Thursday, February 25, 2010

Blackest Night #7

I just can't recognize the Blue Flash. I always think it is the Atom.

Well, I didn't get what I was hoping for, which was the resurrection of Martian Manhunter, Aquaman, Hawkman, Hawkgirl, and Firestorm. But I'm sure that's coming next issue!

Geoff Johns does move things along (finally). We've been reading this same story for what seems like a year now, and it has been the same status quo the whole time: Black Lantern collecting hearts for Nekron. Finally, finally, Nekron's plan is coming to fruition as some new facts about the DCU come to light too. Life in the DCU didn't start on Oa as has long been discussed, it originated on Earth. The reason the Guardians stayed away from Earth so long was to try and protect the "life" avatar. And like Parallax and Ion before, the white avatar of life is vulnerable until it finds a host. Some of the coolest sequences in this issue involve Nekron slamming his scythe into the life avatar. Each blow is accompanied by a burst of images of living things suffering as Nekron "kills every living thing in the universe." That's one big goal for Nekron, huh? And who is the brand new White Lantern, the first of the corps following "life?" I'm not telling! Check out the issue yourself!

Don't be fooled into thinking this is all cosmic nonsense (entertaining as that is). No, there is plenty of down to Earth characterization going on too. Lex Luthor turns out to be a bad choice to be an Orange Lantern. He wants everyone else's rings, all the glory, and everything else he can imagine. He's as much a problem for the heroes as the Black Lanterns. Yellow Lantern Scarecrow is awesome, creating winged monkeys from Wizard of Oz to attack Nekron's forces. John Stewart stands as the lone line of defense against a horde of Black Lanterns, with his call for help going nowhere thanks to Black Lantern Air Wave. Fortunately, the rest of the corps are on the way, leading to a huge space battle.

I can see why this took Ivan Reis so long to finish this issue. Not only is he drawing a few dozen super-heroes, there is also a ginormous space battle. There are probably hundreds of figures in this thing, many of whom are odd and alien. And Reis nails it. The art has played a huge role in this series and the iconic look Reis established is going to do a lot to make this an enduring DC classic. Once this is collected and the delays are forgotten, this is going to hold up as a fantastic GL/DCU story.


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