|Oh, how things could have been different...|
EARTH-2 #15.1 - following the defeated Apokoliptian invasion of Earth five years ago, Desaad's been stuck on the planet trying to find a way back home to Darkseid. This apparently involves torturing people, converting them to his way of thinking and trying to capture technology that will allow him to get home. The only person he can't corrupt for reasons unknown is an unnamed artist.
Ho-hum. This was rather boring, honestly. The unnamed artist may or may not be some sort of homage to Jack Kirby but that might be me clutching at straws in the hopes of finding something interesting in this issue.
FOREVER EVIL #1 - Earth-3's Crime Syndicate have arrived and apparently killed the Justice League. With that done, they send out invitations to all the bad guys, bring them all together and announce themselves rulers of the world. Aside from that, Lex Luthor - of all people - is left wondering where the hell Superman is.
It sounds like a simple plot and it is, to be honest. There are some nice touches though, not least of which is my Cocktail moment (see below) but for now it's just all set up, and nothing we haven't seen before: Big collection of bad guys? How about Neron bringing all the bad guys together in Underworld Unleashed. A villain being killed by the bad guys to prove a point? How about Brainiac killing Earth-2's Lex Luthor in Crisis on Infinite Earths, or Neron killing Mongul in Underworld Unleashed? Still, it's a serviceable first issue and it's good (kinda) to have the Crime Syndicate back in action.
GREEN LANTERN #23.1 - it's the potted history of Relic and why he has such antipathy towards the power ring bearers.
Not bad, but I honestly didn't realise that the variant covers on the Green Lantern titles that I posted about the other day were going to be the pencilled pages of this issue!
JUSTICE LEAGUE 23.1 - here we get the new origin of Darkseid, how he was once a farmer who had the audacity to challenge the old gods, start a war amongst them and steal their power, becoming a god himself in the process. At the same time, his brother in law Izaya (although he's called Ixaya here) becomes his opposite number, Highfather. Once his godhood is achieved, he follows a pesky imp called Kaiyo from world to world, destroying dozens of them before his eventual defeat by the Justice League.
The best of this week's bad guy issues (that I read at least) this gives not only a new spin on Darkseid's origin but also informs us he's been raiding and defeating numerous Earths before he landed on the main one; the last page shows him lording over the unconscious or dead bodies of at least 14 Supermen. Good work.
JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #7.1 - Deadshot proves he's the best in the business by taking out a bad guy while freefalling from a mile up. At the same time, we get an origin story for him showing how he was the only surviving member of his family after the rest had been caught in the cross fire of a drug deal gone wrong.
It's not bad - the art's very nice - but it just seems a little thin.
THE STAR WARS #1 - the Empire's tired of waiting for the planet of Aquilae to join it so is planning to invade and grant leadership to Governor Hoedaack and his friend Darth Vader. On Aquilae, the Royal Family is sending their daughter, Leia, off to school while one of the last of the Jedi-Bendu, Luke Skywalker, is asked to take Annikin Starkiller, the son of another Jedi, as his padawan.
It's all familiar and yet different but still enjoyable. Not surprisingly, it's mostly setting things up so there's not a great deal of action and some of the dialogue seems a little stilted (perhaps scripter J.W. Rinzler stayed too close to George Lucas!) but the art's mostly splendid and it's a fresh take on a well known story.
And what made me smile:
Thomas Kord, head of Kord Industries, mentions his son - could we be one step closer to Ted Kord arriving in the New 52?