As much as they're my preferred medium, I have to admit that comic books have a pretty major flaw. For visuals, they've got it covered with their unique combination of art and text, but for the other senses? Nothin'. I can tell you all about the history of Batman's war on crime and the different ways that it's changed over the past 77 years, but if you asked me to tell you what Gotham City smells like, I'd be completely unable to. Until now!
It seems that Tom King and David Finch have recognized this problem and taken steps to correct it in the pages of Batman #3, thanks to some very evocative descriptions of the sights and scents of the Dark Knight's hometown. Check out a preview!
DC Comics hosted a special livestream event at WonderCon in Los Angeles on Saturday afternoon to unveil the creative teams behind its DC Rebirth event, which relaunches the entire DC Universe line with new issue #1s and multiple double-shipping titles. The relaunch will set the future course of DC Comics at a time when fans are wondering whether the company will embrace a new and diversifying audience or double down on serving a shrinking core audience.
The event was introduced by DC All Access host Tiffany Smith, with DC co-publishers Jim Lee and Dan DiDio and chief creative officer and Rebirth chief architect Geoff Johns introducing and interviewing the creative teams as they joined them on stage at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
Following suit with the Batman: Black and White and Superman: Man of Steel signature designer statue lines, Wonder Woman finally got her own line last year. Dubbed Wonder Woman: The Art of War, the series presents full-color depictions of the Amazonian warrior from some of the most iconic artists in DC's employ. These interpretations don't have to be tied to any specific era or version of the character, and merely allow creators like George Perez, Jill Thompson, Cliff Chiang and more to put their own spin on the most powerful woman in comics.
While I'm not personally a fan of Finch's often over-rendered pages and inconsistent character models, the good thing about a statue is that you can't over-hatch it. Thanks to the deft craftsmanship of sculptor Clayburn Moore, the Wonder Woman: The Art of War by David Finch statue manages to be inspired by Finch's work without being held back by the artist's own shortcomings.
DC Comics' solicitations for June reveal that various members of the Justice League will be getting makeovers, and the new looks include a fully-covered Wonder Woman and a casual Superman.
In an effort to phase out the New 52 branding, Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Green Arrow, and Green Lantern will get new costumes to replace the New 52 threads that they've worn since August 2011. Aside from a mysterious Bat-robot, the redesigns for Wonder Woman and Superman feature the most notable stylistic changes, which I will break down in terms of design and superhero costumes after the cut.
DC has a Wonder Woman problem. Or perhaps more accurately, Wonder Woman has a DC problem. The idea of Wonder Woman as a feminist icon is so imprinted in her history, and in analysis of the character, that separating her from feminism should be near impossible. But that hasn’t stopped people trying.
Much has been written over the years about the ebb and flow of feminism in the Wonder Woman comics, the relative feminism of her appearances on the small screen, and her role as an icon for the movement. A recent interview with the new Wonder Woman creative team of Meredith Finch and David Finch has brought the topic back into focus.
So what have you been up to the ast three months? If you're penciller David Finch or inker Richard Friend, you were probably drawing liking a maniac, while avoiding daily, shouty phone calls from editors, as the seven-issue, "monthly" series Forever Evil finally shipped its final issue this Wednesday, a good three months after its sixth issue dropped. The delay has caused some trouble in DC's line, as it delayed the release of tie-in issues, and created some glitches in storytlines (Perhaps the most notable was that two issues of the series Justice League United, which picks up where Justice League of America ended, shipped before the final issue of JLoA).
DC Comics' event series pitting its bad guys again some even worse guys from another universe reaches its penultimate installment this week, as the home team of villains finally takes the fight to the evil invaders from Earth-3, the evil universe! Which of course means our super-close reading of this superhero epic also reaches its penultimate installments.
The latest issue of DC Comics' Forever Evilopens as the previous four did, with Lex Luthor sharing a little anecdote about his childhood that somehow relates to the current state of affairs. In this issue, it ends with Luthor telling readers that "48 hours ago, a group of beings called the Crime Syndicate came to our world and declared it theirs."
Forty-eight hours! That's only two days! But man, this story seems like it's been going on for months now. Like, at least five months.
So let's refresh our memories. The Crime Syndicate of Earth-3? Ascendant. The heroes of all three Justice Leagues? MIA. The Society? Running rampant. Dick "Nightwing" Grayson? Publicly outted and held captive by the Syndicate. Earth's only hope? Batman, Catwoman, Lex Luthor and a small band of disaffected villains, who were just about to get in a big fight at the end of Forever Evil #4. But then Power Ring appeared with a group of Society members crashed through one wall, and Sinestro crashed through the other.
And that can only mean one thing: A big fight. Wait, two things: There are only two walls left in the big, empty Wayne Enterprises room everyone is convening in. It is now a structurally unsound, and likely quite drafty, building.
In the pages of Forever Evil, the Crime Syndicate of Earth-3 -- the evil opposites of Earth-New 52's greatest heroes (plus an evil opposite of Alfred Pennyworth) -- have conquered the world!
The master villains have come up with a particularly brilliant plan to rid themselves of the DC Universe's heroes, trapping them all in sinister tie-in comics well beyond the pages of the main series. If you're wondering who's where, you can find most of the Justice Leaguers trapped in a weird prison in the pages of Justice League of America; Steve Trevor and his military team are in Forever Evil: ARGUS; the Teen Titans got sent into the future in the pages of Teen Titans; and all the magic guys are embroiled in their own 18-part tie-in crossover "Forever Evil: Blight", which is, amazingly, going to end up being much longer than Forever Evil itself will be. They don't call the Crime Syndicate villains for nothing.
It looks like the only forces left to challenge the Syndicate now are a handful of free-thinking bad-guys under the leadership of Lex Luthor, and Batman and his remaining Justice League allies, Catwoman and Cyborg. If they can put aside their differences and work together, they just might have a chance at saving the world from the clutches of the Crime Syndicate.
When we last visited the DC Universe in the wake of Forever Evil, it was a dark, grim and gritty place -- well, darker, grimmer and grittier than usual, anyway. Most of the members of the Justice League of America, Justice League Dark and Justice League Vanilla mysteriously disappeared after encountering the Crime Syndicate of Earth-3, the evil doppelgangers of Earth-New 52's greatest heroes.
Rallying an army of supervillains behind them, the Syndicate announced the death of the Justice Leagues, outted Nightwing as Dick Grayson, moved the moon to eclipse the sun, and exiled the Teen Titans into the time stream. With the world pretty much conquered, the Syndicate went about the business of ruling it -- you know, establishing a currency and economic system, redrawing maps, writing up a constitution, designing a flag, developing a body of laws, intervening in disputes between countries and the meetings! Oh, the many meetings they'll have to have!
Is that what we're in for with the remaining issues of the seven-part series? Perhaps we would be, were it not for a handful of villains unwilling to sign up with the Crime Syndicate. Villains with home-world pride. Bad guys who are bad, to be sure, but not that bad. They're just almost always evil, not forever evil, and this issue, they start to get organized.
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