Comic Book Review: Dark Nights: Death Metal

Details: This series is currently complete. More information can be found at https://www.dccomics.com/comics/dark-nights-death-metal-2020/dark-nights-death-metal-1 and https://dcdeathmetal.world/

Score: 6.5/10

Dark Knights: Death Metal is DC Comics big comic book event for this year. It is a mess. The prior big annual event was also written by Snyder and that was also a mess. This was an even bigger mess and while entertaining if you read it superficially, it feels too disjointed and pointless. If there was any real point to this series, it is to relaunch the DC Comics universe yet again and to launch an enormous line of toys and action figures.

If you’ve been keeping up with Batman and the Justice League comic books over the last few years, you’d be aware of the character known as The Batman Who Laughs. He’s basically an evil Batman from a parallel universe with all of Batman’s intelligence, but none of his morality. The Batman Who Laughs has obtained god like powers and threatens the entire DC Comics multiverse. Now the heroes and villains must band together to fight him and his nightmare forces.

After reading this, it’s clear to me that Snyder’s forte is writing horror, not large scale science fiction. Scott Snyder first met success at DC when he wrote for the main Batman book. His run on Batman is considered one of the best runs on Batman in its history. The story arcs here that got the most praise were the dark ones that were full of that horror atmosphere and yet had an optimism that permeated those stories.

Snyder later moved on to Justice League and the Death Metal annual miniseries’ which were books that mostly turned me off. They were just so scatterbrained. Snyder writes all these plot points that build up almost instantaneously and offer lackluster, unearned payoffs. It’s a weakness that I’ve also seen in Jonathan Hickman’s stories where the writer just tries to cram in too many ideas into a story and what you get is a half assed story that doesn’t do justice to any individual plot point. There’s too many things going that were set up poorly.

The same is true in Death Metal. There are too many cameos, plot points, development, references to past comics, all bereft of any competent setup. It all just ends up feeling cheap rather than what was like intended to be an epic moment. Of Snyder’s DC books that he’s written since leaving Batman, it was The Batman Who Laughs that I enjoyed the most. That was a small, intimate story with horror tones and ample character development. Death Metal lacks all that. It feels like Snyder constantly overreaches and throws in poorly researched elements of DC Comics history and glues them together for an incohesive story.

The art is great. I always enjoy Capullo’s art. It’s a shame that the story is so scatterbrained because good art cannot shine in a comic book with at least a somewhat decent story behind it.

Overall, this book was disappointing. Ultimately, this book exists solely to relaunch the DC Universe yet again in hopes of drawing in new readers, providing new stories to old readers, and to sell a ton of new toys.

Comic Book Review: Dark Nights: Metal

Details: Published from 2017 to 2018 by DC Comics. Six issues. Mostly written by Scott Snyder and mostly drawn by Greg Capullo. Official site is https://www.dccomics.com/comics/dark-nights-metal-2017/dark-nights-metal-1

Dark Knights: Metal is bonkers. It is absolutely crazy. Metal is DC’s big crossover comic book event from last year and centers mostly on Batman. Drawing from the story lines occurring after Rebirth, Snyder tells a crazy, overstuffed story that could have easily taken thirty issues instead of six.

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Comic Book Review: Reborn (2016)

Details: Six issue series. Published by Image Comics. Written by Mark Millar and drawn by Greg Capullo.

Greg Capullo and Mark Millar are comic book legends who have drawn and written some of my favorite comic book stories. With that said, Reborn is a short story that is okay, but not great.

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Comic Book Review: Reborn (2016) #1

Officials site is https://imagecomics.com/comics/releases/reborn-1

Mark Millar teams up with Greg Capullo for his next new series. My opinion on Mark Millar books are hit or miss. He has a lot of interesting concepts, but the dialogue he writes is generally the same. I feel like there’s a lack of restraint when it comes to a Millar story. No subtlety and some big twist that will come along and just smack you in the face. In other words, the execution of his stories generally cause me to lose interest after the first issue. This remains true with Reborn.

In this first issue, we learn that those who die in our world are “Reborn” into another, fantastical world where people and mythical creatures are at war. Our protagonist, a woman who dies is reborn into this new world and finds out that the people of this world think she is some kind of messiah and will save them all.

The story is really short and not much happens other than that. The explanation of this world and its mysteries will obviously be revealed in subsequent issues. As with other Millar stories, it’s an interesting concept… but I just don’t really care for it and don’t really want to read subsequent issues.

If I do stay with this book, it will be largely due to Capullo’s art. It’s great to see his style again, even though I feel that his work on Batman was far superior in terms of telling a story.

Score: 5.4/10 Probably not going to read any more issues, even if Capullo is drawing it.