Earth 2 #17


Earth 2 #17

Writer: Tom Taylor
Penciller: Nicola Scott
Inker: Trevor Scott
Colorist: Pete Pantazis
Letterer: Dezi Sienty
Cover Artist: Ethan Van Sciver (Hi-Fi variant cover Doug Mahnke and Alex Sinclair)

Lately I’ve been reading a lot of DC Comics, which is new territory for me. Forever Evil has introduced me to the Earth 3 characters, and now I’m plunging into Earth 2. As a longtime Star Wars fan, it definitely gives me a new appreciation for having just one continuity and universe. Earth 2 #17 opens with one of the most evil looking depictions of Superman I’ve ever seen. He’s awash in red, his eyes are glowing like coals of lava and he’s screaming “All hail Darkseid!” The caption boxes say it best…

Yesterday, our world changed forever.

Our greatest hero, thought dead, returned–

–as the herald for the greatest of evils.

It’s a great way to open the issue. Writer Tom Taylor doesn’t waste time in having Superman lay waste to everyone. His work in Injustice: Gods Among Us pays off as Tom makes Superman into even more of a bad guy. It’s interesting how the greatest superhero also makes the greatest supervillain.

The alternate reality of Earth 2 and it’s characters isn’t the easiest thing to shift into. It’s a completely different world with different heroes. Since this issue is my jumping in point, I’m not sure how much I’ve missed out on before, but it was startling to see Lois Lane as a red robot. The skies of the planet are defended by Star Trek looking vehicles and the superheroes look like Dollar General knock offs of the Justice League. There’s Amire Khan, commander of the World Army, and adorned with a turban. There’s Khalid Ben-Hassen, a gold cape magician who wears a golden helmet that looks like something the Greeks would wear. Jay Garrick, a version of The Flash that wears a blue and red outfit with a visored helmet. There are others, though they weren’t named in this issue. One guy has a red ‘T’ painted on his face, another guy looks like a steampunk scuba diver, and there’s a guy with a bow. Sadly, this issue doesn’t do a whole lot to make any of them very cool. Though Khalid gets an interesting focus as he tries to take on Superman and gets beat into the ground quite literally.

While the B-Team tries to deal with evil Superman, another bad guy stirs up trouble in the basement of their headquarters. Guess who? It’s evil Batman. Yes, as if evil Superman wasn’t enough, there’s evil Batman. He wears black and red and has evil red eyes. He attacks out of a cloud of red mist. His objective: to free the criminals and madmen imprisoned on Earth 2…in order to save it. So, yeah, I’m not sure if this Batman is really evil or what, but it’s a neat character twist. In this issue, Tom Taylor sets up some strange events and characters, and you know what, I’m intrigued enough to stick around for the ride.

The intriguing story is combined with some excellent artwork. Right from the beginning, the opening page is beautiful. There’s two smaller window panels set on top of a full page shot of evil superman cast in fire. The two smaller panels depict Earth and a close up of Superman’s chest symbol. It’s a great arrangement that works perfectly with the narration. The coloring gives it just the right sense of grim darkness. Throughout the issue, there’s lots of great artwork, and some of the panels truly stand out. There’s a shot of some horned helmeted guy’s head exploding, Superman raging on the battlefield, and Batman punching people in the face (that never gets old). The whole art team comes together to present a great visual compliment to the dialog and narration.

So while I may be completely lost as I jump into Earth 2 #17, Tom Taylor and the art team do a great job of making it an entertaining plunge. The story is intriguing and the artwork makes it that much more enjoyable. With evil looking versions of Superman and Batman rampaging around, I can’t help but be curious at what’s happening. Is Batman really going to let out a bunch of bad guys to fight Superman? Will they be able to stop Darkseid? Either way, I want to find out, and if the creative team behind this issue can carry on the good work, it’ll be a fun ride. I give this issue a four out of five metal bikinis.

Reviewed By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.

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