I was with some of the Countdown to Infinite Crisis minis. Fortunately, or not depending on the perspective, this issue not only kept pace with my expectations, it raised the bar to a whole new level for every single subsequent issue and damn but this is a fine book.I have way too many praises for this so I’ll save those till the end…the nitpicks I’ll cover right up front.
First off, I would like to say that while this was a DC fanboy’s dream come true, this issue was not even slightly new reader friendly. The cut-aways to events being referenced from the minis, the slavish degree to which continuity which goes back 20 years was referenced, and the appearance of more than a few characters who new readers would have no idea about make this series a headache for any reader who is either new to the DCU or new to comics entirely. Supposedly this gets fixed in issue 2, but since most people determine he effectiveness of a comic by the first issue, it does not bode well for the browsers. Another nitpick, and this is most likely personal rather than general, is that this series is now most definitely a complete and total sequel to Crisis On Infinite Earths and while that’s ok, it’s unfair in the sense that DC kept saying it either wasn’t or the old refrain of “wait and see.” I don’t mind the secrecy, but the few times that Dan Didio has outright lied about this not being a sequel really burns me. The readers should get atleast a modicum of respect in that they should be allowed to formulate their own theories rather than lying to them flat-out. Anyway, that’s pretty much it for the bad stuff about this issue…and considering that it’s a 30 pager…that definitely ain’t half bad.
The good, the fanboyish squeal-worthy moments in this issue far, far outweigh any and all things that may be construed as unsavory. First off, kudos to Johns for making me absolutely adore the ‘Goddamned’ Batman. These panels not only captured everything that I believe defines the Superman-Batman relationship, but also, very effectively showed how wide the rift between them has actually become:Jimenez also perfectly captured the inner workings of the two and brought them to the surface. Superman looks so wounded, so raw right there, that it’s hard to believe that this is the strongest mortal on the face of the planet. Batman ofcourse, does not give anything away, and therein lies the beauty of this book. Each character (with the possible exception of Wonder Woman…that’s a matter of argument) acts exactly like you would expect them to act. Far too often characters starts acting like polar opposites in minis which and I’m glad to see that the writing is consistent between all the DCU titles.
Rather than go on and on about each and every single page of this book (and trust me, I could) I would rather like to comment on the end while trying to not give it away…Friggin’ Awesome!!! That’s the best ending ever, and while I still am on the fence about what exactly it means, it undoubtedly made me want to yell out loud and pump my arm in the air (I didn’t…but I did want to). Absolutely brilliant, and I cannot wait for the next issue. I plan on reviewing every single issue of this series, so if nothing else, this blog will be on a monthly schedule for a while…that’s something huh?
As much as I love talking about comics, this is a general interest blog, so expect the next entry to be about another one of my cats…and then maybe I will actually be the last blogger to discover Scott Pilgrim…we shall see…stay tuned!!