Geoff Johns, Ivan Reis, Gary Frank
Throne of Atlantis Crossover
Spoiler alert! You have been warned!
The first official part of this crossover is fantastic in just about every way imaginable. We start off with the surface accidentally launching a series of missiles into Atlantis while Superman and Wonder Woman go on their first official date as Clark and Diana. We forget about the impending war for a bit while we see the two heroes discussing the idea of masks and secret identities and why their disguises work so well. After all, no one would ever expect them to have time to be “real” people when their superheroes. That’s what makes Superman and Wonder Woman so different from Batman. As Clark says, “I’d rather good people trust me than bad people fear me.” We then have Batman talking to Cyborg as he’s trying to catch the Scarecrow’s henchman with the aid of the GCPD, when Aquaman and Mera suddenly burst onto the scene and help (even though Batman says he didn’t need it, which, let’s face it, he’s Batman, so he didn’t) in exchange for help in the accidental attack on Atlantis and what it might mean for the future. Which is apparently five seconds from now, because we flash immediately to Superman and Wonder Woman’s date being interrupted as the surface world is suddenly attacked by an Atlantean army, led by Aquaman’s brother, Orm, in the form of a flood that is immediate and swift and very, very deadly.
Neat things that DC is doing that Marvel isn’t: Well, this is infinite. It could be a numerous bulleted list or maybe even series of editorials all in itself. But the one super obvious one to all readers, whether you are a veteran comic book fan or a newbie, is the editors. And by that I mean the editors are acknowledging other stories going on simultaneously. This is not just good characterization and story and art, but world building at its finest. Flash is off fighting gorillas, so he’s not in the league right now. Green lantern is at war in space, so he’s nowhere to be found in this time of need. Batman is dealing with the Joker, yes, but he’s the most popular character in the DC Universe, so they need him. Not to mention the fact that Gotham is his base of operations, and currently flooding, so obviously he’s going to be lending a hand. Superman and Wonder Woman’s relationship is felt all over the DCU, and it’s not just one writer doing his or her thing and the others doing their own. The world is linked. The characters are realistic. And the drama is heartfelt, emotional, and believable. Good job editors, for actually using and guiding your talented artists and writers with the characters we all love and care about.
The backup story about Shazam is pretty good. And it looks like next issue is going to be the first epic fight between Billy Batson and Black Adam. We’ve got some great art, but I’m glad it’s a backup story. Mostly because, with this character’s history, it probably would have been cancelled if it was its own title. And, quite honestly, I might not have ever given it a try. This particular part is well done, but it does seem like something that would be better suited for a backup in DC Universe Presents, because it sort of detracts from the cliffhanger in the Justice League title itself. That being said, I’m still pumped to see what happens next in Throne of Atlantis. I’m sure Geoff Johns won’t disappoint.
My Rating: 4/5